The New Birth Brass Band

Genres: Jazz
Decades: 1990s 2000s


A New Orleans, Louisiana, USA-based sextet, the New Birth Brass Band has done much to revive the city’s marching brass band jazz tradition. Led by trumpeter and lead vocalist James Andrews, the group does not, however, intend simply to imitate that tradition. ‘The old cats used to play a lot of sacred dirges and church hymns and traditional standards, and we just got a new spin with our new music and a new beat’, Andrews told Billboard magazine at the time of the release of their debut album. The rest of the original line-up was Derrick Shezbie (trumpet), Kerwin James (USA, d. 5 October 2007, Houston, Texas, USA; tuba), Kerry Hunter (snare drum), Cayetano Hingle (bass drums) and Reginald Steward (trombone). It is Andrews’ trumpet-playing that has been the main focus of attention in jazz circles - leading to him being saddled with a ‘Satchmo of the Ghetto’ moniker. By the time he assembled the New Birth Brass Band, Andrews was already a...

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