9th Ward Daily Photo via rl reeves jr

Who was the best soul singer to ever ply his trade in New Orleans? Johnny Adams. There’s always vigorous room for debate on this matter, and I routinely engage in the discussion on Friday afternoons with a group of elderly Treme regulars at my favorite tavern.

We listen to ‘Release Me’ a few times a month and it does squelch the conversation for a bit as everyone is rapt during Adams’ performance. If we’re really lucky an elderly Black crooner will put down his Bud Light and join in for the refrain.

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