There's no need to air the entire Artsplosure mission statement, but here are a couple of key phrases from it: "bring recognition to national, regional, and local artists" and "celebrate excellence in the performing and visual arts." The musical guest list for this year's Artsplosure Spring Arts Festival, which takes place at Moore Square in Raleigh on Saturday and Sunday, boasts the likes of jazz flautist Nestor Torres, boogie-woogie piano queen Marcia Ball and Chapel Hill-based noir poppers The Old Ceremony.
So, check, check and check on national, regional and local. Band leader/Ray Charles sideman/jazz-legend saxophonist David "Fathead" Newman (the featured performer in Saturday's Group Sax reunion) and blues harp master James Cotton both have over 50 years of artistic excellence to celebrate. And if the heavily hyphenated (a clause that has not yet hit the mission statement) strike your fancy, there's reggae-jazz-hip-hop outfit Foundation Stone as well as Enter the Haggis and their Celtic-bluegrass-rock-Latin-funk blend. For complete listings, times and directions, see www.artsplosure.org/springfestival/2005/index.php.