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Dr. John Celebrates Satchmo

Monday, March 26, 2012

New Orleans innovator Mac Rebennack, a.k.a. Dr. John, joins us to talk about his tribute to his hometown’s guiding spirit, Louis Armstrong, this week at BAM. Plus,  we discuss his upcoming album, “Locked Down,” which was produced by Dan Auerbach of the Black Keys.

Do you have a question for Dr. John? Leave it in the comments section below.


Dr. John

Comments [13]


michael B- what are you smoking ?

Mar. 27 2012 11:38 AM
MichaelB from Morningside Heights

All a bunch of cliches of half-baked truths... as if Jazz had only one set of roots. Of course Jazz had roots in spirituals, but it was also based on the European tonal system (or doesn't that matter?) and there were strong influences of British Isles folk music/folk dance music (such as Scottish folk tunes.)

They DON'T share the same sensibility, they don't sound the same, there is a different harmonic aspect, different rhythms ... they just feel totally different. Aside from all that, they're identical (not!)

Jazz always has a smile on its face, even if it's a sad smile. At best, Rock has a smirk and at worst, a scowl. Different. Sensibility.

The comparisons don't hold up, but they are repeated ad nauseum by the music industry and their apologists because they are determined to somehow raise the status of rock and give it some kind of artistic legitimacy by continually linking it to Jazz.

Bogus and I ain't buying.

Mar. 27 2012 10:23 AM
Howard Novotny from Hudson, WI

Dr., It's been a while since wehave had the pleasure of your company in Minneapolis. Any Dakota dates in the future?

Mar. 26 2012 08:08 PM
Tom Shumaker from Parkton, MD

This particular Dr. has been in my house since about 1969. Thanks so much for posting this podcast,'cause I can't never enough of the RRHOF Night Tripper!!

Mar. 26 2012 06:19 PM
AndyGP from Toronto

@allwhocommentonswingvsrock, both forms come from the Afro-American spiritual, a form which DJ is very familiar with. The spiritual can either swing or rock (listen to modern concert spirituals like those of Moses Hogan or Robert L. Morris), and oddly they can feel like both are happening at the same time. Also, it is authentic to let either one just come from the energy of music making. Descendants of African slaves would do just that. I wouldn't doubt that Armstrong rocked sometimes too, but he recorded to his niche. Tool is a prog rock band, but that doesnt stop them from jamming classic rock and freeform jazz.

Mar. 26 2012 06:18 PM

so, we'll assume that music is relegated to a boxed in definition,RT? categories are fine,and so are definitions. but,there are very few things that i'll set in stone. i understand, what you're saying about rock and jazz;but,i think it's silly, to want to put dr john in either one;or, to of necessity think, that jazz has to swing, or that rock can only,well,"rock". i win by TKO...........

Mar. 26 2012 04:25 PM
MichaelB from Morningside Heights

"Swing" as its known, is the essence of a good amount of Jazz -- most of it for at least half of its age. Every musical idiom has something that makes it unique -- that allows us to distinguish it from other idioms.

Don't water it down with sloppy comparisons to other forms. Jazz doesn't "rock" and rock doesn't swing. All you have to do is REALLY listen to either form to tell they don't share either aspect with each other.

But if it makes you feel good to say they do, then knock yourself out.

Mar. 26 2012 03:30 PM

@ michael B- who in the world told you that there was just one way to swing ?

Mar. 26 2012 03:00 PM
MichaelB from Morningside Heights

Sorry Siouxie, I appreciate Dr. John's music, but he doesn't swing. That's rock, and rock does NOT swing. It ain't the same idiom as what Satchmo played. Ever, either way.

Mar. 26 2012 02:35 PM
Siouxie from Bronx

Dr. John always swings (like Louie). Very much appreciating the show today.

Thanks from da Bronx

Mar. 26 2012 02:25 PM
MichaelB from Morningside Heights

Have we heard anything about Pops yet? Other than that's why the good doctor is in NY this week?

Mar. 26 2012 02:24 PM
Richard from New York

Always great to hear you Mac. Will you be up at Levon's for any of the Rambles this year?

Be well, and merci beaucoup.

Mar. 26 2012 02:13 PM

dr. john: if you did not have the hit, "right place, right time", [sorry if that's not the actual title of the song]do you think that your career, would have been significantly different? you've made great music,that for the most part, is not, big time commercially viable;not that that means a bloody damn thing. love your work sir

Mar. 26 2012 02:06 PM

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