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Artsplosure, Raleigh's annual major street festival, mixes musical genres like nothing else.

This year's schedule includes Raleigh-boy-made-good Aubrey Freed, who escaped the capitol city to tour the world as the guitarist for the Black Crowes. Freed will be playing with acoustic, prewar Delta blues specialist Alvin Youngblood Hart. Sauce Boss Bill Wharton cooks a heaping stockpot full of gumbo while he entertains with electric blues rock. Twelve-piece Seattle salsa ensemble Yerba Buena presents the best in Cuban dance music while Rani Arbo and Daisy Mayhem's musical gumbo-pot boils over with a mix of Georgia sea island songs, Big Easy second lines, country music and old-time fiddle sounds. The Greg Glassman Quartet features Glassman's athletic trumpet soaring over progressive jazz. Billed as a cross between Patti Page and Marilyn Monroe, L. A. swing-band diva Lavay Smith (pictured left) dishes out danceable big-band sounds as she fronts the Red Hot Skillet Lickers. Local and regional bands round out the program.

There's food, arts and crafts as well as kid's entertainment--and it's all free. So follow your nose and the noise for an outdoor weekend adventure in downtown Raleigh's Moore Square. For more information, visit

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