For a night, Julio Padron and Cuban Feeling tapped into the Spanish tinge that has lived in New Orleans for over 100 years, with a flavor that is always savored on Frenchmen street.The line-up consisted of two regular members from the Cuban band, Interactivo, in Julio Padron, the trumpet player and band leader, and Jose Carlos Marin, the trombone player.The band also consisted of Cuban players Osmany Paredes on the keys and Rudyck Vidal on bass, with Alexey Marti, a Cuban player who has been living in New Orleans for five years, on percussions.The band had the fantastic New Orleans drummer Ricky Sebastian sit in with them.The lineup, which had never before played together, sounded fantastic, as if the blood running through their veins was the same.
Cuban Feeling jammed to many Cuban songs, with each player getting a chance to shine, from Padron showing off his chops as a trumpet player to Marin and him showing the great chemistry they've developed after playing for decades together. Marti showed off his drumming ability with a solo, where the rest of the band just surrounded him and watched him do his thing, as the crowd moved to his beat.
There was a nice variety to the crowd, with the Frenchmen street tourist, curious local, and CubaNola (which hosted the event) following all mixed in, and all enjoying it in their own ways. From the Cuban guy in the white guayabera dancing up and down the hall as Padron and Marin sang "Bailar", to the freelance writer for Offbeat who I met before the show dancing in front of her seat, everyone seemed to be sucked into the energy. I'm pretty sure I scratched the floor of Snug Harbor as I danced in my chair.
The show was fantastic, as I left Frenchmen street completely satisfied and wanting to hear nothing else, hoping that I can get more of the same soon.