Teyana Taylor, Wyclef Jean Among Headliners of Harlem Festival of Culture

Back in 2021, The Roots’ Questlove got behind the camera to put a spotlight on the iconic Harlem Cultural Festival, which took place in 1969 and boasted performances from the likes of Stevie Wonder, Gladys Knight & the Pips, and Sly and the Family Stone. The result of the Philly talent’s work was the critically acclaimed Summer of Soul, a documentary that subsequently won an Academy Award in 2022.

via: The Grio

Harlem Festival of Culture (HFC) organizers have revealed the festival’s inaugural lineup. Teyana Taylor and Wyclef Jean are listed among the headliners of the multi-day event, which is planned for July in New York City.

The HFC is a contemporary reboot of the 1969 Harlem Cultural Festival, which was chronicled in the Academy Award-winning 2021 documentary, “Summer of Soul.”

Rap legend MC Lyte and HFC music advisory board member will serve as the weekend’s host. “As a native New Yorker, I’m honored to host the very first Harlem Festival of Culture,” he said. “HFC is
definitely putting on for the city with this Festival and has planned something special that I think everyone — whether they’re from around the corner, across the country or around the world — will
enjoy. It is going to be a party and a celebration for the Culture like none other!”

Joining Lyte, Taylor and Jean is an eclectic array of Black musical talent from multiple eras and genres. The announced lineup includes Bell Biv DeVoe, Adam Blackstone, Fat Joe, Coco Jones, Remy Ma, Muni Long, Eric Bellinger, Tink and Ro James. In addition to Taylor, Cam’Ron, Ma$e and Doug E. Fresh are among the artists in the lineup with Harlem roots.

Estelle has been selected to host and curate the Dancehall LinkUP, featuring artists like Wayne Wonder, Nina Sky, Lumidee, Max Glazer, Nadine Sutherland, Rupee, Mr. Killa and Serani.

“For this inaugural year, we were very thoughtful and intentional in building what is an amazing lineup that aptly reflects the incredibly unique legacy that is intrinsic to the village of Harlem as well as the breadth and brilliance of Black music and culture,” said HFC Co-Founder and Technical & Talent Producer Yvonne McNair.

The majority of the festival performances will take place on Randall’s Island, but more intimate concerts are slated for the Apollo Theater. Aside from music, the festival’s activities will include an interactive art installation and a “curated” food.

Organizers have expressed particular excitement about the Mart 125 marketplace, a reimagining of the famed Harlem small business incubator and hub.

“One of our primary goals with this Festival is to amplify and support local, small businesses and creatives and to prioritize community engagement,” said HFC Co-Founder and Strategy & Business Development Officer Nikoa Evans. “From Mart 125 to our discussions surrounding critical issues such as mental health, this is also an investment in Harlem as much as it is a music festival
and it gives us the opportunity to powerfully impact the economic and social vitality of this
community in a real and meaningful way!”

General admission and VIP tickets for HFC, which is scheduled for July 28 to July 30, are currently on sale at harlemfestivalofculture.com. Harlem residents are eligible for special ticket discounts.

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