March Madness Music Festival

March Madness Music Festival

March Madness Music Festival

WOLDENBERG PARK, NEW ORLEANS | APR 1- 3

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Arcade Fire

Arcade Fire

Emerging from Montreal, Canada in the early 2000s, Arcade Fire quickly earned a reputation for transcendent live shows that brought arena-size ambition to stages of all sizes. By the close of the tour supporting its 2004 debut album Funeral — widely hailed as one of the best and most important albums of the 2000s — Arcade Fire’s live experience was already raising thousands of voices in ecstatic unison nightly—while the band found itself sharing stages with the likes of U2 and David Bowie.

Titled in tribute to the memories of family members, Funeral’s cathartic confrontation of tragedy and life-affirming celebration of love, hope and band members’ Haitian roots has only grown in stature over the years. The album has been named the #1 album of the ‘00s by Rolling Stone, and has topped Best of the Decade lists around the world including NME, Q, Pitchfork, The Guardian, Mojo, Spin, Consequence, Paste and more. Subsequent Arcade Fire albums Neon Bible, The Suburbs, Reflektor and Everything Now have earned the band three #1 albums worldwide, nine GRAMMY nominations (including a 2011 Album of the Year win for The Suburbs), four Juno awards (including three for Album of the Year), a BRIT Best International Album award, as well as an Academy Award nomination for the original score to the feature film HER.

WE, the sixth Arcade Fire album is made up of seven songs that speak to this moment with unique directness. Written, recorded, and released during a critical historical juncture, they are divided into two distinct sides, “I” and “WE.” If the “I” side of the record evokes and embodies our holed-up anxiety and lack of physical connection, the “WE” side captures the excitement of new possibilities and the elevating thrill of committing to one another socially and personally. Produced by Nigel Godrich, Win & Régine, WE is a 40 minute epic as much about the forces that threaten to pull us away from the people we love, as it is inspired by the urgent need to overcome them.


Preservation Hall Jazz Band

Preservation Hall Jazz Band

At a moment when musical streams are crossing with unprecedented frequency, it’s crucial to remember that throughout its history, New Orleans has been the point at which sounds and cultures from around the world converge, mingle, and resurface, transformed by the Crescent City’s inimitable spirit and joie de vivre. Nowhere is that idea more vividly embodied than in the Preservation Hall Jazz Band, which has held the torch of New Orleans music aloft for more than 50 years, all the while carrying it enthusiastically forward as a reminder that the history they were founded to preserve is a vibrantly living history.

PHJB marches that tradition forward once again on So It Is, the septet’s second release featuring all-new original music. The album redefines what New Orleans music means today by tapping into a sonic continuum that stretches back to the city’s Afro-Cuban roots, through its common ancestry with the Afrobeat of Fela Kuti and the Fire Music of Pharoah Sanders and John Coltrane, and forward to cutting-edge artists with whom the PHJB have shared festival stages from Coachella to Newport, including legends like Stevie Wonder, Elvis Costello and the Grateful Dead and modern giants like My Morning Jacket, Arcade Fire and the Black Keys.


Rusty Lazer

Rusty Lazer

Rusty Lazer is a DJ, Producer, Artist Manager and Non-Profit founder who has called New Orleans home since 2000, when he arrived with little but his drums and a lifelong love for playing every kind of music available. In the upheaval after Katrina, he transitioned from drumming in five bands to playing alone as a DJ, and soon after he began touring with and managing bounce legends Big Freedia and Nicky Da B. His sets are “a sweaty, mega-mix crash course in the sound of New Orleans”, and travel from the songs of his adopted city out into genres extending beyond generational and geographic limits. In addition to his work as an artist, he co-founded New Orleans Airlift in 2008 and joined in the creation of its flagship project, Music Box Village, where he continues to work today to create opportunities for New Orleans artists to engage with the world through collaboration and exchange.

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