Essence Festival Picks- Day Three

Kermit Ruffins and the BBQ Swingers begin their Superlounge set at 8:15 PM.  I would get there early.  His star is rising with appearances in the HBO series Tremé and I expect a large crowd for his set of good time New Orleans jazz.  Lalah Hathaway (pictured) does two sets beginning at 9:30 PM.  Some may argue that she is riding the coattails of her legendary father, Donny, but she has found her own way as a soulful vocalist.  Politics, which has been a standard feature of big time festivals, finally comes into play at the Essence Festival and demonstrates that the “party with a purpose” has definitely in the big leagues.  That is the only explanation for why Frankie Beverly and Maze have been replaced as the closing act by Earth, Wind and Fire.  However, they will still put on a great set as they did at the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival when they rescued the day after Aretha Franklin bailed at the last minute.

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