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Viewpoint: The Best Music Festival of 2019 Will be in New Orleans

The 50th anniversary should be an absolute blowout.

What makes the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival the best U.S. music event this year? It’s simple: an ingenious combination of cultural tradition,  amazing performers, and some of the best southern food money can buy.

While I have not had the honor of attending this festival, I have been to the Big Easy, and boy do they know how to party.

Whoever said, “less is more” clearly has not been to the Jazz Fest or New Orleans for that matter. This year’s lineup — the festival’s 50th anniversary — includes oodles of big names, like The Rolling Stones, Dave Matthews Band, Katy Perry, Jimmy Buffet and The Coral Reefer Band, Chris Stapleton, Diana Ross, Pitbull, Santana, Van Morrison, John Fogerty, Al Green, Earth Wind & Fire, Logic, Ciara, The Revivalists, The Head and the Heart, Leon Bridges, Gladys Knight, Alanis Morissette, The Doobie Brothers, Indigo Girls and Jerry Lee Lewis.

I don’t know about you all, but I’m most looking forward to seeing my parents’ favorite boy band, The Rolling Stones’ performance. Whoever you are into, there’s a little something for the whole family to enjoy in the 2019 Jazz Fest lineup. 

Spread across two weekends (April 25-28 and May 2-5), the festival is a haven for a foodie who wants some authentic Cajun cooking. With ten food areas, festival goers can gorge on authentic Louisiana State fare from Jambalaya to Po-Boys. They even serve Alligator Pie.

Performers will be spread across the festival site at Heritage Square, right in the heart of the French Quarter, playing on music stages or performance tents.

The New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival is one of the oldest in the country, dating to 1970. The city of New Orleans is most known for its raucous and inebriating Mardi Gras, but this festival proves that New Orleans has much more to offer than a drunk weekend for your friend’s bachelorette party (which was my first experience with the city).

This community-based festival is warm and unpretentious compared to the flashy Coachella or overblown Burning Man. 

If you obsess over singers and bands, and are one of those people who make a playlist for every occasion, join CMN’s Music Journalism Course and get real-time experience, intense feedback on your writing, exposure to music industry insiders, and a great place to display build your portfolio. Get all the details on the Music Journalism Course here.

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