As we move from the holiday season to Carnival season, there are a lot of great things to do around town. As usual, the Radiators will be at Tipitina’s for their annual winter anniversary reunion. This year the shows run over the 16th, 17th and 18th. These shows are a homecoming for both the band and the fans. It gives everyone involved a chance to see their chosen family after spending an extended time with their relatives. This run of shows has become one of the musical highlights of the year in New Orleans. The Radiators are an important part of our musical heritage and these shows are often packed with guests and friends from their decades-long career. If these shows don’t completely fill your yen for funky jams, you can round out the month with Trey Anastasio at The Civic for two nights. Anastasio is of course best known as the founding singer and guitarist of the jam band Phish. Just like Tipitina’s is the perfect venue for the Radiators, The Civic is a great location for Anastasio. The space will allow you to sit back and let the sounds wash over you.  

The other outstanding January event that we have been tracking here for a while is The Link Stryjewski Foundation charity Bal Masqué. This is such a great party. It is a proper costume ball. Attendees really dress out for the event, with coordinated masks and attire. The food is courtesy of Chefs Donald Link and Stephen Stryjewski (Herbsaint, Cochon, Butcher, Pêche, Gianna and La Boulangerie) and a host of celebrity chefs from around the world. The organizers always bring in some of the best music from around the region capped by a Latin or Caribbean headliner. This year, Tribu Baharu helms the event with support from Nathan and The Zydeco Cha Chas and The Roots of Music. Tribu Baharu’s sound is influenced by the Afro music of Colombian Caribbean cities like Barranquilla, Cartagena and their goal is to convey the joy of being Caribbean through dance, using music as a vehicle: “The intention is to make music to move the skeleton and show the world our version of the Champetúa culture.” Champeta music originated from the “sound system” culture in Colombian’s Caribbean Coast, where mobile discos were essential in spreading their mix of rhythms and influences, such as Colombian folklore, Congolese soukous, Haitian kompa and calypso, among others. Being part of a wave of new Colombian music, the members of Tribu Baharu are frequently referred to as “Champeta Champions.”

Finally, end the month with Baton Rouge’s own outstanding indie pop ensemble Riarosa at One Eyed Jacks. For this show they are accompanied by the excellent local duo People Museum. I’ve been big fans of both of these groups for a while and having them on the same lineup will be a real treat.


Must-See Music 


Jan. 16 – 18

The Radiators jam at Tipitina’s.

Jan. 18

Flow Tribe funks up Republic.

Jan. 19

Spafford jams at House of Blues.

Jan. 24

Billy Strings brings bluegrass to Tipitina’s.

Jan. 25

Mandolin Orange brings the bluegrass back to Tipitina’s.

Jan. 25

Miniature Tigers pop into Gasa Gasa.

Jan. 29

Armin Van Buuren moves the Fillmore.

Jan. 31- feb. 1

Trey Anastasio jams at The Civic.

Jan. 31

Perpetual Groove jams at Tipitina’s.

Jan. 31

Riarosa with People Museum and Mosquito Eater dream at One Eyed Jacks.

Dates are subject to change; email or contact him through Twitter @Minima.