You unquestionably love the music, food and spirit of New Orleans, but prefer a rural area … oh, what to do? Musician Ben Redwine and his artist wife, Leslie Redwine, believe they found the perfect compromise. The couple moved to Covington, Louisiana in Tammany Parish - which offers a quaint country location and is only 40 miles from downtown New Orleans! Find out more about the laidback lifestyle of Louisiana in St. Tammany Parish on Episode 104 of Retire There with Gil & Gene.
For Ben Redwine’s performances
View Leslie Redwine’s art
Ben Redwine was born and raised in Del City, Oklahoma. He earned a bachelor's degree in music education from University of Oklahoma, a masters in music from Louisiana State University and a doctorate of musical arts from The Catholic University of America in Washington, DC. GIL: which by the way has one of the best ethics and compliance programs and websites in all of higher ed - well, when I was practicing law.
Ben began his career with the US Army Band, in Atlanta, Georgia, then won the audition with the US Naval Academy Band in Annapolis, Maryland. Ben retired from the Navy and thereafter, served on the faculty at The Catholic University of America teaching clarinet and music education for five years. The couple then moved to Louisiana, where he taught music for a year at Southern University in Baton Rouge. Today he is solely performing in classical and jazz genres. He’s a regular performer with the Louisiana Philharmonic and Baton Rouge Symphony Orchestras. He also created a popular traditional-style jazz band, the Redwine Jazz Band. In 2022, Ben's bands were featured at the historic Dew Drop Jazz and Social Hall, and at the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival. By the way, Ben will be performing in Spain this August and September and his website is redwinejazz.com.
Ben and his wife, Leslie, own RJ Music Group, a company which manufactures clarinet mouthpieces, tools for clarinetists and saxophonists to work on reeds. Their company has also published a couple of books.
Ben’s interests include gardening and landscaping their 10 acre property, where they raise chickens, have a fully stocked pond where they fish, and have added solar panels and back-up battery systems to their home to be, largely, off-grid.
Leslie Wedwine was born Cincinnati, Ohio, and lived in Puerto Rico, Toronto and San Francisco while growing up. She earned a Bachelors in Mathematics from Sonoma State University and a Masters in Mathematics from Louisiana State University. Thereafter, she taught mathematics at LSU, and subsequently became Chair of the department. She also taught at State University of West Georgia, and Prince George’s Community College in Maryland. Before retiring, she served as Head of School of a small independent school in Annapolis. She then studied art at Loyola University in New Orleans and is now a contemporary visual artist, primarily painting in acrylics, but also creating work of paper maché and sculpture. Her interests also include music and is an avid gardener.