Allen Toussaint 

A highly influential producer and arranger, pianist Allen Toussaint has had a profound impact on iconic New Orleans artists, such as the Meters and Dr. John. Toussaint has cast a long shadow over the New Orleans sound — and funk in general — for more than 50 years, and his sonic vision and signature strutting groove continue to reverberate far and wide. An arranger of the highest order, Toussaint showed early in his career that he had incomparable talent as a songwriter, and the enduring appeal of his work cannot be overstated, as proved by the varied artists who have performed his songs. (Can anyone forget Devo's version of "Working in a Coal Mine"?) Toussaint, who turns 72 the week after his stop in Kansas City, performs in support of his first-ever jazz album, 2009's acclaimed The Bright Mississippi.

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