Funeral for a Friend

( 2 )

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Thom Jurek
On their tenth album, the Crescent City's Dirty Dozen Brass Band bring it all back to the cobblestone streets where it began. The Dozens have done it all, from straight New Orleans jazz to restless funky experimentation, and here they put it all down to the roots of its origin. Funeral for a Friend is just that, a complete reenactment of a New Orleans funeral or "homecoming." The Dozens played them at the beginning and continue to. The set is dedicated to the memory of founding member Anthony "Tuba Fats" Lacen, who passed away just a few weeks after its completion. The band performed it in the streets leading the horse-drawn carriage procession. Comprised entirely of gospel ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Thom Jurek
On their tenth album, the Crescent City's Dirty Dozen Brass Band bring it all back to the cobblestone streets where it began. The Dozens have done it all, from straight New Orleans jazz to restless funky experimentation, and here they put it all down to the roots of its origin. Funeral for a Friend is just that, a complete reenactment of a New Orleans funeral or "homecoming." The Dozens played them at the beginning and continue to. The set is dedicated to the memory of founding member Anthony "Tuba Fats" Lacen, who passed away just a few weeks after its completion. The band performed it in the streets leading the horse-drawn carriage procession. Comprised entirely of gospel and spiritual songs, it follows the trajectory of a departed one's life from birth to celebrations of her or his character to death and resurrection in the afterlife. The first of the three stages begins with a slow, mournful dirge that emerges as "Just a Closer Walk With Thee," as the gathering begins at the courthouse and becomes a strident statement in "I Shall Not Be Moved," where the grief begins to give way to the feeling of victory, that the departed has broken the bondage of this life's prison. The music begins to swell and swirl and gains in stridency and emotion until it actually erupts about five tracks in with "Jesus on the Mainline," with the band accompanied by the Davell Crawford Singers. The mind-blowing thing is the sound; though this was recorded in a studio, the listener feels like she's in the middle of a throng of marchers, surrounded by the band and the choir. The second stage begins with a stunning rendering of "John the Revelator" that simulates being played at the gravesite and offers this bluesy prophetic read on the entrance of the departed into a new order prophesied. It is resolved in "I'll Fly Away," with Melody Palmer leading the choir in a rowdy statement of death's defeat. This is followed by an altar call in "Is There Anybody Here That Loves My Jesus?" The final stage -- leaving the cemetery for home -- is commenced by the funky read of "Down by the Riverside," and is resolved in the celebratory gratitude for mercy in "Amazing Grace." But this review does nothing, literally, to describe the sheer power of the transference of emotion that Funeral for a Friend does. This is easily the most heartfelt, honestly rendered, and stunningly captured moment of the DDBB's recording career; it belongs in every household where the celebration of life and its transition from the sorrow of death to the eternal afterlife is honored. It is not only a classic in the genre, but will come to be regarded as a jazz classic, period.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 5/11/2004
  • Label: Indieblue Music
  • UPC: 699675152628
  • Catalog Number: 51526

Album Credits

Performance Credits
The Dirty Dozen Brass Band Primary Artist
Gregory Davis Trumpet
David Hidalgo Accordion
Kirk Joseph Sousaphone
Roger Lewis Baritone Saxophone
Efrem Towns Trumpet, Flugelhorn
Kevin Harris Tenor Saxophone
Julius McKee Sousaphone
Gregory Michael Davis II Trumpet
Terence Higgins Drums
Sammie Williams Trombone
Davell Singers Crawford Vocals
Jeffrey Hills Sr. Sousaphone
Jamie McClean Guitar
Technical Credits
Blind Willie Johnson Composer
A.E. Brumley Composer
Greg Calbi Mastering
John Newton Composer
Craig Street Producer, Audio Production
William Stickles Composer
Marc Allan Executive Producer
Traditional Composer
Homer Morris Composer
Wesley Fontenot Engineer
Jason Mott Engineer
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 2 )
Rating Distribution

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Posted October 1, 2010

    I bought this a for a Mardi Gras Celebration @ my job

    It is very different and very soulful and I just love it!!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    I'm Buying This Disk for (almost) Everyone on my List for Christmas

    Yep. It's that good. The arrangements are unbelievable - seemingly loose but incredibly tight, a great big sorrowful, joyful, celebratory mourning. I bought this disk to have some real New Orleans Jazz in my collection, after Hurricane Katrina. NOW I think I do know what it means to miss New Orleans. I've listened to, and even worked in, music all my life - but I've never heard anything like this before. Don't miss it.

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews