A Good Read A Good Listen and a Good Drink: Charm Taylor, The Honorable South

It’s a simple yet sublime pleasure, and just thinking about it can make you feel a little calmer, a little more content. Imagine: You bring out one of the good rocks glasses (or your favorite mug or a special occasion tea cup) and pour a couple fingers of amber liquid (or something dark and strong or just some whole milk). You drop the needle on the jazz platter (or pull up a blues album on your mp3 player or dig out that mixtape from college). Ensconcing yourself in the coziest seat in the house, you crack the spine on a classic (or find your place in that sci-fi paperback or pull up a biography on your e-book reader). And then, you go away for a while. Ah, bliss.

In this series, some of NTSIB’s friends share beloved albums, books and drinks to recommend or inspire.

The Honorable South of New Orleans, Louisiana, and their heady stew of rock, funk and jazz are a long-time favorite of mine. As I noted the first time I wrote about them, the best description I can give you is that they’ve found a way to bottle the spirit of New Orleans.

Faithful, Brave, and Honest, their second record, is due next year. But they have just put out a video for the first single, St. Charles Parish. It’s one of their slower numbers, and it is lovely.

"Saint Charles Parish" by The Honorable South Official Music Video

And now, here is lead singer Ms. Charm Taylor, to tell us about her favorite book, record and drink:

A Good Read:

A library the size of an industrial sized refrigerator, must mean I own books that I have yet to read, haven’t finished reading, don’t belong to me, and can’t remember I own right? I think the last piece of fiction I read in it’s entirety was Oil! by Upton Sinclair, before that it was Black Music by Amiri Baraka, which made me realize I didn’t know half as much about jazz as thought I did.

I read one or the other in conjunction with a social history of The Spiritual Churches of New Orleans: Origins, Beliefs, and Rituals of an African-American Religion by Claude F. Jacobs a little bit ago.

I immediately followed those up with Herbal Medicine translated from the original German text. Ok, I’m cheating here and not really abiding by the parameters of the blog. NO Rules! Right now the good read in my life is Cunningham’s Encyclopedia of Herbal Medicine all about the mysteries of the universe and leaves of the world.

A Good Listen:

Mongo Santamaria: Afro Roots (1972 repackaging of Yambú(1958) and Mongo (1959))

Jazz cats fusing Latin Rhumba, Soul and music from the continent. Outstanding record with everything you need: intense drummer…smooth melodies.

Mongo Santamaria - Afro Blue


A Good Drink:

African Colada featuring Rhum Barbancourt, Haiti.

It’s sort of like a private cruise in your mouth, which means you’re playing yourself if you decide to substitute for Bean.

2 spoons muddle pineapple
1 1/2 shot Rhum Barbancourt
1/2 shot simple syrup
large pinch cinnamon
splash heavy cream

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