Lily Keber highlights the life of legendary New Orleans musician James Booker in her film, Bayou Maharajah, The Tragic Genius of James Booker. This week on U Look Hungry, Helen Hollyman sits down with Lily in the Bywater neighborhood of New Orleans to talk about the life of the enigmatic pianist. Hear why James Booker is sucha polarizing figure in New Orleans history. Hear about some of Booker’s signature quirks, and why a James Booker show was always a spectacle. Find out how Booker’s addictions and mental illness affected his work, and his reputation during his life. Why did Lily want to make a film about Booker, and has she figured out his mystery? Tune in and find out on this week’s installment of U Look Hungry! Thanks to our sponsor, White Oak Pastures.
“James Booker was so many things at once, just like his music.” [5:05]
“The mark of the ultimate musician is if they can make something so difficult sound so smooth.” [13:00]
— Lily Keber on U Look Hungry