Festivals reach their prime during the summer time and there is usually a lot of competition between companies to snag all the hot talent before their competitors do. But lucky for us, the great thing about festivals is that you get to see many of your favorite artists perform on stage for the price of one. Of course we have Coachella, The Governors Ball and Rolling Loud, but i wanted to shed light on a couple of festivals made by black people for black people. Many of these festivals serve as a safe space for black creators across the globe to link up and well, create. Here is our guide to the best black festivals of the year.


1. AfroPunk

The official Website for AfroPunk described the organization` as “defining culture by the collective creative actions of the individual and the group. It is a safe place, a blank space to freak out in, to construct a new reality, to live your life as you see fit, while making sense of the world around you.”Afropunk is an annual event that takes place in Brooklyn, Paris, London, Atlanta, and Joburg. The music festival is a black celebration of life, music, love, and the creativity we all share. This music festival is at the top of my bucket list and should be on yours too. This year’s Afro Punk line up in Brooklyn includes SZA, Sampha, Kaytranada, Willow Smith, Princess Nokia, Little Simz, Sango and more! You can view the full line up here.

2. Brooklyn Hip-Hop Festival

The Brooklyn Hip-Hop festival will hit its 13th year this summer as one of the truest rap showcases in New York at this time. Although this years’ line up hasn’t been released, fans can take pride in knowing that the festival will not disappoint. Nas, Talib Kweli, Jay Z, and Jay Electronica are only a few names that have blessed the BK Hip-Hop festival stage over the years.

3. Essence Music Festival

The mother of all music festivals! This year’s star studded lineup for the Essence festival is overly pleasing. Diana Ross, Jhene Aiko, Chance The Rapper, Solange, Master P, Ari Lenox, John Legend, and BJ The Chicago Kid are only a few of the star power names on this year’s line up. The Essence Music Festival will take place in it’s home town of New Orleans, Louisiana from June 29th to July 2nd. Tickets for the festival can be brought for as low as $50! But remember that many parts of the Essence Festival are free and open to the public. To see the full line up, click here.

4. The Roots Picnic

Photo By @AverieCole www.averiecole.com

The 10th annual Roots picnic hosted by iconic hip-hop group, The Roots, will be held in thier hometown of Philadelphia,Pennsylvania on June 3rd and in New York City at Bryant Park on October 1st and 2nd. This festival is one that I’ve been dying to go to. The PA lineup includes Lil Wayne, 21 Savage, Solange, A Boogie Wit Da HOODIE, Khalid and more. The New York lineup includes Wu-Tang clan (omg) Lil Uzi Vert, Kevin Gates and Jeremih. View the full line up for PA here and for NY here.

5. One Music Fest

One Music fest, started back in 2010, is an annual urban progressive music festival fall favorite in Atlanta. ONE Musicfest features a “diverse range of music that includes everything from classic and next generation hip-hop, and soulful R&B, to alternative and rock.” This years ONE Musicfest will take place on September 8th and 9th. The lineup has yet to be released.

6. American Black Film Festival
If you are an aspiring actress, script writer, director, or producer than this festival is a playground for you. This years festival will take place in Miami Beach from June 14th to the 18th. The Festival has panel discussion as well as meet and greets. Additionally, the festival has master classes you can take for acting, producing, and pitching your own T.V show. If you wanted to make connections in the film industry than this festival is for you. The Festival will be showing Tupac’s All Eyez On Me biopic on its closing day.

7. Hot 97 Summer Jam

Im pretty sure we are all familiar with Hot 97 annual summer jam. The Summer Jam will take place on June 11th at Met Life Stadium in New Jersey. Last year’s line up included Tinashe, Young Thug, Bryson Tiller, and more. Even though tickets are not on sale and the lineup hasn’t been released, the Hot 97 summer jam has proven its ability to put together an awesome event for music fans everywhere.

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