ESSENCE Music Festival

Jul
7
Essence Festival 2013: Keyshia Cole, Trey Songz, Solange, Bridget Kelly, & Wale

Keyshia Cole and Daniel Gibson

New Orleans was the place to be on Day 3 of the Essence Music Festival. Saturday’s lineup featured performances from some of R&B’s biggest past and present stars including Charlie Wilson, Faith Evans, Solange, Keyshia Cole, New Edition, and more.

Wale brought out Bridget Kelly to duet on his hit “Bad” at the Essence day party as Brandy looked on. Bridget also delivered her own set at the Coca-Cola Superlounge.

Trey Songz debuted his new song “Sensational” and announced Timeless as the title of his upcoming album. He was seen backstage on crutches and in a wheel chair, but when he hit the stage, he showed no signs of injury.

Keyshia Cole won over the crowd at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome with her hits and cozied up backstage with her husband Daniel Gibson. She told reporters that she is already working on her next album.

Check out more pics from Day 3 below.

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Jul
6
Brandy, Maxwell, Jill Scott, and LL Cool J Invade Essence Music Festival

Brandy

Following last weekend’s BET Awards, the stars migrated from Los Angeles to New Orleans for the Essence Music Festival. Maxwell, Jill Scott, Emeli Sandé, and Chrisette Michele helped kick off the four-day festival at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on Friday with their soulful sets.

LL Cool J, who is currently on his “Kings of the Mic” tour, took fans back with his hip-hop hits, and Brandy performed her classics including “I Wanna Be Down” and “The Boy Is Mine.”

Solange, Trey Songz, and Keyshia Cole are among the artists on tonight’s bill. Beyoncé will close out the festival on Sunday when “The Mrs. Carter Show” rolls into town.

Check out more photos from Friday’s festivities below.

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Jul
9
Eve Shakes Up ESSENCE Festival

Eve

Eve strutted back to the stage during the ESSENCE Music Festival at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans on Sunday. The Philly MC had the crowd dancing along as she performed her hits including “Love Is Blind,” “Who’s That Girl?,” and “Tambourine,” for which she was joined by Ms. Rose the “Tambourine Lady.”

The 33-year-old rapper is eyeing a fall release for her oft-delayed album Lip Lock. “I wanted to really take what people loved of me and fell in love with in the beginning, with the Ruff Ryders and all of them, and combine it with where I am now,” she told TIME of her first album since 2002’s Eve-Olution.

When it comes to her favorite new female rappers, Azealia Banks tops her list. “I like her style, I think she’s really cute, I think lyrically she’s really good and she’s really different,” said Eve. “She’s probably at the top of my list. But then there’s a girl named Diamond who is from Atlanta who I really like, just as a person and an artist, I think she’s really cool.”

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Jul
8
Keyshia Cole Performs ‘Enough of No Love’ at ESSENCE Festival

Keyshia Cole

Keyshia Cole commanded the stage with a soulful set on the first day of the ESSENCE Music Festival in New Orleans on Friday. Dressed in white, the blonde songstress had the mostly female audience nodding along as she performed her new single “Enough of No Love” for the first time live, mouthing along to Lil Wayne’s verse.

“Do you guys like it?” she asked the crowd at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. “That is the very first time I’ve performed that song.”

Keyshia’s fifth album Woman to Woman is due later this year.

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Jul
7
D’Angelo, Trey Songz, and Keyshia Cole Kick Off ESSENCE Festival

D'Angelo

The sweet sounds of D’Angelo echoed through the Mercedez-Benz Superdome as the ESSENCE Music Festival got underway on Friday. Following his first televised performance in 12 years at the BET Awards last weekend, the ’90s crooner continued his comeback tour with a soulful set on the first day of the three-day festival in New Orleans.

Trey Songz had the ladies screaming his name during his third ESSENCE appearance and Keyshia Cole poured out her heart onstage with her new single “Enough of No Love.”

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Jan
11
Mary J. Blige, Keyshia Cole, & Fantasia to Play ESSENCE Festival

Mary J. Blige

Some of music’s biggest voices are headed to New Orleans. Mary J. Blige, Keyshia Cole, and Fantasia have been announced as performers for this year’s ESSENCE Music Festival.

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Jul
4
Mary J. Blige, Trey Songz Close Out ESSENCE Music Festival

Mary J. Blige

The ESSENCE Music Festival came to a close on Sunday with headliner Mary J. Blige. The Queen of Hip-Hop Soul reigned over the Louisiana Superdome in New Orleans with a retrospective of her hits, ranging from “Real Love” to “The One.” Earlier in the evening, Trey Songz catered to the mostly female audience with his sexy set and New Edition reunited onstage for the first time since 1996. Other acts on the final day’s lineup included Kelly Price, MC Lyte, and George Clinton and Parliament Funkadelic.

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