2013 | SAVE THE DATE

The 2013 ESSENCE Music Festival® is set for July 4-7 in New Orleans.
Sign up for our Festival newsletter to get ticket, talent and other updates.

Schedule

  • Main Stage
We've got the best music and the best artists live at the Superdome. Each night at the Superdome, the Main Stage will be electrified with performances by the hottest stars in R&B, soul and gospel. Don't miss each night's line up, including a performance by The Queen of Soul Aretha Franklin who will receive the first ever "Power Award!" Doors open at 6 p.m. each night. Main Stage performances start at 6:30 p.m. Get Festival tickets here.
  • Main Stage / Friday
  • My EMF
    • Charlie Wilson
    • Charlie Wilson Bio Get Tickets
    The Festival is excited to bring this timeless music icon back to New Orleans. "Uncle" Charlie…
    The Festival is excited to bring this timeless music icon back to New Orleans. "Uncle" Charlie Wilson is the blueprint on which other artists have based their style. From his breakout as a member of the Gap Band to his latest solo album, Just Charlie, Wilson has been a remarkable artist whose life story is as inspiring as his music. Overcoming personal struggles, Wilson rebounded and landed on top with his impeccable vocals, uplifting lyrics and broad range of musical genres. Tell us why you love to party at the Festival with "Uncle" Charlie here.
    read more »
    11:45 Main Stage
  • My EMF
    • D'Angelo
    • D'Angelo Bio Get Tickets
    The 2012 ESSENCE Music Festival is excited to announce the addition of Grammy-Award winning artist…
    The 2012 ESSENCE Music Festival is excited to announce the addition of Grammy-Award winning artist D’Angelo as he makes his first US appearance in a decade at the Festival.  We know this beloved vocalist will thrill the crowd with his chart-topping hits and amaze festival-goers with his timeless live performance.  Can't wait to see D'Angelo at the Festival? Tell us on Facebook and Twitter.
    read more »
    10:10 Main Stage
  • My EMF
    • Trey Songz
    • Trey Songz Bio Get Tickets
    Trey Songz is a Grammy®-nominated multifaceted singer-songwriter, producer and actor. The late,…
    Trey Songz is a Grammy®-nominated multifaceted singer-songwriter, producer and actor. The late, great Atlantic Records founder Ahmet Ertegun once declared Songz to be "among the most promising R&B artists we have had on Atlantic since we started the company 60 years ago.”  His debut album, I Gotta Make It was released in 2005, followed by Trey Day in 2007 and Ready in 2009. Passion, Pain & Pleasure was Trey’s follow up to the RIAA gold certified smash, Ready.  From the bouncy first single, "Bottoms Up (Feat. Nicki Minaj)” to the chart-topping, record breaking #1 Hip Hop and R&B single, “Cant Be Friends,” Passion, Pain & Pleasure sold over 4 million album tracks laying the groundwork for Trey’s highly anticipated new album, Chapter V which sees the Virginia-based R&B superstar energized and evolving as he continues to refine his mastery of sultry, soulful song craft.  
    read more »
    8:50 Main Stage
  • My EMF
    • Keyshia Cole
    • Keyshia Cole Bio Get Tickets
    Platinum-selling R&B artist Keyshia Cole returns the ESSENCE Music Festival® stage for what…
    Platinum-selling R&B artist Keyshia Cole returns the ESSENCE Music Festival® stage for what will surely be an electric performance. Stay tuned for more information on this Festival fan favorite.
    read more »
    7:30 Main Stage
  • My EMF
    • The Pointer Sisters
    • The Pointer Sisters Bio Get Tickets
    We’re so excited! The iconic  Pointer Sisters will perform live at the 2012 Festival. With a…
    We’re so excited! The iconic  Pointer Sisters will perform live at the 2012 Festival. With a career that spans close to 40 years, these R&B superstars have received numerous awards, including a star on Hollywood Walk of Fame, performed with symphony orchestras from across the world and topped the charts in the R&B, pop and country categories with such hits as “Yes We Can, Can,” “Fairytale,” “How Long (Betcha Got a Chick on the Side),” “Fire,” “He’s So Shy,” “Automatic,” “Jump (For My Love),” and the classic “I’m So Excited,” which has played of 2.5 million times on radio to date. What’s your favorite Pointer Sisters song? Tell us here.
    read more »
    6:30 Main Stage
  • My EMF
    • Nephew Tommy - HOST
    • Nephew Tommy - HOST Bio Get Tickets
    He’s an actor, comedian, producer and entrepreneur. Thomas “Nephew Tommy” Miles has built a…
    He’s an actor, comedian, producer and entrepreneur. Thomas “Nephew Tommy” Miles has built a career that encompasses radio, television, film and more. Thomas’ role as co-host of the nationally syndicated Steve Harvey Morning Show puts him in front of a live radio audience of more than 8 million listeners daily.  Thomas also has a loyal following as a stand-up comedian and has earned a reputation for wowing the crowd. For three years, he served as the exclusive opening act on the Luther Vandross tour. In 2010 and 2011, he hosted the Essence Music Festival.  He’s a talented thespian, a Theater Major of Texas A&M University, who’s worked in over a dozen stage plays and studied with the Royal Shakespeare Company of London.   Most recently, he was seen in Think Like A Man from the best selling book by Steve Harvey.
    read more »
    6:20 Main Stage
  • Main Stage / Saturday
  • My EMF
    • Mary J. Blige
    • Mary J. Blige Bio Get Tickets
    Without a doubt, Mary J. Blige is a Festival superstar, having had the most appearances by any…
    Without a doubt, Mary J. Blige is a Festival superstar, having had the most appearances by any female artist on the mainstage of the ESSENCE Music Festival®. Mary J. will excite her devoted fans this weekend with her unparalleled musical talents. She's the only artist with GRAMMY wins in R&B, Rap, Pop and Gospel—a total of nine. In 2010 Billboard magazine ranked her as the most successful R&B female artist of the past 25 years. With new music, movie roles, fragrances and her non-profit organization FFAWN, Mary J. reigns supreme. Tell us why you love Mary J. here.
    read more »
    11:40 Main Stage
  • My EMF
    • Kevin Hart
    • Kevin Hart Bio Get Tickets
    In September 2011, Hart released Laugh At My Pain, the feature film version of his comedy tour…
    In September 2011, Hart released Laugh At My Pain, the feature film version of his comedy tour (under the same name).  The movie grossed over $7 million, and was the most successful film in its category that year.  The tour made Hart 2011's number one comedian on Ticketmaster, and in February 2011 Hart sold out the Nokia Theater for two nights in a row to break the record previously set by Eddie Murphy.  This spring Hart will be seen starring in two movies in April: Think Like A Man and Five-Year Engagement.  Hart's DVD Seriously...Funny is one of the fastest selling DVDs in recent years and has gone triple platinum.  Hart began his career in comedy on amateur night at a Philadelphia comedy club, and was instantly hooked.  With his passion for stand-up, Hart continues to tour the country to sold-out audiences.  Are you a Kevin Hart fan?  Tell us on Facebook and Twitter.
    read more »
    9:50 Main Stage
  • My EMF
    • Ledisi
    • Ledisi Bio Get Tickets
    This New Orleans–born singer/songwriter is always a special treat for Festival attendees and this…
    This New Orleans–born singer/songwriter is always a special treat for Festival attendees and this year will be no exception. This GRAMMY Award nominee has been performing around the world with her latest CD, Pieces of Me, which is bursting with songs of love, intimacy and self-assurance—all delivered by an unmatched voice at the top of its game. Be prepared to be blown away by her powerful and inspiring live performance. Share your favorite Ledisi song here.
    read more »
    8:30 Main Stage
  • My EMF
    • Tank
    • Tank Bio Get Tickets
    Tank is one of the most recognizable names in modern R&B, known for his vivid storytelling and…
    Tank is one of the most recognizable names in modern R&B, known for his vivid storytelling and sensual love songs. He's an icon in the making, with four albums and eight GRAMMY nominations under his belt. He's also a singer who carries the torch of masters, while redefining R&B for a new decade. For singer/songwriter/producer Tank, the secret to his success with such hits as "Maybe I Deserve" and "Please Don't Go" is simple: he remains true to who he is, as a man and an artist. Tell us your favorite Tank song here.
    read more »
    6:45 Main Stage
  • My EMF
    • Mary Mary
    • Mary Mary Bio Get Tickets
    Ever since siblings Erica Campbell and Tina Campbell broke through in 2000 with the pioneering…
    Ever since siblings Erica Campbell and Tina Campbell broke through in 2000 with the pioneering crossover hit "Shackles (Praise You)," the chart-topping sister act has never wavered from defying convention to fulfill its mission: sending uplifting messages through music and words that are relatable to everyone. More than ten years later, Mary Mary has earned three GRAMMY Awards, two American Music Awards, an NAACP Image Award and a BET Award thanks to such hits as "Yesterday," "Heaven" and "God in Me." The "Mary Mary way" sounds just as fresh and innovative on the duo's sixth album, the aptly titled Something Big, featuring the lively lead single, "Walking." What's your favorite Mary Mary song? Tell us here.
    read more »
    7:40 Main Stage
  • My EMF
    • Nephew Tommy - HOST
    • Nephew Tommy - HOST Bio Get Tickets
    He’s an actor, comedian, producer and entrepreneur. Thomas “Nephew Tommy” Miles has built a…
    He’s an actor, comedian, producer and entrepreneur. Thomas “Nephew Tommy” Miles has built a career that encompasses radio, television, film and more. Thomas’ role as co-host of the nationally syndicated Steve Harvey Morning Show puts him in front of a live radio audience of more than 8 million listeners daily.  Thomas also has a loyal following as a stand-up comedian and has earned a reputation for wowing the crowd. For three years, he served as the exclusive opening act on the Luther Vandross tour. In 2010 and 2011, he hosted the Essence Music Festival.  He’s a talented thespian, a Theater Major of Texas A&M University, who’s worked in over a dozen stage plays and studied with the Royal Shakespeare Company of London.   Most recently, he was seen in Think Like A Man from the best selling book by Steve Harvey.
    read more »
    6:35 Main Stage
  • Main Stage / Sunday
  • My EMF
    • Aretha Franklin
    •  Aretha Franklin Bio Get Tickets
    The 2012 ESSENCE Music Festival is excited to celebrate The Power of Our Voice with the Queen of…
    The 2012 ESSENCE Music Festival is excited to celebrate The Power of Our Voice with the Queen of Soul Aretha Franklin, who last performed at the Festival in 2005. ESSENCE will honor the iconic singer with "The Power Award" during her performance Festival weekend. Congratulate our Power Award recipient here.
    read more »
    9:47 Main Stage
  • My EMF
    • Chaka Khan
    • Chaka Khan Bio Get Tickets
    The 2012 Festival is excited to have Chaka Khan conclude the weekend with a special performance…
    The 2012 Festival is excited to have Chaka Khan conclude the weekend with a special performance where she'll be joined by R&B Divas Faith Evans, Nicci Gilbert, Monifah Carter, Syleenah Johnson and Keke Wyatt. Together these powerful voices will pay tribute to the R&B artists who passed away over this past year.
    read more »
    11:45 Main Stage
  • My EMF
    • Anthony Hamilton
    • Anthony Hamilton Bio Get Tickets
    Anthony Hamilton's voice just keeps getting better with time. The Grammy Award winner’s arresting…
    Anthony Hamilton's voice just keeps getting better with time. The Grammy Award winner’s arresting voice provided the perfect accompaniment to Jill Scott’s earthy vocals on the captivating duet "So in Love." Hamilton is igniting even more buzz with his new single "Pray For Me," the soul-stirring Babyface-produced track is the second single from his fourth studio album, Back to Love. Hamilton scored a platinum debut with Coming From Where I’m From, featuring the chart-topping hit “Charlene.” His gold-certified sophomore set Ain’t Nobody Worryin', spun off the No. 1 hit "Can't Let Go." In 2008 came The Point of It All and Hamilton won his first Grammy Award in 2009 for his collaboration on Al Green's "You Got the Love I Need."  Hamilton recently completed a sold-out European tour, which included stops in London, Paris, Amsterdam and Sweden. His national headlining tour is expected early fall 2012. Are you looking forward to seeing Anthony Hamilton at Festival? Tell us on Facebook and Twitter.
    read more »
    8:35 Main Stage
  • My EMF
    • Fantasia
    • Fantasia Bio Get Tickets
    Fantasia is bringing her soulful songs and empowering spirit back to the ESSENCE Music Festival®…
    Fantasia is bringing her soulful songs and empowering spirit back to the ESSENCE Music Festival® for a third time. This American Idol winner triumphed with her third album, Back to Me, featuring the single "Bittersweet," which won her a GRAMMY for Best Female R&B Vocal Performance. But her talent keeps growing—as an actress, author and as a reality star. Share your favorite Fantasia role here.
    read more »
    7:15 Main Stage
  • My EMF
    • Kirk Franklin
    • Kirk Franklin Bio Get Tickets
    For nearly two decades now, Kirk Franklin has been a multiplatinum-selling purveyor of majestic…
    For nearly two decades now, Kirk Franklin has been a multiplatinum-selling purveyor of majestic fusions of gospel and contemporary music and a mirror of Christian humanity, boldly reflecting what one faith-walking man can accomplish when he focuses on God and taps deeply into the gifts he’s been given. His irresistible rhythms and rhapsodies have resulted in albums that consistently top both Billboard’s Gospel and Christian charts, as well as appear in the Top 10 of the R&B/Hip Hop chart. Franklin is also the host and executive producer of the gospel talent show Sunday Best, now heading into its fourth season. To date, the trendsetter has garnered seven GRAMMY Awards, 35 Stellar Awards, 11 Dove Awards (CCM), five NAACP Image Awards an American Music Award and numerous others.  What song from Kirk Franklin inspires you the most?  Tell us here.
    read more »
    6:15 Main Stage
  • My EMF
    • Nephew Tommy - HOST
    • Nephew Tommy - HOST Bio Get Tickets
    He’s an actor, comedian, producer and entrepreneur. Thomas “Nephew Tommy” Miles has built a…
    He’s an actor, comedian, producer and entrepreneur. Thomas “Nephew Tommy” Miles has built a career that encompasses radio, television, film and more. Thomas’ role as co-host of the nationally syndicated Steve Harvey Morning Show puts him in front of a live radio audience of more than 8 million listeners daily.  Thomas also has a loyal following as a stand-up comedian and has earned a reputation for wowing the crowd. For three years, he served as the exclusive opening act on the Luther Vandross tour. In 2010 and 2011, he hosted the Essence Music Festival.  He’s a talented thespian, a Theater Major of Texas A&M University, who’s worked in over a dozen stage plays and studied with the Royal Shakespeare Company of London.   Most recently, he was seen in Think Like A Man from the best selling book by Steve Harvey.
    read more »
    6:05 Main Stage
  • Block Party
Join us for the daily pre-show to the biggest concerts of the summer at the FREE Festival Block Party featuring Doug E. Fresh. Get into the Festival groove each day with DJs spinning the latest jams, live performances, surprise celebrity appearances and much more. No ticket is required for this event. More artists to be announced. The Block Party will be held daily from 3:00 to 6:15 p.m. at Champions Square at the Superdome.
  • Block Party / Friday
  • My EMF
    • Verizon Wireless (Block Party)
    • Free
    Verizon Wireless is a proud sponsor of our first Festival Block Party featuring Doug E. Fresh.…
    Verizon Wireless is a proud sponsor of our first Festival Block Party featuring Doug E. Fresh. Check out all of our Block Party performers below.
    2:40 Block Party
  • My EMF
    • Festival Block Party Second Line!
    Get in on the Festival Block Party Second Line!  Meet us on Friday, July 6 at 2pm at Canal and St.…
    Get in on the Festival Block Party Second Line!  Meet us on Friday, July 6 at 2pm at Canal and St. Charles Streets as we kick of the FREE Block Party.  Dance with celebrities, performers and New Orleans own Zulu Social Aid & Pleasure Club all the way to Champions Square. Check out the weekend Block Party schedule below.
    2:00 Block Party
  • My EMF
    • Doug E. Fresh
    • Doug E. Fresh Bio Free
    Dubbed the "World's Greatest Entertainer" for his unrivaled ability to rock a crowd, Harlem…
    Dubbed the "World's Greatest Entertainer" for his unrivaled ability to rock a crowd, Harlem native Doug E. Fresh began his musical career at age 13. The originator of the human beat box (vocally simulating the sound of drums and other musical instruments), he spawned an international hip-hop trend and is best known for the two-sided, multi-platinum hits "The Show" and "La Di Da Di,"  Throughout his 20-year career, he has nurtured rising talent, including the likes of MC Ricky D (AKA Slick Rick), P. Diddy, Biz Markie and others.  Fresh has collaborated with Tupac Shakur, Biggie Smalls, Eminem, and Dr. Dre. He's also worked with artists in reggae, R&B, jazz and gospel including Beenie Man, Prince, Chaka Kahn and Stevie Wonder).  Doug has rocked the Grammys® performing with Jamie Foxx, T-Pain and Slash. A typical month sees him in the studio putting down tracks for his upcoming albums, working on a book on hip-hop and on animation of his new children's book, hosting events and rocking the house at concerts around the world all while finding time to support his favorite causes. He's a tireless hip-hop activist, who has fought against racism, drugs, illiteracy, police brutality and homelessness in communities around the world.
    read more »
    5:05 Block Party
  • My EMF
    • Amanda Seales - HOST
    • Amanda Seales - HOST Bio Free
    Amanda Seales is the epitome of a Renaissance woman. Working within multiple realms of the arts as…
    Amanda Seales is the epitome of a Renaissance woman. Working within multiple realms of the arts as a DJ, recording artist, visual artist, host, culture critic, poet, speaker, playwright, actress and more. She has built her career on creativity, quality and integrity. From hosting and providing commentary on television to creating web programming, appearing on two seasons of Russell Simmons' Def Poetry Jam, speaking at numerous colleges and universities across the nation, exhibiting/selling her artwork on her DivaWorksofArt.com site and working with musicians, she has always remained genuine and honest in her message. Her most recent works include, Death of the Diva, a hilarious one-woman musical narrative challenging pop culture's portrayal of women one character at a time, serving as co-host on MTV's new late night show, HIP-HOP POV and independently releasing her newest hip-hop soul project, Technicolor Lover.
    read more »
    3:00 Block Party
  • My EMF
    • Carla B. Ferrell - HOST
    • Carla B. Ferrell - HOST Bio Free
    Carla B. Ferrell is the Syndicated Program Director and one of the co-hosts for the Steve Harvey…
    Carla B. Ferrell is the Syndicated Program Director and one of the co-hosts for the Steve Harvey Morning Show. Mrs. Ferrell began her career in radio at KMJQ in Houston.  She’s worked at WGCI and WVAZ in Chicago and WQUE and WYLD-AM/FM in New Orleans. In August of 2005, Carla joined the Steve Harvey Morning Show to create morning drive entertainment, which includes great music, compelling content, sidesplitting humor, current events, topical stories and addressing the seriousness of real community issues. Mrs. Ferrell has garnered numerous industry awards including being voted by NABFEME, one of the "Ten Most Influential Women in Radio." Carla is a wife, mother, broadcast manager/on air talent, entrepreneur and tireless breast cancer activist. She is founder and CEO of Lips by Carla, a lip gloss collection designed for women who want a more natural look.
    read more »
    3:00 Block Party
  • My EMF
    • Beverly Bond
    • Beverly Bond Bio Free
    Celebrity DJ Beverly Bond and founder of BLACK GIRLS ROCK! is a distinguished business woman,…
    Celebrity DJ Beverly Bond and founder of BLACK GIRLS ROCK! is a distinguished business woman, mentor, executive television producer and writer.  A true music connoisseur, Beverly Bond's passion for music and her uncanny ability to read the crowd has solidified her as one of the premier DJs in the world. Over the last decade, Beverly Bond, a former Wilhelmina model, has brought her versatile talents to the most highly exclusive events and to a myriad of celebrity clients including Prince, Alicia Keys, Sarah Jessica Parker, Erykah Badu, Sean "Diddy" Combs, Derek Jeter, John Legend, Venus Williams, Jay-Z and Michael Jordan.
    read more »
    4:05 Block Party
  • My EMF
    • Kourtney Heart
    • Kourtney Heart Bio Free
    Kourtney Heart is an 18 year-old phenom from New Orleans, LA. Singing since the age of 3, she has a…
    Kourtney Heart is an 18 year-old phenom from New Orleans, LA. Singing since the age of 3, she has a voice and persona that extends far beyond her age. Her style is fresh and combines R&B and pop with a good dose of hip-hop beats. Kourtney has been wowing audiences in talent shows, concerts, and club appearances with her powerful vocals and bubbly smiles.
    read more »
    3:25 Block Party
  • My EMF
    • DJ Captain Charles
    • DJ Captain Charles Bio Free
    Charles Leach, know to the people of New Orleans as DJ Captain Charles has been in the DJ business…
    Charles Leach, know to the people of New Orleans as DJ Captain Charles has been in the DJ business for more than 20 years. Captain Charles is a native of New Orleans and a resident of the Magnolia Housing Development now known as Harmony Oaks. He started DJing at Booker T. Washington High School when they had their talent shows. The name Captain Charles came from him wearing captain style hats to every event that he was a part of.  In the 1990s, the Captain played at area clubs like A Touch of Class, Excalibur and Discovery.  By traveling to all the different clubs, he was introduced to a number of celebrities like Ghetto Boyz, Al B. Sure!, Doug E. Fresh and the legendary Slick Rick.  The Captain has opened and played for many big events such as BET Comic View with Sheryl Underwood, Jazz Fest, Tom Joyner Cruise, and the ESSENCE Music Festival®. He has also been rated the best DJ in New Orleans by Gambit.
    read more »
    3:00 Block Party
  • Block Party / Saturday
  • My EMF
    • Verizon Wireless (Block Party)
    • Free
    Verizon Wireless is a proud sponsor of our first Festival Block Party featuring Doug E. Fresh.…
    Verizon Wireless is a proud sponsor of our first Festival Block Party featuring Doug E. Fresh. Check out all of our Block Party performers below.
    2:40 Block Party
  • My EMF
    • Doug E. Fresh
    • Doug E. Fresh Bio Free
    Dubbed the "World's Greatest Entertainer" for his unrivaled ability to rock a crowd, Harlem…
    Dubbed the "World's Greatest Entertainer" for his unrivaled ability to rock a crowd, Harlem native Doug E. Fresh began his musical career at age 13. The originator of the human beat box (vocally simulating the sound of drums and other musical instruments), he spawned an international hip-hop trend and is best known for the two-sided, multi-platinum hits "The Show" and "La Di Da Di,"  Throughout his 20-year career, he has nurtured rising talent, including the likes of MC Ricky D (AKA Slick Rick), P. Diddy, Biz Markie and others.  Fresh has collaborated with Tupac Shakur, Biggie Smalls, Eminem, and Dr. Dre. He's also worked with artists in reggae, R&B, jazz and gospel including Beenie Man, Prince, Chaka Kahn and Stevie Wonder).  Doug has rocked the Grammys® performing with Jamie Foxx, T-Pain and Slash. A typical month sees him in the studio putting down tracks for his upcoming albums, working on a book on hip-hop and on animation of his new children's book, hosting events and rocking the house at concerts around the world all while finding time to support his favorite causes. He's a tireless hip-hop activist, who has fought against racism, drugs, illiteracy, police brutality and homelessness in communities around the world.
    read more »
    5:20 Block Party
  • My EMF
    • Amanda Seales - HOST
    • Amanda Seales - HOST Bio Free
    Amanda Seales is the epitome of a Renaissance woman. Working within multiple realms of the arts as…
    Amanda Seales is the epitome of a Renaissance woman. Working within multiple realms of the arts as a DJ, recording artist, visual artist, host, culture critic, poet, speaker, playwright, actress and more. She has built her career on creativity, quality and integrity. From hosting and providing commentary on television to creating web programming, appearing on two seasons of Russell Simmons' Def Poetry Jam, speaking at numerous colleges and universities across the nation, exhibiting/selling her artwork on her DivaWorksofArt.com site and working with musicians, she has always remained genuine and honest in her message. Her most recent works include, Death of the Diva, a hilarious one-woman musical narrative challenging pop culture's portrayal of women one character at a time, serving as co-host on MTV's new late night show, HIP-HOP POV and independently releasing her newest hip-hop soul project, Technicolor Lover.
    read more »
    3:00 Block Party
  • My EMF
    • Carla B. Ferrell - HOST
    • Carla B. Ferrell - HOST Bio Free
    Carla B. Ferrell is the Syndicated Program Director and one of the co-hosts for the Steve Harvey…
    Carla B. Ferrell is the Syndicated Program Director and one of the co-hosts for the Steve Harvey Morning Show. Mrs. Ferrell began her career in radio at KMJQ in Houston.  She’s worked at WGCI and WVAZ in Chicago and WQUE and WYLD-AM/FM in New Orleans. In August of 2005, Carla joined the Steve Harvey Morning Show to create morning drive entertainment, which includes great music, compelling content, sidesplitting humor, current events, topical stories and addressing the seriousness of real community issues. Mrs. Ferrell has garnered numerous industry awards including being voted by NABFEME, one of the "Ten Most Influential Women in Radio." Carla is a wife, mother, broadcast manager/on air talent, entrepreneur and tireless breast cancer activist. She is founder and CEO of Lips by Carla, a lip gloss collection designed for women who want a more natural look.
    read more »
    3:00 Block Party
  • My EMF
    • MC Lyte
    • MC Lyte Bio Free
    Lana Moorer aka MC Lyte has been in the game for over two decades and shows no signs of slowing…
    Lana Moorer aka MC Lyte has been in the game for over two decades and shows no signs of slowing down.  She is currently VP and Music Supervisor for DuBose Music Group/DuBose Entertainment, executive board member for WEEN organization and hosts the radio show Cafe Mocha Radio.  The MC/songwriter has recorded ten albums and is a two-time Grammy® nominee. Lyte has added DJ to her resume and for the last four years has entertained many through spinning on the 1s and 2s.  MC Lyte shines brighter than ever.  This incredibly talented woman has been in the game over two decades and shows no signs of slowing down anytime soon.
    read more »
    4:05 Block Party
  • My EMF
    • Dee-1
    • Dee-1 Bio Free
    Born and raised in the heart of New Orleans, Dee-1 built a solid street buzz with his mix tapes…
    Born and raised in the heart of New Orleans, Dee-1 built a solid street buzz with his mix tapes which have received praise from world famous producers Mannie Fresh and 9th WonderDee-1 has performed alongside nationally acts such as Lil Wayne, Lupe Fiasco, Trey Songz, Akon, The Roots, Musiq Soulchild, Fat Joe and more. Dee-1 became the first hip-hop artist ever to win the annual Louisiana State University Battle of the Bands Contest.  He has become known for giving jaw-dropping shows and electrifying audiences wherever he performs.  Are you a Dee-1 fan?  Tell us on Facebook and Twitter.
    read more »
    3:25 Block Party
  • My EMF
    • DJ Captain Charles
    • DJ Captain Charles Bio Free
    Charles Leach, know to the people of New Orleans as DJ Captain Charles has been in the DJ business…
    Charles Leach, know to the people of New Orleans as DJ Captain Charles has been in the DJ business for more than 20 years. Captain Charles is a native of New Orleans and a resident of the Magnolia Housing Development now known as Harmony Oaks. He started DJing at Booker T. Washington High School when they had their talent shows. The name Captain Charles came from him wearing captain style hats to every event that he was a part of.  In the 1990s, the Captain played at area clubs like A Touch of Class, Excalibur and Discovery.  By traveling to all the different clubs, he was introduced to a number of celebrities like Ghetto Boyz, Al B. Sure!, Doug E. Fresh and the legendary Slick Rick.  The Captain has opened and played for many big events such as BET Comic View with Sheryl Underwood, Jazz Fest, Tom Joyner Cruise, and the ESSENCE Music Festival®. He has also been rated the best DJ in New Orleans by Gambit.
    read more »
    3:00 Block Party
  • Block Party / Sunday
  • My EMF
    • Verizon Wireless (Block Party)
    • Free
    Verizon Wireless is a proud sponsor of our first Festival Block Party featuring Doug E. Fresh.…
    Verizon Wireless is a proud sponsor of our first Festival Block Party featuring Doug E. Fresh. Check out all of our Block Party performers below.
    2:40 Block Party
  • My EMF
    • Doug E. Fresh
    • Doug E. Fresh Bio Free
    Dubbed the "World's Greatest Entertainer" for his unrivaled ability to rock a crowd, Harlem…
    Dubbed the "World's Greatest Entertainer" for his unrivaled ability to rock a crowd, Harlem native Doug E. Fresh began his musical career at age 13. The originator of the human beat box (vocally simulating the sound of drums and other musical instruments), he spawned an international hip-hop trend and is best known for the two-sided, multi-platinum hits "The Show" and "La Di Da Di,"  Throughout his 20-year career, he has nurtured rising talent, including the likes of MC Ricky D (AKA Slick Rick), P. Diddy, Biz Markie and others.  Fresh has collaborated with Tupac Shakur, Biggie Smalls, Eminem, and Dr. Dre. He's also worked with artists in reggae, R&B, jazz and gospel including Beenie Man, Prince, Chaka Kahn and Stevie Wonder).  Doug has rocked the Grammys® performing with Jamie Foxx, T-Pain and Slash. A typical month sees him in the studio putting down tracks for his upcoming albums, working on a book on hip-hop and on animation of his new children's book, hosting events and rocking the house at concerts around the world all while finding time to support his favorite causes. He's a tireless hip-hop activist, who has fought against racism, drugs, illiteracy, police brutality and homelessness in communities around the world.
    read more »
    5:05 Block Party
  • My EMF
    • Amanda Seales - HOST
    • Amanda Seales - HOST Bio Free
    Amanda Seales is the epitome of a Renaissance woman. Working within multiple realms of the arts as…
    Amanda Seales is the epitome of a Renaissance woman. Working within multiple realms of the arts as a DJ, recording artist, visual artist, host, culture critic, poet, speaker, playwright, actress and more. She has built her career on creativity, quality and integrity. From hosting and providing commentary on television to creating web programming, appearing on two seasons of Russell Simmons' Def Poetry Jam, speaking at numerous colleges and universities across the nation, exhibiting/selling her artwork on her DivaWorksofArt.com site and working with musicians, she has always remained genuine and honest in her message. Her most recent works include, Death of the Diva, a hilarious one-woman musical narrative challenging pop culture's portrayal of women one character at a time, serving as co-host on MTV's new late night show, HIP-HOP POV and independently releasing her newest hip-hop soul project, Technicolor Lover.
    read more »
    3:00 Block Party
  • My EMF
    • Carla B. Ferrell - HOST
    • Carla B. Ferrell - HOST Bio Free
    Carla B. Ferrell is the Syndicated Program Director and one of the co-hosts for the Steve Harvey…
    Carla B. Ferrell is the Syndicated Program Director and one of the co-hosts for the Steve Harvey Morning Show. Mrs. Ferrell began her career in radio at KMJQ in Houston.  She’s worked at WGCI and WVAZ in Chicago and WQUE and WYLD-AM/FM in New Orleans. In August of 2005, Carla joined the Steve Harvey Morning Show to create morning drive entertainment, which includes great music, compelling content, sidesplitting humor, current events, topical stories and addressing the seriousness of real community issues. Mrs. Ferrell has garnered numerous industry awards including being voted by NABFEME, one of the "Ten Most Influential Women in Radio." Carla is a wife, mother, broadcast manager/on air talent, entrepreneur and tireless breast cancer activist. She is founder and CEO of Lips by Carla, a lip gloss collection designed for women who want a more natural look.
    read more »
    3:00 Block Party
  • My EMF
    • Spinderella
    • Spinderella Bio Free
    Although she now prefers to be called "Spin" the fans, she is known, of course, as the…
    Although she now prefers to be called "Spin" the fans, she is known, of course, as the irrepressible, fun, funky and talented DJ Spinderella of the sexy female group Salt-N-Pepa. Salt-N-Pepa rocketed up the charts in the late '80s and '90s with such smashes as "Push It," "Let's Talk About Sex," the Grammy® award-winning "Shoop," "None of Your Business" (which Spin co-wrote), and "What A Man" the collaboration with girl group En Vogue.  Spin is now a celebrity host.  Her show, The Spin'z Cycle, has skits featuring Spin, live interviews with your favorite recording artists, actors, comedians, sports figures and she goes behind the scenes with industry professionals. The Spin'z Cycle also includes special segments covering urban lifestyle subjects such as fashion, health and beauty.
    read more »
    4:05 Block Party
  • My EMF
    • F. Stokes
    • F. Stokes Bio Free
    The Festival is excited to have F. Stokes for the weekend.  Stokes has been called "a voice that…
    The Festival is excited to have F. Stokes for the weekend.  Stokes has been called "a voice that is needed in this current era of Hip-Hop. His stories make you feel as if you've shared the same pains and triumph's that he's experienced."  Stokes is known to be a high-energy performer who owns the stage Stokes is sure to bring his own style of live music to the Block Party Stage.
    read more »
    3:25 Block Party
  • My EMF
    • DJ Captain Charles
    • DJ Captain Charles Bio Free
    Charles Leach, know to the people of New Orleans as DJ Captain Charles has been in the DJ business…
    Charles Leach, know to the people of New Orleans as DJ Captain Charles has been in the DJ business for more than 20 years. Captain Charles is a native of New Orleans and a resident of the Magnolia Housing Development now known as Harmony Oaks. He started DJing at Booker T. Washington High School when they had their talent shows. The name Captain Charles came from him wearing captain style hats to every event that he was a part of.  In the 1990s, the Captain played at area clubs like A Touch of Class, Excalibur and Discovery.  By traveling to all the different clubs, he was introduced to a number of celebrities like Ghetto Boyz, Al B. Sure!, Doug E. Fresh and the legendary Slick Rick.  The Captain has opened and played for many big events such as BET Comic View with Sheryl Underwood, Jazz Fest, Tom Joyner Cruise, and the ESSENCE Music Festival®. He has also been rated the best DJ in New Orleans by Gambit.
    read more »
    3:00 Block Party
  • Superlounge
Experience our hottest Superlounge yet in the Superdome! Lounge with your favorite songs and music's greatest and newest talents all in one magical weekend. Purchase your Festival concert ticket for the night for your seat at our Main Stage show and access to the Superlounge. More artists to be announced. Doors open at 6 p.m. each night. Superlounge performances start at 7 p.m. Get Festival tickets here.


  • Superlounge / Friday
  • My EMF
    • Coca-Cola Superlounge (Friday)
    • Get Tickets
    Festival presenter Coca-Cola features Rebirth Brass Band, Stephanie Mills and Gary Clark Jr. in…
    Festival presenter Coca-Cola features Rebirth Brass Band, Stephanie Mills and Gary Clark Jr. in their lounge tonight. Find out more about the artists below.
    6:00 Superlounge
  • My EMF
    • Rebirth Brass Band
    • Rebirth Brass Band Bio Get Tickets
    The 2012 Essence Music Festival® is excited to have legendary band and fan favorite The Rebirth…
    The 2012 Essence Music Festival® is excited to have legendary band and fan favorite The Rebirth Brass Band return to the Festival Superlounge stage.  We're sure they're going to make this party the place to be.  Are you a fan of brass band music?  Tell us on Facebook and Twitter.
    read more »
    10:15 Superlounge
  • My EMF
    • Stephanie Mills
    • Stephanie Mills Bio Get Tickets
    Stephanie Mills has one of the most distinctive voices in contemporary music, an ultra soulful…
    Stephanie Mills has one of the most distinctive voices in contemporary music, an ultra soulful songstress whose onstage energy and power inspires standing ovations wherever she performs. She is a legend who, in over the span of a 25-plus year illustrious career, has distinguished herself as an actress and performer who is as at home on the Broadway stage as she is in the recording studio with a loyal and dedicated audience that has been with her all the way. Share your favorite Stephanie Mills song here.
    read more »
    8:30 Superlounge
  • My EMF
    • Gary Clark Jr.
    • Gary Clark Jr. Bio Get Tickets
    26-year-old singer-guitarist Gary Clark Jr. is a rocking soul man for a new generation. Weaned on…
    26-year-old singer-guitarist Gary Clark Jr. is a rocking soul man for a new generation. Weaned on John Lee Hooker, Lightnin' Hopkins, and T-Bone Walker, Clark fuses his deep blues influence with a love of classic hip-hop and contemporary soul. Born and raised in Austin, TX, Clark began playing guitar at age 12. Clark was soon sitting in with and learning from an array of musical icons, including Jimmie Vaughan. Vaughan, and others in the Austin music community. Clark's singular talent has attracted a bevy of artist support, including accolades from Sheryl Crow, Citizen Cope, Damian Marley, and Questlove. Are you a fan of Gary Clark Jr.? Tell us why on Twitter and Facebook.
    read more »
    7:00 Superlounge
  • My EMF
    • Ford Superlounge (Friday)
    • Get Tickets
    Ford features SWV and Goapele in their lounge tonight.  Find out more about these artists below.
    Ford features SWV and Goapele in their lounge tonight.  Find out more about these artists below.
    6:00 Superlounge
  • My EMF
    • SWV
    • SWV Bio Get Tickets
    The ESSENCE Music Festival® is proud to have SWV, one of R&B's top-selling female groups, join…
    The ESSENCE Music Festival® is proud to have SWV, one of R&B's top-selling female groups, join us for the 2012 Festival. Since their debut album in 1992, SWV has been at the top of the charts and winning awards for such hits as "I'm So Into You," "Right Here," "Downtown" and "Weak." Their recent reunion has put them on tour with Dru Hill, Salt-N-Pepa, Kelly Price and others. SWV is gearing up to release their first new studio album in over 14 years, so stay tuned! Tell us which SWV song you're most looking forward to hearing here.
    read more »
    8:45 Superlounge
  • My EMF
    • Goapele
    • Goapele Bio Get Tickets
    The Festival is happy to have singer/songwriter Goapele join us in New Orleans. Dubbed the…
    The Festival is happy to have singer/songwriter Goapele join us in New Orleans. Dubbed the "spiritual love child of Sade and D'Angelo," Goapele seamlessly blends genres while refusing to be limited by the "neo-soul" tag. Embraced from the outset by critics and fans alike, Goapele has carved the perfect niche for herself by creating music that fuses jazz, soul and hip-hop with her own beautiful poetry, as showcased on her recent release, Break of Dawn. Tell us the first time you heard Goapele's music here.
    read more »
    7:15 Superlounge
  • My EMF
    • McDonald's Superlounge (Friday)
    • Get Tickets
    McDonald's features Marsha Ambrosius, Q Parker, Super Jay, Greta Prince and Khris Royal & Dark…
    McDonald's features Marsha Ambrosius, Q Parker, Super Jay, Greta Prince and Khris Royal & Dark Matter in their lounge tonight.  Find out more about the artists below.
    6:00 Superlounge
  • My EMF
    • Marsha Ambrosius
    • Marsha Ambrosius Bio Get Tickets
    A talented, sought-after songwriter and platinum-selling artist, Marsha Ambrosius has met the next…
    A talented, sought-after songwriter and platinum-selling artist, Marsha Ambrosius has met the next challenge in her already impressive career by reinventing herself as a solo artist. Hailing from Liverpool, England, she first gave fans a taste of her talent as the singing half of the duo Floetry, which produced signature singles like “Say Yes” and “Getting Late.” Following their split, Marsha continued to build a name for herself as a songwriter and producer, creating hits for the late Michael Jackson, Alicia Keys, Justin Timberlake, Jamie Foxx and Nas, with over six GRAMMY nominations to her credit. Her debut solo CD, Late Nights & Early Mornings, offers a candid glimpse of her life and perspectives as a woman.  It includes such hits such as “I Hope She Cheats on You (With a Basketball Player)” and “Far Away.”  Are you looking forward to seeing Marsha perform at Festival?  Tell us here.
    read more »
    9:30 Superlounge
  • My EMF
    • Q Parker
    • Q Parker Bio Get Tickets
    As one of the founding members of the multi-platinum, mulit-award-winning group 112, Q Parker saw…
    As one of the founding members of the multi-platinum, mulit-award-winning group 112, Q Parker saw success and fame at an early age. Now, as a solo artist, he returns for more, with his debut project, THE MANual, featuring the chart-climbing single, "Show You How." Q always offers appeal with silky smooth vocals.  A health and fitness buff, Q will share some of his exercise secrets in an upcoming fitness blog series on essence.com.
    read more »
    7:45 Superlounge
  • My EMF
    • Super Jay
    • Super Jay Bio Get Tickets
    Take one listen to Super Jay's track "Falling In Love" and odds are you'll be singing it to…
    Take one listen to Super Jay's track "Falling In Love" and odds are you'll be singing it to yourself within 60 seconds of the tracks completion and as matter of fact that goes for almost any of this young phenom's songs. This 21-year old talent brings an infectious soulful and almost hypnotic sound to virtually every track he blesses while harboring a look and image that makes guys jealous and drives the ladies wild.
    read more »
    7:45 Superlounge
  • My EMF
    • Greta Prince
    • Greta Prince Bio Get Tickets
    ESSENCE® R&B Star 2011 winner Greta Prince makes her Superlounge debut at this year's…
    ESSENCE® R&B Star 2011 winner Greta Prince makes her Superlounge debut at this year's Festival.  Originally from Atlanta, GA, this former accounts receivable specialist followed her dreams and it paid off.  Upon winning R&B Star last year, Greta received the grand prize--[one m-dash]including a record deal with Malaco Records.  She also got to open for Mary J. Blige in front of 50,000 people at last year's Festival.  Where you there when Greta performed?  Tell us on Twitter and Facebook.
    read more »
    7:45 Superlounge
  • My EMF
    • Khris Royal & Dark Matter
    • Khris Royal & Dark Matter Bio Get Tickets
    Khris Royal & Dark Matter is a young, alternative funk band steeped in jazz flavors.  They…
    Khris Royal & Dark Matter is a young, alternative funk band steeped in jazz flavors.  They have secured their spot among the emerging, talented acts from a revilatized New Orleans by headling local and area music events with performances at the Blue Nile, Maple Leaf Bar, Tipitina's, the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival and the new Hangout Festival.  Nola.com says that "Dark Matter plays with conservatory chops but with the energy cranked up."  Are you looking forward to hearing new music at the Festival?  Tell us here.
    read more »
    6:45 Superlounge
  • My EMF
    • Verizon Wireless Superlounge (Friday)
    • Get Tickets
    Verizon Wireless features Kindred The Family Soul and Vivian Green in their lounge tonight.  Find…
    Verizon Wireless features Kindred The Family Soul and Vivian Green in their lounge tonight.  Find out more about these artists below.
    6:00 Superlounge
  • My EMF
    • Kindred the Family Soul
    • Kindred the Family Soul  Bio Get Tickets
    The new Philadelphia Sound will come alive when Kindred the Family Soul takes the stage at the 2012…
    The new Philadelphia Sound will come alive when Kindred the Family Soul takes the stage at the 2012 Festival. The down-to-earth, spiritual, young married duo (and parents of six) have managed to steadily build a devoted following with their unique mix of soulful R&B-and hip-hop-minded grooves, conscious lyrics and refreshingly honest songwriting. Their chemistry, showmanship and songwriting often bring about comparisons to such iconic duos as Ashford and Simpson, Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell, and Roberta Flack and Donny Hathaway. Kindred the Family Soul's new CD, Love Has No Recession, paints stories of love and devotion, the human struggle, redemption, perseverance, social consciousness and family values. What other famous musical duo does Kindred the Family Soul remind you of? Tell us here.
    read more »
    10:30 Superlounge
  • My EMF
    • Vivian Green
    • Vivian Green Bio Get Tickets
    Singer/writer/pianist Vivian Green will share her amazing talents at the 2012 Festival. A…
    Singer/writer/pianist Vivian Green will share her amazing talents at the 2012 Festival. A classically trained pianist and vocalist, Green got her first songwriting credit for the song "Dear God," recorded by Boyz II Men, and has had success of her own with the hits "Emotional Rollercoaster" and "Gotta Go, Gotta Leave." She has shared the stage with Maxwell, Teena Marie and Chaka Khan. She's portrayed Billie Holiday in the movie De-Lovely, appeared in the TV series American Dreams and wrote the music for David E. Talbert’s stage play Love in the Nick of Tyme. Green recently released her third CD, Beautiful. Are you looking forward to seeing Vivan Green perform? Tell us here.
    read more »
    9:00 Superlounge
  • Superlounge / Saturday
  • My EMF
    • Coca-Cola Superlounge (Saturday)
    • Get Tickets
    Festival presenter Coca-Cola® features Dru Hill and The Original Pinettes Brass Band in their…
    Festival presenter Coca-Cola® features Dru Hill and The Original Pinettes Brass Band in their lounge tonight.  Find out more about the artists below.
    6:00 Superlounge
  • My EMF
    • Dru Hill
    • Dru Hill Bio Get Tickets
    The 2012 ESSENCE Music Festival® is excited to have R&B group DRU HILL join us for this year's…
    The 2012 ESSENCE Music Festival® is excited to have R&B group DRU HILL join us for this year's event. Stay tuned for more info on this platinum-selling, award winning group.
    read more »
    8:45 Superlounge
  • My EMF
    • The Original Pinettes Brass Band
    • The Original Pinettes Brass Band Bio Get Tickets
    The Original Pinettes Brass Band, the world's only all female brass band, was formed by Jeffery…
    The Original Pinettes Brass Band, the world's only all female brass band, was formed by Jeffery Herbert in 1991 and is composed of women born and raised in New Orleans, Louisiana, and have been pressing their way in this male-dominated genre to make their mark. “Not even Hurricane Katrina could stop us from doing what we love,” said Janine Waters of the band. “The band members were misplaced after the storm hit. We were in six different cities not knowing if everyone (and their families) had made it out safely. But now, we are back like you never heard us before. The Original Pinettes Brass Band is here to stay...thank you, God!” The band is on a journey of becoming the best in the industry. Tell us if your looking forward to seeing The Original Pinettes Brass Band perform here.
    read more »
    7:30 Superlounge
  • My EMF
    • Ford Superlounge (Saturday)
    • Get Tickets
    Ford features Big Sam's Funky Nation, Stephanie Mills and Leah LaBelle in their lounge tonight. …
    Ford features Big Sam's Funky Nation, Stephanie Mills and Leah LaBelle in their lounge tonight.  Find out more about these artists below.
    6:00 Superlounge
  • My EMF
    • Big Sam's Funky Nation
    • Big Sam's Funky Nation Bio Get Tickets
    Big Sam's Funky Nation engages and delights audiences across the country with their high-energy…
    Big Sam's Funky Nation engages and delights audiences across the country with their high-energy performance and showmanship and will surely bring what they're known for to the Festival stage. Hailing from New Orleans, Big Sam always entertains audiences with his exhilarating brand of high-voltage funk, rock, jazz and hip-hop, termed "NoladelicPowerfunk." Big Sam's Funky Nation has wowed crowds at major festivals and events, including the New Orleans Jazz Heritage Festival, SXSW and countless others. Big Sam's Funky Nation has also been featured on LIVE! with Regis & Kelly and, more recently, in HBO's original series Treme. A Big Sam show is one not to be missed. Do you love seeing bands perform? Tell us here.
    read more »
    10:45 Superlounge
  • My EMF
    • Stephanie Mills
    • Stephanie Mills Bio Get Tickets
    Stephanie Mills has one of the most distinctive voices in contemporary music, an ultra soulful…
    Stephanie Mills has one of the most distinctive voices in contemporary music, an ultra soulful songstress whose onstage energy and power inspires standing ovations wherever she performs. She is a legend who, in over the span of a 25-plus year illustrious career, has distinguished herself as an actress and performer who is as at home on the Broadway stage as she is in the recording studio with a loyal and dedicated audience that has been with her all the way. Share your favorite Stephanie Mills song here.
    read more »
    9:00 Superlounge
  • My EMF
    • Leah Labelle
    • Leah Labelle Bio Get Tickets
    Leah Labelle didn't get discovered the day she met Pharrell Williams when his band N.E.R.D.…
    Leah Labelle didn't get discovered the day she met Pharrell Williams when his band N.E.R.D. performed in her hometown of Seattle, but her prediction that he would produce her album did come true. Williams is responsible for half of the songs on Labelle’s upcoming debut album, with the other half being produced by Jermaine Dupri.  Labelle has taken her sultry, soulful voice, edgy style, and playful spirit with her into the studio to record a series of summery, hook-laden jams. Her first single “Sexify” is a lighthearted, girl-talk song.  She gets a chance to express her love for hip-hop on the breezy “Boxx Chevy.” Williams and Dupri have signed her to a joint venture with Williams' label I Am Other, Dupri''s label So So Def, and Epic Records.  Are you looking forward to seeing Leah's debut at the Festival?  Let us know on Facebook and Twitter.
    read more »
    7:45 Superlounge
  • My EMF
    • McDonald's Superlounge (Saturday)
    • Get Tickets
    McDonald's features Eric Roberson and Teedra Moses in their lounge tonight.  Find out more about…
    McDonald's features Eric Roberson and Teedra Moses in their lounge tonight.  Find out more about the artists below.
    6:00 Superlounge
  • My EMF
    • Eric Roberson
    • Eric Roberson Bio Get Tickets
    Singer, songerwriter and producer Eric "Erro" Roberson has developed a musical mix of soul,…
    Singer, songerwriter and producer Eric "Erro" Roberson has developed a musical mix of soul, R&B, house, hip hop, jazz and rock that has allowed him to release seven independent albums, garnered him top awards and nominations, the opportunity to work with major artists including Jill Scott, Musiq Soulchild, 112 and Will Smith, and the chance to tour all over the world. His originality, electric live performances, impressive freestyles, genuine humility and ability to connect with people through his music have earned him the respect, appreciation and support of fans everywhere. Tell us here if you're a fan of Eric Roberson.
    read more »
    10:00 Superlounge
  • My EMF
    • Teedra Moses
    • Teedra Moses Bio Get Tickets
    Teedra Moses was born and raised in New Orleans, Louisiana to a gospel singing mother, Shirley…
    Teedra Moses was born and raised in New Orleans, Louisiana to a gospel singing mother, Shirley Moses. She later moved to Los Angeles, California with her mother and three siblings. Prior to becoming a recording artist, Moses worked as an assistant wardrobe stylist for Will Smith, Kelis, R. Kelly, and No Doubt. Following the loss of her mother, Moses decided to follow her heart and began making music.  Her debut album Complex Simplicity received critical acclaim and found success on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums, the Top Independent Albums and the Top Heatseekers charts.  Moses has written songs for other artists including Mary J. Blige, Christina Milian, Macy Gray and a host of others. Moses’ long awaited sophomore release, The Lioness, is scheduled to be released 2012 on the Maybach Music Group imprint.  Are you a Teedra Moses fan?  Tell us here.
    read more »
    7:15 Superlounge
  • My EMF
    • Verizon Wireless Superlounge (Saturday)
    • Get Tickets
    Verizon Wireless features The Stylistics and Robert Glasper Experiment in their lounge tonight. …
    Verizon Wireless features The Stylistics and Robert Glasper Experiment in their lounge tonight.  Find out more about these artists below.
    6:00 Superlounge
  • My EMF
    • The Stylistics
    • The Stylistics Bio Get Tickets
    Soul legends The Stylistics will bring the classic Philadelphia Sound to the 2012 Festival. With…
    Soul legends The Stylistics will bring the classic Philadelphia Sound to the 2012 Festival. With their charisma, style and harmony, The Stylistics evolved into one of the best-selling soul groups ever. The quartet recorded a remarkable 10 straight Top 10 hits during the early 1970s, have been featured on more than 40 albums and have toured across the world for more than 40 years. The group captured the heart of the country with such chart-topping hits as the Grammy-nominated "You Are Everything," "You Make Me Feel Brand New," "Betcha By Golly, Wow," "Break Up to Make Up," "I'm Stone in Love with You" and "Hurry Up This Way Again." Share with us the first time you heard The Stylistics here.
    read more »
    9:00 Superlounge
  • My EMF
    • Robert Glasper Experiment
    • Robert Glasper Experiment Bio Get Tickets
    The Robert Glasper Experiment boldly stakes out new musical territory and transcends any notion of…
    The Robert Glasper Experiment boldly stakes out new musical territory and transcends any notion of genre, drawing from jazz, hip-hop, R&B and rock. Glasper has long kept one foot planted firmly in jazz and the other in hip-hop and R&B. He's worked extensively with Q-Tip, playing keyboards on the rapper's album The Renaissance and co-writing the album single "Life Is Better." Glasper also serves as the music director in yasiin bey’s touring band, and has toured with the multi-platinum R&B singer Maxwell. Glasper’s 2009 album Double Booked earned the keyboardist his first GRAMMY nomination for "All Matter" and his current CD Black Radio features many of Glasper's famous friends including Erykah Badu, Bilal, Lupe Fiasco, Lalah Hathaway, Ledisi, Chrisette Michele, Musiq Soulchild, Me'shell Ndegeocello, and Stokley Williams (Mint Condition).
    read more »
    7:30 Superlounge
  • Superlounge / Sunday
  • My EMF
    • Coca-Cola Superlounge (Sunday)
    • Get Tickets
    Festival presenter Coca-Cola® features Estelle and Luke James in their lounge tonight.  Find out…
    Festival presenter Coca-Cola® features Estelle and Luke James in their lounge tonight.  Find out more about the artists below.
    6:00 Superlounge
  • My EMF
    • Estelle
    • Estelle Bio Get Tickets
    Grammy Award–winning vocalist Estelle returns to the Festival in 2012. In just a few short years,…
    Grammy Award–winning vocalist Estelle returns to the Festival in 2012. In just a few short years, Estelle has become a mainstay on the charts and a red carpet celebrity. With her highly anticipated new album, All of Me, releasing in early 2012, this West London native will give fans an in-depth look into her soul. The lustrous songs will flawlessly demonstrate the richness of her musical history, from hip-hop to R&B, from European techno to pop. Estelle continues to dedicate herself to a myriad of philanthropic organizations. Her charitable work includes support to women and disadvantaged youth worldwide, disaster relief and a relentless fight against AIDS. How did you get introduced to Estelle's music? Tell us here.
    read more »
    8:30 Superlounge
  • My EMF
    • Luke James
    • Luke James Bio Get Tickets
    Multi-talented singer and songwriter Luke James hails from New Orleans and embodies a creative…
    Multi-talented singer and songwriter Luke James hails from New Orleans and embodies a creative versatility and seductive allure that’s prime for music today. James relocated to Los Angeles where he promptly began singing background for Tyrese and honing his songwriting skills penning songs for Chris Brown, Justin Bieber, Brittney Spears, Keri Hilson and Brandy. James took flight as a fervent singer in his own right and prepared for his solo debut Made to Love. His lead single, “I Want You” is packed with complex rhythmic breaks and melodic shifts that showcase James’ phenomenal soul-drenched vocal range. Are you looking forward to seeing Luke James at the Festival? Let us know here.
    read more »
    7:00 Superlounge
  • My EMF
    • Ford Superlounge (Sunday)
    • Get Tickets
    Ford features Raheem DeVaughn and Bridget Kelly in their lounge tonight.  Find out more about…
    Ford features Raheem DeVaughn and Bridget Kelly in their lounge tonight.  Find out more about these artists below.
    6:00 Superlounge
  • My EMF
    • Raheem DeVaughn
    • Raheem DeVaughn Bio Get Tickets
    This singer/songwriter returns to the Festival as a Superlounge favorite. The son of renowned jazz…
    This singer/songwriter returns to the Festival as a Superlounge favorite. The son of renowned jazz musician Abdul Wadud, DeVaughn has been dubbed one of modern soul's most beloved artists. He's releasing his latest CD, The Love & War MasterPeace, and will be featured in his first acting role in Who Do You Love, a biopic about Chess Records. He also leads the DMV Movement, an artistic union of D.C.-Maryland and Virginia artists, and has partnered with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to produce a series of PSAs about HIV/AIDS prevention. Is Raheem one of your favorite artists? Tell us here.
    read more »
    10:30 Superlounge
  • My EMF
    • Bridget Kelly
    • Bridget Kelly Bio Get Tickets
    Born and raised in New York City, Bridget Kelly grew up in a household where Motown, jazz and pop…
    Born and raised in New York City, Bridget Kelly grew up in a household where Motown, jazz and pop songs were always playing and Kelly's love affair with music was sparked at a very early age. Kelly's training at LaGuardia High School, her constant songwriting and performing everywhere from open mic shows to the city subway helped her land a recording and publishing deal with Roc Nation. When asked what she would like to accomplish as an artist, Kelly says "I hope to touch someone's life through my writing or my voice, even if it's just one person. If what I write and sing about is relatable to people, I'll be successful." Are you looking forward to hearing new artists like Bridget Kelly? Tell us here.
    read more »
    7:30 Superlounge
  • My EMF
    • McDonald's Superlounge (Sunday)
    • Get Tickets
    McDonald's features Melanie Fiona, Carl Thomas and Alex Boyd in their lounge tonight.  Find out…
    McDonald's features Melanie Fiona, Carl Thomas and Alex Boyd in their lounge tonight.  Find out more about the artists below.
    6:00 Superlounge
  • My EMF
    • Melanie Fiona
    • Melanie Fiona Bio Get Tickets
    "The 'MF' in the album title represents my initials, but it also gets at the many facets of myself…
    "The 'MF' in the album title represents my initials, but it also gets at the many facets of myself as an artist and a young woman" says Melanie Fiona. "It can be viewed as the 'Mighty Fine Life' in times of triumph and success, but also the 'Mother-F-ing Life' when I'm dealing with frustration or misfortune. I celebrate both. I feel it would be dishonest if everything was all about glitz and glamour. It's about the balance of life, the yin and the yang, the good and the bad, all of that."  Fiona won two of music's highest honors for the smash hit she co-wrote with Cee-Lo Green, "Fool For You." The duo achieved Grammy® Awards for both "Best Traditional R&B Performance" and "Best R&B Song."  Clearly, The MF Life points the way forward for a boldly captivating new voice with an auspicious future.
    read more »
    10:30 Superlounge
  • My EMF
    • Carl Thomas
    • Carl Thomas Bio Get Tickets
    Carl Thomas is back! Thomas was the first R&B artist on Bad Boy Entertainment. Thomas is best…
    Carl Thomas is back! Thomas was the first R&B artist on Bad Boy Entertainment. Thomas is best known for his #1 R&B smash “I Wish” and the windswept hit single “Summer Rain”. It was his indefatigable passion and not industry position or fanfare that beckoned him back to the studio for his new album, Conquer, his first album in four years which is bursting with lush orchestrations and entrancing chords. Not wishing to travel the same traditional R&B course, Thomas has carved his own melodious niche. While he wants to make timeless and genre-pushing music, his mission this time is even grander in scope. As he puts it, “the word conquer is an admittance that you’ve won. With the battles in my life over the past several years, I definitely consider myself victorious.”  Have you experienced Carl Thomas live? Tell us on Facebook and Twitter.
    read more »
    9:00 Superlounge
  • My EMF
    • Alex Boyd
    • Alex Boyd Bio Get Tickets
    By the young age of 13, Alex Boyd was dancing with Debbie Allen at the Kennedy Center, singing with…
    By the young age of 13, Alex Boyd was dancing with Debbie Allen at the Kennedy Center, singing with Patti LaBelle and acting alongside Bruce Willis. While at D.C.'s famous Duke Ellington School of the Arts, Alex discovered Musiq Soulchild, D'Angelo and A Tribe Called Quest all the while being trained as a classical vocalist and soul music became his focus. He possesses a strong reverence for the soul masters, which is heard in his expressive vocals, as well as throughout the instrumentation and production on his debut. The upcoming album's first single, "Wish I Knew" was produced by Carvin & Ivan of Musiq Soulchild, Jazmine Sullivan, and Jill Scott fame. Alex is currently in the studio putting the final touches on his debut album. Are you a fan of Alex Boyd? Tell us why on Twitter and Facebook.
    read more »
    7:45 Superlounge
  • My EMF
    • Verizon Wireless Superlounge (Sunday)
    • Get Tickets
    Verizon Wireless features Eve and The Stooges Brass Band in their lounge tonight.  Find out more…
    Verizon Wireless features Eve and The Stooges Brass Band in their lounge tonight.  Find out more about these artists below.
    6:00 Superlounge
  • My EMF
    • Eve
    • Eve Bio Get Tickets
    The ESSENCE Music Festival is excited for the "happy homecoming" for triple-threat entertainer Eve.…
    The ESSENCE Music Festival is excited for the "happy homecoming" for triple-threat entertainer Eve. After a four-year hiatus, Eve returns with LIP LOCK, a more mature and adventurous album, that she calls her best effort to date. Eve, the woman who brought us hits like "What Ya Want," "Love Is Blind" and the Grammy® winning "Let Me Blow Ya Mind" (featuring Gwen Stefani), was a key component in the seminal rap squad the Ruff Ryders. The self-professed "pitbull in a skirt" is also a clothing designer and an actress who's been featured in XXX, Barbershop and it's sequel; The Woodsman, The Cookout and her self-titled sitcom. Which cuts are you most looking forward to hearing from Eve? Tell us on Facebook and Twitter.
    read more »
    8:45 Superlounge
  • My EMF
    • The Stooges Brass Band
    • The Stooges Brass Band Bio Get Tickets
    The Stooges Brass Band's free spirited, second-line groove intertwined with R&B and hip hop…
    The Stooges Brass Band's free spirited, second-line groove intertwined with R&B and hip hop styles have established them as one of the elite brass bands of New Orleans.  This hard working band victoriously battled in the finals for the title of Red Bull Street Kings in NOLA in 2010. With this win, The Stooges Brass Band received an all-expense paid trip for a recording and mentorship session with a producer in the Red Bull Studios in California. In April 2011, The Stooges Brass Band were awarded the title of "Best Contemporary Brass Band" at the Big Easy Music Awards. Whether they're second-lining in the back streets of the Crescent City, or performing in clubs across the country, The Stooges Brass Band immerse crowds in a high-energy, cut loose vibe that's contemporary yet deeply rooted in the culturally rich musical legacy of city of New Orleans.  Are you looking forward to seeing this award-winning brass band?  Tell us here.
    read more »
    7:15 Superlounge
  • Essence.com Live
ESSENCE.com is the fierce, fun and fabulous daily destination for today's Black woman — and at the ESSENCE Music Festival, the most popular features of our site come alive over three days at the Convention Center. Check out our Street Style fashion shows, our Coffee Talk conversations with surprise celebrity guests, and more!
  • Essence.com Live / Friday
  • My EMF
    • Amanda Seales - DJ
    • Amanda Seales - DJ Bio Free
    Amanda Seales is the epitome of a Renaissance woman. Working within multiple realms of the arts as…
    Amanda Seales is the epitome of a Renaissance woman. Working within multiple realms of the arts as a DJ, recording artist, visual artist, host, culture critic, poet, speaker, playwright, actress and more. She has built her career on creativity, quality and integrity. From hosting and providing commentary on television to creating web programming, appearing on two seasons of Russell Simmons' Def Poetry Jam, speaking at numerous colleges and universities across the nation, exhibiting/selling her artwork on her DivaWorksofArt.com site and working with musicians, she has always remained genuine and honest in her message. Her most recent works include, Death of the Diva, a hilarious one-woman musical narrative challenging pop culture's portrayal of women one character at a time, serving as co-host on MTV's new late night show, HIP-HOP POV and independently releasing her newest hip-hop soul project, Technicolor Lover.
    read more »
    9:00 Essence.com Live
  • My EMF
    • Free - Host
    • Free - Host Bio Free
    A woman with grace, intellect and individuality, Marie "Free" Wright is an accomplished media…
    A woman with grace, intellect and individuality, Marie "Free" Wright is an accomplished media personality, television producer and philanthropist. She is best known as one of the original co-hosts of BET's top-rated 106 & Park countdown show, where for five years she interviewed the likes of Michael Jackson, Denzel Washington, Halle Berry and Alicia Keys. Following her tenure at BET, Free joined the world of radio as an on-air jock at such popular stations as KKBT 100.3 The Beat in Los Angeles, and on "The Ed Lover Morning Show" on Power 105.1 in New York City. Currently she can be heard daily on WPGC 95.5’s "More Music Mornings with Free," the highly rated morning drive show in the Washington, DC, market, and you can hear her weekly segments on the internationally syndicated radio show "Live in the Den.” In addition to her influence on television and radio, Free has a strong presence on the Internet. Black Web 2.0 recently noted her as one of "The 100 Most Powerful Black Women on Twitter," citing her 190,000-plus followers. Additionally, she pens a popular blog on Freesworld.com, where she combines original reporting with commentary, music/movie reviews and advice. In her spare time, Free enjoys mentoring youth and speaking on gender issues and pop culture.
    read more »
    9:00 Essence.com Live
  • My EMF
    • Sixx King - Co-Host
    • Sixx King - Co-Host Bio Free
    As a writer, producer, director, actor, and activist, Sixx King stays on the cutting-edge of…
    As a writer, producer, director, actor, and activist, Sixx King stays on the cutting-edge of what’s new and hot in entertainment. Through his company, Sixx Degrees Media, King has produced music videos for some of the industry's brightest artists. In 2008, King was tapped as an on-air personality for Philadelphia stations Radio One WPHI 100.3 The Beat and WRNB 107.9, taking home the March of Dimes A.I.R. award for Best New On Air Talent. Also in 2008, King formed Youth, Politics & Empowerment, a program that introduces young people to film and television producing while learning about the political process. While recovering from a few failed relationships, King began blogging about these topics, which led him to the ESSENCE online audience. His candor was an immediate hit and spawned his first book, titled Giving Love a Chance: The Secrets to Men Women and Relationships. In 2012 King directed the documentary Mothers of No Tomorrow, with former NBA champion John Salley as an executive producer. The film sheds light on the journey black mothers are forced to take when their children are lost to intraracial violence.  
    read more »
    9:00 Essence.com Live
  • My EMF
    • GET LIFTED: BODY BY DENISE
    • GET LIFTED: BODY BY DENISE  Bio Free
    Every Sunday, ESSENCE.com uplifts and encourages our readers to reach their highest potential —…

    Every Sunday, ESSENCE.com uplifts and encourages our readers to reach their highest potential — mentally, spiritually, and physically. We bring that spirit to our Live Stage with the “Body by Denise” workouts, a great way to get each day of your EMF experience started right!

    read more »
    9:30 Essence.com Live
  • My EMF
    • DENISE WARREN
    • DENISE WARREN Bio Free
    In the past 25 years, Denise Warren has helped well over 150 members successfully lose 100 pounds…

    In the past 25 years, Denise Warren has helped well over 150 members successfully lose 100 pounds at her highly anticipated fitness class Body By Denise in New York. A winner of a 2010 Hoodie Award for Best Community Leader, Warren has made it her goal to erase obesity in her community by helping individuals one by one live a healthier lifestyle. In 1986, the Queens native became the proud owner and founder of Body By Denise Inc., now one of the largest group fitness and total body classes in New York State. Servicing well over 350 men and women per class, who come out for a high energy, intensified yet rewarding workout three to four times a week,   Body by Denise is a no-nonsense training workout that is designed to help you lose weight the right way and keep it off.

    read more »
    9:30 Essence.com Live
  • My EMF
    • NATURAL HAIR REVOLUTION
    • NATURAL HAIR REVOLUTION Bio Free
    Big Chops, locs, twists, glorious Afros – chances are that wherever you live, you’ve noticed…

    Big Chops, locs, twists, glorious Afros – chances are that wherever you live, you’ve noticed women proudly rocking their textured strands. Every Thursday on ESSENCE.com we celebrate the growing natural hair movement, and on the 2012 ESSENCE.com Live Stage we’ll share quick tips for curly girls.

    read more »
    11:30 Essence.com Live
  • My EMF
    • Tamika Fletcher
    • Tamika Fletcher Bio Free
    In a little over 10 years, Tamika Fletcher has established herself as one of the leading experts in…
    In a little over 10 years, Tamika Fletcher has established herself as one of the leading experts in beauty, curly hair care and do-it-yourself lifestyle options. As the co-founder and owner of Natural Resources Salon in Houston, Texas, Tamika incorporates a creative and artistic approach both behind the chair and within all of her areas of expertise. In the past year alone, Tamika has gained national recognition for her work, with features on ESSENCE.com and on the national TV shows Deals and Mirror/Mirror; she also regularly appears on local media outlets like KHOU News 11, KTRK ABC 13 and My Fox Houston, offering social commentary on breaking news.
    read more »
    11:30 Essence.com Live
  • My EMF
    • THE STREET STYLE FASHION SHOW, BROUGHT TO YOU BY STATE FARM
    • THE STREET STYLE FASHION SHOW, BROUGHT TO YOU BY STATE FARM Bio Free
    Sure, celebrities have fabulous style — but we take most of our fashion inspiration from the real…

    Sure, celebrities have fabulous style — but we take most of our fashion inspiration from the real women we spot all around us. An extension of ESSENCE.com’s weekly Street Style photo gallery (Fridays), the Street Style Fashion Show puts the spotlight on some of the ESSENCE Music Festival’s fiercest ladies.

    read more »
    12:05 Essence.com Live
  • Essence.com Live / Saturday
  • My EMF
    • Amanda Seales - DJ
    • Amanda Seales - DJ Bio Free
    Amanda Seales is the epitome of a Renaissance woman. Working within multiple realms of the arts as…
    Amanda Seales is the epitome of a Renaissance woman. Working within multiple realms of the arts as a DJ, recording artist, visual artist, host, culture critic, poet, speaker, playwright, actress and more. She has built her career on creativity, quality and integrity. From hosting and providing commentary on television to creating web programming, appearing on two seasons of Russell Simmons' Def Poetry Jam, speaking at numerous colleges and universities across the nation, exhibiting/selling her artwork on her DivaWorksofArt.com site and working with musicians, she has always remained genuine and honest in her message. Her most recent works include, Death of the Diva, a hilarious one-woman musical narrative challenging pop culture's portrayal of women one character at a time, serving as co-host on MTV's new late night show, HIP-HOP POV and independently releasing her newest hip-hop soul project, Technicolor Lover.
    read more »
    9:20 Essence.com Live
  • My EMF
    • Free - Host
    • Free - Host Bio Free
    A woman with grace, intellect and individuality, Marie "Free" Wright is an accomplished media…
    A woman with grace, intellect and individuality, Marie "Free" Wright is an accomplished media personality, television producer and philanthropist. She is best known as one of the original co-hosts of BET's top-rated 106 & Park countdown show, where for five years she interviewed the likes of Michael Jackson, Denzel Washington, Halle Berry and Alicia Keys. Following her tenure at BET, Free joined the world of radio as an on-air jock at such popular stations as KKBT 100.3 The Beat in Los Angeles, and on "The Ed Lover Morning Show" on Power 105.1 in New York City. Currently she can be heard daily on WPGC 95.5’s "More Music Mornings with Free," the highly rated morning drive show in the Washington, DC, market, and you can hear her weekly segments on the internationally syndicated radio show "Live in the Den.” In addition to her influence on television and radio, Free has a strong presence on the Internet. Black Web 2.0 recently noted her as one of "The 100 Most Powerful Black Women on Twitter," citing her 190,000-plus followers. Additionally, she pens a popular blog on Freesworld.com, where she combines original reporting with commentary, music/movie reviews and advice. In her spare time, Free enjoys mentoring youth and speaking on gender issues and pop culture.
    read more »
    9:00 Essence.com Live
  • My EMF
    • Sixx King - Co-Host
    • Sixx King - Co-Host Bio Free
    As a writer, producer, director, actor, and activist, Sixx King stays on the cutting-edge of…
    As a writer, producer, director, actor, and activist, Sixx King stays on the cutting-edge of what’s new and hot in entertainment. Through his company, Sixx Degrees Media, King has produced music videos for some of the industry's brightest artists. In 2008, King was tapped as an on-air personality for Philadelphia stations Radio One WPHI 100.3 The Beat and WRNB 107.9, taking home the March of Dimes A.I.R. award for Best New On Air Talent. Also in 2008, King formed Youth, Politics & Empowerment, a program that introduces young people to film and television producing while learning about the political process. While recovering from a few failed relationships, King began blogging about these topics, which led him to the ESSENCE online audience. His candor was an immediate hit and spawned his first book, titled Giving Love a Chance: The Secrets to Men Women and Relationships. In 2012 King directed the documentary Mothers of No Tomorrow, with former NBA champion John Salley as an executive producer. The film sheds light on the journey black mothers are forced to take when their children are lost to intraracial violence.  
    read more »
    10:06 Essence.com Live
  • My EMF
    • GET LIFTED: BODY BY DENISE
    • GET LIFTED: BODY BY DENISE  Bio Free
    Every Sunday, ESSENCE.com uplifts and encourages our readers to reach their highest potential —…

    Every Sunday, ESSENCE.com uplifts and encourages our readers to reach their highest potential — mentally, spiritually, and physically. We bring that spirit to our Live Stage with the “Body by Denise” workouts, a great way to get each day of your EMF experience started right!

    read more »
    9:30 Essence.com Live
  • My EMF
    • DENISE WARREN
    • DENISE WARREN Bio Free
    In the past 25 years, Denise Warren has helped well over 150 members successfully lose 100 pounds…

    In the past 25 years, Denise Warren has helped well over 150 members successfully lose 100 pounds at her highly anticipated fitness class Body By Denise in New York. A winner of a 2010 Hoodie Award for Best Community Leader, Warren has made it her goal to erase obesity in her community by helping individuals one by one live a healthier lifestyle. In 1986, the Queens native became the proud owner and founder of Body By Denise Inc., now one of the largest group fitness and total body classes in New York State. Servicing well over 350 men and women per class, who come out for a high energy, intensified yet rewarding workout three to four times a week,   Body by Denise is a no-nonsense training workout that is designed to help you lose weight the right way and keep it off.

    read more »
    9:30 Essence.com Live
  • My EMF
    • BEAUTY ALL-ACCESS
    • BEAUTY ALL-ACCESS Bio Free
    ESSENCE’s own experts — Beauty Director Corynne Corbett and Senior Beauty Editor Tasha Turner…

    ESSENCE’s own experts — Beauty Director Corynne Corbett and Senior Beauty Editor Tasha Turner — take you behind the scenes to share must-have products, pro tips and more in Beauty All-Access, an ESSENCE.com video series. They bring their expertise (plus special guests!) to our 2012 Live Stage.

    read more »
    10:30 Essence.com Live
  • My EMF
    • CORYNNE CORBETT
    • CORYNNE CORBETT Bio Free
    Corynne L. Corbett is beauty director for ESSENCE. In this role, Corbett is responsible for leading…
    Corynne L. Corbett is beauty director for ESSENCE. In this role, Corbett is responsible for leading the beauty team and executing the overall beauty vision for the magazine. She is a veteran journalist who uses her 20 years of experience in fashion, beauty and lifestyle to create engaging and compelling content across a variety of media platforms. Before joining ESSENCE, she served as executive editor and beauty and wellness director of Real Simple magazine. Additionally, she served in the role of editor-in-chief at both Mode and Heart & Soul magazines. Prior to this, she spent 8 years in the beauty department for Elle.
    read more »
    10:30 Essence.com Live
  • My EMF
    • Tasha Turner
    • Tasha Turner Bio Free
    Tasha Turner is a multitalented, dedicated industry-best at bringing the glamorous and scientific…
    Tasha Turner is a multitalented, dedicated industry-best at bringing the glamorous and scientific world of beauty to the lives of real women. As Senior Beauty Editor at ESSENCE magazine and an expert with more than a decade of experience, Tasha is known for discerning trends and creating compelling visuals while effectively reporting on beauty and self care. She has worked with some of the best hair and makeup artists, doctors, writers and photographers in the business. Tasha recently served as the Senior Beauty Editor at InStyle special issues, which included the seasonal Weddings, Hair, and Makeover issues.  As Senior Beauty Editor of ESSENCE magazine (where she rose from Accessories Editor), she became the architect of the annual Readers’ Choice Beauty Awards and special Hot Hair issues. Previously she served as Beauty Director at Honey magazine; Beauty & Accessories Editor at Vibe; and Editorial Beauty & Accessories Assistant at Town & Country.
    read more »
    10:30 Essence.com Live
  • My EMF
    • ASK DR. SHERRY LIVE
    • ASK DR. SHERRY LIVE Bio Free
    Got a relationship dilemma? Just as she’s helped numerous athletes and celebrities, Dr. Sherry…

    Got a relationship dilemma? Just as she’s helped numerous athletes and celebrities, Dr. Sherry Blake (well known from TV’s Braxton Family Values) helps ESSENCE.com readers every Friday.


    read more »
    10:55 Essence.com Live
  • My EMF
    • Dr. Sherry Blake
    • Dr. Sherry Blake Bio Free
    Dr. Sherry Blake, better known as TV’s “Dr. Sherry,” is a therapist to the stars —…
    Dr. Sherry Blake, better known as TV’s “Dr. Sherry,” is a therapist to the stars — though she considers everyone as a “star” in their own right. With a direct, nonthreatening style and a touch of humor, Dr. Sherry empowers and inspires people to reach their goals, and has worked with everyone from award-winning entertainers to top professional athletes to everyday people. Sought after by major news network affiliates and radio stations, she has been recognized for her work by numerous organizations and has served on several Boards of Directors in the metropolitan Atlanta area,where she is in private practice at Touchstone Psychological Services. Her new book The Single Married Woman focuses on empowering women as they deal with balancing multiple roles in their relationships.
    read more »
    10:55 Essence.com Live
  • My EMF
    • THE STREET STYLE FASHION SHOW, BROUGHT TO YOU BY STATE FARM
    • THE STREET STYLE FASHION SHOW, BROUGHT TO YOU BY STATE FARM Bio Free
    Sure, celebrities have fabulous style — but we take most of our fashion inspiration from the real…

    Sure, celebrities have fabulous style — but we take most of our fashion inspiration from the real women we spot all around us. An extension of ESSENCE.com’s weekly Street Style photo gallery (Fridays), the Street Style Fashion Show puts the spotlight on some of the ESSENCE Music Festival’s fiercest ladies.

    read more »
    12:05 Essence.com Live
  • My EMF
    • COFFEE TALK: SURPRISE CELEBRITY GUEST!
    • COFFEE TALK: SURPRISE CELEBRITY GUEST! Bio Free
    Ever wish you could just chat and chill with a star? ESSENCE.com’s video series Coffee Talk,…

    Ever wish you could just chat and chill with a star? ESSENCE.com’s video series Coffee Talk, hosted by Entertainment Editor Yolanda Sangweni, gives you that experience.  Now we bring it live and in person: Stop by to see what celebrity is waiting to meet you!

    read more »
    12:40 Essence.com Live
  • Essence.com Live / Sunday
  • My EMF
    • Amanda Seales - DJ
    • Amanda Seales - DJ Bio Free
    Amanda Seales is the epitome of a Renaissance woman. Working within multiple realms of the arts as…
    Amanda Seales is the epitome of a Renaissance woman. Working within multiple realms of the arts as a DJ, recording artist, visual artist, host, culture critic, poet, speaker, playwright, actress and more. She has built her career on creativity, quality and integrity. From hosting and providing commentary on television to creating web programming, appearing on two seasons of Russell Simmons' Def Poetry Jam, speaking at numerous colleges and universities across the nation, exhibiting/selling her artwork on her DivaWorksofArt.com site and working with musicians, she has always remained genuine and honest in her message. Her most recent works include, Death of the Diva, a hilarious one-woman musical narrative challenging pop culture's portrayal of women one character at a time, serving as co-host on MTV's new late night show, HIP-HOP POV and independently releasing her newest hip-hop soul project, Technicolor Lover.
    read more »
    9:20 Essence.com Live
  • My EMF
    • Free - Host
    • Free - Host Bio Free
    A woman with grace, intellect and individuality, Marie "Free" Wright is an accomplished media…
    A woman with grace, intellect and individuality, Marie "Free" Wright is an accomplished media personality, television producer and philanthropist. She is best known as one of the original co-hosts of BET's top-rated 106 & Park countdown show, where for five years she interviewed the likes of Michael Jackson, Denzel Washington, Halle Berry and Alicia Keys. Following her tenure at BET, Free joined the world of radio as an on-air jock at such popular stations as KKBT 100.3 The Beat in Los Angeles, and on "The Ed Lover Morning Show" on Power 105.1 in New York City. Currently she can be heard daily on WPGC 95.5’s "More Music Mornings with Free," the highly rated morning drive show in the Washington, DC, market, and you can hear her weekly segments on the internationally syndicated radio show "Live in the Den.” In addition to her influence on television and radio, Free has a strong presence on the Internet. Black Web 2.0 recently noted her as one of "The 100 Most Powerful Black Women on Twitter," citing her 190,000-plus followers. Additionally, she pens a popular blog on Freesworld.com, where she combines original reporting with commentary, music/movie reviews and advice. In her spare time, Free enjoys mentoring youth and speaking on gender issues and pop culture.
    read more »
    9:00 Essence.com Live
  • My EMF
    • Sixx King - Co-Host
    • Sixx King - Co-Host Bio Free
    As a writer, producer, director, actor, and activist, Sixx King stays on the cutting-edge of…
    As a writer, producer, director, actor, and activist, Sixx King stays on the cutting-edge of what’s new and hot in entertainment. Through his company, Sixx Degrees Media, King has produced music videos for some of the industry's brightest artists. In 2008, King was tapped as an on-air personality for Philadelphia stations Radio One WPHI 100.3 The Beat and WRNB 107.9, taking home the March of Dimes A.I.R. award for Best New On Air Talent. Also in 2008, King formed Youth, Politics & Empowerment, a program that introduces young people to film and television producing while learning about the political process. While recovering from a few failed relationships, King began blogging about these topics, which led him to the ESSENCE online audience. His candor was an immediate hit and spawned his first book, titled Giving Love a Chance: The Secrets to Men Women and Relationships. In 2012 King directed the documentary Mothers of No Tomorrow, with former NBA champion John Salley as an executive producer. The film sheds light on the journey black mothers are forced to take when their children are lost to intraracial violence.  
    read more »
    9:00 Essence.com Live
  • My EMF
    • GET LIFTED: BODY BY DENISE
    • GET LIFTED: BODY BY DENISE  Bio Free
    Every Sunday, ESSENCE.com uplifts and encourages our readers to reach their highest potential —…

    Every Sunday, ESSENCE.com uplifts and encourages our readers to reach their highest potential — mentally, spiritually, and physically. We bring that spirit to our Live Stage with the “Body by Denise” workouts, a great way to get each day of your EMF experience started right!

    read more »
    10:10 Essence.com Live
  • My EMF
    • DENISE WARREN
    • DENISE WARREN Bio Free
    In the past 25 years, Denise Warren has helped well over 150 members successfully lose 100 pounds…

    In the past 25 years, Denise Warren has helped well over 150 members successfully lose 100 pounds at her highly anticipated fitness class Body By Denise in New York. A winner of a 2010 Hoodie Award for Best Community Leader, Warren has made it her goal to erase obesity in her community by helping individuals one by one live a healthier lifestyle. In 1986, the Queens native became the proud owner and founder of Body By Denise Inc., now one of the largest group fitness and total body classes in New York State. Servicing well over 350 men and women per class, who come out for a high energy, intensified yet rewarding workout three to four times a week,   Body by Denise is a no-nonsense training workout that is designed to help you lose weight the right way and keep it off.

    read more »
    9:30 Essence.com Live
  • My EMF
    • REAL TALK WITH DEMETRIA L. LUCAS
    • REAL TALK WITH DEMETRIA L. LUCAS Bio Free
    In her biweekly column on ESSENCE.com, Demetria L. Lucas takes on the hot topics of the day, from…

    In her biweekly column on ESSENCE.com, Demetria L. Lucas takes on the hot topics of the day, from pop culture to relationships. Meet her on Sunday at the Live Stage for a lively conversation!

    read more »
    11:00 Essence.com Live
  • My EMF
    • Demetria L. Lucas
    • Demetria L. Lucas Bio Free
    Demetria L. Lucas is the author of A Belle in Brooklyn: The Go-to Girl for Advice on Living Your…
    Demetria L. Lucas is the author of A Belle in Brooklyn: The Go-to Girl for Advice on Living Your Best Single Life and the founder of Coached By Belle, a boutique life-coaching service, where Demetria helps clients solve their dating dilemmas and build healthy long-term relationships. Demetria is also a contributing editor for The Root, where she pens a weekly dating and relationship advice column, "Ask Demetria,” and is a contributing writer for the websites of Essence, Clutch, Vibe Vixen and Uptown.
    read more »
    11:00 Essence.com Live
  • My EMF
    • BEAUTY ALL-ACCESS
    • BEAUTY ALL-ACCESS Bio Free
    ESSENCE’s own experts — Beauty Director Corynne Corbett and Senior Beauty Editor Tasha Turner…

    ESSENCE’s own experts — Beauty Director Corynne Corbett and Senior Beauty Editor Tasha Turner — take you behind the scenes to share must-have products, pro tips and more in Beauty All-Access, an ESSENCE.com video series. They bring their expertise (plus special guests!) to our 2012 Live Stage.

    read more »
    11:30 Essence.com Live
  • My EMF
    • CORYNNE CORBETT
    • CORYNNE CORBETT Bio Free
    Corynne L. Corbett is beauty director for ESSENCE. In this role, Corbett is responsible for leading…
    Corynne L. Corbett is beauty director for ESSENCE. In this role, Corbett is responsible for leading the beauty team and executing the overall beauty vision for the magazine. She is a veteran journalist who uses her 20 years of experience in fashion, beauty and lifestyle to create engaging and compelling content across a variety of media platforms. Before joining ESSENCE, she served as executive editor and beauty and wellness director of Real Simple magazine. Additionally, she served in the role of editor-in-chief at both Mode and Heart & Soul magazines. Prior to this, she spent 8 years in the beauty department for Elle.
    read more »
    11:30 Essence.com Live
  • My EMF
    • Tasha Turner
    • Tasha Turner Bio Free
    Tasha Turner is a multitalented, dedicated industry-best at bringing the glamorous and scientific…
    Tasha Turner is a multitalented, dedicated industry-best at bringing the glamorous and scientific world of beauty to the lives of real women. As Senior Beauty Editor at ESSENCE magazine and an expert with more than a decade of experience, Tasha is known for discerning trends and creating compelling visuals while effectively reporting on beauty and self care. She has worked with some of the best hair and makeup artists, doctors, writers and photographers in the business. Tasha recently served as the Senior Beauty Editor at InStyle special issues, which included the seasonal Weddings, Hair, and Makeover issues.  As Senior Beauty Editor of ESSENCE magazine (where she rose from Accessories Editor), she became the architect of the annual Readers’ Choice Beauty Awards and special Hot Hair issues. Previously she served as Beauty Director at Honey magazine; Beauty & Accessories Editor at Vibe; and Editorial Beauty & Accessories Assistant at Town & Country.
    read more »
    11:30 Essence.com Live
  • My EMF
    • COFFEE TALK: SURPRISE CELEBRITY GUEST!
    • COFFEE TALK: SURPRISE CELEBRITY GUEST! Bio Free
    Ever wish you could just chat and chill with a star? ESSENCE.com’s video series Coffee Talk,…

    Ever wish you could just chat and chill with a star? ESSENCE.com’s video series Coffee Talk, hosted by Entertainment Editor Yolanda Sangweni, gives you that experience.  Now we bring it live and in person: Stop by to see what celebrity is waiting to meet you!

    read more »
    12:05 Essence.com Live
  • My EMF
    • THE STREET STYLE FASHION SHOW, BROUGHT TO YOU BY STATE FARM
    • THE STREET STYLE FASHION SHOW, BROUGHT TO YOU BY STATE FARM Bio Free
    Sure, celebrities have fabulous style — but we take most of our fashion inspiration from the real…

    Sure, celebrities have fabulous style — but we take most of our fashion inspiration from the real women we spot all around us. An extension of ESSENCE.com’s weekly Street Style photo gallery (Fridays), the Street Style Fashion Show puts the spotlight on some of the ESSENCE Music Festival’s fiercest ladies.

    read more »
    12:40 Essence.com Live
  • My EMF
    • EYE CANDY
    • EYE CANDY Bio Free
    Ladies, are you looking for some hot chocolate? ESSENCE.com has you covered every Monday, when we…

    Ladies, are you looking for some hot chocolate? ESSENCE.com has you covered every Monday, when we pay tribute to a few of our favorite sexy celebrity men. At the ESSENCE.com Live Stage, we invite some real EMF hotties to flex what they’re working with — come and cheer for your favorites!

    read more »
    1:15 Essence.com Live
  • Empowerment
Celebrate the power of our voice at the free ESSENCE Empowerment Experience all weekend at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center. Join us for unforgettable discussions on the power of family, community and the power of your spirit with the people, policy makers, performers, thinkers and leaders that matter most to your world. This experience is open to the public and no ticket is required. Doors open at 9 a.m. Pre-show from 9 to 11 a.m. Opening remarks begin at 11 a.m. 



  • Empowerment / Friday
  • My EMF
    • Dj Charles "Bambam" Belonge (Pre-Show)
    • Dj Charles "Bambam" Belonge (Pre-Show) Bio Free
    Sophistication meets Crunk! That best describes Dj Bambam Belonge, New Orleans native and veteran…
    Sophistication meets Crunk! That best describes Dj Bambam Belonge, New Orleans native and veteran of its radio and entertainment scene.   This energetic and sharply dressed Dj is one of the hottest and best mixers in the Crescent City, rocking crowds at many of the most prominent venues and events for years!   Bambam's career includes 14 years at the historic 98.5 WYLD where his smooth, distinctive voice and warm personality made him a New Orleans’ favorite.
    read more »
    9:00 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Shirley Strawberry
    • Shirley Strawberry Bio Free
    A native Chicagoan, Shirley Strawberry is one of the most recognizable names and voices in radio…
    A native Chicagoan, Shirley Strawberry is one of the most recognizable names and voices in radio today.  Dubbed "The Best Voice in Radio" by Steve Harvey, she is the co-host of one of today's biggest, nationally syndicated radio morning shows in the country with nearly eight million listeners and she's also the recipient of the 2012 NAACP Image award for best new author of the book titled The Strawberry Letter: Real Talk, Real Advice, Because Bitterness Isn't Sweet.
    read more »
    11:05 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Essence® Music Festival Welcome: Michelle Ebanks
    • Essence® Music Festival Welcome: Michelle Ebanks Bio Free
    Michelle Ebanks serves as President of Essence Communications Inc. and President of People en…
    Michelle Ebanks serves as President of Essence Communications Inc. and President of People en Español; responsible for advancing Time Inc.'s businesses within the nation's fastest growing population segments: African-Americans and Hispanics.  Ebanks leads the number one media and communications brand dedicated to African-American women overseeing the company's portfolio which includes ESSENCE® Magazine, the world's leading title for African-American women, with a readership of more than 8 million; ESSENCE.com, the award-winning, daily online destination for African-American women; and the ESSENCE Music Festival®, the nation's largest annual African-American cultural and entertainment event attracting more than 400,000 attendees to New Orleans during the July Fourth weekend.
    read more »
    12:45 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Constance C.R. White
    • Constance C.R. White Bio Free
    Constance C.R. White is Editor-in-Chief of ESSENCE — the premier fashion, beauty, and lifestyle…
    Constance C.R. White is Editor-in-Chief of ESSENCE — the premier fashion, beauty, and lifestyle publication for African-American women. An award-winning journalist and author of Stylenoir, a groundbreaking book on black style, White is renowned for her wealth of experience and contributions across print, broadcast and online. She served as Style Director, Brand Consultant and Spokesperson for eBay, the founding Fashion Editor for Talk magazine, a Style Reporter for The New York Times, the Executive Fashion Editor for Elle magazine, Associate Editor at Women's Wear Daily and W magazine and began her career at Ms. magazine, as assistant to co-founder Gloria Steinem. 
    read more »
    11:10 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • The Power of Our Sisters: Melissa Harris-Perry
    • The Power of Our Sisters: Melissa Harris-Perry Bio Free
    Melissa Harris-Perry is host of MSNBC's weekend show Melissa Harris-Perry. A professor of political…
    Melissa Harris-Perry is host of MSNBC's weekend show Melissa Harris-Perry. A professor of political science at Tulane University, where she is founding director of the Anna Julia Cooper Project on Gender, Race, and Politics in the South. She previously served on the faculties of the University of Chicago and Princeton University. She is author of the new book, Sister Citizen: Shame, Stereotypes, and Black Women in America and the award-winning Barbershops, Bibles, and BET: Everyday Talk and Black Political Thought.  Harris-Perry writes a monthly column for The Nation Magazine also titled Sister Citizen.
    read more »
    11:10 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • The Family Feud at Festival: Steve Harvey
    • The Family Feud at Festival: Steve Harvey Bio Free
    Steve Harvey began doing stand-up comedy in the mid-1980s. Harvey's multi-faceted career in TV,…
    Steve Harvey began doing stand-up comedy in the mid-1980s. Harvey's multi-faceted career in TV, movies, radio and books includes currently hosting Family Feud and the Steve Harvey Morning Show, and authoring two bestsellers, Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man and Straight Talk, No Chaser. The movie adaptation Think Like a Man hits theaters in March, and Harvey will also host a daytime talk show, launching in the fall. What are you looking forward to hearing Steve Harvey talk about? Tell us here.
    read more »
    11:30 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Families in the Name of Love
    • Free
    The Truth behind Reality TV.  This panel features your favorite reality TV sisters.  See our list…
    The Truth behind Reality TV.  This panel features your favorite reality TV sisters.  See our list of panelists below
    12:50 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Michelle Williams (moderator)
    • Michelle Williams (moderator) Bio Free
    Michelle Williams is a multi-award winning international singer, songwriter, and actress.  She is…
    Michelle Williams is a multi-award winning international singer, songwriter, and actress.  She is best known as a member of the record-breaking R&B/ Pop sensation, Destiny's Child.  As an actress she reigned on the Broadway stage with critically-praised performances in “Aida”, in the title role,” as Shug Avery in “The Color Purple” and as Roxie Hart in “Chicago.”  She is currently working on her fourth solo album, a new gospel offering and her first release for Light Records/eOne.
    read more »
    12:50 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Trina & Tamar Braxton
    • Trina & Tamar Braxton Bio Free
    Trina Braxton is a multi-talented actress and singer who has appeared in Tyler Perry's, Meet the…
    Trina Braxton is a multi-talented actress and singer who has appeared in Tyler Perry's, Meet the Browns.  As well as being an actress, Trina started singing with her sisters as a pre-teen where she discovered her passion for songwriting and modeling.  Trina resides Atlanta, GA with her husband Gabriel and two sons while she finds herself singing background for sister Toni, recording with her band Simply Irresistible and starring on WE tv's Braxton Family Values.

    The youngest and most outspoken of the Braxtons, Tamar started singing as a toddler and knew then that she would be a star.  While writing and singing on Toni's albums, Tamar began working closely with super producer and best friend to Toni, Vincent Herbert.  The two became very close and married. Tamar signed with her husband's record label and is currently working on her long-awaited album and starring on WE tv's Braxton Family Values.
    read more »
    12:50 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Mary Mary
    • Mary Mary Bio Free
    Ever since siblings Erica Campbell and Tina Campbell broke through in 2000 with the pioneering…
    Ever since siblings Erica Campbell and Tina Campbell broke through in 2000 with the pioneering crossover hit "Shackles (Praise You)," the chart-topping sister act has never wavered from defying convention to fulfill its mission: sending uplifting messages through music and words that are relatable to everyone. More than ten years later, Mary Mary has earned three GRAMMY Awards, two American Music Awards, an NAACP Image Award and a BET Award thanks to such hits as "Yesterday," "Heaven" and "God in Me." The "Mary Mary way" sounds just as fresh and innovative on the duo's sixth album, the aptly titled Something Big, featuring the lively lead single, "Walking." What's your favorite Mary Mary song? Tell us here.
    read more »
    12:50 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Cynthia Bailey
    • Cynthia Bailey Bio Free
    Cynthia is currently one of the stars of Bravo TV's hit reality show The Real Housewives of…
    Cynthia is currently one of the stars of Bravo TV's hit reality show The Real Housewives of Atlanta, and is married to restaurateur Peter Thomas. She is the CEO of The Bailey Agency School of Fashion, and he is the owner of Atlanta's newest hotspot Bar One. Cynthia's biggest accomplishment is her 12-year old daughter Noelle Forde Robinson. They reside in Atlanta, Georgia.
    read more »
    12:50 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Malorie Bailey-Massey
    • Malorie Bailey-Massey Bio Free
    Malorie Bailey-Massie, aka "Mal," is sister and assistant to the Real Housewives of Atlanta…
    Malorie Bailey-Massie, aka "Mal," is sister and assistant to the Real Housewives of Atlanta co-star Cynthia Bailey.  Mal is a basketball wife to Chris Massie, writer and entrepreneur.  She has a daughter with former NFL player Lamar Lathon.  Mal recently launched Mal’s Custom Bracelets, where she has experienced a great deal of rave about her custom bracelets and has three reality television shows registered with the Writers Guild.
    read more »
    12:50 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • A Candid Conversation:
    • Free
    Mother Daughter Love, Laughter and Surviving Drama. This panel features Vanessa L. Williams and her…
    Mother Daughter Love, Laughter and Surviving Drama. This panel features Vanessa L. Williams and her mother Helen. Moderated by Fredricka Whitfield. Read more on our panelists and moderator below.
    2:00 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Vanessa & Helen Williams
    • Vanessa & Helen Williams Bio Free
    Vanessa Williams is one of the most respected and multi-faceted entertainers in the world. She has…
    Vanessa Williams is one of the most respected and multi-faceted entertainers in the world. She has conquered the musical charts, Broadway, music videos, television and motion pictures.  Her memoir, co-written with her mother, Helen, entitled YOU HAVE NO IDEA: A Famous Daughter, Her No-Nonsense Mother, and How They Survived Pageants, Hollywood, Love, Loss (and Each Other), gives a mother-daughter take on Vanessa's personal and professional life journey.

    Helen Williams, a former adjunct professor at Manhattanville College School of Education and taught in the Ossining Public Schools as a vocal music educator for 37 years.  She's received many accolades over the years including the March of Dimes Mother of the Year 2001, a Rotary Paul Harris Fellow in 2006, the State University of New York's 2010 Jessie Hillman Award For Excellence and the National Council of Negro Women Uncommon Heights Award in 2011. Mrs. Williams is the mother of Vanessa and Chris and the grandmother of four.

    Photo courtesy of Mike Ruiz
    read more »
    2:00 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Fredricka Whitfield
    • Fredricka Whitfield Bio Free
    Fredricka Whitfield is a news anchor for CNN/U.S. Based in the network's world headquarters in…
    Fredricka Whitfield is a news anchor for CNN/U.S. Based in the network's world headquarters in Atlanta, Whitfield anchors the weekend edition of CNN Newsroom.  Since joining CNN in 2002, Whitfield has reported from the Persian Gulf region during the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, Beijing, China during the 2008 Summer Olympic Games and Washington, D.C. during the 2009 presidential inauguration.  Whitfield earned a bachelor's degree in journalism from Howard University.
    read more »
    2:00 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Finding Love at Any Age:
    • Free
    Black Relationships Re-defined.  See below for a list of all the outspoken women featured on…
    Black Relationships Re-defined.  See below for a list of all the outspoken women featured on this panel.
    2:45 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Charreah K. Jackson - Moderator
    • Charreah K. Jackson - Moderator Bio Free
    Charreah K. Jackson is the Relationships Editor at ESSENCE, where she creates engaging features on…
    Charreah K. Jackson is the Relationships Editor at ESSENCE, where she creates engaging features on sex and love while hunting down bachelors for the magazine's "Single Man of the Month" section. An award-winning journalist, her writing has appeared around the globe for brands including CNN, Ebony, Vibe and London’s Profyle magazine. Charreah is a featured relationships expert on YourTango, the Huffington Post and BET. As a certified family life educator, she also provides relationships workshops and coaching nationwide.
    read more »
    2:45 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Shirley Strawberry
    • Shirley Strawberry Bio Free
    A native Chicagoan, Shirley Strawberry is one of the most recognizable names and voices in radio…
    A native Chicagoan, Shirley Strawberry is one of the most recognizable names and voices in radio today.  Dubbed "The Best Voice in Radio" by Steve Harvey, she is the co-host of one of today's biggest, nationally syndicated radio morning shows in the country with nearly eight million listeners and she's also the recipient of the 2012 NAACP Image award for best new author of the book titled The Strawberry Letter: Real Talk, Real Advice, Because Bitterness Isn't Sweet.
    read more »
    2:45 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • LisaRaye McCoy
    • LisaRaye McCoy Bio Free
    Entertainer, businesswoman, philanthropist and former First Lady are all terms that describe…
    Entertainer, businesswoman, philanthropist and former First Lady are all terms that describe actress LisaRaye McCoy.  LisaRaye initially captured Hollywood's attention through her breakout performance as "Diamond" in Ice Cube's The Players Club. Her other acting credits include The Parent 'Hood, In the House, The It Factor and the CW Network's hit comedy series All of Us. This summer LisaRaye will reprise the role of "Keisha Greene" in VH1's hit series Single Ladies.
    read more »
    2:45 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Denise Vasi
    • Denise Vasi Bio Free
    Denise Vasi has never been one to go unnoticed. She got her breakout role as Randi Morgan on…
    Denise Vasi has never been one to go unnoticed. She got her breakout role as Randi Morgan on ABC’s daytime soap opera All My Children, Vasi's acting credits include Law and Order: Criminal Intent, feature films The Good Guy and What’s Your Number? starring Anna Faris. Vasi can be seen next in the second season of VH1's hit series Single Ladies in which she plays "Raquel," a savvy businesswoman coming into her own.
    read more »
    2:45 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Eva Marcille
    • Eva Marcille Bio Free
    Early in life, Eva Marcille's self-confidence and eye for fashion earned her the nickname "Eva the…
    Early in life, Eva Marcille's self-confidence and eye for fashion earned her the nickname "Eva the Diva." She grew up to win “America’s Next Top Model” in the show's highest-rated season, opening the door for her to become an international runway sensation. She has graced the covers of countless American and European magazines and appeared in numerous fashion campaigns, television shows, and films. Eva is currently featured on Oxygen’s upcoming docu-series, “Girlfriend Confidential: LA.”
    read more »
    2:45 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Keynote Address: Alice Randall
    • Keynote Address: Alice Randall Bio Free
    Alice Randall is the author of The Wind Done Gone, Pushkin and the Queen of Spades, Rebel Yell,…
    Alice Randall is the author of The Wind Done GonePushkin and the Queen of SpadesRebel Yell, and Ada's Rules. She is a Harvard educated African-American novelist who lives in Nashville and writes country songs. Randall has emerged as an innovative food activist committed to reforms that support healthy bodies and healthy communities.
    read more »
    2:45 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Beverly Johnson
    • Beverly Johnson  Bio Free
    Beverly Johnson is the first African-American supermodel. Her stunning features would land her on…
    Beverly Johnson is the first African-American supermodel. Her stunning features would land her on the cover of Vogue in 1974, making history as the first black model to grace the magazine's cover. Beverly's career is a showcase of accomplishment: from model to mom, actress, author, activist and businesswoman. Currently, she is the star of Beverly's Full House on OWN. In   2012 she introduced BeverlyJohnson.com, featuring haircare, skincare, bath and body products, and drawstring ponytails.   Photo Credit: Fadil Berisha
    read more »
    2:45 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Rooted in the Love of Fatherhood
    • Free
    This panel features Kobie Brown and more to be announced.  Find out more about our panelist below
    This panel features Kobie Brown and more to be announced.  Find out more about our panelist below
    4:05 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Soledad O'Brien
    • Soledad O'Brien Bio Free
    Soledad O'Brien is the anchor of the CNN morning show Starting Point with Soledad O'Brien and also…
    Soledad O'Brien is the anchor of the CNN morning show Starting Point with Soledad O'Brien and also a special correspondent for CNN/U.S. She has reported breaking news from around the globe in addition to producing award-winning documentary films, like Black in America and Unwelcome: The Muslims Next Door.  Her memoir The Next Big Story: My Journey through the Land of Possibilities, which chronicles her biggest reporting moments, was critically-acclaimed.  O'Brien lives with her husband and four children in Manhattan.
    read more »
    4:05 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Kobie Brown
    • Kobie Brown Bio Free
    Raised in East Orange, NJ, Kobie Brown is a Morehouse College graduate and a respected music…
    Raised in East Orange, NJ, Kobie Brown is a Morehouse College graduate and a respected music industry executive.  His passion for creativity, commitment to activism, and awareness of the pervasiveness and pain resulting from father absence inspired Brown to create From Fatherless To Fatherhood — a documentary that explores father absence in the Black community while showcasing men who, regardless of socioeconomic status, are fostering quality relationships with their children, families, and therefore, their communities.
    read more »
    4:05 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Ronald Mason Jr.
    • Ronald Mason Jr. Bio Free
    Ronald Mason Jr. is president of the Southern University System.   He previously was president of…
    Ronald Mason Jr. is president of the Southern University System.   He previously was president of Jackson State University.   Prior to JSU, Mason was at Tulane University where was senior vice president, general counsel, and vice president for finance and operations.   Mason holds membership on the White House Board of Advisors for HBCUs, Committee of 100 for Economic Development, Incorporated, and TMSF and NAFEO boards.   He received his B.A. and J.D. from Columbia University
    read more »
    4:05 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Jonathan Sprinkles
    • Jonathan Sprinkles Bio Free
    You are in for a real treat. “Your Connection Coach” Jonathan Sprinkles delivers straight talk,…
    You are in for a real treat. “Your Connection Coach” Jonathan Sprinkles delivers straight talk, ‘sprinkled’ with laughs. He is a television personality, creator of the award-winning site GetAndStayMotivated.com, author of 10 books, top-rated keynote speaker, and a leading authority on inspiring people to perform at a higher level. Jonathan’s tips for connecting with the people in your life have been featured in Essence.com, ABC, Fox News, Glamour, and a host of media outlets.
    read more »
    4:05 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Roland Martin
    • Roland Martin Bio Free
    Roland S. Martin is a nationally syndicated columnist with Creators Syndicate, the author of…
    Roland S. Martin is a nationally syndicated columnist with Creators Syndicate, the author of Listening to the Spirit Within: 50 Perspectives on Faith, and Speak, Brother! A Black Man’s View of America, and “The First: President Barack Obama’s Road to the White House as originally reported by Roland S. Martin.” Mr. Martin is a commentator for TV One Cable Network and host and managing editor of “Washington Watch with Roland Martin.” He is also an Analyst for CNN.
    read more »
    4:05 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • What Men Want
    • Free
    This panel features Terrence J, Devin Thomas, DB Woodside and Terrell Tillford with our host…
    This panel features Terrence J, Devin Thomas, DB Woodside and Terrell Tillford with our host Charreah Jackson.  Find out more about our panelist and moderator below.
    4:50 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Charreah K. Jackson - Moderator
    • Charreah K. Jackson - Moderator Bio Free
    Charreah K. Jackson is the Relationships Editor at ESSENCE, where she creates engaging features on…
    Charreah K. Jackson is the Relationships Editor at ESSENCE, where she creates engaging features on sex and love while hunting down bachelors for the magazine's "Single Man of the Month" section. An award-winning journalist, her writing has appeared around the globe for brands including CNN, Ebony, Vibe and London’s Profyle magazine. Charreah is a featured relationships expert on YourTango, the Huffington Post and BET. As a certified family life educator, she also provides relationships workshops and coaching nationwide.
    read more »
    4:50 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Terrence J
    • Terrence J Bio Free
    Terrence "J" Jenkins is an actor, philanthropist, and CEO of a full service…
    Terrence "J" Jenkins is an actor, philanthropist, and CEO of a full service entertainment-consulting firm, Jenkins Entertainment Group, and the host and producer of the longest-running music countdown show in history, 106 & Park. He is appearing in the upcoming films, the adaptation of Steve Harvey's book, Act Like A Lady, Think Like A Man, and Sparkle. He actively works with young people by encouraging them to remain socially and civically engaged.
    read more »
    4:50 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Devin Thomas
    • Devin Thomas Bio Free
    Born on November 15, 1986, in Ann Arbor, Michigan, Devin Thomas embarked on a remarkable college…
    Born on November 15, 1986, in Ann Arbor, Michigan, Devin Thomas embarked on a remarkable college career before his Washington Redskins draft in 2007. In 2010, he joined the NY Giants and in 2011, during the NFC Championship Game recovered two pivotal fumbles, one of which occurred in overtime to set up the winning score landing the Giants in Super Bowl XLVI. He is 25 years old and embraces the mantra "to whom much is given, much is expected."
    read more »
    4:50 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • DB Woodside
    • DB Woodside Bio Free
    DB will be reprising his role as “Malcolm Franks” when the second season of VH1’s scripted…
    DB will be reprising his role as “Malcolm Franks” when the second season of VH1’s scripted series, Single Ladies, which is executive produced by Queen Latifah returns May 28th at 9PM ET/PT. Consistently recognized for having played the character of ‘President Wayne Palmer’ on FOX’s critically-acclaimed Emmy Award-winning drama 24, DB was included in this year’s PEOPLE Magazine’s hugely-popular special “Sexiest Man Alive” issue.  Are you a DB fan?  Tell us Facebook and Twitter.
    read more »
    4:50 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Terrell Tillford
    • Terrell Tillford Bio Free
    Coming this summer fans can catch Terrell playing LisaRaye's (Keisha) love interest "Sean" on the…
    Coming this summer fans can catch Terrell playing LisaRaye's (Keisha) love interest "Sean" on the VH1's hit series "Single Ladies." Television audiences may recognize Terrell from his recurring roles on such shows as Showtime series “Soul Food," “24," "NCIS," “Bones," “CSI:NY," “Girlfriends” and “My Wife & Kids. ”A natural athlete with a passion for running the NY and L.A. marathons, Terrell is married to actress Victoria Platt, whom he met while working on “Guiding Light.”
    read more »
    4:50 Empowerment
  • Empowerment / Saturday
  • My EMF
    • Dj Charles "Bambam" Belonge (Pre-Show)
    • Dj Charles "Bambam" Belonge (Pre-Show) Bio Free
    Sophistication meets Crunk! That best describes Dj Bambam Belonge, New Orleans native and veteran…
    Sophistication meets Crunk! That best describes Dj Bambam Belonge, New Orleans native and veteran of its radio and entertainment scene.   This energetic and sharply dressed Dj is one of the hottest and best mixers in the Crescent City, rocking crowds at many of the most prominent venues and events for years!   Bambam's career includes 14 years at the historic 98.5 WYLD where his smooth, distinctive voice and warm personality made him a New Orleans’ favorite.
    read more »
    9:00 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • The Power of Our Community & Love
    • The Power of Our Community & Love Bio Free
    Join us on Saturday at the FREE ESSENCE® Empowerment Experience as we celebrate the power of our…
    Join us on Saturday at the FREE ESSENCE® Empowerment Experience as we celebrate the power of our community with the people, policy makers, performers, thinks and leaders that matter most to your world.
    read more »
    9:00 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Superlife Transformation Graduation
    • Superlife Transformation Graduation Bio Free
    Join Chaka Khan's The Chaka Khan Foundation in conjunction with the Institute of Women & Ethnic…
    Join Chaka Khan's The Chaka Khan Foundation in conjunction with the Institute of Women & Ethnic Studies, ESSENCE and event sponsor Verizon Wireless as we present the first graduates of the SuperLife Transformation Program, an in-depth life and community-altering transformation process for deserving women in the New Orleans area who wished to accomplish their lifelong goals. The ceremony will include the commencement address and special performance by Chaka Khan. Attendees are also invited to bring their no-longer-used wireless phones to donate to HopeLine from Verizon, a program that empowers domestic violence victims and survivors.
    read more »
    9:00 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Constance C.R. White
    • Constance C.R. White Bio Free
    Constance C.R. White is Editor-in-Chief of ESSENCE — the premier fashion, beauty, and lifestyle…
    Constance C.R. White is Editor-in-Chief of ESSENCE — the premier fashion, beauty, and lifestyle publication for African-American women. An award-winning journalist and author of Stylenoir, a groundbreaking book on black style, White is renowned for her wealth of experience and contributions across print, broadcast and online. She served as Style Director, Brand Consultant and Spokesperson for eBay, the founding Fashion Editor for Talk magazine, a Style Reporter for The New York Times, the Executive Fashion Editor for Elle magazine, Associate Editor at Women's Wear Daily and W magazine and began her career at Ms. magazine, as assistant to co-founder Gloria Steinem. 
    read more »
    9:00 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Keynote Message on the 2012 Election by Congresswoman Maxine Waters
    • Keynote Message on the 2012 Election by Congresswoman Maxine Waters Bio Free
    Congresswoman Maxine Waters is considered by many to be one of the most powerful women in American…
    Congresswoman Maxine Waters is considered by many to be one of the most powerful women in American politics today. She has gained a reputation as a fearless and outspoken advocate for women, children, people of color and the poor. Elected in November 2010 to her 11th term in the House of Representatives in the 35th District of California, Congresswoman Waters represents a large part of South Central Los Angeles and area communities. She serves on numerous subcommittees as well on the House Committee on the Judiciary. An integral member of the Congressional Democratic Leadership, Congresswoman Waters serves as a Chief Deputy Whip and as a member of the Steering & Policy Committee. Tell us here if you’re looking forward to hearing from Rep. Waters. here.
    read more »
    11:30 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • The African American Education Grade
    • The African American Education Grade Bio Free
    This panel is moderated by Ryan Smith and features policy makers and leaders in education that…
    This panel is moderated by Ryan Smith and features policy makers and leaders in education that matter most to your world. See more on them below.
    read more »
    11:45 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Soledad O'Brien
    • Soledad O'Brien Bio Free
    Soledad O'Brien is the anchor of the CNN morning show Starting Point with Soledad O'Brien and also…
    Soledad O'Brien is the anchor of the CNN morning show Starting Point with Soledad O'Brien and also a special correspondent for CNN/U.S. She has reported breaking news from around the globe in addition to producing award-winning documentary films, like Black in America and Unwelcome: The Muslims Next Door.  Her memoir The Next Big Story: My Journey through the Land of Possibilities, which chronicles her biggest reporting moments, was critically-acclaimed.  O'Brien lives with her husband and four children in Manhattan.
    read more »
    11:45 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Marianne Jean Baptiste
    • Marianne Jean Baptiste Bio Free
    Marianne's bio is forthcoming!
    Marianne's bio is forthcoming!
    read more »
    11:45 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Ryan Smith
    • Ryan Smith Bio Free
    Ryan Smith is host of HLN’s Evening Express. Evening Express provides an energetic, inspirational…
    Ryan Smith is host of HLN’s Evening Express. Evening Express provides an energetic, inspirational and solutions-oriented look at the day’s news, accompanied by deeper discussions and reporting on stories and issues that resonate in the American household, including parenting, education, health, personal finance and relationships. The son of a college professor and an art teacher, Ryan developed a great appreciation for education. He is a passionate advocate for causes that encourage child and adult literacy. Ryan is a graduate of Syracuse University and Columbia Law School.
    read more »
    11:45 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Dr. Thelma Baxter
    • Dr. Thelma Baxter Bio Free
    Dr. Thelma Baxter is a nationally recognized educational consultant on school reform and literacy.…
    Dr. Thelma Baxter is a nationally recognized educational consultant on school reform and literacy. She is the retired Harlem school superintendent and principal of Theodore Roosevelt High School in the Bronx, NY. When this failing school achieved three years of improved test scores, graduation rates and attendance, the New York Times acknowledged her with a 1996 editorial entitled, “Cloning Thelma Baxter”. Dr. Baxter has taught at the collegiate level preparing other education administrators.
    read more »
    11:45 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Major General Marcia Anderson
    • Major General Marcia Anderson Bio Free
    Major General Marcia Anderson,Deputy Chief, Army Reserve (IMA). MG Anderson represents the Chief,…
    Major General Marcia Anderson,Deputy Chief, Army Reserve (IMA). MG Anderson represents the Chief, Army Reserve and supervises planning and execution of Department of the Army and Army Reserve initiatives to support 205,000 Army Reserve Soldiers.   MG Anderson has a B.A. degree in Political Science from Creighton University and a law degree from Rutgers University School of Law.   MG Anderson is the first African American female to become a Major General in the Army.
    read more »
    11:45 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Vanessa Bush
    • Vanessa Bush Bio Free
    Vanessa Bush is currently the Executive Editor at Essence Magazine. She has held various writing…
    Vanessa Bush is currently the Executive Editor at Essence Magazine. She has held various writing and editorial posts at Life and Glamour magazines, co-authored a best-selling beauty and empowerment book with media icon Tyra Banks, Tyra’s Beauty Inside & Out, and is a past winner of a Merrill Journalism Fellowship in Child and Family Policy. Vanessa is a cum laude graduate of Harvard University and holds a master's from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism.
    read more »
    11:45 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Taking Back our Schools with Dr. Steve Perry
    • Taking Back our Schools with Dr. Steve Perry Bio Free
    Dr. Steve Perry, Principal of Capital Prep Magnet School in Hartford, Connecticut, praised by…
    Dr. Steve Perry, Principal of Capital Prep Magnet School in Hartford, Connecticut, praised by education experts across America. CNN education contributor, and his latest book Push Has Come to Shove transformative ideas on how to restore America’s schools. Author of the bestselling book Man Up!, a columnist at ESSENCE magazine, a frequent radio and television commentator, and sought-after speaker at colleges and education forums. What are you looking forward to hearing Dr. Perry talk about? Tell us here.
    read more »
    11:45 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Sabriya Stukes
    • Sabriya Stukes Bio Free
    Sabriya first fell in love with science when she was 15 years old and read Richard Peterson’s…
    Sabriya first fell in love with science when she was 15 years old and read Richard Peterson’s novel, The Hot Zone, which takes an in-depth look into the origins of the infectious Ebola virus .She received her undergraduate degree from Virginia Tech and has worked on HIV research at the National Institutes of Health and studied tuberculosis at NYU. She is currently pursuing her PhD and studies host-pathogen interactions at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine.
    read more »
    11:45 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • 2012 Election: Does the Black Church Still Matter?
    • Free
    Does the Black Church Still Matter? See below for a list of all the leaders featured on this…
    Does the Black Church Still Matter? See below for a list of all the leaders featured on this panel.
    12:30 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Reverend Dr. Floyd Flake
    • Reverend Dr. Floyd Flake Bio Free
    For the past 35 years, Dr. Flake has served as pastor of The Greater Allen AME Cathedral in New…
    For the past 35 years, Dr. Flake has served as pastor of The Greater Allen AME Cathedral in New York. His career path includes: marketing analysis at a major tobacco firm and Xerox Corp. He served at dean of students at Lincoln University in Pennsylvania and dean of students, acting dean of the Chapel and director of the MLK Center at Boston University.  He served in the U.S. Congress for eleven years.  He authored several books including the bestseller The Way of the Bootstrapper.
    read more »
    12:30 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Soledad O'Brien
    • Soledad O'Brien Bio Free
    Soledad O'Brien is the anchor of the CNN morning show Starting Point with Soledad O'Brien and also…
    Soledad O'Brien is the anchor of the CNN morning show Starting Point with Soledad O'Brien and also a special correspondent for CNN/U.S. She has reported breaking news from around the globe in addition to producing award-winning documentary films, like Black in America and Unwelcome: The Muslims Next Door.  Her memoir The Next Big Story: My Journey through the Land of Possibilities, which chronicles her biggest reporting moments, was critically-acclaimed.  O'Brien lives with her husband and four children in Manhattan.
    read more »
    12:30 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Pastor Debra B. Morton
    • Pastor Debra B. Morton Bio Free
    Dr. Debra B. Morton is the Senior Pastor of Greater St. Stephen Full Gospel Baptist Church, New…
    Dr. Debra B. Morton is the Senior Pastor of Greater St. Stephen Full Gospel Baptist Church, New Orleans, Louisiana.  She is married to Bishop Paul S. Morton Sr., Presiding Bishop of the Full Gospel Baptist Church Fellowship International where she serves as General Overseer of the women's division, Daughters of the Promise. Dr. Morton takes pride in being the mother of her three children — Jasmine, Paul Jr., and Christiann, and grandmother to 4.
    read more »
    12:30 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Reverend Jacqueline J. Lewis, Ph.D
    • Reverend Jacqueline J. Lewis, Ph.D Bio Free
    Rev. Jacqueline J. Lewis Ph.D. is Senior Minister of Middle Collegiate Church in New York City and…
    Rev. Jacqueline J. Lewis Ph.D. is Senior Minister of Middle Collegiate Church in New York City and Executive Director of The Middle Project, a leadership training institute for people of faith. Lewis produces an annual conference on how to strategically create diverse congregations.  She's been featured in The New York Times Video and CNN. She's author of The Power of Stories: A Guide for Leaders in Multi-Racial and Multi-Cultural Congregations and blogs for The Huffington Post.
    read more »
    12:30 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Dr. Rev. DeForest B. Soaries Jr.
    • Dr. Rev. DeForest B. Soaries Jr. Bio Free
    Dr. DeForest B. Soaries, Jr. is the Senior Pastor of First Baptist Church of Lincoln Gardens in NJ…
    Dr. DeForest B. Soaries, Jr. is the Senior Pastor of First Baptist Church of Lincoln Gardens in NJ and author of dfree®: Breaking Free from Financial Slavery. His dfree® strategy is designed to lead people out of debt to attain financial independence. His strategy was the focus of CNN’s “Almighty Debt” documentary. Recently, Soaries announced the Billion Dollar Challenge, a campaign challenging people to pay off $1 billion in debt. Participants can track their progress online at www.billiondollarpaydown.com.    
    read more »
    12:30 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Keynote Conversation with Steve Harvey
    • Keynote Conversation with Steve Harvey Bio Free
    Soledad O'Brien moderates what is sure to be an engaging conversation with Steve Harvey.
    Soledad O'Brien moderates what is sure to be an engaging conversation with Steve Harvey.
    read more »
    1:35 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • State of the Vote: Why Your Vote Counts
    2:40 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • State of the Vote with Rev. Al Sharpton
    • State of the Vote with Rev. Al Sharpton Bio Free
    Discover Why Your Vote Counts with Rev. Al Sharpton.Rev. Al Sharpton is one of the nation’s most…
    Discover Why Your Vote Counts with Rev. Al Sharpton.

    Rev. Al Sharpton is one of the nation’s most renowned civil rights leaders and the founder and President of the National Action Network (NAN). President Barack Obama has praised him as “the voice of the voiceless”. Tell us what you’re looking forward to hearing from Rev. Al here.
    read more »
    2:40 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Dr. Steve Perry
    • Dr. Steve Perry Bio Free
    Dr. Steve Perry, Principal of Capital Prep Magnet School in Hartford, Connecticut, praised by…
    Dr. Steve Perry, Principal of Capital Prep Magnet School in Hartford, Connecticut, praised by education experts across America. CNN education contributor, and his latest book Push Has Come to Shove transformative ideas on how to restore America’s schools. Author of the bestselling book Man Up!, a columnist at ESSENCE magazine, a frequent radio and television commentator, and sought-after speaker at colleges and education forums. What are you looking forward to hearing Dr. Perry talk about? Tell us here.
    read more »
    2:40 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Congresswoman Maxine Waters
    • Congresswoman Maxine Waters Bio Free
    Congresswoman Maxine Waters is considered by many to be one of the most powerful women in American…
    Congresswoman Maxine Waters is considered by many to be one of the most powerful women in American politics today. She has gained a reputation as a fearless and outspoken advocate for women, children, people of color and the poor. Elected in November 2010 to her 11th term in the House of Representatives in the 35th District of California, Congresswoman Waters represents a large part of South Central Los Angeles and area communities. She serves on numerous subcommittees as well on the House Committee on the Judiciary. An integral member of the Congressional Democratic Leadership, Congresswoman Waters serves as a Chief Deputy Whip and as a member of the Steering & Policy Committee. Tell us here if you’re looking forward to hearing from Rep. Waters. here.
    read more »
    2:40 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • 2012 Election: The Power of Our Community
    • Free
    What's at Stake For You? This panel is moderated by Soledad O'Brien and features policy makers,…
    What's at Stake For You? This panel is moderated by Soledad O'Brien and features policy makers, thinkers and leaders that matter most to your world. See more on them below.
    3:15 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Soledad O'Brien
    • Soledad O'Brien Bio Free
    Soledad O'Brien is the anchor of the CNN morning show Starting Point with Soledad O'Brien and also…
    Soledad O'Brien is the anchor of the CNN morning show Starting Point with Soledad O'Brien and also a special correspondent for CNN/U.S. She has reported breaking news from around the globe in addition to producing award-winning documentary films, like Black in America and Unwelcome: The Muslims Next Door.  Her memoir The Next Big Story: My Journey through the Land of Possibilities, which chronicles her biggest reporting moments, was critically-acclaimed.  O'Brien lives with her husband and four children in Manhattan.
    read more »
    3:15 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Marc H. Morial
    • Marc H. Morial Bio Free
    As President of the National Urban League since 2003, Marc H. Morial has been the primary catalyst…
    As President of the National Urban League since 2003, Marc H. Morial has been the primary catalyst for an era of change for the 101 year old civil rights organization. His skilled leadership has expanded the League's work around an Empowerment agenda, which is redefining civil rights in the 21st century. Morial is also a former two-term mayor of New Orleans who led the city's 1990's renaissance, and left office with a 70% approval rating.
    read more »
    3:15 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Karen Carter Peterson
    • Karen Carter Peterson Bio Free
    Karen Carter Peterson is a Louisiana State Senator from District 5 and the Democratic National…
    Karen Carter Peterson is a Louisiana State Senator from District 5 and the Democratic National Committee Woman from Louisiana. She is the winner of several prestigious awards, including the recipient of the JFK Foundation New Frontier Award and was a part of the inaugural class of the Aspen Institute's Rodel Fellows in Public Service program.  She and her husband Dana live in the Warehouse district of New Orleans.
    read more »
    3:15 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Michael Baisden
    • Michael Baisden Bio Free
    Michael Baisden, best-selling author, motivational speaker, television talk show host, filmmaker,…
    Michael Baisden, best-selling author, motivational speaker, television talk show host, filmmaker, social activist and community leader, is undeniably one of the most influential and engaging personalities in radio history, heard in over 78 cities with over eight million listeners. In June, his latest book, Maintenance Man II: Money Politics and Sex Everyone Had a Price, will finally be released. For more info go to www.BaisdenLive.com or follow him on Facebook or Twitter.
    read more »
    3:15 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Dr. Julianne Malveaux
    • Dr. Julianne Malveaux Bio Free
    The 15th President of Bennett College for Women. She is also an economist, author, and commentator.…
    The 15th President of Bennett College for Women. She is also an economist, author, and commentator. Currently, Malveaux is the Honorary Co-Chair of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Incorporated, and serves on the boards of the Economic Policy Institute, and The Recreation Wish List Committee of Washington, DC. Dr. Malveaux is the Founder and Thought Leader of Last Word Productions, Inc. which has published her newest work, Surviving and Thriving: 365 Facts in Black Economic History.

    read more »
    3:15 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Trista L. Hargrove
    • Trista L. Hargrove Bio Free
    Trista L. Hargrove is Associate Director, Media Advocacy for the American Cancer Society Cancer…
    Trista L. Hargrove is Associate Director, Media Advocacy for the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN), the American Cancer Society’s advocacy affiliate. She plans and executes communications strategies in support of ACS CAN’s legislative, policy, and grassroots work. She also collaborates on the development and execution of enterprise-wide initiatives and partnerships to reduce cancer disparities. Additionally, she has served as a spokesperson on smoke-free workplace, access to care and colon cancer policy issues.
    read more »
    3:15 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • The 2012 Black Women's Agenda
    • Free
    Discuss the High Cost of Living in America with our moderator Fredricka Whitfield and the outspoken…
    Discuss the High Cost of Living in America with our moderator Fredricka Whitfield and the outspoken women featured on this panel.  See our list of participants below.
    4:20 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Dr. C. Nicole Mason
    • Dr. C. Nicole Mason Bio Free
    C. Nicole Mason, PhD is an Ascend Fellow at the Aspen Institute and the former Executive Director…
    C. Nicole Mason, PhD is an Ascend Fellow at the Aspen Institute and the former Executive Director of the Women of Color Policy Network at New York University. She has been a featured  writer  and commentator  for  Essence Magazine, CNN, POLITICO, the Huffington Post, NPR’s Michel Martin’s Tell Me More show, the Wall Street Journal, and RealClear Politics, among other media  outlets. Dr. Mason, a recognized leadership voice of the next generation of  African American scholars and advocates for women,  is currently finishing her first book.
    read more »
    4:20 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Fredricka Whitfield
    • Fredricka Whitfield Bio
    Fredricka Whitfield is a news anchor for CNN/U.S. Based in the network's world headquarters in…
    Fredricka Whitfield is a news anchor for CNN/U.S. Based in the network's world headquarters in Atlanta, Whitfield anchors the weekend edition of CNN Newsroom.  Since joining CNN in 2002, Whitfield has reported from the Persian Gulf region during the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, Beijing, China during the 2008 Summer Olympic Games and Washington, D.C. during the 2009 presidential inauguration.  Whitfield earned a bachelor's degree in journalism from Howard University.
    read more »
    4:20 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Constance C.R. White
    • Constance C.R. White Bio Free
    Constance C.R. White is Editor-in-Chief of ESSENCE — the premier fashion, beauty, and lifestyle…
    Constance C.R. White is Editor-in-Chief of ESSENCE — the premier fashion, beauty, and lifestyle publication for African-American women. An award-winning journalist and author of Stylenoir, a groundbreaking book on black style, White is renowned for her wealth of experience and contributions across print, broadcast and online. She served as Style Director, Brand Consultant and Spokesperson for eBay, the founding Fashion Editor for Talk magazine, a Style Reporter for The New York Times, the Executive Fashion Editor for Elle magazine, Associate Editor at Women's Wear Daily and W magazine and began her career at Ms. magazine, as assistant to co-founder Gloria Steinem. 
    read more »
    4:20 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Monique Greenwood
    • Monique Greenwood Bio Free
    Monique Greenwood, owner and CEO of Akwaaba Bed & Breakfast Inns, a collection of upscale…
    Monique Greenwood, owner and CEO of Akwaaba Bed & Breakfast Inns, a collection of upscale B&Bs in Brooklyn, NY, Washington, DC, Cape May, NJ, and now a boutique resort and spa in Pennsylvania's mountains, is passionate about economically empowering our communities. She developed a retail strip in Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn, renting out spaces at below market rates to area entrepreneurs, and she pens the monthly Small Biz Success column for Essence Magazine, where she served as editor-in-chief in 2001, succeeding Susan Taylor.
    read more »
    4:20 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Dr. Julianne Malveaux
    • Dr. Julianne Malveaux Bio Free
    The 15th President of Bennett College for Women. She is also an economist, author, and commentator.…
    The 15th President of Bennett College for Women. She is also an economist, author, and commentator. Currently, Malveaux is the Honorary Co-Chair of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Incorporated, and serves on the boards of the Economic Policy Institute, and The Recreation Wish List Committee of Washington, DC. Dr. Malveaux is the Founder and Thought Leader of Last Word Productions, Inc. which has published her newest work, Surviving and Thriving: 365 Facts in Black Economic History.

    read more »
    4:20 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Issa Rae
    • Issa Rae Bio Free
    Issa Rae is the mastermind (creator, director, star) of the successful web-series The…
    Issa Rae is the mastermind (creator, director, star) of the successful web-series The Mis-Adventures of Awkward Black Girl. Winning the coveted 2012 Shorty Award for "Best Web Show" proved Awkward Black Girl viewers come from multiple races, ages and socio-economical groups. Issa proudly depicts the different experiences of twenty-something Black Americans through relatable, comedic stories. As the show’s creative genius, Issa has garnered features on popular outlets such as NBC, Vibe Magazine, CNN, and more.
    read more »
    4:20 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Judy Jackson
    • Judy Jackson Bio Free
    As Chief Talent Officer for Digitas, Judy leads all human resources efforts for talent. Under her…
    As Chief Talent Officer for Digitas, Judy leads all human resources efforts for talent. Under her leadership, the agency has received over 20 Best Places to Work accolades in two years. Prior to returning to Digitas, Judy held human resource leadership positions at Essence Communications, Wunderman Worldwide, BBDO Advertising, Planned Parenthood, and ABC-TV. Judy has contributed to a number of books on human resources management and is the former President of BRAINY, an organization of African Americans in the communications industry.
    read more »
    4:20 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Dr. Freda Lewis-Hall
    • Dr. Freda Lewis-Hall Bio Free
    Dr. Freda Lewis-Hall, Executive Vice President and Chief Medical Officer of Pfizer, is among the…
    Dr. Freda Lewis-Hall, Executive Vice President and Chief Medical Officer of Pfizer, is among the nation’s top business and healthcare leaders and directs Pfizer’s efforts to ensure better health outcomes for patients. Trained as a psychiatrist, she has held leadership roles in academia, medical research, front-line patient care, and the global biopharmaceutical industry. She’s well known as a patient advocate and appears regularly on the Emmy-winning daytime syndicated show, The Doctors.
    read more »
    4:20 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Iyanla Vanzant
    • Iyanla Vanzant Bio Free
    Iyanla Vanzant is an accomplished author, inspirational speaker, talk show host and living…
    Iyanla Vanzant is an accomplished author, inspirational speaker, talk show host and living testament to the power of acting on faith. Iyanla has had a unique life filled with many personal struggles that she has overcome and used to become stronger. Now, she's back, fixing lives and using her past to help others. In her new series, Iyanla, Fix My Life, secrets will be revealed, truths will be uncovered and emotions will come out as Iyanla teaches us how to pull back the curtain on what is broken in our lives. Read more: http://www.oprah.com/own-iyanla-fix-my-life/About-Iyanla-Fix-My-Life#ixzz1xibWJY00
    read more »
    4:20 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Lt. Governor Jay Dardenne
    • Lt. Governor Jay Dardenne Bio Free
    Jay Dardenne was re-elected to a four-year term as Louisiana’s Lieutenant Governor in October…
    Jay Dardenne was re-elected to a four-year term as Louisiana’s Lieutenant Governor in October 2011.  He also served four years as Secretary of State and 15 years as a State Senator.      During his legislative service, he chaired the Senate Finance Committee and was named National Republican Legislator of the Year.   He is an active community volunteer, having hosted the Jerry Lewis Telethon for the Muscular Dystrophy Association for more than 30 years.   He is an attorney and a graduate of Baton Rouge High School, LSU and the LSU Law Center.
    read more »
    4:20 Empowerment
  • Empowerment / Sunday
  • My EMF
    • Dj Charles "Bambam" Belonge (Pre-Show)
    • Dj Charles "Bambam" Belonge (Pre-Show) Bio Free
    Sophistication meets Crunk! That best describes Dj Bambam Belonge, New Orleans native and veteran…
    Sophistication meets Crunk! That best describes Dj Bambam Belonge, New Orleans native and veteran of its radio and entertainment scene.   This energetic and sharply dressed Dj is one of the hottest and best mixers in the Crescent City, rocking crowds at many of the most prominent venues and events for years!   Bambam's career includes 14 years at the historic 98.5 WYLD where his smooth, distinctive voice and warm personality made him a New Orleans’ favorite.
    read more »
    9:00 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Simply Beverages
    • Get Tickets
    Simply Beverages is a proud sponsor of Sunday's ESSENCE® Empowerment Experience: The Power of Your…
    Simply Beverages is a proud sponsor of Sunday's ESSENCE® Empowerment Experience: The Power of Your Spirit. Find out more about today's schedule, performers and honorees below.
    11:00 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Bishop Lester Love
    • Bishop Lester Love Bio Free
    Lester Love serves as the Senior Pastor of The City of Love, a New Orleans church that he is…
    Lester Love serves as the Senior Pastor of The City of Love, a New Orleans church that he is blessed to serve and lead. He also serves as Bishop of Protocol for the Full Gospel Baptist Church Fellowship International where presiding Bishop Paul S. Morton, Sr. is his Spiritual Father. Love's many talents also include singing. He has garnered national attention for his "Love Songs" YouTube clip, which has surpassed 1.5 million views.
    read more »
    11:00 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Live Performance by Maurette Brown Clark
    • Live Performance by Maurette Brown Clark Bio Free
    Maurette Brown Clark, often called "The Princess of Praise & Worship" is a two-time Stellar…
    Maurette Brown Clark, often called "The Princess of Praise & Worship" is a two-time Stellar Award winner. With an impressive twenty years in gospel music, Brown Clark has amassed hits including "Breaking of Day," "Just Wanna Praise You," "Even In the Rain," "One God" and "It Ain't Over (Until God Says It’s Over)." The Sound Of Victory marks Maurette Brown Clark's fourth solo album. It features the praise anthem "I Hear The Sound (of Victory)."
    read more »
    11:15 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • MYESHA CHANEY
    • MYESHA CHANEY Bio Free
    Kingdomanity/Relevé Entertainment recording artist Myesha Chaney recently released her debut…
    Kingdomanity/Relevé Entertainment recording artist Myesha Chaney recently released her debut album, Take Him to The World. She is a wife, mother and the first lady of Antioch Church of Long Beach, California where her husband, Wayne Chaney, is Senior Pastor. She and her husband co-host a weekly radio show, “Real Life with Pastor Wayne and Myesha Chaney,” on Los Angeles’ KJLH.  Her popular blog series “Behind The Lipstick,” can be viewed on ESSENCE.com.
    read more »
    11:25 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Live Performance by Pastor Charles Jenkins
    • Live Performance by Pastor Charles Jenkins Bio Free
    Pastor Charles Jenkins is a dynamic, inspirational and visionary religious leader who is respected…
    Pastor Charles Jenkins is a dynamic, inspirational and visionary religious leader who is respected for his innovative and holistic approach to church growth and business development. He is widely known as the senior pastor of the legendary Fellowship Missionary Baptist Church in Chicago, Illinois. Jenkins is a GRAMMY® Award-winning songwriter and a recording artist. His new CD project, Charles Jenkins Presents Fellowship Chicago Live: The Best of Both Worlds will be in stores on June 12.
    read more »
    11:35 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Live Performance by Tyronne Foster and the Arc Singers
    • Live Performance by Tyronne Foster and the Arc Singers Bio Free
    Tyronne Foster and the Arc Singers is a community choir from New Orleans, Louisiana that loves…
    Tyronne Foster and the Arc Singers is a community choir from New Orleans, Louisiana that loves singing and praising God.  This choir has been in existence for 25 years and truly believes that God is not through blessing them.  They have traveled across the United States and Internationally.  Their motto is, "Give God your Best and he'll do the rest."
    read more »
    11:55 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Opening Remarks by Constance C.R. White
    • Opening Remarks by Constance C.R. White Bio Free
    Constance C.R. White is Editor-in-Chief of ESSENCE — the premier fashion, beauty, and lifestyle…
    Constance C.R. White is Editor-in-Chief of ESSENCE — the premier fashion, beauty, and lifestyle publication for African-American women. An award-winning journalist and author of Stylenoir, a groundbreaking book on black style, White is renowned for her wealth of experience and contributions across print, broadcast and online. She served as Style Director, Brand Consultant and Spokesperson for eBay, the founding Fashion Editor for Talk magazine, a Style Reporter for The New York Times, the Executive Fashion Editor for Elle magazine, Associate Editor at Women's Wear Daily and W magazine and began her career at Ms. magazine, as assistant to co-founder Gloria Steinem. 
    read more »
    12:25 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Host Remarks by Cheryl Wills
    • Host Remarks by Cheryl Wills Bio Free
    Cheryl Wills is a nationally recognized award-winning television personality for Time Warner…
    Cheryl Wills is a nationally recognized award-winning television personality for Time Warner Cable’s flagship cable news network, New York 1 News – which is on cable systems throughout the United States.   She is also the author of the acclaimed book, “Die Free: A Heroic Family Tale,” which traces her family’s amazing transition from slavery to freedom.  On March 25, 2011, she made history as the first journalist to speak in the General Assembly of the United Nations about the impact of slavery on her family. Cheryl Wills has also played herself in a number of major motion pictures including "Freedomland" starring Samuel Jackson and "The Brave One" with Jodie Foster and Terrence Howard.   She also plays herself in an episode of “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit.”
    read more »
    12:35 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Honorees: Mary Mary
    • Honorees:  Mary Mary Bio Free
    Ever since siblings Erica Campbell and Tina Campbell broke through in 2000 with the pioneering…
    Ever since siblings Erica Campbell and Tina Campbell broke through in 2000 with the pioneering crossover hit "Shackles (Praise You)," the chart-topping sister act has never wavered from defying convention to fulfill its mission: sending uplifting messages through music and words that are relatable to everyone. More than ten years later, Mary Mary has earned three GRAMMY Awards, two American Music Awards, an NAACP Image Award and a BET Award thanks to such hits as "Yesterday," "Heaven" and "God in Me." The "Mary Mary way" sounds just as fresh and innovative on the duo's sixth album, the aptly titled Something Big, featuring the lively lead single, "Walking." What's your favorite Mary Mary song? Tell us here.
    read more »
    1:00 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Amber Bullock
    • Amber Bullock Bio Free
    Music World Gospel recording artist Amber Bullock captured the hearts of millions on the #1 rated…
    Music World Gospel recording artist Amber Bullock captured the hearts of millions on the #1 rated weekly gospel music competition show, Sunday Best. Thank You, the debut project of the St. Louis native and single mother of 3-year old Amya, entered at #1 on Billboard’s Top Gospel Albums chart. Bullock’s signature jazz infused and neo-soul inspired style is featured on her new CD, So In Love, available in stores and online everywhere on July 10, 2012.
    read more »
    1:10 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Live Performance by Kim Burrell
    • Live Performance by Kim Burrell  Bio Free
    Kim Burrell is an American Gospel singer, songwriter, producer, and Pastor.  She hails from…
    Kim Burrell is an American Gospel singer, songwriter, producer, and Pastor.  She hails from Houston, Texas and founded the Love And Liberty Fellowship Church where she serves as Pastor. Burrell has quickly become one of the most influential voices of her time.  Kim Burrell is a three-time Stellar Award winner and three-time Grammy® Award nominee. Ultimately, Kim's prayer is that that souls will be saved throughout the world.
    read more »
    1:20 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Live Performance by Tramaine Hawkins
    • Live Performance by Tramaine Hawkins Bio Free
    Gospel Music Hall of Fame inductee Lady Tramaine Hawkins is an iconic figure.  She was part of the…
    Gospel Music Hall of Fame inductee Lady Tramaine Hawkins is an iconic figure.  She was part of the 1960s gospel music revolution and was featured on "Oh Happy Day," the first million-selling gospel single that topped the pop charts and became a worldwide hit proving that gospel music has no boundaries.  Tramaine has traveled the world spreading the good news and is a multiple Grammy® and Stellar Award winner who remains force in gospel music, ministry and the industry.
    read more »
    1:50 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Sermon by Pastor Marvin Winans
    • Sermon by Pastor Marvin Winans Bio Free
    Marvin Winans' musical career began in 1970 when he and his three brothers formed the singing group…
    Marvin Winans' musical career began in 1970 when he and his three brothers formed the singing group The Winans. Their musical career spanned over 25 years including five Grammy® awards and worldwide performances. Marvin and his brothers revolutionized the way the world views gospel music. Pastor Winans founded Perfecting Church in 1989. Beginning with eight members in the basement of his home, perfecting has grown into a flourishing ministry with a current membership of over 4,500.
    read more »
    2:35 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Live Performance by Byron Cage
    • Live Performance by Byron Cage  Bio Free
    Byron Cage was destined to be a force in gospel music.  The son of ministers, he was born in Grand…
    Byron Cage was destined to be a force in gospel music.  The son of ministers, he was born in Grand Rapids, Michigan, and raised in nearby Detroit. He performed his first church solo at the young age of four and became the choir director at Greater Grace Temple as a teenager.  Cage is currently the Minister of Music at Ebenezer A.M.E Church in Maryland. His fifth CD, Memoirs of a Worshipper, will be released on July 10.
    read more »
    3:05 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Honoree: Fred Hammond
    • Honoree:  Fred Hammond Bio Free
    Fred Hammond made his foray into the music business as the bass player for the Grammy Award winning…
    Fred Hammond made his foray into the music business as the bass player for the Grammy Award winning gospel group, The Winans, in 1980. Two years later he formed Commissioned and in 1994 Hammond went solo and introduced urban-flavored praise and worship music. He is one of gospel's top-charting artists and earned half dozen gold, platinum records for hits such as "We're Blessed" and "No Weapon.” His current CD is God, Love & Romance. What's your favorite Fred Hammond song? Tell us here.
    read more »
    3:55 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Live Performance by Israel Houghton
    • Live Performance by Israel Houghton Bio Free
    As a singer, composer, multi-instrumentalist, producer and worship leader, Israel Houghton has…
    As a singer, composer, multi-instrumentalist, producer and worship leader, Israel Houghton has created a canon of songs that have become standards in churches around the globe. Houghton has amassed a legion of followers that crosses generational lines with popularity among African-American, Latin and Caucasian listeners. While blasting down barriers, he has been fittingly graced with two gold-selling albums, four consecutive GRAMMY® Awards, seven Dove Awards, three Stellar Awards and a Soul Train Award.
    read more »
    3:55 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Live Performance by Yolanda Adams
    • Live Performance by Yolanda Adams Bio Free
    The 2012 Festival is excited to have gospel great Yolanda Adams join us as we celebrate the Power…
    The 2012 Festival is excited to have gospel great Yolanda Adams join us as we celebrate the Power of our Faith at the FREE ESSENCE Empowerment Experience. Stay tuned for more information on how she’ll be a part of this spirited day. Tell us your best Yolanda Adams song on Facebook and Twitter.
    read more »
    4:25 Empowerment
  • My EMF
    • Tribute Finale
    • Free
    Close out this powerful day with our tribute finale featuring all our honorees and performers  
    Close out this powerful day with our tribute finale featuring all our honorees and performers  
    4:45 Empowerment
  • New & Next
The Festival officially expands to four days, kicking off the weekend with our first youth empowerment concert on the ESSENCE New & Next stage on Thursday, July 5 in the Superdome. The New & Next Stage will feature live performances by the hottest new artists, including Diggy Simmons, the OMG Girlz and more to be announced. Doors open at 6 p.m. and performances start at 7 p.m. Over five thousand free tickets will be distributed to local youth and their families, and a limited quantity are available with the purchase of ESSENCE Youth Experience merchandise. Get more information on how to get tickets here.
  • New & Next / Thursday
  • My EMF
    • Verizon Wireless New & Next
    The ESSENCE® New & Next Concert is excited to have Verizon Wireless join us as a sponsor. …
    The ESSENCE® New & Next Concert is excited to have Verizon Wireless join us as a sponsor.  Check out our exciting lineup below.
    5:45 New & Next
  • My EMF
    • Walmart New & Next
    The ESSENCE® New & Next Concert is excited to have Walmart join us as a sponsor. See who's…
    The ESSENCE® New & Next Concert is excited to have Walmart join us as a sponsor. See who's performing below.
    5:50 New & Next
  • My EMF
    • Capital One Bank New & Next
    The ESSENCE New & Next Concert is excited to have Capital One Bank join us as a community…
    The ESSENCE New & Next Concert is excited to have Capital One Bank join us as a community partner. See our list of performers below.
    5:55 New & Next
  • My EMF
    • Mike Swift - HOST
    • Mike Swift - HOST Bio Get Tickets
    Mike Swift knows how to rock a party; any party! From house music and neo-soul, to the latest in…
    Mike Swift knows how to rock a party; any party! From house music and neo-soul, to the latest in hip-hop and R&B, DJ Mike Swift gets it poppin' at the hottest spots in New Orleans weekly. You can catch Ya Man Mike Swift "in your box" for the afternoon drive home, weekdays from 2p - 7p with daily mixes at 5p, then on Saturdays for The Hangover from 10a - 2p.
    read more »
    6:45 New & Next
  • My EMF
    • Diggy Simmons
    • Diggy Simmons Bio Get Tickets
    Daniel "Diggy" Simmons is the son of Hip-Hop royalty Joseph "Reverend Run" Simmons and nephew of…
    Daniel "Diggy" Simmons is the son of Hip-Hop royalty Joseph "Reverend Run" Simmons and nephew of Russell Simmons.  The young superstar's story began seven years ago co-starring on his family’s hit reality TV show.  Once Diggy uploaded a jaw-dropping freestyle and accompanying video, his family tree quickly became a mere backdrop. His three stellar mixtapes and the Internet world anointed him next.  Having inked a deal with Atlantic Records, the Queens, NY, native has since headlined his very own tour and co-headlined two previous runs.  His debut album Unexpected Arrival is an amazing showcase of what new generation superstar power sounds like featuring cuts like "Hello World," "Glow In The Dark" and "Unforgivable Blackness." Diggy has begun his ascendance on Billboard charts with singles "Copy, Paste," the Jeremih-featured "Do It Like You," whose video boasts over 3 million YouTube views, and the most recent love letter to his female base "4-Letter Word."  Are you looking forward to seeing Diggy perform?  Tell us on Facebook and Twitter.
    read more »
    9:30 New & Next
  • My EMF
    • OMG Girlz
    • OMG Girlz Bio Get Tickets
    OMG GIRLZ are bringing the fun back to music.  The new teenage girl group, made up of the…
    OMG GIRLZ are bringing the fun back to music.  The new teenage girl group, made up of the talented, totally gorgeous, and dedicated high school students, "Miss STAR" (Zonnique Pullins – 16 years old), "Miss BEAUTY" (Bahja Rodriguez – 15 years old) and "Miss BABY DOLL" (Breaunna Womack – 17 years old) are spreading their message of female empowerment everywhere they go.  Their mission – to let girlz everywhere know they can stand together as friends in positivity, true sisterhood and solidarity.  Grammy Award-winning singer / wongwriter, Tameka "Tiny" Harris, formed the OMG GIRLZ in 2009.  Two years later, they were selected to be the "Next SCREAM Star" and perform on the back to school SCREAM Tour – The Next Generation.   The OMG GIRLZ' first official video, "GUCCI THIS (GUCCI THAT)," took off and became an instant hit. Their viral video for the song, "Pretty Girl Bag," a remix of "Pretty Boy Swag," raked in over two million views within ten months of its debut on YouTube.  The OMG GIRLZ are currently working on their debut album.  Stay tuned for an upbeat mix of hip-hop, R&B, rap and pop — all packed with girl power messages aimed at teens just like them.  Are you excited to see the OMG Girlz at our New & Next Concert?  Tell us on Facebook and Twitter.
    read more »
    8:45 New & Next
  • My EMF
    • Roshon Fegan
    • Get Tickets
    The 2012 Festival is excited to have Roshon Fegan join us on at first ESSENCE® New & Next…
    The 2012 Festival is excited to have Roshon Fegan join us on at first ESSENCE® New & Next Concert as we celebrate the youth of New Orleans.  Look out for more information on this rising star soon.
    8:20 New & Next
  • My EMF
    • Katlyn Nichol
    • Katlyn Nichol Bio Get Tickets
    Katlyn Nichol is a 14 year old signed to Def Jam / Matriarch Records. "Katlyn began singing at age…
    Katlyn Nichol is a 14 year old signed to Def Jam / Matriarch Records. "Katlyn began singing at age two. She just had a natural gift," says Derrick Nichol, the starlet's father and a talented drummer in his own right. A Fayetteville, North Carolina native, she was brought to the attention of her idol Mary J. Blige in 2011. After she found herself face to face with her...the rest, shall we say, is "history." Since then, Katlyn has been performing with her mentor and working on her own debut album.  This summer she goes on tour with Diggy Simmons and the OMG Girlz amongst others.
    read more »
    6:55 New & Next
  • My EMF
    • Coco Jones
    • Coco Jones Bio Get Tickets
    Coco Jones starred in the Disney Channel original movie Let It Shine as "Roxie," a teenage singing…
    Coco Jones starred in the Disney Channel original movie Let It Shine as "Roxie," a teenage singing sensation.  Coco can also be seen guest-starring on Disney Channel's So Random and Good Luck Charlie.  Recently, Coco has been in the recording studio with Toby Gad, David Banner, and Rock Mafia. Coco will also be touring with Radio Disney's Next Big Thing this summer. Raised in Lebanon, Tennessee by former NFL player Mike Jones and talented session vocalist Javonda Jones, when Coco's not singing, acting, rapping or keeping up her honor roll status at school, Coco loves to sew, work out, swim, bike ride, surf the web and shop with her friends. 
    read more »
    7:40 New & Next
  • My EMF
    • The Roots of Music
    • The Roots of Music Bio Get Tickets
    read more »
    6:15 New & Next
  • My EMF
    • Square Off
    • Square Off Bio Get Tickets
    Being the sons of the world's greatest and originator of the human beatbox Doug E. Fresh, Square…
    Being the sons of the world's greatest and originator of the human beatbox Doug E. Fresh, Square Off have a lot to live up to and undoubtedly expectations run high. MCs Slim, (Dayquan Davis) and Trips, (Solomon Davis) have a unique perspective and appreciation for the music they love.  Square Off means them again the world — ready to face on any obstacle that's in their way.  Square Off's recent release Money, Moet & Memories features the singles "Standing Alone" and "Ready to Roll."  They have created their own movement by starting their own record label (Square Off Records) by signing other artist, producers and directors. Beyond the music they plan on creating a clothing line and eventually establishing a non-profit school of music where future MCs can learn how to navigate the music industry and hone their craft. But for now, the focus is on perfecting their own.
    read more »
    7:20 New & Next