Photo Credit: Photo Credit: Bash Visual
Travel Around the World to These Black Music Festivals
Warm weather and longer days are around the corner, and so is the season of music festivals. From fan-favorite artist lineups to food courts with unique eats, the best festival delivers unforgettable performances, networking, and after-parties for thousands who share a deep love of the culture.
Festival fans come together in cities worldwide to celebrate art, cultural experiences and music created by and for the culture. With COVID upending many festival operations over the last few years, the resurgence of festival season has music lovers itching to travel.
There’s no shortage of genres of music to tap into this music festival season. Whether you love R&B or want a mashup of your favorite Afrobeats artists in a dreamy destination, there’s something for everyone. Here are some of the top festivals coming up this year.
Something In The Water
April 28 to April 30 in Virginia Beach, Virginia
A creation of multi-talented producer and artist Pharrell Williams, Something In The Water brings top acts to the beach for a weekend of music and art. Something In The Water announcements for this year are still under wraps, but if past lineups are any signal, then 2023 will be a good year for music.
In 2022, the festival moved to DC and saw performances from more than forty acts. Some performances included Ashanti, Ja Rule, Chloe x Halle, Davido, Lil Baby, Snoh Aalegra, Usher and more.
This year, Something In The Water will head back to its original home, Virginia Beach.
Broccoli City Festival
July 15 to July 16 in Washington, D.C.
Broccoli City always promises a good time and is worth the weekend trip to Washington, DC.
This year’s lineup features performances from Lil Uzi Vert, Jazmine Sullivan, Brent Faiyaz, Glorilla, Chloe and the City Girls. The weekend’s Battle of the Bands event will bring together DC’s own Backyard Band, UCB, TCB, Reaction Band and others.
The team behind Broccoli City centers its work on creativity and community by building innovative experiences that intersect technology, music, art and social impact. With two stages, 40 artists and DJs, 50 brand vendors and 40 healthy food vendors, there’s something to keep the entire group entertained.
Location and dates are to be announced
Afropunk took Brooklyn by storm with its namesake cultural celebration and aesthetic in 2005. The festival has also expanded its wings over the years to erect major festivals in Minneapolis, Miami and Brazil. In addition to the Spinthrift Market featuring exhibitors, Afropunks’ Bites ‘n Beats indulges festivalgoers with food trucks and other eats.
Last year, Afropunk brought together a stellar lineup including The Roots, Burna Boy, Isaiah Rashad, Lucky Daye, Freddie Gibbs, Adekunle Gold, SPINALL, and others. Dates and music performances for the year haven’t been announced yet.
June 28 to June 30 in Portimao, Portugal
Afro Nation considers itself “the world’s biggest Afrobeats festival.” Each year, the organizers consistently secure fire lineups. Afro Nation fans usually touch down in Ghana every December for several days of epic beach concerts. However, this year, Afro Nation is taking on Portimao, Portugal, with a three-day lineup of chart-topping artists, hosts and DJs.
Some of the performances in Portugal include Burna Boy, Wizkid, 50 Cent, Davido, and Booba. Ayra Starr, Fireboy DML, Uncle Waffles, and more than forty other acts will also hit the stage this June.
June 29 – July 3, 2023 in New Orleans, Louisiana
ESSENCE Fest is an annual celebration for hundreds of thousands of Black women and men seeking the best of the city’s food, culture, and weekend of entertainment.
As the largest African-American culture and music event in the United States, ESSENCE Fest continues to grow each year. Head to the convention center to shop with marketplace exhibitors or participate in free brand activations. Try different cuisines at the eats food court with food vendors and watch celebrity chefs cook their favorite dishes. ESSENCE Fest also recently added a film component to showcase and connect rising talent in motion media.
Grab your family, friends or best travel partner to eat and dance your way through the streets of New Orleans this Fourth of July weekend. There is no word on who will take the stage this year. However, online conversations are buzzing about a celebration for the 50th anniversary of hip hop.
Dates are to be announced, but it will take place in Atlanta, Georgia
One Musicfest is one of the largest multi-day music festivals for hip-hop artists across the country. Now, in its 13th year, One Musicfest brings together more than 50,000 people to attend a weekend filled with outdoor concerts in Atlanta’s Central Park.
Last year, One Musicfest saw headlining performances from Lil Baby, Rick Ross, Gucci Mane, Jeezy, Jazmine Sullivan and Tems.
Dates and artist lineup announcements are still to come for 2023. However, one thing’s for sure: One Musicfest always puts on for the South and good music.
December 2023 in Accra, Ghana
AfroFuture Fest, the overwhelmingly successful festival may have a new name, but it still has the same Afrobeat vibes. As one of the largest events to take place in Ghana throughout the year, thousands of people converge on Accra for the holidays to attend AfroFuture. Over the span of two weeks, Afrofuture hosts dozens of events ranging from its flagship festival to art and fashion from across the African diaspora.
The 2022 lineup was an exciting variety of artists, including Burna Boy and Asake as show headliners. Other performers included King Promise, Stonebwoy, Shatta Wale, Kuami Eugene and many others.
If you’ll be traveling to the continent or country for the first time, AfroFuture is the anchor and welcome introduction you want.
Related: 14 African Music Festivals That Are Worth Catching A Flight For