Award winning Créole banjoist guitarist vocalist Don Vappie is the only internationally recognised New Orleans Jazz banjoist performing today and is considered one of the most notable banjoists in the history of New Orleans.
Honouring the tradition of his predecessors, banjoist Danny Barker and Jonny St Cyr, Vappie has kept alive Créole songs of New Orleans and has become an emblem for Créole cultural history as a headliner at festivals and concert halls around the world. He embodies all aspects of the unique melting pot of cultures that is New Orleans, evident from the list of artists with whom he’s performed & recorded including Wynton Marsalis, Eric Clapton, Dee Dee Bridgewater, and Peggy Lee.
Vappie's first self-produced album ‘Papa Don’s New Orleans Jazz Band’ was in 1986 and later three of the members joined Don Vappie’s Creole Jazz Serenaders which went on to record four award winning CDs.
Post Hurricane Katrina he helped form the organisation ‘Bring It On Home’, which funded work for musicians in New Orleans well into the summer of 2006.
Since then Vappie has become more of an independent artist, touring as a guest with bands in different parts of the world, but his most recent Créole themed project ‘Jazz Créole’ has created a stir with their first album ‘The Blue Book of Storyville’ generating a worldwide extremely positive response from the cultural press.
"The banjo has a Jimi Hendrix"
THE TIMES PICAYUNE (US)
"Vappie shows the importance of the banjo in New Orleans music and its often-overlooked relevance in jazz"
"it’s about time someone showed the jazz world what the banjo really can do"
THE OBSERVER (UK)
"Mr Vappie is a born storyteller"
JAZZ DA GAMA (CANADA)
"Don Vappie is not only a solid banjo virtuoso but also a beautiful singer"
JAZZ HOT (FR)