Everyone knows that it’s the high school bands that I like best when they roll during a Mardi Gras parade. The floats are fine. The Rolling Elvi are fun. The motorcycle riders are fun.
But, the marching bands. That’s the thing for me. They combine three wonderful elements. Music. Energy, And, color.
If there was going to be a Mardi Gras parade season this year my plan was to focus on just high school marching bands. I was actually going to reach out to some of the schools so that I could have a little more leeway on the streets.
As always, my trade would be my pictures. Since mostly high school students and parents are their photographers I’m guessing mine would be a few notches above the usual work. Who knows? One of the parents could be a retired National Geographic photographer.
That said, it’s a good thing most of the public versions of Mardi Gras have been shut down. A scientific analysis was released today. It looks like one carrier infected 50,000 people during Mardi Gras 2020. Not directly, but one person infected another and so on.
We were blamed for the surge last March even though we didn’t even know there was a virus. While it seems extreme, I’m glad the mayor is taking such a hard line this year.
Yesterday, she had a group of Big Chiefs on the podium with her. Each one of them implored the Indian community not to come out so that they would be alive to roll next year.
Tourists stay home. There won’t be much for you to do anyway. You won’t be allowed on the famous Bourbon Street unless you live there. If you gather illegally you could be fined or you could serve jail time. You don’t want that. We don’t want that.
There is the Jefferson Parish issue. I’ll discuss that tomorrow.
Semi-monochrome. That’s what I’ll call this picture. As I said a few days ago, I let the picture guide me in post production. All I want to do is print them down a bit.
As I wrote on the left side, I like high school marching bands.
I work hard to photograph them. One year, two high schools were rehearsing ten feet from each other. A battle of the bands broke out. The drum majors were prancing in each other’s faces. They gave no ground. They held no quarter.
But, just like a good sporting match, when they were done they broke apart and shook hands.
I’ll look in my daybooks and find the year. If I can, I’ll publish some of the files from that night. I won’t tone them down. I’ll light up the page with them.
Stay safe. Stay strong. Stay mighty. Wear your mask. Wash your hands. Keep your distance. Look after each other. Listen to all the high school marching band music.