Historic night spot, Dew Drop Inn, reopens with major renovations

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NEW ORLEANS (WGNO) — The historic night spot, The Dew Drop Inn, in Central City was once a haven for Black musicians during segregation. Now, it’s a new day for the redeveloped Dew Drop Inn.

It is a homecoming for musician Deacon John, who performed at the original Dew Drop Inn decades ago.

John is among many musicians who performed there, including the late Little Richard. Richard’s cousin Stanley B. Stewart made an appearance for the Dew Drop Inn’s grand reopening.

“This place meant so much to Richard. Really where he fine tuned his music,” Stewart said.

Stewart went on to say, “Think of what it was in the beginning. A sanctuary when things weren’t quite the way they should be, when the nation wasn’t fair or just.”

Developer Curtis Doucette said the major remodel has been a long time in the making, but well worth it.

The Dew Drop Inn: ‘The South’s Swankiest Night Club’ will be back in New Orleans

“I’m looking forward to people coming and experiencing the history, but also creating history,” Doucette said.

It’s a new day at the Dew Drop Inn with a new bar, a museum, 17 hotel rooms named after iconic musicians who played there, and the stage. Proving it’s always been about the music.

“Our goal is that we are creating a stage for each musician to come and do what we did in the past,” Doucette said.

It may be a new day for John, but it sure feels like the old days.

Friday, March 1 Grammy Award-winning Irma Thomas will be performing. She also played at the original Dew Drop Inn.

There are several events to celebrate the revival of The Dew Drop Inn.

Dew Drop Revival Night 1 – Friday, March 1. from 7 p.m. to 12 a.m.

This star-studded evening will honor the pioneers who made the Dew Drop the iconic venue that it was in the mid-20th century with a headlining performance from the Soul Queen of New Orleans, Irma Thomas, and performances from Deacon John, and the Dew Drop Legacy Revue Band, led by musical director Ron Jones, son of the late Joe Jones, pianist from one of the Dew Drop’s original house bands. The Dew Drop Legacy Revue Band comprises several of the city’s veteran musicians, many of whom are sons and daughters of the Dew Drop’s original players. D.J. Raj Smoove will spin an inspired opening set during cocktail hour and an R&B dance party following the live show. The show will begin at 8 p.m.

Dew Drop Revival Night 2 – Saturday, March 2. from 7 p.m. to 12 a.m.

Guests will celebrate New Orleans’ contemporary music stars with performances from hip-hop stalwarts Partners-N-Crime, Grammy Award nominees the New Breed Brass Band, plus special guest Tony Boyd-Cannon, hosted by bounce pioneer Mia X. The show will begin at 9 p.m.

Jazz Brunch at The Drop – Sunday, March 3. from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
The Dew Drop Inn will host the first in a series of Sundays jazz brunches, starring “The Baron of the Boom Boom” award-winning drummer Herlin Riley and the Herlin Riley Quartet featuring Chucky C. with special guest Delfeayo Marsalis. Brunch is served from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. with the last seating at 2:30 p.m.

Dusty Grooves Bar Night – Sunday, March 3. 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.
To wind-down the celebratory weekend, relax at the rebirth of Central City’s LaSalle Street jewel for cocktails, bar bites, and all-vinyl dusty grooves provided by D.J. Maxmillion from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.
The bar will be open from 5 p.m. to 12 a.m. DJ set will be from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. no cover.

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