Trout Fishing in America
1:50 p.m.-2:35 p.m.
4:20 p.m.-5:15 p.m.
Though bassist Keith Grimwood and guitarist Ezra Idlet met in a Texas folk rock band (named St. Elmo's Fire), they made a name for themselves as the duo Trout Fishing in America by focusing on music for family audiences. (They took the name from Richard Brautigan's book.) Idlet's gravelly voice mimics prehistoric creatures on their popular tune "When I Was a Dinosaur," and the duo's most recent kids album was 2014's Rubber Baby Buggy Bumpers, a jolly collection of tongue twisters and wordplay. Trout Fishing has been nominated for four Grammy Awards for music for children. The duo returned to its more mature folk roots in 2017 with the album The Strangest Times.
WWOZ Jazz Tent
2:40 p.m.-3:30 p.m.
Quiana Lynell won the Sarah Vaughan International Vocal Competition in New Jersey in November 2017, and the top prize included a recording contract with Concord Records. The Baton Rouge native studied classical music at LSU, but her performances draw on a variety of genres, including blues, jazz and R&B, and songs by everyone from Ella Fitzgerald to Irma Thomas. For this performance, she's joined by drummer Jamison Ross, and she'll sing some original songs she's recorded for the album.
Dr. Michael White & The Original Liberty Jazz Band with Thais Clark
Economy Hall Tent
3 p.m.-4 p.m.
Clarinetist Dr. Michael White continues to make new music in the styles of early jazz and this set falls on the local release date for Tricentennial Rag. While the album opens with the standard "When the Saints Go Marching In," the rest of the album comprises all original tunes with a mix of early jazz sounds, including strains of ragtime, Latin rhythms, blues, brass band romps and the Carnival parade-ready "On a Mardi Gras Day." Vocalist Thais Clark joins the band for this performance.
Henry Butler & The Jambalaya Band
3 p.m.-3:55 p.m.
Pianist Henry Butler has left New Orleans several times and currently lives in New York, following a few moves after Hurricane Katrina and the levee failures flooded his Gentilly home. The piano prodigy released jazz albums on the Windham Hill label in the early 1990s before he returned to New Orleans and focused on blues and roots music, recording Vu-Du Menz with Corey Harris for Alligator Records. With his deep voice and forceful playing, he'll perform a mix of blues and jazz with his Jambalaya band in the Blues Tent. Butler also will be featured in a tribute to early jazz pianist Jelly Roll Morton in the Cultural Exchange Pavilion at 12:45 p.m.
Congo Square Stage
3:25 p.m.-4:35 p.m.
Listeners may be familiar with Chocolate Milk's funk and soul hits "Action Speaks Louder Than Words," "Girl Callin'," "Groove City" and "Blue Jeans." Less well-known is that Chocolate Milk emerged in New Orleans before it relocated and eventually disbanded in 1983. As a sort of successor to The Meters, Chocolate Milk served as a studio band for Allen Toussaint before signing a contract with RCA. From the mid-'70s to early 1980s, it released eight albums for the label. Beginning in the early '80s, the lineup changed and the band started to focus on disco. Chocolate Milk reformed and released a greatest hits album in 2002, and it has re-emerged, showcasing a blend of deep funk, soul and R&B.
Jon Batiste with The Dap-Kings
3:30 p.m.-4:45 p.m.
After a couple of years leading his band Stay Human on The Late Show With Stephen Colbert, Jon Batiste enjoyed a celebratory homecoming on the Acura Stage at Jazz Fest last year, sitting at the keys of a grand piano, playing his signature melodica and leading the band into the crowd — to the extent allowed by the fences in front of the stage. This year, he returns with The Dap-Kings, purveyors of 1960s- and 1970s-style funk and soul best known for backing the late Sharon Jones (and Amy Winehouse on some recordings). In recent years, The Dap-Kings have collaborated with numerous artists, including performing with Sturgill Simpson. Batiste and The Dap-Kings are joining forces at several festivals this summer, and their set features songs by Allen Toussaint.
Jazz & Heritage Stage
4:25 p.m.-5:25 p.m.
Indian suits are a familiar sight at the Jazz & Heritage Stage, but not typically those of the Apsaalooke tribe, or Crow Nation. Given the name Christian Parrish Takes the Gun at birth, Supaman was attracted to early gangsta rap before he developed a style that reflected his Native American heritage, spirituality and dance. While his straight rapping can sound more imitative than innovative, he's at his best when live looping Native American chants, rapping and incorporating fancy dancing.
Congo Square Stage
5:20 p.m.-6:50 p.m.
Together with his brothers Ronnie and Robert, Charlie Wilson had a stellar career with the Gap Band, which thrived in the eras of 1970s and '80s funk, soul, R&B and disco. The band's hits included "Early in the Morning," "You Dropped a Bomb on Me," "Outstanding" and "Burn Rubber on Me (Why You Wanna Hurt Me)." The Gap Band retired in 2010, but in his solo career — Charlie started releasing solo albums in the 1990s — he has kept up with the times. His 2017 album In It to Win It featured guests T.I., Wiz Khalifa, Lalah Hathaway and Snoop Dogg, who allegedly gave him the nickname Uncle Charlie. Just this month, two singles from the album, "Chills" and "I'm Blessed," hit No. 1 on Billboard's Adult R&B and Hot Gospel Songs charts.
5:30 p.m.-7 p.m.
David Byrne arrives at Jazz Fest following the March release of American Utopia and in the middle of a tour that takes him from Argentina to Zagreb, Croatia. He's explored diverse musical interests and been predictably unpredictable since Talking Heads broke up in 1991. Following projects with Brian Eno, Fatboy Slim (a soundtrack for a musical about Imelda Marcos) and St. Vincent, American Utopia is his first solo album in 14 years. On it, his voice rises over an amalgamation of strains of many of his past projects, including world beats, industrial sounds, pattering keyboards and synth pop reminiscent of the Talking Heads' hits. Byrne seems to take a cue from Lou Reed in almost talking the lyrics on the offbeat and politically despondent "Gasoline and Dirty Sheets," but the there's a bouyant sense of optimism to American Utopia, even if it gets corny on "Every Day is a Miracle." In another ongoing project titled Reasons to be Cheerful, Byrne collects and shares positive news and inspirational stories. American Utopia seems to share that mission in spirit. Byrne performed a few Talking Heads favorites at his recent appearance at Coachella, but after American Utopia debuted at No. 3 on Billboard's Top 200 album chart, he likely feels confident audiences will follow wherever his whims lead him.
WWOZ Jazz Tent
5:40 p.m.-7 p.m.
Guitarist and singer George Benson reached his widest audiences with the pop and R&B albums Breezin' and Give Me the Night. He started his career in jazz, playing with artists from Miles Davis to Dr. Lonnie Smith, but his talents and rich voice eclipsed genre labels, and in the 1970s and 1980s much of his work simultaneously climbed pop, R&B and jazz charts. He recorded notable covers of "On Broadway" and "The Greatest Love of All" (long before Whitney Houston took possession of it). His hits also include "Turn Your Love Around,""Love All the Hurt Away" and "This Masquerade." Benson had to cancel a 2017 Jazz Fest appearance, but returns for a set in the Jazz Tent.
5:45 p.m.-7 p.m.
In his five-decade career, British guitarist, keyboardist and singer John Mayall has worked alongside an all-star list of blues and rock stars, including Eric Clapton, John McVie, Mick Fleetwood, Mick Taylor, Jack Bruce and others. Mayall made a last minute appearance at the 2016 Jazz Fest when Jonny Lang was unable to appear. Louisiana had been on Mayall's mind. His 2014 album A Special Life featured CJ Chenier on accordion, including on a cover of Clifton Chenier's "Why Did You Go Last Night." They also recorded Lafayette bluesman Sonny Landreth's "Speak of the Devil.