Caitlyn Ridenour

6 Fan-Favorite Artists You Missed At Voodoo Fest 2016

While last year’s waterlogged event lost an entire day due to torrential rain, the 2016 Voodoo Music + Arts Festival in New Orleans was blessed with picture-perfect weather and a stacked lineup full of amazing artists and powerful performers over the celebratory Halloween weekend.

After running from stage to stage across City Park and taking in a plethora of performances over the weekend, here's a rundown of six of the best acts we saw at Voodoo Fest 2017.

The Weeknd

The Weeknd wasted no time in galvanizing the massive crowd of fans (many sporting his signature “XO” logo on clothing and even inked on skin) that packed the main stage area for his headlining set on the festival’s opening day, opening with “The Hills” before launching into his most recent single, the frenetic “False Alarm,” taken from his soon-to-be-released full-length, Starboy. Reaching as far back as his legendary debut mixtape, House of Balloons, and offering up an inspired set list (including his raunchy remix of Ty Dolla $ign’s “Or Nah”), singer Abel Tesfaye’s stage presence is both immense and immediate, even without his recently shorn crown of dreadlocks. Stalking the stage beneath an ominous illuminated triangle while delivering his angelic croon, he ended the set with the menacing pulse of the Starboy title track, produced with the assistance of notorious French disco robot duo, Daft Punk.

Tory Lanez

Lanez continues to vie for the title as the hardest working man in R&B as he moves closer to the breakout moment that will make his the superstar he’s clearly ready to be. Spending as much time out in the crowd as he did on the stage, the singer’s efforts to connect with his fans paid off handsomely as they carried his crowd-surfing body deep into the audience and back again, performing songs including “LUV” and “Say It” the entire time without missing a beat. Leaning heavily on his latest album, I Told You, Lanez earned every bit of love he wrung out of his adoring masses.

DJ Mustard

DJ Mustard took over the mostly EDM-focused Le Plur stage to preside over a massive hip-hop dance party that attracted one of the biggest and most enthusiastic crowds of the entire festival. Rolling out a panoramic set that covered everything from old-school classics by Snoop Dogg, DMX and Black Sheep to current hits by Drake, Future and Kanye West, Mustard’s rapid-fire style and crowd-hyping MC skills kept the multitudes of party people jumping for every moment that he was onstage.

Rae Sremmurd

Whenever Swae Lee and Slim Jimmy take the stage, it’s safe to say that the turn-up is real. Jimmy (who like the Weeknd has cut off his dreadlocks) hit the stage in a Dragon Ball Z Halloween costume that he peeled off piece-by-piece, tossing most of it into the crowd for clamoring fans to covet. Their set is nonstop energy, bouncing through party anthems “No Type,” “Black Beatles,” and “No Flex Zone” in what felt like a blur, with fans rapping along to seemingly every word. Running through the front rows and at times scaling the scaffolding along the stage, the duo’s infectious exuberance was not to be denied.

Sir The Baptist

This Chicago native makes music with a higher purpose than most: Sir The Baptist wants to save lives. Bringing a loud and clear message of self-empowerment, economic responsibility, and community building, he goes out of his way to spread love and unity through song. “You’re going to dance to a lot of stuff this weekend,” he stressed at one point. “Let me feed your soul.” Between songs from his debut album, The Preacher’s Kid, Sir The Baptist even went so far as to give out his phone number at the end of the set, calling it a “personal prayer line” for his fans.

Anderson .Paak and the Free Nationals

Paak fully embraced the Halloween spirit, as he and his band, the Free Nationals, took to the stage dressed in ‘80s metal drag to the opening of Guns ‘N Roses song, “Welcome to the Jungle.” It was the perfect jumping off point for Paak’s all the way live hip-hop heroics, with him going so far as to man the drum kit for a series of tracks. His huge main stage crowd was packed with fans that sang the lyrics of songs including “The Season/Carry Me,” “Room in Here” and “Come Down” right back at him. His star power is readily apparent, and it shouldn’t be long before he experiences a major crossover breakthrough that will elevate his superstar status to an even higher level.

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'In Living Color' Cast Celebrates 25th Anniversary With Bulleit Whiskey At Tribeca Film Festival Afterparty

Ahead of the 25th anniversary of the finale of In Living Color, the Tribeca Film Festival premiered the pilot episode of the legendary comedy sketch show before attendees at The Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Theater in New York City's Spring Studios.

After laughing over nostalgic skits like "The Homeboy Shopping Network," "Men On..." and "Love Connection," a few cast members joined New York Times editor Aisha Harris for a panel discussion about the historic television series. Creator Keenen Ivory Wayans, Kim Wayans, Tommy Davidson, and David Alan Grier shared stories about their time on set as well as their thoughts on the variety show's intention and impact as the first sketch comedy show from the lens of black culture.

Following the screening, Tribeca Film Festival attendees headed uptown to the Bulleit 3D Printed Frontier Lounge to for the 25-Year In Living Color Celebration. The cast and crew enjoyed bites and bourbon-infused drinks like "The Producer," "The Director," "Leading Lady," "Guest Star," and "Screenwriter." To add more fun, 3D printed cocktails were served with edible designs in the shot glass from 7000+ customized drinks like "With a Twist," "Dark Skull," and "Rock On."

As the night went on, DJ Shawn Wayans hit the turntable and spun all the throwback tunes as attendees hit the dancefloor. A good time indeed. Flip through photos from the event down below.

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Mahershala Ali Addresses 'Green Book' Backlash After Golden Globes Win

Mahershala Ali took home the Golden Globe for Supporting Actor in a Motion Picture for his performance in Green Book on Sunday night (Jan. 7). Following his acceptance speech, Ali addressed the backlash regarding the film's plot.

Critics appeared to be upset about the film's storyline which depicted the true relationship between jazz pianist and composer Dr. Don Shirley (played by Ali) and Tony "Lip" Vallelonga (Viggo Mortensen). In the movie, Shirley, a black man from the deep South in 1962, hires an unemployed, white bouncer from the Bronx as his security to escort him during a the segregation era. During their journey, the two develop an unbreakable bond while confronting their differences. The backlash came after Shirley's family stated that the film and Ali's portrayal was inaccurate and filled with lies.

"I will say this," Ali said in response to the controversy, “my job is always the same: I have to look at what I am doing and be responsible for it."

He added: "I respect the family…and Doc Shirley. I spoke to the studio and the family and at the end of the day you wish everyone was happy and you don’t want to offend anyone in any capacity."

This is Mahershala Ali's first Golden Globe win. Check out his acceptance speech above.

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Regina King Makes Vow To Employ Women On Everything She Produces

Regina King took home the Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actress in a Motion Picture for her role in If Beale Street Could Talk on Sunday (Jan. 7). While it was the Hollywood star's time to shine, King took a moment during her acceptance speech to acknowledge other women in the industry with a courageous pledge.

After thanking various contributors who helped her nab the win, King addressed a more important issue. "The reason why we do this is because we understand that our microphones are big and we are speaking for everyone," she said. "And I just want to say that I’m going to use my platform right now to say in the next two years, everything that I produce, I’m making a vow — it’s going to be tough — to make sure that everything that I produce that is 50% women."

She concluded: "And I just challenge anyone out there — anyone out there who is in a position of power, not just in our industry, in all industries — I challenge you to challenge yourselves and stand with us in solidarity and do the same."

King is now a two-time Golden Globe winner. She previously won the award in 2016 for Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in a Series, Limited Series or Motion Picture Made for Television for her role in American Crime. She was also nominated this year for her performance in Seven Seconds but did not win.

Watch Regina King's acceptance speech at the 2019 Golden Globes n the video above.

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