2016 Crescent City Blues & BBQ Festival

Oct 14–16, 2016
Friday, Oct. 14: 5 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.; Saturday, Oct. 15, and Sunday, Oct. 16: 11:00 a.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Lafayette Square Park
540 St. Charles Ave.
New Orleans, Louisiana 70130
Admission: Free

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Photo Gallery

2016 Crescent City Blues & BBQ Festival

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


Taj Mahal, Jon Cleary & the Absolute Monster Gentlemen, Tucka, The Suffers, Tab Benoit and Nikki Hill are among the featured performers at the 11th annual Crescent City Blues & BBQ Festival, presented by the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Foundation Oct. 14-16 in New Orleans’ Lafayette Square Park. Admission is free.

"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

All the details are below. But if you want to keep up with all the latest news - like tons of videos, audio, photos and other tidbits of info to give you the inside scoop on the festival and all of our performers - tune in to our Facebook page here.

2016 Crescent City Blues & BBQ Festival Schedule:

5:30 p.m. to 6:45 p.m.  The Suffers
7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.  Tab Benoit

12 p.m. to 1 p.m.  Colin Lake
2:15 p.m. to 3:15 p.m.  Nikki Hill
4:30 p.m. to 5:45 p.m.  Jon Cleary & the Absolute Monster Gentlemen
7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.  Taj Mahal

11 a.m. to 12 p.m.  Jimmy "Duck" Holmes
1 p.m. to 2:15 p.m.   Jontavious Willis
3:15 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.  Walter "Wolfman" Washington & the Roadmasters
5:45 p.m. to 7 p.m.  Alvin Youngblood Hart & Muscle Theory

12 p.m. to 1 p.m.  Smoky Greenwell
2:15 p.m. to 3:15 p.m.  Little Freddie King
4:30 p.m. to 5:45 p.m.  Tyree Neal
7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.  Tucka

11 a.m. to 12 p.m.  Lil Poochie & Hezekiah Early
1 p.m. to 2:15 p.m.   Benny Turner
3:15 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.  Johnny Sansone
5:45 p.m. to 7 p.m.  Cedric Burnside Project

Arts Market
As always, we will host a huge arts market, with 24 of our best local and regional makers of hand-crafted artworks and home furnishings. We have carefully curated our group of arts market vendors to showcase the finest quality. For the complete list of arts market vendors, see here. For a cool slide show that gives examples of the great work that our vendors will have for sale, please see here.

Food Vendors
Once again, we've gone overboard with a huge spread of great barbecue, representing several regional styles - with a fresh emphasis on Louisiana, since New Orleans has seen a surge in barbecue restaurants (ahem) in the time since we started this festival! And yes, it's a barbecue festival - but we still have some options for vegetarians, vegans and those who eat gluten-free. Our 2016 food vendors have now been announced! After extensive review - and tasting lots of yummy stuff - we've put together a group of 12 amazing food purveyors who will be sure to delight your appetite. See the list of 2016 food vendors and their menus here.

VIP Experience Passes
To help recoup some of our costs, we put on sale a very limited number of special VIP Experience backstage passes. These provide access to special viewing and seating areas at both stages, a complimentary bar and a deluxe indoor hospitality suite with a balcony view of Lafayette Square, air conditioning, catering and real bathrooms. The VIP Experience passes cost $250 each (plus a service charge of $13.49), and are good for the entire weekend. We do not sell single-day passes. The passes are not transferrable (from one person to another) and all sales are final (no refunds). To order, click here. Note: VIP passes are non-transferrable and non-refundable.

Official Music Player
Check out our official 2016 Crescent City Blues & BBQ Festival music player, featuring tracks from most of this year's performers, powered by VL Group.


Host Hotel
Looking for a place to stay? Choose the Blake Hotel New Orleans and receive a 15 percent discount from the standard rate. Use this link, and select the special rate LCCBF. Note: Booking a room at the Blake Hotel does not provide access to the hotel’s balcony or other Blues & BBQ Fest VIP Experience areas at the Blake.

No Oral History Stage This Year
Due to construction in Gallier Hall, we no longer have access to the NORD Theater on the ground floor of that building across St. Charles Avenue from Lafayette Square. Accordingly, we won’t have an oral history interview stage this year. Here’s to hoping that we’ll be able to bring it back next year.

Official Poster
Bluesman Tab Benoit is the subject of our third annual official Blues & BBQ Festival poster. As with the previous posters, it was created by New Orleans artist John Bukaty. The poster will be on sale in two versions: signed by both Bukaty and Benoit, numbered and embossed, for $125; and numbered and signed by Bukaty for $50. We also have a few left of our 2015 poster, featuring Walter “Wolfman” Washington, and the 2014 poster, Little Freddie King. You can order them online 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. We’ll have an official Crescent City Blues & BBQ Festival t-shirt available for sale as well.

Official Blues & BBQ Festival T-Shirt
As we have done for five years, we hosted a contest to design the official Crescent City Blues & BBQ Festival t-shirt. This year's winning design is by Richi Barba of (wait for it...) Serbia. (Why not?) Unlike our poster, out can't buy the t-shirt online. The only place to get it as at the festival. And we always sell out. So get your t-shirts early while supplies last.

Keep The Festival Safe and Free: No Outside Food, Beverages or Pets
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.

We realize that Lafayette Square is usually open to pets. But for the safety and comfort of our large audience, we ask that you respect your neighbors and leave your companion animals at home (except for service animals, of course). Thank you.

Please note that we will post donation boxes at all of the entrances to the park - your donations are most welcome and help us to offset our (very significant) costs in producing this event. If you would like to support the Foundation and help keep this event free, please make the tax-deductible contribution of your choice here.

No Smoking
The City of New Orleans has a new prohibition on smoking - which doesn't cover outdoor spaces in most of the city, but it does cover Lafayette Square. So, please, no smoking of cigarettes, cigars or pipes, and no vaping. Thank you.

Public Transit
Lafayette Square is conveniently located along the St. Charles Avenue streetcar line and the Magazine Street bus route.

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 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.

Looking for a place to park? Don't! Use this link to book your parking spot before you leave home, and come to the festival knowing that your parking problem is already solved. There is also parking in the Poydras Center (650 Poydras Street) lot starting at 10:30 a.m. on Saturday and Sunday for a flat fee of $10 per day -- enter the parking garage from Camp Street.

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.

No-Chairs Perimeter
Due to the heavy use of camp chairs by many fans in close proximity to our stages, 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.

ADA Access
We provide reserved areas at both stages for our guests who use wheelchairs. And - new this year - we have a special deck with views of both stages reserved for our guests in wheelchairs. All of our food booths will have serving counters at a height of 32-inches. We also provide ADA compliant toilets in all three of our locations for Port-O-Lets (at the corners of Camp and North Maestri streets, Camp Street and South Maestri streets, and St. Charles at South Maestri). The ADA toilets are kept locked for cleanliness; to access them, please visit our Foundation Information booth and we'll provide you with the key or combination, or ask any of the greeters who are seated at the donation boxes at six entry points around the park.

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.


Click the links below to download documents.

2016 Blues & BBQ Festival Food Vendors and Menus

2016 Blues & BBQ Festival Arts Market Vendors

2016 Blues & BBQ Fest Arts Market Vendors Slide Show

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.

2016 Crescent City Blues & BBQ Festival gratefully acknowledges the following sponsors:

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