The Fens

The Fens

BandAlternativeSinger/Songwriter

Moody, funny songs. Very New Orleans-- sometimes people dance all night, other times they sit and hang on every word.

Biography

Played our first show July 8, 1998 on Decatur Street in the French Quarter. Stopped counting personnel changes after the twelfth lineup. Can't tell you how many shows we've done. Have recorded half a dozen albums but only officially released one. Each lineup becomes insanely tight from playing weekly gigs in New Orleans.

The one member who has been in every version of the Fens is Peter Orr, a magazine editor from New York who wound up filling in for Mike West's bass player during the summer of 1994 and never escaped the entertainment field. In addition to playing well over 2,000 shows with West over the subsequent eleven years, Orr performed with Myshkin (notably at her stunning 2001 Jazz Fest performance), Cajun legend Jonno Frischberg, Lynn Drury, Jim Smith & the Damn Frontier, Laura Freeman, Irish bruisers the Shy Teds, Pistol Pete & Popgun Paul, and a great many others. Orr's work with the Fens has led the Louisiana music journal OffBeat to label him (in a headline, no less) one of "New Orleans' Best and Weirdest Songwriters." Orr's songwriting has led him to major attention in the New Orleans theater world, where his Tom Lehrer-style comedic tunes have featured in stage shows by Chris Champagne and other comic geniuses you've never heard of. To many locals, Orr is best known for composing and performing the songs in Times-Picayune columnist Chris Rose's shows "The Asshole Monologues," "The Galatoire's Monologues," and "I Love My Kids, But..."

The Fens have shared bills with the Two Gallants, the Subdudes, and a great many others.

Discography

Nobody Likes Sneaky Pete (UTR Records, 2003): Several of these songs received airplay in New Orleans and the parts of Mississippi and Florida where we play often.

Set List

We have a repertoire of well over 100 original songs. We cover a handful of songs by other Ninth Ward songwriters we know. For some reason we do peculiar dance arrangements of quite a few Mississippi John Hurt songs.