Black History Month: The Many Contributions from the Community of Treme

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NEW ORLEANS, LOUISIANA– Long before the culture of televised on HBO, the New Orleans community of Treme had been popular for over 200 years.

Today, cradles an impressive multitude of culture, from my favorite place in the city to buy a bowl of gumbo, Lil Dizzy’s, to the home of the tattoo shop, Aart Accent Tattoo, and Piercings, owned by a woman known to be one of the first black tattoo artists in the country.  Congo Square, located in Armstrong Park, once was the meeting place of hundreds of the enslaved selling their wares and filling the open air with drums on Sundays.  Indeed, just as Dorothy once said, there is no place like home!

Treme is also rumored to be the birthplace of not word “jazz.”  My Southern University A&M College professor of music history once said to me Jazz’s etymology stems from the word jasmine, saying jasmine perfume was commonly worn by “women of the night”… or prostitutes.  Often times, these women would perform to the free-thinking expression of burgeoning jazz music.

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