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'Irma: My Life In Music' documentary to air on PBS stations in February

Irma Thomas
WLAE-TV and LAE Productions
“The Soul Queen of New Orleans – A Concert Documentary Film” 2021
Irma Thomas

Beginning this month and running throughout the spring, PBS stations across the country will broadcast “Irma: My Life in Music,” a new documentary about the life and career of Grammy Award-winning artist Irma Thomas.

Beloved New Orleans singer Irma Thomas will turn 81 on Feb. 18.

The Louisiana native recorded her first single, “Don’t Mess With My Man,” in 1959. Throughout the 1960s and 1970s, Thomas recorded songs written for her by pianist Allen Toussaint and worked all over the Gulf Coast. She opened a music club, The Lion's Den, with her husband in the 1980s.

Irma Thomas - Time is On My Side (Jools' Annual Hootenanny 2005)

Thomas received Grammy nominations in 1991 and 1999, and a Grammy Award for Best Contemporary Blues Album in 2007 for her album "After the Rain." She performed in Seattle in 2010.

The 90-minute program "Irma: My Life In Music" includes an extensive interview with Thomas and commentary from many of her colleagues.

Highlights include archival performances and interview footage from decades of live shows filmed by Michael Murphy Productions at The New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival.

Check your local PBS station listings for "Irma: My Life In Music." The documentary will also be shown on the World Channel on Feb. 25 and 26.

Listen for Irma Thomas on KNKX's award-winning All Blues program, hosted by John Kessler, on Saturdays and Sundays from 6 p.m. until midnight.

Originally from Detroit, Robin Lloyd has been presenting jazz, blues and Latin jazz on public radio for nearly 40 years. She's a member of the Jazz Education Network and the Jazz Journalists Association.