This is a painting of my favorite Jazz Guy in New Orleans. We first heard him on our anniversary trip to N.O. right before the hurricane. We heard him at Cafe Beignet in Legends Park on Bourbon St. on Sat. night. We really liked him and then as luck would have it, he was playing at the Jazz Brunch at the Marriot the next morning when we went there. We talked to him and bought a cd, which he signed. I took a few photos of him and his trio. It was just a most memorable anniversary. (I took the photo of the shrimp on the plate with the lemon that I posted a couple of months ago on this trip as well as a shot of a chef making bananas foster.)
Well, three weeks later the hurricane came and I wondered many times about his whereabouts. On our first trip back to New Orleans (I don't remember the exact date, but it was for a Saints game so I guess it was a little more than a year after the hurricane) we were walking down Bourbon street and I heard this great sound and lo and behold! it was Steamboat Willie back in Legends Park! I was just so glad to see him and know that he was okay and back in N.O. playing.
You can go to his website http://www.steamboatwillie.tv/ and click on live gigs...then click on "listen to Bring Me Back" It is a song he wrote while up in the north somewhere not long after the hurricane. If that doesn't get your toe to tappin' I don't know what will. That song is just so special to me. In it there is a wonderful black woman that sings out the names of different areas of New Orleans and at one point she sings out "New Orleans East!" which is where I lived from first to fifth grade. Just go listen, I know you will enjoy it!
So Steamboat Willie holds a special place in my heart and we always make it a point to go and see him when we are in N.O. I have drug many friends and family members there to sing, dance, sweat, dance in the rain and have many great memories.
So, I have always wanted to paint him and now I have. I truly love this painting. It is like the one of my nephew and his sons at the beach.....just like I want to paint.....loose, colorful, bold. Every now and then I hit one just right and this is one of those.
We went to N.O. this past weekend for our anniversary (we have one of those every year and we definitely feel like it is worth celebrating!) We had the most wonderful trip and of course, got to see Steamboat Willie. I took him a print of this painting and he liked it and decided he needed the original. So now we have to make another trip down there to take him his painting.
It's a dirty job, but somebody has to do it.