A jazz banjoist and guitarist with a career that stretched over parts of eight decades, Danny Barker lived the history of jazz in the twentieth century. Then, late in life, he became one of its most qualified chroniclers, drawing upon his recollections of the early days of jazz in New Orleans.
Danny Barker spent his first six years living with his father’s family in a two-story apartment building on Chartre Street across from the French Quarter Ice. His grandfather on his mother’s side was Isidore Barbarin, a founding member of the original Onward Brass Band. And Danny’s uncle, Paul Barbarin, played in bands led by top jazz artists including King Oliver, Henry ‘Red’ Allen, and Sidney Bechet.