There are certain smells that conjure memories for me. Sometimes I’ll cook something up in my kitchen using one of my grandmothers’ recipes and it transports me right back to their homes. Music does the same for me. Certain bands and songs can bring me back to specific moments in time. Sometimes even just talking about a city will take me back to the show (or shows) I’ve seen there. The mention of having the bachelor party of one of my good friends in New Orleans brought me back to all the great music I’ve seen there in my two previous trips.

I saw Big Sam’s Funky Nation at the Funky Butt with my grandmother, when she took me there for my high school graduation. It’s still one of her favorite stories to tell her friends. After an incredible Jazz Fest in 2008, I closed out my NOLA trip with Tim Reynolds & TR3 at Tipitina’s. Just listening to the songs on this playlist, I could write 1000 words. If you’re feeling stuck at work, maybe you just need the right song to get you kickstarted.

  • “Cissy Strut” – The Meters
  • “Hey Pocky Way” – The String Cheese Incident
  • “Bridge to Bama” – Soulive feat. Talib Kweli
  • “Right Place Wrong Time” – Dr. John
  • “Hard to Handle” – Big Sam’s Funky Nation
  • “Ain’t Nothin’ But A Party” – The Dirty Dozen Brass Band
  • “Typical” – MUTEMATH
  • “Hocus Pocus” – Tim Reynolds & TR3
  • “Time Is On My Side” – Irma Thomas and Alan Toussaint
  • “Feel Like Funkin’ It Up” – Rebirth Brass Band