A RIVER RUNS BY IT
While St. Francisville is less than a two-hour drive from Lafayette, it would take days to explore its magical places with the same depth and curiosity as Bevil Knapp’s lens. In St. Francisville: Louisiana’s Historic River Bluff Country (LSU Press), the photographer revels in the interplay of light and shadow, distressed wood and craggy brick sun-dappled beneath beneficent live oaks. The slant of light — illuminating a dogwood in its full, frothy bloom or lazy, gauzy Spanish moss — is a recurring theme in Knapp’s rich photography of the West Feliciana town. With an introduction by Danny Heitman, St. Francisville forays north from the town to the plantation homes mainly along the Mississippi River — Live Oak, Rosedown, The Myrtles, they’re all represented — and even makes a quick pass through Angola State Penitentiary. St. Francisville is positively and precisely antebellum, and in that sense it is timeless. This welcome addition to the coffee table retails for $34.95 and is available at all major booksellers. — Walter Pierce
Composed of ex-members of The Good Captain, the dudes in The Botanist take a detour away from the funk that characterized their former band and head down the Heavy Dude Rock Highway. Their debut CD About Ghosts lays out a Southern noir landscape of highways, darkness, full moons, monsters, ghosts, the devil, and a host of other useful cinematics that lend themselves to heavy rocking tunes by dudes looking to rock freely and transcend the monosodium cold hash of bad trips. Don’t try to bring down their Sagittarian stroll; they’ll beat you back with weighty doses of prog riffery and fables of the desert moonchild sun star. It’s that kind of darkness that illustrates this disc. Hey, they even have a moody acoustic bongo tune on this thing reminiscent of the junk-tinged languor of Layne Staley. Buy it at: www.myspace.com/thebotanist. — Dege Legg
HALL OF FAME
New Orleans hot jazz stalwart Preservation Hall Jazz Band has assembled a dream list of collaborators for its latest album, simply titled An Album to Benefit Preservation Hall & The Preservation Hall Music Outreach Program. Tom Waits lends his raspy baritone to revitalize the early Mardi Gras classic “Tootie Ma is a Big Fine Thing” and Danny Barker’s “Corinne Died on the Battlefield.” Ani Difranco revs up “Freight Train,” Merle Haggard gets “Basin Street Blues,” Yim Yames of My Morning Jacket tries on “Louisiana Fairytale” and “St. James Infirmary,” while Angelique Kidjo and Terrence Blanchard guest on “La Vie en Rose.” All 18 tracks were recorded live at Preservation Hall. The album is available through most major music outlets or online through preservationhall.com. — Nathan Stubbs
State Rep. Lenar Whitney — one of a handful of Republican candidates vying for Louisiana’s 6th Congressional district — has been described by Cook Political Report analyst David Wasserman as one of the most “frightening or fact-averse candidate[s]” he’s ever met following her reaction to an interview last week.
West coast casual
Mid-August hearing dates have been set for dueling lawsuits over Louisiana's use of the Common Core education standards in public schools.
An investigation into the last-minute passage of a pension hike for the state police superintendent continues, despite Col. Mike Edmonson's decision not to accept the increase.
Four bedroom traditional Youngsville home or three bedroom traditional Broussard home
On Tuesday, a three judge panel (voting two to one) of the U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals struck down as unconstitutional Mississippi’s controversial law requiring that physicians who perform abortions maintain admitting privileges in a nearby hospital.
Safety Jairus Byrd practiced with the New Orleans Saints on Tuesday for the first time since his signing in March.
Sentencing has been delayed for a businessman who provided key testimony in the corruption case that resulted in the conviction of former New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin.
The spectre of priest sex abuse has returned to haunt the Roman Catholic Diocese of Lafayette following the recent release of an investigative report by Minnesota Public Radio, revealing new allegations of another child predator hiding behind the clerical collar.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
Wednesday's Blogs from the Bog!
A ballpark snack topped with BBQ meat can be found cruising town on a food truck
Times Square impersonator crackdown; Israel shells Gaza school; Russia hit with sanctions and more national and international news for Wednesday, July 30, 2014.
"Although the administration is moving forward with climate change regulations at home, we don't consider how policy decisions in the United States impact greenhouse gas emissions in other parts of the world," says Roger Martella, the former general counsel at the Environmental Protection Agency under President George W. Bush.
Louisiana agriculture officials say prices for long-grain rice are projected to drop this year.
First-time claims for unemployment insurance in Louisiana for the week ending July 19 decreased from the previous week's total.
A judge is getting ready to set a new trial date for a former BP executive charged with obstructing a congressional investigation into the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill.
The sponsor of a Louisiana law that requires doctors that perform abortions to have hospital admitting privileges doesn't believe the provision is in jeopardy after a federal appeals court struck down a similar Mississippi law.
Louisiana's state school board has jumped into a lawsuit against Gov. Bobby Jindal that accuses the governor of illegally meddling in education policy through his efforts to block Common Core education standards.
Here's how one nationally recognized conservative political pundit reacted upon hearing the news Monday that the U.S. Chamber of Commerce was leaning toward an endorsement of Louisiana’s lone Democrat senator.
If President Barack Obama’s poll numbers, and those for his health care law, haven’t yet bottomed out in the Bayou State, then Democrats surely don’t want to know what the statistical floor actually looks like.
Midsouth Bank has released its second quarter earnings report, showing a year-over-year increase for shareholders.
The comeback of the Wayfarer
Two bedroom New Iberia ranch style house or two bedroom Lafayette condo
The deadline to purchase tickets for the 2014 ABiz Top 50 Business Luncheon featuring top-selling author, political activist and Harvard law professor Lawrence Lessig is only two weeks away.
With the qualifying deadline for Lafayette Parish School Board elections quickly approaching, a series of candidate forums have been announced by the Lafayette Parish Public Education Stakeholders Council.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
The investigation and potential prosecution of the man charged in the recent hit-and-run death of a Youngsville cyclist won’t happen overnight, according to local law enforcement officials.
Louisiana's state school board is holding a special meeting to consider whether to sue Gov. Bobby Jindal in an ongoing dispute over the Common Core education standards.
A bipartisan congressional deal to help improve veterans' health care access includes approval for new veterans clinics in Lafayette and Lake Charles.