The Roots of Music is honored to be a 2024 recipient of The Lewis Prize for Music

Natalie Holderbaum

Natalie Holderbaum originally hailing from New Jersey, moved to New Orleans in 2017. She is a 2021 Tulane graduate with a degree in Communications and Film Studies, and a minor […]

Dr. Shawnell Ware

Born and raised in the Gentilly area of New Orleans, Louisiana, Dr. Shawnell Ware completed high school at St. Mary’s Academy. She then went on to receive a Bachelors of […]

Veronique Dorsey

Veronique was initially brought onto our team in 2023, and started with enthusiasm, as she knew just how important the program was at the time. She is an eleven year […]

Lawrence Rawlins Sr.

A New Orleans native with more than 25 years of experience as a music educator, Mr. Rawlins currently serves as Director of Bands at Lake Forest Charter Blue Ribbon School.. […]

Erica Spruille

Erica Spruille is a passionate advocate for community programming with over 10 years of experience in fundraising and donor management. A born and raised NOLA native, her post-Katrina transition from […]

Ed Johnson

Edward Lee Johnson Sr. was born to the parents of Elmer Lee Johnson and Gwendolyn R. Johnson (Willis). At the age of eight he received his first drumming job where […]

Bryant Watson

As soon as Bryant Watson could reach, he played his father’s sparkly orange drum kit in a Canton, Ohio basement. Surrounded by a family of musicians, Watson grew up listening […]

Shoan Ruffin

For over twenty years as a percussion instructor, Mr. Shoan Ruffin has made an impact in the lives of countless students in the New Orleans area and beyond. Though most […]