COVID Check-In with Michael Tisserand

Virtual Memories Show
COVID Check-In: Michael Tisserand

“Normal is just a Martin Mull album.”

Author Michael Tisserand checks in from New Orleans. We talk about how his wife (a pediatrician) got through her recent bout with COVID-19, how the city has had to change its traditions and practices even when jazz funerals beckon, the Krazy Kat strips that are giving him solace, the comparisons with Katrina, and more. Give it a listen! And go read Michael’s biography of George Herriman, KRAZY!

“I’ve been reading a lot of Krazy Kat strips, with a new eye.”

Listen to the conversation! Then check out the archives for more conversations from The Before Times.

You can listen to all these COVID Check-In episodes at The COVID-19 Sessions.

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About our Guest

Michael Tisserand is a New Orleans-based writer whose most recent book is Krazy: George Herriman, a Life in Black and White — the first full-length biography of cartoonist George Herriman, the creator of Krazy Kat . His other books include The Kingdom of Zydeco and Sugarcane Academy: How a New Orleans Teacher and His Storm-Struck Students Created a School to Remember. Michael’s work has appeared in the Oxford American, The Nation, The Progressive, and on WBEZ-FM Chicago. The former editor of New Orleans’ Gambit Weekly, Michael’s eleven-part Katrina series “Submerged” was published in alternative newsweeklies across the country. He has appeared on “To the Point” and was a frequent guest on Philip Adams’ “Late Night Live,” and can be seen in the documentaries Dear Mr. Watterson and Zydeco Crossroads. Michael is represented by Gary Morris at the David Black Agency.

When not writing, Michael coaches scholastic chess and organizes the annual New Orleans Chess Fest, and is a founding member of the Laissez Boys Social Aide and Leisure Club, a Mardi Gras parading organization. Michael lives in New Orleans with his wife and children. He happily answers emails at

Credits: The conversation was recorded remotely via Zencastr. I used a Heil PR-40 Dynamic Studio Recording Microphone feeding into a Cloudlifter CL-1 and a Mackie Onyx Blackjack 2×2 USB Recording Interface. All processing and editing done in Adobe Audition CC. Photos of Michael & his wife by him, but they’re on my instagram.

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