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The Cubes Have Arrived
Jazz Fest Draws Near
It’s that special time of year when the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival organization drops the “cubes” on us and we all begin agonizing over those hard to make choices. Let’s take a look at the “main” stages. Right out of the gate we have the unenviable choice between Sting and Sturgill Simpson. Of course, Sting is a legend in his own right, but Simpson has produced a remarkable body of work and his last appearance on the Gentilly Stage was pretty epic (for this one I’d go with Sturgill). On Saturday almost all of Big Freedia’s set falls during the big Fats tribute over on Acura. While Freedia is amazing at fest, this Fats tribute is looking to be a once in a lifetime event. David Byrne is a clear choice to close out the first weekend. Jimmy will be back but Byrne’s only taking one lap with this new show. You’re going to want to see this.
For the second weekend, Thursday ends with Lionel Richie, Lyle Lovett and Toots and the Maytals all hitting the stage at roughly the same time. For this one I think I’d count on the lighter Thursday crowds and wander a bit. I get the sense that Lovett’s set will be the most interesting of the three, but that’s mostly a hunch. The second Friday is really killing me. This is 90s nostalgia day with Beck, Sheryl Crow and LL Cool J all on at the same time. I highly recommend Beck’s live show, but I am very curious to see what Crow is up to these days. If that weren’t enough LL Cool J has Z-Trip with him. Anita Baker is the clear choice on Saturday. This is her farewell tour, so see her while you can. Finally on Sunday, putting Jack White and the Radiatiors 40th anniversary show on against each other is just criminal. To make it worse neither of these acts are closing the day. The Steve Miller Band is great and all but the Rads should have the spot at Gentilly they held for ages for their anniversary.
On the whole it’s a good lineup for the field stages. Not too much agony and just enough choices to keep life interesting.
To Do This Week
Tonight check out Mighty Brother at Tips. On Friday, Bonerama is at the Joy and Honey Island is at Tips. Saturday, Cut Copy roll into the Joy. Monday, Timber Timbre is at Gasa Gasa. Tuesday, Rostam plays Gasa. Wednesday, Sweet Crude play Wednesdays at the Square.
To Listen This Week
- Kacey Musgraves’ excellent new record is streaming over at NPR’s First Listen
- New music from Stephen Malkmus and the Jicks via CoS
- CHVRCHES cover Beyonce’s “XO” via Youtube