2011 Crescent City Blues & BBQ Festival

Oct 14–16, 2011
Friday, Oct: 14: 5:30-8:00 p.m.; Saturday, Oct. 15 & Sunday, Oct. 16: 11:00 a.m.-8:00 p.m.
Lafayette Square Park
530 St. Charles Ave.
New Orleans, Louisiana 70130
Admission: Free!

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Photo Gallery

2011 Crescent City Blues & BBQ Festival

Check out our new photo gallery to see images of this year's performers!

Shreveport guitar shredder Kenny Wayne Shepherd, legendary soul singer Bettye LaVette, R&B soul man Mel Waiters, Louisiana blues activist Tab Benoit, honky tonk piano queen Marcia Ball, sacred steel heroes The Campbell Brothers, roots supergroup the South Memphis String Band and Mississippi blues original Super Chikan are among the headline performers at the 2011 Crescent City Blues & BBQ Festival.

The sixth annual Crescent City Blues & BBQ Festival, presented by the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Foundation, celebrates Southern soul with the best in local and international blues and R&B talent, plus the greatest assemblage of home-style barbecue to be found in New Orleans. It takes place Oct. 14-16 at New Orleans' Lafayette Square Park. Admission is free!

2011 Performance Schedule:

St. Charles Ave. Stage
5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. Henry Butler
6:45 pm to 8:00 pm Walter "Wolfman" Washington

Camp Street Stage
11:00 am to 12:00 pm Washboard Chaz Blues Trio
1:15 pm to 2:15 pm Jimmie Duck Holmes
3:30 pm to 4:30 pm South Memphis String Band
5:45 pm to 6:45 pm Mel Waiters

St. Charles Ave. Stage
12:00 pm to 1:15 pm King James & the Special Men
2:15 pm to 3:30 pm Little Freddie King
4:30 pm to 5:45 pm Tab Benoit
6:45 pm to 8:00 pm Kenny Wayne Shepherd

Camp Street Stage
11:00 am to 12:00 pm Voodoo Blues Challenge Winner Ed Wills & Blues 4 Sale with guest Chance Casteel
1:15 pm to 2:15 pm Homemade Jamz
3:30 pm to 4:30 pm Super Chikan & Watermelon Slim
5:45 pm to 6:45 pm Marcia Ball

St. Charles Ave. Stage
12:00 pm to 1:15 pm Eric Lindell
2:15 pm to 3:30 pm Luther Kent & Trick Bag
4:30 pm to 5:45 pm The Campbell Brothers
6:45 pm to 8:00 pm Bettye LaVette

The Crescent City Blues & BBQ Festival is New Orleans' premier showcase of Southern blues and soul - with two stages of music, a dozen vendors of outstanding barbecue and a massive crafts fair featuring hand-made works by artisans from throughout the region. 

Keep The Festival Free
Like all of our events, the Crescent City Blues & BBQ Festival is completely free and open to the public - part of the community investment made by the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Foundation. If you would like to support the Foundation and help keep this event free, please make the tax-deductible contribution of your choice here.

VIP Experience
For the first time, we are offering a limited number (50) of backstage VIP backstage passes to the public at a cost of $250 each. These passes are nontransferable and are good for the entire weekend. They entitle you to exclusive access to our backstage hospitality area, with a complimentary bar. VIP Experience passes are now sold out. Thanks to all who purchased them. 

Host Hotel: Hilton Riverside
The Hilton Riverside New Orleans has joined the festival as the official host hotel. Discounted rates of $169 per night are being offered for those attending our festival. To book a room, see this link.

We are pleased to have The Abita Brewing Co. returning as a major sponsor of the Crescent City Blues & BBQ Festival - meaning that Abita (in various flavors) will be the official beer of the event.

Abita Sports Bar:
Sports fans who want to keep tabs on all the weekend's sporting activities should enjoy our new Abita Sports Bar, a great place to enjoy a beverage and watch the games.

Blues Fest Photo Contest:
Are you a Facebooker? Did you take any great pictures at the Blues & BBQ Festival? If so, upload your photos to join our free contest for the best Blues Fest pictures. Fans will vote on Facebook for the best shots, with the top five vote-getters winning our official Blues & BBQ Fan Package - which includes a Blues Fest t-shirt and other goodies. To enter, follow this link. Good luck!

Public Transit:
Lafayette Square is conveniently located along the St. Charles Avenue streetcar line.

Easy parking is available at several surface and indoor parking lots within a few blocks of the festival. The Poydras Center (650 Poydras Street) will offer all-day partking on Saturday and Sunday for a flat fee of $7 per day -- enter the parking garage from Camp Street.

Free Bicycle Parking
In collaboration with our friends at Bike Easy, a nonprofit dedicated to promoting bicycle ridership, we’re offering free valet bicycle parking. Please ride your bike to the event, knowing that it’ll be stored safe and secure – and you won’t have to hassle with locking it to a telephone pole or worrying about somebody stealing your tires or seat. In order to help us get an accurate count of how many bikes to expect, so that we can be adequately staffed, please complete a free registration here. Thank you.

On the Radio:
Community radio station WWOZ 90.7 FM will broadcast most of the Crescent City Blues & BBQ Festival live from Lafayette Square – over the air and in streaming audio at www.wwoz.org.

Oral History Stage:
As we did last year, we will host an Oral History Stage where many of our performers will be interviewed about their lives, influences and music. The interviews will be open to the public, and will take place in the NORD Theater in the ground floor of Gallier Hall – just across St. Charles Avenue from Lafayette Square. Here's the schedule of interviews:

Saturday, October 15:
1:30 pm – 2:30 pm - Tab Benoit
2:45 pm – 3:45 pm - Mel Waiters
4:00 – 4:45 pm - Kenny Wayne Shepherd
5:30 pm – 6:30 pm - Luther Dickinson

Sunday, October 16:
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm – Jimmie “Duck” Holmes
1:15 pm – 2:15 pm - Watermelon Slim & Super Chikan
2:30 pm – 3:30 pm - Campbell Brothers
3:45 pm 4:45 pm - Marcia Ball

Food Vendors and Menu
Ready for some smokin' barbecue? Even if you thought we couldn't do better than last year, we've put together a menu of food featuring more traditional barbecue than ever, plus a wide assortment of local favorites, barbecue innovations, desserts and vegetarian options. See here for the complete menu, or check the downloads section below.

Art Market:
Come to Blues & BBQ ready to shop. We've organized an expansive arts market - complete with its own Arts Market Cafe with interesting beverages. For the complete list of arts market vendors, see the downloads section below or click here.

CDs, T-Shirts and Autographs:
As in the past, the Louisiana Music Factory will host our merchandise operation. Most of our performers will visit the tent to sign autographs immediately after their performances.

T-Shirt Design Contest:
Once again, we're holding a contest to come up with a design for our t-shirt. The winner's artwork will be featuring on the official 2011 Blues & BBQ Fest official t-shirt - and they'll get a $400 cash prize. This year, our friends at Creative Allies are managing the contest. To enter, click on this link. For more details on the contest, read this blog entry.

Food, Drinks, Chairs, Pets, etc.:
The Crescent City Blues & BBQ Festival is a free event. Please help us to keep this and our other events free by patronizing our food and beverage vendors. Except for those with specific dietary restrictions or special needs, we ask that you not bring coolers or ice chests with outside food and beverages. Camp chairs or folding chairs are welcome. Please respect our other guests by not bringing pets to the festival. Thank you.

No Recording:
Please, no audio or video recording of any performances at the festival.

We are partnering with the St. Bernard Project - a nationally-recognized nonprofit that specializes in rebuilding houses damaged in Hurricane Katrina - to offer a volunteer work day on the Friday of our festival. Registration for the volunteer work day has now closed. Thanks to all who signed up!  Volunteers will be contacted in advance with details on where to go, what to wear and what to bring. For examples of what our volunteers have done in the past, see the pictures of our recent Community Day of Service in our photo gallery. For more information, contact the St. Bernard Project here.

The Crescent City Blues & BBQ Festival is a presentation of the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Foundation, the nonprofit organization that owns the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival presented by Shell. The Foundation uses the proceeds from Jazz Fest, and other funds, for year-round programs in the areas of education, economic development and cultural events. For more about the Foundation and what we do, visit us online at www.jazzandheritage.org.

The 2011 Crescent City Blues & BBQ Festival is funded in part by a grant from South Arts in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts and the Louisiana Division of the Arts.

The 2011 Crescent City Blues & BBQ Festival also is supported by a grant from the Louisiana Division of the Arts, Office of Cultural Development, Department of Culture, Recreation and Tourism, in cooperation with the Louisiana State Arts Council. The grant is administered through the Arts Council of New Orleans.


Click the links below to download documents.



Links & Downloads:

Interview with Kenny Wayne Shepherd
Blues Revue magazine interviews our headliner.

Interview with Tab Benoit

Bettye LaVette in the NY Times
The New York Times LOVES Bettye LaVette

Washboard Chaz cover story in OffBeat
OffBeat magazine does a cover feature on one of our local treasures, Washboard Chaz.

Jimmy "Duck" Holmes interview
Jimmy "Duck" Holmes interviewed in Big City Rhythm & Blues magazine.


Click the links below to play videos.

Blues Fest Promo Video Blues Fest Promo Video 30-second spot
Crescent City Blues & BBQ Festival Video Crescent City Blues & BBQ Festival Video Promo video with clips from the 2010 festival.
Kenny Wayne Shepherd Band Kenny Wayne Shepherd Band
Bettye LaVette Bettye LaVette Bettye LaVette doing the Who's "Love Reign O'er Me" at the Kennedy Center
The Cambell Brothers The Cambell Brothers The dynamic Campbell Brothers video
Mel Waiters Mel Waiters The amazing Mel Waiters - live!
Jimmy Jimmy "Duck" Holmes
The Homemade Jamz Blues Band The Homemade Jamz Blues Band What a family!
Super Chikan Super Chikan The one and only.
Henry Butler Henry Butler "Something You Got"
Walter Walter "Wolfman" Washington "You Can Stay..."
King James & the Special Men King James & the Special Men Live at BJ's Lounge
South Memphis String Band South Memphis String Band Luther Dickinson, Jimbo Mathus & Alvin Youngblood Hart
Blues & BBQ Fest Blues & BBQ Fest 60-second promo
Blues & BBQ Fest Blues & BBQ Fest 90-second promo

Blues & BBQ Festival Archive:

2020's Line-up and Festival Details
2019's Line-up and Festival Details
2018's Line-up and Festival Details
2017's Line-up and Festival Details
2016's Line-up and Festival Details
2015's Line-up and Festival Details
2014's Line-up and Festival Details
2013's Line-up and Festival Details
2012's Line-up and Festival Details
2011's Line-up and Festival Details
2010's Line-up and Festival Details
2009's Line-up and Festival Details
2008's Line-up and Festival Details
2007's Line-up and Festival Details

Check out what else we do.

2011 Crescent City Blues & BBQ Festival gratefully acknowledges the following sponsors:

The New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival and Foundation, Inc.