Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue will go virtual for the band’s first performance since the COVID-19 pandemic began.
While the pandemic continues to pause the live music industry in New Orleans, Trombone Shorty puts a virtual spin on his annual Shorty Fest music event set for Sept. 26.
The free virtual event will also feature performances from Galactic, Anders Osborne, Tank and the Bangas, The Soul Rebels, plus students from the Trombone Shorty Academy and other special guests.
Prior to the pandemic, Shorty Fest was originally scheduled to take place in April at Tipitina’s, sandwiched in between the two Jazz Fest weekends. Now, Virtual Shorty Fest will stream for a national audience starting at 8 p.m. on the Trombone Shorty Foundation website, Trombone Shorty Facebook and Youtube page
“We really need Shorty Fest right now, and our determination to pass on our precious musical culture to the younger generation has never been more important,” said Bill Taylor, Executive Director of the Trombone Shorty Foundation.
The foundation says its mission of transforming young lives through music education and mentorship while preserving the city’s cultural heritage is “more important now than ever,” according to a release announcing the event.
Organizers want the event to offer “a glimmer of hope” at a time when the New Orleans music community faces financial strain with live performances still banned during the pandemic.
“When I was young, I learned from musical legends in my neighborhood, Treme,” said founder and namesake Troy “Trombone Shorty” Andrews. “I wanted to start this foundation to give young musicians the same opportunities that New Orleans gave me. The challenges are real right now, but we know that our music, culture and community will see us through, and Virtual Shorty Fest will honor how important that is.”
Donations to the Trombone Shorty Foundation can be made by visiting www.paypal.me/shortyfoundation or texting “give” to (504) 509-5010. All proceeds from the event support the foundation’s educational programs, which keep students learning and musicians working
For more information on Shorty Fest, visit the website.