In coming weeks, a pair of festivals will bring premium, live R&B to Hampton Roads. Lalah Hathaway will headline the Ella Fitzgerald Music Festival in Newport News.Fantasia and Joe will give Portsmouth's Umoja Festival a jolt of soul.
Hathaway, daughter of the legendary singer Donny Hathaway, will perform at the Downing-Gross Cultural Arts Center 8 p.m. April 27. Tickets are $35. To purchase, call 247-8969 or visit the Downing-Gross website.
Her most recent album, "Where It All Begins," looks back to the influence of her father while also pushing into the future.
AllMusic.com described Hathaway was described as "one of the finest adult contemporary R&B vocalists" of the recent era.
The Umoja Festival, an annual celebration in Olde Towne Portsmouth, on May 26 will feature a pair of strong singers with gospel roots and solid hit-making resumes. The concert will take place at the nTelos amphitheater.
The raspy-voiced"American Idol"star and Grammy-winner Fantasia found success with tunes including "I Believe," "Truth Is," and "I'm Doin' Me."
R&B loverman Joe, who grew up in Georgia and Alabama, saw his tune "Stutter" hit the No. 1 spot on Billboard's singles chart in 2001. His most recent album is "The Good, The Bad and The Sexy" from last year.
Tickets for the Umoja concert go on sale at 10 a.m., March 30 from Ticketmaster. Prices range from $20 to $47. There is a $3 discount on gold circle and lawn tickets with military ID. Children 12 and younger are free on the lawn with a paid adult admission.
Here's the media release about the Umoja show.
FANTASIA AND JOE
HEADLINE UMOJA FESTIVAL AT
NTELOS WIRELESS PAVILION
Saturday, May 26
Portsmouth, Va. – Fantasia and JOE will headline the annual Umoja Festival on Saturday, May 26 at the nTelos Wireless Pavilion. Doors open at 6:30 p.m., and the concert begins at 7:30 p.m.
Fantasia was fully launched into stardom during American Idol, where she performed "Summertime" and Simon Cowell remarked that she was the best contestant to ever compete in any competition, including the more than 70 previous champions crowned nationally and internationally since the show began its first global incarnations. On the show’s 2004 finale, more than 65 million votes were cast in order to determine the winner, up from 24 million in 2003. It was the highest final vote in the show's history, and Fantasia won by more than 1.3 million votes. At age 19, she was the youngest American Idol winner
Fantasia won the Grammy Award in 2011 for Best Female R&B Vocal Performance for "Bittersweet." She previously had two Grammy nominations.
Joe Thomas known affectionately as JOE, has numerous platinum and gold CDs. The son of two preachers, he spent much time during his youth in church singing, playing guitar and even directing the choir.
Tickets go on sale at 10 a.m., Wednesday, July 1 through all Ticketmaster outlets, including online (www.ticketmaster.com) and by phone (800.745.3000). Orchestra tickets are $47, and Gold Circle tickets are $37, general admission lawn tickets just $20, including service and facility fees. There is a $3 discount on Gold Circle and lawn tickets with military ID. Children 12 and younger are free on the lawn with a paid adult admission.
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