SSoP Podcast Episode 46 — New Orleans: Pass a Good Time

SSoP Podcast Episode 46 — New Orleans: Pass a Good Time

Monday, 20 February, 2023

When you’re ready to let the good times roll, there’s no place like New Orleans to cut loose, indulge in local grub, sip something intoxicating, and soak up the atmosphere — while tapping your toes to some of the best music on the planet.

New Orleans was born as a port city in 1718. What set New Orleans apart then (and now) is how it created a unique culture from the diverse people who populated the city. New Orleans got its defining characteristics — a sense of hospitality, its food, its music — from enslaved and formerly enslaved people, Native Americans, and immigrants from France, Spain, the Caribbean, and Italy.

There’s a lot to see and do, but if we’re being honest, the real draws are food and music — and the annual street party that brings them together: Mardi Gras.

In this episode, we dig into a little bit of history and a whole lotta music and food, including the magic of jambalaya and the difference between cajun and creole. We also tell you how to find the best parades during Mardi Gras and get real about a haunted house.

Then we recommend great books that took us there on the page, including a fantasy novel with voodoo zombies and enchanted graffiti, an over-the-top cookbook that captures the spirit of the city, an exploration of Katrina’s impact on nine different lives, a historical murder mystery with tons of atmosphere, and a gorgeous novel that weaves a family saga with sci-fi.


Read the full transcript of New Orleans: Pass a Good Time.

The Axeman's Jazz

buy | read review

The Ballad of Perilous Graves

buy | read review

Turkey and the Wolf

buy | read review

Nine Lives

buy | read review

The Lost Book of Adana Moreau

buy | read review

other books we mentioned


other cool stuff we talked about

Perhaps you’d like to listen to some New Orleans music while you dig into these links.


new orleans 101

black man playing the trumpet at night on a street corner in new orleans
Photo courtesy of Morgan Petroski/Unsplash.

two truths and a lie

brightly colored image of multiple plates of food sitting on a table
The perfectly over-the-top food of Turkey and the Wolf.
  • Dan Baum is the author of Nine Lives: Death and Life in New Orleans:
  • The book was adapted into the musical Nine Lives, A Musical Story of New Orleans by Paul Sanchez and Colman.
  • Michael Zapata is the author of The Lost Book of Adana Moreau. Here’s his website and Twitter.

a whole lot of music

  • Buckwheat Zydeco is on a short list of ‘guys who play a mean accordion.’
  • Educational and awesome.

Congratulations! You made it to the end. Here’s your reward:

  • Dave is still kicking himself for not talking about Louis Prima in our New Orleans episode.



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Top image courtesy of Robson Hatsukami Morgan/Unsplash.

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keep reading

This poem by Sheryl St. Germain will transport you to a quiet New Orleans, a languorous city where you can rest your bones on a porch swing, listen to the night sounds, and relish details that make it feel like home.
Forget everything you know about piling meat between slices of bread. New Orleans has a thing or two to teach you about making a sandwich — and some of the tastiest sandwiches are coming out of Turkey and the Wolf.
Take a virtual trip to New Orleans with a voodoo zombie fantasy, an over-the-top cookbook, an exploration of Katrina's impact on nine lives, a historical murder mystery, and a gorgeous family saga woven with sci-fi.

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