The Recording Academy Memphis Chapter played host for GRAMMYs On The Road At The 2012 Essence Music Festival held July 5–8 in New Orleans. The Chapter conducted exclusive backstage interviews with artists performing at the festival, including GRAMMY-nominated artist Kenny Lattimore and the GRAMMY-winning Rebirth Brass Band.
Lattimore discussed the benefits of attending the Essence Music Festival, being nominated for a GRAMMY, his biggest career moments, and his musical purpose, among other topics.
"I really have, in the last six months, embraced what I feel my musical purpose is even greater, which is to speak to the hearts of women and into the minds of men, and encourage them in love," said Lattimore.
After starting his music career as a member of the late-'80s vocal group Maniquin, Lattimore pursued a solo career in R&B and in 1996 released his self-titled debut album. The album spawned the Billboard Hot 100 Top 40 hit "For You," which earned a GRAMMY nomination for Best Male R&B Vocal Performance in 1997. From The Soul Of Man was released in 1998, followed by Weekend (2001) and Things That Lovers Do (2003), the latter of which peaked at No. 31 on the Billboard 200. Lattimore's most recent release, Timeless, was released in 2008 and peaked at No. 6 on Billboard's R&B Albums chart. Lattimore's forthcoming album, Back 2 Cool, is set for release in September and features the single "Find A Way."
Rebirth Brass Band co-founders Phil Frazier and Keith Frazier discussed winning a GRAMMY, the evolution of the band and the importance of music, among other topics.
"Here in New Orleans we have a saying: 'You cry when you come into the world, and you rejoice when you're going out," said Keith Frazier. "When you're going out you're going home. That's our rule — to keep people rejoicing until they reach their homecoming."
Formed in 1983 by tuba player Phil Frazier and bass drummer Keith Frazier, the New Orleans-based Rebirth Brass Band has featured members such as trumpeters Shamar Allen and Kermit Ruffins. Today, the band’s lineup includes the Frazier brothers, along with Stafford Agee (trombone), Glen Andrews (trumpet), Vincent Broussard (saxophone), Corey Henry (trombone), Chaderick Honroe (trumpet), Derek Shezbie (trumpet), Derrick Tabb (snare drum). The band released their debut album, Here To Stay, in 1984. They continued to release albums throughout the '90s, including 1992's Take It To The Street and 1999's The Main Event: Live At The Maple Leaf, the latter of which peaked at No. 21 on Billboard's Jazz Albums chart. The group most recent release, 2011's Rebirth Of New Orleans, addressed the rebirth of New Orleans following the devastating effects of Hurricane Katrina, and earned a GRAMMY Award for Best Regional Roots Music Album. In February the Rebirth Brass Band performed at the Pre-Telecast Ceremony prior to the 54th Annual GRAMMY Awards.