When writer/rabble-rouser Laura DeFazio talks about her WHIV 102.3 FM radio show, “Musicians, Mentors, and Barroom Heroes,” she usually describes it as, “like being in your living room, if your living room was Checkpoint Charlie’s.” If you’ve ever spent a night out at Frenchmen Street’s most notorious dive bar, you’ll find this album is like throwing in your laundry, ordering a High Life, and tuning in to the crazy.
This two-disc highlights album cobbles together fragments of two years’ worth of songs, stories, inside jokes and memories from the show’s rowdy cast of characters, who often come bearing squirrel, alligator, rabbit and catfish dishes to share. It has some great musical performances and stories from folks you’ll be familiar with if you’ve spent any time hanging around New Orleans in the last 20 years. Folks like Jamey St. Pierre, Red DeVecca, Nervous Duane, Mike Darby, Curtis Casados, Judy Hill, Big Chief Kevin Goodman, Pizza Mike, Shawn Williams, and probably one of the last recordings of Washboard Lissa Driscoll. Just to name a few. It’s a time capsule and an incredible act of documentation, meticulously liner-noted and edited by show host and frequent OffBeat contributor Laura DeFazio. All album proceeds go to supporting WHIV and the New Orleans Musician’s Clinic.