styles. And as a musician, you’re sort of called upon to know how to play all of them. Everything from traditional jazz to contemporary jazz, to rhythm and blues, to funk, to gospel, to country. You go to these gigs as a young musician and you don’t know what type of music you will be playing or who is going to be there. One day you could show up and it’s a classical piano gig, another day [former Washington, D.C. mayor] Walter Washington is there. That gets real deep into your bones, not to mention the indigenous style of New Orleans. With different rhythms and instrument configurations, you hear music down there that you just don’t hear anywhere else. You’ve lived in the New York area for a while now. Yes, and there is a lot I love about New York. My mother is from here and I moved up—let’s see, 30 years ago—and I had family up here for a long time. So for many years I have felt a strong connection with this city, largely because I used to come up here as a kid with my family to see shows and go to the restaurants. I still get some of the same nostalgic feelings that I did when I was a kid.
PHOTO: NINO MUÑOZ
In your opinion, what are the differences between New York and New Orleans culture? Well, I think one of the differences is the pace of the lifestyle. People in New York are normally going to and from work at a pretty high rate of speed. New Orleans is a much slower pace; people have a tendency to be more conversational when they see you. That might have something to do with the weather, the proximity to the Caribbean, lots of things. New York is a huge metropolis and New Orleans, although it has a substantial downtown, has more of a laid-back, smallertown feel to it. What’s your go-to restaurant in town? Any spot in particular? Man, I just ate at Fresco by Scotto the other night: That was tremendous. So many great restaurants here! From John’s of Bleecker Street pizza to Le Bernardin to Mario Batali’s places—Eataly and Esca to name two. It’s impossible to pick a favorite—I love so many of them! IN NEW YORK | JANUARY 2016 | INNEWYORK.COM
12/9/15 1:15:54 PM
Published on Dec 16, 2015
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