The 10th Annual Congo Square Rhythms Festival returns Saturday and Sunday, 3/18–3/19

You know spring is upon us in New Orleans when the fine folks at the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Foundation kick off their free festival series. This is where your Jazz Fest dollars are spent, so come out and hear some great music. The full schedule is here.

Start your day on Saturday with Cole Williams. This dynamic performer has only lived in New Orleans for a short time, but she’s fully integrated her music and life into the Crescent City. Need proof? I saw her set at the Krewe Delusion ball and she put on show like she was in front of thousands of people when there was only handful of revelers in the room.

Another highlight on Saturday will be James Andrews and the Crescent City Allstars with special guests John Boutte and Sharon Martin. James and John are sons of Tremé and that’s where it all began. Congo Square, as most readers know, is located in the Tremé neighborhood.

Another fun part of the Congo Square Rhythms Festival that has become a tradition is the Mardi Gras Indian Battle. Since Sunday is St. Joseph’s Day expect the participating tribes to be really amped up anticipating the second biggest holiday on the black Indian calendar.

Sunday’s schedule is action packed as well. I am particularly excited for the last two acts. Corey Henry (pictured at top) has been mostly on the road with Galactic over the last several years, but I have it on good authority (from the trombonist himself) that he is now really focusing on his band, the Tremé Funket. Expect some serious high energy jams.

Of course the last act of the day is the Rebirth Brass Band. These Grammy winners never fail to blow it out for the hometown folks in the neighborhood where the founders grew up. See you there!

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