The New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival, a/k/a Jazz Fest, is a 10-day cultural feast in which thousands of musicians, cooks and craftspeople welcome 400,000 visitors each year.
The Louisiana Heritage Fair showcases unforgettable music on multiple stages, delicious Louisiana cuisine in two large food areas, and crafts artisans from the region and around the world demonstrating and selling their work. The Louisiana Heritage Fair is held at the Fair Grounds Race Course over the course of 2 weekends. They are April 29, 30, May 1 and May 5, 6, 7 & 8.
There is a star-studded national and international lineup and hundreds of Louisiana artists, the heart and soul of the Festival, are scheduled to appear. The Festival celebrates the indigenous music and culture of New Orleans and Louisiana, so the music encompasses every style associated with the city and the state: blues, R&B, gospel, Cajun, zydeco, Afro-Caribbean, folk, Latin, rock, rap, country, bluegrass and everything in between. And of course there is lots of jazz, both contemporary and traditional.
The spirit of Jazz Fest was born in 1970 when the great gospel singer Mahalia Jackson appeared at the first New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival. She and Duke Ellington came upon the Eureka Brass Band leading a crowd of second-line revelers through the Festival grounds. George Wein, producer of the Festival, handed Ms. Jackson a microphone, she sang along with the band and joined the parade …. and the Festival continues to celebrate the culture of Louisiana with the combined fervor of a gospel hymn and the joy of a jazz parade.
For more information about top events in Louisiana take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in Louisiana.
For more information on The New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival visit www.nojazzfest.com