New Orleans: Smile Upon Your Soul

Friends often kid me about the amount of lyrical content that deals with food in my songs.  Well, here I am where that first began, New Orleans.  Back in 1983, I wrote a song about The Camellia Grill on South Carrollton inspired by my first visit to that great diner then known mostly to locals.  Ever since, culinary and restaurant references have crept into my music quite naturally.  I have never set out to “write a food song,” but occasionally, references to what I enjoy eating seem relevant to what I am writing.

Such is the case with “Smile Upon Your Soul,” a tune that occurred to me in 2008 when I sat down to write before lunch one day.  I got to thinking about what I’d like for lunch and the lyrics occurred to me.  This week, I’m on a mission to eat my way through the lyrics of the song.  Here are the song lyrics annotated with the places that can be accomplished.  Listen to Smile Upon Your Soul here!

Bon appetite and may you always have a Smile Upon Your Soul!

Smile Upon Your Soul
Red beans & rice, crawfish etoufee (Market Café)
That’s the kind of groceries that I want today
A whole muffalotta wid a ice-cold beer (Napoleon House)

Got a “muffalotta” with this at Napoleon House

Where you gonna find that kinda dinner round here
You point it South and you let it roll
Gumbo (Remoulade – Arnaud’s) in your mouth’ll put a Smile Upon Your Soul
Jambalaya (Napoleon House) I could eat all night
It’s that Cajun sweat that makes it taste just right
Grillades and grits down at the Marigny (Café Marigny)
Pfister Sisters heavenly harmony (various music venues & JazzFest)
Mudbugs in a pot, let boiling water roll
Crawfish (Acme Oyster House) in your mouth’ll put a Smile Upon Your Soul
Pile some shrimp upon French bread until you got a mess
Mayo, lettuce and tomato (and a pickle for Mitch)
Now yo’ Po-Boy’s (Mother’s, Acme Oyster House) dressed
Don’t worry if the shrimp fall out and get all over you
‘Cause everybody else is chasing down them critters, too (JazzFest)
I’d like to have some good trout amandine (Irene’s Cuisine)
Or maybe Eggplant Josephine (Olivier’s – eggplant Napoleon – see footnote)
And bread puddin’ for dessert (Irene’s Cuisine)
A Bloody Mary (Remoulade – or anywhere) might not hurt
Have some rice and Shrimp Creole (Market Café)
Speckled trout (Mandina’s) inside your mouth’ll put a Smile Upon Your Soul
Crawfish in your mouth’ll put a Smile Upon Your Soul
Gumbo in your mouth’ll put a Smile Upon Your Soul
Words & Music ©2008, Les Kerr ASCAP Publisher: O.N.U. Music ASCAP
Footnote: Eggplant Josephine was a companion dish to Eggplant Napoleon served at the old White Pillars Restaurant in Biloxi, Mississippi in the 1970s. I have not found it anywhere since then but Eggplant Napoleon is just dandy, so get that instead, even if it doesn’t rhyme with “amandine!”

Text and photos copyright 2012 Les Kerr

Learn More about Les, sign up for mailing list & free song downloads at


About Les Kerr

Les Kerr is a songwriter, recording artist, journalist and author originally from the Gulf Coast now based in Nashville, Tennessee. Learn More about Les at
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2 Responses to New Orleans: Smile Upon Your Soul

  1. Libby Lu says:

    Okay, now I’m starving and missing NOLA. Thanks for that. 🙂 Love it. Last time we were there, we were touring colleges with our child and had dinner at Napolean’s. YUM. I recognized several of our favorite places and dishes in your brilliant lyrics, Mr. K.
    Thanks for making me smile,

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