Re-opened again two years ago after being shuttered since Hurricane Katrina, the Joy Theater takes another leap forward with the announcement today that the former movie house turned live performance theater will offer a series of Jazz Fest week night shows this year. With the resurgence of historical theaters re-opening over the past year along Canal Street and within downtown’s core, this could very well mean even more seats at even more night time shows during Jazz Fest. And the Joy seems to be heading up the Canal Street strip with Jazz at the Joy 2014.
Huka Entertainment presents the first show in the “Jazz at the Joy” series on Thursday, April 24 with an exclusive Jazz Fest concert featuring west coast surf-rock band Slightly Stoopid. A favorite on the national festival circuit, the eight piece outfit based in Oceanside, CA carries the torch for the famed group, Sublime, which folded upon frontman Brad Nowell’s untimely death in 1996, at the height of the surf-rock craze. Slightly Stoopid was discovered by Nowell just one year before his death, and the band signed to Nowell’s record label, Skunk Records. The two bands shared the unique ability to blend psychedelic rock with reggae, punk, blues, funk, ska, hip-hop and folk in a sonic reflection of the “left coast’ surf lifestyle that reaches some of the most diverse audiences.
Sublime and Stoopid performed and released independent records together until Nowell’s death in 1996. Though rocked by Nowell’s death, Stoopid pushed the surf-rock movement forward through their releases on 1998’s Skunk Records box set and extensive touring. In 2001, Slightly Stoopid began a string of releases, both self-released and published on other imprints, that climbed Billboard charts and scored the band prime slots at many of the nation’s most popular music festivals such as Lollapalooza, Austin City Limits, Coachella and the New Orleans Jazz Fest.
Official Jazz Fest veterans, the band often returns to New Orleans for shows full of local surprise guests, laying heavy on the funk. Crescent City adoptee and saxophonist Karl Denson is one of Stoopid’s core members, maintaining Stoopid’s intimate connection with the New Orleans scene. Local keynotes like Ivan Neville and members of Dumpstapunk are known for appearing with the band on regular hits in town, as are members of Denson’s Greyboy All-Stars, shared Galactic collaborators such as Chali 2na, as well as any Grateful Dead or P-Funk players that might also be in town. In short, Slightly Stoopid shows in New Orleans, especially during Jazz Fest, are always epic all-star jams.
The April 24 concert will mark Slightly Stoopid’s first show at the new Joy Theater and will kick-off the Joy’s new series. Tickets are $27.50 in advance and go on sale Friday, January 31 via Huka Entertainment and the Joy Theater. The show is ages 18 and up, doors are at 7 p.m. and showtime at 8 p.m., with special guests to be announced in the coming weeks. For more information, visit www.hukaentertainment.com.
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