Arcade Fire on the bayou: The band’s new Mardi Gras parade seems OK … or not?

Arcade Fire on the bayou: The band’s new Mardi Gras parade seems OK … or not?

Y’all hear the information concerning the new Arcade Hearth Mardi Gras krewe?

Listed here are the fundamentals: Win Butler and Regine Chassagne of Arcade Hearth teamed up with Preservation Corridor to create a brand new Carnival krewe, full with a parade on the Tuesday earlier than Mardi Gras that winds via the French Quarter and Treme, lands at a free competition after which wraps up with a post-parade ball at One Eyed Jack’s. The worth of admission advantages the Preservation Corridor Basis and KANPE, which Chassagne helped launch to help Haitians with “well being, diet, housing, training, agriculture and management.”

Appears OK, proper?

However keep in mind how bizarre it was when the identical group threw collectively the David Bowie second-line (which, I admit, I attended, and on the time once we have been dancing on the street and packed in like smoked oysters it did not really feel like we have been doing something unsuitable) after which it someway grew to become a part of this wave of celeb second-lines that appeared to underline and italicize all of the bizarre second-lines New Orleans now boasts each weekend? Nonetheless, it means numerous New Orleans musicians are getting extra common work, and actually, who can disagree with that whenever you’re giving jobs to artists, in order that appears fairly OK.

And but, they’re from out of city — Arcade Hearth’s roots are in Montreal — in order that’s one thing to contemplate. When somebody new is available in and will get a grip on native traditions, it is bizarre and appears like appropriation and gentrification and all these different uncomfortable phrases, however Butler and Chassagne have ostensibly been Uptown residents for a while now, and the way lengthy should one dwell regionally to be an area? And fairly a little bit of what we contemplate actual New Orleans’ Carnival began with out-of-towners, and actually we should not be so xenophobic anyway — we’re hip, we’re cool — and we are able to cope with slightly shake-up, and, in any case, they’re planning this factor with the parents of Preservation Corridor, which is about as shut as you may get to grabbing the rubber approval stamp of native cache and in order that appears fairly OK.

And but, they’re marching over to Congo Sq., which is about as pure of a New Orleans musical Floor Zero as you’ll be able to presumably discover, and should not that area be reserved for one thing that feels extra distinctly native and born of our personal roots? However it’s culminating in a free competition, and what’s extra New Orleans than a free competition, in order that appears fairly OK.

And but it’s a little bizarre that a few celebrities try to start out a Carnival krewe, however check out Orpheus, a krewe led yearly by considered one of its most well-known founders, Harry Connick Jr., who, like a number of of the most important parades, stacks the float decks along with his celeb pals, in order that appears fairly OK.

And but there’s the entire price of the factor — krewe memberships begin at $1,000 — which all however ensures membership of sure demographic and socioeconomic standing, but when we’re all being trustworthy with ourselves, we could not get into a number of the greatest krewes on the town for that value, after which numerous the money goes into the krewe itself, not, like this one, to foundations geared toward bettering the lives of others, and in order that, too, appears fairly OK.

And but.

I admit, it is laborious to pinpoint the place I get despatched off monitor about this complete factor. It is true we New Orleanians are directly fiercely protecting of our cultcha and wildly laissez faire, come-one-come-all as a result of the place else might you discover a group the place it is OK to decorate like a pirate and stroll down the road in the midst of the day with out incomes a second look? However there’s received to be room for an eyebrow increase and an ambivalent shuffle-step to the aspect when one thing new rolls up the parade route.

And particularly now, as New Orleans wrestles with no matter it means to have a group comprised of each newcomers lately drawn to the town and the parents with roots nine-generations deep, we now have to be allowed the room to be uncertain, to be curious, to assume twice about giving one thing an opportunity. Even when there’s in any other case no cause for it.

That appears fairly OK, too, proper?

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Chelsea Brasted is a metro columnist protecting the New Orleans space. Ship story concepts, ideas, complaints and fan mail to You may as well textual content or name 225.460.1350, and comply with her on Twitter and Fb.