[TOUR DIARY] NOLA: Part I
We were very sad to be leaving Austin, and the prospect of a full day on a bus to New Orleans wasn't looking entirely promising or exciting. Luckily, whilst waiting in the queue for the Megabus, we met two other bag-laden souls who we instantly got chatting to about ACL and music in general. When we found out they were in a band (The Millburns) and that we were starting a label, an instant bond was formed, one that grew as we shared traveller tales on the bus and stopped for BBQ and a beer.
After a very hazy few hours flying along dark highways on the bus, we said goodbye to our new friends in Baton Rouge, arrived in NOLA at 11pm, and were instantly swept off with our host to celebrate his birthday. We ended up in the recording studio with members of the Rebirth Brass Band, laying down some backing vocals on a track for their side project. Without even a chance to register what had just happened, we were then whisked off to a Karaoke dive bar, where the eccentric bar tender took the stage for every single song, and our inebriated group attempted to stumble our way through Jewel's 'Foolish Games.' What an introduction to the city.
The next morning we roamed around the French Quarter, tried to cure our hangover with beignets and coffee, and sauntered through the warehouse district over to Magazine street in the Lower Garden district. Despite the fact we probably looked and acted like zombies, a friend from the night before chased us down the road and invited us to join them for lunch and a beer. We were adopted by him and his housemate (past member of Early Day Miners), sipped red wine on their balcony as we watched the sun set, had a private tour in their jeep of the area which ended up with cocktails at the Columns Hotel. We then ended the night at the Maple Leaf in east New Orleans dancing away to the Rebirth Brass Band (apparently our new friends), an absolute must-do in NOLA.