Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue | Carolina Theatre | Clubs & Concerts | Indy Week
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Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue 

When: Mon., May 11, 8 p.m. 2015
Price: $30-$156.90



CAROLINA THEATRE, DURHAM—Troy Andrews came by his nickname naturally: After picking up the trombone at age 4, he was undeterred by the logistical challenges of moving its slide with a preschooler's limited wingspan. To hit the low notes, he used his feet. By 6, he led classmates in his own brass band and busked regularly in New Orleans' Jackson Square. Trombone Shorty was born.

He began playing internationally as a pre-teen, and hometown gigs made fans out of Bono and The Edge. After training at the New Orleans Center for the Creative Arts, where he met members of his Orleans Avenue band, he spent his teenage years with the Stooges Brass Band and as a touring member of Lenny Kravitz's horn section.

Now, at 29, Trombone Shorty is a giant of New Orleans music. Last Sunday, after playing his biggest hometown show to date at the historic Saenger Theatre, he closed down the city's Jazz Fest for the third consecutive year. He took over the coveted main stage slot traditionally reserved for the legendary Neville Brothers, a move that confirmed his role as a generational bridge between the city's musicians. Between Jazz Fest's two busy weekends, he threw the third annual Shorty Fest, a gala benefitting his foundation's efforts to promote music education and heritage in New Orleans.

"Jazz Fest is like our Super Bowl," Shorty said just before the closing appearance. "We will be playing the big game. Then we are going to take the show on the road for a minute and bring a little bit of Jazz Fest wherever we go."

Indeed, Shorty has emerged as an unofficial ambassador for the Crescent City, called upon to perform when heavyweights like Eric Clapton, Green Day and his old friends in U2 need a little New Orleans. He also played himself in Treme, the acclaimed HBO series named after his childhood neighborhood. This year, he reimagined The Odd Couple theme for CBS and penned his own children's book. His albums with Orleans Avenue have been nominated for Grammys and topped Billboard's jazz charts with a mix of New Orleans traditions and high-energy rock, funk, hip-hop, soul and R&B. 8 p.m., $30–$60, 309 W. Morgan St., Durham, 919-560-3030, —Spencer Griffith

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