Category Archives: New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival

Spirits on Bourbon…Proud home of Tim Buie’s Piano Entertainers Convention 2017

 Tim Buie’s 2nd Annual Piano Entertainers Convention will converge on the French Quarter at Spirits from March 26-29.

pianossss tim

JOIN DUELING PIANO PLAYERS, GREAT PIANISTS, PIANO BAR OWNERS, AND MORE ON INFAMOUS BOURBON STREET FOR FOUR DAYS OF LIVE PERFORMANCES, MASTERCLASSES AND SEMINARS WITH CELEBRITY SPEAKERS, CELEBRATIONS OF NEW ORLEANS CULTURE AND JAM SESSIONS!

The convention is both an informational and networking opportunity for those in the business. There will be classes, seminars, celebrity speakers and live auditions for those in the business. It’s a great opportunity for musicians, entertainers, club managers, owners, and agents to get together and learn from one another discussing all topics in the field.

Seminars will include classes by

Liberty DeVitto, Billy Joel’s long time Drummer

Bob Baker, #1 Music Guru and Social Media Expert

Dr. Clark Rosen Vocalist Throat Specialist

Marty Richardson Owner/Pianist Savannah Smiles Dueling Pianos

susan

The event will include a Crawfish Boil at Spirits during check in on Sunday as well as a very special charity event. Beginning Sunday at 8pm. Spirits will be open 24 hours for the duration of the convention with DUELING PIANO MUSIC featuring some of the WORLDS MOST ENTERTAINING MUSICIANS playing LIVE at Spirits for 24 hours a day from March 26-29.

In addition to our great staff of musicians at Spirits on Bourbon, performances will include:’l

Billy Joel’s long time drummer Liberty DeVitto,

Dr. Dirty John Valby #1 Comedic and Parody Specialist in the World

Long Island’s own David Clark

Award winning singer/songwriter Chris Foster

Piano Bar Diva Susan Erwin

World Renowned Dueling Pianist Tom Basler

All these great talents and more will converge on Spirits on Bourbon for this 24 hour 4 day event.

Steve Smith, Spirits on Bourbon, “I can’t wait to host the 2017 Piano Entertainer’s Convention.  It’s a great opportunity for musicians from around the world to learn and network with the best in the business. It’ll also be a huge treat for our customers who will reap the benefits of having all this talent under one roof for 4 days. We are going to have great shows 24 hours a day for the entire event. It’s my hope that we can expand this convention into a Festival!!”

Brad Bohannan, Spirits on Bourbon, “With our already great crop of entertainers at Spirits, partnering with Tim Buie and his Piano Entertainer’s Convention was a no brainer. We are so proud of our staff of entertainers and we can’t wait to host this event”

Tim Buie, World Famous Piano Entertainer, “Spirit’s is a a natural host for our 2nd annual event. In the heart of Bourbon St and already with tremendous talent on staff. It’s going to be a great 4 days at Spirits”.

Please Visit PIANO ENTERTAINERS CONVENTION WEBSITE FOR MORE DETAILS!!!!!

 

 

 

Voodoo Experience 2016 lineup is out!

Voodoo Experience has revealed its 2016 lineup. The three-day music festival takes place at New Orleans’ City Park over Halloween weekend (October 28th – 30th). Spirits on Bourbon hopes that you make Voodoo Experience and Stop in to Spirits on Bourbon for great food,drinks and entertainment while you are in New Orleans. 
Tool, Arcade Fire, The Weeknd, G-Eazy, The Chainsmokers, Band of Horses, Cage the Elephant, Kevin Gates, Die Antwoord, Porter Robinson, Carnage, Foals, Rebelution, Excision, Gramatik, Ghost, Tory Lanez, STS9, Mutemath, Puscifer, Les Claypool’s The Claypool Lennon Delirium, Alison Wonderland, DJ Mustard, Beats Antique, Snails, Melanie Martinez, Anderson .Paak and the Free Nationals, Reignwolf, Preservation Hall Jazz Band, Mayer Hawthorne, Charles Bradley and his Extraordinaires, Shakey Graves, Slander, What So Not, Snakehips, Bob Moses, Saint Motel, Wild Belle, Bully, Nothing But Thieves, Oh  

 Wonder, Chairlift, The Pretty Reckless, Party Favor, Lunice, NF, Bear Hands, Black Tiger Sex Machine, ASLl Them Witches, Lookas, Lost Kings, 4B, Sir the Baptist, Cheat Codes, Slaves, Leon, The Eagle Rock Gospel Singers, The Seratones, Cakes Da Killa, Little Scream, Sonny Alven, The Breton Sound, Carmine P. Filthy, Babygirl, Kidd Love, Unicorn Fukr, Herb Christopher 

 

2016 Jazz Fest lineup is out

The New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival has revealed its 2016 lineup. Now in its 46th year, the mammoth two-weekend event takes place April 22nd – 24th and April 28th – May 1st at New Orleans’ City Park.  

Headliners include Pearl Jam, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Neil Young + Promise of the Real, Stevie Wonder, Paul Simon, Van Morrison, Beck, Steely Dan, Elvis Costello & The Imposters, and My Morning Jacket. 

 Other notable acts include Ms. Lauryn Hill, Janelle Monáe, Snoop Dogg, Dr. John & the Nite Trippers, Gary Clark Jr., Mavis Staples, Bonnie Raitt, Herbie Hancock & Wayne Shorter, J. Cole, Gov’t Mule, Bozz Scaggs, Michael McDonald, The Isley Brothers, Preservation Hall Jazz Band, Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue, Grace Potter, Johnny Lang, Tedeschi Trucks Band, Aaron Neville, Nathaniel Rateliff & the Night Sweats, Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings, Rhiannon Giddens, The Lone Bellow, and Buffy Sainte-Marie, among others.

The full day-by-day breakdown and ticketing information can be found via the festival’s website.

Half Way 2 Halloween NOLA Horror Film Fest was held at Spirits On Bourbon.

  Spirits on Bourbon was honored to Host the 5th annual Half Way 2 Halloween NOLA Horror Fest.   

The group of filmmakers, actors, authors and fans  

 joined us at Spirits to screen three horror movies, including Timothy, Grave Shivers, and Blood Punch. Johnny Rock was the MC for the event with his Wolfman costume, keeping everything on track! 

  They had many local venders showing off some local goods. We also had some local authors signing books.  


  The costume contest was a big success with prizes from CD’s to a grand prize of a Mr. Binky’s shopping spree! Steve Smith said he thought about going home and getting his halloween costume on to win some of the prizes!
The event was a huge success and Spirits on Bourbon looks forward to making this a yearly event! Brad Bohannan.

Featured Spirits on Bourbon Dueling Piano Player: Sam Joyner

Sam Joyner

Sam Joyner

It’s time for Jazz Fest, but that isn’t the only place where you can find great live music. We have talented dueling piano players who perform at Spirits on Bourbon on a nightly basis. Throughout the week we will be featuring our dueling piano players who perform at Spirits on Bourbon in a multi-part series on our blog.

Sam is originally from the Chicago area but has traveled the United States and the world extensively during his music career. He returned to the states five years ago after having traveled throughout North- and Southeast Asia for the past 25 years where he was primarily based on the island of Saipan, where the average temperature during this time was no less than 86 degrees Fahrenheit.

When Sam made the decision to come back to the states, two factors influenced his decision to come to New Orleans: the warm subtropical climate and the music.

See Also: Featured Spirits on Bourbon Dueling Piano Player: Amanda Walker

“When I returned to the states I knew I couldn’t go back to Chicago or any place that resembled cold,” Sam said. “I was thinking about going to Memphis, but even Memphis was too cold after being in 86 degrees every day. New Orleans was the logical choice because I could play music.”

Sam has been playing piano for about 46 years professionally. His playing style spans several genres. He cites a wide range of musical influences, but cites a particular set of musicians within certain genres. He cites Ray Charles, Bob Marley, Ramsey Lewis, Stevie Wonder. Within reggae, there is Jimmy Cliff and Bob Marley; for jazz there is Sonny Stitt, Jimmy Smith, Ramsey Lewis; in rock and roll there is ZZ Top; in pop music there is Stevie Wonder.

When describing his style, Sam gives it a mixture of “the North and the South”, blending Chicago, Memphis and New Orleans styles of music.

This is not his first dueling piano gig. Like with most dueling piano players at Spirits on Bourbon, Sam came from he now-defunct Bourbon Street club Howl at the Moon. Sam was invited by fellow dueling piano player TJ Zino to come to Spirits. When his contract at Bourbon Oh! expired, he came to Spirits. He will have played one year at Spirits in July.

The dueling pianos run every Monday from 3 p.m. to 1 a.m.; Tuesday and Wednesday from 8 p.m. to 1 a.m.; Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 4 p.m. to 2 a.m.

Get to know what’s happening at Spirits on Bourbon by following us on Facebook and Twitter @SpiritsonBourbo

Featured Spirits on Bourbon Dueling Piano Player: Amanda Walker

Amanda Walker

Amanda Walker

It’s time for Jazz Fest, but that isn’t the only place where you can find great live music. We have talented dueling piano players who perform at Spirits on Bourbon on a nightly basis. Throughout the week we will be featuring our dueling piano players who perform at Spirits on Bourbon in a multi-part series on our blog.

Now it’s time to introduce a true gem to our dueling piano line-up. Amanda Walker is one of our dueling piano players, but you’d never guess that she also holds a degree from Tulane Law School.

Originally from Missouri, Amanda came down to New Orleans after receiving an acceptance to Tulane Law, graduating in 2006. Amanda still practices law, but only on the side here and there for some friends. However, piano is her real passion.

See Also: Featured Spirits on Bourbon Dueling Piano Player: Amanda Walker

Amanda became a part of the Spirits dueling piano line-up after fellow Spirits player John Autin, who runs New Orleans Piano Maniacs, called her one afternoon and asked her to join. She enthusiastically agreed, but plays only one day out of the week: Saturdays from 4 to 9 p.m. However, if you look around town, you will find her performing at other venues, such as the Old Point Bar in Algiers.

Despite having over 30 years of piano experience under her belt, this is Amanda’s first dueling piano gig. She is, however, no stranger to performing on stage.

“That’s why I took the gig, because it seemed like something fun to try,” she said “It’s been really fun to go up there and play whatever people request. It’s quite an eclectic mix. That’s what makes it fun.”

Being an all-request dueling piano show on Bourbon Street, Amanda will play anything from Toby Keith to Eminem to Lynyrd Skynyrd on any given night. Being so versatile is makes Amanda, and all of our dueling piano players at Spirits, so talented and why we have them on stage.

If you’re all Jazz Fested-out and just happen to be hanging out on Bourbon Street on Saturday afternoon, drop by Spirits on Bourbon, say hello to Amanda and buy her a drink!

The dueling pianos run every Monday from 3 p.m. to 1 a.m.; Tuesday and Wednesday from 8 p.m. to 1 a.m.; Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 4 p.m. to 2 a.m. – See more at: http://spiritsonbourbon.com/blog/?p=465#sthash.lXevzJXF.dpuf

The dueling pianos run every Monday from 3 p.m. to 1 a.m.; Tuesday and Wednesday from 8 p.m. to 1 a.m.; Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 4 p.m. to 2 a.m.

Get to know what’s happening at Spirits on Bourbon by following us on Facebook and Twitter @SpiritsonBourbo

Featured Spirits on Bourbon Dueling Piano Player: TJ Zino

TJ Zino

TJ Zino

It’s time for Jazz Fest, but that isn’t the only place where you can find great live music. We have talented dueling piano players who perform at Spirits on Bourbon on a nightly basis. Throughout the week we will be featuring our dueling piano players who perform at Spirits on Bourbon in a multi-part series on our blog.

TJ Zino is originally from Rockville Centre in Long Island, New York. He began piano lessons at the age of five years old, training in classical piano but quickly became bored with his instructor.

“Who wants to play I’m a little teapot?” he said. “I wanted to play something like the Top Gun theme song or something like that or the Rocky theme song, which was big when I was little.”

See Also: Featured Spirits on Bourbon Dueling Piano Player: Steve Monroe

Featured Spirits on Bourbon Dueling Piano Player: Steve Monroe – See more at: http://spiritsonbourbon.com/blog/?p=447#sthash.byPjWOg1.dpuf
Featured Spirits on Bourbon Dueling Piano Player: Steve Monroe – See more at: http://spiritsonbourbon.com/blog/?p=447#sthash.byPjWOg1.dpuf
Featured Spirits on Bourbon Dueling Piano Player: Steve Monroe – See more at: http://spiritsonbourbon.com/blog/?p=447#sthash.byPjWOg1.dpuf

After a no less than a six-month hiatus, TJ restarted his piano training, but taking lessons from sheet music he would acquire over the years. Fast-forward 30 years and he has traveled everywhere, performing gigs all over the country. He played at a casino in Las Vegas, played in Connecticut and even held a dual position of bartender and dueling piano player on the now-defunct Big Easy River Boat Casino, which was docked in the Port of Palm Beach at the time.

Like man of the dueling piano players at Spirits on Bourbon, TJ formerly performed at Howl at the Moon on Bourbon Street, which has since closed. He was searching for a new home when him and fellow dueling piano player John Autin stumbled into Spirits shortly after the filming of Bar Rescue and convinced owners Brad Bohannan and Steve Smith to have a live piano show.

“Spirits took us in when we were looking for a home,” TJ said.

There is a lot more work to becoming a dueling piano player than meets the eye. Describing it as a “negative curve”, TJ says that dueling piano players must know hundreds of songs. “You wake up in the morning and you’re learning tunes until you collapse,” he says.

Most importantly, they need to know the “A-tunes” or hit songs that get the most reaction out of people. They are songs that they must know word-for-word because nearly everyone in the audience knows them like that too.

In addition to performing at Spirits, TJ is also part of the dueling piano phenomenon New Orleans Piano Maniacs along with fellow Spirits performers John Autin and Steve Monroe.

TJ is a pretty upbeat guy and there isn’t a moment when you won’t catch him smiling. His method of working a crowd is to play to the guy who looks like he’s having the worst time in the room. “If I can get him to have a good time, then everybody else follows.”

The dueling pianos run every Monday from 3 p.m. to 1 a.m.; Tuesday and Wednesday from 8 p.m. to 1 a.m.; Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 4 p.m. to 2 a.m.

Get to know what’s happening at Spirits on Bourbon by following us on Facebook and Twitter @SpiritsonBourbo

Featured Spirits on Bourbon Dueling Piano Player: Steve Monroe

Steve Monroe

Steve Monroe

It’s time for Jazz Fest, but that isn’t the only place where you can find great live music. We have talented dueling piano players who perform at Spirits on Bourbon on a nightly basis. Throughout the week we will be featuring our dueling piano players who perform at Spirits on Bourbon in a multi-part series on our blog.

“I haven’t always been that serious about piano but I never quit,” said Steve Monroe, one of Spirits on Bourbon‘s dueling piano players.

With over 47 years of piano playing experience, it’s hard to actually believe that Steve doesn’t take his craft seriously, but maybe he’s just being modest. Nearly half a century of experience is nothing to shake at stick at. But, he adds, it gets to be more fun because he gets better at it. He was, after all, a piano and voice major while studying music in graduate school at the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana.

See Also: Featured Spirits on Bourbon Dueling Piano Player: Todd Adams

Steve originally hails from Columbia, Missouri, moving away when he was 25 years old. Like all of the dueling piano players at Spirits (and all talented musicians), he has his fair share of performing and traveling experience. To date, Steve has been performing at Spirits for about one year.

Steve duels with nine other piano players at Spirits. His taste in music is expansive, from jazz to classical to opera and even rock and roll. It helps to know music like Steven knows music, since it enables to him play almost any request you like, from Fats Domino to Miley Cyrus. Hell, this guy can even put a Snoop Dogg tune to ivory. Playing on Bourbon Street is good because the shifting crowd keeps Steve on his feet with a constantly changing line-up of requests.

Steve is not one to just sit back and play songs. Part of his job as a dueling piano player (as with other dueling piano players at Spirits) is to interact with the crowd, challenge them, maybe sling a few ad hominems and to just get the audience to sing along. The purpose is to just get people to have fun. “We’ll call people out and talk to the audience, tell them a dirty joke just to get some sort of response and try to play songs that they know so they can sing along,” he says.

He will usually start off with something like “Bad, Bad Leroy Brown” or “Brown Eyed Girl”, something that everybody knows so they can sing along to the chorus.

Besides playing piano, Steve knows a thing or two on the guitar and bass.

The dueling pianos began at Spirits about a year and a half ago, shortly after appearing on Spike TV’s Bar Rescue. So far it has been a huge success. Don’t knock the music just because they play only covers, all of the piano players are solid musicians.

“We have some of the most talented players in the business,” said Spirits owner Steve Smith. “In a city with many great musicians as New Orleans, our guys often get overlooked because of the nature of the cover song show that we do. They are true professionals at their craft and play to a packed Bourbon Street house every night.”

The dueling pianos run every Monday from 3 p.m. to 1 a.m.; Tuesday and Wednesday from 8 p.m. to 1 a.m.; Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 4 p.m. to 2 a.m.

Get to know what’s happening at Spirits on Bourbon by following us on Facebook and Twitter @SpiritsonBourbo

Featured Spirits on Bourbon Dueling Piano Player: Todd Adams

Todd Adams

Todd Adams

It’s time for Jazz Fest, but that isn’t the only place where you can find great live music. We have talented dueling piano players who perform at Spirits on Bourbon on a nightly basis. Throughout the week we will be featuring our dueling piano players who perform at Spirits on Bourbon in a multi-part series on our blog.

The weekend may be finished, but we are are still in throes of Jazz Fest. While there is still live music happening all over the city, we have dueling pianos–our own brand of musicianship here at Spirits on Bourbon and some great talent to go along with it. In this blog, we feature Houma-based piano player Todd Adams.

As previously mentioned, Todd is originally from Houma, Louisiana, about a little over an hour’s drive southwest of New Orleans. Todd was immediately attracted to a career in music at a very young age but he never envisioned being a piano player. He grew up playing the drums, learning in the fifth grade. At 15 he began playing in a rock and roll band.

See Also: Featured Spirits on Bourbon Dueling Piano Player: Jim Lockwood

Eventually playing piano became a part of Todd’s repertoire. He has been playing piano for over 30 years. Before playing at Spirits, he spent nearly a decade performing at a club in Houma. He has toured with several bands during his career, even playing with Cajun Zydeco musician and Grammy winner Wayne Toups, who also happens to be performing at this year’s Jazz Fest.

Aside from performing at various clubs on Bourbon Street, Todd has toured all over the United States (35 out of 50 states), as well as toured all over Europe and in New Zealand. It was while he was on tour that Todd met his wife.

Todd met Spirits owners Steve Smith and Brad Bohannan through John Autin (who also performs at Spirits) and immediately signed up for dueling pianos. It just so happened that he was contacted by a fellow musician friend almost immediately after watching the Spirits episode of Bar Rescue. Todd has been performing at Spirits since March. He plays on Sundays and Tuesdays beginning at 8 p.m.

The players take requests from the audience for tips. The way this works is pretty simple: the higher the tip, the more likely the song will be played. And tips can trump each other too. For instance, a $10 tip trumps a, lets say, $3 or $5 tip. Usually, each player will finish a song before playing the next, but if an audience member throws down a $20 for a song, more than likely the players will stop in the middle of the current song and play that request immediately.

At Spirits, we have dueling piano players perform two at a time on stage. They don’t exactly duel, but play together. One sings and plays while the other provides backing music and they take turns. They also take requests from the audience. Todd breaks down how the request system works at Spirits:

“We have pads and pens in the audience and anything you want to hear just write it down and send it up to us, hopefully with a little love. The five- and ten-dollar songs always get played before the one-dollar songs and the one-dollar songs get played before the zero-dollar songs. So when we get to them, we play everybody’s request. But the financial hierarchy dictates what we play.”

And as far as $20 songs and above? They get played immediately.

Come see our dueling piano players at Spirits. It’s a highly interactive show and we promise that you will not be disappointed.

The dueling pianos run every Monday from 3 p.m. to 1 a.m.; Tuesday and Wednesday from 8 p.m. to 1 a.m.; Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 4 p.m. to 2 a.m.

Get to know what’s happening at Spirits on Bourbon by following us on Facebook and Twitter @SpiritsonBourbo

 

Featured Spirits on Bourbon Dueling Piano Player: Jim Lockwood

Jim Lockwood

Jim Lockwood

It’s time for Jazz Fest, but that isn’t the only place where you can find great live music. We have talented dueling piano players who perform at Spirits on Bourbon on a nightly basis. Throughout the week we will be featuring our dueling piano players who perform at Spirits on Bourbon in a multi-part series on our blog.

The players take requests from the audience for tips. The way this works is pretty simple: the higher the tip, the more likely the song will be played. And tips can trump each other too. For instance, a $10 tip trumps a, lets say, $3 or $5 tip. Usually, each player will finish a song before playing the next, but if an audience member throws down a $20 for a song, more than likely the players will stop in the middle of the current song and play that request immediately.

When a guest would like to hear a song, they must write down the request on a piece of paper provided to them and place it on the piano.

See Also: Going to Jazz Fest? Check Out Our Dueling Piano Player Josh Sharrard

Jim Lockwood is a New Orleans original, although he has spent some time in Tennessee before eventually moving back home. Jim began his music career as a singer and guitar player, touring up and down clubs along Bourbon Street.

His guitar career came to a tragic end one day when his pick finger became pinned between a wall and a piece of heavy equipment he was helping to move at his side job at a moving company. The weight smashed his finger, causing a fracture down the bottom length of his index finger. The healing process left him with such a limited range of movement that he could no longer play guitar.

Piano became Jim’s bread and butter and now has over 30 years of experience under his belt. He began performing at Spirits a little over a year ago. Jim is no stranger to performing on Bourbon Street. With his experience playing on Bourbon Street over the last several decades, he can say with authority that Spirits is one of the best–if not the best–place at which he performs.

“The owners at Spirits set the example of how Bourbon Street clubs should treat their musicians,” he said.

According to Jim, the function of the dueling pianos is two-fold: to provide entertainment for the guests and play for tips.

So if you just happen to need a music fix even after Jazz Fest is over, swing by Spirits on Bourbon and show our piano players some love. They begin performing on stage at 8 p.m.

The dueling pianos run every Monday from 3 p.m. to 1 a.m.; Tuesday and Wednesday from 8 p.m. to 1 a.m.; Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 4 p.m. to 2 a.m.

Get to know what’s happening at Spirits on Bourbon by following us on Facebook and Twitter @SpiritsonBourbo