Are we going to act like people are not about to do the most for summer 2021, or should we just accept the inevitable? Whatever your opinion is, you can at least be in the know. So, here’s a curated list of diasporic festivals taking place this year.
Date: July 1-3
Location: Praia Da Rocha, Portugal
Are you craving a turn-up that samples sounds from across the Black diaspora? Afronation is the place for you! This year on the beaches of Portugal, the festival boasts a diverse line-up featuring Chris Brown, Burna Boy, Davido, Megan Thee Stallion, Machel Montano, Koffee, Kranium, Dadju, and others. What better way to unite the African diaspora than by celebrating its diversity?
Date: Dec 26- Jan 4
Location: Accra, Ghana
From attempting to break the record for the largest serving of Ghanaian style jollof rice to sampling sounds across the continent, Afrochella is your favorite uncle’s African cookout block party. This festival gives you a taste of Ghana and its Gold Coast glory. It’s not Ghana’s response to Coachella, but rather its own diasporic get-down. With community service opportunities and cultural excursions as part of the festival’s package, this is the place for you to turn up, help out and melanate with all of the sun’s glory under tropical weather!
Rocking The Daisies 2021
Date: Oct 1-3
Location: Cape Town and Johannesburg, South Africa
Why travel to southern France for a happy hour and vineyard experience when you could go to Cape Town, South Africa? Rocking the Daisies, held on Cloof Wine Estate in Cape Town, offers a beautiful farm experience for the festival goer with wine tasting, separate camping areas, access to a vineyard, and exquisite mountain views. The festival has been described as eco-friendly and offers some of the best gourmet food that South Africa has to offer. One of the best things about this festival is that it happens simultaneously in both Cape Town and Johannesburg, so you can choose the experience you want! This year’s line-up includes Ari Lennox, Stormzy, and local South African artists like Elaine, Scorpion Kings, and others.
Afropunk South Africa 2021
Location: Johannesburg, South Africa
Yes, you may have been to Afropunk before, but have you been to Afropunk South Africa? The beauty of punk culture—as in, rebelling and opposing the norm and imbued with a DIY ethic as the underdog—is that every part of the world has its own version. What does the South African punk scene look like? Tune in to Afropunk in Johannesburg to find out! This year’s line-up includes Sola.
Afropunk Paris 2021
Date: July 10-11
Location: Paris, France
Imagine a conglomerate of beautiful Black people from all over the world, radiating their melanated excellence in the city of light—what a view! Talk about an exhilarating experience filled with so much sauce. That is Afropunk Paris for you. Ever wonder what the Black experience is like in Europe? Connect with your siblings in the diaspora through a great line-up that includes emerging acts as well as icons.
The Chale Wote Street Art Festival
Date: Not known
Location: Accra, Ghana
Even though this festival has been postponed until further notice, it deserves a special mention. Founded in July 2011, the Chale Wote Street Art Festival brings together artists and community-based audiences to use art to rejuvenate public spaces. It includes street painting, graffiti murals, photo exhibitions, interactive installations, food, a fashion marketplace and parade, live music, and an Afro-cinema pavilion. Boasting an annual international attendance of 100,000 people, this is definitely a festival to keep on your radar.
For the festival lover in you…
Date: July 23-25
Location: Miami, FL
This summer, the 4/20 community will be loud and in real-time to celebrate the higher side of life in Miami. Special guests include Meg Thee Stallion, Lil Baby, Flo Milli, Benny the Butcher, City Girls, and the return of Bobby Shmurda—just to name a few. Rolling Loud is sure to be a weekend of good music, great vibes, and endless munchies.
Bonnaroo Arts & Music Festival 2021
Date: Sept 2-5
Location: Manchester, TN
This year is about “Celebrating 20 years of magic on the farm,” which is needed since 2020 sucked all life out of Tinkerbell’s fairy dust. The performance line-up includes Lizzo, Tyler the Creator, Kevin Gates, J.I.D., and more.
Date: Sept 17-19
Location: Las Vegas, NV
After the wack lemon buffet of last year, Life is Beautiful is the perfect lemonade. Live-music lovers can come together (giving 6 feet, of course) and enjoy artists such as the hood eccentric Young Thug, hot girl Megan Thee Stallion, OG veteran Ludacris, Harlem son A$AP Rocky, and more.
Date: Nov 5-6
Location: Houston, TX
Loyal fans of Astroworld have enjoyed past performances from Pharrell Williams, Megan Thee Stallion, Da Baby, Playboi Carti, and Lil Wayne, hence the high anticipation for the upcoming festival. Headliner and maestro Travis Scott is sure to bring his hometown Houston an unpredictable show of diverse music and purple cloud effects.
For the support-Black-business lover in you…
Date: Opens May 6
Location: Washington DC
Sandlot Southeast is proof that the support for Black businesses is not a trend but a mainstay. The outdoor event includes art, culture, musical performances, and food establishments that are all Black-owned.
Date: October 22-24
Location: Charlotte, NC
The unapologetically Black and bourgeois can partake in a fall weekend event that allows them to drink wine, taste food, and have good conversations—all in the name of Blackness. The founders of the festival drew their inspiration from the Harlem Renaissance and endeavored to create a space for Black culture to reconnect with its creative roots.
**A bonus for the never-too-soon lover in you…
Date: January 27-30, 2022
Location: Dominican Republic
The shea-butter love will be in its full glory with performances from Musiq Soulchild, Eric Benet, Fantasia, and neo-soul queen herself, Erykah Badu. This weekend is for the one-on-one couples who are sure to get misty-eyed over background vocals and long-winded high notes.
Location: New York, NY
So far, this event is postponed due to Covid-19. However, its past festivals catering to Black women’s natural hair and beauty are enough to keep eyes open and hopes high that Curlfest will return to continue its celebration of Black Girl Magic.