Essence is one of those festivals where the lineup seems to grow almost on a daily basis. In addition to the acts mentioned above, Arrested Development, Mint Condition, Mary Mary, Big Sam’s Funky Nation and Ivan Neville’s Dumpstaphunk are also among the new additions.
Artists previously announced include headliner Mary J. Blige, Earth, Wind & Fire, Gladys Knight, Keri Hilson, Jill Scott and Raphael Saadiq.
This year’s festival not only celebrates Essence’s 40-year involvement with music, but also spotlights the local music scene found in New Orleans. In its 16-year history, Essence has become the largest annual event featuring African-American music. It even broke its own attendance record last year when 428,000 attended the festival’s 15th anniversary.
At this time Essence is offering three ticket packages. Weekend tickets for all three nights start at $159 with front floor tickets starting at $540. Gold Plus weekend tickets, which include a commemorative T-shirt and a one-year subscription to Essence Magazine, are priced at $1,050. Platinum VIP Weekend prices start at $2,250 and include access to the Platinum VIP alongside the stage, VIP parking passes and center stage seating in the Superdome’s first 10 rows. For more information, click here for the Essence Music Festival Web site.