Meet that famed siren from Huey “Piano” Smith’s Clowns, New Orleans’ own Gerri Hall, lip-synching her song “Who Can I Run To” on “The!!!! Beat” show circa 1966, long after her Clown days. The song was written by another Ponderosa Stomp favorite, Bobby Parker of “Barefootin’” fame, produced by Wardell Querzergue, and originally released on Hot-Line 907. Hall serves as the piercing foil to Bobby Marchan on “Don’t You Just Know It” and as the lead singer on “Popeye,” and of course her vocals are prominently featured on numerous other Clowns 45s, such as “Don’t You Know Yokomo.”
Hall also recorded a handful of collector-prized 45s, including a version of “I Cried a Tear,” which Jerry Wexler leased for Atlantic Records. A native of the Lower Ninth Ward, she was actually nicknamed “Gerri” because of her crazy antics similar to the most popular clown of the time, Jerry Lewis. She is the sister-in-law of Rosemary (Hall) Domino and Reggie Hall. As a longtime habitue and waitress at the Dew Drop Inn, she experienced incredible New Orleans music history firsthand and knew virtually all of the local musicians of New Orleans’ golden age of R&B.
To see and hear Gerri Hall at this year’s Ponderosa Stomp, buy your tickets here. For Stomp travel and hotel packages, click here.
Louisiana swamp-pop supergroup Lil’ Band o’ Gold, led by Ponderosa Stomp stalwarts Warren Storm and C.C. Adcock, has once again attracted the attention of an international superstar, this time English singer and fashion designer Lily Allen, who hired the band to play her wedding reception June 11. A fitting choice, given swamp pop’s fetishized focus … Continue reading Smitten by swamp pop, superstar Lily Allen hires Stomp stalwarts Warren Storm and Lil’ Band o’ Gold for her wedding
“Just when I thought I was out, they pull me back in,” says mafia don Michael Corleone in “The Godfather III.” The same could be said of an equally respected godfather of New Orleans R&B, Clarence “Frogman” Henry, lured once again into the spotlight from his retirement lilypad in Algiers to headline the latest Ponderosa … Continue reading Clarence “Frogman” Henry leaps out of retirement (again) to headline a very special Ponderosa Stomp Revue on June 8
“A wop bop a loo mop, a good goddam!” Fifty-four years ago today, per Bumps Blackwell’s recommendation, Little Richard Penniman (seen above with Jet Harris, Gene Vincent and Sam Cooke) joined forces with Fats Domino’s band — which included the late Earl Palmer, drummer extraordinaire who performed at the 1st annual Ponderosa Stomp and served … Continue reading PS Time Machine: September 14, 1955