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Tuesday Artist Spotlight: Rebirth Brass Band

If you were to ask a resident of New Orleans which band is the most infamously indigenous group from the Big Easy, I guarantee you 6 times out of 10 the answer would be Rebirth Brass Band. Founded over 30 years ago in 1983, Rebirth is an 8-piece instrumental outfit that’s both upheld and redefined what it means to be a band from New Orleans. Rebirth has had a rotating cast of world-class musicians since its inception, and is currently comprised of Phil Frazier (tuba), Keith Frazier (bass drum), Derrick Tabb (snare drum), Chadrick Honore (trumpet), Glenn Hall (trumpet), Gregory Veals (trombone), Stafford Agee (trombone), and Vincent Broussard (saxaphone).

In addition to building and solidifying a sterling reputation in New Orleans, Rebirth Brass Band has also earned its fair share of international and critical success. In 2012, for example, Rebirth won the Grammy Award for Best Regional Roots Music Album during the inaugural year of the Grammy category. To celebrate this well-deserved accolade, the band threw down a storied performance for Grammy attendees and participants at the Pre-Telecast ceremony at the Staples Center.

In 1983, Phil and Keith formed Rebirth Brass Band with the infamous trumpeter Kermit Ruffins and other classmates / marching band members at Joseph S. Clark Senior High in the historic Treme neighborhood of New Orleans. The band recorded its first album in 1984 inside a local Treme neighborhood bar and distributed their debut through Arhoolie Records. Since that release, Rebirth Brass Band has put out a remarkable 15 studio albums as well as a DVD in 2007 called Never a Dull Moment: 20 Years of… In addition to hit records, Rebirth has made several appearances on popular television shows and movies. The band was featured on several episodes of the popular HBO series, Treme, including an authentic second line in show’s pilot episode. One of the show’s main characters Antoine Batiste, played by native New Orleanian Wendell Pierce, is loosely based on the real-life personas of former Rebirth Brass Band member Kermit Ruffins and Rebirth trombonist Stafford Agee. In addition to Treme, the band appears in the opening scene of CBS’s NCIS: New Orleans, Season 1, Episode 2 (2014) – “Carrier.”

In short, Rebirth has brought traditional New Orleans music to the national stage through outstanding records and frequent appearances in internationally recognized TV shows and movies. On Thursday, July 13th, Rebirth is bringing its signature brand of New Orleans brass music from the Big Easy to the Big Apple with an intimate performance at the Cutting Room in New York City. Tickets for the show are flying but can still be purchased at this link. VIP reserved seating options are also available.

Rebirth Brass Band