Other Free Encyclopedias » Online Encyclopedia » Encyclopedia - Featured Articles » Contributed Topics from A-E

Barbarin, Paul (Adolphe)

band orleans chicago onward

Barbarin, Paul (Adolphe), drummer, bandleader, composer, uncle of Danny Barker; b. New Orleans, May 5, 1901; d. there, Feb. 10, 1969. His father, Isidore, was a local bandleader, playing alto horn with the Onward Brass Band, and three of his brothers were musicians, the most famous being drummer Louis (b. 1902). Paul began on clarinet, then worked as a freightlift operator at the Hotel St. Charles in New Orleans. With his earnings, he bought his first set of drums. He soon began gigging with local bands. He left New Orleans for Chicago in 1917, working in the stockyards by day and playing club jobs at night. Through 1945, Barbarin spent his professional life alternating between living and working in either Chicago or N.Y. and then returning for a while to his hometown of New Orleans. Some of the highlights of his performing career included a position with King Oliver’s band in Chicago from February 1925-summer of 1927; and work with Luis Russell’s N.Y.-based band from 1928-January 1932 and again from 1935-late 1938. In between, he gigged with other groups and worked leading various bands in his hometown. He returned to New Orleans in late 1944 pretty much for good, and formed his own band (originally called The Invaders). Besides a brief stint in 1953 with Art Hodes at Jazz Ltd., in Chicago, Barbarin led his own highly successful small band, playing long residencies in New Orleans, but also fulfilling engagements in N.Y., Los Angeles, Toronto, etc. In 1960 he formed the Onward Brass Band, named after the original Onward, which his father had led. In the last decade of his life he was associated with many of the musicians who worked at Preservation Hall, including Sweet Emma Barrett, with whom he recorded. He died while leading the Onward Brass Band in a parade. He was also known for several of his musical compositions, particularly “Bourbon Street Parade” and “The Second Line.”

Barbe, Helmut [next]

User Comments

Your email address will be altered so spam harvesting bots can't read it easily.
Hide my email completely instead?

Cancel or