For the 24th year, the United States Postal Service is creating a Jazz Fest postal "cachet," a a highly collectible, commemorative mailing envelope featuring a New Orleans musical icon and a silver embossed Jazz Fest logo. Past honorees have been Mahalia Jackson, the Marsalises, the Nevilles and many others. This year's cachet features Kermit Ruffins. The 2012 Jazz Fest postal cachet will be unveiled in a ceremony this Thursday, April 26, at Cafe Istanbul (2732 St. Claude Ave.), at 11 a.m. The event is free and open to the public.
The soundtrack to Season 2 of Treme revels in the abounding riches of New Orleans music today. Here are brass bands, roots rock, traditional jazz, R&B and Cajun music, with a special nod to the city's piano tradition (with Henry Butler, Jon Cleary, Dr. John, Tom McDermott, David Torkanowsky each prominently featured). Also included is the once-in-a-lifetime collaboration between neo-funksters Galactic, the iconic Dirty Dozen Brass Band, and rapper Juvenile. Recorded live on the streets and in the clubs, New Orleans music does not get any more real than this.