TVD’s French Quarter Festival Picks, Day One

In 2011, the French Quarter Festival grew more over a single weekend than it did in the previous several years. Part of the increase in crowds was the addition of Thursday for the first time. This year, they have made Thursday equal in stature to Friday with a full schedule and are calling it “Locals Lagniappe” day. Here are my picks.

Some of the best things about the French Quarter Festival include a chance to see new bands, old favorites and groups that don’t play that often around town. John Ellis (pictured) is an adopted local since he attended college here. He also has lots of local musician friends and loves to collaborate with them. So don’t miss the set by his band Double Wide at 12:30 PM on the Absolute/Louis Louis Pavilion stage. Matt Perrine will be on sousaphone and Jason Marsalis will be on drums.

Speaking of sousaphonists, Kirk Joseph is known as one of the most innovative players in the city from his work with the Dirty Dozen Brass Band. He appears with his own 504 Brass Band at 4:15 PM on the Capital One Riverside Legacy stage. I don’t know who he will have with him, but suffice it to say that they will all be first class musicians.

Papa Grows Funk closes out the Abita Beer stage, but they will have some competition for your attention from the Rebirth Brass Band. Hot on the heels of their first ever Grammy win, the band has been in fire lately. Actually they have been on fire since their formation in the early 1980s. See you there!

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