Two weeks ago, we brought you the first lineup announcement for the second ever offering of Soulfest, Australia’s own soul, R&B, hip hop festival. Leading the pack was Mary J Blige, Talib Kweli and De La Soul among others. That was enough to give me heart palpitations, but now, the second announcement is here.
Lauryn Hill is easily one of the greatest neo-soul artists in the world. Part of The Fugees before going on to launch an incredibly successful solo career, her voice, attitude and exploration of culture, relationships, religion and more in her lyrics led her to be considered something of a revolutionary in the genre. Her foray into solo music, The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill, went on to win a handful of Grammys, amassing millions of album sales and immense respect in the process. (If you want to learn more about the album, read the Flashback Friday feature about it here.) One of the first female artists to rise to prominence on a healthy blend of soul, R&B and rap, she’s also an unsung hero of the world of female MCs, with a flow to rival any of her contemporaries. Not one to travel or perform live particularly often, this is sure to be one hell of a show.
Oh, and let’s all come together and pray that she and Mary J Blige reunite to perform the one and only I Used To Love Him:
So, the first thing that popped into my mind when I saw that Talib Kweli was playing Soulfest was, “It’s a shame Mos Def was on the bill last year, if they were both playing they could’ve done Black Star.” And now my prayers have been answered. For those who don’t know, Black Star is a one-time collaboration between the two legendary rappers; they released Mos Def and Talib Kweli are Black Star in 1998, before either of them had pulled the attention of countless international fans. It was probably the first or second underground hip hop album I ever listened to, and is an unparalleled GOAT in my opinion. The racially-charged, socially aware album celebrates African American history and culture, philosophical outlooks on society, the mid-’90s hip hop community, life in Brooklyn and the need for hip hop to repair itself after years of gun, gang and drug-related violence. (There’s references to the shootings of Biggie and Tupac, for instance.)
I cannot explain how much this performance will personally mean to me, and I can’t stress enough of a need to purchase tickets to see Black Star (hopefully a sideshow is in the works). This will go down in history.
Miguel visited Australia last year, and we loved him so much that he’s headed back for Soulfest this October. Ahh, Miguel. An R&B artist who simply oozes sex and seduction, Miguel is unique in that he’s been embraced equally by the mainstream and by the hip hop community. Armed with a stunning voice and endlessly sensual beats, he’s currently getting ready to drop his new album, the highly anticipated Wildheart (with one HELL of an album cover) on June 3. Known for his magnetic stage presence and his stunning live show, this will be a festival highlight for sure.
7 times Grammy nominee Jazmine Sullivan is rounding off the Soulfest headliners. In the six or so years since she entered the scene on her acclaimed album Fearless, she’s written for, and collaborated with, Snoop Dogg, Mary J Blife, Jennifer Hudson and more. In 2011, Sullivan went on hiatus from the music industry, and it looked like we were going to miss out on more from the highly talented artist. But in January this year, Reality Show came out – and now’s your chance to catch the woman in action, on her first ever Australian tour.
So the full second lineup is:
BLACK STAR (TALIB KWELI & MOS DEF)
Jones Jnr (Syd only)
Yum Yum (Syd only)
Maribelle & 45 Session
They will be joining the following:
Mary J. Blige
De La Soul
BJ Chicago Kid
Soul of Sydney DJs
General public sales on Wednesday May 27, 10 am.
Tickets from www.soulfest.com.au
Solid Gold VIP (Limited Capacity): $326.60
This ticket includes access to a purpose-built marquee in Sydney, and venue balconies in Melbourne, both featuring exclusive, unobstructed views. Also you’ll have access to a full private bar, express VIP entry, 2 complimentary drink vouchers and 1 complimentary food voucher, 1 exclusive t-shirt, free entry into the official after-party, hostess service and a lanyard.
VIP Front of Stage: $199 (First Release)
General Admission: $149 (First Release)