New Orleans singer, songwriter, producer, and multi-instrumentalist Shamarr Allen has released his newest album, True Orleans 2, a jubilant collection of original songs that melds the diverse styles of the Crescent City. The newest offering highlights Allen’s mastery in fusing jazz, R&B, hip-hop and soul and marks a new era for the talented musician. PRESS HERE to listen.
True Orleans 2 was recorded and produced by Allen at his New Orleans studio and features the multi-talent on trumpet, trombone, drums, keyboards, and bass. The album includes a new version of the hometown favorite “Weekend Dance” featuring guest appearances by G. Love and Dee-1. The 13-track album marks Allen’s first collection of new music in five years and follows his previous albums: Box Who In? (2009), 504-799-8147 (2011), and True Orleans (2018), the latter of which featured the local viral singalong “Hit the Sean Payton,” a paean to the New Orleans Saints’ Super Bowl-winning coach.
True Orleans 2 features Allen’s latest single, “Internet Troll Anthem,” features New Orleans-based vocalist and performer James Martin. Humorous and timely, “Internet Troll Anthem” gives a literal middle finger to the chaotic state of internet culture and social media. The profane and hilarious track is an unexpected fusion of soul, hip-hop, and gospel that is quintessential Shamarr. PRESS HERE to watch the official music video for “Internet Troll Anthem,” which features New Orleans-based vocalist and performer James Martin.
Shamarr Allen is currently on the road supporting True Orleans 2 with headlining shows confirmed across the U.S. through the fall. Visit www.shamarrallen.com for all dates and ticketing information.
Active professionally in his hometown since his teens as a member of the Rebirth Brass Band, Shamarr is a stylistic synthesist who brings together many sounds indigenous to New Orleans, often in the same surprising track: the city’s traditional brass bands; the in-the-alley R&B of such ‘50s giants as Fats Domino; the steamy funk of ‘60s and ‘70s stars like the Meters and Allen Toussaint; the hard-hitting ‘90s rap of such breakout Cash Money and No Limit stars as Master P and Lil’ Wayne; and the booty-shaking bounce of new-millennium performers like Big Freedia (who was featured on “The Greatest Place in the World,” the lead-off track on the first True Orleans). But his sources run well outside of the city limits, with Allen naming Willie Nelson as his favorite songwriter and Prince, Pharrell Williams, Stevie Wonder, Quincy Jones, and many others as influences, thus resulting in what Shamarr has dubbed “bridge music” because of the way his music bridges a variety of styles and people. The versatile Allen has since collaborated with everyone from local icons such as Galactic and Harry Connick and international stars like Patti LaBelle, Lenny Kravitz, and Willie Nelson.
A turning point for Allen’s career came in 2009, when he not only released his debut album but had the honor of performing the National Anthem for President Obama in New Orleans, which resulted in an invitation to play at the esteemed Governor’s Ball at the White House. Since then, Allen has served as an official musical ambassador for the U.S. traveling to Brazil, Kazakhstan, Kurdistan, Uzbekistan, Azerbaijan, and the Congo.
Though he’s traveled the world on behalf of his country, some of Allen’s most important charitable work takes place in his own backyard. For the past decade, Shamarr has been teaching music to local children, free of charge, at weekly sessions held in his mother’s home, with some of these students even performing at Allen’s Jazz Fest dates. And in 2020, Allen launched his Trumpet Is My Weapon gun exchange program after a nine-year-old was killed and two other youngsters were wounded in a New Orleans shooting. Giving away some of his own horns and using donations and money raised online to buy instruments, Allen offered a trumpet to any New Orleans youth who turns in a gun — free of charge, no questions asked.
True Orleans 2 Track Listing:
1. I’m Here
2. Dance With Me
3. Best Friend
4. Internet Troll Anthem
5. Weekend Dance (Remix) ft. G Love and Dee-1
6. Fly High
7. Count Your Blessings
8. Enjoying My Life
9. Ass Everywhere
10. Keep Your Love
11. Let Me Be
12. Like This
13. Where Ya From