Posted by | Ray Cornelius

Essence Magazine is already gearing up for is its annual music festival in New Orleans. The women’s lifestyle and entertainment magazine released its 2013 EMF lineup today with Jill Scott, Maxwell, New Edition and Keyshia Cole as featured acts.

The festival is will also offer for the first time cultural and community programs through healthy living, job assistance and free family activities.

“The decision to rebrand The Essence Festival was a natural progression for this one-of-a-kind event, which has become a July 4th weekend tradition over the past 19 years,” says Essence Communications President Michelle Ebanks.

“The Essence Festival combines music, entertainment, culture, community, empowerment and inspiration to create a completely transformative experience across 4 full days that you won’t find anywhere else on the planet. We feature the world’s top performers each night across 8 live music stages and we bring the ‘page to the stage’ by bringing Essence magazine to life at the Convention Center during the day.”

Other scheduled performers include Charlie Wilson, LL Cool J, Brandy, Mint Condition, Big Daddy Kane, Blackstreet, Donnie McClurkin and Jody Watley. More acts will be announced at a later date.

The Essence Music Festival takes place July 4-7. Click here for tickets and additional information.