are part of the new renaissance and lucky for us, they play Friday, April 27th at

WHO: Backbeat Foundation Presents
WHEN: Friday, April 27th @ 10 p.m.
WHERE: The Temple @ 619 Carondelet St, – A gorgeous venue Backbeat initially took over in 2011 that’s only open as a venue during . A rare treat to see a show like this in a special venue.
PRICE: $22 (BUY)

WHY: On the night of my first visit in years ago, one young band caught my attention above all other acts (a that included , The Whites and the late-great Porter Wagoner). The North Carolina-based trio called the Carolina Chocolate Drops, made up of Justin (fiddle, banjo, vocal), (banjo, fiddle, vocals) and Don Flemons (guitar, banjo, harmonica, jug, snare and vocal) were a striking outfit, in large part thanks to Giddens’ amazingly alluring vocal presence. These musicians wielding old-timey, beat up instruments were breathing new life into folk youthful vigor and learned passion. The unique, albeit brief set still sticks out years later.

Since that night four or five years ago, the trio has been making major waves nationally, booking gigs like a ’10 and this year’s , signing Nonesuch Records (, & ), all while helping to revive the old-time African-American string band music that used to be a tradition in black rural communities of the South. And if that ain’t enough, took home its first Grammy in 2010, winning Best Traditional Folk Album for the 2010 record Genuine Negro Jig.

In light of the recent renaissance, which has seen previously obscure artists like and Mumford & Sons painted gold and platinum and smaller bands like , and The experiencing a continuous rise in popularity, it’s no surprise that this band has been so well-received in recent years. While Americana is a broad brush to paint CCD with, this recent revival and expanded appreciation for the kind of treasured and timeless sound that Carolina Chocolate Drops wields has brought them to bigger stages like the Opry and, for our intents and purposes, an extra special performance in for to kick off ’s 7th Annual Jazzfest concert series.


Writer + Photogger, LMB | Relix | CoS | NolaVie