Home » Jazz Articles » Album Review » Peter Novelli: St. Amant Sessions


Peter Novelli: St. Amant Sessions


Sign in to view read count
Peter Novelli: St. Amant Sessions
Peter Novelli's St. Amant Sessions smacks of Tab Benoit's The Sea Saint Sessions (Telarc, 2003). For Benoit, the significance of Sea Saint Studios is that they are a NOLA landmark founded by Allen Toussaint. For Novelli, St. Amant, LA is up I-10 between NOLA and Baton Rouge. There, Brignac's Sound Shack resides and this is where, Novelli recorded his third collection, St. Amant Sessions. Both men play a brand of American and blues that can immediately be identified as from Louisiana. However, the two approach their treatments of Louisiana music differently.

Where Benoit hails from Houma, deep in the Louisiana swampland, Novelli comes from further north. Benoit's music is infused with Zydeco, particularly in the shuffling rhythm that propels a good many of his songs. Novelli pours a more solid blues-rock foundation for his music that, while retaining the NOLA shuffle, bears a sharper edge, honed with jazz and country overtones and a heapin' slab of southern-fried backbeat. Novelli opens the disc with the rave-up "Louisiana Sunrise," featuring one Sonny Landreth playing his surgically-accurate slide guitar. It is a fine performance over a sauntering twelve-bar figure that sets the stage for the rest of the recording. Landreth is like cayenne, lime and garlic, his contributions improve everything they are a part of.

Novelli possesses a guitar capability that is heads and shoulders above many of his contemporaries. He is playing is facile and intelligent across the sub-genre of his oeuvre. He peppers St. Amant Sessions with powerful instrumentals. "Boudin" features his precise and slashing guitar playing over a Meters funk motif. Drummer Brian Brignac is afforded space to display his wares among Novelli's sparks. It is jazz by any other name. "Shreveport Stomp" includes elements of the Beatles, Bill Haley and Jerry Reed in Novelli's guitar playing. He hits on his country cylinders. "I-10 Boogie" pulls out all stops as a bar- walking, trash talking, instrumental where Novelli shows what he is made of. It is "pots on...gas on high."

Track Listing

1. Lousiana Sunrise 2. Boudin 3. Je Ne Sais Quoi 4. Spirit Passing By 5. Bourbon Street Blues; 6. Woman in My Dreams 7. Story In Your Mind; 8. Shreveport Stomp 9. Thinkin’ or Drinkin’ 10. I-10 Boogie; 11. Zyedco Ride.


Peter Novelli
guitar, electric
Kevin McKendree
Sonny Landreth
guitar, slide
Chubby Carrier

Peter Novelli: lead vocals, author, Co- Producer; Brian Brignac: percussion, Co- Producer, Engineer (Friendly Fish Studios, St. Amant, LA); Sonny Landreth: slide guitar (1); Roy "Chubby" Carrier: triple row accordion, frottoir (10, 11); Elaine Foster: backing vocals ( ); Bobby Henderson: tenor saxophone (7), backing vocals (1, 6, 7, 9); Sammy Naquin: single row accordion (3, 9), vocal (9); Joseph Crachiola: (photography); Pedro Bonilla: (photography). Mixed and mastered by Tony Daigle at Electric Comoland (LaFayette, LA).

Album information

Title: St. Amant Sessions | Year Released: 2015 | Record Label: Chalet Music LLC



For the Love of Jazz
Get the Jazz Near You newsletter All About Jazz has been a pillar of jazz since 1995, championing it as an art form and, more importantly, supporting the musicians who create it. Our enduring commitment has made "AAJ" one of the most culturally important websites of its kind, read by hundreds of thousands of fans, musicians and industry figures every month.

You Can Help
To expand our coverage even further and develop new means to foster jazz discovery and connectivity we need your help. You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky ads plus provide access to future articles for a full year. This winning combination will vastly improve your AAJ experience and allow us to vigorously build on the pioneering work we first started in 1995. So enjoy an ad-free AAJ experience and help us remain a positive beacon for jazz by making a donation today.


Chris Rottmayer
Town of Two Faces
The Choir Invisible with Charlotte Greve, Vinnie...
They Tried to Kill Me Yesterday
Paul R. Harding / Michael Bisio / Juma Sultan
Eagle's Point
Chris Potter


Jazz Hands
Bob James
London Afrobeat Collective
Light Streams
John Donegan - The Irish Sextet

Get more of a good thing!

Our weekly newsletter highlights our top stories, our special offers, and upcoming jazz events near you.