• Mississippi River from the Bluffs of Natchez

    Natchez

    National Historical Park Mississippi

Free Jazz Concert on Natchez Bluff

May 7th Jazz Concert--Bruce Barnes
NPS Photo

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News Release Date: May 3, 2012
Contact: Jennifer Clemetson, 601-445-5347

NATCHEZ, MS-To kick off National Travel & Tourism Week, Natchez National Historical Park and the Natchez Convention & Visitors Bureau invite the public to join New Orleans Jazz National Historical Park Rangers Bruce "Sunpie" Barnes and Matt Hampsey at the Natchez Bluff Gazebo on Broadway Street on Monday, May 7th at 7:00 p.m. for a FREE performance of songs from the recently released CD project "Songs of the Lower Mississippi Delta". At 6:00pm, prior to the concert, Natchez National Historical Park Guide Steve Don will present a program on the Civil War in Natchez at the Gazebo.Bring your lawn chairs, blankets, and picnic.A reception will be hosted by the Natchez Convention & Visitors Bureau.


Joining Matt and Bruce will be acoustic bassist Jen Maurer, fiddler Gina Forsyth, and special guests Sam Rettman on rub board and harmonica. The concert will feature Civil War songs, old time fiddle songs, spirituals, delta blues, Cajun, and zydeco music.


After a short stint playing in the NFL, Bruce "Sunpie" Barnes realized his lifelong dream of becoming a park ranger while continuing his passion for music. As a park ranger for Jean Lafitte NHP & Preserve and the New Orleans Jazz NHP, Bruce has been able to combine his love of nature and music in a unique setting. Bruce plays accordion, harmonica, and sings while also leading the band Sunpie & the Louisiana Sunspots based out of New Orleans, but performs on the international stage.


Park Ranger and soulful guitarist Matt Hampsey is well versed in many styles including jazz, gospel, and slide guitar. He is a former member of the Marine Band and graduate of the University of New Orleans Jazz Studies Program. Matt has played music professionally in New Orleans for the last 21 years and has worked at the New Orleans Jazz NHP for the last 12 years.


Bassist and vocalist Jen Maurer is the leader of the critically acclaimed zydeco band Mo' Mojo. Jen also plays button accordion, flute, piano, and guitar while continuing to be a prolific songwriter.


Gina Forsyth has played fiddle for many years in the Bruce Daigrepont Cajun Band but has also released albums under her own name, writing all her music, playing guitar and singing.Guest musician Sam Rettman will be featured on an old time harmonica tune as well play the rub board.


In the event of rain, the concert and Civil War talk will move tothe Natchez Visitor Center Auditorium at 640 South Canal Street.


For more information about these free programs or other activities at Natchez National Historical Park, including Melrose and the William Johnson House, please call 601-446-5790.You can also visit our website at www.nps.gov/natc for more information. Be sure to check under the online "Schedule of Events."

Did You Know?

Sunset falls upon southwest Mississippi

Natchez is one of four Mississippi cities that have bridges over the Mississippi River. The other three are Vicksburg, Greenville and Tunica.