The 17th annual Natchitoches Jazz / R&B Festival will be held on March 30-31, 2012 on the downtown riverbank in Natchitoches and will have’hall of fame” flair to it. The festival will kick off Friday afternoon with “free Friday” meaning that there will be no admission. There will be several bands performing on Friday evening. Admission on Saturday will be $8.00 in advance and $10.00 at the gate for adults, $4.00 in advance and $5.00 at the gate for students and children 12 and under get in free.

The year's festival will be headlined by rock & roll hall of fame group The Family Stone. The Family Stone originated in the San Francisco Bay area in 1967 and went on to become one of the most popular groups of the late 60’s and early 70’s. The group stroke gold with such million selling hits such as “Dance to the Music,’ (I want to take you) Higher”, “It’s a Family Affair”, “Sing a Simple Song”, and many more. Although Sly no longer performs with The Family Stone, the band’s supercharged set combines elements of jazz, R&B, rock & roll, and funk to create and amazing concert experience. The year 2012 marks the 50th anniversary of the formation of The Rolling Stones.

Another highlight to the musical lineup is ‘The Rolling Stones’ tribute band Satisfaction. If you can’t catch The Stones show live, seeing Satisfaction is about as close as you can come. Led by Chris LeGrand, Satisfaction has the Stone’s look, sound, and feel down to a “T” and will have everyone singing along.

‘The Louisiana Music Hall of Fame Bayou Bicentennial Caravan,’ which is traveling the state spotlighting Louisiana music, will be partnering with the Natchitoches Jazz / R&B Festival to present the Caravan for this area. The Louisiana Music Hall of Fame is holding a series of concerts around the state this year known as the ‘Bayou Bicentennial Music Caravan”. The Caravan will celebrate the music of Louisiana by spotlighting Louisiana artists and/or songs that feature the state. Natchitoches group Johnny Earthquake and the Moondogs will be the backing the Caravan.

‘We're excited to be bringing the Bayou Bicentennial Music Caravan to the Natchitoches Jazz / R&B Festival,” said Hall of Fame president and executive director Mike Shepherd. “We are happy to have a band of the Moondogs stature as our “house” band and plan to bring in artists who will spotlight several different genres of Louisiana music. It will be an amazing show.”

During the festival, the Louisiana Music Hall of Fame will be inducting two new members, who will be announced later.

Also, much of the area’s most popular groups will be performing, including Hardrick Rivers, LukeJazz, Becky Birdwell & Roadhouse, D.C. & the Zydeco Country Boyz, Doc Country & The Natchitoches All Stars, The LaCour Brothers and more.

On Saturday, in addition to the music on multiple stages, there will be lots of great food and activities for kids. As festival co-chairman Layne Miller put it, ‘The star of the show has always been the downtown Natchitoches river bank, absolutely the best music venue on Earth.” As usual, the festival will offer something for every musical taste. ‘We will have everything from zydeco, to country, to jazz, to R&B, to rock & roll, to blue grass, to funk, to blues, and everything in between.’

“I can’t imagine that a music lover could come to this festival and not find something that he or she likes,’ Miller continued. “It’s a family event and we’ve tried to keep it affordable so everyone can attend.”

For more information concerning the 2012 Natchitoches Jazz / R & B Festival, follow this link to or call the Natchitoches Area CVB at (800) 259-1714.

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