Essence Announces Lineup Additions

The Essence Music Festival made some noise in early December when organizers announced Prince will headline the 2014 edition of the annual event in New Orleans.  Now you can add Lionel Richie, Mary J. Blige and Erykah Badu to the lineup.

Photo: Jack Plunkett / Invision / AP
Austin City Limits Music Festival, Zilker Park, Austin, TX

Marking its 20th anniversary, the annual multi-day event bundling nightly music performances with daily panel discussions returns to Mercedes-Benz Superdome July 3-6.  Main stage acts will include Jill Scott, Ledisi and Charlie Wilson.

There will also be plenty of talent at the festival’s Superlounges.  The lineup includes Sevyn Streeter, Marsha Ambrosius, King, 112, , Naughty By Nature, Doug E. Fresh, Stephanie Mills, PJ Morton, Eve, Robert Glasper, Amel Larrieux, Big Sam’s Funky Nation, Raheem DeVaughn, Kourtney Heart, Elle Varner, Leela James, Liv Warfield, The Original Pinettes Brass Band and more.

Nephew Tommy will host each evening’s music.  Yolanda Adams will be the guest of honor at an all-star tribute to the gospel star at Essence’s Empowerment Experience, hosted by Donnie McClurkin. Other names of note participating in the festival’s Empowerment Experience include Rev. Al Sharpton, Steve Harvey and Iyanla Vanzant.

Photo: AP Photo
Gospelfest, Newark, Prudential Center, N.J.

Essence hasn’t yet nailed down its daily schedules, but you can buy weekend passes right now.  Click here for more info.