Wednesday, June 4, 2008

The Essence Music Festival

Where: New Orleans, Lousiana When: July 4-6, 2008
Are you ready for a super party weekend?

The festival has also augmented its main stage roster with the Essence debut of Rihanna, the Barbados- born singer whose "Umbrella" ranked among 2007's biggest hits; R&B diva Keyshia Cole; neo-soul singer Musiq; and rapper LL Cool J.

They join previously announced Essence headliners Kanye West and Chris Brown, performing on Friday, July 4; Jill Scott on Saturday, July 5; and Chris Rock and Maze featuring Frankie Beverly on Sunday, July 6.

Performance dates for Mary J. Blige, Morris Day & the Time and the new additions are not confirmed.

The superlounges also boast Peabo Bryson, Mint Condition, Raheem Devaughn, Grandmaster Flash, Gill Scott-Heron, Lyfe Jennings, Ledisi, Chrisette Michelle and Solange. Essence also announced the major speakers for its free, daytime empowerment seminars in the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center. New Orleans native turned film and television mogul Tyler Perry presides over the July 4 session with cast members from his "House of Payne" TV series.

On July 5, CNN anchor Soledad O'Brien hosts a televised interactive forum featuring Bill Cosby and Dr. Alvin Poussaint, the co-author, with Cosby, of "Come On, People: On the Path from Victims to Victors."

On July 6, gospel session features Bishop Paul S. Morton and Debra Morton, the Greater St. Stephens Full Gospel Church Choir, Regina Belle and Dr. Juanita Bynum.

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