1. GYPSY OVERDRIVE
Call it operatic, gypsy world music or Euro-freak folk, but the quasi-European, Fishtank Ensemble kicks out a fiery mix of vaudevillian ragtime, Parisian folk, and hambone chicken scratch. Fueled by a Transylvanian twin fiddle attack, they formed in 2005, playing everywhere from hipster clubs in L.A. to folk festivals to street busking hoedowns. Their CD Samurai Over Serbia contains 13 tracks of all the above hybrids plus a few songs that some might describe as high-octane, gypsy bluegrass. Not sure if that makes any sense. But it’s definitely different … and pretty interesting music. Buy it at www.fishtankensemble.com.
— Dege Legg
2. WEAR A TIARA
If you’ve ever succumbed to the temptation to rubber-neck the road wreck that is America’s beauty queen culture, The Rhinestone Sisterhood (Crown Publishing — a fitting imprint) will have you from the first two words: Chelsea Richard. That’s Richard as in Ree-shard — a nerve-racked Cajun girl from the Acadia Parish countryside vying, in the opening pages of the David Valdes Greenwood’s new book, to be the next Frog Queen and reign beatifically over the annual Rayne Frog Festival. Greenwood’s tome, as the subtitle indicates, is a tour of small-town America as seen through the bejeweled eyes of its tiara-wearing femme fatales, and as the author notes early, “If you want to find America’s small town festival queens, the best place to look is Louisiana.” Acadiana’s queens of crawfish, cattle, buggies and mayhaws populate this fun, funky celebration at the nexus of blind ambition and heavily rouged discomfiture. The Rhinestone Sisterhood retails for $25 and is available at most book sellers and on-line. — Walter Pierce
A year ago, Jeremy Broussard debuted his documentary film, Little Houses, about a mysterious and unique burial tradition of the Acadian settlers. Small, above-ground houses still stand in the Istre cemetery, the remnants of a folk tradition that once filled graveyards in Acadia, Evangeline and Vermilion parishes. Broussard’s film explored the lost tradition, and raised money and awareness to help restore the last three remaining grave houses. Expanding on his film, Broussard, along with photographer Gwen Aucoin, has produced a small book, Grave House Legends, which continues to explore the folkways and burial traditions of the Cajun people’s ancestors. Little Houses will screen Wednesday, April 21, at 6 p.m. as part of Soirees du Cinema at the Acadiana Center for the Arts. Grave House Legends will be on exhibit as well, and can be purchased, $14.95, from TheLittleHouses.com, or at Amazon.com. Proceeds go toward the preservation and restoration efforts of the last three remaining Cajun grave houses.
— Mary Tutwiler
New menu items ready for the Lenten season
The Cane Fire Film Series screens “MaidenTrip” on Monday, March 10, at the AcA.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
The vibe of the tribe done modern
The Louisiana Workforce Commission said Friday that initial claims rose to 2,125 from the previous week's total of 1,964. There were 2,887 initial claims during the comparable week in 2013.
The Board of Elementary and Secondary Education has stalled action on a $3.5 billion annual school funding formula due to state lawmakers by March 15.
The New Orleans Saints have yet to make it official as of this writing, but popular wide receiver Lance Moore has reportedly been cut by the team to free up salary-cap space on the roster.
While two medical marijuana bills are slated for the upcoming legislative session, what some Louisianans might not know is that the plant was approved for therapeutic use by state lawmakers in 1991.
The agenda is shaping up to be lighter than in previous years. But Jindal is term-limited, with fewer than two years remaining in office, and he saw his last big initiative — a proposed rewrite of Louisiana tax law — collapse without getting a vote in 2013.
Sharper has been held without bail because of an arrest warrant issued by Louisiana authorities accusing him and another man of raping two women.
Here's your daily look at late-breaking national and international news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about Friday, March 07, 2014:
Two Lafayette men have been revealed by police as the infamous duo behind a caper that shook our fair city to its core.
She’s the daughter of the legendary Johnny Cash, but she’s been a gifted artist in her own right for three decades, and she’s coming to Lafayette.
The Lafayette Parish School Board has received a second letter of demand related to last year’s insurance debacle, this time from Key Benefit Administrators claiming it’s owed $93,000 from the school system.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
The Louisiana coastline is vanishing faster than mappers can keep track.
A bill that would have overridden local ordinances prohibiting public and private employers from discriminating against lesbian, gay and transgender people has been pulled within less than a week of being filed.
The panel that selects nominees for a controversial New Orleans area flood control board — a board that is suing more than 90 oil, gas and pipeline companies — is set to discuss legislation affecting its independence.
State prison officials cannot keep secret the seller and manufacturer of the two drugs purchased for executions at the Louisiana State Penitentiary, a federal judge ruled Wednesday.
State lawmakers will not appeal a judge's ruling that it was improper to use $3.7 million from a probation and parole officers' retirement fund to balance the state's operating budget.
Prepare yourselves for sun
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
Conservatives have been losing their minds over this satirical bit on the Colbert Report.
Due to the chaos of Mardi Gras and the weather, the entry deadline for this year's INDesign Awards has been extended by one week.
The Lafayette Parish School Board leaves a lot to be desired, but is scrapping the election process in favor of an appointed board the answer?
Queen Evangline and King Gabriel ruled Tuesday night
The House approved legislation Tuesday night to roll back a recently enacted overhaul of the federal flood insurance program, after homeowners in flood-prone areas complained about sharp premium increases.
IND Style does Gabriel
Newsy bits for the fam
The NFL has formally designated New Orleans' Jimmy Graham as a tight end for the purposes of his franchise tag value, which is now set at $7.05 million next season unless Graham and the Saints subsequently agree on a long-term deal.