If You're Attending the ESSENCE Festival for the First Time...
"Be prepared to eat the best food you’ve ever had in your life, like charbroiled oysters. The Festival is a family thing, where people have been going for years."
2 of 4Michael Rowe
On Performing at the Festival on July 7...
"I like seeing people being just as excited as I am. They are looking forward to hearing the songs that they know. I’m also learning new songs with the band, so I’m going to be free and relate to people."
3 of 4
On Her New Album, "Friends & Lovers"...
"The new album is a sequel derived from my first album, Late Nights & Early Mornings. I am reflecting on the relationships that worked out, the ones that didn’t, and the ones I am desperately, heart-wrenchingly trying to make work. As a woman with a voice in this industry, people count on you to say things that move them. I wanted to make an album that does just that. It speaks to parts that we shy away from. The first single will be available very, very soon. It’s a duet with Ne-Yo that’s going to blow your mind."
4 of 4Mike Coppola/Getty Images
On Admiring Michael Jackson, Stevie Wonder and Prince...
"I consider Michael Jackson, Stevie Wonder and Prince my holy trinity for music. Those three for me are absolutely breathtaking, awe-inspiring legends who have created music that’s changed things—not just minds and hearts, but life. The emotions (behind their music), whether lyrically or melodically, have the same synergy to me."
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