This is a big year for New Orleans, which is celebrating the tricentennial of its founding in 1718. It’s also turning out to be an important year for the city’s AFM local. Local 174-496 (New Orleans, LA) is celebrating the 50th anniversary of its merger in 1968, as well as the grand opening of its new home, coined Tricentennial Hall. To top it all off, in April, Local 174-496 President “Deacon” John Moore was honored before the New Orleans City Council in recognition of his more than 60 years in the music business.
New Union Hall
Members in good standing can use the local’s new rehearsal, meeting, and recording hall for free during business hours. Simply contact the local to make a reservation. The studio-quality 30-foot by 21-foot space is sound-proof and equipped with a Kawai acoustic piano, Kurzweil PC88 electric piano, amplifier, full Mapex drum kit, PA system, mixing board, and more. A waiting area features historic photos of musicians, including those who have been featured in the International Musician.
Honoring One of Their Own
It was standing room only in the New Orleans City Council Chambers when City Councilmember Susan Guidry introduced “Deacon” John Moore at an April meeting. The council recognized Moore’s many years of influence on the New Orleans music scene. True to form, Moore wowed the room when he sang Nat King Cole’s “For All We Know.”
“I have had a blessed career in show business, despite the fact that I’ve never toured on the road, never played in foreign countries, didn’t write or record any hit songs, no Grammy’s, never played any international festivals—beside the New Orleans Jazz Festival,” says Moore, remarking that he’s never had to take a “day job” and thanking all those who supported him over the years.
Moore has performed at the White House, for the inaugurations of governors and mayors, and at many private events marking family and community celebrations. He’s performed at every New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival since it was founded 49 years ago. He has been an AFM member since 1958 and president of his local for 12 years.
New Orleans Mayor-Elect and then-Councilmember LaToya Cantrell thanked Moore for his advocacy. “You were very instrumental in ensuring the protection of our musicians was top priority as related to second-hand smoke and making sure New Orleans was a smoke-free environment,” she said. Councilman Jared Brossett thanked Moore for his decades of service and mentorship in the music industry.