Morose Jazz DJ/Trumpeter
Depression-era St. Marthe and The Prohibition in nearby Chicago instilled in Franklin James a taste for jazz and alcohol— two indulgences that were to set him down on his life’s path.
Just as the young trumpeter was to release his first record, the Second World War broke out. When Duke returned, he was a remnant of his former self, ever more dependent on drink, burying himself in composing what would eventually prove to be a landmark album that became a commercial and critical success.
This success also drew the attention of the vampire Rourke, who Embraced the musician and then vanished. Left to fend for himself, the fledgling vampire learned to control his urges and master his new abilities on his own.
That was almost sixty years ago. Today the acerbic, gravelly-voiced vampire works as a graveyard DJ for a jazz web/radio station. He can only feed on skilled musicians, a trait he inherited from his sire. Twice a week, he hosts a highly-regarded (at least among jazz enthusiasts in St. Marthe) amateur jazz hour, which allows him to find new prey.
Franklin is scrupulous in his feeding habits, leaving his hosts alive and unharmed— his respect for fellow musicians, combined with his need to survive on a highly-specialized diet, means he has become the cigarette smoke-wreathed patron and protector of sorts for jazz and blues musicians in his city. He watches over his charges from The Chimney, his private room in the popular jazz bar, The Lantern. In so doing, he nurtures both his beloved music, and his food source.