March to the Beat of a Better Tomorrow


Derrick Tabb

Musician, Founder & Artistic Director, Roots of Music

As a life-long resident of New Orleans, Derrick Tabb fully understands the challenges inner city youth face. After traveling the world as a member of the Rebirth Brass Band, Derrick returned home to make an impact, to empower the city’s youth through music and mentorship.

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Finding the Notes of Empowerment

Derrick Tabb is empowering youth for low-income households through music education and mentorship. His nonprofit organization, The Roots of Music, is taking youth off the streets and changing lives around the Crescent City all while celebrating the legacy of Louisiana culture.


Our Impact Starts Now

The culture and sounds of Louisiana are known across the world. But a decline in state-funded music programs gives way to the nation’s largest at-risk youth population, in a state that continually ranks among the highest for crime and criminal activity. The well-being of our future and continuation of our culture lies in the hands of our young people. A mission that Derrick Tabb is very passionate about, “Roots is a program for the city, for the kids of the city. Without a program like this we will lose our sound. If we don’t provide them an outlet, we not only risk losing our music, but we risk losing our youth.”

Hours of music education and academic tutoring provided per year by Roots of Music
Instruments available for children to use and play through Roots of Music
Louisiana’s rank for the most at-risk youths in the country
Nutritious meals provided to children who would otherwise go hungry by Roots of Music

Transforming Lives through Music

Inspired by the impact his junior high band instructor had on his life, Derrick founded The Roots of Music, an after-school nonprofit organization that empowers the at-risk youth of New Orleans through music education, academic support, and mentorship. Five days a week, 12 months a year, the program provides music education and other academic tutoring to students ages nine to 14, all while preserving the unique musical and cultural heritage of the city.  

Get to know

Derrick Tabb

What do you consider your greatest achievement as it relates to your work as a Champion of Louisiana?

I’m a Grammy award winner, but the opportunity to share the music of the city and the culture of Louisiana with people across the world is the real achievement.

What is your favorite place in Louisiana?

It’s got to be New Orleans! I’m very proud of where I’m from. There’s no place like home and no place like here.

What is one thing you want all Louisiana citizens to know?

It is critically important and necessary to invest in our children and our youth. They are the future and without sharing our culture and investing in them, we risk losing the traditions we love.

What is your favorite thing about Louisiana?

The culture

Making an Impact in

New Orleans

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