The Baton Rouge Blues Festival announced the lineup for the 25th annual festival with performances from Mavis Staples, Kenny Neal, Henry Gray, William Bell, Deacon John Moore and many others.
The festival will take place in downtown Baton Rouge from April 13-14. It will feature music from talented blues musicians, and there will also be a variety of food and drink vendors. The Baton Rouge Blues Festival is one of the oldest blues festivals in American and has been established since 1981.
The Baton Rouge Blues Festival is produced by the Baton Rouge Blues foundation and honors homegrown musicians like Slim Harpo, Rudy Richard, Silas Hogan, Whisperin’ Smith, Guitar Kelly, Schoolboy Cleve, Chewin’ Gum Johnson and Rafael Neal. This year's festival will also honor the legacy of Leslie “Lazy Lester” Johnson, who passed away Aug. 22, 2018.
Though the festival is free entry for the general public, there are VIP tickets available for purchase. The pass includes entry to exclusive viewing areas, unlimited cocktails and other beverages, private restrooms and a one-year membership to the Baton Rouge Blues Foundation. These VIP tickets are available from $200-$500.
At the festival, attendees can look forward to seeing some pretty talented jazz musicians. At the top of the list is Mavis Staples. Staples has performed with music legends like Bob Dylan and Ray Charles. In 2017, she released her 16th studio album called “If All I Was Was Black."
Another performer, Kenny Neal, was born in New Orleans and raised in Baton Rouge. Neal is known as a modern swamp-blues and multi-instrumentalist. He was inducted into the Louisiana Music Hall of Fame in 2011. His most recent album, “Bloodline,” was nominated for a Grammy Award in 2016.
Attendees don’t have to be super fans of blues music to enjoy the festival. There are many other things for patrons to enjoy such as arts and crafts sold by vendors, a variety of different foods and just the atmosphere of Baton Rouge.