New Orleans, United States
Erika, 28
Artist
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What are the New Orleans spots a first-time visitor can’t miss?

Frenchmen Street for live music, Royal Street for art galleries, a streetcar ride through the Garden District, boiled seafood from one of the Cajun Seafood locations, beignets from Cafe du Monde, charbroiled oysters and Creole cuisine from Neyows, and I supposeeee checking out Bourbon Street to see what all the fuss is about. There are many tours to choose from but if you can book a swamp tour that place can be pretty magikal. Don't forget your bug spray!

What do you do and why do you do it?

I create. I am a singer, songwriter, and producer. I model and teach music as well. Music has always been a healer in my life and has helped me through the toughest of times. I hope to heal and inspire with my creations and journey. It might be that love song that gets you through your sleepless night or the bop that gets you going in the morning while you dance around the house in your undies. Creating vibes is what I do. Positive Vibes Only.

Which neighborhood is it best to experience during the day / night?

If we're talking about a one-stop shop for all things from shopping, eating, drinking, and partying I would have to go with the French Quarter. During the day grabbing a coffee or cocktail and taking a stroll down Royal Street to dip in and out of art galleries is a great option to start. There are many restaurants that offer great lunch specials such as Sobou, which is a part of the Commander's Palace family. Around the corner, you will find Nola Cycles where you can rent a bike or scooter to get off your feet for a bit and explore the quarter faster. Watch out for potholes! Happy Hours galore and lots of dinner options abound!

What’s the one place in New Orleans you think is underrated?

I would have to say my current neighborhood of Mid-City. There really are alot of hidden gems like Katie's restaurant, Evangeline Lounge, Vessel, and Bayou Wine and Beer Garden that are awesome spots to check out.

Where would you take a date for a romantic night out?

The Pontchartrain Hotel. They have a rooftop bar, Hot Tin, where you can enjoy tasty cocktails with a beautiful view of the city. The bar is located in an indoor portion as well as couches which is great for when the weather is less desirable. Following your cocktail hour or vice versa, you can enjoy dinner at Jack Rose on the 1st floor amidst the art of some amazing local artist such as Cyph, Gavin Jones, and Ashley Longshore ( That Lil' Wayne painting is BOSS). I try to order something new every time I go, and have never been disappointed.

Drunk and hungry - where do you go in New Orleans?

Verti Marte for sure! This 24 hour corner store never disappoints. If I'm drunk and hungry, I'm looking for a meal that will fill my belly and wont break the bank not some fancy shmacy restaurant. SO!.. a Poboy it is. I am a seafood lover so I usually get a shrimp and oyster poboy, but the "All That Jazz" will leave you in a food coma. Note: There is no seating and it is CASH ONLY.

It's freeeeezing out - what should a visitor do?

If it's freezing out I would get lost in one of New Orleans many museums and art galleries, the aquarium, or get dinner and drinks at a jazz show at Snug Harbor in the evening.

Which local creators do you admire?

The city of New Orleans has so much to offer and has birthed so many multi-talented artist like Pro$per Jones and Cyph who both are musical creators and well as visual artists, Tank and The Bangas a band that you MUST see live but until then you should check them out on all digital platforms, Brandan "Bmike" Odums who is a staple in the community. You can see his murals all over NOLA and now in many cities around the globe.

You’re meeting the mayor of New Orleans - what constructive criticism would you give them?

Fix the damn pumps!

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