FOLSOM — They are a beloved American institution. Just off their 50th anniversary, Preservation Hall Jazz Band — whose high-energy shows are dedicated to perpetuating traditional New Orleans jazz — celebrated their fifth decade in Carnegie Hall on Jan. 7.
On Feb. 3 the band comes to Three Stages to celebrate the one-year anniversary of the $50 million facility on the Folsom Lake College campus.
“It was a who’s who at Carnegie Hall last Saturday, helping Preservation Hall Jazz Band celebrate 50 years of Dixieland jazz: the Blind Boys of Alabama, Alan Toussaint, the Del McCoury Band, My Morning Jacket, Steve Earle, Trombone Shorty, Merrill Garbus of Tune-Yards, and Yasiin Bey (formerly Mos Def) — all were on hand to pay their respects,” said Executive Director Dave Pier. “Preservation Hall has earned it, every bit, and we’re thrilled to have them at Three Stages for our first anniversary.”
Preservation Hall Jazz Band will perform in Three Stages at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 3. Tickets are $25 to $39 with premium tickets available for $49 and student tickets available for $12 (with ID). Tickets are available online at threestages.net or from Three Stages ticket office at (916) 608-6888 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday through Saturday, and two hours before show time. Three Stages is located on the west side of Folsom Lake College campus in Folsom, facing East Bidwell Street.
The Preservation Hall Jazz Band derives its name from Preservation Hall, the venerable music venue located in the heart of New Orleans’ French Quarter, founded in 1961 by Allan and Sandra Jaffe. The band has traveled worldwide spreading their mission to nurture and perpetuate the art form of New Orleans Jazz. Whether performing at Carnegie Hall or Lincoln Center, for British royalty or the King of Thailand, this music embodies a joyful, timeless spirit.
Under the auspices of current director, Ben Jaffe, the son of founders Allan and Sandra, Preservation Hall continues with a deep reverence and consciousness of its greatest attributes in the modern day as a venue, band, and record label.
The building that houses Preservation Hall has housed many businesses over the years including a tavern during the war of 1812, a photo studio and an art gallery. It was during the years of the art gallery that then owner, Larry Borenstein, began holding informal jam sessions for his close friends. Out of these sessions grew the concept of Preservation Hall. The intimate venue, with a weathered exterior that has been untouched over its history, is a living embodiment of its original vision. To this day, Preservation Hall has no drinks, air conditioning or other typical accoutrements strictly welcoming people of all ages interested in having one of the last pure music experiences left on the earth.
The PHJB began touring in 1963 and for many years there were several bands successfully touring under the name Preservation Hall. Many of the band’s charter members performed with the pioneers who invented jazz in the early twentieth century including Buddy Bolden, Jelly Roll Morton, Louis Armstrong and Bunk Johnson. Band leaders over the band’s history include the brothers Willie and Percy Humphrey, husband and wife Billie and De De Pierce, famed pianist Sweet Emma Barrett, and in the modern day Wendell and John Brunious. These founding artists and dozens of others passed on the lessons of their music to a younger generation who now follow in their footsteps like the current lineup.
Ben Jaffe/creative director & tuba: As son of co-founders Allan and Sandra Jaffe, Ben has lived his whole life with the rhythm of the French Quarter pulsing through his veins.
Mark Braud/trumpet and vocals: As nephew to two former PHJB leaders, Wendell and John Brunious, Jr., Mark is proud to further his family’s musical legacy in the company of so many historic players.
Charlie Gabriel/clarinet and vocals: Great-grandson of New Orleans bass player Narcesse Gabriel, grandson of New Orleans cornet player Martin Joseph, and son of New Orleans drummer and clarinetist Martin Manuel Gabriel, Charlie is truly a living legend.
Clint Maedgen/saxophone and vocals: After studying with Alvin Batiste at Southern University, Clint has cemented his reputation as an artist, through an ongoing series of eclectic and experimental musical ensembles.
Joe Lastie Jr./drums: Joe studied jazz with Willie Metcalf at the Dryades Street YMCA with classmates Wynton and Branford Marsalis. Invited to substitute on drums in 1989, he’s been a PHJB regular ever since.
Freddie Lonzo/trombone and vocals: Freddie was exposed to the music of the streets at a very young age; he’s a true master of every style of New Orleans music, from marching brass to modern jazz.
Rickie Monie/piano: Born and raised in New Orleans’ Ninth Ward to jazz loving church musicians, Rickie got his first call from Preservation Hall in 1982 to substitute for the legendary resident pianist Sweet Emma Barret.