The Essence Festival, fondly known as “the party with a purpose,” has a rich history dating back to 1995 when it first graced the music scene as a one-time commemorative event. Originally created to honor the 25th anniversary of Essence, a magazine that has played a significant role in empowering African-American women, the festival quickly evolved into the largest celebration of African-American culture and music in the United States. Now, it serves as a beacon of diversity and unity, attracting artists from various genres and backgrounds.
In November 2022, Wizkid said he knew he made magic with Tems when they recorded the hit single “Essence.” Globally, “Essence” has gained immense prominence within the Afrobeats genre, attaining remarkable success on music charts in both the US and the UK. It has earned a coveted place on the Billboard Hot 100 and the UK Official Singles Chart. Its video has surpassed 150 million views on YouTube.
The three-day Essence Festival featured performances by Lauryn Hill, Missy Elliott, Megan Thee Stallion, Doug E. Fresh, Jill Scott, Salt-N-Peppa, alongside Wizkid and Tems.
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