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Trombone Shorty and Orleans Avenue make a big bang at The Fillmore

Trombone Shorty and Orleans Avenue make a big bang at The Fillmore

Words by: Steph Cunningham | Photos by: Alex Cason

As a short-heighted lover of brass instruments, growing up on the band Chicago and later finding my way to the ska scene, I will say that I was intrigued when I heard Trombone Shorty was playing at The Fillmore. Obviously, a short person playing the trombone is going to be awesome right (just me?).


I headed to YouTube to learn more and found a plethora of videos of Trombone Shorty, real name Troy Andrews, and his band Orleans Avenue. Troy was given the nickname Trombone Shorty, not because he’s actually short (a girl can hope), but because he’s been playing the instrument since he was a child and was literally shorter than all his fellow musicians. Among the videos, I found their performance on NPR’s Tiny Desk Concert series which showcased a mix of instrumental and lyrical songs and had the office staff dancing. The video has 549K views.


Now, thoroughly excited for the show Tuesday night, I walked in to The Fillmore ready for a New Orleans Jazz party. The theater filled up and the crowd had a definite aura surrounding them- jovial; laughter could be heard throughout the large room. Clearly, everyone had the same expectations and we were not let down.


When I’m at a concert, I want the band to bring their music to life, not just sound like the album at home on my laptop. When Trombone Shorty hit the stage with the six members of Orleans Avenue all around him, I knew this was going to be a true performance. Throughout the set, Shorty owned the stage – the entire stage. He played that horn to every corner of the audience, sometimes dancing from one end to the other. But he didn’t just play the trombone- that would be too, what, easy? He switched from trombone to trumpet, took over the drum set and sang on many of the songs with an ease that reminded the audience just how long he’s been performing live.


Mid-set, they performed one of his better known songs, “Here Come the Girls.” While the two sax players belted and danced in unison (they had me cheering the whole time), Troy had the audience moving and singing “girls” back to him during the chorus.


With Troy as their leader, the Orleans Avenue set was tight and flawless. All the guys on stage had a moment to shine, from the big guitar solo towards the end and the two saxes getting Shorty to dance. I walked around the room to take in the whole band from all the angles and every spot was a good spot. If you could take your eyes off Trombone Shorty, you had six other talented, enthusiastic musicians grabbing your attention.


Trombone Shorty owned the stage for almost two hours and gave the Fillmore’s crowd a show to remember. I would bet that many people woke up on Wednesday morning the way I woke up, dancing in their beds.  The show was nothing short of magical.


See full gallery of the night here.

Catch this tour:


Date Venue Location
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Oct 01 Ponte Vedra Concert Hall Ponte Vedra Beach, FL Tickets & More
Oct 10 Orpheum Theater Boston, MA Tickets & More
Oct 11 The Fillmore Philadelphia, PA Tickets & More
Oct 13 Terminal 5 New York, NY Tickets & More
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Oct 16 Pepsi Center Denver, CO Tickets & More
Oct 18 Gila River Arena Glendale, AZ Tickets & More
Oct 20 Palace Theater St Paul, MN Tickets & More
Oct 21 Riviera Theater Chicago, IL Tickets & More
Oct 23 Danforth Music Hall Toronto, Canada Tickets & More
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Oct 26 The Fillmore Detroit, MI Tickets & More
Oct 27 Egyptian Room at Old National Centre Indianapolis, IN Tickets & More
Oct 28 FreakFest Madison, WI Tickets & More
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Nov 07 Nospr Katowice, Poland Tickets & More
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Nov 10 Gorilla Manchester, United Kingdom Tickets & More
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Nov 15 Pandora Utrecht, Netherlands Tickets & More
Nov 16 Het Depot Leuven, Belgium Tickets & More
Nov 17 Columbia Theatre Berlin, Germany Tickets & More
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Dec 31 House of Blues Anaheim, CA Tickets & More
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