Events » Art Review




Pig Perfect Dinner
7 p.m. Tuesday, May 24

Culinaria, 1519 Carondelet St., 522-8789, ext. 111 Peter Kaminsky's new book, Pig Perfect: Encounters With Remarkable Swine and Some Great Ways to Cook Them (Hyperion Books), is as difficult to set aside as bacon; still, it just might be the Annie Dillard blurb on its back cover that sells the most copies. 'I love ham and I love this book,' she writes. The porcine-inclined are a passionate group, and Kaminsky heads the pack with this 280-page account of his personal obsession. Research and appetite drew him to pigs wild and cured throughout the American South, Burgundy, France, and even to Ossabaw Island off the coast of Georgia. This week he will arrive at Culinaria, a cooking school and events facility in the lower Garden District, where he will dine and sign during an event unofficially dubbed Porkapalooza. Chefs Susan Spicer, of Bayona, and Donald Link, of Herbsaint, will collaborate on the evening's five-course meal, even incorporating pork into the dessert. Tickets $100 for Slow Food members, $110 for the general public. -- Sara Roahen


Brazilian Trombone Ensemble & the Jeff Albert Quartet
11 p.m. Thursday, May 26

The Blue Nile, 532 Frenchmen St., 948-2583; When this show starts, there will be more than 1,000 trombonists in New Orleans for the International Trombone Festival. A nightmare for some, but a dream for most, especially when local trombone virtuoso Jeff Albert (pictured) takes the stage with Brazilian Trombones. Albert has played around town for years in such ensembles as the Naked Orchestra and Michael Ray's Cosmic Krewe, and he is known for his ability to jump from traditional to modern music without a hitch. Sharing the stage are Renato Farias and Radegundes Feitosa of the Brazilian Trombone Ensemble, the world-renowned group that interprets Brazilian music for trombone in the same way Bonerama interprets rock music. Contemporary musicians with a sense of history, the Brazilian Trombone Ensemble examines Brazil's little-known trombone tradition. The rhythm section for both bands includes bassist Roland Guerin, pianist Matt Lemmler and the recently returned Mark Deflorio on drums. Tickets $10. -- David Kunian


10 p.m. Friday, May 27

The Howlin' Wolf, 828 S. Peters St., 522-WOLF; Fans of Ballzack's Knucklehead Memoirs will be a little surprised by his new album, Chipmunk Dream Machine (Lambs on Helium). Best known as a rapper telling low-rent tales of life on the West Bank, Ballzack has evolved. Hip-hop still shapes his sensibility, so the garage rock riff of 'Doodlebug' is looped, though he sing-speaks instead of raps. The songs alternate between spare, keyboard-driven tracks like 'Walking Thru a Drive-Thru' and acoustic guitar-based songs like 'Bubble Letters.' They're all built on electronic beats, but the CD suggests Ballzack's realized that a wider musical palette is available to him, and he's interested in exploring it. 'There's a Man in the Motherf--king Woods,' for instance, is an exercise in paranoia lyrically and texturally unlike anything on the album. Where his first album may have recalled the Beastie Boys' reprobate attitude, Chipmunk Dream Machine brings early Beck to mind. Tickets $8. -- Alex Rawls


New Orleans Wine & Food Experience
Wednesday-Sunday, May 25-29

Various venues and restaurants, 529-WINE (9463); Billed as 'a five-day fantastic feast for all the senses,' the 14th annual New Orleans Wine & Food Experience (NOWFE) once again indulges food and wine lovers with a whirlwind of New Orleans' best offerings in music, shopping, seminars and, of course, food and wine. NOWFE kicks off with Vintner's Dinners on Wednesday evening, with more than 30 top area restaurants creating menus to be paired with select wines from various winery representatives. Dinners begin at 7 p.m.; visit NOWFE's Web site at for a full list of participating restaurants. On Thursday night, the Royal Street Experience closes the scenic street through the French Quarter to vehicular traffic and opens the doors to antique shops and art galleries, with the stores offering wine and cheese tastings and live performances by local musicians. NOWFE takes a turn for the serious during the weekend, when two days of seminars are held on a wide range of topics, with individual sessions led by winemakers, viniculture experts, restaurateurs and more. Grand Tastings take place at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center. The Grand Tastings collect the best dishes from more than 100 top local restaurants and wines from more than 200 vintners. For price and registration info, visit -- Frank Etheridge


Wednesday at the Square, with Sonny Landreth and Eh, La Bas!
5 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 25

Lafayette Square, 500 block of St. Charles Avenue, 561-8927; Merging a see-and-be-seen yuppie aesthetic with a stellar roster of local musicians, the popular Wednesday at the Square concert series marches steadily toward summer, this week offering a double bill indicative of Louisiana's rich musical pedigree. Slide-guitar wizard Sonny Landreth performs two sets, giving the audience plenty of time to soak up his fiery brand of blues-rock. Landreth, a south Louisiana native and resident, frequently performs in town, whether it's a typical gig at Mid City Lanes Rock 'n' Bowl or a Jazz Fest season showcase such as this year's Slide Summit, which featured Landreth along with other top-notch axe-shredders. The Creole styling of Eh, La Bas!, a family band led by brother-and-sister duo Moise and Alida Viator, will perform during Landreth's set break. Eh, La Bas! performs an engaging, highly danceable blend of hot jazz and Caribbean rhythms, a sound forged by a tight band comprised of multiple horn, guitar and percussion players. Free admission. -- Etheridge


New Orleans New Music Ensemble
8 p.m. Thursday, May 26

The Big Top, 1638 Clio St., 569-2700; Musical genres are constructed; they don't occur naturally. Music is music, and categorizing it simply makes it easier to describe, but it also can limit the way people think about it. Local musicians Dr. Jimbo Walsh, Sarah Phillips, and Ingo Deul organized the New Orleans New Music Ensemble, and this 18-piece band doesn't play genres; it plays music. This concert will feature group improvisations and new pieces by local composers, including 'Evolution/Revolution' by Dave Anderson of the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra, 'Nuit' by Bruce Bennett of Tulane, and works by Jonathan Freilich of Naked on the Floor, trombonist Jeff Albert and 'Diesel' Dan Ostreicher, famous for his nimble ways around the rare bass saxophone. Shows like this that premiere new music in a fun setting don't happen often enough. Walsh says, 'It's jazz. It's classical. It's punk. This is not a stuffy affair. Cocktails will be served.' Tickets $5. -- Kunian


Lenny McDaniel
8:30 p.m. Friday, May 27

The Bombay Club, 830 Conti St., 586-0972; New Orleans music veteran Lenny McDaniel has found a musical home at the intimate Bombay Club, where he plays four nights a week. On Two Sides (independent), his seventh album, he sticks to the rocking R&B he has made his signature, singing passionately about traditional themes in terms we all recognize. 'Information Overload' deals with the intrusion of technology into our lives, but other than that, McDaniel sings about conflict. The title track talks about it in broad terms -- 'Might be your sister, might be your brother / Might be the preacher, might be the priest' -- while 'Because of Who' is about men, women and the hard time they have staying together. He gets help from Marc Adams, Doug Belote, and Jerry Jumonville on organ, drums and horns, respectively, but McDaniel plays bass and piano in addition to guitar. As always, his voice is husky and soulful. No cover. -- Rawls


Little Freddie King
10:30 p.m. Saturday, May 28

Tipitina's, 501 Napoleon Ave., 895-TIPS; Born in McComb, Miss., Little Freddie King took a train to New Orleans in 1954 at the age of 14 to play music. Supporting himself repairing televisions (which, half a century later, he still does), King developed a raw, grinding guitar style more reminiscent of the Mississippi hill country than the Crescent City's honking R&B-influenced blues. King, born Fred Martin, picked up the appellation while playing bass in the 1960s with bluesman Freddy King. Having survived decades of alcohol abuse and at least three bullets (taking two from his wife and one while onstage on Mardi Gras Day), King retains a notoriously wild stage presence, working the jazz and blues festival circuit in the U.S. and Europe. His new release on Fat Possum Records, You Don't Know What I Know , showcases his nasty, gutbucket blues chops with tracks like "Crack Head Joe" and the almost-folky country blues "You Rascal You." With the Morning 40 Federation. Tickets $10. -- Alison Fensterstock

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