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The Detroit Connection: A Conversation with Preservation Hall Jazz Band

October 10, 2014

By Travis Wright



Charlie Gabriel and Ben Jaffe

not only is the legendary New Orleans pianist Allen Toussaint is playing the Detroit Music Hall this weekend, but he's being backed by the equally iconic Preservation Hall Jazz Band, an outfit that famously not only continues to preserve, but educate and entertain the world on the time-honored jazz traditions of the Crescent City.

Preservation Hall is an intuition. And it has Detroit roots.

The musically inclined Gabriel family go back seven generations in New Orleans. But clarinetist Charlie Gabriel and others came to Detroit in the 1940s during the great migration. He’s now back in New Orleans and playing in Preservation Hall. Ben Jaffe is the creative director, bassist, and tuba player of Preservation Hall. His folks founded the place back in the early 1960s.

Touring on the back of their latest record That’s It (produced by Jaffe and My Morning Jacket's Jim James) the band is as strong as ever.

Preservation Hall Jazz Band & Allen Toussaint tickets and showtimes here.

Culture City host Travis Wright spoke with Jaffe and Gabriel about the legacy of Preservation Hall.