Bo Dollis Jr. and The Wild Magnolias
Bo Dollis, Jr.'s entire life has been shaped and spurred by Mardi Gras Indian culture. He masked for the first time at the age of ten, though his parents, Big Queen Laurita Dollis and the late Bo Dollis Sr., Big Chief of The Wild Magnolias, wanted him to wait a few more years before he participated fully. Determined to mask, Bo Jr. managed to get his mothers attention in that regard when he destroyed one of her beaded purses and started sewing on his own. No one could hold him back after that bold and decisive move, and young Bo took his first steps towards become a Big Chief.
Bo took on the title of Big Chief in 2006 and assumed leadership of The Wild Magnolias in 2012 at the behest of his father. Bo Jr. has masked and performed with the band throughout most of his life, in venues all over New Orleans including Tipitina's and the House of Blues, and at multiple Jazz Fests. He and the band played the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta, Georgia, as well as The White House in 2011 for President Obama when Bo Dollis, Sr. was awarded a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship.
The Wild Magnolias have been honored to share the stage with various luminaries over the years, including Cyril Neville, Dr. John, Big Chief Monk Boudreaux, Troy "Trombone Shorty" Andres, Galactic, Rockin' Dopsie, Marva Wright, Robbie Robinson, Master P, and Widespread Panic, Bo Jr. and the band released A New Kind of Funk in 2013, their first CD of original recordings since 1999.