Festival International de Louisiane has released its 2019 concert lineup. This year’s artists will include Dobet Gnahoré (Ivory Coast), Moonlight Benjamin (Haiti), and the United States’ master of funk pedal steel guitar: Robert Randolph & the Family Band.
The 33rd-year’s program includes international performers representing 24 different countries and regions, combining new artists with some returning favorites.
“We searched high and low to find a perfect balance of traditional and contemporary sounds, so there is something for everyone this year,” said Festival International Programming Director Lisa Stafford.
“Sudan will be represented at Festival for the first time ever with Alsarah and the Nubatones,” Stafford added. “Mozambique-influenced artist Gato Preto will also be making waves. I can’t wait to see these groups in person!”
Also new to the festival this year are El Septeto Santiaguero, of Cuba; and Doctor Nativo, of Guatemala. Returning this year, by popular demand, will be New Brunswick’s Les Hôtesses d’Hilaire (AKA the “super-talented and hilarious Québécois man in a dress”).
As usual, Festival International focuses on bringing in French-speaking musicians to share their language and diverse cultures with Lafayette. This year, the artists the francophone countries featured include Haiti (Moonlight Benjamin and Boukman Eksperyans), Niger (Mdou Moctar) and France (Bagad Plougastell and Akalé Wubé).
The bill for Louisiana’s homegrown artists includes The Blue Monday Allstars’ Living Legends Tribute will bring the talent of Carol Fran, Henry Gray and Lil’ Buck Sinegal onto one stage to share the light they have cast onto music lovers for decades. Joining this once-in-a-lifetime set will be special guests: Smokehouse Porter & Miss Mamie; Marc Broussard; Lee Allen Zeno; Steve Adams; Tony Goulas; Kent August; Ron Eades and much more.
“It is a rare chance to see all of these legends in one place,” said Festival International Executive Director Scott Feehan. “Lafayette’s music scene is very powerful, and it is exciting to pull all of these musicians together to celebrate their success with the community.”
Other local favorites to catch during Festival International are Keith Frank & the Soileau Zydeco Band, Lane Mack & The Balladeers and Steve Riley and the Mamou Playboys. New Orleans will also be sharing its talent with Lafayette as it welcomes Cha Wa as well as Tank & the Bangas.
More information at www.festivalinternational.org/2019-artists.