Armand St. Martin Set Performs at James Booker Documentary Fundraiser in New Orleans Tonight
ARMAND ST. MARTIN, the popular New Orleans-styled piano player who follows in the legendary piano steps of Louisiana greats JAMES BOOKER, PROFESSOR LONGHAIR, HUEY "PIANO" SMITH, TUTS WASHINGTON, JERRY LEE LEWIS, MICKEY GILLEY, JELLY ROLL MORTON, DR. JOHN, AND ALLEN TOUSSAINT, performs tonight, April 29, 2014 at Southport Hall for a fundraising night of live piano-based music performances and film screenings, geared to help a new music film get off the ground about James Booker titled Bayou Maharajah: The Tragic Genius of James Booker by film director, Lily Keber.
This special event, designed to help raise funds for music licensing fees for Keber's film, is produced by local powerhouse Jimmy Anselmo, the longtime club owner of uptown's Jimmy's Club, and offers a screening of Bayou Maharajah, as well as a sneak preview of Anselmo's own teaser film Trailer featuring his upcoming documentary about his career in New Orleans' unique music scene.
A VIP party opens the special event evening at 5 pm - 6 pm with live performances before and after the film screenings.
Booker was a regular staple at Anselmo's famous music hotspot, making it a given that Anselmo would produce this Booker film benefit.
St. Martin remembers "seeing Booker in concert many times and being influenced and impressed by Booker's piano style." St. Martin adds, "We were in the same music circles and I was inspired to incorporate Booker's style into my original music, along with the other great New Orleans' piano influences throughout my career. I can't think of any show I'd rather be playing during Jazz Fest this year than this fundraiser created to further publicize Booker's amazing talent. When Jimmy invited me to perform, I didn't hesitate to say yes. A hands-on club owner, Jimmy has successfully promoted musicians for decades here in New Orleans and I've seen him consistently give 100% to everything he produces."
Born James Carroll Booker, James Booker accelerated his life and death, succumbing at age 43 in 1983. Kebler's film exposes the genius and insanity of this complex music madman through her own research, and through rediscovered Booker footage from places other than New Orleans. She gathered up personal stories of those who admired Booker's music (like Allen Toussaint and Irma Thomas), of those who knew him well, of those who loved his music as fans, and of those scholars and other fellow musicians who, with fine tooth combs, studied Booker's musical prowess.