To further promote the Blues heritage of Baton Rouge, the Baton Rouge Blues Foundation has partnered with several organizations to provide a variety of blues events in conjunction with the festival. Mark your calendars!
Not familiar with everyone on the lineup? On April 3 from 6 to 9 p.m., Radio Bar will host a Listening Party with Dan "The Professor" Mitchum of WHYR's Saturday Night Juke Joint. While mingling with your fellow blues enthusiasts, check out a sneak peek of this year's merchandise. $20 gets you a Baton Rouge Blues Foundation membership for a year and either an Abita draft beer or a Captain's Beard cocktail on us!
For the second year in a row, Forum 35, Dialogue on Race Louisiana, and the Baton Rouge Blues Foundation will bring together a panel of local blues artists and industry experts to give you "a little somethin' extra" prior to the festival. The goal of the BR Blues Fest Lagniappe is to give you an intimate look into the impression that the blues and Louisiana culture has had on our native artists. Our featured guests are James Johnson, Kenny Neal, Doug Gay and the Blues Project, and Dan "The Professor" Mitchum. You will have the opportunity to hear the guests speak, play, and explain why they are empowered to express their passion through song. We'll close out the event with a Q&A session between you and the artists, and we may even get them to do an impromptu jam session! This event is free.
Featuring Henry Gray, Big Luther Kent, Kenny Neal, James Johnson, Brian Romano, John Gray, Oscar Harpo Davis, The Chris LeBlanc Band, Jonathon "Boogie" Long and the Blues Revolution, Stephanie Alexander, Bobby Campo, Chris Belleau, John Dutwiler, M.J. and the Redeemers, Ryan Patterson and more! $20 cover gets you a Baton Rouge Blues Society membership and all you can eat food. This will be a non-smoking event.
Presented by the Downtown Business Association, Live After Five will host Jonathon "Boogie" Long in downtown Baton Rouge's Town Square. The family-friendly event is free and open to the public from 5 to 8 p.m.
The Baton Rouge Blues Foundation will host a Rent Party featuring Brother Dege & The Brethren. Rent parties originated in 1920s Harlem to raise money for musicians as a means to pay the rent. This pre-festival party will be held in the Prince Hall Masonic Temple, host to legendary performers such as Cab Calloway, Fats Waller, Louis Armstrong and Duke Ellington. Doors open at 7 p.m., the show starts at 8 p.m. and runs through 10 p.m. Tickets are $40/person or $70/per couple and can be purchased here. Complimentary beverages along with food by Susan Strange Catering and Hello Sushi will be provided. Proceeds benefit the Baton Rouge Blues Foundation.
Stay after the festival wraps up to catch an exclusive performance from Chris Thomas King and friends at the Hartley/Vey Studio Theatre in the Shaw Center for the Arts starting at 9:30 p.m. Admission is free.
Join the Blues Festival & Foundation at Capital City Grill Downtown for brunch, featuring blues & BBQ specials, on Sunday April 13 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. with special guest Kenny Acosta on the patio.
Still want more blues? The Arts Council of Greater Baton Rouge will feature Larry Garner for the April 13 Sunday in the Park from 2 to 5 p.m. in Town Square. The event is free and open to the public.
The 2014 Backstage at the Blues Fest, sponsored by Launch Media, will take place in the Old State Capitol Senate Chambers throughout the day. Interviews from the following performers will take place: Jeffery Broussard, Naomi Shelton, Little Freddie King, Lil Buck Sinegal, Kenny Neal and Jimmy Dotson. Get the schedule and more details here.
The Baton Rouge Blues Foundation will host a Rent Party at the Prince Hall Masonic Temple (1339 North Blvd.) on April 11, 2014. This pre-festival party will feature an exclusive, intimate performance by Brother Dege & The Brethren. Doors open at 7 p.m. and the show runs from 8 p.m. to 11 p.m. Tickets are $40/person or $70/couple.
Building on the success of the 2013 festival, the Baton Rouge Blues Foundation is pleased to announce the addition of a third stage to the 20th annual Baton Rouge Blues Festival lineup.
The Gospel/Soul Stage, located on Lafayette Street adjacent to the Shaw Center, will feature local artists Gifted Praizers, SpeakEasy, Da' Vocalairs and OMT. These performers will join the previously announced lineup of blues legends and newcomers alike, including Dr. John & The Nite Trippers, Kenny Neal with Henry Gray, Black Joe Lewis, Naomi Shelton & The Gospel Queens, Lil Freddie King, Johnny Sansone, Lil Buck Sinegal, Black Pistol Fire, Chris LeBlanc, Jeffery Broussard & The Creole Cowboys, Brother Dege & The Brethren, and Baton Rouge Music Studios.
Of the expansion, Festival chair Chris Brooks says, "We are very excited with the addition of the Gospel/Soul Stage at this year's festival. This stage will feature some of Baton Rouge's most impressive gospel and soul artists and it will allow the festival to appeal to an even larger audience. The 2014 Blues Festival has doubled in size from last year and we couldn't be happier to bring this great event to Baton Rouge."
About the Baton Rouge Blues Festival
Free and open to the public, the 2014 Baton Rouge Blues Festival will be held on April 12 from 11 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. in downtown Baton Rouge. Originating in 1981, the Baton Rouge Blues Festival is one of the oldest free blues festivals in America. Produced by the Baton Rouge Blues Foundation, the festival is made possible in part by the foundation board of directors, a volunteer Blues Festival Committee, partners and local support, as well as the following generous sponsors: City of Baton Rouge/Parish of East Baton Rouge, Miller Properties, Crescent Crown, Abita, Baton Rouge Airport, Ford, Louisiana Lottery, The Dermatology Clinic, Coca-Cola, EMCO Technologies, La Corona Familia, Piccadilly Restaurants, Downtown Radio 97.7, Manship Theatre, Lamar Advertising, Launch Media, STUN Design, WAFB, Belle of Baton Rouge, Arts Council of Greater Baton Rouge, Old State Capitol, Oxford American Magazine, Visit Baton Rouge, DIG Magazine and 225 Magazine. In order to keep the festival free, we appreciate your cooperation in supporting our vendors throughout the day and not bringing any outside food or drink. All revenue generated from the festival goes towards the mission of the Blues Foundation to help continue its goal to promote, preserve and celebrate the "Swamp Blues" music native to Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
The 2014 Baton Rouge Blues Festival is now accepting applicants for food vendors. Applications are being accepted between February 17, 2014 and March 17, 2014. Vendors will be accepted on a first come, first serve basis and at the discretion of the BRBF Committee. Click here to apply now.
A limited number of VIP tickets are now on sale! For $50, you will receive the following:
The Baton Rouge Blues Foundation proudly brings the 20th annual Baton Rouge Blues Festival to downtown Baton Rouge Saturday, April 12, 2014, from 11 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. located in Repentance Park and Galvez Plaza.
The free to the public, family-friendly festival will feature an impressive lineup of blues legends and newcomers alike, including Dr. John & The Nite Trippers, Kenny Neal with Henry Gray, Black Joe Lewis, Naomi Shelton & The Gospel Queens, Little Freddie King, Johnny Sansone, Black Pistol Fire, Chris LeBlanc, Jeffery Broussard & the Creole Cowboys, Brother Dege, and Baton Rouge Music Studios.
Of this year's lineup, Festival chair Chris Brooks says, "With our continued effort in promoting and preserving Baton Rouge's authentic sound of the Swamp Blues, the Blues Foundation is proud to present the 2014 Blues Festival lineup to the Capital City. We believe this year's diverse group of performers will give all music lovers and festival goers a unique experience unmatched by any free/open to the public festival in the United States. We invite everyone to join us April 12th in downtown Baton Rouge in celebrating our original sound of the Swamp Blues."
Four of this year's performers have previously appeared at the festival including Dr. John (1991), Kenny Neal (five-time performer), Henry Gray (15-time performer), and Chris LeBlanc (1993).
Back Stage at the Blues Fest will continue to feature interviews and informal performances in the Old State Capitol Senate chambers, providing attendees a backstage pass to discover more about participating performers. The full schedule for this will be announced at a later date.
The 2014 Baton Rouge Blues Festival is accepting new applicants for our arts vendors in the categories of painting, photography, ceramics, sculpture, glass, metal, wood, leather, mixed media, and other media. Applications will be accepted between December 1, 2013 and January 31, 2014. Click here to apply now.
By becoming a member, you can help support the festival as well as helping to promote, preserve and celebrate the Baton Rouge blues culture and bring the best of Louisiana swamp blues music to the world. Click here to join today!