Preservation Hall Jazz Band

The Preservation Hall Jazz Band is a highly respected institution within the world of traditional jazz and is one of the best loved and most enduring ensembles ever created to perform Dixieland music. It all began when a Pennsylvania tuba player by the name of Alan Jaffe wandered into the Preservation Hall in the New Orleans French Quarter whilst on honeymoon with his wife. After forging a friendship with the owner the Jaffes were persuaded to stay and manage the hall (which at the time was an art gallery hosting occasional jazz gigs) and a jazz institution was born. The Jaffes founded a trad jazz band and recruited as many of the old time players as they could from the rich seam of jazz talent based in New Orleans. Names such as Sweet Emma Barrett, Kid Thomas Valentine and George Lewis were drafted in and the band's reputation quickly grew. The band was soon embarking on national tours and became an established act on the concert circuit. Sadly in 1987, founder and visionary Alan Jaffe died from cancer but was replaced by his son Ben who continues to perform with the band today playing double bass, tuba and acting as artistic director. The original Preservation Hall fell victim to Hurricane Katrina in 2005 but the band has continued its tradition of touring and keeping the spirit of Dixieland alive.

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