November is rapidly becoming one of the most popular months for festivals and parties that bring together the music and food of New Orleans. Things kick off on the 2nd with the inaugural Abita Fall Fest. This one-day festival will be held at the Abita Springs Trailhead (less than an hour from downtown) and features eight solid hours of music, including performances by Marc Broussard, Flow Tribe, Bruce Daigrepont and more. What I like about this festival is that it is designed to be a non-profit and family-friendly means of getting more people out to explore this beautiful area. Kids under 10 are free, and the music and food will be accompanied by a rock wall, petting zoo, face paining and more.
The very next day, Nov. 3, is the 13th Oak Street Po-Boy Festival. This festival is constantly voted among the top food events in our city. Each year they feature some of the best music the city has to offer (as of press the lineup for this year was not available but we’ll have it in full on the website).
You can keep your streak rolling with Boudin, Bourbon and Beer on the 8th. A bevy of celebrity chefs and mixologists from all over the region descend on Champions Square to present their spin on boudin dishes and bourbon cocktails. These treats are always accompanied by a stellar musical lineup. This year, Trombone Shorty and Orleans Avenue are headlining, with Grace Potter, Fruition and Motel Radio supporting them. It’s all to raise money for Emeril’s foundation—you really can’t go wrong with this one.
If your clothes still fit by the middle of the month, you have two more excellent ways wreck your diet. On the 16th the French American Chamber of Commerce takes over the New Orleans Jazz Museum at the Mint for their Fête des Fromages. This year, the festival has tapped the excellent Gypsy jazz band Harmonouche to kick things off. They’ll be followed by Meschiya Lake and The Little Big Horns, and then Sunpie and the Louisiana Sunspots.
The Fête des Fromages ends in the mid-afternoon which will give you plenty of time to walk up to Armstrong Park for the newly combined forces of the Treme Creole Gumbo Festival and the Congo Square Rhythms Festival. By bringing these two events together, the Jazz and Heritage Foundation has created a two-day event on the 16th and 17th, which combines some of the best food in our city with its best music. Make sure to catch the African drumming and dance events, as well as the Mardi Gras Indian “battle.”
Taken all together this is an unreal collection of some of the best musicians our city has to offer in great locations with imaginative food. We used to talk about November being a bit sleep around here, especially with the Thanksgiving lull at the end of the month, but it seems like those days are well behind us now.
Mavis Staples tips for Tulane at the Fillmore.
Elephant Wrecking Ball rocks Howlin’ Wolf.
Widespread Panic jams at the UNO Lakefront Arena.
Starcrawler rocks Gasa Gasa.
Anamanaguchi pops into One Eyed Jacks.
Angel Olsen brings indie folk to The Civic.
The Raconteurs rock the Fillmore.
This Will Destroy You experiments at Gasa Gasa.
Kero Kero Bonito pops into Republic.
Dinosaur Jr. rocks Tipitina’s .
Elvis Costello brings indie to the Saenger.
Mikal Cronin rocks One Eyed Jacks.
The 1975 rocks the UNO Lakefront Arena.
Dates are subject to change; email Mike@MyNewOrleans.com or contact him through Twitter @Minima.