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Arts Services Initiative of WNY: 'The Big Easy in Buffalo' 9th annual 'Mardi Gras Jam'


Mon, Feb 1st 2016 11:40 am

Debut of Snow Stroll Parade Feb. 5-6 at Buffalo Iron Works, Cobblestone District

Part of 'Buffalo Winter Weekends'

Arts Services Initiative of Western New York announced details for the "The Big Easy in Buffalo" ninth annual "Mardi Gras Jam," taking place Friday, Feb. 5, at Buffalo Iron Works.

Headlining the show is The Marc Stone Band, featuring Chuck Campbell of The Campbell Brothers. They'll be joined by local favorites The Heavenly Chillbillies, as well as a special New Orleans-inspired performance from students at Kenmore East High School.

Tickets are $15 in advance or $20 at the door, and are available at the club or at http://www.ticketfly.com/event/1030957.

Singer-songwriter-guitarist Stone and pianist Joshua Paxton return to Buffalo to headline the Jam after appearing at Canalside last summer opening for Get the Led Out. A fixture at the festivals and premier venues in New Orleans, and a seasoned touring artist in Europe, Stone came up playing on the streets and in the bands of blues, funk and zydeco legends to become one of the most respected contemporary blues and roots artists on the Crescent City scene. He is also a popular radio host with listeners around the world. 2016 marks Stone's 16th year as a blues DJ and programmer on legendary New Orleans jazz and heritage station WWOZ 90.7-FM (www.wwoz.org).

In addition to his band featuring Paxton, Stone will be joined onstage by guitarist Campbell of the world-famous sacred steel band The Campbell Brothers. Opening the show will be local "booze-infused blues and Americana" band The Heavenly Chillbillies, and a band of Kenmore East students who are studying New Orleans music.

"We're happy to give both local professional and student musicians an opportunity to network with and learn from these New Orleans artists," ASI Executive Director Tod A. Kniazuk said. "We always try to get a jam going at this concert, and this year we know it's going to happen with Marc and Chuck joining forces."

The "Big Easy in Buffalo" is also teaming up with Slow Roll Buffalo for the first-ever Snow Stroll Parade on Saturday, Feb. 6. This "pedal & pedestrian parade" will gather at 4 p.m. at Buffalo Iron Works with a free concert from Buffalo Brass Machine, and then step off at 4:30 p.m. for a walk through the Cobblestone and Canalside districts (less than a mile). No registration is needed and all are welcome for this free event.

Individuals and groups are encouraged to bring banners or flags, wear costumes or uniforms that represent their group, or just generally show up and walk (or bike very slowly). On Fat Tuesday, Feb. 9, "The Big Easy in Buffalo" is programming a special Mardi Gras playlist for the skaters on The Ice @ Canalside. All three events are part of "Buffalo Winter Weekends" (www.buffalowinterweekends.com).

The "Big Easy in Buffalo" is a program of ASI, started in 2007 by Kniazuk initially as a way to expose area audiences to this important American music and provide opportunities to New Orleans bands in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. The centerpiece of the series is the annual "Mardi Gras Jam," which takes place the Friday before Fat Tuesday. More details on the series can be found at www.thebigeasyinbuffalo.org.

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