About Professor Longhair
New Orleans pianist Henry Byrd, known to the world at large as Professor Longhair, or just "'Fess," was a vital bridge between jazz, rock & roll, and rhythm & blues in the middle of the 20th century. An interpreter, stylist, and innovator, he's a prime figure in New Orleans's rich musical history. His whooping vocal style and percussive, highly rhythmic piano playing are hallmarks of the New Orleans R&B style, and many of his songs ("Big Chief," "Tipitina") have become standards of the genre.
BORNDecember 19, 1918