Saturday, September 19, 2015

Take a Trip to the 2015 Highland Jazz & Blues Festival

Last year the Highland Jazz & Blues Festival was nearly frozen out; if you attended last year you were bundled up in many layers and probably had hot potatoes in your pockets.

This year the festival was bumped up from November to September and the weather was the other extreme -- hot and humid, but it was a glorious day nonetheless!  It was nearly perfect, actually, and any attendance that may have been missed last year was certainly made up for this year.

This is my favorite local festival, hands down, without a doubt.  This was the twelfth year and I think I may have only missed one year -- the first one, perhaps.  Not sure.

Highland is an eclectic, artsy, historic neighborhood and is filled with the most interesting people in town and they all come out to celebrate good music and to support local artists of all types.

We got there about 11:30 to stake out our spot before the noon kickoff with Buddy Flett and it was clear early on that it was going to get crowded.  There were a lot of people already gathered on the slope before the Twisted Root main stage.  Because temperatures were expected to hit the upper 90s today, we looked for shade.

Buddy Flett was in fine form and he is always a favorite.

The dancers came out early today:

We decided to scout out the food and the vendors after Buddy's set.  The vendors this year were terrific: there were maybe three jewelry vendors, a couple of artists, plenty of food vendors, and some political campaigning as well (tis the season).

Steve and I both opted for Ki Mexico; I got the chicken pablano tacos with cilantro and onions with a middle range spice and it was great!

Lucky for me, they have a brick and mortar location near my house.

There were plenty of dogs there today -- this is always a dog-friendly event.

And there was even a pig.  This is Stella; she has her own Facebook page!

The local brewery, Great Raft, was representing; I hope Flying Heart is there next year, too!

Robert Trudeau was there with a fabulous percussion group.  I did a Periscope of them; I'm not sure how long Periscope keeps video but if you have a 'Scope account you can check them out here.

They played between sets and were awesome!

The Matthew Davidson Band was performing on the Gazebo stage.  There was a lot more shade at that end of the park, which was a bonus.


There's always a Hula Hoop Girl there...

These people had the right idea with the hot sun overhead; I'm just glad I wasn't sitting behind them!

A.J. Cascio is always a crowd favorite and he had Joe Nadeau with him today.

Nobody makes the harmonica sing like AJ.

This is the mid-day crowd:

Huge, and always a great place to "people watch."

This guy was dancing all over the park and having a great time; and another Hula Hoop Girl:

On our way out I had to stop on the hill by the Gazebo stage; it's my annual homage to my friend Rocque who I always would run into at local musical events; nobody I know loved local music and loved to support local music more than he did.  He loved the classic greats, too; Rocque had seen more concerts than anyone I know and had scrapbooks filled with ticket stubs and photos from every great rock concert you could name.    Every year I stop in the same spot where I sat with Rocque one afternoon at this same festival and I raise a toast among the pines and the music to my friend who is listening from above now.

Now who should I find in that same spot today?  My friend Corina, which is totally appropriate because there is no bigger lover and supporter of local music than this chick.  Rocque would love it.  Karma is real.

And so, another Highland Jazz & Blues Fest is a success.  I ran into so many people I don't see nearly enough; this festival is the best one in Shreveport for it's mix of food, music, friends, and locale. The date change appears to be a huge success. In September, in Louisiana, you never know, but odds are you're going to get better weather than you do in November.  With the Red River Revel kicking off in the next couple of weeks, this new date seems like a good fit.

Can't wait until next year!

The SIGIS Take a Trip Series:
Take a Trip to the 2012 Defenders of Liberty Air Show at BAFB
Take a Springtime Trip to Second Hand Rose Antiques in Minden, LA
Take a Trip to Logansport, Louisiana
Take a Trip to the Lock and Dam on Red River
Take a Trip to the 2012 Barkus and Meoux Parade
Take a Christmas Shopping Trip to Second Hand Rose in Minden
Take a Trip to the Fourth Annual Barksdale AFB Oktoberfest 
Take a Trip to Grand Cane's Fifth Annual Pioneer Trade Day
Take a Trip to the 2011 Highland Jazz & Blues Festival
Take an Autumn Trip to Jefferson, Texas
Take a Fall Trip to Second Hand Rose Antiques in Minden
Take a Trip to the 8th Air Force Museum at Barksdale Air Force Base
Take a Summertime Trip to Grand Cane
Take a Trip to Desoto Parish
Take a Summer Trip to Second Hand Rose Antiques in Minden
Take a Trip to Natchitoches and Melrose Plantation 
Take a Trip to Ed Lester Farms and a Random Antique Stop
Take a Trip to the Norton Art Gallery and the Masters of Cuban Art Exhibit
Take a Trip to Natchitoches to See the Christmas Lights
Take a Trip to the Third Annual BAFB Oktoberfest 
Take a Trip to Natchitoches and Oakland Plantation

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