Swag's Jazzfest FAQ - Evenings & Off Days

Are there any official Evening concerts?

Since 2005, there are no official fest evening shows.

What else is there to do at night?

There are many, many excellent bands of all genres that will be playing at the various clubs around town.  The world-famous Neen -Swag - Chris Grids have comprehensive night-by-night listings, or if you're into the jam band scene, also check Jammin at Jazzfest

  • Piano Night is an annual benefit for WWOZ featuring a few dozen of New Orleans' top keyboard players. It's alwats on the Monday evening after the first weekend. The last few years, it's been at the House of Blues.
  • Also on that same Monday Evening, Tipitinas hosts Instruments a Comin', 10 hours of New Orleans funk, brass, and rock to raise money to buy instruments for students in New Orleans school music programs.
  • Tuesday is the annual Threadhead "Patry", and all-day affair of music, crawfish, food and drink.
  • On Wednesday, check out the Wednesday at the Square free concert in Lafayette Square, downtown. It runs from 5pm till 7:30. Check http://wednesdayatthesquare.com/ for this year's performer.

Besides Concerts and Festivals?

Spend some time just wandering up and down the Spectacle that is Bourbon Street.   Stop in to Pat O'Briens for one (or more) of their world famous Hurricanes.  Try to get into the Piano Bar there, or else just hang out in the Courtyard.

Stroll through French Quarter to Jackson Square.  Feel the ghosts in the night air.  Have a cafe au lait at the Cafe Du Monde.  Walk the levee along the mighty Mississippi from there to the Riverwalk.

Take a dinner and jazz cruise on one of the riverboats (Creole / Cajun Queen or the Natchez).

If you want to get out on the river, but are short on time or bucks, try the ferry.   It leaves every 15-30 minutes from the foot of Canal Street - look for stairs leading up - and crosses the river to the West Bank in 5-10 minutes.  It's now $2 each way for pedestrians, and no reservations or tickets are needed.  Figure 30-45 minutes round trip, give or take, depending on the wait for the boat. Or walk a few blocks on the West Bank and have a drink at the Old Point Bar before returning downtown.

Restaurant recommendations?

This site has been getting a lot of traffic lately, so I've decided it's best not to name individual restaurants.  The crowds and lines are bad enough without me sending additional hordes their way, to stand in line in front of me! 

For many of New Orleans' most famous restaurants, advance reservations are required.   For Jazzfest, if you wait until you get to town, they will be booked.  I'd suggest reserving when you book your airfare, a couple of months in advance. 

No reservations?  No problem.  If you're willing to wait (maybe an hour or so), there are many, many great meals to be had at lesser known places.


Page last updated May 6, 2014