NEW ORLEANS – A jazz club that’s lived through generations of musicians has reopened after closing its doors two years ago.
Over the past 16 years, some of the world’s greatest musicians have graced the stage at Sweet Lorraine’s Jazz Club on St. Claude Avenue. However, in 2012 Hurricane Isaac devastated the club, and water and roof damage forced owner Paul Sylvester to close up shop.
Since the 1920s, Sylvester’s family has been a part of New Orleans music entertainment.
“On my mother’s, side my grandmother had a place, my mother had a place and then I took over from her. On my daddy’s side, my great uncle had a place, my daddy had a place and here I am again,” Sylvester said.
For the last two years, all you could hear near the club was construction. That was until Monday when the city cut the ribbon on the $41 million project, and streetcars began running.
“Just as I was recovering from [Isaac], they started the streetcar line,” Sylvester said.
The 1.6-mile track passes right in front of the historic jazz club, and now that the streetcar is open for business, so will be Sweet Lorraine’s. Sylvester is hoping the streetcar carries more than just passengers to his front door.
“For a long time, for the past 13 or 14 years, I was the lone ranger in this area,” said Sylvester.
He’s hoping new businesses and opportunity will come with the new tracks, keeping Sweet Lorraine’s around for generations to come.