Happy Mardi Gras: Six Songs for Fat Tuesday

Ah, Mardi Gras. A time honored tradition marked by booze, beads, boobies, and other pre-Lent debauchery.

Since 1837, the city of New Orleans has been paving the way for last-minute sinners by throwing, "the greatest free show on earth." While we at Up on the Sun have mad respect for the aforementioned three B's of Fat Tuesday, not to mention the awesome street parades, floats and feasting. It wouldn't be a party if it wasn't for all that jazz.

For those of us that cannot be in the Big Easy to celebrate this most auspicious of occasions, we've compiled a list of tracks to help capture the party spirit, including a tune from Phoenix's very own Bad Cactus Brass Band, a New Orleans-style combo that excels at the Mardi Gras sound. The band is playing at Fat Tuesday on Mill Avenue tonight, but if you don't feel like wandering down that street, our sister blog Jackalope Ranch has nine other ideas for your party down needs.

Bad Cactus Brass Band is scheduled to perform tonight at Fat Tuesday in Tempe.

Galactic - "Hey Na Na"

New Orleans-based jazz-funk troupe, Galactic, got their start way back in 1994 by playing at the annual celebration but had yet to commemorate the event with a carnival album until today's release of Carnivale Electricos. "It's a carnival record that evokes the electric atmosphere of a whole city," says the band's website. We agree.

Bad Cactus Brass Band - "King Hippy"

New Orleans sound from our own back yard.

Cowboy Mouth - "Hurricane Song"

The world would be a little sunnier if everyone could capture Fred LeBlanc's energy in a bottle.

Professor Longhair - "Go To The Mardi Gras"

A classic to get your feet moving.

Trombone Shorty - "Do To Me"

Something about shaking it from this New Orleans' horn-man. Works for us!

Celia Cruz - "La Vida Es Un Carnaval"

Here's a Latin nod.

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Anthony Sandoval
Contact: Anthony Sandoval