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Bruce Springsteen Headlines Jazz Fest

  • Doug Levine

Bruce Springsteen performs with Steven Van Zandt and the E-street band April 17, 2012, in Cleveland. Max Weinberg plays the drums.

Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band are set to headline the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival on April 29.

It’s been six years since Springsteen made his first appearance at Jazz Fest. New Orleans was still reeling from Hurricane Katrina which had devastated much of the city eight months earlier. His latest excursion marks the festival debut of Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band, who acknowledge New Orleans on the lead single from their new album, “Wrecking Ball.”

Springsteen’s world tour features a five-piece horn section and saxophonist Jake Clemons, nephew of the late E Street Band member Clarence Clemons.

“We’re thrilled that Bruce Springsteen still has New Orleans in his heart and that he’s coming back to play Jazz Fest with the E Street Band,” said festival director Quint Davis.

The top attractions on this year’s roster lean more toward classic rock, with appearances by Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers, The Eagles, Bonnie Raitt, Jimmy Buffett, and the 50th Anniversary Reunion of the Beach Boys. Herbie Hancock and Al Green will be there, as well as hometown favorites Allen Toussaint, Irma Thomas, Pete Fountain, Trombone Shorty, The Neville Brothers and Dr. John.

Many of the performers hail from Louisiana, so there will be plenty of local Cajun, country, zydeco, gospel, folk and blues, as well as a wide selection of jazz, featuring David Sanborn, Terence Blanchard, Ellis Marsalis, Terri Lyne Carrington, The Preservation Hall Jazz Band, Dr. Michael White, Poncho Sanchez and his Latin Band. There will also be tributes to Bessie Smith, Ma Rainey and Louis Armstrong.

The 43rd Annual New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival will run from April 27 - 29, and again from May 3 - 6.