New Orleans Jazz All-Stars 2009

Our 20th Class

Dwayne Paulin

PHOTOGRAPHED BY GREG MILES

Ideal vision, we are told, is 20-20 and as we present our 20th class of Jazz-All Stars we see two decades of greatness and a talent pool that hasn’t been diminished. As always we present our All-Stars as two complete but non-existent bands – one traditional, the other contemporary. Selections are based from among those performers who continue to live and work mostly in this area. It is great to see such a promising list, and even better to hear.

CONTEMPORARY JAZZ

ALONZO BOWENS 
Compared to many New Orleans musicians, Alonzo Bowens considers himself to have gotten a late start in music – at the ripe old age of 14. That holds some credibility as he grew up in the musically rich Tremé neighborhood where 4- and 5-year-olds can be found trying their hands on an instrument. Bowens began blowing tenor sax at Andrew Bell Jr. High School where teacher Alvin Thomas saw potential in the young man and advised him to “stick with the music.” Beyond involvement in school bands, the saxophonist’s main focus was on the pop music emanating from the radio – groups, he says, like Earth, Wind & Fire. While at John McDonough High School he played with numerous neighborhood cover bands. “There were bands on every corner,” Bowens remembers, “so if you didn’t make it with one, you’d just go to another.” He wasn’t really drawn to jazz until he was a student at Southern University of New Orleans and he had the opportunity to hear the great saxophonist Cannonball Adderley. “I said, OK, this is what I want to do.” Naturally, SUNO saxophonist and educator Kidd Jordan (All-Star 1993) was very influential to him and Bowens also cites other great New Orleans sax men like Fred Kemp (All-Star 1996), Ralph Johnson (All-Star 1996) and Alvin “Red” Tyler (All-Star 1990) as being significant in his musical life. After a brief sojourn to Atlanta, he returned to SUNO and earned a bachelor degree in music education. His first teaching job was at Carter G. Wooten Jr. Presently he’s employed by Lusher Charter School. Bowens moves easily between traditional and modern jazz styles. He also never really deserted New Orleans rhythm and blues and funk, that he played in groups like Vietnam and the Original Uptown Allstars. For the last 10 years, the saxophonist has been a vital part of Dr. John’s horn section. He also arranged five of the tunes on the good doctor’s 2008 Grammy-winning album, City That Care Forgot.
Quotable: “Music is the great communication vehicle. It’s an opportunity for you to portray your feelings of happiness and sadness. Basically, that’s why I’m involved, because it’s so emotional.”

INSTRUMENT: Saxophone, Clarinet and Flute BIRTHPLACE: New Orleans AGE: 53 PRESENT WORK: Dr. John, Delfeayo Marsalis (All-Star 1994), Sharon Martin, Jamil Sharif (All-Star 2007), New Orleans Saxophone Quartet PAST WORK: Ellis Marsalis (All-Star 1990), Wynton Marsalis, George French (All-Star 1995), Bob French (All-Star 1998), Thomas Jefferson, George Porter RECORDINGS: Leroy Jones (All-Star 1991), Dr. John, Don Vappie (All-Star 1995), Lucien Barbarin (All-Star 1991), Sharon Martin, George Porter, Delfeayo Marsalis. WHERE TO SEE: Snug Harbor, Sweet Lorraine’s, Maison Bourbon, Palmetto’s, Jazz Fest, French Quarter Fest.

SAM HENRY 
“If there’s music, I play it,” declares Sam Henry, whose main act is piano though he’s also performed on saxophone, trumpet, violin, bass, drums and just about any instrument in arms’ reach. His stylistic range is as broad, having played modern and traditional jazz, classical music and rhythm and blues. Henry began his musical adventures at age 4. He was at a band rehearsal at Craig Elementary School, where his mother taught, and another child left the room. He picked up the kid’s alto saxophone and began blowing. He impressed the band teacher who told his mother he should pursue music. He got a sax that very evening. At around age 6, Henry attended the Xavier Junior School of Music where he studied classical piano and violin and at Xavier Prep High School he blew trumpet. (The legendary pianist James Booker was there during the same period, playing tenor sax). The pianist was only 15 when he entered Xavier University, where he took up music therapy and received a degree in music education. He played some jazz with fellow students but the school discouraged it deeming it “devil music.” While still a teenager, he played string bass with an ensemble led by Raymond Ancar. Though he was accomplished as a classical musician, he says that at that time the symphony wasn’t open to blacks. Some of his first jazz gigs were with the likes of trumpeter John Brunious and bassist Chuck Badie exploring modern jazz. Teaching has long been a part of Henry’s life. When he graduated from Xavier he taught strings in Arkansas and New York and returned to New Orleans in 1965 to work as an itinerant music teacher in the public school system. During this time he formed the rhythm and blues-flavored Sam Henry & the Soul Machine that included Aaron and Cyril Neville and gigged on Bourbon Street with John Brunious and Al Hirt. In ’77 he had the opportunity to make a world tour with renowned guitarist and vocalist Ritchie Havens. In the ’80s, Henry led trios and quartets and formed the modern jazz group Sam Henry & the Associates that included his wife. He continued to teach and gig until Hurricane Katrina. He just returned from Texas about six months ago but an injury has kept him off the music scene. He looks forward to the release of his new album by his group Sam Henry and a Gathering of Friends.
Quotable: “Music was truly a gift to me. It’s the greatest gift in the world and I love sharing it with the children.”

INSTRUMENT: Piano BIRTHPLACE: New Orleans AGE: 69 PRESENT WORK: As leader, Wardell Quezergue (All-Star 2002) PAST WORK: Sam Henry & the Americans, Sam Henry & Associates, Soul Machine, John Brunious (All-Star 2001), Chuck Badie (All-Star 1993), Clyde Kerr Sr., Ritchie Havens, Ramsey Lewis, Kermit Ruffins (All-Star 1998), Don Vappie (All-Star 1995), Wanda Rouzan (All-Star 2003), Juanita Brooks (All-Star 2006) RECORDINGS: Sam & the Soul Machine, Allen Toussaint, Patti LaBelle, Etta James, James Taylor.
 

JULIAN GARCIA 
Scanning Julian Garcia’s “present work,” it’s clear that he could easily fit into either the contemporary or traditional jazz line-ups. It is quite an accomplishment to have the ability to play in the free style with master Kidd Jordan and be up to performing New Orleans classic jazz with clarinetist Louis Ford. The native Honduran began his musical journey playing in his junior high school band in the Bronx, where he and his family moved when he was 4. He arrived in New Orleans when he was 15 and soon auditioned for the New Orleans Center for the Creative Arts. The drummer’s first professional gig was playing in the Caribbean style with Rudy Mills’ band. After graduating from NOCCA, he had the opportunity to share a bandstand with pianist and educator Ellis Marsalis performing at LeClub in the Hyatt Regency Hotel and attended Southern University of New Orleans for a year. During this era he supplied the rhythm behind the piano of Harry Connick Jr. at another now-defunct nightspot, Nexus. He remained behind the drums when David Torkanowsky (All-Star 1991) took over the keyboards in a group that included bassist Chris Severin (All-Star 1994) and Victor Goines. That gig lasted five years. Noah’s on Esplanade was also a hot spot for modern jazz in the early 1980s, and Garcia got to play behind greats like saxophonist Eddie Harris and trumpeter Donald Byrd as well as our own vocalist, Lady BJ. Garcia moved to New York in 1988, took some classes and made some gigs, primarily with organist Rahn Burton. About a year later, he returned to New Orleans and worked day jobs and sometimes with violinist Michael Ward (All-Star 2001). There was a period when Garcia pretty much vanished from the New Orleans jazz scene. It wasn’t until the late ’90s that he reemerged. He credits exploring a new way of utilizing his drums, a solo drum approached called the melodic ostimato technique, for inspiring him to play again. He also began researching his ethnic Garinagu heritage, producing a solo recording of the music, “Garifuna Story” and receiving a Louisiana Fellowship Award to perform the work.
Quotable: “I just try to have fun.”

INSTRUMENT: Drums BIRTHPLACE: LeSabe, Honduras AGE: 46 PRESENT WORK: Louis Ford (All-Star 2007), Carl LeBlanc (All-Star 2007), Leah Chase (All-Star 2009), Larry Sieberth (All-Star 1998), Fred Sanders (All-Star 2006), Chuck Perkins, Kidd Jordan (All-Star 1993), Troi Bechet Past Work: Ellis Marsalis (All-Star 1990), Rick Trolsen (All-Star 1998), Earl Turbinton (All-Star 1992), Walter Payton (All-Star 1993), Sharon Martin, Mem Shannon, Loren Pickford RECORDINGS: Solo, Kent Jordan (All-Star 1993), Topsy Chapman (All-Star 2006) Louis Ford, Brian Quezergue WHERE TO SEE: Snug Harbor, Donna’s, Sweet Lorraine’s, Maison Bourbon, Jazz Fest.
 

TODD DUKE 
Todd Duke’s interest in music was sparked by his parent’s diverse record collection that ranged from Bobby “Blue” Bland and Fats Domino to Miles Davis. He began playing guitar at age 8 and naturally dug into the rock ‘n’ roll of the times. “I liked the sound of the guitar and thought it looked cool and looked like a lot of fun,” Duke says of his choice of instrument. Steve Cropper was an early influence and later Duke moved onto the blues. All the while, New Orleans music surrounded him, though in the background. He was exposed to more of it when he and his father, who lived in the French Quarter, would hang out at clubs and check out the jukeboxes that were filled with this city’s music. The guitarist became more conscious of jazz when he attended Slidell High School. He began to explore his parents’ albums as well as thumb through racks at record stores. There he discovered jazz guitarists like George Benson and Kenny Burrell. “Jazz guitar really bit me,” he remembers. Duke attended the New Orleans Center for the Creative Arts for two years. He describes studying with guitar master Hank Mackie as offering him “a lifetime of knowledge.” Duke graduated from NOCCA in 1989, but didn’t feel he was good enough to pursue the music and so got a day job. He returned to the scene in ’91 playing rhythm and blues with vocalist Yufus Hawkins at Basin Street’s Colt 38. He dug it because many “old cats” would sit in including the great Ernie K-Doe. It also offered him the opportunity to learn and play a lot of standards. Duke said “goodbye to day jobs forever” once he began a seven-night-a-week gig with saxophonist Jerry Jumonville. The guitarist gained greater recognition on the scene playing Monday nights at Donna’s with drummer Bob French. He also met many musicians there like trumpeter Leroy Jones and drummers Shannon Powell and Bunchy Johnson (All-Star 2000) with whom he would eventually play. Duke credits Johnson for introducing him to Wardell Quezergue that led to a spot in the leader and arranger’s big band. The guitarist moves easily and regularly between playing modern and traditional jazz. Presently, he’s probably most recognized for his always savory accompaniment with John Boutte at the vocalist’s regular Saturday night date at d.b.a.
Quotable: “It’s all about time.”

INSTRUMENT: Guitar BIRTHPLACE: New Orleans AGE: 39 PRESENT WORK: John Boutte (All-Star 2005), Leroy Jones (All-Star 1991), George French (All-Star 1995), Shannon Powell (All-Star 1995), Germaine Bazzle (All-Star 1993) PAST WORK: Wardell Quezergue (All-Star 2002), Tim Laughlin (All-Star 2000), Bob French (All-Star 1998), Banu Gibson (All-Star 2007), John Ellis, Hot Club of New Orleans, leader New World Funk Ensemble WHERE TO SEE: d.b.a., Dos Jefes, Donna’s, Sweet Lorraine’s, Jazz Fest, French Quarter Fest
 

LEAH CHASE 
The daughter of trumpeter and bandleader Dookie Chase and restaurateur and namesake Leah Chase, vocalist Leah Chase grew up surrounded by music and undoubtedly good food. She cites her father’s love of jazz and her mother’s penchant for vocalists like Johnny Mathis as influencing her musical preferences – jazz and ballads. As a child, she became aware of her vocal abilities after winning praise for a performance and thereafter she was often called on to sing at various events. Chase joined the high school choir at Xavier Prep and studied voice and piano at Xavier University Junior School of Music. Singing in the New Orleans Recreation Department Theater’s production of Hallelujah Baby offered her further experience. She considers her first “professional” gigs as singing pop hits with a group called Market and also portraying a “woman of the blues” in a Las Vegas-type show. While Chase was majoring in classical voice at Loyola University, where she earned a degree in vocal performance, she also participated in the jazz band. The mezzo-soprano went on to study classically at the Julliard School of Music but after a year, she says she realized that the style “wasn’t where I think I live.” It was the late 1970s when Chase came back home and got a job at the Chateau Sonesta, where she spent a year doing what she describes as a cabaret show. When her pianist, Craig Fisher, decided to head to California she went, too. During her 12 years on the West Coast she had the opportunity to sing more jazz. “I’m most comfortable with jazz,” she says. “I like the freedom you have to create.” After the sudden death of her sister in ’90, Chase returned to New Orleans to help out at her mother’s restaurant, Dookie Chase, “It was time to come back – it was good to have my daughter around family.” She got back into singing again when Dolores Marsalis, the wife of pianist Ellis Marsalis, asked if she would perform at a program for St. Mary’s High School. Afterward, Dolores said, “You really ought to be doing this.” She has been back on the scene ever since, leading groups filled with New Orleans finest. Chase is also an adjunct professor at Loyola and Tulane universities and the University of New Orleans, as well as being involved with Delfeayo Marsalis’ children’s program. Many would agree that if Chase hadn’t chosen music as a career, she might have considered being a stand-up comedian – she’s damn funny.
Quotable: “Don’t sweat the small stuff – it’s all small stuff.”

INSTRUMENT: Vocals BIRTHPLACE: New Orleans AGE: Won’t say Present Work: Leader, Michael Pellera (All-Star 1993), Phillip Manuel (All-Star 2000), Jesse Boyd (All-Star 2009) Past Work: Larry Sieberth (All-Star 1998), Matt Lemmler, Mike Esnault, David Torkanowsky (All-Star 1991), Ed Petersen (All-Star 1998) WHERE TO SEE: Windsor Court Hotel, Snug Harbor, Sweet Lorraine’s, Jazz Fest, French Quarter Fest, Satchmo Fest
 

CHARLES MOORE 
Charles Moore is best recognized playing jump blues with his brother, guitarist and vocalist Deacon John. After all, he has been a member of the Ivories since 1968 when he was just 17 years old. Through the decades, however, the bassist has always gigged with other musicians playing modern jazz, big band sounds, funk and rhythm and blues. He has also recorded six albums of Creole folk music and related styles with his sister, poet and author Sybil Kein, on which he’d often accompany on guitar. Moore began primarily studying classical guitar when he was around 13 and picked up the bass when he was a student at St. Augustine High School. During these years, he played proms and the like with a band called Rhythms Unlimited. That is about the time brother Deacon took notice and asked him to join his band that then included jazzers like saxophonist James Rivers and trumpeter Alvin Alcorn plus gospel giant, pianist Sammy Berfect. After jobs with Deacon playing electric bass on the sounds of the day – Jimi Hendrix, the Beatles, Cream – Moore would go out and listen to jazz and remembers checking out Wynton Marsalis. “I’m a night owl,” he confesses, adding that he’d play with whoever had a gig and in any style – jazz, blues, rock, reggae, gospel. “I learned a lot from the people who inspired me,” he says naming keyboardist Wilson “Willie Tee” Turbinton (All-Star 2003) in particular. He credits vocalist Germaine Bazzle with showing him how to be a pro. The bassist was an original member of the funkified Uptown Allstars and co-wrote the group’s tune, “Sister Rosa Parks.” Playing upright bass – his sister gave him his first acoustic – is a more recent development for Moore. He’s heard on the instrument most playing traditional jazz and standards with drummer Sullivan Dabney. For many years, Moore has acted as a private tutor for a wealth of bass players. “Whatever field you want, I’ll take you there,” he says.
Quotable: “I tell my students, ‘If you can hear it you can sing it, and if you can sing it you can play it, and if you can write it you can teach it.’”

INSTRUMENT: Bass BIRTHPLACE: New Orleans AGE: 57 PRESENT WORK: Deacon John, James Rivers (All-Star 1997), Marva Wright, Dave Bartholomew (All-Star 1999) Wardell Quezergue (All-Star 2002), Sullivan Dabney (All-Star 2009), Wanda Rouzan (All-Star 2003), Wild Magnolias PAST WORK: Sammy Berfect, Carl LeBlanc (All-Star 2000) Phillip Manuel (All-Star 2000), Germaine Bazzle (All-Star 1993), Henry Butler (All-Star 1997), Luther Kent, Davell Crawford (All-Star 1999) RECORDINGS: Deacon John, Sybil Kein, Allen Toussaint, Lionel Hampton, James Andrews (All-Star 2005), Oliver Morgan, Jean Knight, Wardell Quezergue, John Mooney, Humphrey Davis WHERE TO SEE: Sweet Lorraine’s, Coco Room, Jazz Fest, French Quarter Fest.

TRADITIONAL JAZZ

ORANGE KELLIN 
Orange Kellin recalls that New Orleans-style traditional jazz was the “pop music of the day” when he was growing up in Ljungby, Sweden. His main exposure to it was through records and he notes that music programs in local schools concentrated on the revival style. In 1966, during a break his studies at the University of Stockholm, Kellin decided to come to New Orleans just to listen to some jazz. “I never intended to settle here,” he explains. He was offered a recording session and joined the local musicians’ union and that was it. “I didn’t have any good reason to go back.” Soaking up the music, the clarinetist began meeting some of the greats who were playing at the time. By ’69, he started blowing clarinet regularly with trumpeter Thomas Jefferson and then landed a six-day-a-week gig at the Maison Bourbon. That freed up his evenings, he recalls, so he was playing both night and day. The ’70s found him teamed with trumpeters Percy Humphrey (All-Star 1992) and Wallace Davenport (All-Star 1993) with whom he toured both nationally and abroad. Kellin describes his job at the Paddock as his “bread and butter” gig while jumping over to Preservation Hall at the same time. He had the opportunity to play with the noted Jabbo Smith when the trumpeter spent several years in New Orleans. Kellin calls his involvement as musical director and clarinetist with the musical, One Mo’ Time as a life changing experience. Kellin was onboard when the show, which eventually expanded to six companies, went to New York and was there for its command performance for Queen Elizabeth and Prince Charles. He was also in the band behind Louis Armstrong at the trumpeter’s 70th birthday celebration at the Newport Jazz Festival. The clarinetist was back and forth between New Orleans and New York for a while and then settled in the Big Apple where he led his own band, the New Orleans Blue Serenaders. With both of the New York clubs where he gigged regularly closed and concern for his house in New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina, Kellin returned to New Orleans in March 2007.
Quotable: “This too shall pass.”

INSTRUMENT: Clarinet BIRTHPLACE: Sweden AGE: 65 PRESENT WORK: Leader of New Orleans Joymakers, Preservation Hall Jazz Band, Mark Braud (All-Star 2002), Steve Pistorius (All-Star 1995) PAST WORK: Percy Humphrey (All-Star 1992), Wallace Davenport (All-Star 1993), New Orleans Ragtime Orchestra, Father Al Lewis, Kid Thomas, Jim Robinson, New Orleans Blue Serenaders, Louis Armstrong, Dee Dee Pierce, Teddy Wilson RECORDINGS: Jabbo Smith, Dee Dee Pierce, Earl Hines, Wallace Davenport, Kid Thomas, Percy Humphrey WHERE TO SEE: Preservation Hall, Arnaud’s, Creole Queen, French Quarter Festival.
 

 

VERNEL BAGNERIS 
While Vernel Bagneris’ impressive credentials don’t fit neatly into a formulated “box,” he’s without doubt a jazzman – he’s a jazz song and dance man. Deemed “a master of the American vernacular” by the Library of Congress and the winner of numerous theatrical awards, Bagneris first gained recognition as the writer and director of the nationally and internationally acclaimed musical One Mo’ Time. Primarily working as an actor, he considers his appearance playing Papa Du in the show to be his first professional venture as a jazz vocalist. “It was incredible to just keep yourself tuned,” Bagneris says of having to sing in eight shows a week during its New York run. Following the huge success of One Mo’ Time, he wrote and directed the rhythm and blues musical Staggerlee in conjunction with Allen Toussaint. “I always came home and developed a piece and then I’d go up to New York and market it,” he explains. “It was more fun and relaxed to work at home.” He was again back on stage singing and dancing as Papa Du in his 1990 musical Further Mo’. Bagneris didn’t really become involved in the music club scene until ’95 when he opened a show at New York’s Michael’s club dubbed “Me-Morial.” that captured slices of pianist Jelly Roll Morton’s music and life. Bagneris, who evoked Morton’s spirit in song and word, was teamed with pianist Morton Gunnar Larsen. An unexpected hit, the show that was booked for two weeks ran six months. The two returned to the club for a similar Jelly Roll inspired presentation, Hoo-Dude that also ran for six months. Bagneris combined the two shows to produce the award-winning, off-Broadway musical Jelly Roll. “I just stuck with his truth and his words,” says Bagneris of its success. Locally, Bagneris’ Jelly Roll has been seen at spots like Le Chat Noir and Jazz Fest. For the last 15 years, Bagneris has been heard on Public Radio International celebrating New Orleans musicians including Jelly Roll Morton, Bunk Johnson and Danny Barker. The Jim Collum Jazz Band backs Bagneris’ vocals on the “Live from the Landing” broadcasts. He’s also been involved in many movies – Ray, Pennies from Heaven and Down by Law – as an actor, choreographer, vocalist and dancer – and has several more in the can. After 28 years of living in New York, Bagneris returned to New Orleans just four months after Hurricane Katrina in January 2006. “I knew I couldn’t be happy anywhere else.”
Quotable: “My brother said, ‘Always remember for you to go from the Lafitte Housing Project to Broadway, that’s a dream come true.’ That’s pretty much true. It’s just been a wonderful ride.”

INSTRUMENT: Vocals and Dance BIRTHPLACE: New Orleans AGE: 59 PRESENT WORK: Orange Kellin, PRI Radio “Live at the Landing” narrator, performer, Jim Cullum Jazz Band PAST: Morton Gunner Larsen RECORDINGS: Jelly Roll, One Mo’ Time, Orange Kellin WHERE TO SEE: On the big screen.
 

 

SULLIVAN DABNEY 
Sullivan Dabney’s interest in music was sparked by a neighbor who would sit on his porch listening to the radio that played greats like saxophonist Stanley Turrentine and pianist and vocalist Ray Charles. In junior high, he took vocal and instrumental courses and headed the drum section at George Washington Carver High School. Dabney sat behind the drums as a profession for the first time in 1962, playing rhythm and blues with John L. Jones’ band at the Elk’s Hall. When he was still in high school he formed his own group, the Orientals, again playing rhythm and blues. During this time, he also appeared on WBOK radio on the “Stars of Tomorrow” show. It wasn’t long before the drummer was picked up by noted vocalist Tommy Ridgley and began touring. Dabney got into jazz, he says, because he enjoyed having the room to improvise. “It’s more fun because you can stretch out,” he explains. In the late ’60s he’d head to jam sessions at spots like Off Limits and Lloyd’s to dig into modern jazz. He recalls that the first time he played jazz, he took over the drums from Smokey Johnson (All-Star 1994) for a few numbers. In the ’80s he ventured into traditional style of jazz as a member of trumpeter Dr. Frank Minyard’s band and also providing the rhythm behind banjoist and guitarist Danny Barker. It was Barker who also got him into the film industry. He debuted on the big screen in the movie This Gun for Hire, starring Robert Wagner. At his regular gig at Harrah’s Casino, the drummer and vocalist plays a bit of everything. “I’m well-versed,” says Dabney, who also writes a lot of his own material. “That’s always been my forte.” Dabney has entertained at back-of-town nightspots, performed for royalty and spent 10 years playing at the Fairmont Hotel. He has been featured in numerous ads and proudly points out that he was once the Popeyes Chicken King. For the last dozen years, the drummer has also been active in children’s music programs.
Quotable: “Music has always been my inspiration and it has allowed me to travel all over the world – free.”

INSTRUMENT: Drums and Vocals BIRTHPLACE: New Orleans AGE: 64 PRESENT WORK: Leader of Sullivan Dabney’s Muzik Jazz Band PAST WORK: Tommy Ridgley, Ernie K-Doe, Danny Barker (All-Star 1990), Johnny Adams, Richard Payne (All-Star 1992), Jean Knight, Eddie Bo (All-Star 2000), Porgy Jones (All-Star 2004), Dr. Frank Minyard RECORDINGS: As leader, Tommy Ridgley, Porgy Jones, Barbara Shorts, David Richardson WHERE TO SEE: Harrah’s Casino, French Quarter Fest
 

 

DWAYNE PAULIN 
Like all of the Paulin brothers, Dwayne began his music career playing in his father’s, the late Ernest “Doc” Paulin’s, band. Armed with a baritone horn, much like a small sousaphone, he was only 12 when he first hit the streets on Mardi Gras day. He chuckles when he remembers thinking, “This is a mistake.” By the time he reached high school, he felt like he could finally contribute to the band. His father’s advice was: “Stay on the melody.” During high school he played tuba in both the marching and concert bands and was recognized at talent shows and band competitions. He attended Southern University of Baton Rouge and studied under the great Alvin Batiste (All-Star 2001). It was Batiste who encouraged him to try the trombone and it has been his main act ever since. These days, he says he only plays tuba when “all else fails.” While at SUBR, he continued to blow with his father’s band, taking the bus home each weekend to make “pork chop money.” He also picked up some cash working on commercials. Paulin attended Southern University of New Orleans his final year and graduated with Master of Arts degree in music education. Upon graduation, Paulin began teaching at Lawless High School, moved to Eleanor McMain Secondary School and directed the bands at John McDonough and John F. Kennedy high schools. In those positions he arranged pop songs for performance by the marching bands. And, of course, he continued to play in the Doc Paulin Brass Band. “You had no choice,” he exclaims with a laugh. In the late 1990s, the trombonist took a sabbatical from teaching, headed to Europe and led and was featured in bands in Germany and Switzerland. On his return in 2000, he picked up playing with both his father and his brothers’ brass bands as well as working a day job. He was soon back in the classroom at St. Ville Academy first teaching math and directing the music program, and presently working in administration.
Quotable: “Practice makes perfect.”

INSTRUMENT: Trombone BIRTHPLACE: New Orleans AGE: 48 PRESENT WORK: Paulin Brothers Brass Band, Ellis Marsalis Big Band, New Orleans Levee Board Blues Band PAST WORK: Wardell Quezergue (All-Star 2002), Dave Bartholomew (All-Star 1999), John Cleary, Deacon Jones, John Brunious (All-Star 2001), Preservation Hall Jazz Band RECORDINGS: Doc Paulin Brass Band, Paulin Brothers Brass Band, Robbie Robertson, Aaron Neville, Dave Bartholomew, Charles Brown, Wardell Quezergue, Michael White (All-Star 1990), Gatemouth Brown WHERE TO SEE: Preservation Hall, The Blues Club, Jazz Fest, French Quarter Fest.
 

 

JESSE BOYD 
Jesse Boyd could easily have been inducted into the All-Stars as either a modern or traditional player. On upright bass, he plays both with equal finesse and even utilizes the acoustic on rhythm and blues. As the son of a preacher and pianist, Boyd began playing in church – first on piano and then moving to bass at age 8. His father, whom he describes as an excellent pianist, wanted his son to read music so he made sure he took private lessons. Boyd was 12 when he made his first gospel recording. It was when he was a high school student in South Carolina that he realized the relationship between the music he’d been playing and jazz – both, he discovered, had elements of swing and improvisation. Until he landed in New Orleans to attend Loyola University, Boyd and his family moved around a lot. He attended college in “a bunch of places,” always giving it up to perform. He settled in to receive his Bachelor of Arts degree from Loyola University and his Masters in Jazz Performance at the University of New Orleans. He studied with the great New Orleans bassist Bill Huntington (All-Star 1990) to whom he gives huge amounts of credit. It was a reference from Huntington that landed Boyd a teaching job at Loyola, where he heads classes in bass, theory and combo. He also teaches similar classes at Delgado University. One of Boyd’s first gigs in New Orleans was playing in a modern jazz group that included saxophonist Clarence Johnson (All-Star 2003), pianist Peter Cho and drummer Stanton Moore (All-Star 2006). Boyd never performed traditional jazz until he moved here though he did give rock ‘n’ roll a try when he lived in Los Angeles – “that didn’t really work.” He found that he knew many of numbers in the traditional jazz repertoire from his youth, particularly hymns like “I’ll Fly Away.” The much called upon bassist can play it all though his new album, True Stories, is all about modern jazz.
Quotable: “What makes it so special to be a New Orleans musician are the people who you play with. It doesn’t matter what you play, it’s the people.”

INSTRUMENT: Bass BIRTHPLACE: Greenville, North Carolina AGE: 50 PRESENT WORK: Jesse Boyd Trio, Topsy Chapman (All-Star 2006), Leah Chase (All-Star 2009), Charmaine Neville, Ingrid Lucia PAST WORK: Ellis Marsalis (All-Star 1990), Detroit Brooks (All-Star 2006), John Rankin (All-Star 2007), Bob French (All-Star 1990) RECORDINGS: As Leader, Michael Pellera (All-Star 1994), Clarence Johnson (All-Star 2003), Burke Ingraffia WHERE TO SEE: Snug Harbor, Palm Court, Windsor Court, Jazz Fest, French Quarter Fest
 

 

DWAYNE BURNS 
Growing up in the 6th Ward, Dwayne Burns was surrounded by the sounds of music. It inspired him to take up an instrument while attending elementary school at McDonough 31. Another inspirational moment came when he and some friends happened to pass by the Maison Bourbon club and he heard the trumpet great Thomas Jefferson blowing his horn. “It was like I was stuck,” remembers Burns who, at the time, was already playing trumpet. “I told my friends to go on and I stood there all day.” Burns was in the marching and concert bands at Andrew J. Bell Jr. High and St. Augustine High School. During this time he, like most teenage musicians, was in a band playing the music of the era. He recalls doing funk numbers from groups like Earth, Wind & Fire. While at St. Augustine High School, he also teamed up with some classmates to play what he considers some of his first professional gigs, blowing on mainly traditional jazz tunes and standards. The trumpeter values the memory and the opportunity of sitting next to the likes of Emory Thompson (All-Star 1996) and Teddy Riley (All-Star 1999) in Kid Johnson’s Big Band. He studied formally with Roger Dickerson (All-Star 2005) and trumpeter Lawrence Winchester. After high school graduation he was a regular on the brass band scene playing with groups like the Tremé, New Birth and Doc Paulin brass bands. He spent most of the 1990s blowing with the Olympia Brass Band and thus had the opportunity to see a bit of the world. Burns was also a regular at the Arnaud’s popular jazz brunch and did his time at the Famous Door. Presently, he plays four nights a week at the Maison Bourbon and one night at Preservation Hall. “I’m busy,” says Burns, who has never had to take a day job. “Sometimes, maybe I should have but I held out,” he adds, laughing.
Quotable: “Music is my life. I grew up in New Orleans and I heard the best people play it. I’m addicted.”

 

Jazz All-Stars HONOR Roll

contemporary
1990
Bill Huntington, bass
John Vidacovich, drums
Clyde Kerr Jr., trumpet
Alvin “Red” Tyler, saxophone
Steve Masakowski, guitar
Ellis Marsalis, piano

1991
James Singleton, bass
Leroy Jones, trumpet
Freddy Lonzo, trombone
Herlin Riley, drums
David Torkanowsky, piano
Tony Dagradi, saxophone
Theron Lewis, guitar

1992
David Lee, drums
Richard Payne, bass/tuba
Nicholas Payton, trumpet
Ed Frank, piano
Earl Turbinton, saxophone

1993
Mike Pellera, piano
Edward “Kidd” Jordan, saxophone
Kent Jordan, flute
Walter Payton, bass
Brian Blade, drums
Germaine Bazzle, vocals

1994
Harold Battiste, saxophone
Delfeayo Marsalis, trombone
Peter Martin, piano
Michael Ray, trumpet
Chris Severin, bass
Smokey Johnson, drums

1995
Emile Vinette, piano
Al Belletto, saxophone
George French, bass
Shannon Powell, drums
Marlon Jordan, trumpet

1996
Fred Kemp, saxophone
Willie Metcalf, piano
Kerry Brown, drums
Charlie Miller, trumpet
Julius Farmer, bass

1997
James Rivers,
  saxophone/flute/
  bagpipes/harmonica
Henry Butler, piano/vocals
Jason Marsalis, drums
David Pulphus, bass
Terence Blanchard, trumpet

1998
Ed Petersen, tenor and
  soprano/saxophone
Lawrence Sieberth, piano/
  synthesizer
Roland Guerin, bass
Adonis Rose, drums
Rick Trolsen, trombone
Richwell Ison, trumpet

1999
Davell Crawford,
  piano/organ/vocals
Irvin Mayfield, trumpet
Donald Harrison Jr., saxophone
Chris Thomas, bass
Brian Seeger, guitar
Ricky Sebastian, drums

2000
Tim Green, saxophone
Phillip Manuel, vocals
Jeremy Davenport, trumpet/vocals
Carl LeBlanc, guitar/banjo
Thaddeus Richard, bass/
  piano/saxophone
Bill Summers, percussion
Edwin “Eddie Bo” Bocage,  
  piano/vocals

2001
Victor Atkins, piano
Troy Davis, drums
Jesse Davis, alto saxophone
Alvin Batiste, clarinet
Michael Ward, violin
Edwin Livingston, bass

2002
Darrell Lavigne, piano
Herman Jackson, drums
John Mahoney, trombone/piano
Matt Perrine, bass/sousaphone
Eric Traub, saxophone
Wardell Quezergue, band
  leader/arranger/composer

2003
Wilson “Willie Tee” Turbinton,
  piano/vocals
Maurice Brown, trumpet
Clarence Johnson, saxophone
Jaz Sawyer, drums
Neil Caine, bass
Dave Easley, pedal steel guitar

2004
Warren Bell Sr., saxophone
Doug Bickel, piano
Tony Oulabula Bazley, drums
Mark Mullins, trombone
Porgy Jones, trumpet
Richard Moten, bass

2005
Wess “Warmdaddy” Anderson Sr.,
  saxophone
Ed Wise, Bass
Ocie Davis, drums
Andrew Baham, trumpet
Roger Dickerson, piano/composer
John Boutte, vocals

2006
Stanton Moore, drums
Steve Sutor, trombone
Frederick Sanders, piano
Rob Wagner, saxophone
Phil Frazier, sousaphone
Juanita Brooks, vocals

2007
Roger Lewis, saxophone
Betty Shirley, vocals
Richard Knox, piano
Michael Skinkus, percusion
Edward Anderson, trumpet
John Rankin, guitar/vocals

2008
Jessie McBride, piano
Dewey Sampson, bass
Efrem Towns, trumpet
Eliot “Stackman” Callier, saxophone
Stephanie Jordan, vocals
Geoff Clapp, drums

TRADITIONAL
1990
Michael White, clarinet
Teddy Riley, trumpet
Freddy Kohlman, drums
Louis Nelson, trombone
Danny Barker, banjo/guitar
Frank Fields, bass
Jeanette Kimball, piano

1991
Pud Brown, clarinet/saxophone
Wendell Brunious, trumpet
Placide Adams, drums
Walden “Frog” Joseph, trombone
Kirk Joseph, tuba
Narvin Kimball, banjo
Walter Lewis, piano

1992
Jerry Green, bass/tuba
Percy Humphrey, trumpet
John Chaffe,
  banjo/guitar/mandolin
Willie Humphrey, clarinet
Wendell Eugene, trombone
Steve Pistorius, piano
Harold Dejan, saxophone

1993
Clarence Ford,
  clarinet/saxophone
Peter “Chuck” Badie, bass
Wallace Davenport, trumpet
Sadie Goodson, piano
Milford Dolliole, drums
Lucien Barbarin, trombone
Les Muscutt, banjo/guitar

1994
Lionel Ferbos, trumpet
John Robichaux, drums

Charles Burbank,  
  saxophone/clarinet
Frank Federico, banjo/guitar
Worthia G. Thomas, trombone
Jerry Adams, bass

1995
Lloyd Lambert, bass
Don Vappie, banjo/bass/guitar
June Gardner, drums
Gregg Stafford, trumpet
Steve Pistorius, piano
Jack Maheu, clarinet
Tom Ebbert, trombone

1996
Ralph Johnson, saxophone/clarinet
Lawrence Cotton, piano
James Prevost, bass
Lester Caliste, trombone
Gerald French, drums
Emory Thompson (Umar Sharif),
  trumpet
Lars Edegran, banjo/piano/guitar

1997
Alvin Alcorn, trumpet
Tom McDermott, piano
Louis Cottrell, drums
Don Suhor, clarinet/saxophone
Eric Glaser, bass
Steve Blailock, guitar/banjo
Blue Lu Barker, vocals

1998
Bob French, drums
Curtis Mitchell, bass/piano/vocals
Frank Naundorf, trombone
Wes Mix, banjo/guitar/trumpet/
  cornet/trombone/tuba/vocals
Phamous Lambert, piano/vocals
Pete Fountain, clarinet
Kermit Ruffins, trumpet/vocals

1999
Ernie Elly, drums
Manuel Crusto, clarinet/saxophone
Olivia “Lady Charlotte” Cook,
  piano
Clifford Brown, guitar/banjo
Anthony “Tuba Fats” Lacen, tuba
Scotty Hill, trombone
Dave Bartholomew, trumpet/vocals

2000
Tim Laughlin, clarinet
Warren Battiste, guitar/banjo/bass
Maynard Chatters, trombone
James LaRocca, trumpet
Bernard “Bunchy” Johnson, drums
Erving Charles Jr., bass
Rickie Mone, piano/woodwinds

2001
Al Broussard, piano/vocals
Jacques Gauthe, clarinet
John Brunious, trumpet/
  fluegelhorn/piano
Frank Oxley, drums
Craig Klein, trombone/tuba
Mitchell Player, bass
Neil Unterseher, banjo/guitar

2002
Mark Braud, trumpet/
  fluegelhorn/vocals
Corey Henry, trombone/vocals
Mark Brooks, bass/vocals
Evan Christopher, clarinet/
  saxophone
Mari Watanabe, piano
Herman LeBeaux, drums

2003
Joe Torregano, clarinet
Jack Fine, cornet
Wanda Rouzan, vocals
Paul Longstreth, piano
Kerry Lewis, bass
Herb Taylor, drums

2004
Benny Jones, snare drum
Tom Fisher, clarinet/saxophone
Charles Joseph, trombone
Duke Heitger, trumpet
Kevin Morris, bass
Lionel Batiste, bass
  drum/vocals/grand marshal

2005
Ernest “Doc” Watson, saxophone
Thais Clark, vocals
Stanley Joseph, drums
David Boeddinghaus, piano
James Andrews, trumpet
Troy “Trombone Shorty” Andrews,
  trombone/trumpet

2006
Detroit Brooks, banjo/guitar
Gregory Davis, trumpet
Tom Saunders, tuba/bass/
  saxophone
Lawrence Batiste, drums
Doreen Ketchens,clarinet
Topsy Chapman, vocals

2007
Louis Ford, clarinet/saxophone
Jamil Sharif, trumpet
Cayetano “Tanio”Hingle, bass drum
Kerry “Fat Man” Hunter, snare drum
Woody Penouilh, sousaphone
Banu Gibson, vocals

2008
Joe Lastie, drums
Alton “Big Al” Carson, tuba/vocals
Connie Jones, trumpet
Tom Sancton, clarinet
Glen David Andrews, trombone/vocals
John Royen, piano

 

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