St. Charles friends make funkadelic hit on N.O. scene

Band played Old U.S. Mint, recording

Playing Jazz Fest is the dream gig for Noisewater, but in the meantime this funkadelic band with members from St. Rose and Luling is making a noise on the New Orleans music scene.

“We had some real good traction with a beautiful performance at the Old U.S. Mint near the French Market,” said Ole Oddlokken, the band’s saxophone player who lives in St. Rose.

Considered a major move for the group, the band recently performed as part of the Louisiana Museum Foundation’s internationally recognized historical music collection, said Oddlokken, a native of Norway who followed his wife to New Orleans.

Noisewater’s concert was part of the foundation’s Music at the Mint event, which is about digitizing and archiving concerts to broaden the understanding and activities of Louisiana’s musical history.

Soon after this performance for the group came Jazz in the Park in Armstrong Park, also in New Orleans. The band shared the stage with the nationally touring act, The Soul Rebels, in a concert that also featured local greats like Kermit Ruffins, Allen Toussaint and The Wild Magnolias.

Calling themselves an instrumental funk band, Oddlokken said their music is mostly original. He equates their sound to that of longtime funk-based bands Galactic and The Meters, both in New Orleans.

But Oddlokken said the sound can reflect their background in music, which can range from metal, Big Band, jazz and even progressive rock, that represents what they consider their “rocking edge” that is sure to groove.

“All this stuff coming together is a funky band with a rock touch to it,” he said. “It can get a little heavy and distorted. We sell ourselves as a funk rock band, but the heavy metal rock band sneaks in sometimes.”

Formed in 2010, the band consists of Oddlokken and guitarist Cody Fahnestock, both of St. Rose; guitarist Brandon Hotard of Norco, bass player John Meunier Jr. of Metairie, drummer Chad Toups of Baton Rouge and New Orleans, and keyboard and harmonica player Chad Charlile of Tuscaloosa, Ala.

The band has been playing together for five years.The group’s name came from the movie,  “Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy.”

On Oct. 15 and 16, they took another major step together as a band when they record 10 to 11 songs at Word of Mouth Studios. The titles include “Funkoteque” and even “Soul Glo.” But there are also homegrown song titles, including “Jambalaya” and “Peaches and Cream” that they also plan on recording.

These songs may also be released on DVD soon from their “Live at the Mint” performance.

The songs are written collaboratively.

“We’re pretty much all writing together,” Oddlokken said. “Someone brings an idea and we all put our input into it.”

With social media, they’ve been able to grow fans in live performances with some of their recordings online. They have also performed at longtime recognized music hot spots, including Tipitina’s in New Orleans.

They’ve made several appearances on WWL-TV’s Morning Show, WWOZ, WTUL, Howlin Wolf and numerous festivals such as NOLA Food Fest, Palmer Park Art Market and the Rock N Roll Mardi Gras Marathon.

They haven’t given up their day jobs yet.

But Oddlokken said their future as a band is certainly encouraging with recent breakthroughs.

“We play throughout the South and hope to spread it out further,” he said. “And the last two weeks have been really good for us.”


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