Jazz & Heritage Festival Announces Lineup

 Van Morrison, Aretha Franklin, Pearl Jam and Steve Martin are just a few of the artists headlining the scheduled for spring 2010.

The 41st annual event, set for April 23-25 and April 29-May 2 at the Fair Grounds Race Course, also welcomes the return of a few festival vets, including The Allman Brothers Band, B.B. King, Widespread Panic and The Black Crowes.

Photo: AP Photo
Motown 50th Anniversary gala, Detroit, Mich.

Steve Martin, whose bluegrass album – The Crow: New Songs For The 5-String Banjo – was released in January 2009, appears with the Steep Canyon Rangers.

Making their J&H debut will be My Morning Jacket, Anita Baker, Gipsy Kings, The Dead Weather, Levon Helm Band, Drake and Jonny Lang.

Of course, several Louisiana acts are also on the lineup, including Dr. John, Neville Brothers and Buckwheat Zydeco.

Photo: Owen Sweeney / OwenSweeneyPhoto.com
Meyerhoff Symphony Hall, Baltimore, Md.

“It’s just a way cool thing that Jazz Fest is so broad that it can embrace all these different things, all these different artists,” festival producer Quint Davis said. “We have jazz in the name, but it’s not just jazz music.”

The festival will also host a tribute to Louis Prima, the New Orleans-born trumpet player whose jazz and swing performances helped spread the music of the Big Easy throughout the world.

“He’s so New Orleans,” Davis said. “He was one of the first major voices in getting jazz and New Orleans to be dominant world powers in music. We have some very special things in the works to honor him.”

Photo: AP Photo
NBC "Tonight Show with Conan O’Brien", Universal City, Calif.

As with past Jazz & Heritage Festivals, the first lineup announcement only nails down the dates and artists but not individual day-to-day schedules.

But you can buy tickets today, including first and second weekend discount packages,single day tickets and various VIP packages. Just click here for the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival Web site.