NOLA Jazz and Heriatage Festival

Tim Laughlin - Pete Fountain Tribute

If you love music, you should visit the Jazz and Heritge Festival at least once in your live.   And food....if you love food, you should visit too!  Music and food.  The New Orleans way.

The festival runs the last weekend of April and the first weekend in May, and showcases some of the finest musicians you will ever hear.  While they will usually book A list acts, some of the best music will take place on the smaller stages and tents.  You would regret not hearing some fine lesser known groups, that you may never hear again, because you wanted to see someone who you could catch next month some where.

Martha and Will played hosts.  As locals, they will typically come every day, so long at the weather holds.  We were fortunate to get a ride with them.

We had tickets for all three days of the first weekend.  We went for two days, and got rained out on the third.  The weather was bad enough that they didn't even open the gates until about 3PM on Sunday.  While some got their Maroon 5 fix, we stayed at AIROSMITH  and drank Gin and Tonics.

Oh, but those first two days were a bit like paradise.  Best of all, we met Yvette, a friend of Martha and Will,  in who's driveway we parked and walked to the fairgrounds.  They told us that once you meet Yvette, you will have a friend for life.  And what a friend!

Yvette's home is essentially a small museum that sits in the neighborhood near the Fairgound and next to City Park. She caretakes the home of  Robet Guthrie, a well known artist who died much to young.  Guthrie's home, inside an old Sinclair gas station, was once his gallery and studio.  The home is a testament to his work.

Bloody Mary anyone?

After parking, and working out the logistics for the day, the crew walks to Liuzza's for a Bloody Mary while waiting for the gates to open.  Once through the gate, your first stop should be for a Softshell Crab Poboy.  Did I mention that we were learning all of this from Martha and Will?  They are excellent guides!!

Kumbuka African Dance and Drum Collective
Six stages, and five tents to choose from, all representing the unique style of New Orleans music, and those artists who it has inspired.  If you get tired, you can stroll the craft stalls.  I resisted purchasing a straw top hat, at $200, but regret doing so!

Kumbuka Dance and Drum

Jazz and Heritage Stage - Semolian Warriors 

Second Line March

Second Line

Gentilly Stage

Acura Stage

The food and drink.  There is always the food and drink!
The vendors actually compete to set up here.

Some of my recommendations are any Poboy you happened to see, Crawfish Bread, and Boiled
Crawfish.  Just remember to Pinch the tails, and suck the heads.

Strolling the grounds will put you in contact with Mardi Gras Indians, Social groups, brass bands and the ability to jump into a second line.

Mardi Gras Indians on Parade

Second Line March
Second Line

Of note was the funeral March for Pete Fountain.

Other high points were listening to Trumpet Mafia and the Treme Brass Band.

Trumpet Mafia

Blues Tent - James Andrews and the Crescent City All Stars

Uncle Lionel - Treme Brass Band

Treme Brass Band

Treme Second Line

Lagniappe Stage - Dirty Bourbon River Show

 While we got rained out of our third day, we missed seeing Dr. John perform, it's not really a problem.   He will be at Red Rocks in Colorado in July.  We already have tickets!!


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