Sunday, May 30, 2010

The Sound of Music Hurts

The Sound of Music Hurts

For musicians in New Orleans post-Katrina, a job is a job, unless you’re Antoine Batiste. Full of embarrassment, initiative and grief in the most recent episode of “Treme,” the weight of Antoine's unstable music career bears down heavily on the trombone player who desperately wants his big break. An impromptu concert with Antoine and other freelance musicians takes an interesting twist, when award-winning jazz musician Troy “ Trombone Shorty” Andrews joins the group. He plays alongside Antoine. As if the unspoken competition between the two men wasn’t enough to bruise Antoine’s pride, the death of his mentor brings him to tears.

Davis on the other hand has no reason to cry. The joke of a political campaign he sporadically organized gets steam from his popular theme song and carefree approach to possibly being elected. His bid for office ironically develops into an opportunity of a different kind. A judge makes the wannabe city councilman an offer and without hesitation, Davis accepts. However, as anyone knows with politics in New Orleans, Davis's compromise could turn out to be as rewarding as eating nails.

Chief Lambreaux eats more than his ego and pays a painful price for his decision to defy an order to vacate an apartment in the Calliope Housing Projects. His act of civil disobedience leads to an altercation between police and the bullheaded chief. I’m sure you can guess what happened when police entered the apartment and closed the curtains to keep news cameras from capturing the encounter. Lambreaux put himself in the delicate position of breaking the law because he wants the city to open the concrete housing development to residents longing to come home.

Creighton longs for a day when the country will respect New Orleans and its recovery efforts. In what is his routine since the beginning of “Treme,”the Tulane University professor spends his time composing video diaries on YouTube. His content amounts to insults and innuendoes that criticize and strategically targets everyone from president George Bush to New Orleans mayor Ray Nagin, for the Katrina-fatigue the country seems to comprise. Creighton’s disgust jumps off-screen at you as he spews every vicious word he can muster to send his message to anyone who’ll listen. He is still, however, falling further behind on the novel Random House wants.

What are your thoughts? Do you think Creighton will finish the novel? Is Lambreaux doing the right thing? Will Davis regret his decision? What’s Antoine’s future?

For more on “Treme” and to catch up on previous episodes, scroll down and read other blog entries. The show does not air tonight.

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