Saxophonist Reggie Houston relocated from New Orleans to Portland in 2004, not long before many of his Crescent City bandmates were forced to evacuate by Hurricane Katrina. Since relocating to Portland, Reggie has led and appeared in a number of groups who’ve appeared over the years at the Festival (Crescent City Connection, the Manimals, Northwest Tribute to Ray Charles, Charmaine Neville Band, Box of Chocolates), and the jazz ensemble with which he will appear on this year on the Festival’s Front Porch Stage, Reggie Houston’s B’ Swingsters, which includes: Mike Elson, keyboards; Keith Brush, acoustic bass; Russ Miller, guitar; Ji Tanzer, drums; and Reggie Houston, tenor and soprano saxophones, and vocals. The group will provide the swinging grooves for a July 4 jazz dance competition at the Front Porch Stage.
Before moving to Portland, the New Orleans native was a mainstay in that city’s music scene, leading vocalist Charmaine Neville’s band, and touring for some 22 years with the legendary Fats Domino. Reggie began his musical journey with Batiste family band, the Gladiators. Though his roots are in New Orleans, Reggie’s knowledge and appreciation of musical styles span the globe. Says Reggie: “Continue to learn, grow, spread peace, love, understanding and joy through music.”