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Welcome Peeps!

Welcome to the official site of New Orleans' own heavy blues band JMMBs. The new record "Never Trust The Living" was recorded studio live in the heat of the summer 2014 and will be out in the spring of 2015.

New Music for 2015!

If you saw us recently and could not tip due to your mind being blown (HAHAHA)...feel free here!

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Road to the New Record

The Move to New Orleans - Part III - New Arrivals 

Living in New Orleans is like living in another world in a lot of ways. It's kinda isolated down here and very european for an american city. There is a lot of love and magic here and things just "seem to happen" more than in any place I have ever seen.  It also reminds me of a 3rd world country in some respects with its roads, poverty and challenged infrastructure.  But like all things in life, to have all the good, there has to be some bad to balance it out.  The bad is not on the surface and living here does expose things you don't see just as a tourist.  But I did expect that.

Unlike a lot of musicians (mainly young) who come here to New Orleans for their break or want to be part of the scene, I had done quite a bit of work over almost 20 years as a professional musician already.  We had built a big fan base on the west coast as well as in europe and done 10 records.  I had done 250+ gigs a year for a 10 year stretch and worked really hard at the business of playing and keeping gigs. I saw a scene rise and fall a few times and watched LA area clubs close up and not be replaced.  In europe we had to translate our music for the bigger stages and keep audiences coming back, 

However, we never really toured through the USA that much because we were always pretty busy on the West coast. Really we are unknowns, which actually has been a positive.  So our situation is quite different and it took some getting used to being lumped in with the newcomers.  But I think its here for everyone and the fans and the people have been great.  Especially the locals and native New Orleanians. My biggest concern was will the people here dig our style? So far so good.

 

The Move to New Orleans - Part II - Roosters and Subwoofers 

This is one loud and wild place!  People drive kinda wild, the neighborhood kids are wild, the streets are missing a lot of signs, the weather is wild and people blast hiphop at unbelievable low frequency decibels. Furthermore, there are all kinds of subtropic insects and spiders and there are the roosters.

I never thought about roosters much until I moved into the 9th ward,  They live under the house, roost in our tree in the backyard, and devour any food left for Checkers the feral cat we inherited with the house.  The sound they make early morning, (separated only by 1/2 inch of planked floor boards) can only be described as demonic.  Really some of the most harrowing sounds from the depths of hell.   Of course this took some getting used to as we had no idea this was just how it is here,  The rooster families come and go and we have watched many grow up and move on...to where I have no idea.  Also some early morning raids on roosting families by loose pitbulls has thinned the herd a bit as well as some entrepreneurs with traps capturing some of them.  They were not always here and people told us it is post-katrina phenomena, maybe even loose fighting cocks that adapted to our street. 

Anyway they are a big part of our neighborhood and we made them part of the artwork for the new record. 

The Move to New Orleans - Part I - Double Nickels on the Dime 

I'd been coming to New Orleans since 1989 when the French Quarter Festival was just one or two stages! Like a lot of natural relationships, I didn't like New Orleans right away.  But over time I did become seduced by the city. This was mainly due to the beautiful people, street culture, European feel and overall vibe of the city. I started to picture New Orleans as an exotic experienced woman, waiting to be discovered, Before Katrina, I got married here on the Mississippi River and had Treme Brass Band (with Uncle Lionel and Kenny Terry) as our wedding band.

But by 2013, our LA band needed a new home base.  And in New Orleans I could really check out the horn players and live in a place steeped in musical traditions like the Mardis Gras Indians and Second Lines. Furthermore, my sister lived here, working as a DJ for WWOZ, and really backed our move,

So, under the cover of darkness we sold our van and packed up the house (with cats and amplifiers) and drove route 10 West to New Orleans, arriving in six days. The last few days in Long Beach were a whirlwind with many friends stopping over pitching for "one last party."  Even the night before we left, White Boy James broke into our house and woke us at 2 am to say goodbye.  Love that kind of dedication!

The 1900 mile (3050 km) drive was wild with a fully packed 24 foot truck towing our car and with two cats in the cab. "Double nickels on the dime" (thanks, Smoke and the Minutemen) was our theme, because if we went over 55 mph the truck started shaking uncontrollably. Texas was frightening with its high winds, the constant high speed  semis passing us and dogs sniffing all around our vehicle.

Frazzled, we made it anyway and were greeted at our new 9th Ward location with both welcomes and cold stares.  But we soon figured out, that's just how this neighborhood rolls.  Our New Orleans adventure had begun!
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WHAT'S A BLUES WARRIOR?

Back in 2010, I drove to the Sunset Strip and pitched a reality show called  "Blues Warriors" to a successful reality show producer. It would follow the band around on all its adventures as it tried to make a living making music.  I guess the crazy adventures on the road and ridiculous situations were not enough of a draw and it was shot down in a matter of seconds!  Anyway, the name lives on and we now use it to refer to our musical family and fans. I guess its for people who like rough and honest music from the heart and want to be part of JMMBs trip through the melodic universe.
May26

Summer Euro Tour Johnny Mastro & MBs

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