Chesney and I just returned from meeting with the extraordinary jazz trumpeter Irvin Mayfield in New Orleans. Irvin is composing the background music for our upcoming GREAT MUSEUMS special “New Orleans: A Living Museum of Music.” He and members of the New Orleans Jazz Orchestra (NOJO) will perform the material in a live recording session later this month.
We reviewed the script and a rough draft of the documentary with Irvin and his team. Seems that everyone is pumped about the music for GREAT MUEUMS’ New Orleans project and the creative juices are flowing. It’s always challenging to do great creative work under deadline pressure. On the other hand, sometimes that’s when an artist is at his best! The NOJO musicians have a passion for their work, a commitment to excellence and a boatload of talent. I can’t wait to hear the tracks for the show.
We met at the Royal Sonesta Hotel, on Bourbon St. in the French Quarter where Irvin recently opened a great jazz club named “Irvin Mayfield’s Jazz Playhouse. Irvin and the New Orleans Jazz Orchestra play every Wednesday night at the club. On the other nights of the week, various jazz artists, including Jason Marsalis, Kermit Ruffins, Leon “Kid Chocolate” Brown, vocalist Johnaye Kendrick, and various local brass bands, keep the Playhouse jumping. I think it’s one of the most ambitious Jazz performance venues in the French Quarter in years.
Irvin just won a Grammy for Best Jazz Album of the Year. Naturally, everybody is excited and proud about that. I predict it’s the first of many Grammys for Irvin and NOJO.
- Marc Doyle, Executive Producer, GREAT MUSEUMS