Photos: Festival fills Freret Street

The annual Freret Street festival drew a large crowd on Saturday, April 6, packing the street from curb to curb between Napoleon Avenue and Soniat Street. Performers included Big Chief Monk Boudreaux, Debauche, J & the Causeways, Little Freddie King, Dwayne Dopsie & the Zydeco Hellraisers and more.

Music and art will take over Freret Street for fest on Saturday

On Saturday (March 26), the Freret Street Festival will help kick off the return of festival season in New Orleans. The  seven-block street party features live music on three stages (see the lineup below), a food court featuring top local chefs (with picnic seating at every intersection), more than 200 arts and crafts vendors, a kids’ area, and slightly used but immensely adorable dogs and cats up for adoption.  

There’s no admission charge for the festival, which can be found along Freret between Napoleon Avenue and Valmont Street. Free parking is available in a nearby lot on the corner of Magnolia and Cadiz streets. The festival can also be reached by public transit.

Photos: Annual boil celebrates musician’s legacy

On Sunday, people gathered in the 8300 block of Oak street, outside of the Maple Leaf Bar to celebrate the legacy of musician and chef Jamie Galloway with live music from the Hundred and One Runners, Billy Iuso, Papa Malie and more — plus crawfish from Seither’s Seafood and Clesi’s Catering. The event serves as a benefit for the New Orleans Musicians’ Clinic.

Loyola music students produce battle of the bands this Sunday

Six bands will battle for a spot at the Freret Street Festival at a college student-produced music festival this weekend. “Uptown Sound” will bring music, food trucks, and more to Evans Playground (5100 Lasalle Street) this Sunday, March 31. The “battle of the bands” festival is produced by a committee of dedicated music industry young professionals from Loyola University New Orleans. The goal of the event is to bring together the Uptown college community with the local residents for an energetic fun-filled day of entertainment. The competing bands are Anne Elise Hastings and her Revolving Cast of Characters, Sympathy Wizard, Colorblock, John Scott, Lonelygrrl, and Doctors. Festival goers will vote for their favorite act of the day, and the winner will perform at the Freret Street Festival on Saturday, April 6. There will be samples of Big Easy Bucha and free bags of Chee Wee’s (for the first 300 people). Beer, wine and water will be sold, and food trucks will be at the site.

Young musicians expand New Orleans’ hip-hop sound at Buku

The Buku Music + Art Project took over Mardi Gras World for a 7th year with big national names like Lana Del Ray, Dog Blood, and A$AP Rocky. The lineup, however, did not skimp on local talent across musical styles. Performers like Tristan Dufrene from the Cut Off, Thou and Kevin Gates from Baton Rouge, and $uicideboys from New Orleans, showed how Louisiana creates quality music in many contrasting genres. Malik Ninety Five and James Seville—two 23-year-old rappers from Gentilly New Orleans who also performed at the festival—are striving to show the changing definitions of the city’s hip-hop sound. Malik Ninety Five

Malik Ninety Five, who recently released his first album Tragedy Under the Sun, does not want to be limited by the traditional sound of New Orleans hip-hop.

L’Ecole Bilingue hosting its 20th annual Fête Francaise on Saturday

L’Ecole Bilingue de la Nouvelle-Orleans is presenting its 20th annual Fête Francaise on Saturday, March 23, at its Uptown campus, 821 Gen. Pershing St. Fête Française is a free outdoor festival hosted by the French immersion school at the school’s Uptown campus off of Magazine Street. Entertainment this year includes Cha Wa, Soul Brass Band, Bon Bon Vivant, Panorama Jazz Band, The Tin Men, Michot’s Melody Makers, Les Rebelles and DJ Camille Lenain, plus performances by L’Ecole Blingue students

The school’s largest fundraiser, the fête celebrates all things French and works to keep the Francophone heritage alive and well in New Orleans and Louisiana through a variety of food, music, art, dancing, children’s activities and more. To celebrate its two-decade milestone, this year’s fête will feature the largest ever selection of New Orleans’ top musicians and restaurants. Special VIP wristbands are available.

Sponsored: Friends of Lafitte Greenway and NORD Present 2019 Hike Fest

Friends of Lafitte Greenway’s 13th annual Big Hike event will be reborn as a full-on festival this year. On Saturday, March 23, “The Hike: Tunes, Tales, and Trails Festival” will bring music, food, and libations to the Greenway. Hosted in partnership with the New Orleans Recreation Development (NORD) Commission, Hike Fest will celebrate the Lafitte Greenway with an all-day lineup of live music featuring Corey Henry & the Treme Funktet, acclaimed singer Robin Barnes, TBC Brass Band, Cajun band Michot’s Melody Makers with members of Lost Bayou Ramblers, Funk Griot, and the Trombone Shorty Music Academy. Headlining the 2019 Hike Fest: Corey Henry & the Treme Funktet and Robin Barnes

The festival will also highlight the area’s food, drink, and craft vendors from along the Greenway neighborhoods, including Clesi’s Seafood, Liberty’s Kitchen, and Quintin’s Natural Ice Cream; kids activities; and the organization’s signature guided walking tours of the Greenway. During this free, family-friendly celebration, participants will also have the opportunity to share stories about the Greenway and contribute to the vision for the future of this unique public space.

Mid-City Messenger: Parks millage vote falls on a Jazz Fest weekend, worrying supporters

The special election that includes the proposal to reallocate the funding for the city’s parks and recreation facilities will take place May 4 — on the second weekend of Jazz Fest, Claire Byun reports in Mid-City Messenger, a day that many locals plan to spend listening to Galactic or Aaron Neville, not heading into the voting booth for a single issue. Bob Becker, CEO of City Park, which could get its first city funding under the measure, explained the timing to members of the Mid-City Neighborhood Organization on Monday. “There are only so many dates, and this is one agreed upon by [park leadership] and city and state officials,” Becker said.

Kristine Froeba on Washington Mardi Gras: Louisianians cross the Potomac

The movers and shakers of Louisiana including quite a bit of New Orleans, and more than a few hundred Uptowners recently descended on the nation’s capital to celebrate the annual Washington Mardi Gras. “If a bomb dropped on this ballroom tonight, Louisiana as you know it would cease to exist,” said one of the organizers at the Saturday night ball. Leaders of business, law partners, CEOs, congressmen, congresswomen, mayors, senators and the governor of Louisiana, John Bel Edwards, were all present. The yearly three-day event dates back to 1944 and has been led by the Mystick Krewe of Louisianians since 1957. “What began as a demonstration of the spirit of Mardi Gras” has grown into a celebration of Louisiana, its politics and its people,” per the krewe’s website.