If you’re a fan of blues music, Baton Rouge has a couple days of music for you this spring.
Last week, the Baton Rouge Blues Festival announced its 2016 lineup. This year’s headliners include Buddy Guy, Latimore, Curtis Harding, and a tribute to Raful Neal by Kenny Neal and the Neal Family.
The free festival will take place April 9-10 in downtown Baton Rouge. The expansion to two days is the first time since 1994 . Programming chair John Kaufman said the timing was right to lengthen the festival.
“Stretching it to two days was something we had talked about,” Kaufman said. “The festival is starting to grow so much, and the demand is there. We were waiting until everything was right. This year was the right year to pull the trigger on that idea. It makes the event and the city much more of a destination.”
The festival will unofficially start Thursday, April 7, with the annual rent party. Kaufman said details have not been set yet for that concert.
But already, festival-goers have much to look forward to. In addition to the aforementioned heavy hitters, the festival will also feature performances from Walter “Wolfman” Washington, Henry Gray, Delta Saints, and local acts like Loudness War, The Rakers and Lafayette guitarist Michael Juan Nunez. Those performances will take place across four stages.
“We wanted to pay the respect to a lot of these players that haven’t been given the opportunity to play,” Kaufman said. “At the same time, we’ll still cultivate a new audience with bands that are very much blues-influenced, but might not be considered traditional blues.”
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