John Boutte


On Sundays, as the red beans were soaking for Monday’s dinner, John Boutte was awakened by the sounds of his New Orleans neighborhood. Voices carried over the fence from the church behind his home in the Seventh Ward, the home where he grew up, where most of his Creole family still lives and sings. Past the front yard, second-line parades rolled by, matching the madness of Carnival season and the transcendent joy of the jazz funeral. This roux of influences created John Boutte, and serves him to this day.

Often referred to as The Voice of New Orleans, John Boutte is a singer with grit, soul, passion and beauty. His sound is one of the most beloved in New Orleans.

John became known to the World when his song became the theme song for the very popular post-Katrina HBO TV show about New Orleans musicians called Treme.

Sometimes you can hear him singing, sometimes whistling, or sometimes you can hear him faintly from the street as he sits at his piano singing a Korean lullaby. John’s job is to sing — to sing jazz, to sing it with such style and grace that no one ever mistakes him for anything other than a master. John is one of those remarkable cases where the art arises from the true heart. To know John is to hold onto the coattails of a butterfly. To hear him sing is to feel a brief touch of the wing.


Scroll to Top