IMG_5712cTHE KEY TO ME premieres on WYES-TV/Channel 12 on Saturday, May 3 at 9:00 p.m. 

Born and raised in New Orleans’ Irish Channel, Paul Sanchez  had no choice but to grow up tough. After his dad died early in his life, Paul’s mother had to take on the challenging role of raising a large family on her own. Determined to overcome the hurdles of his environment, Paul fortunately escaped through music and first entered the scene as a member of the popular band Cowboy Mouth. Despite the fans and success, life was still a void until Paul met the love of his life, Shelly.

THE KEY TO ME premieres on WYES-TV/Channel 12 on Saturday, May 3 at 9:00 p.m. Through music and interviews, the film by James Demaria, profiles the couple, their love, their lives and the impact that they have had on New Orleans. Featured storytellers include friends and colleagues such as Vance Degeneres, Michael Cerveris, Eric Overmyer, Glen David Andrews, John Boutté and many more. The story is one of life, of love and of songs, set against the vibrant backdrop of the Crescent City.

Though their house was devastated by Hurricane Katrina, Paul and Shelly Sanchez returned home to New Orleans to help revitalize its traditionally strong music scene. During that tumultuous time, Paul was instrumental in joining musicians in new and exciting ways, particularly those grounded in rock and jazz, resulting in new blended genres. As the city struggled to pull together and rise above its divisions, Paul continued to help many young musicians by taking them under his wing. A gifted singer and songwriter in his own right, Paul worked with newly founded Threadhead Records as he reentered the studio to record his songs, bringing many of his friends to the label as well. In 2011, Paul adapted Dan Baum’s book, Nine Lives, for the stage and wrote a collection of songs that brought together New Orleans’ most talented musicians.

Even as they faced this new chapter in their life together, Shelly received the shocking news that she had breast cancer. Paul walked away from his career and dedicated all of his time to the one thing more important than his music: Shelly, the love of his life. Follow Paul and Shelly’s journey through treatment and tribulations as they come full circle – from being a young, carefree couple, to their fight against the disease that would try to tear them apart and back to the music that brought them together in the first place.

Wife Shelly and Paul Sanchez

Wife Shelly and Paul Sanchez

Musician Paul Sanchez

Musician Paul Sanchez

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James Demaria has been a professional photographer for almost twenty years. His work has primarily been in the advertising, fashion and music world, but in 2009 he changed his direction and started directing and producing documentary films about his spiritual home, New Orleans.

His first effort, Tremé Life, earned him recognition in the NOLA music and arts community, which led to his second film, The Key To Me. James has another film in production, TRAD, which will be ready for release in the summer of 2014.

When not in the editing room James spends his free time with his two beautiful daughters in New Jersey.


Watch the premiere of THE KEY TO ME with musician and star of the film, Paul Sanchez, and filmmaker James Demaria!! Then stay after the screening, where Paul will perform and answer questions along with James.

WHEN: Saturday, May 3 at 9:00 p.m.

TIME: 9:00 p.m.  Screening Begins

WHERE:  Buffa’s Bar & Restaurant, 1001 Esplanade Ave

No need to reserve a spot, just head on over to Buffa's!

New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival

Don't miss Paul Sanchez when he performs at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival on the Lagniappe Stage on Saturday, May 3 @ 5:20 p.m.

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