Chairmen of the Board, Charlotte band tapped for CarolinaFest

CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - Three big names have been announced for the CarolinaFest 2012, the welcoming party for the Democratic National Convention.

CarolinaFest 2012 begins at 10 a.m. with the Charlotte Labor Day Parade.

Stage programming will begin at noon to coincide with the conclusion of the parade, which ends in uptown Charlotte and will conclude at approximately 6:15 p.m.

James Taylor, Janelle Monáe and Jeff Bridges and the Abiders were recently announced as CarolinaFest Main Stage performers.

Other bands have been announced as well:

The Blue Dogs: After 25 years of playing shows and releasing 9 CDs and 2 DVDs, the Blue Dogs continue to perform up to 100 shows a year.

The Charleston, S.C.-based band has performed their Americana and country-rock music throughout the southeast and across the country, performing on the same stage with such well-known and diverse artists as Willie Nelson, Widespread Panic, Bruce Hornsby, and Little Feat. While the band is considered bluegrass by many, they run the gamut stylistically, flexing their country and pop muscles, but then also weaving the bluegrass sensibility that goes back to the band's beginnings, while also managing to incorporate African djembe drums into some of their shows.

Chairmen of the Board: Formed in 1969 in Detroit, Chairmen of the Board emerged as a prominent R&B group after the release of their hit "Give Me Just a Little More Time" in 1970.

The song reached number three on the pop chart. Since then, the band has become a prominent part of the Southeast beach music circuit with soulful hits like "Pay to the Piper," "(You've Got Me) Dangling on a String," and "Carolina Girls."

NGP Music Group: NGP Music Group is a newly formed independent label that is made up of enlisted, active, corpsman in the U.S. Navy. Chris Prada (bUllY) and Gregory LaMont Deshields (Intellectz) rapidly became friends when they discovered each had a driving desire to perform a certain type of Hip Hop music.

NGP is a compassionate group that supports Sew Much Comfort, an organization that makes adaptive clothing for wounded military men and women by committing 10% of their net profits to help their fellow wounded service men and women.

Simplified: With raucous guitar riffs, velvety vocals and hook-laden melodies, Simplified has been hailed as one of music's most interesting and, ironically, most complex bands on the circuit today. The group started in Charlotte.

Described as "funky, reggae, roots rock & roll," the rollicking quartet has not only stunned critics with their intricate songwriting and versatile stage show but also managed to create a sound all on their own—from the writing, recording and even the distribution of their four albums.

In just eight years since the band's inception, Simplified has performed more than 2,500 shows.

West End Mambo: Formed in 1999, West End Mambo is comprised of musicians from North, South, and Central America, as well as the Caribbean.

This nine-piece band performs a fiery mix of classic salsa from bolero and rumbas to guaracha and son muntuno. Their repertoire includes original orchestral salsa arrangements that they have performed with the Winston-Salem and Greensboro Symphonies.