Prominent Figures in the Carrollton Cemeteries: Bernard Walter Lomax

Bernard Walter Lomax was a Mardi Gras Indian who lived from 1927-1955. In 1950 he composed "Shallow Water," a song that is still popular with Mardi Gras Indians many years after his death. The words "Shallow Water" are repeated to form the chorus of the song by the same name. It is easily one of the most recognizable songs that the Mardi Gras Indians sing today.

Mr. Donald Harrison, Sr., Big Chief of the Guardians of the Flame, stated in a 1991 interview that:

"My earliest influence was Bernard Lomax, a gentlemen that introduced the song "Shallow Water." His mother is still alive. She lives Uptown. She's elderly—she's just like a second mother to me. When I started masking in 1949, I was influenced mainly by Bernard Lomax."

Source:

"If You Don't Like What The Big Chief Say . . . .An Interview with Mr. Donald Harrison, Sr., Big Chief of the Guardians of the Flame." Interviewed by John Clark and Melissa San Roman. Mesechabe: The Journal of Surre(gion)alism
8 (Spring 1991).

Images

Grave of Bernard Lomax

Grave of Bernard Lomax

Image Courtesy of Al Kennedy View File Details Page

Cite this Page:

Al Kennedy and Sarah Hartje, “Prominent Figures in the Carrollton Cemeteries: Bernard Walter Lomax,” New Orleans Historical, accessed April 24, 2017, http://neworleanshistorical.org/items/show/673.
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