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jazz fest boxed set


Since it’s founding by George Wein 50 years ago, the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival—or Jazz Fest—has represented one of the defining celebrations of American music. Over those 50 years, pretty much everybody who’s anybody has performed on one of their stages. So how do you choose who to include in a boxed set? And how do you capture the feeling of Jazz Fest on the printed page?


The producer (and Folkways archivist) Jeff Place made the wise decision to focus on New Orleans-area artists who've been recorded live at the Festival. Luckily, there was also a treasure trove of great photography to accompany the music and give a sense of the experience of being on the festival grounds. As Tom Moon on NPR’s All Things Considered put it, “…if you’ve never been to the Jazz & Heritage Festival, this rollicking, spirited celebration of living, breathing music history shows you exactly what you’ve been missing.”

Available on the Smithsonian Folkways website.