Cosimo Matassa may not be a household name, but you’ve definitely heard his work. The New Orleans Rhythm & Blues Tour takes visitors on a trip through the landmarks of this music pioneer’s life and career, soaking up the sounds that made New Orleans music famous. French Quarter, New Orleans

Cosimo’s Story

Cosimo Matassa was born in New Orleans in 1926. At the age of 18, he dropped out of Tulane University to open a recording studio out of a small room in the back of his parents’ grocery store on Rampart Street. Through three different locations over more than 40 years, he recorded some of the most famous names in R & B and early Rock & Roll, including Little Richard, Ray Charles, Dr. John, Allen Toussaint, Lee Dorsey, and many others. He recorded Fats Domino’s “The Fat Man,” considered by many to be the first Rock & Roll record ever. Cosimo produced an astounding 21 Gold records and more than 250 hit singles over his career and was enshrined in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2012.

The Tour

The New Orleans Rhythm & Blues Tour starts at the corner of St. Philip and Royal, in the legendary French Quarter, and winds its way over the cobblestones to visit all three of Cosimo Matassa’s groundbreaking studios. Along the way, hear stories from the life of this R & B pioneer and the countless musicians he worked with over his genre-defining career. The tour finishes at Matassa Market, the family business on Dauphine St. that Matassa managed after retiring in the 1980s. You can purchase tickets here. The tour takes place at 10AM September 30th, October 28th, and November 25th.

Come walk the streets of New Orleans, and feel the reverberations of the legendary music that echoes throughout this unique and colorful city. Learn more about our walking tours, and purchase your experience with Joieful today!