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Gaylon LeBlanc collected souvenirs. Tonight, he fingered the shriveled object in the pocket of his jacket, thinking about the next addition he was about to add to his collection. Drumming, echoing from the cultural center farther up in Louis Armstrong Memorial Park, drowned out the commotion of nearby Bourbon Street. LeBlanc paid no attention, intent only upon the arrival of Mambo Aghnee and his impending task.
A group of local musicians met regularly at the cultural center to recreate and preserve the art of voodoo drumming, a primitive percussion form that preceded the birth of the blues and New Orleans jazz. Tonight, the musicians had no idea their frenetic tempo would backdrop an actual Vodoun ceremony that would ultimately culminate in torture and death.