The man who may well be the world’s oldest performing jazz musician is approaching his 99th birthday. Befitting a man nearly the age of the music itself, he’s from New Orleans. Lionel Ferbos was born July 17, 1911. He played trumpet in the 1920s with bands led by Walter “Fats” Pichon and Sidney Desvigne and in the 1930s with Harold Dejan and the quintessential New Orleans alto saxophonist Captain John Handy. In demand for his reading ability and lead playing, Ferbos is the trumpeter in the New Orleans Ragtime Orchestra, a band founded by guitarist and clarinetist Lars Edegran in 1967. He plays regularly at the Palm Court Café on Decatur Street. The Palm Court is planning a bash for him on his birthday.
This video produced last year by the New Orleans Times-Picayune‘s John McCusker traces Ferbos’s career. I am going to make every effort to adapt Ferbos’s concluding advice about how to insure a long life and a long marriage.