New Orleans-based photographer Michael P. Smith (1937-2008) documented the culture of his city, and one of his most popular subjects was the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival.
He was at the festival’s first foray in 1970 to capture Mahalia Jackson’s return to the city, and through the years he created memorable images of local legends and national treasures, like Irma Thomas, Allen Toussaint, Fats Domino, Aretha Franklin, Stevie Wonder and B.B. King.
Before his death, Smith entrusted his archive to The Historic New Orleans Collection, which has made reproductions of his work available online through RequestAPrint.
– Teresa Devlin, The Historic New Orleans Collection