Strong opinions, weakly held

Treme episode 7 essential reference

Sorry for the late posting of this week’s reference. I’ll blame it on Lost fatigue.

This week’s episode was the toughest yet. We saw examples of two ways to die in the aftermath of Katrina. The first was death while in police custody, and the second was the death of the older trombone player. His story reminded me of Clarence ‘Gatemouth’ Brown, the famous bluesman who passed away shortly after the storm in September, 2005.

Of course be sure to check out the New Orleans paper’s installment of Treme explained for this week, which has lots of information about the housing projects that were at the center of this week’s episode. It also explains the context of the “green dots” reference.

Patrick Jarenwattananon interviews Josh Jackson about this week’s episode for NPR.

Both outlets discuss Cajun music, which finally got a little screen time this week. Tipitina’s was previously mentioned on the show, and this week the Pine Leaf Boys played their gig there.

The New Orleans Musicians’ Clinic organized the jazz bands in the airport. The clinic is a worthy cause, it provides health care services to musicians, most of whom have incomes well south of the poverty line.

We’ve seen a lot of the ugly side of law enforcement in Louisiana on Treme, but it’s not all bad. The other day I saw an article on a prisoner-staffed hospice program at Angola prison that has transformed it from one of America’s most violent maximum security prisons to one of the least violent.

Finally, the scene where Albert Lambreaux was arrested while squatting at the projects reminded me of the lyrics to Mardis Gras Indians chant “Indian Red,” featured heavily in episode 3:

We won’t bow down
Down on that ground
Because I love to hear you call my Indian red

You don’t have to use your imagination to figure out where those lyrics came from.

1 Comment

  1. A sad postscript to the Gatemouth Brown story: He was buried in an unmarked grave in Orange ,Tx and it remained that way for 3 years. In 2008 Hurricane Ike flooded the Hollywood Cemetery and Brown’s casket floated away. It took quite some time before Brown was re-buried in a marked grave.

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