ESSENCE, the preeminent media brand for African-American women, continues its commitment to recognizing excellence and achievement during its 4th annualESSENCE Black Women in Music event taking place on February 6, 2013 in Los Angeles. The invitation-only, red-carpet GRAMMY® Week event will highlight the contributions of Black women in music with a special salute to what's current, what's new and what's next. Hosted by global, multi-platinum, GRAMMY® Award-winning artist Kelly Rowland and ESSENCE editor-at-large Emil Wilbekin , the 2013 event will shine a spotlight on artists Lianne La Havas and Solange Knowles , who will each perform live sets as part of the celebration.
Each year, ESSENCE Black Women in Music brings out the music industry's elite to celebrate the accomplishments of the most influential movers and shakers in the business. Launched in 2010 as a part of ESSENCE magazine's year-long 40th anniversary commemoration, previous honorees include: Rowland; music industry veteran Sylvia Rhone; GRAMMY®-nominated artist Janelle Monae; and GRAMMY-winner Mary J. Blige.
"What makes ESSENCE Black Women in Music so distinctive is that we are able to highlight the success of amazing African-American women in music, who are not only changing the game, but also creating the rules," said ESSENCE editor-in-chief Constance C.R. White. "At ESSENCE, our dedication to showcasing the unique contributions of Black women runs deep -- whether through the magazine or during our annual ESSENCE Festival. This year, we look forward to recognizing the incredible gifts ofLianne La Havas and Solange Knowles, who are each making their own inimitable mark on the industry and around the world."
"The contributions of Black women in music, whether on the stage or in the boardroom, are vast and impressive beyond measure," said ESSENCE president Michelle Ebanks. "ESSENCE is committed to honoring the diversity and creativity of both emerging and established artists during this annual event, and we thank our partners, Lincoln and My Black is Beautiful, for their role in advancing the achievements of Black women."
ESSENCE's exclusive February 2013 issue GRAMMY Insider package (on newsstands on January 11th) will also feature 28 Days of Black Women in Music -- a timeline of moments past, present and future celebrating women who rock all month long, including mainstays: Rihanna, Beyonce, Mariah Carey andLauryn Hill; as well as a new generation of artists including Azealia Banks, Emeli Sande, Gaby Amarantos and more.
Solange's latest single, "Losing You" and her critically acclaimed EP: True, with collaborator Dev Hynes, is reflective of her journey as an artist, bringing listeners a fresh new sound, "with a breezy fusion of singer-centric R&B, 1980's pop, and lanky mid-tempo hip-house beasts," as described by Spin Magazine. Along with her success as a DJ, Solange previously released two albums, Solo Star (2003) and Sol-Angel and the Hadley St. Dreams (2008), which entered the top ten of Billboard's 200 chart.
Lianne La Havas:
The Associated Press called London-based singer/songwriter Lianne La Havas 2012 Is Your Love Big Enough? (Nonesuch Records) "not just one of the year's best debuts, but one of the year's best albums." La Havas' live show has been equally lauded, with the Los Angeles Times saying, "She was, to put it simply, fantastic, and transcended the oft clamorous Roxy.a natural talent with boundless potential whose charisma is matched only by her musical prowess." The daughter of a Greek father and a Jamaican mother, La Havas fell in love with music at a young age and cites her parents' favorites as a huge influence: artists like Louis Armstrong, Charlie Parker, Jill Scott, Erykah Badu and Mary J. Blige. La Havas's acclaim has been steadily growing over the last three years, with a sold-out tours around the UK, US, and Europe and a handful of high-profile media appearances, including performances on Late Night with David Letterman , Conan, and Later with Jools Holland. Many of La Havas' musical heroes have come to hear her perform, asked her to open for them, or invited her to collaborate, including Prince, Stevie Wonder, Robert Plant, Alicia Keys, Bon Iver, and Erykah Badu.