Update: The protest march originally planned for December 28 has been postponed due to weather. We will report back with any announcements made of a rescheduled date.
On Christmas Day, Glen David Andrews posted a poignant message to his personal Facebook page to bring attention to what he claims is unfair and financially unjust treatment of musicians by the French Market Corporation.
According to Andrews, the French Market Corporation has been selling spots to street performers. “The French Market Corporation wants a street Musicians to pay $150 to reserve a spot,” he wrote, adding “what street musicians can afford to spend $150 out of pocket to pay for a spot on a city street. How is this legal? How is that fair?”
Saying he’s been performing in front of Aunt Sally’s Praline Shop since 1986, Andrews claims musicians “will be stopped” and “maybe get a ticket” if they perform there. That hasn’t been the case for the last three decades, he claims, adding “The French Market Corporation nor the City of New Orleans charged us to perform there.”
Andrews also took the French Market Corporation security team to task, claiming they have stopped bands from performing but continue to allow break dancers and the electric guitar player in Jackson Square, whom Andrews calls “louder than a 12 piece band.” In particular, he says two security guards cursed at an entire band of performers, which the band took as a threat directed at Hot 8 Brass Band trombonist Jerome “Bay Bay” Jones.
Andrews writes, “I for one don’t feel at all comfortable to have people with this type of attitude with any kind of weapons, weather it be a knife, Gun ,Mace as I know all to well a African American Male can mysteriously end up dead.”
He closed his statement with the following announcement: “MARCHING FRIDAY AT NOON ON THE FRENCH QUARTER CORPORATION OFFICES STARTING IN JACKSON SQUARE WE’RE ASKING AL MUSICIANS PLEASE COME OUT AN JOIN US THIS AFFECTS US ALL. NEXT THEY’RE GOING TO BRING UP THE NOISE ORDINANCE AGAIN GET READY IT’S COMING.”
Andrews returned to social media to announce more details of the protest, which you can see in the screenshot below. Please note that “Fri Dec 27th” is a typo and Andrews means December 28.