On Friday, May 6th, Jazz Fest revelers packed into Frenchmen Street’s The Maison for a guest-filled performance by Marc Brownstein-led jam-funk outfit Star Kitchen and the debut appearance by another all-star combo outfit, Honeypot, featuring keyboardist Aron Magner (The Disco Biscuits), guitarist Tim Palmieri (Lotus), bassist George Gekas (The Revivalists), and drummer Alvin Ford Jr. (Pretty Lights Live Band).

“Honeypot is going to be a blast for the audience,” said Gekas, who formed Honeypot specifically for this occasion, ahead of the performance. “The approach is to keep the music relatively open and expansive. Deep-pocketed grooves featuring group improvisation instead of solos, peppering in familiar tunes and some surprises to act as jam vehicles.”

“Musically, the idea should be to keep everyone moving,” he added. “Have a good time on stage with each other allowing the crowd to feed off that energy. Not focusing on certain styles or genres specifically. Let everything happen organically, which to me is the spirit of late-night Jazz Fest shows.”

Related: The Disco Biscuits Celebrate “M1” Release At Joy Theater In New Orleans [Photos/Video]

The high-powered quartet made good on that mission, throttling through fan favorites by everyone from Beastie Boys to MGMT to Beck to Pink Floyd to Phish. For the group’s closing burst of house party nostalgia, Star Kitchen guitarist Danny Mayer joined in on the fun to trade lead lines with Palmieri on Gwen Stefani‘s 2001 smash, “Hella Good”. Read more about how Honeypot came together for this special performance here.


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Star Kitchen, which features Mayer, bassist Marc Brownstein (The Disco Biscuits), drummer Marlon Lewis (Lauryn Hill, John Legend), and keyboardist Rob Marscher, kept the collaborative spirit alive on Frenchmen, gathering The Horn Section and their fellow Turkuaz vet Shira Elias to add to the party. Elias, a veteran Star Kitchen guest, helped add some soul to the proceedings with renditions of classics like Sly and the Family Stone‘s “Sing a Simple Song”, Minnie Riperton‘s “Baby, This Love I Have”, The Stylistics‘ “People Make the World Go Round, Bill Withers‘ “Lovely Day”, and Parliament‘s “Do That Stuff”. Other special guests who jumped in throughout the performance included vocalist Sammi Garett as well as keyboardists Cyrus Madden (Deep Banana Blackout) and Aron Magner.

Even beyond checking the typical collaborative Jazz Fest boxes, this Star Kitchen performance held significant emotional weight for the band. As Brownstein noted to the crowd, following multiple postponements of this show—and all shows—over the last three years, this marked the final “rescheduled” show on the band’s schedule. With the past now squarely put to bed, Brownie surmised, the possibilities for the future are endless.

Here’s to Jazz Fest, to late-nights on Frenchmen Street, to linking back up with old friends, to building new traditions. Here’s to whatever might come next for all of these artists—after so long away, the future looks bright.

Check out photo galleries from Star Kitchen and Honeypot’s New Orleans late-night show during Jazz Fest below via Dave Vann.