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On this edition of The NOLADrinks Show with Bryan Dias, we’re joined by the team from the Music and Culture Coalition of New Orleans. We discuss ideas connected to the tourism economy, advocating for the culture bearers of the city, and why it matters to both locals and visitors alike.

Pictured above from left – Bryan Dias of The NOLADrinks Show, Renard Bridgewater, Hannah Kreiger-Benson, and Ethan Ellestad of MaCCNO.

NOLADrinks Show – Music and Culture Coalition of New Orleans – Feb20Ep2

We start things off letting you know about this week’s show. We also tell you about next week – the return of our French Quarter Fest Series at Louisiana Music Factory!

Then we’re off to Tujague’s for our featured interview with the team from the Music and Culture Coalition of New Orleans (MaCCNO.) We’re joined by executive director Ethan Ellestad, Program Coordinator and Researcher Hannah Kreiger-Benson, and Community Engagement Coordinator Renard Bridgewater.

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We have a fascinating and important conversation about preserving and protecting the culture of the city and ensuring those that create it, the “culture bearers,” see benefits from the tourism economy. As we discuss often on the show, the tourism economy is the city’s key economic sector.

However, there is often a “disconnect” between the economy and who benefits from it. MaCCNO works closely with numerous cultural stakeholders to advocate on their behalf and shape policy around their interests. This includes musicians, those in the hospitality industry, and many others that we cherish locally but, also, “export” or “sell” to visitors.

We discuss this disconnect and how, often, our culture bearers are marginalized and left out, economically, from the tourism economy. Our conversation takes place against the backdrop of current and proposed changes to the organizations and financial structure that promote tourism in New Orleans.

Pictured above from left – MaCCNO Community Engagement Coordinator Renard Bridgewater, Program Coordinator and Researcher Hannah Kreiger-Benson, Bryan Dias of The NOLADrinks Show, and Executive Director Ethan Ellestad.

This includes a proposed “cultural fund” of $3.9 million dollars. Of course, “where the rubber hits the road” is key in this conversation and we chat about ideas on how this fund can best be put to use or, at the least, some of the perspective that we must have when administering the resources.

These are critical topics to all of us residents as well as visitors and fans of the city. We touch on traditions and cultures such as second lines, Mardi Gras Indians, and much more.

Ethan and Hannah stick around for “Another Shot with NOLADrinks” where we talk about the often confusing world of music venues and performance spaces and how this matters greatly to the larger cultural landscape.

You can subscribe to, stream, and download The NOLADrinks Show with Bryan Dias podcast using the links and player at the top of the post. Thanks to Tujague’s for hosting us!

Cheers, You All!

~ Bryan