Steve Pistorius: Standard Bearer of New Orleans Jazz

Pianist Steve Pistorius has honored the New Orleans Jazz tradition since the 1970s as a piano soloist, sideman, bandleader, and educator. 

Hal Smith: What was the recording, or live performance, which inspired your interest in jazz?

Steve Pistorius: I’d love to tell you that I was exposed to New Orleans Jazz from childhood on—given that I was born there—but I grew up in the suburbs of New Orleans, so I heard a little bit of it here and there. I didn’t get to places like Preservation Hall until I was in my later teens.

Hot Jazz Jubile

The Revival style of New Orleans Jazz (which at the time was featured every night at the Hall) was my first inspiration to play Jazz. The second was a record of Turk Murphy’s Band called “The Many Faces of Ragtime.” I went nuts over that record. I learned every tune and played them all on the piano. The third was someone playing Joplin on a piano in a dorm lobby at Louisiana State University. I was so taken by the music that I begged the player to tell me everything she could about it.

Who are the pianists you admire besides Jelly Roll Morton?

Thanks for putting Morton at the top of the list where he belongs! Of the early greats, Eubie Blake is one of my other favorites. His music, while extremely complex and difficult, is absolutely joyful and completely unique among the East Coast players. Other early players I like are Fats Waller, James P. Johnson, Luckey Roberts, Steve Lewis, Earl Hines, Lil Hardin, and Jimmy Blythe. Don Ewell is, in my opinion, the greatest Jazz pianist of later generations. No one has ever played Morton better than he, or played more appropriately in any band situation. Butch Thompson has always been an inspiration with his beautiful Morton-influenced playing, and I’m grateful for the many encouraging words from him through the years.

UpBeat Records

Morten Gunnar Larsen is a brilliant pianist and composer. One of his many strong suits is his fearless and ebullient renditions of Eubie Blake material. I consider him a dear friend and great role model. In the early 1980s, Morten taught me the piano parts to the “One Mo’ Time” show which ran for many years at the Toulouse St. Theatre. He was leaving town for a while and needed a replacement. Every day for a week he showed up at my apartment to coach me. On my opening night he showed up to listen, sitting right up front.

Steve and Morten Gunnar Larsen at Brocato's Ice Cream New Orleans
Steve Pistorius and Morten Gunnar Larsen at Brocato’s Ice Cream New Orleans

I’ve learned so much from listening to John Sheridan and Mark Shane. I mention them together because they impress me in much the same way: Impeccable time, great accompanists, band players and soloists, and never do I seem to hear a note that is not necessary. Two of my heroes!

I always liked Burt Bales. He had an uncluttered approach to playing this music, with great time and a solid left hand. Jeanette Kimball was my favorite New Orleans pianist in my early Preservation Hall days. A very melodic player with a strong rhythmic pulse and little tolerance for people in a rhythm section who couldn’t keep good time. I also want to acknowledge a few of my peers here in New Orleans. David Boeddinghaus, an amazingly proficient stride pianist, has called New Orleans home for over 35 years.

John Royen, also an excellent stride player, made New Orleans his home after finishing his music studies at Loyola University around 40 years ago. Way back in our 20s, John and I decided to make the rounds in New Orleans and terrorize local pianists by sitting in and playing showy four-handed piano numbers. After sitting in at the Gazebo in the French Market, the owner fired the pianist on duty and hired John and I! I remember trying to get the poor guy another gig! Speaking of young people, Kris Tokarski is a very good pianist who has played in New Orleans for several years now. He loves Jelly Roll Morton and the great stride players as well.

What was your first gig in New Orleans?


After finishing high school in 1972, starting and dropping out of music school at LSU that fall, signing myself in to a mental institution for several weeks (that’s for another interview), a job pressure washing houses, and re-enrollment at University of New Orleans music school, I saw an ad in the Times-Picayune for a Barrelhouse piano player. I showed up at the specified time and place and was the only one there!

The gig was at a Shakey’s Pizza Parlor in Metairie, Louisiana, just over the New Orleans border. I was paired with Neil Unterseher, a terrific banjoist who moved to New Orleans in the 1960s. Neil was a patient mentor and teacher, showing me good chord changes that most of the New Orleans musicians played. Neil is still going strong at 80, and I hope to play music with him again soon.

When you first became a professional musician, there were still a number of jazz pioneers who were performing around town. Can you name some of the great musicians you heard, and worked with?


I came along in time to hear, meet or play with some great old timers. Percy and Willie Humphrey, Sadie Colar (Pierce, Petersen, Goodson), Kid Sheik Colar, Chink Martin, Kid Thomas Valentine, Cié Frazier, Louis Barbarin, Raymond Burke, Irwin Leclere, Jeanette Kimball, Chester Zardis, Manny Sayles, Narvin Kimball, Father Al Lewis, Chester Jones, Billie and DeDe Pierce, Preston Jackson, Frog Joseph, Danny Barker, Lionel Ferbos, John Robichaux, and Big Jim Robinson.

Did you receive valuable advice, or mentoring from any of these older musicians?

All of the musicians mentioned taught me valuable lessons, whether by example, by speaking to me, or by just being kind. Many treated me like one of their grandchildren. Kid Sheik called me to his room before the concert on the first night of a Preservation Hall bus tour. He handed me a piece of paper on which he had written out the names of the tunes and all of the keys for the show. He said, “Just want to make sure you got all these numbers before you get up there to play.”


Banu Gibson New Orleans Hot Jazz Orchestra 1981 with Steve
Banu Gibson New Orleans Hot Jazz Orchestra 1981 with Steve Pistorius

Danny Barker always had an encouraging kind word for me. Once, he walked up to our stage at French Quarter Fest and said “You played the verse to ‘Willie the Weeper.’ Sounded good!” Willie Humphrey turned towards me in between tunes one night and said, “Son, hit a chord for me nice and strong on that first beat when I’m playing my chorus.” That taught me to keep my rhythm simple and close to the beat to give soloists more freedom. Big Jim Robinson signed my cast after I broke my arm in a car accident at 17. Jeanette Kimball was always nice to me, and once told me “I’m going to visit my family next week and I told them they should hire YOU!”

What an honor! Listening to these musicians play was perhaps the most valuable lesson of all. I always noticed a strong work ethic in those old timers. Always nicely dressed, early to the gig. Once I traveled to Singapore with Kid Sheik and his band. Around 4:30 p.m. one day I was heading out of the hotel to sightsee. Pick up time for the show was 6:30. In the lobby were three band members, suits on, instruments in hand, ready to go!


Starting in the 1970s there was quite a boom in the music business in New Orleans. What are some of the bands you have worked with over the years?

Neil Unterseher and the Razzberrie Ragtimers, The Tin Rainbow Ragtimers, Bob Adams and the Levee Ragtime Band, Michael White’s Original Liberty Jazz Band, Preservation Hall Jazz Band, Banu Gibson and the New Orleans Hot Jazz Orchestra, The New Orleans Blue Serenaders (in the show “One Mo’ Time”), Jacques Gauthé’s Creole Rice Yerba Buena Jazz Band, my own Mahogany Hall Stompers, Chris Tyle’s Silver Leaf Jazz Band, Duke Heitger’s Steamboat Stompers, Eddie Bayard’s New Orleans Classic Jazz Orchestra, the Frisco Syncopators, Orange Kellin’s New Orleans Deluxe Orchestra, John Gill’s Novelty Orchestra, the Southern Syncopators (led by me), the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra, The Riverside Jazz Collective, Benny Amón and his New Orleans Pearls and Tyler Thomson’s Doro Wat Jazz Band. There are quite a few more as well but this is a good sampling of the last 48 years.

You have also played in San Francisco style bands. Who are some of the musicians from that genre who you were able to meet, or work with?

Thanks to Jacques Gauthé and yourself, I have had the pleasure of meeting and/or playing music with pianist Burt Bales, reed man Bob Helm, tuba player Bill Carroll, Lu Watters, trombonist Bob Mielke, and soprano sax player George Probert. I think I actually levitated the first time I played music with Bill Carroll! To me, his style of tuba playing is one of the main ingredients in the unique two-beat “swagger” of the Lu Watters and Turk Murphy bands. I got to record with him and to play some great gigs, including a tour of the Middle East.

Steve, Duke Heitger, Tim Laughlin, Tom Saunders - Christmas Eve 2017
Steve Pistorius, Duke Heitger, Tim Laughlin, Tom Saunders – Christmas Eve 2017

Bob Helm was a regular visitor to New Orleans. I was on a session or two with him as well as some gigs in New Orleans. One afternoon Bob was sitting in with John Gill’s band at the Maison Bourbon. It was Jazz Fest season, and three other reed players were already on the stand. I remember thinking “There’s no way he can come up with a fourth harmony part!” He did… George Probert had so much fun when he played with us at Mahogany Hall. Bob Mielke was a wonderful trombonist. I played a festival in California with him.

In the late 1980s and early ’90s you led the Mahogany Hall Stompers, playing afternoons at “Lulu White’s Mahogany Hall” (before the DUKES of Dixieland played at night). That afternoon gig became a magnet for visiting musicians from across the U.S. and overseas as well. Can you name some of the guests who sat in with the Stompers?

I’m so proud of the fact that we managed to get away with playing world class early jazz music at Mahogany Hall for so long! Quality people showed up to enjoy it, and quality musicians showed up to hear it, to sit in and to fill in with the band on occasion.

Two fine young clarinetists would sit in with the band. One was New Orleans’ own Tim Laughlin and the other was Dan Levinson from New York. Eddy Davis—who sadly succumbed to COVID-19 in April—sat in on banjo. George Probert played soprano sax with us more than once, as did the wonderful Bob Helm.

I had the honor of hiring two of my favorite pianists to play the gig while I was out of town: Morten Gunnar Larsen and Butch Thompson. Pianist Burt Bales came in one day. He didn’t want to play but I sure enjoyed chatting with him on the breaks. Claude Luter sat in with us, as did Maxim Saury; both giants of the the French jazz scene. That gig was indeed a magnet for quality musicians!

2018 New Orleans Ragtime Festival performance on Steppin' Out with Peggy Scott Laborde on WYES TV New Orleans
2018 New Orleans Ragtime Festival performance on Steppin’ Out with Peggy Scott Laborde on WYES TV New Orleans

What were some of the musical highlights for you during the 1980s and 1990s?

So much happened during those years! Playing piano in the band for the “One Mo’ Time” show at the Toulouse St. Theatre was definitely a highlight. I got to play with trumpeter Lionel Ferbos and drummer John Robichaux. Pud Brown was on clarinet. Lionel had a sweet, old time melodic New Orleans sound.

John Robichaux, or Robe as he liked to be called, always knew the right dance tempo for any number. If the leader kicked off a tune too fast, like “Cakewalkin’ Babies From Home,” Robe would just put the tempo where it was supposed to be. The cast members loved him for that. Whenever the audience was unresponsive, he would say in a loud whisper, “Steve! TV watchers!”

Gunhild Carling and Steve
Gunhild Carling and Steve Pistorius

Pud Brown was an incredible musician who was always doing something he wasn’t supposed to be doing. He usually had a magazine on the music stand; he didn’t need the music. And kept a basket of clarinet parts next to his seat. In between tunes he would take apart and reassemble his clarinet, using parts from the basket. Somehow, he always managed to be ready for the next tune.

Preservation Hall called in late 1980 and asked if I would consider sitting next to an ailing Sweet Emma Barrett and play piano when she faltered. I played several nights with her, and after she got used to me being there, she seemed to enjoy the company.

When she rested while I played, often there would be a tug on my right shirt sleeve. I’d lean over to hear her say some pretty funny things. One night, she whispered, “How many ‘skirts’ you got?” I replied, “11 or 12.” She looked shocked and said “You gonna catch somethin’!” That was my introduction to the Hall.

I should mention that manager Resa Lambert always insisted on paying me the full salary for each night, even if I only played one or two songs. Playing music with drummers Cié Frazier and Louis Barbarin, bassist Chester Zardis and others was an incredible learning experience. Those three men alone have caused me to expect the impossible from drummers and bass players to this day! New Orleans style jazz has some magical elements that these musicians understood and conveyed every time they played. There is something in the rhythm and feel of real New Orleans Jazz that cannot be verbalized, but when it’s there you know it.

Another highlight of the ’80s and ’90s was the arrival in New Orleans of some very good jazz musicians from other parts of the world. John Gill, Duke Heitger, Tom Saunders, yourself, Chris Tyle, Tom Fischer, David Sager and Banu Gibson are all in that group. I have formed bands with them, played in their bands, created gigs and recorded and travelled with them. One common denominator is their collective love and knowledge of early jazz music which had been very neglected in New Orleans. They have raised our musical standards and helped ensure this music lives on.

Dr. Michael White and Steve Pistorius
Dr. Michael White and Steve Pistorius

Dr. Michael White, New Orleans clarinetist, Jazz historian and educator, has opened so many doors for me. I’ve been the piano player in his Original Liberty Jazz Band since 1980, playing festivals and venues all over the world. We’ve played at the Village Vanguard in New York a total of about 17 weeks since 1990, played the Apollo Theater, Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall, Kennedy Center, toured China, Japan, Scandinavia, Europe, New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival every year since 1980 (except this year of the pandemic!) and Tulane University Graduation for many years (we filmed a set for their online graduation this year).

When Hurricane Katrina struck in 2005, did you temporarily relocate to another city—or were you able to stay in New Orleans?

I was on tour with Wendell Brunious in Japan when Katrina hit. The storm hit on Monday the 29th of August, and we were not able to leave Japan until Wednesday the 31st. While boarding our flight from Tokyo to Dallas we got the news that the levees had failed and that 80 percent of New Orleans would be flooded. Returning to New Orleans was impossible.

I flew from Dallas to Myrtle Beach, SC, to stay with family in that area. Soon I learned that my neighborhood had seven feet of water. I feared for the lives of my six cats and three dogs that my pet sitter had been forced to abandon. Thanks to some special animal rescue people and other angels, I was reunited with two of my dogs and five of my cats. One of those cats, Fred, is still going at age 20! I went back to the city in November of that year with my animal survivors and lived a year in an apartment uptown, another year in a FEMA trailer in my driveway, and finally moved back into my home in 2008. Talking about any portion of my Katrina experience is still intensely emotional for me.

There has been another spike in New Orleans musical activity in the past few years with all the clubs opening on Frenchmen Street. Have you had some good gigs at some of those establishments?

I have played in some good bands on Frenchmen St., led by musicians like trumpeter Ben Polcer, singer and trumpeter Marla Dixon, banjoist Chris Edmunds, and bassist Tyler Thomson. This spike in musical activity happened post-Katrina (since 2005, we refer to events happening either pre-Katrina or post-Katrina). From the large group that arrived here to play, we were fortunate enough to meet and sometimes mentor a fairly small group of young people who really had some ability to play and willingness to learn. We have nurtured them and incorporated most of them into the larger picture of New Orleans music, and I consider all of them to be a blessing to New Orleans and its culture.

Steve Pistorius Southern Syncopators at French Quarter Festival
Steve Pistorius Southern Syncopators at French Quarter Festival New Orleans 2019

Unfortunately some of the post-Katrina crowd brought with them a pay system involving the passing of tip jars to make money. As someone who has made a good living for 48 years playing music jobs that pay a professional wage, I cannot condone hustling a tip jar. I won’t pass it around myself, but I’m not going to miss a night of great music and refuse to play because of it, either.

I strongly feel that music as a profession hinges on musicians demanding a fair wage for their work. Whether this can be accomplished through Unions or other methods remains to be seen. I am seeing more and more younger musicians pushing for better pay and conditions, and that is encouraging.

You have also played fairly often at Preservation Hall. Can you describe some of those gigs?

In the last several years, three doors opened at the Hall which enabled me to present some excellent early jazz music there. First, they started a program of early 45 minute sets which took place in the late afternoon before the regular night sets. I was offered a Friday slot as leader. I hesitated, and when the manager said that I could pick my own band I was sold. My Southern Syncopators played every Friday for two years to very enthusiastic audiences.

Steve Pistorius at Preservation Hall
Steve Pistorius at Preservation Hall

The second was a series of concerts in the afternoon called “Matinee Concerts.” These focused on the icons of New Orleans jazz and featured James Evans and Orange Kellin on reeds, and Benny Amón on drums. Hard work but well worth it. We did shows of Johnny Dodds and Sidney Bechet, A.J. Piron (Duke Heitger joined us on that one), Tony Jackson and Jelly Roll Morton, King Oliver and more. Every concert was well attended and enjoyed.

I was asked by Ashley Shabankareh, the program director of the Preservation Hall Foundation, to conduct educational concerts and master classes for visiting schools and colleges from all over the country. I was allowed to hire the band, which enabled me to pick musicians who could not only play well but discuss important principles of jazz music with the students that come from on the job experience rather than from a textbook. Every concert has been extremely rewarding. Preservation Hall Foundation has offered these concerts to hundreds of schools and colleges absolutely free of charge.

Currently, you are leading an ensemble called the Southern Syncopators. Can you say something about that group and the repertoire that you have chosen for it?

I started using the name “Southern Syncopators” after Hurricane Katrina for concerts, special events, and local festivals. The repertoire has always been a mix of New Orleans revival, Piron, Dodds, Bechet, Armstrong, Morton, Clarence Williams, Sam Morgan, Noone, and others.

Lots of my favorite musicians have played in the band, including Fred Lonzo, Duke Heitger, Orange Kellin, James Evans, David Jellema, Joe Goldberg, Benny Amón, Tom Fischer, Charlie Fardella, David Sager, Kerry Lewis, Tyler Thomson, Clint Baker, Jon-Erik Kellso, and yourself. We’ll be back in action as soon as conditions permit!

Orange Kellin, Duke Heitger, Steve, Benny Amon - Pedacinhos Do Ceo Music Club, Belo Horizonte, Brazil 2017
Orange Kellin, Duke Heitger, Steve Pistorius, Benny Amon – Pedacinhos Do Ceo Music Club, Belo Horizonte, Brazil 2017

What other bands are you working with at this time?

(When there’s no pandemic) I play several days each week on the Natchez Steamboat with a wonderful trio led by Duke Heitger. On the regular roster are Tom Fischer, Tim Laughlin, Neil Unteresher, Tom Saunders, Benny Amón, Alex Belhaj and John Gill. I play early shows every Friday at Preservation Hall with Wendell Brunious (leader), Fred Lonzo, Richard Moten, Orange Kellin, and Joe Lastie. I lead my quartet at Buffa’s Back Room every Sunday night with a pool of terrific musicians including Joe Goldberg, James Evans, Orange Kellin, John Gill, Alex Belhaj, and Benny Amón, and I usually play about once a month at Snug Harbor with Michael White’s band.

Richard Moten, Guillermo from Jimmy Kimmel show and Steve
Richard Moten, Guillermo from Jimmy Kimmel show and Steve Pistorius

During the last couple of years, I’ve performed with a band sponsored by Lincoln Center and Wynton Marsalis that does educational shows on different eras of jazz music at several charter schools around New Orleans. In 2018 I had the honor of being hired by Disney (referred by extraordinary New Orleans drummer Herlin Riley) to play on the soundtrack of the remake of Lady and the Tramp. The band included Tom Fischer, the late Lucien Barbarin, and Nicholas Payton.

You were one of the original instructors of the New Orleans Adult Jazz Camp in San Diego. Now you are a faculty member of the New Orleans Trad Jazz Camp which was organized by Banu Gibson, Leslie Cooper, and Nita Hemeter. What are your thoughts on being an educator?

I love the role of educator so long as I am given freedom to teach my own way. I’m grateful to have been given that freedom while teaching both the San Diego and New Orleans camps. You have to love something to do it well, and I love the old time jazz in all of its flavors. I also love to share my experience and knowledge with others. It’s gratifying to see the music come alive for the students, learning to respect and appreciate the melodies and chord structures of tunes, and mostly to see them progress and be better able to do their job in a band setting. The nicest compliment I ever received at the New Orleans camp was “Steve, I love your passion!”

Piano instructors at New Orleans Trad Jazz Camp - Steve, Kris Tokarski, David Boeddinghaus
Piano instructors at New Orleans Trad Jazz Camp – Steve Pistorius, Kris Tokarski, David Boeddinghaus

I’d like to expound on the question a bit to include mentorship… For years now, I have mentored young musicians. Anyone seriously interested in the music is always welcome to come over to my house and ask questions, discuss principles and play some tunes together. They often get served some good New Orleans food. I’m so thrilled to see young musicians interested in early jazz and asking for guidance from older musicians.

You have recorded some outstanding sessions over the years—as bandleader and also as a sideman. What are some of your favorite recordings?

Of the sessions under my name, the Stomp Off album Kiss Me Sweet from 1990 is a standout. It features Chris Tyle, Tom Fischer, Tim Laughlin, and yourself. With a small band, we captured the feeling of early Armstrong, Bunk Johnson, and others without a hint of imitation. I still love listening to it. The late Bob Erdos, head of Stomp Off Records, told me more than once that it was his favorite album in the catalogue.

My latest release, which came out right at the start of the pandemic, is another favorite. It’s called Living Room Sessions Vol. 1 and features mostly younger musicians who are playing this music like old pros. I am proud to have mentored some of them. We offer a variety of early jazz material including Piron, Morton, Dodds, Bechet, Williams, and Noone. The lineup features stellar playing by Joe Goldberg and James Evans on clarinet, soprano sax, c melody sax and bass clarinet, Benny Amón on drums, Tyler Thomson on bass, and Maxwell Poulos on mandolin and tenor banjo. Ryan Baer recorded us at my house on a reel to reel machine using one antique RCA ribbon microphone.

Detroit Brooks and Steve
Detroit Brooks and Steve Pistorius

Dancing The Jelly Roll, also on Stomp Off, is probably my favorite recording as a sideman. Recorded in Cincinnati in 1996, it is one of the best Ragtime recordings I’ve ever heard. It was an all star version of your Down Home Jazz Band: The late Frank Powers, Leah Bezin, Mike Walbridge, Chris Tyle, and yourself on drums.

Here’s another favorite as a sideman: Dr Michael White recorded a terrific session of mostly original tunes called Dancing In The Sky in the early 2000s. It’s on Basin St, Records. I still enjoy playing many of these tunes with his band.

I should stop there but I really must acknowledge a number of other recordings led by you, Duke Heitger, Chris Tyle and John Gill in the ’80s and ’90s. In my opinion they are all world class recordings of early jazz music.

How have you coped with the loss of income due to the COVID-19 situation?

Steve with new puppies Cosmo and Luna
Steve Pistorius with new puppies Cosmo and Luna

I’m happy to report that I’m in okay financial shape for the time being. I’ve played a zillion gigs in recent years and have been able to save some money. I get a nice pension check every month from the Musicians’ Union. People and organizations tend to show up and help musicians during hard times.

The Preservation Hall Foundation, students of the New Orleans Trad Jazz Camp, The New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Foundation, and the Jazz Foundation of America have been extremely generous to me and other musicians. Restaurants big and small are serving delicious meals to hundreds of hospitality and gig workers every day. Self-employed people like me have also been able to get unemployment benefits and help from the Small Business Administration.

Musicians and other performing artists will be the last ones to return to work so I hope this country can get it together soon. Funding and savings won’t last forever and many musicians I know are out of resources already.

Are there any new musical projects you would like to pursue in the future?

There are so many musical projects I still want to do at 65. I love this music now as much as I did when I was 18, and as long as there are like-minded musicians around, I’ll keep organizing sessions and concerts. Preservation Hall is a uniquely wonderful place to play music as it is free of any amplification. People come there to hear music, no cell phones, food or drink orders taken; just music. I’m hoping for the chance to do more concerts there focusing on the legends of New Orleans jazz.

I’m looking at other venues and funding sources for similar programming as well. A tribute to the New Orleans Rhythm Kings scheduled for this year’s Jazz and Heritage festival was of course cancelled along with all the other gigs and festivals, and I hope we can perform at all of them in 2021. I hope to do a Volume 2 of my Living Room Sessions at the end of this year.

Steve Pistorius -Sunday night gig at Buffa's
Steve Pistorius -Sunday night gig at Buffa’s

It’s important for me to say that my regular day to day gigs like the Steamboat Natchez are anything but dull and predictable. We are constantly playing new material. There’s nothing stale, worn out or outdated about early jazz music, and there is never any reason to make it “hip” or “relevant” or to add other styles to it to make it palatable. If one loves this music, there is no need to fix it. It’s not broken! Luckily, there have always been musicians in my life who feel the same.

Playing this music well requires hard work. When I present a seven-piece band playing a one-hour show, know that many, many hours of preparation and rehearsal went into that show. We get paid for the actual show, but the countless hours of preparation are a labor of love.

This has been a very tough and frustrating year for musicians. We will bounce back as we always do, and you’ll get to come out and enjoy live music again as well. As my good friend Orange Kellin is fond of saying, “Can’t Wait!”

Visit Steve Pistorius online at

A Selected Discography of Steve Pistorius

Antilles Records

Dr. Michael White “Crescent City Serenade”
Antilles ‎– 422-848 545-2

“New Year’s at the Village Vanguard”
Antilles ‎– 314-512 168-2

Basin Street Records

Dr. Michael White “Jazz from the Soul of New Orleans” BSR 0502-2

“Dancing in the Sky” BSR 0503-2

“Blue Crescent” BSR 0504-2

“Adventures in New Orleans Jazz, vol. 1” BSR 0505-2

“Adventures in New Orleans Jazz, vol. 2” BSR 0506-2

“Tricentennial Rag” BSR 0507 – 2

Gentilly Records

Tim Laughlin “New Standards”

GHB/Jazzology/Audiophile/Solo Art

Ernie Carson and the Castle Jazz Band “At the Hookers’ Ball” GHB BCD 125

“Christmas at the Castle” GHB BCD 330

“If I Had a Talking Picture of You” GHB BCD 385

Chris Clifton and his All – Stars “Memory of a Friend” GHB BCD 190

Charlie Fardella and his Sensation Jazz Band Jazzology JCD 287

Jacques Gauthe’ and his Creole Rice Jazz Band of New Orleans featuring Bob Helm “Yerba Buena Style” GHB BCD 331

Lee Gunness Sings The Blues GHB BCD 314

Reckless Blues GHB BCD 521

Bob Havens & his Jazz Band “Back Home Again in New Orleans” Jazzology JCD 364

Duke Heitger’s Krazy Kapers Jazzology JCD 339

Duke Heitger’s New Orleans Wanderers with Bob Havens “What is This Thing Called Love?” Jazzology JCD 361

Duke Heitger’s Steamboat Stompers GHB BCD 399

vol. 2 GHB BCD 534

Jazzology All-Stars 50th Anniversary Jazz Bash Jazzology JCD 350

Barbara Lea with Bob Havens’ Jazz Band “Do You Know What It Means To Miss New Orleans?” Audiophile ACD 333

Claude Luter – Jacques Gauthe’ Sextet “Red Hot Reeds” GHB BCD 219

New Orleans Joymakers with Topsy Chapman GHB BCD 484

Steve Pistorius “Rags and Stomps” Solo Art SACD 123

Steve Pistorius & the Mahogany Hall Stompers “’Tain’t No Sin” GHB BCD 289

Steve Pistorius Trio “Under the Creole Moon” GHB BCD 552

George Probert “The Incredible George Probert” GHB BCD 70

Hal Smith’s Creole Sunshine Band “Bourbon Street Memories” GHB BCD 350

“Sweet Little Papa” GHB BCD 403

Smith – Tyle Frisco Syncopators “Milneburg Joys” GHB BCD 277

Chris Tyle’s Silver Leaf Jazz Band of New Orleans “New Orleans Wiggle” GHB BCD 347

Sylvia “Kuumba” Williams “From New Orleans” GHB BCD 319

Good Time Jazz

Chris Tyle’s Silver Leaf Jazz Band “Great Composers of New Orleans Jazz” GTJ 15005

Independent Labels

Benny Amón’s New Orleans Pearls

Creole Syncopators “The Storyville Years”

Charlie Halloran and the Quality Six

Alex Owen’s Messy Cookers Jazz Band: “Get Out and Get Under the Moon”

“That’s My Home”

Steve Pistorius “Living Room Sessions, vol. 1”

“New Orleans Shuffle”

“Steamboat Days”

Steve Pistorius Quartet: “The Music of Bunk Johnson; Live at Snug Harbor”

Lort Records

Rick Trolsen “Sunrise on Bourbon Street”

MBM Records

Mark Braud “Hot Sausage Rag”

Stomp Off Records

Eddie Bayard’s New Orleans Classic Jazz Orchestra vol. 2 “Blowin’ Off Steam” Stomp Off CD 1223

Down Home Jazz Band “Dancing the Jellyroll” Stomp Off CD 1316

Frisco Syncopators. “San Francisco Bound” Stomp Off CD SOS 1211

Chris Tyle’s New Orleans Rover Boys “Tribute to Benny Strickler” Stomp Off CD 1235

Chris Tyle’s Silver Leaf Jazz Band “The Smiler” Stomp Off CD SOS 1258

“Sugar Blues: A Tribute to King Oliver” Stomp Off CD SOS 1298

“Here Comes the Hot Tamale Man: An Homage to Freddie Keppard” Stomp Off CD SOS 1311

John Gill’s Dixieland Serenaders “Looking for a Little Bluebird” Stomp Off CD 1295

“Take Me To That Midnight Cakewalk Ball” Stomp Off CD 1304

“Listen To That Dixie Band” Stomp Off CD 1321

John Gill’s Novelty Orchestra of New Orleans “Smile, Darn Ya, Smile” Stomp Off CD 1227

vol. 2 “Headin’ for Better Times” Stomp Off CD 1270

Steve Pistorius & the Mahogany Hall Stompers “Kiss Me, Sweet” Stomp Off CD 1221

Bob Schulz’s Frisco Jazz Band “Travelin’ Shoes” Stomp Off CD 1315

Note: Most of the recent recordings by Steve Pistorius are available from the Louisiana Music Factory . Bandcamp also has some of the newest albums available as CDs or downloads. Jazzology Records stocks all the sessions Steve recorded for the associated labels. Older recordings on Stomp Off may often be found on eBay, Amazon Marketplace, and CDandLP.

Video Links

The Johnny Dodds Music “I’m Goin’ Huntin’”

“Wild Man Blues”

Duke Heitger “Wolverine Blues”

Duke Heitger’s Steamboat Stompers “Sweet Lovin’ Man”

Steve Pistorius “Weary Blues”

Steve Pistorius Quartet Live at Preservation Hall “Bright Star Blues”

“Kiss Me, Sweet”

Steve Pistorius Quartet Live at Steamboat Stomp “Forty and Tight”

Steve Pistorius Southern Syncopators “Frog-I-More Rag”

C.W. Stoneking “Good Luck Charm”

Hal Smith is an Arkansas-based drummer and writer. He leads the New Orleans Night Owls and the
Mortonia Seven and works with a variety of jazz and swing bands. Visit him online at

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