Narvin Kimball, the Dean of Dixieland Jazz

Narvin Kimball died this week at 96. He was the last founding member of The New Orleans Preservation Hall Jazz Band.

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He made his first banjo out of a cigar box, a stick and some string. Today we play his music in remembrance.

(Soundbite of music)

ELLIOTT: Narvin Kimball, the last founding member of the New Orleans Preservation Hall Jazz Band, died yesterday at age 97.

(Soundbite of song)

Mr. NARVIN KIMBALL (Musician): (Singing) I ain't got nobody and there's nobody, nobody cares for me.

ELLIOTT: He was known for his vocals and for the way he worked that banjo. His professional career began in the 1920's playing on Mississippi riverboats. He formed his own band, Narvin Kimball's Gentlemen of Jazz, and he eventually found his way to the steps of Preservation Hall.

(Soundbite of song)

Mr. KIMBALL: (Singing) Please take a dance with me.

ELLIOTT: For more than 40 years, the musicians of the Preservation Hall Jazz Band have served as ambassadors and guardians of New Orleans jazz.

(Soundbite of song)

Mr. KIMBALL: (Singing) Please, please, my baby, won't you be mine. Now, I ain't got nobody and there's nobody, nobody cares for me.

ELLIOTT: Narvin Kimball did have somebody to care for him in the end. He died at his daughter's home in South Carolina where he and his wife have been living since Hurricane Katrina.

(Soundbite of song)

Mr. KIMBALL: (Singing) I sing a sweet love song all the time. Please, please, my baby, won't you be mine. Now I ain't got nobody...

ELLIOTT: That's ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Debbie Elliott.

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