Alcide Patrick Nunez, also known as Yellow Nunez and Al Nunez, was born in St. Bernard Parish, Louisiana and moved to New Orleans in his childhood. He initially played guitar, then switched to clarinet about 1902. He soon became one of the top hot clarinetists in the city. He was a regular in Papa Jack Laine's band, in addition to playing with Tom Brown (trombonist) and sometimes leading bands of his own.
In early 1916 he went north to Chicago with Stein's Dixie Jass Band, which was to become famous as the Original Dixieland Jass Band, but Nunez left the band shortly before they made their first recordings.
After some time playing with Tom Brown's band in Chicago, he went to New York City with Bert Kelly's band. At the start of 1919 he formed his own band, The Louisiana Five which became one of the most popular bands in New York at the time and recorded for several record labels.
In 1922 he returned to Chicago to lead the house band at Kelly's Stables, one of the city's top nightclubs. After Bert Kelly replaced him with Johnny Dodds, Nunez returned with his family to New Orleans, where he played with various bands in addition to his day job with the police department until his death on September 2, 1934.