Singer Joshua Ledet has been astounding audiences and viewers on the hit television series American Idol for the past few weeks, and we’re thrilled that he is still in the running! Ledet is a local of Westlake, Louisiana and a graduate of Westlake High School. Growing up he was influenced by the music of Michael Jackson, Whitney Houston, and more recently, by Fantasia Barrino. Having previously auditioned for American Idol, Ledet was thrilled to just make the first cut this year. But, his increasingly wonderful performances have kept him in the running following each of the eliminations. Currently, 19 year old Joshua is in the top 7 with a few weeks left in the competition. His soulful, classic Motown renditions have gained him specific attention and have us all hopeful that he’ll come out of Idol victorious. We’re also happy to see he’s brought some of that Hollywood South heritage with him on stage. Perhaps his most famous performance was the classic A Change is Gonna Come by Mississippi-born, Sam Cooke. Definitely check out the video of this amazing performance, and be sure to tune in and vote for this local star!
The last weekend in April and first weekend in May marks the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival. This year’s impressive line-up (which is available on their official site) includes the one and only Bonnie Raitt. Raitt rose to fame in the late 1970’s and remained there with hits like “Nick of Time” and “Something to Talk About”. Over the course of her career, this soulful American-blues singer has released more than a dozen albums. Her last album, in 2005, however marked the start of a 7 year hiatus from recording. Raitt enjoyed time off as an audience to the musical community. But, Southern Celebrity Gossip is happy to report that Bonnie is BACK with a brand new album to accompany her appearance at this year’s Jazz Fest. The new album, “Slipstream” features the soon-to-be hit single “Right Down the Line”. You can watch the video of this song on youtube. Everyone is excited for the singer’s show at Jazz Fest, and for her re-entry into writing and performing. Raitt is quoted saying, “you can be off only so long when you have this in your blood."
For more on this story, visit NOLA.com.
In a city famous for its festivals- one of biggest events is the annual Jazz Fest. This 2 weekend event features performers from around the world playing their music all across New Orleans. The line-up generally features over 100 performers, with a great majority being those who are originally from Louisiana. 2011’s Fest was yet another huge success and drew in a crowd of over 400,000 people! We’re confident that 2012 has just as much to offer!
And the performers are…
Trombone Shorty, Eagles, Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers, Foo Fighters, Zac Brown Band, TBA, John Mayer, The Neville Brothers, Al Green, Herbie Hancock, Ne-Yo, My Morning Jacket, Bon Iver, Paulina Rubio, Jill Scott, Florence + the Machine, Allen Toussaint, Feist, Bunny Wailer, Bonnie Raitt, Irma Thomas, Maze featuring Frankie Beverly, Dr. John, Janelle Monae, Yolanda Adams, Iron and Wine, Pete Fountain, Rodrigo y Gabriela, Steel Pulse, Rebirth Brass Band, Grace Potter & the Nocturnals, Esperanza Spalding, funky Meters, Levon Helm Band with special guest Mavis Staples, Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings, Aaron Neville, Steve Earle, Galactic, Preservation Hall Jazz Band 50th Anniversary Jam, Little Anthony and The Imperials, Ani DiFranco, Givers, Kermit Ruffins & the Barbecue Swingers, Dianne Reeves, Irvin Mayfield & the New Orleans Jazz Orchestra, Better Than Ezra, Carolina Chocolate Drops, Ivan Neville's Dumpstaphunk, Bruce Hornsby, Dave Koz, The Dirty Dozen Brass Band, Gomez, Pedrito Martinez, The Bounce Shake Down feat. Big Freedia, Katey Red, Keedy Black, and DJ Poppa, Israel & New Breed, Seun Kuti & Egypt 80, Zebra, Amanda Shaw, James Cotton "Superharp" Band, Cowboy Mouth, Asleep at the Wheel, Papa Grows Funk, David Sanborn & Joey DeFrancesco, Bobby Rush, Chuck Leavell & Friends, Ellis Marsalis, Marcia Ball, Voice of the Wetlands All Stars, John Boutté, Gary Clark Jr., Texas Tornados, Poncho Sanchez Latin Band with Terence Blanchard, Cheikh Lô (Senegal), Tab Benoit, Regina Carter's "Reverse Thread", Bombino (Niger), Glen Hansard, Big Sam's Funky Nation, Jeremy Davenport, Sara Jarosz, Bonerama, Evelyn Turrentine-Agee, Terri Lyne Carrington's Mosaic, Ruby Wilson's Tribute to Bessie Smith & Ma Rainey, Wycliffe Gordon, Donald Harrison, Lindigo & Fixi (Reunion Island & France), Sonny Landreth, Buckwheat Zydeco, Soul Rebels, The Stars of Heaven, Jewel Brown with the Heritage Hall Band, Rockin' Dopsie, Jr. & the Zydeco Twisters, Anders Osborne, Honey Island Swamp Band, Theresa Andersson, John Mooney & Bluesiana, Eric Lindell, Walter "Wolfman" Washington & the Roadmasters, BeauSoleil avec Michael Doucet, Pine Leaf Boys, James Andrews & the Crescent City Allstars, Steve Riley & the Mamou Playboys, Big Chief Bo Dollis & the Wild Magnolias, Big Chief Monk Boudreaux & the Golden Eagles, Shamarr Allen & the Underdawgs, Terrance Simien & the Zydeco Experience, Dr. Michael White & the Original Liberty Jazz Band feat. Thais Clark, Banu Gibson, Hot 8 Brass Band, Creole Wild West, George French
Phew! The festival certainly has a lot to offer. Tickets will be prices vary, and can be purchased through ticketmaster.
This full list was provided by International Business Times. You can read their article here!