Friends and fans gather in New Orleans for tribute to Allen Toussaint

NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - Fans of Allen Toussaint are arriving at the Orpheum Theater for public visitation services for the late music legend.

The Jazz and funk pianist also known for his composing and arranging, as well as his honey toned voice, died suddenly of a heart attack while on tour in Spain.

The visitation will last until 10:45 Friday morning. After there will be a musical tribute coordinated by Jazz fest producer Quint Davis. That will begin at 11 a.m.

The concert includes performances from Elvis Costello, Jimmy Buffett, Irma Thomas, Trombone Shorty and others. New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu will also make remarks.

"Allen Toussaint is our national treasure. He left behind a legacy. I just can't describe it," musician Deacon John said.

Other musicians said Toussaint helped preserve and promote the indigenous culture. His legacy will be hard to match.

Landrieu said Toussaint's death is like "New Orleans' music Katrina."

The ceremonies are expected to wrap up around 1:30 p.m. There will be a private burial after the ceremonies.

In lieu of flowers, Toussaint's family asks for donations to New Orleans Artists Against Hunger and Homelessness.

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