NEW ORLEANS — The Zac Brown Band will replace country legend Willie Nelson on the closing day of the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival.

Nelson canceled his Sunday performance and postponed other shows after a positive case of the coronavirus in his band. The 89-year-old musician was slated to close the Gentilly Stage — the same stage where his son, Lukas Nelson, is performing earlier in the day with his band the Promise of the Real.

The Zac Brown Band is a country band from Atlanta that’s best known for hits like “Chicken Fried,” “Highway 20 Ride,” “Knee Deep” and “Goodbye in Her Eyes.”

Willie Nelson performs during a gathering outside the Capitol in Austin, Texas, during a voting rights rally July 31, 2021.
Coy Bowles, Caroline Jones, Zac Brown, Chris Fryar and Jimmy De Martini of Zac Brown Band perform onstage during the 2022 iHeartCountry Festival presented by Capital One at the Moody Center on May 7, 2022 in Austin, Texas.

Melissa Etheridge also canceled her scheduled performance after members of her crew tested positive for COVID-19. Mavis Staples replaced Etheridge in the Blues Tent on Saturday.

“Oh my heart hurts not to be there. Mavis will be amazing, I know. I am hoping I can be asked back again. Dave and crew are healing. Thank you for all the well wishes. COVID heartbreak,” tweeted Etheridge after news that Staples would appear on Saturday was announced.

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