Voodoo Music + Arts Experience can teach us all a lesson on how to accept others and spread love.
I left New Orleans with a different mindset after spending the weekend at Voodoo Festival. I quickly became desensitized to seeing half-naked people dancing around and, with the the occasion- al wardrobe mishap, full-on naked people dancing around. People wore outlandish costumes and danced like there was no tomorrow by the end of the festival on Sunday, but it didn’t start out that way.
On the first day of the festival, people were excited but seemed more reserved, and by Sunday it felt like we were all one big family, which is a different experience from most music festivals. Voodoo was made for people to feel at home and safe with their art and music-loving peers.
When you reach the entrance of the festival, the smell of slowly cooked New Orleans delicacies lure you in. Though the food isn’t necessarily cheap, a lot of people believe it is well worth the money.
Voodoo brings in food trucks from some of New Orleans’ most famous restaurants, such as Blue Oak BBQ, Reginelli’s Pizzeria, Boucherie and The Big Cheezy. The food prices range from about $5 to $20, but a lot of the food options are items you can only get at the festival.
If the food isn’t enough to draw you in, the bands surely will. Voodoo features well known names and musicians that people aren’t listening to but will most likely love. A few of these musicians include The Suffers, a band from Houston, and an up-and-coming DJ known as Kayzo.
The Suffers’ lead singer Kam Franklin sat down with me to discuss her Voodoo experience on Sunday. Franklin and The Suffers pour their blood, sweat and tears into their music to blend a variety of cultures and styles for each song. Franklin said he was thrilled with the gratifying feel- ing of performing their music in front of such an exuberant and fun crowd.
The Suffers fun R&B style mixes well with Voodoo’s funky atmosphere. The band dressed up as Mario characters for their performance, with Franklin being Princess Peach.
“It was definitely hot up on stage but Voodoo is worth every minute of it,” Franklin said. “Voodoo is one of my favorite festivals because they were one of the first to reach out to us in 2015, so we were happy to come back this year.”
Hayden Capuozzo, better known as Kayzo, sat down with me on Friday to talk about his festival experience. He DJs all over the world and is getting ready to release his newest single “Wasted Space” on Halloween.
“I get a lot of inspirations from bands that I grew up listening to when i was 13 or 14 years old,” Kayzo said. “I now get to play about 95 percent of my own music but I still incorporate some of the styles that I loved when I was growing up.”
Kayzo performed most of his own music on Friday night and looked like he enjoyed the experience. He said he knew he would love performing at Voodoo because the festival gives him a venue he can’t find in many other places.
“It’s like a different world over here,” Kayzo said, “and the culture of New Orleans is so amazing.”
Voodoo has a special way of bringing artists and fans together that makes fans feel like they are closer to the artists and vice versa.