Last year, during the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival, Tim Duffy slept for several nights on the sofa of New Orleans bluesman Little Freddie King. Duffy runs Music Maker Relief Foundation, an organization that supports and promotes older Southerners who play traditional music and make less than $18,000 a year. King, who lives at Musicians’ Village, a community built after Hurricane Katrina by Habitat for Humanity, is one of the artists Music Maker supports.
“In the mornings we rode bikes around his neighborhood,” Duffy writes. “At lunch we dined on soul food cooked by his fiancée, Babyface, and afterwards we sat around and played guitar. One morning, as we picked up the guitars where they laid from the night before, I set up my recording gear and captured one of Little Freddie’s informal music sessions.”
The result is a CD called At Home in the New Orleans Musicians’ Village, which you can order by clicking here. Those who favor slickly produced music will be disappointed; this is an intimate glimpse of two friends playing and chatting together in a living room. You hear them fussing over speaker levels; discussing the tour buses that roll through Musicians’ Village; and deciding whether to pause for Coca-Colas. The music is unplugged, gritty, and irresistible.