Janet Jackson Remembers Her Father at Essence

{Updated] Keeping the fans in the Superdome has been a challenge for the acts that close the Essence Festival, but Janet Jackson didn’t start to hemorrhage audience members until a lengthy mid-set DJ break. That ended with the band playing “Let’s Wait a While” as an instrumental, which fans took as a chance to sing or leave. Still, once she was back onstage and performing, the exodus slowed significantly.

Jon Batiste, Stay Human Keep it Loose at Jazz Fest

After a soft Friday at Jazz Fest that included Trey Anastasio jamming (not me), Nas not giving The Soul Rebels their due (a show that has sat worse with me as time passes) and Harry Connick Jr. reminding people that he’s an entertainer (who outside of a casino values that? Who wants their musicians to be jacks of all trades?), Saturday made me happy and confirmed that I wasn’t simply grumpy.

Prince, Womack, and the Essence of Essence

[Updated] I was sad to learn that soul legend Bobby Womack passed away Friday. I interviewed him for almost an hour before he played Jazz Fest this year. That story is online here, and in it he denies that he was living with Alzheimer's Disease, and contended that a reporter who didn't get a joke started that rumor.

This Week's Soundtrack

1. "Daylight" - Bobby Womack

Life During Bowl Time

The Super Bowl is over, the lights are back on in the Dome, and know we're left with the second week of Carnival starting tomorrow. Here are a few random post-Bowl thoughts:

- It was clear this weekend that hip-hop and urban R&B are the music America parties to. Over the course of the weekend, Lil Wayne, Nelly, Ludacris, Big Boi, Flo Rida and Pitbull performed (that I'm aware of). Add to that Justin Timberlake, Janelle Monae, Santigold, The Roots, Diplo and Solange Knowles (doing a DJ set), and the evidence is hard to argue with.

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