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The Best of the Beat 2007

For the second year in a row, you love Trombone Shorty.

At the Best of the Beat January 12, we again presented the Performer of the Year Award to Troy Andrews, who also won the award for Best R&B/Funk Band along with Orleans Avenue. This year, our readers also voted Galactic’s excellent hip-hop experiment From the Corner to the Block as the Album of the Year.

We gave the awards at the House of Blues as part of our yearly extravaganza, which this year included great sets by James Singleton, the Thelonious Monk Institute Jazz Ensemble, Amanda Shaw, Roddie Romero and the Hub City All-Stars, the Preservation Hall Jazz Band, the Zydepunks, Davell Crawford, Big Blue Marble, Clint Maedgen and the Special Men’s tribute to Ernie K-Doe, the Valparaiso Men’s Chorus, Cyril Neville and Wardell Quezergue’s New Orleans R&B Revue.

Quezergue was the man of the hour, receiving OffBeat’s Lifetime Achievement in Music, then performing a set of his classics with vocalists Tony Owens, Jean “Mr. Big Stuff” Knight, Shannon McNally and Dorothy Moore. McNally’s haunting “Sea of Love” and Moore’s beautiful, show-stopping “Misty Blue” were two of the night’s highlights, but there were so many. Bassist Singleton accompanied himself on trumpet. The Soul Rebels killed. Maedgen’s version of K-Doe’s “Reap What You Sew” was heartbreaking. Cyril started Mardi Gras early with a set of Indian music and brought onstage the Wild Tchoupitoulas. The Valparaiso Men’s Chorus was a brilliantly woozy spectacle as 20 or so men struggled to fit on the Parish stage and drunkenly sing sea shanties.

We thank everybody who helped make the Best of the Beat happen: Harrah’s Casino—who hosted our Wednesday night Business and Individual Achievement Awards—the House of Blues, and the rest of our sponsors—Miller Lite, Capital One Bank, the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival and Foundation, WWL-TV, and Renew Our Music and the Ponderosa Stomp Foundation for the Quezergue tribute. We also appreciate the restaurants that contributed food for Saturday night: Cochon, Galatoire’s, Jacques-Imo’s, Mat & Naddie’s, the Gumbo Shop, La Cote Brasserie, the Praline Connection, Slice Pizzeria, Juan’s Flying Burrito, Nirvana, Hookah Café, EAT New Orleans, Whole Foods Market, Le Citron Bistro, Hubig’s Pies, Dickie Brennan’s Palace Café, the Flaming Torch, Martinique Bistro, Tomatillo’s, and Café Reconcile. Most of all, we thank Louisiana musicians for giving us so much great music, and we thank our readers for coming out to celebrate that music with us. We’re already thinking about next year; we hope you are, too.

LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT IN MUSIC
Wardell Quezergue

LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT IN MUSIC BUSINESS
Roy Shaw

LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT IN MUSIC EDUCATION
Wilbert Rawlins, Jr.

THE HEARTBEAT AWARD
Cynthia Simien

BEST BLUES BAND OR PERFORMER
Mem Shannon & the Membership

BEST BLUES ALBUM
Andy J. Forest: Real Stories of Love, Labor and Other Man-Made Catastrophes (Independent)

BEST R&B/FUNK BAND OR PERFORMER
Troy Andrews & Orleans Ave.

BEST R&B/FUNK ALBUM
Various Artists: Goin’ Home: A Tribute to Fats Domino (Vanguard)

BEST ROCK BAND OR PERFORMER
Morning 40 Federation

BEST ROCK ALBUM
Quintron and Miss Pussycat: Jamskate (Rhinestone)

BEST RAP/HIP-HOP BAND OR PERFORMER
Truth Universal

BEST TRADITIONAL JAZZ BAND OR PERFORMER
Preservation Hall Jazz Band

BEST TRADITIONAL JAZZ ALBUM
Tom McDermott: Live in Paris (STR)

BEST CONTEMPORARY BAND OR PERFORMER
Christian Scott

BEST TRADITIONAL JAZZ ALBUM
Christian Scott: Anthem (Concord Jazz)

BEST BRASS BAND
Rebirth Brass Band

BEST GOSPEL BAND OR PERFORMER
Franklin Avenue Baptist Church Mass Choir

BEST CAJUN BAND OR PERFORMER
BeauSoleil

BEST CAJUN ALBUM
Various Artists: Allons Boire un Coup: A Collection of Cajun and Creole Drinking Songs (Valcour)

BEST ZYDECO BAND OR PERFORMER
Chris Ardoin and NuStep

BEST ZYDECO ALBUM
Curley Taylor and Zydeco Trouble: Nothin’ Feels Like This (Louisiana Soul)

BEST COUNTRY/FOLK/ROOTS ROCK BAND OR PERFORMER
Susan Cowsill

BEST COUNTRY/FOLK/ROOTS ROCK ALBUM
Johnny Sansone: Poor Man’s Paradise (Shortstack)

BEST WORLD MUSIC BAND OR PERFORMER
Vivaz

BEST EMERGING ARTIST
The Eames Era

BEST COVER BAND
The Top Cats

ALBUM OF THE YEAR
Galactic: From the Corner to the Block (Anti-)

BAND OR PERFORMER OF THE YEAR
Troy Andrews

BEST FEMALE VOCALIST
Susan Cowsill

BEST MALE VOCALIST
John Boutte

BEST BASS PLAYER
James Singleton

BEST GUITAR PLAYER
Sonny Landreth

BEST DRUMMER/PERCUSSIONIST
Shannon Powell

BEST SAXOPHONE PLAYER
Tony Dagradi

BEST CLARINET PLAYER
Dr. Michael White

BEST TRUMPET PLAYER
Irvin Mayfield

BEST TROMBONE PLAYER
Craig Klein

BEST TUBA/SOUSAPHONE PLAYER (TIE)
Phillip Frazier
Kirk Joseph
Matt Perrine

BEST PIANIST/KEYBOARD PLAYER
Tom McDermott

BEST HARMONICA PLAYER
Ben Ellman

BEST ACCORDION PLAYER
Terrance Simien

BEST PLAYER OF ANOTHER INSTRUMENT
Theresa Andersson (violin)

BEST CLUB
Tipitina’s

BEST RADIO STATION
WWOZ

BEST RADIO PERSONALITY
Bob French

BEST FESTIVAL
New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival

BEST FESTIVAL OUTSIDE NEW ORLEANS
Festival International de Louisiane

RECORDING STUDIO OF THE YEAR
Piety Street Recording

LABEL OF THE YEAR
Valcour Records

PRODUCER OF THE YEAR
Anders Osborne

BEST RECORD STORE
Louisiana Music Factory

BEST INSTRUMENT STORE
New Orleans Music Exchange

BEST PRO-AUDIO STORE
Guitar Center

BEST STUDIO SOUND ENGINEER
Tim Stambaugh

BEST BOOKING AGENCY
White Oak Productions

BEST MANAGER
Kimball Packard

BEST MUSIC ATTORNEY
Edgar “Dino” Gankendorff

BEST MUSIC PHOTOGRAPHER
Erika Goldring

BEST CLUB OWNER OR MANAGER
Wesley Schmidt and Jason Patterson of Snug Harbor

BEST CONCERT PROMOTER
New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Foundation

MUSIC AWARENESS AWARD
Louisiana Crossroads

MUSIC BUSINESS OF THE YEAR
Rehage Entertainment

Published February 2008, OffBeat Louisiana Music & Culture Magazine, Volume 21, No. 2.