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Benjamin Booker, “Witness” (ATO Records)

When OffBeat last checked in with then New Orleans–based rocker Benjamin Booker, he was riding high on the success of his self-titled debut album. Born from local punk shows, 2014’s […]

Water Seed, “We Are Stars” (Independent)

“Open Sesame,” the first track on Water Seed’s fifth album, isn’t the Kool & the Gang club hit from the early Seventies, but that’s not for lack of trying: The […]

King James & the Special Men, “Act Like You Know” (Independent)

If one song could encompass everything great about New Orleans music… Well, it would have to be a really long song. “9th Ward Blues,” which closes King James & the […]

John Michael Bradford, “Something Old, Something New” (AFO)

The title of this debut by trumpeter and vocalist John Michael Bradford, Something Old, Something New, accurately describes the music within and his continued interest in both traditional and modern […]

Tom McDermott, “Five Lines No Waiting: Limericks & Sketches” (Sagging Shorts)

In his work as a composer and pianist, Tom McDermott has held a long fascination with the rag, a song structure popularized in the late 1800s and early 1900s. As […]

Various Artists, “American Epic: The Collection” (Lo-Max/Third Man/Legacy)

American Epic: The Collection seems destined to win a Grammy award for best historical album. A box set in a bound book format containing five CDs and 100 recordings, The […]

Deltaphonic, “See Red” (Independent)

Two years ago, Deltaphonic’s debut full-length debut, Texas Texas, came out of nowhere to redefine, despite its title, that distinctly New Orleans blend of blues, rock and funk that rules […]

Bobby Watson, “Made in America” (Smoke Sessions Records)

Made in America offers some terrific blowing by alto saxophonist Bobby Watson heading an all-star band with bassist Curtis Lundy, pianist Stephen Scott and drummer Lewis Nash. It also provides […]

Willie Nelson, “God’s Problem Child” (Legacy Recordings)

Willie Nelson released his latest album, the wise and warm God’s Problem Child, on April 28, the day before his 84th birthday. Like any great album, it works as a […]

Blato Zlato, “Swamp Gold” (Independent)

Even in a city that’s renowned for combining everything with everything else, this one’s a little surprising. Blato Zilato bill themselves as a band putting a Cajun spin on Balkan […]