It’s 94 days to Mardi Gras.
The musical selection to start us off this week is Professor Longhair singing: Go To The Mardi Gras
As you listen to the music, photos are flashing. The black and white shot with the HUGE crowd is not Bourbon Street, but Canal Street. The shot of the tree with stuff hanging down – that stuff isn’t Spanish moss, but Mardi Gras beads. The song mentions the Zulu King. When I was a girl, a neighbor of ours was King of the Zulus.
The photo below of Professor Longhair is from Johanna’s Visions: a music site. It’s chock-full of musical information.
I am going to apologize right here – I can’t get WordPress to load links, so I’m going to add them. I hope you’ll take a moment to cut-and-paste and link to the sites as you read.
Last week on our Journey to Mardi Gras, Miss Pamela shared with us a personal story that included marching bands and the Krewe of Pegasus. http://writermason.com/writermason-productions
This week, we’re going to follow her lead with a closer look at krewes.
When you see the word “krewe” you most likely think – “What?”
Legend has it that Krewe comes from the old English word Crew. Origin: late Middle English – crewe
A Krewe (crew) is a group of people involved in a particular kind of work, only in New Orleans, the work involves Partying and Parading.
Each krewe has a theme. For example: Rex is the oldest parading krewe, dating back to 1872 and their colors are purple, green and gold. There’s Zulu, named for the fiercest of African tribes and their “throws” are coconuts. Pegasus’ slogan is, “Neither rain, nor cold, nor strike, nor hurricane’s might.” Their “show must go on” attitude is evident in their history, which you can read about, and information about other krewes at Go Nola
I’m interested in the Krewe of Orpheus. http://www.kreweoforpheus.com
Here we’re going to change the music and then link music and Mardi Gras krewes.
Take a listen to Harry Connick, Jr. and Dr. John in a live recording from 1989 singing Do You Know What it Means to Miss New Orleans.
The 2013 Mardi Gras is the 20th anniversary of the Krewe of Orpheus.
One of its founders is Harry Connick, Jr., known for his musical prowess, so it’s fitting that the krewe he helped found is named Orpheus.
Mythology: Orpheus, the son of the Greek muse, Calliope, and Apollo, was a greatest musician. His songs charmed even the hardest of hearts.
(For the record, I’ve seen Harry Jr. in concert, and I met his father, a musician and singer, too, at a jazz club in New Orleans.)
The photo is compliments of photographer Paul Mannix. He’s got some other really cool photos of all things Louisiana.
Orpheus rolls on Lundi Gras, the Monday night before Fat Tuesday, however, they’re kicking off the Carnival season with a party they call 13th Night, on Saturday, January 5th.
Want to know more about Orpheus? Here are FAQs:
1.) When is the Orpheus Parade?
Monday, February 11, 2013 beginning at 6pm.
2.) How can I ride in the parade?
Only members of the Krewe are allowed to ride in the parade.
3.) Can anybody join the Krewe of Orpheus?
All men and women of good character are welcome to apply for membership.
4.) How do you become a member of the Krewe of Orpheus?
Please contact our office at (504) 822-7200.
5.) Are there activities besides the parade for Krewe Members?
We have several social events throughout the year including pub crawls, 13th Night,
Open House and the Captain’s Party.
6.) Can I go to the Orpheuscapade if I’m not a member?
The Orpheuscapade is open to the public. To purchase tickets, please contact our office at (504) 822-7211.
Now every krewe has their special throws – think party favors – that krewe members toss to the crowds as they pass. Many of the “throws” are now collector items. Krewe Orpheus sells throws through their website. http://shop.kreweoforpheus.com
I hope you’re enjoying the Journey to Mardi Gras. Let me know how you like the music!
Laissez les bons temps rouler!