It’s the 4th of July weekend and the city of New Orleans is alive for the 2oth  annual Essence Music Festival (EMF).

EMP includes over 20 acts, in four days, of mostly R&B artists.

The festival’s concerts kicked off last night with Nas, Trey Songs, Jazmine Sullivan and K. Michelle.

Tonight’s line up features Prince, Janelle Monae, and Nile Rogers, on the Main Stage.

As an R&B head myself, I enjoy going and have been four times in the past eight years. Not only is it 4 nights of music, but 4 days of self-empowerment seminars and supporting Black vendors at the Convention Center.

The daytime seminars  this year feature leading public figures like Iyanla Van Zant, Soledad O’Brien and Steve Harvey, speaking on improving education for Black children, HIV/AIDS and how to manage your money.

Since the concerts are at the Superdome, there are super lounges that hold smaller audiences, like 5,000 people.

Some super lounge acts at this year’s festival are Marsha Ambrosius, Estelle, Naughty by Nature and SWV.

Additional information and tickets are available at: www.essence.com/festival