New Orleans | Texas Public Radio

New Orleans

New Orleans Begins Reopening

May 16, 2020

New Orleans began allowing some businesses and churches to reopen — or expand their operations — in a limited capacity Saturday.

When the subject of jazz comes up, the name Marsalis is soon sure to follow. Brothers Branford, Wynton, Delfeayo and Jason have all reached international fame. But before they found success, their father Ellis was shaping his own career and lighting the way for others to follow.

The entire staff of The New Orleans Times-Picayune was laid off last week after the paper and its website were sold. Some staffers may be rehired by the new owners, but it’s the latest sign of a news industry in turmoil. Here & Now‘s Jeremy Hobson talks with Derek Thompson (@DKThomp), senior editor at The Atlantic.

On a sunny Thursday afternoon in May, the corner of First Street and LaSalle in New Orleans' Central City neighborhood was lively. Kids tooled around on bikes and grown-up neighbors danced to the sounds of DJ Jubilee and Al Green, spun onstage by DJ Mannie Fresh, the producer whose exceptional skills put Cash Money Records on the map back in the '90s. The party was hosted by PJ Morton — a native New Orleanian and the keyboardist for Maroon 5 — who followed Fresh's set with a long, jammy performance of his song "New Orleans Girl," including both a bounce verse and a trombone solo.

Jessica Watkins

New Orleans drummer Johnny Vidacovich says the endless stream of parades that take place in the Crescent City inspired him to become a musician at a young age, and he remembers his first paying gig:

“I was playing in a kid band, [wearing] derby hats, and I think the first amount of money we made was about three-fifty, four dollars. It wasn’t five dollars! I’ll tell you that much, it wasn’t five.”

As an adult, Vidacovich went on to work with the likes of Professor Longhair, and the long-running Astral Project.

Courtesy photo

Drummer Herlin Riley has been playing the drums since he was a toddler. The sound and feel of his native New Orleans is in his soul, and on the bandstand. “The rhythm of a particular area identifies the culture of the city, you know, whether it be [in] Cuba whether it be Jamaica, whether it be Africa. When you hear certain rhythms you can identify a certain culture. And so New Orleans is very, very strong in its culture.”

A decade ago, Hurricane Katrina threatened to wash away much of Riley’s native city.

Our Hosts Enter A Fiesta Food Coma

Apr 16, 2018
Nathan Cone / Texas Public Radio

In this episode of TPR’s official* Fiesta podcast, hosts Asia Ciaravino and Angela McClendon Johnson spin the “Wheel of Fiesta Foods” and reminisce with watered mouth about their favorite snacks.

Then Robby Turner talks about the San Antonio Zulu Association’s “Taste of New Orleans,” and chef Vida Floyd of Jewell’s Catering brings her signature gumbo to TPR studios for Asia and Angela, dishes on all things Cajun food, and shares this essential Fiesta tip for good eating: Don’t wear lipstick. You too, guys.

After workers pulled more than 40 tons of Mardi Gras beads out of New Orleans' storm drains, the city decided to take action. They've installed "gutter buddies" to keep carnival detritus out of the drainage system.

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit


New Orleans Revives 1894 Tabasco Opera

Jan 25, 2018

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit


OK. Tonight, the New Orleans Opera celebrates its 75th anniversary with a performance that can best be described as spicy.


NEW ORLEANS OPERA: (Singing) Tabasco, Tabasco, the sauce that we all do love so.