Michael P. Smith 1955

2009 Jazz & Heritage Festival Ancestor 
Michael P. Smith 1955 (1937-2008) was honored in May 2009, as Jazz & Heritage Festival “Ancestor,” joining legends Danny Barker, Ed Bradley, Clarence “Gatemouth” Brown, Professor Longhair, and Allison Miner. Through his photography he “…captured the heart and soul of New Orleans’ music, culture, and folkways. He documented the physical and social structures that helped shape the unique cultural identity of his native New Orleans.” His many honors include the Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities’ Lifetime Achievement Award, Offbeat Magazine’s Music Photographer of the Year award, the Arts Council of New Orleans’ Mayor’s Arts Award, and a Clarence John Laughlin Lifetime Achievement Award from the New Orleans/Gulf South chapter of the American Society of Media Photographers (ASMP). Smith’s photographs are in the permanent collections of the Bibliothèque National in Paris, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Smithsonian Institution, and in many local museums as well.