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Henry Roeland "Professor Longhair" Byrd
Birth: Dec. 19, 1918
Bogalusa
Washington Parish
Louisiana, USA
Death: Jan. 30, 1980
New Orleans
Orleans Parish
Louisiana, USA

Singer, Pianist, Rock and Roll Pioneer. Henry Roeland Byrd was born in Bogalusa, Louisiana. In his teens, he began dancing on Bourbon Street in New Orleans for tips. Thereafter, he found a broken piano abandoned in an alley. He took it home and fiddled around with it until it played well enough for him to get by. Later, while a member of the Civilian Conservation Corps, he discovered that he could avoid working by playing the piano for his co-workers. In his late 20s, he took the stage at the Caldonia Club while the regular band was on a break. An instant hit, he was hired. He and the members of the band all had long hair and were thereafter referred to as "Professor Longhair and the Four Hairs." He recorded and toured for a decade, but life on the road took its toll on his health. He remained in New Orleans for the next 15 years, performing and recording intermittently. This, in turn, took its toll on his income, and he took various jobs to supplement it. His career slowly recovered in the 1970s when he appeared at several noted jazz festivals worldwide. Unfortunately, the traveling again was too much for him. Along with a group of fans and promoters in New Orleans, in 1977 he purchased a warehouse and converted it into a nightclub called Tipitina's, named after one of his songs. It was conveniently located close to his home. Tipitina's still operates as a jazz club today and houses a collection of Professor Longhair memorabilia. (bio by: countedx58) 
 
Burial:
Mount Olivet Cemetery and Mausoleum
New Orleans
Orleans Parish
Louisiana, USA
 
Maintained by: Find A Grave
Originally Created by: Find A Grave
Record added: Jan 01, 2001
Find A Grave Memorial# 2703
Henry Roeland Professor Longhair Byrd
Added by: Ron Moody
 
Henry Roeland Professor Longhair Byrd
Added by: Penfold
 
Henry Roeland Professor Longhair Byrd
Added by: Jerry Gowins Jr.
 
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- DENA ANN
 Added: Apr. 18, 2014

- DENA ANN
 Added: Jan. 30, 2014

- Tom A. Hawk
 Added: Dec. 19, 2013
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