Cyril Neville is a New Orleans percussionist and vocalist who first came to prominence as a member of his brother Art Neville's band The Meters. He joined Art in the Neville Brothers band upon the dissolution of the Meters. He has appeared on recordings by Bob Dylan, Robbie Robertson, Edie Brickell, Willie Nelson, & Dr. John among others. He's toured or been a member in The Soul Machine, The Endangered Species Band, The Uptown Allstars, Tribe 13 Galactic, Royal Southern Brotherhood just to name a few and I'm sure I'm leaving some out. This man is known as the Uptown Ruler so I stewed on this one for a while before starting. I could not get in person photos of him at first so I scoured the internet for photos of close ups of his face and jewelry. Later I happened to run into him at the 2nd annual Fessy awards and I was able to get some shots of this killer jacket & close up face shots. I decided to fashion his throne of carved wood and fine Corinthian leather. I had to think about the background but then it came to me. I "beaded" the back of the chair & added the blue feathers as a nod to Cyril's Mardi Gras Indian associations but feathers are also signs from the ancestors. The color blue symbolizes trust, loyalty, wisdom, confidence, intelligence, faith, truth, & heaven. I think this painting is a little bit of heaven. This is my portrait of the Uptown Ruler, Cyril Neville.
NOTE: This painting is currently on display in the Ogden Museum as part of Louisiana Contemporary 2020. The work is on loan to the museum until the show is closed in February 2021. This painting cannot be shipped or delivered until the show has closed and the painting is again in the artist's possession.