The Musicians

Baby Boyz Brass Band
Formed in 2007, the Baby Boyz Brass Band, led by trumpeter Glenn Hall, play traditional New Orleans brass band music in second lines, jazz funerals, and at events around the city of New Orleans. Standouts among the upcoming generation of players, the Baby Boyz were all born and raised in New Orleans. These young men, many of whom began playing as young children, were inspired the unique music in their community and strive to keep alive the legacy of New Orleans music.

Chuck Perkins
Chuck Perkins is a New Orleans born spoken word poet, orator, narrator, and activist who infuses the rhythms and vernacular from the Crescent City into his musical spoken word pieces. The New Orleans Times-Picayune says that he “recites poetry like a prize fighter…always going for a knock out.” He has performed internationally at London’s prestigious South Bank Centre with Amiri Baraka, as well as in Paris, Toulouse, Manchester, Liverpool, Cambridge, and Amsterdam.

Ed Petersen
Edward Petersen hails from the Chicago area and got his start playing with is father and has taught at the University of New Orleans for 16 years. Ed is the Associate Chair of Music and Coordinator of Jazz Studies and he teaches Applied Saxophone and Jazz Improvisation. He has played with J.J. Johnson, Johnny Griffin, Clifford Jordan, Wilbur Campbell, Jay McShann, Lionel Hampton, Henry Butler, Herlin Riley, Benny Goodman, Ella Fitzgerald, Ira Sullivan, Eddie Harris, David Liebman, Ellis Marsalis, Dr, John, Ernie Watts and many others.

Jason Marsalis
Jason has not only inherited the virtuoso and composition skills associated with the Marsalis family, but has also developed a distinctive, polyrhythmic drumming style. His first professional gig was with his father at the age of twelve, he studied classical percussion at Loyola University in New Orleans, and worked as a sideman with straight-ahead combos, funk fusion bands, a Brazilian percussion ensemble (Casa Samba), and even a Celtic group. He introduced percussionist Bill Summers to trumpeter Irvin Mayfield and together they co-founded the wildly successful Los Hombres Calientes. Then, at the height of that band’s popularity, Jason left to join up with acclaimed pianist Marcus Roberts.

Jason also continues to work as a sideman with Marcus Roberts, Ellis and Delfeayo Marsalis, Shannon Powell, John Ellis, and Dr. Michael White and, along with his father and brothers, is the recipient of the 2011 NEA Jazz Masters Award.

Lucien Barbarin
For five generations the Barbarin family has contributed immeasurably to the music of New Orleans and Lucien is no exception. He made his debut at age six, playing drums in the Onward Brass Band, with his great-uncle Paul Barbarin. By age 15, he was playing with his 2nd cousin Danny Barker as a founding member of the now famous Fairview Baptist Christian Church Band.

Lucien has worked or recorded with jazz masters Harry Connick Jr., Diane Reeves, Doc Cheatham, Nicholas Payton, Leroy Jones, Jay McShann, Dr. Michael White, Lionel Hampton, Steve Turre, Theodore Riles, Don Vappie, Perry and Willie Humphrey, and Kermit Ruffins. Mr. Barbarin has played nearly every major jazz festival across the world, including the Jazz and Heritage Festival, North Sea, Montreux, Munich, Nice, and Capitol Radio in London.

Roland Guerin
Roland studied at Southern University in Baton Rouge, where he joined legendary jazz educator Alvin Batiste’s Band, the Jazztronauts. He later toured the world as a member of jazz guitarist Mark Whitfield’s Band. He had the opportunity to perform with such greats as George Benson, Jimmy Scott, Frank Morgan, Vernel Fournier, and Gerry Mulligan, Marcus Roberts, and Allen Toussaint.

When he is not performing with his band, Roland Guerin tours and performs with Allen Toussaint and also enjoys occasional performances with the Brian Blade Fellowship Band. In addition, he is very active on the New Orleans music scene, where he performs in all genres with such artists as Herlin Riley, Dr. Michael White, Germaine Bazzle, Shannon Powell, Leah Chase, and Ellis Marsalis.

Shannon Powell
Born in the historic Tremé neighborhood in New Orleans, Louisiana. He holds the moniker, “The King of Treme” and has played Trio gigs with Ellis Marsalis, Tommy Ridgely, Johnny Adams, Kermit Ruffins, and many more. Powell spent six years touring and recording with Harry Connick Jr. Together they released two Platinum albums “When Harry Met Sally” and “We Are In Love”.

It was in the Tremé neighborhood that Powell first met the Legendary Danny Barker, a veteran of Cab Calloway’s Orchestra who had returned home to New Orleans in the mid 1960′s and taught traditional jazz to neighborhood youths. While Shannon was still in elementary school, Barker chose him for the legendary Fairview Baptist Brass Band. Powell became a member of Barker’s Jazzhounds and had his first paying gig at Jazz Fest at the age of 14.

Powell who still resides in Treme leads his own band The Shannon Powell Trio featuring Jason Marsalis on vibraphone and Roland Guerin on bass.

Steve Masakowski
Long regarded as one of the top Jazz artists from New Orleans, Steve has played guitar with most of the city’s greatest musicians including Alvin “Red” Tyler, Ellis Marsalis, Earl Turbinton, and James Black. He has also performed with Grammy Award winning artists Bobby McFerrin, Nicholas Payton, and Dianne Reeves at major festivals around the world.

Steve Masakowski is considered one of the most awe-inspiring guitarists and composers in contemporary music. He plays unique seven-string guitars of his own design that are hand-made by New Orleans luthier Sal Giardina.

He has been an active member of, and composer for the award winning New Orleans Jazz group Astral Project. He has twice been voted “Best Guitarist”, and won “Best Contemporary Jazz Group” three times by Gambit and Offbeat magazines in their annual reader’s polls.

Topsy Chapman
Topsy grew up in Kentwood, Louisiana and after high school moved to New Orleans where she founded, composed and arranged original material for the gospel group, The Chapmans.

Topsy Chapman gained national and international recognition constructing the vocal harmony arrangements as one of the original cast members of the of Broadway hit “One Mo’ Time”. The show played New York’s Village Gate, London’s West End and toured most of Europe and the cast album was nominated for a Grammy.

She recently toured Japan with her daughters, the Chapman Singers, under the name Solid Harmony.

Treme Brass Band
The traditional New Orleans marching brass band founded over 15 years ago by snare drummer Benny Jones, Sr., a brass band veteran and son of noted musician Chester Jones. Benny Jones Sr. was a drummer with the Olympia Brass Band and a leader of the Dirty Dozen and Chosen Few Brass Bands. Although they are known internationally through their recordings and tours, the Treme Brass Band is still firmly rooted in the New Orleans street band tradition. Many veterans of Treme have gone on to found other bands, including the Rebirth, New Birth, and Little Rascal Bands.

The band, which plays traditional New Orleans brass band music, features a shifting lineup that has included trumpeters Kermit Ruffins, James Andrews and Kenny Terry, tenor saxophonists Elliot Callier and Frederick Sheppard, trombonist Corey Henry, and sousaphonist Kirk Joseph. “Uncle” Lionel Batiste appears consistently on the bass drum.