Louisiana Music Hall of Fame

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The Louisiana Music Hall of Fame (LMHOF) is an IRS certified 501 (c)(3) non-profit organization[1][2][3] based in the state's capital of Baton Rouge, that seeks to honor and preserve Louisiana's rich music culture and heritage and to further educate its citizens and people worldwide about the state's unique role in contributing to American indigenous and popular music in the 20th century. The motto of the LMHOF is "honoring and preserving Louisiana's greatest renewable natural resource." Its primary outreach currently consists of a growing online "multimedia virtual museum." The organization is also actively developing partnerships and programs for collections, exhibitions, education aids and programs and performances. The LMHOF also seeks to stimulate economic growth by promoting the rejuvenation of the state's music industry. In one specific example, in 2009 LMHOF facilitated pro bono an advertising endorsement agreement between Al "Carnival Time" Johnson and the Louisiana Lottery Corp. which resulted in unprecedented media exposure and royalties to Johnson for use of his image,voice and signature song in a scratch ticket promotion during Mardi Gras season.[4]

Overview of Louisiana's Music[edit]

Among the over 250 artists who have been inducted into the Louisiana Music Hall of Fame to date are Fats Domino, Jerry Lee Lewis, Little Richard, Dave Bartholomew, Elvis Presley, Lloyd Price, Lead Belly, Cosimo Matassa, Louis Armstrong, Mahalia Jackson, Pete Fountain, Buddy Guy, Gov. Jimmie Davis, Ellis Marsalis, Webb Pierce, Dale Hawkins, Louis Prima, Percy Sledge, Irma Thomas, Roy Brown, "Dr. John" Mac Rebennack, Jelly Roll Morton, Allen Toussaint, Al "Carnival Time" Johnson, Bill Conti, Tim McGraw, Trace Adkins, Hunter Hayes, Hank Williams Sr. & Jr., and Clarence "Frogman" Henry. The list of inductees is expected to eventually top 1,000 international luminaries, and the program will expand to include recognition of significant songwriters, support musicians, business icons and regionally famous artists in niche recognition categories. The range of inductees reflects the true diversity of Louisiana's music and its impact on 20th-century music around the world. In the 1920s, Lead Belly and Jelly Roll Morton covered the spectrum arching over blues forms from Shreveport to New Orleans. As eras passed, Louis Armstrong and Louis Prima dominated, Webb Pierce and Gov. Jimmie Davis and country music rolled as Cosimo Matassa recorded "Good Rockin' Tonight" which spread immediately from New Orleans to Shreveport through The Louisiana Hayride, effectively merging the "Hayride" and New Orleans genres into a whole new genre. Mahalia Jackson became the dominant gospel artist and Pete Fountain and Al Hirt jazzed the world. In the 1950s and 1960s, the likes of Fats Domino, Jerry Lee Lewis, Dale Hawkins, Johnny Rivers, Frogman Henry, Robert Parker, Phil Phillips, John Fred & His Playboys, Jimmy Clanton, The Meters, The Dixie Cups, and Jean Knight dominated the charts and record sales. Even Louisiana's writers like Bobby Charles, Allen Toussaint, Dave Bartholomew and Dick Holler drove the industry with their songs. Throughout this global process, Louisiana continued to grow its own unique and original Cajun, Zydeco and "Swamp Pop" musical genres. Few people appreciate that in the early 19th century New Orleans was the site of the first opera house in America and produced one of the country's first major composers, Louis Moreau Gottschalk. From Classical to Rock & Roll, Jazz to Rhythm & Blues, Gospel to Country & Western, Louisiana has been integral to American music history and was at the forefront of the music revolutions of the 20th century.[5]


The Louisiana Music Hall of Fame has launched an innovative LMHOF "Multimedia Virtual Museum" online concept. While physical exhibits are in the development plans, the Internet now provides people anywhere in the world to visit and immerse themselves in the rich culture of Louisiana music. The GALLERIES MUSIQUE[6] allow visitors to spend as much or as little time as they choose, and visit at any time that they choose. Extensive static images, music files and video albums are provided on each inductee. Digital based movable exhibitions are available whenever and wherever scheduled.

The ongoing one-on-one interaction with inductees and future inductees gleans the history and details of the music and artists directly from the artists. Combining and correlating this information with the constant research and discovery of facts and artifacts, and adding the immediate publishing time of the virtual museum, the LMHOF is able to provide the most accurate and current information available anywhere.

In July 2015 the LMHOF launched the "LMHOF Wall Of Fame at BTR," a truly unique double-sided display consisting of 43 Gold records accompanied by unique artwork honoring 50 LMHOF Inductee members and accompanying dual 50 ultra-flat LED screens giving points of the history of the 50 artists in the Baton Rouge Metro Airport public area.

In 2016, the Louisiana Music Hall of Fame has plans to open larger displays featuring more complex Gold record presentations as well as displays featuring artifacts in display of Inductee members in as many as three more locations across the state and a full blown museum display in New Orleans, the home of America's music.[7]

Education and preservation[edit]

Education is the heart of The Louisiana Music Hall of Fame's mission. The organization has plans to create "The History of Louisiana Music" popular/text book as the forerunner for inclusion of Louisiana music history in curricula in the state's Universities and Junior Colleges. These programs include oral histories, narrated biographies, music and recorded live performances. Louisiana Ticket programming will also be available to the world via the LMHOF web site and, beginning in 2016, through HD air and cable channel television broadcasts throughout most of Louisiana.

LMHOF's multimedia virtual museum is rapidly becoming a valuable resource for research on and about Louisiana artists and music. The LMHOF also stores redundant digital files of its entire archives assuring survival of the content. The LMHOF records oral history interviews with inductees and other valued assets wherever possible and records all performances in HD and multi-track digital audio as they archive exclusive and unique performances for historical reference. Many of these oral history pieces can now be found in the virtual museum under the appropriate inductee, as can numerous live performance recordings ever known to exist by many of the inductees. LMHOF has also partnered with the East Baton Rouge Parish Library to be included as a primary link for education and information about Louisiana Music.[8]

Louisiana Ticket and Good Rockin' Tonight[edit]

The Louisiana Music Hall of Fame produces a '"Louisiana Ticket'" video series, first begun in 1999, as both the official museum broadcast series with in-depth looks at Louisiana's artists and music. The state's legends, landmarks and unsung heroes are explored through insightful features, historical articles, news and reviews. Louisiana Ticket will also soon distribute this programming across the world through the LMHOF Web site and through HD broadcasts throughout Louisiana via cable television networks. Currently, The Louisiana Music Hall Of Fame is producing "Good Rockin' Tonight," a series of One-hour talk and Live music shows that now number 14 completed shows! And, more to come...


The Louisiana Music Hall of Fame's institutional history began in 1979 when, with help from current driving force Mike Shepherd, Del Moon, a Baton Rouge, La. print and television entertainment journalist first put forward his intent to create the LMHOF. In 1980, a corporation was formed, nonprofit status obtained and the initial project drive began. After several years, Moon back shelved the full-time pursuit of the project, having fought a severe economic recession and having received only cursory cooperation from State and local government and funding entities. Moon allowed the corporation to be dissolved and public work diminished around 1997.[9]

Over the years, Moon and Shepherd continued to conceive a better approach from another State while an early adviser in Louisiana continued on with the project's development and archival activities.

For a time in the nineties and early 2000s, a non-certified, non-recognized group, out of Lafayette, LA, conducted business using variations of the name, and "inducted" well over a thousand individuals without even keeping a list of those "inductees." That issue is discussed on the LMHOF Official web site in the "HISTORY" section. All inductees of The Louisiana Music Hall of Fame are included in the list below. The "non-certified" inductees from that time and dubious effort, are considered to have never been inducted and do not appear on the web site. Even though The Louisiana Music Hall of Fame knows there are well over a thousand individuals who they refer to as "non-certified" and knows who many of them are, the LMHOF has chosen not to induct these artists in any "wholesale" manner.

In 2005, after several years of pre-development and archival effort, that early adviser, a music industry veteran, Mike Shepherd of Baton Rouge La., took up the gauntlet, establishing a new corporation with IRS 501c3 certification, re-acquired use of The Louisiana Music Hall Of Fame name from Louisiana's Secretary Of State (whose predecessor had arguably registered the name to himself in 2004 despite over 20 years of usage at that time) and immediately contacted Moon for continued support and active participation. He got it. Shepherd subsequently reacquired clear registration of the trade name "The Louisiana Music Hall Of Fame" from the newly elected and sitting Louisiana Secretary of State Tom Schedler in early 2011.

The new Louisiana Music Hall Of Fame blueprint envisions future public exhibits but immediately took advantage of the Internet by launching a unique multimedia "virtual museum" from a Web site and began honoring Louisiana musicians who have made significant contributions to the music industry. With so much to work on, the decision was made to reach out to the "living legends" and surviving family first in an induction plan rather than engage in a time-consuming thematic/historical approach. As Hurricane Katrina ripped New Orleans, it quickly became apparent that digital was the only way to go. An incredible amount of Louisiana's music history washed away overnight. With the cooperation of Governors Kathleen Blanco and Bobby Jindal, the project has quickly become a prototype for the digital age of museums. That web site has now been visited by over 2.35 Million music fans across the world!

Plans continue for brick and mortar facilities throughout the State, along with numerous projects designed to aid in heightened global awareness of Louisiana's artists and music, as well as developmental tools and facilities to assist in the resurgence in Louisiana's classic music genres.

Over 100 fundraising induction concerts have been staged to date, including "Louisiana's Greatest Hits-Live" held in Baton Rouge on October 27, 2007[10][11] and the Louisiana Music Homecoming on May 16, 2010.

In the 2010 Session of the Louisiana Legislature, by unanimous vote of both the State Senate and State House of Representatives on SCR 112, The Louisiana Music Hall Of Fame, was commended for its work and further declared as "the official honors and recognition organization and information resource for and about Louisiana's music, musicians and musical heritage," thus becoming the first ever Official Louisiana Music Hall Of Fame after thirty years. On January 27, 2014, The Louisiana Music Hall Of Fame web site reached the 1,000,000 visit plateau and in October 2015 reached 2.35 Million visits.


Name and Date Inducted

Songwriters Annex Members[edit]

Performers Stage Members[edit]

Studio Room Members[edit]

Regional Hall of Fame Members[edit]

Baton Rouge
New Orleans
North Louisiana

LMHOF Future Famers Members[edit]

LMHOF Special Members[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ [1]
  2. ^ "IRS Tax Exempt Status Approved!!". Louisiana Music Hall of Fame. 2007-12-30. Retrieved 2016-08-09.
  3. ^ "The Louisiana Music Hall Of Fame - CERTIFIED". Louisiana Music Hall of Fame. Retrieved 25 February 2017.
  4. ^ "Louisiana Music Hall Of Fame + LA Lottery + Al "Carnival Time" Johnson = ad campaign". Blog.nola.com. 2009-01-27. Retrieved 2016-08-09.
  5. ^ Horn, David (2005). Continuum Encyclopedia of Popular Music of the World. International Publishing Group Ltd. pp. 252–271. ISBN 9780826474360.
  6. ^ "Louisiana Music Hall of Fame". Louisiana Music Hall of Fame. Retrieved 2016-08-09.
  7. ^ Horn, David (2005). Continuum Encyclopedia of Popular Music of the World. International Publishing Group Ltd. pp. 252–271. ISBN 9780826474360.
  8. ^ [2][dead link]
  9. ^ Lee, Clifton (2009). "What Hall?". Offbeat. 22: 12 – via EBSCOhost.
  10. ^ "WBRZ-TV Channel 2 Baton Rouge, LA". Media.swagit.com. Retrieved 2016-08-09.
  11. ^ [3][dead link]

External links[edit]