In the 1960s famed Dixieland jazz clarinetist Pete Fountain always closed his New Orleans club around the Independence Day holiday in order to celebrate his birthday on July 3. He and his wife, Beverly Lang Fountain, are shown here on one such excursion, outside the Broadwater Beach Hotel in Biloxi. The couple married in October 1951. Their son, Kevin Fountain, who submitted the photo, says he believes it was taken around 1965.
Fountain was first mentioned in The Times-Picayune on March 4, 1948, when police reported the theft of two of his instruments, worth $250, from Warren Easton High School.
The following February his photo was featured in a Werlein's ad congratulating his Junior Dixie Land Jamboree Band for winning on the Horace Heidt Youth Opportunity Program, a national radio talent show which was a precursor to American Idol.
John Kelly, The Times-Picayune Les Causeries du Lundi elected officers for the 1962-63 season Monday (May 14) at a gathering at Gallier Hall. Installed for the coming year are (from left, seated): Mrs. Frank B. Delery, president; Mrs. Lilian Lewis, first vice-president; and Miss Gladys Anne Renshaw, second vice-president; (standing) Miss Adele Drouet, reception chairman; Mrs. Richard Massie Martin, treasurer; and Mrs. Paul Perret, program chairman. May 16, 1962
After evacuating for Hurricane Katrina, Fountain is back living in New Orleans, but his son reports he has been in East Jefferson General Hospital for the past three weeks. All his fans wish him well today on his 81st birthday.
John Kelly can be reached a firstname.lastname@example.org.