Dr. Michael White

Dr__Michael_White_2Clarinetist and jazz historian Michael White began his jazz musical career as a teenager playing for Doc Paulin’s Brass Band in New Orleans. He was a member of an incarnation of the Fairview Baptist Church Marching Band, established by banjoist Danny Barker. He was discovered by Kid Sheik Colar, who heard him onstage performing in Jackson Square in the French Quarter. He began working with the musician regularly following the encounter. A staunch jazz traditionalist, White can be heard on the 1989 album The Majesty of the Blues by Wynton Marsalis. Wynton also appears on White’s 1990 album titled Crescent City Serenade, along with musicians Wendell Brunious and Walter Payton.

White has led several bands in the New Orleans area, and has accompanied various artists on other recording projects. Since 1979 he has played in the Young Tuxedo Brass Band, founded by clarinetist John Casimir sometime in the 1940s. During the 1980s he also led a band called The New Orleans Hot Seven. Performing “A Tribute to Jelly Roll Morton” in concert with them at the Lincoln Center in New York City in 1989 led to a favorable review by Jon Pareles in the New York Times shortly after. On May 25, 2004, a selection from White’s album Dancing in the Sky (“Algiers Hoodoo Woman”) was broadcast on NPR’s All Songs Considered. The Dancing in the Sky album is mostly original compositions by White.