Bentonville hosts concert promoting Essence Fest

BENTONVILLE, Ark. (AP) - Bentonville is hosting "The Road to Essence Festival" featuring R&B stars Maxwell, Estelle and others in advance of next month's Essence Festival in New Orleans.

Wal-Mart Stores Inc. is sponsoring the free concert, which also features Trey Songz and Hezekiah Walker. The Bentonville concert will be held at 6 p.m. Friday at Orchards Park, which is east of Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art.

Wal-Mart says The Road to Essence aims to build excitement before the July 4-7 event in New Orleans. Wal-Mart also sponsors that festival, which is expected to draw more than 400,000 visitors.

Maxwell is also headlining the New Orleans festival, along with Jill Scott and LL Cool J.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.