Placide Adams (died 03/29/2003; New Orleans, LA; age 73)
Upright bassist & drummer led the Onward Brass Band and worked with many local jazz legends over the years; he also backed many R&B greats (Clyde McPhatter, Ruth Brown) in the 1950's; his mother, Dolly (Douroux) Adams, was a musician who led a family band; his uncle was Manuel "Fess" Manetta, a noted musician and music teacher; brothers Justin (1923-1991) and Jerry were also musicians.
Will Ainsworth (died 09/03/2003; Denver, CO; age 48)
Bass player worked with Zachary Richard, Coco Robicheaux, Paula & the Pontiacs, Charmaine Neville, Kenny Wayne Shepherd, and many others.
Alvin Alcorn (died 07/10/2003; New Orleans, LA; age 90)
Noted New Orleans trad jazz trumpeter and bandleader played with Armand Piron, Paul Barbarin, Sidney Desvigne, Kid Ory, Albert "Papa" French, George Lewis, and many others; see Alvin Alcorn obit from The Independent (UK).
Carl Alexius (died 04/18/2003; Ann Arbor, MI; age 74)
New Orleans-born musician, educator and composer taught at the University of Michigan from 1967-84; he led his own jazz trio in the Ann Arbor area for many years; more.
Michael "Money Mike" Armstrong (died 07/07/2003; New Orleans, LA; age 23)
Local MC was a fixture on the New Orleans underground hip-hop scene.
(William) Bill Boskent (died 08/04/2003; Baltimore, MD; age 77)
Songwriter, producer, arranger and label owner (Kent Records) from Belle Chasse, LA had long associations with Lloyd Price and Fats Domino among others; he co-wrote Price's 1957 "Just Because" (#3 on R&B chart), and produced the #1 hit "Stagger Lee"; read more.
Huey Bourgeois (died 07/04/2003; New Orleans, LA)
Leader of the Huey Bourgeois Trio performed at Seaport Cafe, Arnaud's Restaurant, and other local venues.
Clarence "Junie Boy" / "Mule" Brown (died 04/09/2003; New Orleans, LA; age 62)
New Orleans drummer kept the beat for Fats Domino for over 30 years; Brown also worked with The Hawketts, Willie Tee, and George French.
Buzz Busby (died 01/05/2003; Catonsville, MD; age 69)
Eros, LA native (born Bernarr Graham Busbice) was a noted bluegrass mandolinist, songwriter and bandleader (the Bayou Boys) in the Washington, DC area for many years; see a profile from Washington City Paper.
Dorothy "Miss Dorothy" Carter (died 06/07/2003; New Orleans, LA; age 68)
Troubadour performed contemporary, folk, traditional and mediaeval music on a wide variety of instruments; she was a co-founder of the group Mediaeval Baebes.
Erving Charles Jr. (died 02/26/2003; New Orleans, LA; age 61)
Local bass guitar great backed Fats Domino for 20 years; Charles also worked with Dave Bartholomew, Snooks Eaglin, Irma Thomas, Marva Wright, Clarence "Frogman" Henry, Juanita Brooks, and a host of others; photo.
James "Phat Nasty" Durant (died 09/17/2003; New Orleans, LA; age 31)
Respected sax player with the ReBirth Brass Band passed away unexpectedly at home shortly after performing with the band at the Maple Leaf; James also worked with several other brass outfits including the Young Olympia, Lil Stooges, and the Hot 8.
(Eugene Thomas) Gene Ferrant (died 04/16/2003; Ponchatoula, LA; age 79)
Ponchatoula native performed with the Lizard Creek Ramblers.
Carl Fontana (died 10/09/2003; Las Vegas, NV; age 75)
Noted trombonist from Monroe, LA worked with Woody Herman, Stan Kenton, Kai Winding, Lionel Hampton, and many others; Fontana was based in Las Vegas since 1957; see Carl Fontana tribute page; Carl Fontana obit.
Willie Parker Guidry Jr. (died 03/11/2003; Lake Charles, LA; age 75)
AKA "The Legendary Bill Parker"; musician and bandleader (Bill Parker's Fabulous Showboat Band) also owned Optune Records; see Goldband Blues collections; more.
Robert Hall (died 03/08/2003; New Orleans, LA; age 104)
Clarinet and sax player was a member of the legendary Hall family from Reserve, LA (his father Edward Hall and brothers Edmond, Herb and Clarence were all jazz musicians); he worked with Hippolyte Charles in the early 1920's, and later with Papa Celestin's Original Tuxedo Jazz Orchestra (who he recorded with in 1927).
John Hart (died 12/26/2003; Opelousas, LA; age 71)
Noted saxophonist and Shreveport, LA native worked with Lil' Bob and the Lollipops, Clifton Chenier, Rockin' Dopsie, and many others; see photos.
(Albert Leo) Al Hobson (died 05/13/2003; Hodge, LA; age 79)
Musician and bandleader (Al Hobson and the Skyliners) was a regular on the Ark-La-Tex circuit from the 1950's - 1990's.
Moses Hogan (died 02/11/2003; Harvey, LA; age 45)
Noted pianist, conductor and arranger of spirituals attended NOCCA and the Juilliard School of Music.
Donald "Moose" Jamison (died 12/02/2003; New Orleans, LA; age 76)
Community activist, musician, jazz historian, and longtime host of the New Orleans Music Show on WWOZ-FM also served on the board of the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Foundation; see Remembering Moose Jamison from Gambit Weekly.
Earl King (died 04/17/2003; New Orleans, LA; age 69)
Legendary New Orleans R&B singer, songwriter and musician; King's writing credits included "Those Lonely, Lonely Nights" (a Top 10 hit in 1955), "Come On (Let the Good Times Roll)" which was covered by Jimi Hendrix and Stevie Ray Vaughan, "Do-Re-Mi" (a 1962 hit for Lee Dorsey), "Trick Bag", and the Mardi Gras classic "Big Chief"; fittingly, King's funeral was held at Gallier Hall; rock giants Paul McCartney and Eric Clapton were among those sending their condolences; see Earl King profile from Cascade Blues.
(Joseph S.) Joe Kluchin (died 07/01/2003; New Orleans, LA; age 76)
Musician founded and led Joe Kluchin and his Southerners, a popular dance band in New Orleans in the late 1940's and 50's.
Isaac "Big Ike" Martin (died 08/31/2003; New Orleans, LA; age 54)
Noted Lake Charles, LA blues belter led the Lake City Band, who opened for Aretha Franklin, Gladys Knight, Bobby Blue Bland and other national acts; read more.
Robert McColley (died 12/07/2003; New Orleans, LA; age 35)
Local musician was a co-founder of hard core/techno group GIMP.
Gus McField Jr. (died 07/14/2003; New Orleans, LA; age 50)
Choir director and gospel singer worked with the Youth Inspirational Choir, the Gospel Soul Children and the New Zion Trio.
Norman Meyer (died 05/18/2003; New Orleans, LA; age 88)
New Orleans jazz musician (clarinet, saxophone, flute) played with the Leon Kelner Orchestra and many others over the years; recordings include The Gentle Jazz, Original Camellia Jazz Band, and others.
Chuck Mitchell (died 01/20/2003; Baton Rouge, LA; age 61)
R&B vocalist (born Mitchell Johnus Geran) was a fixture on the Baton Rouge blues scene for many years; he worked with Robert Milburn, Slim Harpo, and the Neal family, among others; recordings include "Her Precious Love" and "When Something Is Wrong With My Baby" (recorded with The Herculoids); he was inducted into the Louisiana Blues Hall of Fame in 2001.
(Samuel L.) Sam Mooney (died 01/14/2003; New Orleans, LA; age 84)
Jazz musician had a long association with Andrew Hall's Society Jazz Band; recorded with Jamie Wight, Reg Koeller, and others.
Bob O'Rourke (died 09/30/2003; Chalmette, LA; age 68)
Dixieland trombonist worked with the Leon Kelner and Dick Stabile Orchestras at The Fairmont Hotel; also with Dukes of Dixieland, Al Hirt, Pete Fountain, and others.
Gene Pelas (died 08/06/2003; Covington, LA; age 56)
Jazz guitarist was a native of New Orleans.
Clinton "Santy" Runyon (died 04/04/2003; Lafayette, LA; age 95)
Jazz musician, instructor, and mouthpiece maker operated Runyon Products from it's Opelousas, LA base since 1970; see Santy Runyon profile.
Spencer "Funk" "Spence" Smith Jr. (murdered 12/11/2003; New Orleans, LA; age 28)
Local recording artist was gunned down on St. Bernard Avenue; suspect charged with the murder is also implicated in the killing of rapper Soulja Slim.
Soulja Slim (murdered 11/26/2003; New Orleans, LA; age 25)
Nationally known rapper (born James Tapp) was killed in front of his mother's home in Gentilly; Slim cut 2 albums for No Limit Records and had 2 later solo CD's; he appeared on 1995's "Down South Hustlers" compilation (as Magnolia Slim), and also guested on CD's by C-Murder, Master P, Snoop Dogg, and ReBirth Brass Band; a suspect in the case was arrested in late December.
David "Chubby" Stevens (died 07/02/2003; New Orleans, LA; age 75)
Jazz musician and Philadelphia native performed with the Preservation Hall Band; prior work included stints with the Dukes of Dixieland, Bob French's Original Tuxedo Jazz Band, and the Duke Ellington Band.
(Donald John) Don Suhor (died 01/27/2003; New Orleans, LA; age 70)
New Orleans jazz musician (clarinet & alto sax) lost a battle with cancer after a 55 year career on the local scene; Suhor played with Al Hirt, Lionel Hampton, Santo Pecora, George French, and many others; he recorded with Don Vappie, Wendell Brunious, Bobby Charles, Topsy Chapman, Tuxedo Jazz Band, and others.
Jeane Tassin (died 05/24/2003; New Orleans, LA; age 59)
Jazz drummer performed with the Herb Tassin Orchestra in New Orleans for 30+ years.
Louis Torregano (died 09/17/2003; New Orleans, LA; age 55)
Gospel musician worked with the Sensational Travelers, the Sunshine Connection, The Zion Harmonizers, and Jo "Cool" Davis; he was the brother of New Orleans musicians Michael and Joe Torregano.
Roy "Big Daddy" Wagener (died 09/16/2003; New Orleans, LA; age 62)
Musician (sax & clarinet), songwriter and lifelong New Orleans resident worked with Pete Fountain and Al Hirt, among others; wrote the local classic, "We Will All Remember (Graduation Day)".
Marlon "Big Moe" Washington (murdered 02/07/2003; New Orleans, LA; age 29)
Local rapper with with Calliope Entertainment.
Anthony Wimberly (murdered 03/07/2003; New Orleans, LA; age 29)
Vocalist and musician with the Wimberley Family Gospel Singers.
Allie "Nonc Allie" Young (died 04/21/2003; Opelousas, LA; age 90)
Noted accordion player from Basile, LA worked with the Frugé Family Band, the Balfa Brothers, D.L. Menard, and his own Basile Cajun Band; see Nonc Allie profile.
Second-line parade organizer was also on the board of directors of the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Foundation.
Trad jazz advocate served as president of the New Orleans Jazz Club for 16 years.
Founder of Sun Records, producer, and rock & roll pioneer launched the careers of Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Carl Perkins, Jerry Lee Lewis, B.B. King, and many others.
Founder and longtime owner of Fritzel's European Jazz Club in the French Quarter.
New Orleans native, attorney and photographer was a co-founder of Tipitina's music club.