Drummer/vocalist Richard Graham brought his taste of New Orleans to Music in the Park, on a cold, rainy night, during the last week of performances. He put together an excellent group of local musicians that can be seen playing in many different genres in the interior.
Veterans Jon Treichel on guitar and Neil Brun on electric bass showcased their talents throughout the night. They were real standouts on some of the funkier numbers. Young Alex Ward on keyboards (recently seen playing double bass with Anita Eccleston) channeled his inner Ray Charles, once or twice and was a solid addition to the band. Trumpet player Graham How, did a marvelous job playing the part of Louis Armstrong, Al Hirt and countless other horn players, from the Crescent City.
Bandleader Richard Graham, the consummate showman, drummed and sang his way across the Louisiana soundscape. A poor turnout because of the weather did not dampen the talents of the Bourbon Street Backbeat. Some of the highlights were “Georgia on My Mind,” “Do You Know What it Means to Miss New Orleans.” and Graham delightfully funked up a Bill Evans song. This fine group provided a pleasant evening of New Orleans music bringing to mind Fats Domino, Ray Charles, Al Hirt and countless other ghosts floating over the Mississippi delta and the bayous of Louisiana. Just maybe, they were also floating over Riverside Park that evening.