This collection consists of a transcription of an oral history interview with jazz musician and producer Delfeayo Marsalis by Mary Ellison, which formed the basis of her article in Popular Music and Society "Subverting Commodification: Delfeayo Marsalis and Jazz." Also included is a short transcription of an interview Ellison conducted with Ellis Marsalis Jr.
Delfeayo Marsalis discusses his family's dynamics, including comparisons of his older brothers in terms of musical styles and demeanor. He talks about the development of his musical aesthetic and the lack of influence of New Orleans musicians on his personal style. He details how his musical style and that of his musician brothers has evolved through the years. He explains his techniques as a producer and his preference for "clean" trombone playing, as well as playing with drummer Elvin Jones. He mentions how David Duke is portrayed instrumentally in his album Pontius Pilate's Decision. Delfeayo Marsalis also discusses the economics of African American-owned businesses and their importance for improving community outlook. Marsalis also describes the African versus European origins of American music. Other topics include his education at the New Orleans Center for Creative Arts and the Berklee College of Music.
In a short interview with Ellis Marsalis Jr. at Snug Harbor in New Orleans, the senior Marsalis discusses how he began as a dual saxophone and piano player until he heard Nat Perillat playing tenor sax and then he "put the saxophone in the case -- and that was the end of that." He talks about the lack of political overtones in his music, as well as the uniqueness of his position as an instructor of jazz music at the New Orleans Center for Creative Arts. In discussing the confluence of cultures and economic conditions that led to the development of the jazz aesthetic in New Orleans, Marsalis acknowledges that the discussion of economic conditions is usually ignored by jazz historians.