New Orleans R&B
Long a hotbed of jazz, the crescent city also played a big part in giving birth to rock 'n' roll with what's come to be known as New Orleans R&B. Taking cues from boogie-woogie pianist Professor Longhair, Fats Domino put the sound on the map with his 1955 hit "Ain't That A Shame." Pianist-writer-arranger Allen Toussaint -- a sort of Barry Gordy of the New Orleans scene -- played a major part in the music's evolution throughout the '60s, producing Lee Dorsey's "Workin' In A Coalmine" and later funk pioneers the Meters. Other Toussaint associates like the Neville Brothers and Longhair-inspired pianist Dr. John have continued the tradition, fusing elements of reggae, rock, and psychedelia with the strutting second-line rhythms that lie at the heart of this style.