Janelle Monàe: What I Love About New Orleans

Image: Sakura/

Image: Sakura/

July is a big month for me. In addition to being theFashionSpot's guest editor, I have been honored to be asked to play the Essence Music Festival, which the magazine holds in New Orleans every summer. I love going down to NOLA — something about the atmosphere is very welcoming and feels like a home away from home. 

Around Essence Festival, there are a lot of food trucks on the corners if you walk around downtown. I love trying that food because it's homemade, it's thick and the people are just so nice. They get excited when you come to eat. I really enjoy browsing the food trucks because I find the food is more authentic. With these mom-and-pop places, it's like going into your auntie's kitchen.

Because I'm usually working when I'm down there, I never have much opportunity to really chill or party in New Orleans. But when I do visit, I try to meet people and bring the party to my fans. They love me, I love them…my concert actually becomes the party, so I like to make up for the festivities during my shows.

Catch me at the Essence Music Festival if you're in New Orleans! I'll be hitting the stage this Friday, July 4 at 8:20 p.m. Celebrate America's Independence Day with me and the legendary Prince and Nile Rodgers. I promise…it's going to be a fantastic show, and as always, I'll bring the party to the stage!