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Lakecia Benjamin
Elizabeth LeitzellLakecia Benjamin

A free R&B festival is coming to Fort Greene Park

Thank you, BAM!

Melissa Kravitz Hoeffner
Written by
Melissa Kravitz Hoeffner

Free music is coming to NYC this October when Brooklyn Academy of Music's (BAM) R&B festival heads to Fort Greene Park

One of Brooklyn's beloved outdoor traditions, this annual festival has been through several renditions and locations since its start in 1995, the latest designed to bring together the community along with music legends and groundbreaking artists. 

2021's BAM R&B Festival marks BAM's first live, in-person music event since the pandemic shuttered the venue and all its live programming in March 2020. All concerts will take place outdoors, with safety protocols in place for artists, audiences and staff. Best of all? All performances are free to the public! 

The lineup for Fort Greene Park will showcase artists from Brooklyn and around the world, including Memphis-based singer-songwriter Valerie June, Tony Award-winning playwright Stew with his band The Negro Problem, jazz pianist Matthew Whitaker and the Grammy Award-winning singer Mykal Rose, formerly of Black Uhuru. Jazz saxophonist Lakecia Benjamin and her band the Soul Squad, Queens-born soul surrealist duendita, and more are all on the lineup. 

“After the past challenging year, we are thrilled to bring the energy and dynamism of our beloved R&B concerts to Fort Greene Park. The Festival celebrates the versatility and undeniable influence R&B has on other genres by bringing together an eclectic lineup of music legends and bold new voices, each with their own distinctive style and sound," said BAM Co-Interim President, Coco Killingsworth. “Our beloved concerts will continue to bring free music and incredible talent to Brooklyn. And we can't wait to welcome you back.”

No tickets are required for the BAM R&B Festival performances, which will be held on a stage on the lawn near Myrtle Ave, Saturday and Sunday, October 2 and 3 and October 9 and 10, 4pm— 7pm. Proof of Covid-19 vaccination and a valid ID for all attendees over the age 12, will be required, as are face masks. A full schedule of performances can be seen at

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