Residents

  • Big Fine Ellen Smith Vocals (Jazz)

    Ms. Smith's repertoire includes jazz standards, blues, rhythm & blues and New Orleans party classics.  She has performed at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival and French Quarter Festival, in addition to festivals in France and Taiwan.

  • Peter “Chuck” Badie Upright bass (Jazz)

    Regularly plays traditional jazz around town, but is best known as the architect of New Orleans R&B sound.  One of the original executives on Harold Batiste's musician-owned collective A.F.O. (All For One) Records.  Had stints as a regular with Lionel Hampton, Sam Cooke, Dave Bartholomew, and Allen Toussaint's bands.

  • Michael Harris Vocals/Bass (Gospel, Jazz)

    Performs with several jazz bands, including Bruce Sun Pie Barnes, Irma Thomas, and Frog Man Henry and sings in a 60-voice gospel choir, Shades of Music.

  • Shamarr Allen Trumpet (Jazz, Funk, Rock, Hip Hop)

    Presently leads traditional jazz bands and his own funk and rock group, The Underdawgs.  Also runs a weekly music clinic where he teaches music to young jazz enthusiasts.

  • Al “Carnival Time” Johnson Vocals/Piano/Trumpet (R&B)

    Alvin Johnson, Sr., best known for his famous song, "Carnival Time," has been a New Orleans Mardi Gras icon for over 40 years.  As a Rhythm & Blues performer, Al has been a New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival veteran and has worked with the likes of Aaron Neville, Oliver Morgan, Bobby Lonero as well as the late Tommy Ridgley, Jessie Hill, Bobby Mitchell, Eddie Bo & Ernie K-Doe. 

  • Smokey Johnson Drums (Jazz, Funk, Blues, Soul, R&B)

    He was one of the musicians, session players, and songwriters who have served as the backbone for New Orleans' output of jazz, funk, blues, soul and R&B music for decades.  Was a co-writer of the New Orleans Mardi Gras standard called "It Ain't My Fault."  He was a retired drummer living in the Musicians’ Village who passed away on October 6, 2015 leaving behind a legacy that will remain forever.

  • Cherice Harrison-Nelson (Mardi Gras Indian)

    A teacher in the New Orleans public schools, Cherice Harrison-Nelson is an activist in preserving the city's unique culture. She's a third generation Mardi Gras Indian, the daughter of the late Big Chief of the Guardians of the Flame, Donald Harrison, Sr., and curator of the Mardi Gras Indian Hall of Fame. Harrison-Nelson was one of the first residents of the Musicians' Village.

  • Troy Sawyer Trumpet/Violin (Jazz, Classical)

    Is the leader of his own band, The Troy Sawyer Jazz Combo, and an illustrious composer, arranger, and producer as well. Has performed at noted venues and festivals in New Orleans including Tipitina’s, Sweet Lorraine’s Jazz Club, the Satchmo Festival and the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival. Over the years at Jazz Fest, he has performed in the Gospel Tent with a variety of jazz ensembles.

  • Margie Perez Singer/Songwriter (Blues, Pop, New Orleans Funk)

    In addition to leading her own band, Margie takes on many other projects including the West African percussion jazz band, Fatien Ensemble, the Afro-Cuban Jazz group, Michael Skinkus and Moyuba, and her latest project, The HoneyPots.

  • Calvin Johnson Jr. Tenor Saxophone (Jazz)

    Leader of the Calvin Johnson Quartet.  Has also frequently been a headline event at New Orleans festivals, including the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, the French Quarter Festival and the Voodoo Music Festival.

  • Tanya Huang Violin (Fusion)

    Tanya Huang was born in Taiwan and has been playing violin since she was six.  She has played in a variety of venues ranging from concert halls to streets and subways all around the world, and has long favored playing in the streets of New Orleans.

  • Helen Gillet Cello/Loop Pedal/French-English Vocals (Jazz, Funk, Rock)

    Cellist, singer, composer and improviser Helen Gillet grew up in Belgium, Singapore, Chicago and Wisconsin before moving to New Orleans in 2002. She has since successfully forged a path for the cello amidst the city’s thriving musical culture.  She has performed extensively across the United States and Western Europe.