SOTD – St. Roch Blues by Hurray for the Riff Raff

Per request of a listener to my radio show yesterday, today’s song of the day is St. Roch Blues by Hurray for the Riff Raff. I played this song during a tribute to New Orleans bands since Mardi Gras was this past week and I got several positive responses from listeners of the show. As the listeners conveyed to me, the lyrics of this song are powerful, the singer sounds a lot like Norah Jones, and the song seems to embrace the spirit of New Orleans’s soul-inspired music.

Even with these positive responses I still felt something was missing without the inclusion of the music video. This video does a fantastic job of explaining the spirit that goes hand in hand with The Big Easy and its music scene. From the band members’ strained faces to the procession of eccentric New Orleans natives, I can attest first hand from my trip to The Big Easy that no group of people are as inspiring prideful about where they live despite the obvious hardships that surround them.

As some food for thought, St. Roch is a neighborhood within New Orleans that was named after a Christian shrine and cemetery in the neighborhood. Traditionally, people would go to the St. Roch chapel and cemetery if they had a disease or deformity, and they would often leave behind things like glass eyeballs or crutches as a sign of gratitude to St. Roch. From the video, it would seem that St. Roch Blues has to do with too many people dying in a beautiful historic neighborhood and being brought to this cemetery on too regular a basis.

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