I admit it. I’m an over-the-top Joss Stone fan.

Rumor has it, she’ll be in New Orleans from January to March shooting a movie.

I’m happy to say that I was at both of her first two shows in the US at Joe’s Pub in NYC before she “hit.” Friends couldn’t understand why I was so over the moon about a 16 year old soul singer from Devon, UK. Now they get it. She’s got an ear and a set of pipes that are second to no one.

From all appearances, she’s also a very down-to-earth and good-hearted person. And, if past is prologue, her stay in New Orleans is going to make her an even deeper musician.

Someone should write a book just about all the musicians who went through massive personal and musical transformations as a result of spending a little time immersed in the heart of America’s music universe.

Ray Charles and Ornette Coleman are just two names that pop to mind. And don’t forget young Elvis Presley and John Lennon glued to their Fats Domino records.

If America every paid New Orleans back for what it did for American music, its streets would be paved with gold.

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