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Morgan Monsters of NC Jazz

Grinning from ear to ear

Morgan Monsters

Muralist. Artist. Monster.

Brooklyn-based artist Kevin Lyons spent a week in Raleigh, working ‘round the clock on a new mural.

His canvas? The side of Trophy Pizza on Morgan Street. 

His inspiration? North Carolina’s rich history of hip hop and Jazz.

Legendary locals

Director Joshua Steadman captured Lyons in his element (and in constant rain), ducking in and out of a tarp while layering color and history on the wall. Soon North Carolina Jazz Legends from Thelonious Monk and Betty Davis to Rhapsody and King Mez were featured in Lyons’ distinct Monster style. 

Red, White and Blue Devils

Even the mural’s color stayed true to NC. As he told Raleigh Magazine, it was painted “in regional colors: Duke and Tarheel blues, Wolfpack red, even Shaw University’s distinctive burgundy.”

I'm a big jazz record collector and North Carolina is home to so many great jazz musicians.

Kevin Lyons

A few of the many giants of North Carolina jazz:

Betty Davis, Rhapsody, 9th Wonder

Thelonious Monk, John Coltrane, Max Roach

Kooley High, Little Brother, Nina Simone

J. Cole, King Mez, Petey Pablo

Lou Donaldson, Tawl Ross, Percy Heath

Monsters of NC Jazz

  • 8 Trophy pizzas

  • 2 inches of rain

  • 3 blue tarps

  • 20 cans of paint

  • 1 run of Trophy’s "Morgan Monsters" New England IPA

  • 1 epic block party

Got me smiling

Got me smiling

Out of the Morgan Monsters of NC Jazz brand came a short run of themed Trophy brews, t-shirts and, most importantly, a block party with DJs and breakdancers to celebrate. Special thanks to Kooley High for the musical track, Grinning.

Check out this Spotify playlist to listen to the NC musicians represented on the wall.

It was a communal type of project.

Credits

  • Director, DP

    Joshua Steadman

  • Producer

    Jedidiah Gant

  • Additional Camera

    Tony Cope

  • Editor

    Jerry Oliver

  • Music

    Kooley High ft. Rapsody

  • Artist Assistants

    Jenny Smith, Noelle Martinez

Raleigh Murals Project

Mez - Morris

Che Apalache - The Dreamer