"Bayou Maharajah: The Tragic Genius of James Booker" explores the life, times and music of piano legend James Booker, who Dr. John described as "the best black, gay, one-eyed junkie piano genius New Orleans has ever produced." Booker was an unparalleled musician whose eccentricities and showmanship belied a life of struggle and isolation. Triply-marginalized by his race, sexuality, and physical disability, he still managed to excel as a musician in New Orleans and Europe in the turbulent 1960-70s, fusing secular, sacred, pop and classical traditions in breathtaking new ways. A brilliant stylist of soaring imagination, Booker personified the agony of genius in a time of paradigmatic change.
Bayou Maharajah: The Tragic Genius of James Booker
Director: Lily Keber
Producer: Lily Keber, Nathaniel Kohn
Cinematographer: David White
Editor: Tim Watson
Sound Designer: Eric Laws
Additional Credits: Associate Producer: Ted Moree, Associate Producer: Amy Rodrigue, Associate Producer: Don Williams, Additional Editing: Aimee Toledano
Principal Cast: Harry Connick Jr., Hugh Laurie, Dr. John, Allen Toussaint, Irma Thomas, Charles Neville, Douglas Brinkley
Lily Keber lives and works in New Orleans. Her other video work has dealt with the siege of Gaza, rebuilding efforts in New Orleans, and media literacy. Her short film "Hutto: America's Family Prison" focused on Bush’s policy of family detention. Lily is co-founder of New Orleans Video Voices, a woman-led media collective.
Sales Agent: Steven Beer
Public Film Contact
Mairzy Doats Productions