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Big Daddy’s last dance

2 minutes

The reverence and revelry of a New Orleans jazz funeral procession

Drawing from West African, Haitian and European colonial influences, jazz funerals are a tradition almost entirely exclusive to New Orleans, and as culturally rich and multifaceted as the city itself. The processions generally open with a brass band performing solemn marches and dirges as family and friends accompany the deceased to a burial. Eventually, the band breaks out into more upbeat and swinging numbers, allowing mourners cathartic release in music and dance, and onlookers to form a ‘second line’ and join the festivities. In what director Caitlyn Greene describes as ‘a love letter to New Orleans’, Big Daddy’s Last Dance captures the arc of a jazz funeral, in all its reverent, jubilant glory.

Support Aeon

Ideas can change the world

Aeon is a registered charity committed to the spread of knowledge and a cosmopolitan worldview.

But we can’t do it without you.

Aeon is a registered charity committed to the spread of knowledge and a cosmopolitan worldview. Our mission is to create a sanctuary online for serious thinking.

No ads, no paywall, no clickbait – just thought-provoking ideas from the world’s leading thinkers, free to all. But we can’t do it without you.

Become a Friend for $5 a month or Make a one-off donation

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