Aretha Franklin, Dave Matthews Band, James Taylor, Diana Krall, Billy Joel and the Neville Brothers are among the stellar line-up of performers booked for...

Aretha Franklin, Dave Matthews Band, James Taylor, Diana Krall, Billy Joel and the Neville Brothers are among the stellar line-up of performers booked for the 40th anniversary of the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival from April 24-26 and April 30-May 3. The festival is returning to its original seven-day format over two weekends after being scaled back to six days after New Orleans was flooded from Hurricane Katrina in 2005.

Also set to perform are Stevie Wonder, Tony Bennett, Wynton Marsalis, Jimmy Buffett, Bonnie Raitt, Kings of Leon, The O’Jays, Sugarland, Pete Fountain, Erykah Badu, Joe Cocker, Ben Harper, Earth Wind and Fire, Wilco, Tim McGraw, Santana, the Harlem Blues and Jazz Band and many others.

General admission tickets remain unchanged from last year: $40 if purchased in advance and $50 at the gate; tickets for children age 2 to 11 is $5 per day. For the first time a package of $35 tickets will be available for $105 for three days (April 24-26) and $140 for four days (April 30-May 3). A limited number of VIP passes are also available.

“From day one in 1970, the goal of the festival has remained unchanged as Jazz Fest continues to celebrate the living, breathing culture of New Orleans and Louisiana,” Quint Davis, Jazz Fest director and producer, said in a statement. “While the size and impact of the festival have dramatically increased, we have never lost sight of the original goal of presenting this unique culture to the world through music, the finest in local cuisine and the sheer celebration of life.”

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