CD  Kelcy Mae (real name Kelcy D. Wilburn) has just released her second full-length album, Pennies in Hand. Wilburn’s lilting vocals set against soulful – sometimes mournful – instrumentation, replete with jaunty banjo and ukulele, synthesize a charming aural canvas, blending components of bluegrass, back-country ballads and modern rock. A Shreveport native, Wilburn relocated to New Orleans as an undergraduate, and has been writing and singing here ever since.

JOURNAL  The memory of Louisiana photographer Fonville Winans is evoked in Cruise of the Pintail: A Journal. Edited by Winans’ son Robert, with commentary by James R. Turner, Cruise recounts the voyages of the elder Winans in his early 20s. He and his trusty mates set sail through the waterways of southern Louisiana hoping to become millionaire filmmakers and stave off adulthood, recording their observations as seen through the post-adolescent-male lenses of parties, girls and good times.

Children’s  Writer Cornell Landry and illustrator Sean Gautreaux bring Carnival to life in vivid purple, green and gold in their new book Happy Mardi Gras. A prancing jester tells an abridged version of the history of Mardi Gras, from its Old World origins to its incarnations in the western hemisphere. Landry and Gautreaux cover all the Crescent City mainstays, from King Cake to doubloons to the names of the krewes, and finish with a reminder that during Lent, we’re “forced” to eat seafood. (Shucks.)

History  New Orleans- and Washington, D.C.-based historian (and Rising Tide author) John M. Barry is releasing a new history study this month, Roger Williams and the Creation of the American Soul: Church, State and the Birth of Liberty. The historical narrative tracks theologian Williams’ life and work as he chafes against theocracy and neo-theocracy, both in Great Britain and the American colonies, and eventually founds Providence.

Please send submissions for consideration, attention: Alex Gecan, to 110 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Suite 123, Metairie, LA 70005.