“Lil Louie” Cottrell is the great-grandson of drummer Louis “Old Man” Cottrell, and grandson of clarinetist Louis “Prez” Cottrell. Lil Louie essentially grew up on stage at the feet of his famed grandfather, often photographed sitting in between the legs of Louis, Jr. The younger Cottrell began his professional career with the Young Olympia Brass Band under the tutelage of Milton Batiste of Dejean’s Olympia Brass Band. “Lil Louie” then joined the Young Tuxedo Brass Band, a band both elder Cottrells paraded with. Louis Cottrell would later join Dr. Michael White’s Original Liberty Jazz Band, in which he first recorded, “New Year’s Eve Live At The Village Van Guard,” with special guest, Wynton Marsalis.
Cottrell played with various jazz ensembles throughout New Orleans in addition to leading his own band, the Original Creole Jazz Band. Mr. Cottrell performed with many of the veterans of his grandfather’s day including the venerable Danny Barker, Cottrell’s cousins, Placide and Gerald Adams, Teddy Riley, Wendell Eugene and Walter Lewis.