Music Day on the Set of Treme

Yesterday my call time was 2pm. I arrived at the location in New Orleans and proceeded to sit, wait and eat, with the 50 plus other extras. The wardrobe came around and checked everyone. I was good.

We started filming around 5:30pm. We were all just going to be standing on a dance floor in front of a stage holding beers and mixed drinks and watching the band. We had to act excited, dance, and sway like we were enjoying the music.

(all the drinks were fake made from Odoles or apple juice. I actually watched them pour out actual beer and put in nonalcoholic. Someone told me that they can't legally give people on set real alcoholic beverages. Esther told me that the night she was on Contraband, their's was warm Gingerale)

When the band came out, it was not hard to act like we were enjoying the music. In fact, I had to hold back tears; the music was so good. Seriously, I loved it!

The song they played was a true New Orleans Jazz tune, something about a who-do queen. No, he wasn't saying Voo-do. He was singing 'Who-do," I swear unless he just has a bad speech impediment. But the music was just stinkin' unbelievably good.

Henry Butler was the main singer. I found out after the fact that he's kinda a legend in New Orleans. And he should be. That man is freaky talented. His lead guitar player is this charismatic guitar genius, Vasti Jackson. He's kinda a big deal, too, as he should be. I didn't get the names of the horns players, Drummer, or bass players, but they were all just perfect. Really.

We had to listen to them do the song about 10 times, it seemed. Stop and start several times. And every time, the song was just so good.

In between takes, Henry would just play around on his keys, he'd start singing silly songs, the horns would chime in. It was so fun. and again, the music was amazing.

Funny Story, The Tuba player was an actor. He wasn't really playing the Tuba; only the two other guys were playing their horns. They had a kid off stage who was really playing the Tuba for the song.

The Tuba player was Wendell Pierce. He was hilarious, and you could tell he loved the spotlight.

I kept thinking, "I'm getting paid to hear these legends; these masters play a song for a TV show!" It was filmed like a music video. From what I heard, they will use the entire song in an episode. I doubt you will be able to see me at all in the scene. I may be able to spot myself because I know where I was standing, but even that's a long shot.

After we were finished shooting, I went up and talked to the band to tell them how wonderful they were. Vasti gave me his card, and it was just so nice. The other band members were talking to other people, so I didn't get to tell them.

I really can't believe that I live this close to that much musical genius. I mean, New Orleans is full of super talent. I'm so glad that HBO thought to show this unique culture and music here in New Orleans. I'm glad I got to be a part of it.

By 8pm, we were done. Best and easiest $101.50 I've ever earned :-)

When I left, the casting guy said, "See you next time" I hope I get called again. A few of the other extra's had worked on Treme before; they said they use the extras more than once.

Take a minute to check out a couple of the musicians I was blessed to listen to last night...

Henry is also a photographer. Yes, he's blind. This documentary tells the story of a few blind photographers like Henry.

Vasti plays with Henry now but also has a solo career.


Kimberly said…
Carole it sounds like you are having a blast!!


Popular posts from this blog

Where's Your Smile?

Social Media Killed All the Stars