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Friday, January 26, 2018

New Orleans (1947)































Starring:
Storyline
Music's greatest legends re-enact the birth of jazz in this song-filled tribute to the town where it all began: New Orleans! Arturo de Cordova stars as Nick, the proprietor of a Bourbon Street gambling joint, and artistic haven for African-American musicians. When he falls for an opera-singing socialite, Nick realizes that only through music will he gain respectability, and launches a campaign to bring jazz to the highbrow American stage. 

A refreshing rediscovery, New Orleans is especially noteworthy for its lack of racial stereotypes, as well as the high caliber of performances delivered by its stellar cast, including Louis Armstrong, Woody Herman, Kid Ory, Meade Lux Lewis and more. Perhaps the film's most memorable number is "Farewell to Storyville", a haunting blues melody sung by Billie Holiday as she leads a procession of black musicians exiled from the city -- a sequence that beautifully captures the melancholy and grace of Holiday's inimitable performance style. Other musical highlights include Holiday's rendition of "New Orleans", Armstrong's "Endie" and "Where The Blues Were Born", and their duet "The Blues Are Brewin". Also included in this DVD are two musical shorts from Paramount Studios (A Rhapsody In Black And Blue featuring Armstrong and Symphony In Black with Holiday and Duke Ellington) as well as an essay on the making of New Orleans, which originated as a project for Orson Welles.

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