"The Music That Made New Orleans Famous" sm

Booking Jazz Bands

For booking or hiring a jazz band, navigating all the jazz options available can be overwhelming and we are here to help. If your event is big or small, corporate or a wedding, a jazz...

Jazz Wedding

The Jazz Wedding Form is at the bottom of this page. Please scroll down and complete to move forward with organizing your Jazz Wedding! Your Wedding day music is important, from the introductory prelude music,...

Drum Lessons with David W. Hansen

Drum Lessons: Now Teaching all lessons on “ZOOM” with 1 to 6 or more cameras:VIDEO INTRODUCTION (Check It Out!) David W. Hansen – drum instructorNEW: ALL Lessons are $40 30 minutes to one hour and...

History of Jazz

A jazz history performance “form” is located at the bottom of this page. Jazz History is: musical, creative, inspiring, amazing and uplifting. Jazz history is also political, elusive, complex, sexual, racial, undermining, dark, smokey and...

Booking Jazz Bands

For booking or hiring a jazz band, navigating all the jazz options available can be overwhelming and we are here to help. If your event is big or small, corporate or a wedding, a jazz festival in Louisiana or a performance half way around the world, a small meeting room or a private home, inside or outside, we have done it all with jazz performances of all styles ranging from a soloist to sixteen-piece bands. Jazz is a unique style, not mainstream, and our exclusive bands and all the bands we offer from New Orleans have been fortunate to perform for audiences of 30 to 10,000 plus.

New Orleans JAZZ BANDS available for performances:

  1. Jazz Band: Trio or Quartet (Traditional, Modern or combination of both styles)
  2. Jazz Band: Five-piece or larger (same options and popular on International performances)
  3. Strolling Jazz Band: Jazz Brunch style (generally Traditional or Dixieland jazz)
  4. Brass Band​: 2nd-Line (popular on International performances, local weddings and corporate events)
  5. ​Jazz Funeral 
  6. Modern Jazz 
  7. Funk/Blues 

In 2017 we celebrated 100 years of recorded jazz. The historical timeline, below, helps understand an overview of jazz styles. All of these styles interlink, blend and progress. We offer jazz bands that specialize and fit into each of these “styles.” They can perform one specific style or a mix of many. If you want background jazz for your corporate meeting or a headliner for your jazz festival, we have the musicians and bands to fit your needs.

  1. Dixieland or Traditional Jazz 1917 through 1929 plus Dixieland revival of the 1950’s through today.
  2. Big Band “Hot Jazz” 1920’s/1930’s
  3. Big Band “Swing” 1940’s/1950’s
  4. BeBop Late 1940’s/1950’s and strong through 1960’s
  5. Modern Jazz 1950’s-1960’s to present day performers.
  6. Funk/Fusion 1960’s-present

Performances with our bands covering all styles of New Orleans jazz include:

  • Everglades  Club, Palm Beach, FL (8 years of annual performances)
  • Venice, Italy (private performance)
  • Rimini, Italy (jazz festival)
  • Sandviken Jazz Fest (Sweden)
  • Imatra Big Band Festival (Finland)
  • Storyville Happy Jazz Club (Finland)
  • Waterfront Hall, Belfast, Ireland
  • Cork Opera House, Cork, Ireland
  • Sao Paulo, Brazil (Concert Hall – Americas)
  • Istanbul, Turkey (Intercontinental Hotel)
  • Trapani, Italy (Jazz Festival)
  • Yokosuka, Japan (Christmas Concert)
  • Buenos Aires, Argentina (NOLA jazz and food experience)
  • St. Catherine’s, Ontario, Canada (Parade)
  • Campeche, Mexico (jazz festival)
  • Dublin, Ireland (private events)
  • Edinburgh, Scotland (jazz festival)
  • and many, many more.

Concert performances to touring:

We have already completed so many performances. Working with a company you can trust is vital. We know how to fine-tune details to be certain the band members make it from their home to your performance and back. Our goal is for the band members to arrive safely, securely and provide a high quality performance for you and your event.

All of our band members and groups are “jazz ambassadors.” When our musicians and bands visit your city they represent our city.

Send us details for your event to start the booking process:

Contact us today:

New Orleans Jazz – Past and Present

where history meets current performing musicians What is our blog about? Music industry-specific content on jazz. Interviews with local jazz...
Read More "New Orleans Jazz – Past and Present"

Jazz Wedding

The Jazz Wedding Form is at the bottom of this page. Please scroll down and complete to move forward with organizing your Jazz Wedding!

Your Wedding day music is important, from the introductory prelude music, the ceremony’s processional to the band’s farewell song. Music captures our emotions, filling us with joy, moving us to tears, and making us want to dance or shake our bodies with exuberance. A jazz wedding is unique providing spectacular sounds and remembered by everyone.

A Jazz Wedding general outline:

Prelude music: Welcome family and friends as they arrive for 10, 15, 20 or 30 minutes with background jazz. This music will set the mood for the main event!

Special seating: (grandparents, parents, special guests): background jazz

Bridesmaids processional: (Bridesmaids may enter one by one or accompanied by the groomsmen, in pairs) For the bridesmaids as they walk up the aisle, have a light, happy song performed for about four minutes. Song suggestions: 1920’s: “Margie,” 1930’s: “On the Sunny Side of the Street,” 1940’s: “It Might As Well Be Spring,” 1950’s: “Satin Doll,” 1960’s: The Girl From Ipanema,” 2018: “Jump,” It’s So Clear To Me,” “You Are The One,” “Love For You” (by David Hansen/Garden District Trio_Band)

Ring Bearer and/or Flower Girl: Background jazz selection from any songs listed.

Bride’s processional: The big moment when you walk with your dad, mom or special chosen person. Select an upbeat song with a beautiful melody and lyrics (even if performed instrumentally …your guests who know jazz, will hear the lyrics). Jazz wedding song suggestions for the bride:

1920’s: “Oh, Lady Be Good!” “Dinah,” “Sweet Georgia Brown,”  “Someone to Watch Over Me,” “Sweet Lorraine,” “Honeysuckle Rose,” “What Is This Thing Called Love?”

1930’s:  “Confessin’,” “Embraceable You,” “Exactly Like You,” “On the Sunny Side of the Street,” “When It’s Sleepy Time Down South,” “It Don’t Mean a Thing (If It Ain’t Got That Swing),” “Stompin’ at the Savoy,” “Summertime,” “Pennies from Heaven,” “There Is No Greater Love,” “The Way You Look Tonight,” “Love Is Here to Stay,” “All the Things You Are,” “In the Mood,”

1940’s: “Don’t Get Around Much Anymore,” “In a Mellow Tone,” “You Stepped Out of a Dream,” “Come Fly with Me,” “Take the ‘A’ Train,” “There Will Never Be Another You,” “Groovin’ High,” “It Might as Well Be Spring,” “Do You Know What It Means to Miss New Orleans,”

1950’s:  “My One and Only Love,” “Satin Doll,” “Fly Me to the Moon,” “The Best Is Yet to Come,” “My Favorite Things,” “Take Five,”

1960’s: “What A Wonderful World,” “One Note Samba,” “Days of Wine and Roses,” “The Girl from Ipanema,” “Summer Samba,” “Wave,”

2018: “Jump,” It’s So Clear To Me,” “You Are The One,” “Love For You” (by David Hansen/Garden District Trio_Band)

Bride and Groom recessional: Following the “I Do’s,” wrap up the ceremony in jazz style with any of the songs not selected from above or a festive jazz title such as: “When the Saint’s Go Marching In,” “Bourbon Street Parade,” “Down by The Riverside,” or (by David Hansen/Garden District Trio_Band) “Mardi Gras Day,” “Jump,” or “You Are The One”


  1. Cocktail Hour (background jazz)
  2. Introduction of the Wedding Party
  3. Introduction of the Newlyweds
  4. First Dance Song (a love song such as “It Had To Be You,” or any of the recommendations not used from the songs above)
  5. Father–Daughter Dance Song (any suggestions from above that have not been performed)
  6. Mother-Son Dance Song (any suggestions from above that have not been performed)
  7. Dinner Music (background jazz)
  8. Toasting
  9. The main reception or dance party: Upbeat jazz selections and/or a DJ spinning your current favorite songs (we recommend adding a DJ along with the jazz band to cover all the styles of music your guests want to dance to.
  10. The jazz band can keep the jazz theme going and, if you desire,  the DJ can add in pop, rock and current top 40)
  11. The Last dance and exit of the Bride and groom: have the jazz band perform Joe Avery or Paul Barbarin’s “Second Line,” “When The Saints Go Marching In,” “Bourbon Street Parade” (David Hansen’s “Mardi Gras Day”) or similar upbeat New Orleans song.
  12. This is also a great time to bring in a Brass Band to perform the last 20-30 minutes with a 2nd line around the reception area then parade the Bride and Groom out of the reception and on their way.

Remember; this is your day and a jazz wedding is extremely unique. A jazz wedding can be customized from a jazz brunch trio outside in the park, to a jazz quartet, full jazz band with vocals, 16 piece big band jazz orchestra, and/or a second-line Brass Band. The options for a jazz wedding are endless and we are here to help you select the best options for your special day.

Please complete our jazz wedding form to begin the process:

New Orleans Jazz – Past and Present

where history meets current performing musicians What is our blog about? Music industry-specific content on jazz. Interviews with local jazz musicians. Visit and read our...
Read More "New Orleans Jazz – Past and Present"

History of Jazz

A jazz history performance “form” is located at the bottom of this page.

Jazz History is:

musical, creative, inspiring, amazing and uplifting. Jazz history is also political, elusive, complex, sexual, racial, undermining, dark, smokey and sinister. All the elements that make up a perfect fictional story or movie theme for a best seller or blockbuster hit. It’s just that jazz history refers to real life stories and amazing music.

Where do we begin? To understand jazz, one must understand all the musical influences and the history leading up to the chance creative genius that unfolded to present a “new” music to the world. All of the pieces fit together nicely leading up to the jazz era. The stories surrounding the jazz era and told afterwards are vague at best, misleading and many times deceptive or one-sided. Today more than ever the stories are political in place of musical. We will attempt to provide a historical timeline based on factual information and let you the reader, historian, musician, listener and aficionado, take the information and digest it however you choose.

Jazz History 101

Welcome to the jazz history and information section:

We begin in 1718 and under French rule, a new land area is becoming New Orleans!

Think back to those times and what sort of music would have been present. European Classical, Military marches, opera and folk music would have been the most prevalent. No one had a radio, TV or recordings. Entertainment was self-made. Many homes had musical instruments with children to adults learning and performing music. Most music was read from sheet music. The classical instruments of piano, harp, violin and guitar would have been the most common and popular in private homes.

Also, remember these were terrible times in history with something called “slavery” especially in New Orleans. Fortunately, the multi-cultural influences of this port city were enhanced by a blend of unique melodies, song, rhythms and harmony from African slaves.

New Orleans was a port city (Port of New Orleans history pages) with commerce coming from the regions of Europe to South America. The shipmates would have spent much of their “off” time singing and performing their own folk songs … most likely with drink in bars or salons. As much as they would have kept to their own, in New Orleans, they would have merged or overlapped sharing their sounds around the city.

In the year 1724 slaves were given Sunday’s off. Sometime after that date Sunday’s in Congo square became a gathering place where African rhythms, song and dance with drums, bells, shakers and a gathering of 50 to 500 or more African slaves expressed their past culture. By 1850 Congo Square gatherings had ended, but the influences of multiple cross-cultures were solidified in the New Orleans region.

In 1762-1763 France turns over the New Orleans area to Spain. About 1798 to 1801 Spain gives Louisiana back to France and in 1803 the United States purchases the Louisiana region from France. At this point New Orleans is opened up to the rest of America and it is really important to note that the population of New Orleans doubled between 1803 to 1810 … yes, doubled in seven years!  After the US purchase in 1803 there was a rush of immigration to New Orleans by Irish, German, Sicilian, Caribbean and American ethnic groups. …all bringing their own cultural heritage which included food and music.

The New Orleans Opera House was built in 1859 and lasted until a fire took it in 1919.

In the 1880’s solo Ragtime piano emerged and at the same time John Phillip Sousa (Concert-Military Band) was extremely popular. Their success spanned the late 1800’s straight through the 1920’s. Along with the Sousa marches, the most popular music of the day was Italian opera.

1895 brought us “Ragtime” with sheet-music published by Ernest Hogan (1895), Ben Harney (1896), William Henry Krell (1897) and the most famous, Scott Joplin (1899).

In 1904, Enrico Caruso, the Italian opera tenor, who lived in New York, was the first million seller of recorded music. In New Orleans, new styles were being formed by changing the feel and style of older songs. Buddy Bolden was labeled the loudest trumpet player in town, influencing other musicians and his band performed in New Orleans between 1900 to 1907. Jelly Roll Morton was a well-known ragtime pianist who began performing in sporting houses or brothels in New Orleans when he was abt. fourteen years old or abt. 1904. By 1911 Jelly Roll Morton was in Chicago and New York and he had a wonderful touring career with stops in Vancouver-Canada, back to Chicago, NY, Washington, DC and Los Angeles where he died in 1941.

In early 1900’s New Orleans, the white and black society bands (segregated by society) such as the Onward Brass Band and Papa Jack Laine’s Reliance Brass Band, were hammering out all the “popular” songs. The young musicians of each band didn’t realize they were in, what are called, “seed” bands. They were building their “chops” and learning their instruments for a new music that was about to arrive … that nobody knew about.

Note: new music wasn’t created in advance … it evolved and was born to popularity by cultural acceptance.

In 1916, twelve years after Enrico’s million selling opera hit a band-leader and drummer, Johnny Stein, took a band to Chicago to perform. His band was the very first to use the name “jass’ in a band’s name. The word had nothing to do with the music and was only a popular “slang” term applied to the band name. The band split up and re-formed under the direction of a New Orleans cornetist, Dominic James “Nick” LaRocca, and he called his band the Original Dixieland Jass Band. They were five talented “American” musicians from New Orleans with different ethnic backgrounds and they did not come from privileged backgrounds. Their early influences came from performing as sidemen with Papa Jack Laine, Braun’s Military Band and other Ragtime or society groups. They would have been influence by all the bands or groups they performed with around New Orleans during the early 1900’s as they were performing sidemen on society gigs. The group’s leader, Dominic James “Nick” LaRocca, was influenced by the music of the Opera House in New Orleans and John Phillip Sousa, as these were his idols. The music they performed and recorded was their own, with many original compositions and new interpretations of popular cover songs such as their “hits” with Dark Town Strutters’ Ball (entered into the Grammy Hall of Fame) and Back Home Again in Indiana. This band made American music history in 1917. From 1916 Chicago they were hired to play in New York City in January 1917 at Reisenweber’s Café, a supper and dance club, located at Columbus Circle and 58th Street. (This is where Jazz at Lincoln Center is located today.) While in New York this band was called in to record for both Columbia and Victor records. Before the end of 1917 they had successfully recorded, and their recordings sold world-wide outselling Enrico. They became the first “popular” American band to have a million selling “Hit” recording. This “popular” band was the Original Dixieland Jass Band. They were the second band to use the word “JASS” and the first to use this word on a recording. The record sales were spectacular, breaking every known record and their name and music were new, original, and fresh. Many people say the music they were performing was already being played in New Orleans, but record producers were sent to New Orleans and sent telegraphs back to the studios saying they couldn’t find the same style of music. This band was lucky to be at the right place (New York) at the right time (new recording equipment and studios) with a new music they were performing. It would be six years of the ODJB repeating million selling records every year until another band from New Orleans had the same success. The successful bands to follow were the New Orleans Rhythm Kings in 1922, and King Oliver in 1923 with sideman Louis Armstrong in his band.

… the rest is “jazz” history.

Below is a timeline of key important musicians/icons from New Orleans and some important information to help understand early New Orleans jazz.

George “Papa Jack” Laine (b. 1873) – not recorded. Leader of a brass band in the late 1800’s and early 1900’s that was a seed band for many young sidemen who became famous jazz musicians.

The Onward Brass Band (1st band): was in play from the late 1800’s and early 1900’s. They didn’t record. This was also a seed band for many musicians who later became known as jazz musicians, such as King Oliver. The talented drummer and composer, Paul Barbarin lead a rendition of the band in the 1960’s. There is a current band in play today that recorded in 2009.

Buddy Bolden (b. 1877) – not recorded and not a jazz musician as the musical definition term did not exist during his years as a performer. He is credited as an innovator “playing the loudest” and influencing musicians performing in the Saloons and gambling joints of the CBD area of New Orleans. Unfortunately, nobody knows how he sounded or performed as there are no recordings.

Joe “King” Oliver (b. 1885) first recorded jazz in 1923

Edward “Kid” Ory (b. 1886) first recorded jazz in 1922

Nick LaRocca (b. 1889) first recorded jass in early 1917 with his band: Original Dixieland Jass band … the very first jass recordings for both Victor and Columbia records. The band name and song titles on their record labels changed in September 1917 from “jass” to “Jazz” and they secured the name as a musical definition term from that point forward. These first million selling records outsold any others until 1923 and most bands changed their size and sound to follow the successful recordings of the ODJB.

Freddie Keppard (b. 1889) first recorded jazz in 1926

Ferdinand “Jelly Roll” Morton (b. 1890) a well known ragtime pianist, first recorded jazz in 1923

Sydney Bechet (b. 1897) first recorded jazz in 1924 then under his own name in 1932

Louis “Satchmo” Armstrong (b. 1901) first recorded jazz in 1923 then under his own name in 1925

Louis Armstrong is most definitely the best jazz “ambassador” of this music from New Orleans. His home in Corona, Queens, New York is a museum worth visiting.

Hire one of our specialized bands for a “jazz history performance”

These have been customized for 30 to 2,500 corporate attendees, 100 school children and may include a time-line of history performance, lectures, slide presentation and question/answer sessions: Complete the form below to start the process:

Drum Lessons with David W. Hansen

Drum Lessons:

  • Now Teaching all lessons on “ZOOM” with 1 to 6 or more cameras:
    VIDEO INTRODUCTION (Check It Out!) David W. Hansen – drum instructor
  • NEW: ALL Lessons are $40
    30 minutes to one hour and we can push beyond this time if you feel like doing more if time permits.
  • You can pay with Venmo, PayPal, Chase Zelle or I can send you an email invoice from QuickBooks.
    So…all forms of payment are accepted.
  • $75/Hour or prepay $280 for four lessons.
  • $40/30 min (Shorter 30 min lessons for kids 12 and under) or prepay $150 for four 30-minute lessons.

David W. Hansen – musician, bandleader, composer, writer/(BMI)

David W Hansen Drummer
  • Call or email today to set up a lesson:
    (504) 427-2008 [email protected]
  • Kids: Book a 30 minute drum lesson (12 and under only)
    …book using the link above for a 60 minute lesson and add a note that it is for a 30 minute lesson.

ACCOLADE David W. Hansen began formal study on snare drum and drum-set at age eight in his hometown; Abbotsford, BC, Canada. At age fourteen he began teaching drum students (Guidone Music Studios on S. Fraser Way) and at age fifteen began performing professionally (band: Duster, with fellow music teachers from Guidone Music Studios). He has two degrees in music and since age fifteen to present Hansen has continuously performed and worked in the music industry.

Musician, Composer, Bandleader

Hansen (born and raised in B.C. Canada) has lived in New Orleans for over 28 years. He introduced his original compositions on the February 2019 release “Garden District Trio; Upward.” This new album includes a collaboration of extremely talented New Orleans musicians. Hansen knows his new original music has listeners hearing and feeling something unique. Clifford Brown Jr. says: “Nice Project, Well Done!” Hansen’s “Garden District Band Hot Groove-7” has performed many times at the French Quarter Festival in New Orleans with his all-star band that has included Brian Murray, Cyrus Nabipoor on trumpet, Clarence Johnson III (sax/vocals), Michael Pierce, Ray Moore on sax, Matt Johnson, Pete Roze on guitar, Jordan Baker, Leslie Martin, John Mahoney, Larry Sieberth, Tom Hook, Eduardo Tozzatto, Jeff Lashway on piano, Brian Quezergue, Ed Wise, Chris Sharkey, Peter Harris on bass, Michaela Harrison on vocals, and David on drums along with thirty-plus other musicians on previous performances. Hansen’s original compositions include nuances of classic standards, New Orleans traditional jazz, bebop, Latin/Jazz to funky New Orleans street beat or second line songs in a very creative and highly improvised setting.


After completing a jazz diploma from Malaspina College/VIU (Nanaimo) and a Music degree from UNT (Denton) in jazz performance, Hansen hit the road performing in North Africa and Los Angeles before settling in 1990’s New Orleans. In ’94 Hansen started his own music company. Hansen’s current focus is on his own groups and writing new music. His own groups include a modern-contemporary jazz to Latin-jazz and funk ensemble ( along with a typical funky street Brass Band ( His own bands have recorded over eleven albums on Hansen’s DHMP Records-Label. Hansen, a BMI artist, writes original compositions with words and music. His band performs these original songs nightly on a seven night a week steady performance he’s contracted in New Orleans since 2006 at Houston’s Restaurant on St. Charles Ave. Completely NOLA influenced and musically infused from performing with the Onward Brass Band, the ODJB, Al Hirt, and a list of talented New Orleans musicians who themselves have performed with everyone from Louis Armstrong, Pete Fountain to the Meters, Hansen soul is enriched beyond his expectations. All the NOLA influences and more can be heard in his drumming and original compositions.