Jive Picks (Week of November 20th)

The Enchanted Forest (LSU Campus) today, 11/19

The Enchanted Forest (LSU Campus) today, 11/19

Hello Baton Rougeans, Happy Thursday!

As per always, it's a beautiful day in BR (even if it's November and Summer refuses to die).

There's a lot happening these days in the city and you don't want to miss out on this weekend's festivities!



Friday, November 19th:

~Ship of Fools + Royal Teeth + Von Mozes @ Spanish Moon. 9pm. $10 cover.

~Nice Dog + Sari + Camp Life @ BRMS. 8pm. $7 cover.

~White Light Night in Midcity. 6pm.

~KLSU A Backyard Beat Affair @ Beauvoir Park. 6pm. $5 cover.

Saturday, November 20th:

~See Schaff Run w/ Motel Radio (formerly Palmyra) and Renshaw Davies @ Chelsea's. 9pm.

~T-Ray the Violinist, Drexal Flowers, James Jackson & Vance Hommes @ Spanish Moon. 9pm.

Have a good weekend and #listenlocalBR

New School Year, New Website, Same Jive

Dear Reader,

We at Jive Flamingo felt like it was time to freshen up our look and usher in a new season. With the start of the Fall Semester, we figured that there was no better time to shake things up.

Who are we?

Jive Flamingo has been serving the Baton Rouge community by providing a calendar and blog since early 2013 and we are excited for what is to come! The Baton Rouge music and arts scene has a lot to offer and we are here so that you know about it. We don’t want you to miss a thing.

Jive Flamingo is a volunteer-run music project dedicated to Baton Rouge. We believe that original music can be the backbone of a solid community, and we know that Baton Rouge is not lacking in artistic and musical talent. We affectionately refer to ourselves as “Baton Rouge’s music cheerleader” because we love to support, encourage, and celebrate all the great things Baton Rouge musicians are doing. We want to see the city of Baton Rouge embrace its arts community and be as proud as we are to call Baton Rouge home.

On our website you can:

●      Read blog posts. We update our blog weekly with fresh content!

●      Access a Calendar. We maintain a weekly calendar that will point you to our hand-selected recommendations for local original music in Baton Rouge.

●      Check out our photo gallery. We are in the process of updating our gallery. Once it is completed, there will be albums of photos from shows in Baton Rouge taken by local photographers like Chelsea Layne, Nick Martino, Jordan Hefler and more! 

Thanks for reading! We hope that you are as excited as we are for all the great things happening in Baton Rouge. Like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter and always #listenlocalBR

Jive On,

Emily Jean McCollister

Jive Flamingo’s Managing Editor

JIVE PICKS (week of august 12th)

IT IS TIME FOR SOME JIVE PICKS! *raises the roof*

It’s a lovely day here in the Rouge and there are amazing musical things happening left and right! Check out our calendar for additional events, get off your couch (it’s comfy, I knowwww) and #listenlocalBR!





"Uncle Flam" says...

Jive Flamingo is very proud to introduce fancy new graphic capabilities-- thanks to our newest team member, Lafayette native and LSU alum, Mr. Tanner Simoneaux. Thanks to Tanner, today "Uncle Flam" reminds you to do your patriotic duty and support our local music community. ONLY YOU can prevent lameness in Baton Rouge.

Look out for more creative work from Tanner on the blog and Facebook page coming soon! And check out his introduction below! 



About Tanner Simoneaux

Tanner is affectionately known by his peers and admirers alike as Tan the Man because he is just that, The Man. The man with the plan, the man with the brand, and the man with the steady hand. With a knack for doodling rivaled only by his limitless creativity, his lifelong quest is to show the real world the imaginary one in his head. Through eye catching visuals, clever wordplay and the best tool of all, humor, he's just a nice dude trying to make the world a little nicer and a little prettier. Not one to drag things out or get long winded, he sums it up quite nicely in his own personal mantra, "Please the eye, provoke the mind"... And that he does, that he surely does. (But don't call him Shirley)

In Conversation with Cafe Au Lait

cafe au lait Between the steady dedication to creativity of Henry Turner Jr.’s Listening Room and the Shaw Center and the fresh offerings at Third Street venues like this Friday’s Water Seed/Cafe Au Lait/ Glamour Profession  line-up at the Roux House, original music has officially taken root in the downtown scene. “I don’t mean to be bragadocious, but we kind of spearheaded that.” Anthony “Tony Phlare” Knighten, bandleader and drummer for New Orleans/Baton Rouge trio Cafe Au Lait, said during my interview with the band on Tuesday. “Yeah, we were there years ago, when it was not popular to be an original band playing on Third Street. We were that band that was splitting up 30 dollars.” Andrew Davis, who plays guitar and synth with the band, reiterated that the downtown scene has really changed, “Mike Foster and John Gray were out there even before us, and they just moved in to Monday nights [a successful weekly series at the Roux House that Jive covered recently].”

Bassist  Lawrence

Third Street isn’t all Cafe Au Lait members Knighten, Davis, and bassist Lawrence “Chief” Ussin, have seen develop over the years.  The three men, who all studied music at Baton Rouge universities and have worked together locally for more than a decade in various configurations, say the city’s music community has come a long way. “It’s like big brothers watching the little guys come up.… I’m proud that Baton Rouge is finally realizing how much musical talent and ability is coming through the city. There are a lot of gifted musicians who are coming out of Baton Rouge right now. I’m thankful, because ten years ago it wasn’t like that.” Knighten reflected.

Cafe Au Lait’s growth as a band in some ways mirrors the larger community’s evolution. Its history began with a predecessor project formed in 2003 called “Category Six,” experimentation with a variety of genres (including gospel, heavy metal, AND gospel with heavy metal elements), a break-up over growing pains, and a coming back together story.  Now, as a “stripped down” trio, the band has found a sweet spot of richness and versatility that can meet any audience where it’s at and get everyone into the groove.  Knighten explained, “It’s funny, because we always try to be on the side of funky with a mix of R&B and jazz in there, but for whatever reason when people come to hear us play, they always come to the conclusion that we make baby-making music.”

Andrew Davis

Davis agreed, “There’s a blending that has to happen, because there’s only three of us. if we all have the same vibe at the same time, it can be a little stale. So, we taking a complementary approach to what we’re playing. I love to play things in a lyrical, smooth, connected a way…. By bringing our different textures it’s a lot easier to fill up the sound.”

Through development of their distinct, individual voices, the members of Cafe Au Lait come together to produce a colorful, well-layered sound. While Knighten drums with what he calls “rhythmic melody” to complement the rest of the band, bassist Ussin brings that “baby-making” funk pulsing through Cafe Au Lait’s songs. When asked, Ussin wouldn’t attempt to explain his musical style: “Most of the players I like are funk, like Bootsy Collins and stuff like that, but it don’t really come out that way. I can tell you who I aspire to be like, but all I can say is that I play like Chief.”

Like the band’s delicious namesake-- “cafe au lait” is a mixture of dark roast coffee, hot milk, half and half-- the trio’s resulting sound is bold and rich with a smooth finish. “Basically, people say Lawrence and I are like one instrument,” Knighten said of he and Ussin’s percussion/bass collaboration. “And Drew [Davis] plays the silky thing.”

Although Cafe Au Lait is a solid standalone act, the band’s versatility has lent itself to numerous collaborations, particularly with vocalists. One night, the band might play an all original set with Michael Liuzza, and the next they may be covering jazz standards with Christien Bold. They even took one of their collaborators, Clif Saint Laurent, with them to their second appearance at the Destination Aquin International Festival in Haiti last April.


When asked about their experience at the Haiti festival, Knighten said “Haiti is our second home. Period.” Davis agreed enthusiastically, “The bookers [of the festival] told us, ‘You’re the first non-Haitian band to play at this festival two years in a row.’” This likely has to do with the deep cultural connection between Haiti and New Orleans. “Haiti spirit is very much like that of Louisiana.” says Knighten. Indeed, Afro-Latino influence, so deeply rooted in the New Orleans music tradition, pervades the band’s music.

Although Davis said the band members “could talk all day” in interview, he invites you to engage in conversation with the band on Friday. Instead of having a pre-planned setlist, Cafe Au Lait gets on stage ready to engage in a “give and take” with the audience.  Knighten elaborated, “We might get somewhere and we’re thinking we need to play a more rocky show, but it all depends on the mood and temperature of the crowd.  We’re reading their emotion and taking and augmenting their emotion... by the time you’re on the third song, you realize that you’re moving without even thinking about it.”

Beyond this Friday, the band is looking forward to sharing new music that reflects all the aspects of its funky personality, anticipating an album release by the first of next year. And “Chief” Ussin, who was the most reserved of the three in the interview, let me know in no uncertain terms to be ready for that day: “All I have to say is, come January 2016, everybody just prepare to get your faces funked off.”

My calendar is marked, Chief.


Catch Cafe Au Lait with Water Seed and Glamour Profession at the Roux House this Friday night. Details here. AND look out tomorrow and Friday for ticket giveaways to this and the Hydrogen Child/Startisan/Breton Sound (details here) concert on the Jive Flamingo Facebook Page!