‘Groove Interrupted’ shows why Katrina couldn’t silence New Orleans music
By Suzanne Stouse NOLA.com
“How’d y’all make out?” It was a classic New Orleans inquiry that became a standard greeting in the months after Hurricane Katrina, and it is the asked — and answered — question at the heart of Keith Spera’s finely drawn portraits of musicians’ lives and livelihoods bisected by the storm.
Burying the impossible notion that Aug. 29, 2005, might have been the day the music died, the veteran Times-Picayune music writer presents 13 profiles, many expansions on earlier pieces for the newspaper, all conveying a sense of “what New Orleans music was and is in spite of Katrina’s disruption.”
In an introduction as informed and insightful as the profiles, Spera calls the music a true echo of its distinctive birthplace. He writes about his post-storm days roaming the empty streets as a critic-turned-news reporter, where amongst the devastation he encountered the blessed sight of a still-standing Tipitina’s.