The New Birth Brass Band of New Orleans, LA, has revived the spirit of the acclaimed Olympia Brass Band, while merging diverse themes such as hip-hop, funk and Latin music in their unique blend of contemporary New Orleans jazz. The members of New Birth were all tutored by the musicians of Olympia Brass Band and were part of many Olympia performances. Over the years, members individually and collectively have been at the forefront of the brass band renewal, taking the traditions into exciting directions with complete grounding in and respect for the generations that came before. While the group has undergone numerous lineup changes since its inception, the current core members of New Birth are Cayetano “Tanio” Hingle (bass drum), Kerry “Fatman” Hunter (snare drum), Jeffrey Hills (sousaphone) and William Smith (trumpet).
New Birth Brass Band has a list of original songs created for this exciting recording project. The new tunes will pay tribute to our teachers, the great men of Olympia Brass Band. It is our intent to record four or five tunes that were part of our experience with Olympia, however, lending NewBirth style and arranging to each tune.
“This groove has the ability to sway a street… terrific punch answered by a wall of sound,” is what Offbeat Magazine said of New Birth’s last album, 2004‘s Family Tree. Produced by George Porter, Jr. of the Meters, the disc showcased the true extended family of the band’s roots and branches, with Troy “Trombone Shorty” Andrews, Glen David Andrews, Rebirth Brass Band’s Glen Andrews, Little Rascals Brass Band’s Corey Henry part of the krewe.
That followed the 1997 debut D-Boy produced by New Orleans legend Allen Toussaint and released by his NYNO Records label. The album’s title was a dedication to Darnell Andrews, who was murdered at just age 17. He was the brother of trumpeter James Andrews, who at the time was a core member of New Birth.
Both albums also stand now as tributes to tuba player Kerwin James, who passed away following a stroke in 2007. A photo of James walking out of devastated New Orleans following the 2005 flood became an iconic image of the power of the city’s music and culture. It’s that power — built and handed down from generation to generation through joys and adversities — that will be celebrated in the new music of New Birth.
Visit New Birth’s website
Opened October 18, 2011