Jay-Z announces 2-day Philly festival acts that 'embody the American spirit'
By Mesfin Fekadu, AP
May 16, 2012, 12:05 am TWN
PHILADELPHIA--Jay-Z is in a Philadelphia State of Mind: The rapper announced a two-day music festival Monday in the City of Brotherly Love.
The "Budweiser Made in America" festival will feature nearly 30 acts "that embody the American spirit" across three stages at Fairmount Park on Sept 1. and Sept. 2.
"It's such an iconic place, so it felt like a natural fit," Jay-Z said of Philadelphia in an interview after the press conference. "You'll get to come out and have two great days, listen to some amazing music (and) discover some new bands."
Jay-Z was joined by Mayor Michael Nutter on Monday atop the city's art museum steps, made famous by Rocky. The festival will benefit United Way Greater Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey.
The New York-born rapper said 70 percent of the acts are confirmed, and will include rap, rock, R&B, Latin and dance performers.
"I've always believed in great music," Jay-Z said. "I don't believe in the lines that separate music ... that's for people that can't easily define what they're hearing, so they have to put it in some sort of box. Me, I listen to anything I like."
Tickets for the festival go on sale May 23.
A feverish crowd of fans was on hand, chanting his name. When one yelled out that Jay-Z's was the best, the rapper paused and said: "I agree."
The 42-year-old entrepreneur also talked about a film deal between his Roc Nation imprint and Will Smith's Overbrook Entertainment. He said they're close to completing the film "Annie," which will star Smith's daughter, singer Willow.
"We'll be producing a number of films," he said. "We may have another (film) that comes before it, but we're looking at shooting `Annie' pretty soon. (We're) just getting script together and that's pretty close."
Jay-Z and Beyonce had their first daughter, Blue Ivy, in January. He said of Beyonce's first Mother's Day: "Amazing. I can just imagine that sort of feeling. It was pretty good for her."