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New Orleans Jazz Festival Features a Variety of Performers

This year’s New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival features an eclectic list of performers including Dave Matthews Band, B.B. King, the Black Crowes, Wilco, Cowboy Mouth, Buckwheat Zydeco, James Taylor, The Roots, Buddy Guy, Dr. John, Nelly, Brian Wilson, B.B. King, Jack Johnson, Elvis Costello & the Imposters and the Dirty Dozen Brass Band. The festival takes place on two different weekends, each with their own set of performers, from April 22-24 and then from April 28-May 1.

This year’s festival includes a new stage, the Jazz & Heritage stage. This stage celebrates New Orleans’ historic African American communities and features New Orleans’ Mardi Gras Indians, brass bands and Social Aid & Pleasure Clubs. Listeners will hear music that is unique to New Orleans and can also participate in second-line parades that run through the fair ground.

With 66 food vendors, the festival also features a wide array of New Orleans’ culinary staples; festival-goers can sample everything from crawfish bisque to po-boy sandwiches to pecan pralines.

Along with the music and the food, this festival also features daily educational programs presented by the Louis Armstrong Educational Foundation. Some highlights include: Jazz Phrasing and Improvisation which takes place on April 25 and features Benny Golson, Fred Sanders and Ocie Davis and Kids Day at the Heritage Fair which takes place on April 28 and features Culu Children’s Traditional African Dance Company and the African Renaissance Dancers.

The festival has been around for over three and a half decades and was originally held in New Orleans’ historical Congo Square, where artists like Duke Ellington, Mahalia Jackson and Al Hirt were featured.

Tickets and more information are available at

Originally Published