Shows heading into the first weekend of Jazzfest.

It’s that time of year again. Here are some events to add to your entertainment schedules into the first weekend of the festival:

Mon 4/22- with King James and the Special Men- Saturn Bar 10pm
Tues 4/23- with Martin Krusche Band- Hi Ho Lounge 9pm
Thurs 4/25- Trio with James Singleton and Skerik- Zeitgeist Theater and Bar-9pm
Thurs 4/25- New Orleans Klezmer All Stars- Siberia Lounge 11pm
Saturday 4/27- with the midnight disturbers- Jazzfest 1:20pm
Saturday 4/27- with James Singleton Trio- Zeitgeist Theater and Lounge- 9pm
Sunday 4/28- with The New Orleans Klezmer All Stars- jazzfest lagniappe stage-6pm
Sunday 4/28- with the valparaiso men’s chorus- siberia lounge 10pm
Monday 4/29- solo guitar- Bywater Bakery 10am


The Coronation goes up at Music Box- Operatic Collab. by Bernard Pearce and Jonathan Freilich

Shows are April 5 and 6. It’s an intriguing idea and I have been lucky to be a large contributor, compositionally, on the project.

Other performers include Helen Gillet, Janna Saslaw, Anais St. John, Jennie Lavine, Julie Odell, and Trendafilka.


Taster of 'Esplanade'- a collaborative film nearing completion

For about 18 months I have been involved in a fascinating film/music collaboration with artist, David Gamble. It is neither a soundtrack to a film, nor a music video…finally!

Anyway it is an exciting work. Here is a taster. I composed all the music.

David Gamble is a great artist and portrait photographer. For more info on him go here…

Composing for Collaborative Opera at Music Box Village

Back to Opera composing. It’s been a few years since the last one.

I will be collaborating with Bernard Pearce and many others on his original idea. The Music box Village is a fascinating outdoor performance venue with a very special set of large installation instruments.

The piece will go up in Spring 2019.

To follow the information-

music box village.jpg
bernard pearce

bernard pearce

Show schedule across Jazzfest.

Here is what to look forward to.  Mark down the dates and improve your scramble for a spiraling higher and higher musical ecstasy.

Thursday 26th May 9:30pm- Siberia Lounge- The New Orleans Klezmer All Stars feat. Ben Ellman
Friday 27th May 11pm-Starlight Lounge- Derrick Freeman Trio
Saturday 28th May 4:20pm- New Orleans Jazzfest-Klezmer All Stars feat. Steven Bernstein
Tuesday May 1st 9pm- 3 Keys at The Ace Hotel- Naked On The Floor feat. Steven Bernstein
Tuesday May 1st 11:30pm- Blue Nile balcony Room- Steven Bernstein's Fest Mob
Wednesday May 2nd 11am-1pm- The Bywater Bakery- New Orleans klezmer All Stars
Thursday May 3rd 9pm- Hi Ho Lounge- Saucefest
Friday May 4 8:30pm- Zeitgeist Multi Disciplinary Art Center- James Singleton Band
Friday May 4th midnight- Sidebar - New Orleans Klezmer All Stars Trio feat. Aurora Nealand
Saturday May 5th 10pm-Vaughan's Lounge-Klezmer All Stars double bill w/ Morning 40 Federation
Saturday May 5th-midnight- Chickie Wah Wah-James Singleton Quartet
Sunday May 6th 11:30pm- Chickie Wah Wah- Mike Dillon Quartet


The New Orleans Klezmer All Stars website launched

A new All Stars site is up.  Read all about it...or click here, we mean...

Photo by Doug Mason

Photo by Doug Mason

Our upcoming shows during jazzfest:

Thursday April 26 at 9:30pm Siberia Lounge fro the Eastern European Bloc Party
Saturday April 28 at 4:20pm The Lagniappe stage  Fairgrounds for the Jazzfest.
Wednesday May 2 at 11am Bywater Bakery
Friday May 4th at midnight at Sidebar -Klezmer All Stars Duo/Trio w/ Aurora Nealand
Saturday May 5th 10pm Vaughan's Lounge- double bill with The Morning 40 Federation

For more information and lineups check the new website I am on about here.

Conversations- Griffin & Freilich discus Morvern Callar (2002)


Another episode of our podcast on film.  This week we are discussing the Scottish film, Morvern Callar.  A fascinating film that you may not have come across.

The podcast feed is available on iTunes, but best through

They host and produce the show.  There is a growing collection which you can find links to by scrolling down this page.

Happy March to you.


Conversations 2: Podcast- In The Mood For Love w/ Henry Griffin and Jonathan Freilich

Nolascape is hosting and producing  film heavy conversations by Professor Henry Griffin and the author of this site.  This one on a great movie by the singular director- Wong Kar Wai.  The film is just beautiful to look at, and there is far more beneath the surface...

Nolascape says-

In this episode Henry and Jonathan discuss In the Mood for Love. If you don’t know this film or the work of Chinese director Wong Kar-Wei, I would suggest diving in. In the Mood for Love is a visual and auditory feast that you can watch over and over, like you look at a great painting or statue again and again. Color, sound, image, movement, quiet passion, powerful emotion powerfully restrained – it’s special.
Suggestion from the amateur (me): think about the title again after you watch the film.
Some intro facts:
Wong Kar Wai

Wong Kar Wai

Sunday Oct 2nd at Chickie WahWah with James Singleton, Johnny Vidacovich and Skerik

Running into New Orleans for a couple of days with primary focus of playing with these wizards.  Folks sharpened by time, not dulled.

Come by at 8:30pm on Sunday 2nd at Chickie Wawa to see

James Singleton- bass
Johnny Vidacovich- drums
Jonathan Freilich- guitar

First you will very easily transcend that endless dreck bowl, the Trump-o-sphere and will know by the end that there are far larger things afoot.

Music is the greatest guide to the deep mind. That's confirmable and scarcely documentable.  Parlayable though...

New Croissant Heights from the rhythm section that knows what it is.

Interview on 'It's New Orleans: Out to Lunch show' with LPO conductor Carlos Miguel Prieto

Here was an interesting invite- a conversational program about business recorded at Commanders Palace about The Naked Orchestra and the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra.

You can listen to it on their website here ...

Conductor of the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra, Carlos Miguel Prieto and I, talk about the funny money stuff that goes on with orchestra operation.  
The show is available online at any time.  It airs on WWNO on 5/26 at 1pm and again at 6:30pm.

Carlos Miguel Prieto

Carlos Miguel Prieto

Just added- New Orleans Klezmer All-Stars at Chazfest-4/27/2016


Just confirmed.  Another chance to catch the band and, it's at one of the seasons great events.  The Chazfest

The interviews page on this site has much content from the first Chaz festival.  We will be doing interviews this year since it may well be the last Chazfest.  Updates and reflections must take place!

I will also be appearing with the Valparaiso Men's Chorus out there.

Upcoming shows around jazzfest- less spectacle, more catharsis.

It's that time of year again.  A little more going on and there is a number of interesting performances afoot from this direction.  Check these out!

Thursday April 14th- Tonight- with Blake Amos quartet at Yuki Izakaya (Frenchmen st) 8-11pm.  Blake plays many originals and classics, all heavily Brazilian inflected and it's no joke, he's heavily steeped in that- but also drenched in what was here too.  Simon Lott on drums.  Come by, you might win the Simon Lottery!

Saturday April 16th- with guitarist Carl Leblanc at Casa Borrega 7-10:30pm(Oretha Castle Haley Blvd).  Carl is one of the city's great musicians. Dirty Dozen Brass Band, Sun Ra Arkestra, but then his own thing and signature guitar sound and approach- with intelligence subtlety and rhythm.  All severely lacking much of the time these days.

Thursday April 21st- At Allways lounge 9pm with James Singleton, Scott Amendola, Rob Cambre. Always a pleasure to do new things with new people.  Rob Cambre runs a great new series at Allways and seems to be really going an interesting direction by getting groups whose internal mechanics are frequently vastly different from each other- and yet there is a great deal to feel less isolated about here.  Rob plays guitar. James Singleton, the iconic New Orleans bassist. Scott Amendola- plays with the heavies out west.  These days I often hear things described as musical.  I nod my head as if I know what they are talking about. You'll probably hear that description slung around a lot over hear.  That's because the players care about how they sound and the audience seems to like that.  It's an old story that renews every time. Uninterrupted we like the way music feels...

Friday April 22nd- with James Singleton at Zeitgeist Multi-Disciplinary Arts Center -9pm (Oretha Castle Haley Blvd). Playing James's music again. Always a great lineup, and it gets more and more interesting and sensitive.  If you missed the show here last year you get another shot now.  It is a great room.  The important sounds linger in the air a little longer.

Sunday April 24th- with The New Orleans Klezmer All Stars at The Old Arabi Bar. 10pm.  Here is one to catch if, like me, you are interested in more alternative scenarios.  Get down to further out old New Orleans neighborhood, closer than you think and see some far out music in an area far squarer than you know.  But, you can still smoke in that bar, and the egregious interruptions of neighborhoods-coming-up isn't distorting the vision.  The New Orleans Klezmer All Stars with the full lineup including Ben Ellman of Galactic, and Glenn Hartman on accordion, Joe Cabral of the Iguanas on bass.  The way we have had it for years now.

Tuesday April 26th- with The Diesel Combustion Orchestra at Open Ears Music Series 10pm- Blue Nile Upstairs (Frenchmen St.)  Dan Oestreicher, the Baritone sax player from Trombone Shorty's band has this smart outfit.  We will fix your normality good and proper, isolate it, and transport straight into an ice castle at the bottom of the Mississippi river.  You will flip.  There's electronics, heavy exotica and exploration that will cause the catharsis to get you into that life that you wish you could slip away into effortlessly.

Friday April 29th- with The New Orleans Klezmer All Stars at Casa Borrega 7-10:30pm(Oretha Castle Haley Blvd). See above.  This is dangerously close to where we really started to catch hold of the city in 1992.  The food is great and the Tequila flows like wine.  This one is going to kill!

Saturday April 30th-with The New Orleans Klezmer All Stars at The New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival. Join us. Our set is before Stevie Wonder so don't panic. ANd- the secret is, we are not far away from the main stage.  You will experience the newest thing- THE MEYERS. Standby for the album you have been waiting for.

Casa Borrega on all Saturdays in May too! Come on out! Lineups TBA.

Part 1 of an interview with Ryan Scully and Josh Cohen

There has been a long gap since the last interview went up.  Apologies to those who have been requesting more.

We'll kick off the next set with a really great one.  The other parts will follow very soon.

The Morning 40 Federation are a band that has great resonance with a certain swath of New Orleans locals who see in them the embodiment of a certain set of life experiences that very definitely were in fast effect at one time in New Orleans and in a long gone era of a certain way that Bywater used to look.  The reflections from that are still reverberating strongly and the mighty 40s continue on once in a while.  As we find out here, they are still writing.

Ryan Scully is a fascinating music writer that I've been trying to catch up with for an interview since the 90s.  Currently he is also fronting another interesting band, Scully and the Rough 7.

Josh Cohen is a saxophone player and writer for the 40s as well as being crafty in some other areas and, really quite philosophical.  

These folks have amazing insight into the old problem of the correspondence between life and music and, of the folks I have interviewed, they have some of the most unexpectedly profound things to say on the subject.

Alex Mcmurray is often involved in what sometimes becomes a quite multi-layered discussion.

It all happens on the interviews page...


As always, it's also available as a podcast on itunes.

Big Weekend of Music starting tomorrow night...

Busy time here.

Tomorrow night, 11pm, I will be playing guitar for Los Angeles songwriter, RJ Comer, at House of blues, New Orleans.

RJ Comer

RJ Comer

Saturday night, I will be with my own band at Irvin Mayfield's Playhouse in the Royal Sonesta hotel.  Amazing band.  One of the greatest rhythm section in New Orleans musical history-

Rex Gregory-reeds
James Singleton-bass
Johnny Vidacovich-drums
Jonathan Freilich-guitar

Johnny Vidacovich

Johnny Vidacovich

Original music there of course- and some other items from across the last 150 years of mostly local music.

Sunday I will be at Yuki Izakaya for a little Latin dance party.  We are getting back to the old days of Mas Mamones etc.classic Cuban rhythmic music- 

Hector Gallardo- Percussion
Andy Wolf-bass
Jonathan Freilich-guitar

Sometimes know as Johnny "Guitar Mambo" and His Hot Latin Combo.  Back where things started to get rolling in the Latin scene here.  Right inside the door that Hector always used to play on the street in front of.  And in the Cafe Brasil building.  Hector is also one of the greats.  Authentic Cuban, vegetarian, and impeccable Swiss timing.

Andrew Wolf/ Hector Gallardo

Andrew Wolf/ Hector Gallardo

At Yuki with The Jackals

Tonight at Yuki at 525 Frenchmen St.- 8pm til

These days, The Jackals are rare.   Old friends, greater thanks than the sum of parts.  All that kind of thing.  A wild an unpredictable repertoire with great playing all around.

Alex Mcmurray-guitar,vocals
Joe Cabral-bass, vocals
Jonathan Freilich-guitar
Doug Garrison-drums

Come see the group that started that whole Bacchanal thing.  You might get an interesting new hang going.

We will answer the question- "Is a Jackal an Iguana?"