Meet The Performers

Visiting Artist

Matt Perrine

Called a "virtuoso sousaphone player" by Downbeat Magazine, Matt has been seen at nearly every major jazz festival in the US and Europe. In recent years. Matt and his horn have recorded and/or shared the stage with people like Eric Clapton, Bill Kreutzman, Jerry Douglas, Willie Nelson, Bonnie Raitt, OK-Go, The Indigo Girls, Dr. John, Ani DiFranco, Lew Soloff, Florence and the Machine, Better Than Ezra, and Bruce Hornsby. He has also lent his unique musical voice to some of New Orleans more high-profile and visionary local musical projects: most recently Bonerama, the Tin Men, Fatien Ensemble, Neslort and the Danza Quartet. He is co-founder of one of the city's premier brass bands, the New Orleans Nightcrawlers, and was the recipient of Offbeat Magazine's award for best tuba player for 2004, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010.

In 2007, Matt released his first solo record, Sunflower City, a celebration of the connection between New Orleans music and the music of the Caribbean. Featuring a who's-who of New Orleans finest musicians, it received a Big Easy Award from Gambit Weekly in the category of "Mixed Bag", and was nominated for Album of the Year and Best Traditional Jazz Album by Offbeat Magazine. Matt's second solo release, Bayou Road Suite, was released by Threadhead Records in spring of 2010 and is being sold to an international fan base.

In fall of 2010, Matt was charged with the challenging and rewarding role of arranger for a new theatrical musical. "Nine Lives", the best-selling post-Katrina love letter to New Orleans by New York Times writer, Dan Baum, was chosen for a $50,000 grant from Pepsi for the recording of a musical adaptation composed by Colman deKay and former Cowboy Mouth guitarist, Paul Sanchez. Matt's vocal and orchestral arrangements of the 36 song score were recorded by a cast of local and national music and theatrical luminaries; Irma Thomas, Harry Shearer, Kevin Griffin, Michael Cerveris, Wendell Pierce, John Boutte, Lillian Boutte, Tricia "Sista Teedy" Boutte, Michelle Shocked, Alex McMurray, Allen Toussaint, George Porter Jr., Johnny Vidacovich, Shamarr Allen, and the To Be Continued Brass Band and nearly 100 others collaborated to document this landmark marriage of theater and New Orleans music with Matt functioning as musical director. His compositions have been featured on HBO's hit series "Treme", -on which Matt had a speaking role as himself- and as the theme music for NPR's syndicated program, The Reading Life. In 2008 he was commissioned to write the theme song for Comic Relief 3 which was filmed in Las Vegas with hosts Whoopie Goldberg, Robin Williams and Billy Crystal raising funds for Hurricane Katrina relief. His arrangements have been commissioned by Broadway luminary Michael Cerveris (Sweeney Todd, Evita, Tony Winner-Assassins) and groups like the Boston Pops and the Dukes of Dixieland.

Matt began his career as a music educator at the Sacramento Traditional Jazz Camp and has since taught theory, music history and performance in master classes, and clinics domestically and abroad at St Bart's Public School, Aurhus Rhytmik Conservatory and New Orleans Traditional Jazz Camp. He functioned as adjunct professor at Copenhagen's Rhythmik Conservatory as part of a New Orleans Music Summit and returned to represent New Orleans in the World Music Summit. Matt is currently a member of the UNO Jazz Program faculty under the direction of Elis Marsalis and instructs the UNO Traditional Jazz Combo and the UNO Brass Band. He is presently developing a New Orleans Tuba method book for secondary school classroom use.

Today Matt plays sousaphone with the New Orleans based band, the Tin Men, with songwriter/ guitarist/vocalist Alex McMurray and local phenom "Washboard Chaz" Leary. The Tin Men's first release, "Supergreat Music for Modern Lovers", was nominated by the Big Easy Awards committee for Album of the Year. He also continues to play in the New Orleans Nightcrawlers, Aurora Nealand's Royal Roses, Paul Sanchez and the Rolling Road Show and many other local bands. Nationally and internationally, Matt can be seen with the Tin men, Jon Cleary's philthy phew, Ray Anderson's Pocket Brass Band, John Ellis' Doublewide, Debbie Davis, the Royal Roses, and many others. In addition, he is booking his Sunflower City Trio and the Sunflower City Jazz Band at local clubs and festivals.

Matt lives in the Treme neighborhood of New Orleans with his wife, Debbie, his sons, Ben and Henry, and Daisy Mae and Cosimo, the wonder-pups.

This biography is based on information provided by the artist, ensemble or representatives thereof and may only be as current as the artist’s or ensemble’s most recent performance at Symphony Center.