Tom Petty, Stevie Wonder, and Maroon 5 Lead Annual New Orleans Jazz Fest

The Annual New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival, taking place throughout the course of two weekends spanning April 28 – May 7, have just announced an absolutely loaded bill for their upcoming spring event. The New Orleans Fair Grounds Racetrack will play host as a plethora of acclaimed artists take the stage.

The poster for this year’s NO Jazz Fest is nothing short of impressive. Spanning everything from local New Orleans’ jazz and funk, to country, hip-hop and jam bands, the organizers have truly considered all tastes in creating this year’s program. The standout artists at the top of the bill include Stevie Wonder, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, Maroon 5, Dave Matthews with Tim Reynolds, Kings of Leon, Usher, The Roots, Harry Connick Jr., Meghan Trainor, Snoog Dogg, Lorde, Alabama Shakes and Pitbull.

The rest of the lineup is best broken down into categories, as it’s quite extensive. Add to the list of jam bands Trey Anastasio Band and Widespread Panic. In the funk realm Ivan Neville’s Dumpstaphunk, Galactic, Big Sam’s Funky Nation, Earth, Wind & Fire and The Meters lead the way. Local legends include Trombone Short & Orleans Avenue, Dr. John, Jon Batiste and Stay Human, Big Freedia and a tribute to the late Buckwheat Zydeco. Country artists Darius Rucker and Margo Price, Patti Labelle, Leon Bridges, Amos Lee and Corinne Bailey Rae will take care of covering soul while Elle King, Nas with guests The Soul Rebels, Buddy Guy, Wilco, Kenny Wayne Shepard Band, George Benson, Irma Thomas, Blues Traveler and Johnny Lang round out another solid portion of the lineup. Five hundred artists overall will perform throughout the dual weekend.

Music isn’t the only thing being represented this year. Crafts will have their place as well by way of The Congo Square African Marketplace, The Louisiana Marketplace and a section devoted to contemporary crafts. Food is arguably the lifeblood of the South, particularly in New Orleans where food culture is everything. Just perusing through the food list will activate parts of your salivary glands that you didn’t even know existed. Prepare yourself for dishes like grilled chicken liver with pepper jelly, shrimp remoulade po-boy and pheasant, quail and andouille gumbo. Don’t skimp on the beignets either.

When you’re not in the festival proper, you will most likely be in the French Quarter to drink, eat and mingle, so why not make this area your official home during your stay. Hotel le Marais is in the heart of The French Quarter and is replete with hues of purple, one of the colors that embodies the New Orleans spirit. It’s chic, it’s modern and it’s where you want to be. The Catahoula Hotel is a boutique townhouse turned cozy hotel with impeccable hospitality. Conversely, The Hotel Modern is a neon drenched contemporary hotspot with art at the forefront. Alongside all the amenities you could want, The Hotel Modern has managed to blend antique furniture with eclectic design to create a totally unique atmosphere.

The New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival will take place the weekends of April 28 – May 7. Tickets can be purchased on the official site.