Ponderosa Stomp’s tribute to Wardell Quezergue @ Alice Tully Hall, NYC – pics (Dr. John, the Dixie Cups & more)
photos by Jacob Blickenstaff
"Arrangers don't get noticed much. Like cinematographers, they usually fill in the structures and concepts of others: songwriters and producers, who call on arrangers to deploy horns, strings or other sounds that might unobtrusively improve a song. But people who read album credits recognize that Wardell Quezergue, a working musician since 1953, is the rare exception: an arranger whose long career reveals him as a consistent catalyst of New Orleans R&B, and not just because he shares the songwriting credit on a ubiquitous New Orleans song, "It Ain't My Fault."
At Alice Tully Hall on Sunday night [7/19], the Lincoln Center Festival allied itself with the Ponderosa Stomp Foundation -- the New Orleans record collectors-turned-promoters who find the musicians behind the obscure singles -- to present a tribute to Mr. Quezergue. His wryly understated arrangements for horn sections in particular, drawing on local parade traditions and big-band jazz, often prod, tease or talk back to a singer and a song, with a chortling layer of syncopation that has helped define New Orleans rock... [NY Times]
To quote the official linuep, the show featured "R&B icons The Dixie Cups and Robert Parker; soul greats Jean Knight, Dorothy Moore, Tammy Lynn, and Tony Owens; legendary New Orleans drummer Zigaboo Modeliste; New Orleans musician, producer, and session man Mac Rebennack (Dr. John); garage-music pioneer Michael Hurtt; plus Wardell Quezergue's Rhythm & Blues Orchestra, an all-star ten-piece band led by Quezergue himself in a rare New York appearance." More pictures from the event, below...
Wardell Quezergue (facing band) and his Big Band
The Dixie Cups
Dr. John / Mac Rebbenack
Zigaboo Modeliste (drums) performing Hey Pocky Way with Dixie Cups and Tammy Lynn
Dixie Cups with Dorothy Moore
Dr. John (guitar)
Zigaboo Modeliste and Band
Raymond Jones and Brian Quezergue
Michael Hurtt (r) and Dr. John
Wardell addressing the audience
finale (Big Chief)