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Tank and the Bangas: More Good Music from New Orleans

Things sometimes have a nice way of coming full circle. Some time ago, my daughter suggested that Tank and the Bangas would be a good subject for a post at TDMB. I put the band on the list I keep.

tank-and-the-bangas
Tank and the Bangas

While thinking about what I would post today – nominally Friday is new music day – I visited WFUV, the radio station of Fordham University in the Bronx. Tank and the Bangas was featured on the home page. That jogged my memory.

One of the big stories in popular music this month is that The great New Orleans musician Dr. John passed away. I found that Tank and the Bangas is from New Orleans and that they met at an open mic in the Algiers section of the city.

Algiers — the 15th ward of the city — is the only one of the west bank of the Mississippi River. Wikipedia says that it was home to many of the original jazz musicians. It was, by the way, known as the Brooklyn of the south because both are separated from what is considered the center of their respective cities by rivers.

It seems fitting to post new music from New Orleans. It’s remarkable how much great music has come – and continues to come – from the city. (The same can be said for food.) Tank and the Bangas play a very different type of music than Dr. John. But they are linked by where they come from.

I am going to leave a post about Tank and the Bangas with something else entirely: A video of the second line parade for Dr. John. I have a feeling that they wouldn’t mind.

Here is Tank and the Bangas album Green Balloon at Amazon and at iTunes.

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Carl

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--A Tribe Called Quest to The Dick Hyman Trio (In other words, A to H)

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Reading Music

The stories of the great bands and musicians are fascinating. Musicians as a group are brilliant, but often troubled. The combination of creativity and drama makes for great reading.

Here are some books to check out.

Duke Ellington brought class, sophistication and style to jazz which, until that point, was proudly unpolished and raucous. His story is profound. The author, Terry Teachout, also wrote "Pops," the acclaimed bio of Louis Armstrong. Click here or on the image.

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What else is there to say? Here is the story behind every song written by The Beatles. Click here or on the image.

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The Grateful Dead don't get enough credit for the profound nature of its lyrics. Many of the band's songs are driven by a deep and literate Americana ("I'm Uncle Sam/That's who I am/Been hidin' out/In a rock and roll band" and "Majordomo Billy Bojangles/Sit down and have a drink with me/What's this about Alabama/Keeps comin' back to me?").

David Dodd's exhaustive study tells the story, song by song. Click here or on the image.