Summer Music Festival Guide

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Essence Music Festival (July 5-8)

This year marks the 17th birthday of the R&B, soul fest that descends upon New Orleans like humidity in a swamp. There's empowerment seminars, workshops and, of course, a series of concerts spread across four days that help lure hundreds of thousands each year to party in the "Crescent City." With performances from Mary J. Blige, Trey Songz, D'Angelo, Aretha Franklin, Stephanie Mills, Anthony Hamilton, Marsha Ambrosius, SWV, Teedra Moses, Robert Glasper, Mary Mary and Kevin Hart, it is looking to be another stellar year.  

(Photo:  Mark Davis/PictureGroup)

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