2012 Crescent City Blues & BBQ Festival

Oct 12–14, 2012
Friday, Oct: 12: 5:30-8:00 p.m.; Saturday, Oct. 13 & Sunday, Oct. 14: 11:00 a.m.-8:00 p.m.
Lafayette Square Park
540 St. Charles Ave.
New Orleans, Louisiana 70130
Admission: Free

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"I've been to many blues festivals in the U.S. and Europe, and I can honestly say that the Crescent City Blues & BBQ Festival is a charming piece of musical heaven. If you are planning a trip to New Orleans and want to experience the city and its wonderful music without enormous crowds, put this October, free festival on your musical bucket list." -  Art Tipaldi, Editor, Blues Revue Magazine


Legendary blues man Keb Mo (pictured), veteran soul singers Clarence Carter and Latimore, blues harmonica ace Sugar Blue, guitar shredder Larry Burton and Baton Rouge's Grammy-winning blues artist Chris Thomas King are some of the great acts who will appear at the seventh annual Crescent City Blues & BBQ Festival

Lafayette guitar ace Li'l Buck Sinegal, Austin-based blues belter Miss Lavelle White, and Mississippi-by-way-of-Chicago soul man Otis Clay (backed by the Memphis-based Bo-Keys) also are on the bill. New Orleans' own Johnny Sansone, Little Freddie King, Ernie Vincent and J. Monque'D will perform as well.Otis Clay

And making his first appearance at the event is New Orleans-based blues troubadour Spencer Bohren. Returning to New Orleans after a long absence is blues stalwart Ironing Board Sam.

The seventh 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. 12-14 at New Orleans' Lafayette Square Park. Admission is free!

2012 Performance Schedule:

St. Charles Avenue Stage
5:30 pm – 6:30 pm Luther Kent & Trick Bag
6:45 pm – 8:00 pm Chris Thomas KingChris Thomas King

Street Stage
11:00 am – 12:00 pm J. Monque’D
1:15 pm – 2:15 pm Little Freddie King
3:30 pm – 4:30 pm Johnny Sansone
5:45 pm – 6:45 pm Sugar Blue

St. Charles Avenue Stage
12:00 pm – 1:15 pm Ernie Vincent
2:15 pm – 3:30 pm Li’l Buck Sinegal
4:30 pm – 5:45 pm The Bo-Keys with Otis Clay
6:45 pm – 8:00 pm Keb Mo

Camp Street Stage

11:00 am – 12:00 pm Amedee Frederick, "The Creole Blues Man"
1:15 pm – 2:15 pm Spencer Bohren
3:30 pm – 4:30 pm Larry Burton
5:45 pm – 6:45 pm Miss Lavelle White

St. Charles Avenue Stage
12:00 pm – 1:15 pm Richard Smith
2:15 pm – 3:30 pm Ironing Board Sam
4:30 pm – 5:45 pm LatimoreLatimoreSpencer Bohren
6:45 pm – 8:00 pm Clarence Carter

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. PLEASE: Except for those with small children or dietary restrictions, please do not bring outside food or beverages to the event - no coolers are permitted.

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 Backstage Passes
To help recoup some of our costs, we are selling a very limited number (75) of special VIP backstage passes. These provide access to special viewing and seating areas at both stages, a complimentary bar and a deluxe hospitality suite with air conditioning and indoor bathrooms. The passes cost $250 each (plus a $13.49 service charge) and are available exlusively online - click here to order. Only 75 passes are being sold, so order yours today! See the details at CrescentCityBluesFest.eventbrite.com.

T-Shirt Design Contest:
Once again, we held a contest to come up with a design for our t-shirt. The creator of the winning design is Naldo Adrian, a 28-year-old graphic designer in Jakarta, Indonesia. Winning designs from overseas are becoming a tradition for the Blues & BBQ Festival. Last year’s winner was Marco Gambella, aka Ranboh, who lives in Padua, Italy. Full details here.

Abita Sports Bar:
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. It's a Saints bye week, so we won't have the boys in gold and black to cheer on. But we'll still have our famous Abita Sports Bar, a great place to enjoy a beverage and watch all the weekend's sports action on several large-screen TVs.Clarence Carter

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 parking 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. Let us know you're coming by filling out a free registration here. Thanks!

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 in years past, 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. We're still finalizing the schedule, but here are the interviews confirmed so far:

Ernie VincentSaturday, Oct. 13
12:00 p.m.    Li'l Buck Sinegal
1:00 p.m.      Otis Clay
2:00 p.m.      Ernie Vincent
3:00 p.m.      Sugar Blue
4:00 p.m.      TBA

Sunday, Oct. 14
12:00 p.m.   Latimore
1:00 p.m.     Ironing Board Sam
2:00 p.m.     Amedee Frederick
3:00 p.m.     Miss Lavelle WhiteMiss Lavelle White
4:00 p.m.     Spencer Bohren


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 complete list of food vendors and menu items, or see 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. See here for the complete list of arts market vendors, or see the Downloads section below.

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.

No Outside Food or Drinks 
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.No Pets

No Pets:
We know that Lafayette Square is normally open to dogs. But not this weekend. Please come to the festival, but we also ask that you respect this policy: No pets allowed. Thank you.

No-Chairs Perimteter
Due to the heavy use of camp chairs by many fans in close proximity to our stages, this year we are forced to institute a "no chairs" perimeter of 75 feet from both stages. We appreciate that many of you like to bring chairs to the festival and set up camp in front of the stages. But this prevents many of our other guests from having the opportunity to get a closer look at the onstage action. We thank you in advance for your understanding.Johnny Sansone

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

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 2012 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 2012 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.

2012 Blues Fest Food Vendors and Menus

2012 Blues Fest Arts Market Vendors


Click the links below to play videos.

Johnny Sansone Johnny Sansone Performing his Blues Music Award Song of the Year, "The Lord Is Waiting" (w Anders Osborne)
Otis Clay Otis Clay Otis Clay w the Bo-Keys
Blues & BBQ Explored Blues & BBQ Explored A mini-documentary about our free festival
More Blues Fest Info More Blues Fest Info Another mini-doc about our Blues Fest

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.

2012 Crescent City Blues & BBQ Festival gratefully acknowledges the following sponsors:

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