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BET just getting bigger and livelier

Nightlife

David Goodson | 6/5/2014, 1:35 p.m.

In most instances, the slogan is along the lines of “Big Just Got Bigger.” However, on the weekend of June 27, the more appropriate slogan would be “Live Just Got Livelier or Liver.” (That, however, could be misconstrued as liver, the body organ or food, but anyway.)

The Los Angeles community is gearing up for the city’s largest music festival, dubbed BET Experience, at L.A. Live. However, in the not-so-distant past, the BET Awards were more than enough to electrify the City of Angels for a weekend, but a visionary felt there was still void in place.

Explained Paxton Baker, EVP and GM of Centric and executive in charge of BET Experience, of what prompted the creation of BET Experience, “An ongoing desire from our chairperson, Debra Lee, to bring the BET brand to life from off the TV screen to the physical landscape for the BET viewers and to those who love and appreciate the African-American culture.”

Highlighting the BET experience are three nights of concerts at the Staples Center (headlined by Maxwell, Jill Scott, Outkast, Rick Ross, Mary J. Blige and Jennifer Hudson) and Club Nokia (DJ Khaled, Future, the Roots featuring Method Man and Red Man, Warren G and Doug E. Fresh). In addition, there is a two-day free fan fest, which includes the newly introduced “Acoustically Speaking” music series, featuring intimate sets by Faith Evans, Tank and Alice Smith, among others; the Sprite Celebrity Basketball Game; live tapings of “106 & Park”; and the newly minted “Genius Talks,” as well as a gospel showcase.

Of the new additions, “They add more color, verve and a broader experience of the African-American culture from music, film and comedy.”

With the overflow of events, Miller suggested one not to sleep on will be “‘The Centric Presents: The Next Comedy All-Star,’ hosted by Joe Torry. The winner will take all in this comedy showcase. The grand prize is $25,000, and the winner also gets a televised stand-up special on Centric and a spot on the Centric Comedy All-Star Weekend in Las Vegas.”

In addition to the actual experience weekend, BET Networks and AEG announced a partnership with Baldwin Hills Crenshaw in Los Angeles to present an exciting, weekly Saturday concert series that began on May 31 as a prequel. The concerts—which are free of charge and open to the public—conclude with a final performance on Saturday, June 21. Just a few of the artists scheduled to perform include Eric Benet, Marsha Ambrosius, “American Idol” winner Candice Glover, Day 26, RaVaughn, Eric Bellinger, Adrian Marcel, Dondria, Mila J. and more.

“We’re thrilled to expand the impact of the BET Experience at L.A. Live to include a weekly concert series at Baldwin Hills Crenshaw. We will showcase an exciting musical lineup featuring some of our Music Matters artists and a few surprises along the way on the road to the BET Experience.”

Single-day tickets and three-day packages for Staples Center and Club Nokia concerts are all on sale now. Single-day Staples Center ticket prices range from $59.50 to $149.50. The three-day Staples Center Concert ticket packages range from $199 to $399. Ticket prices for the Club Nokia shows range from $25 to $79.50. Tickets can be purchased at www.betexperience.com or at www.AXS.com.

To have exclusive access to the best seats and roll like a true VIP throughout the weekend, a limited number of VIP packages are available. Both the Gold and Diamond VIP packages include the only public access to purchasing BET Awards tickets. Get the best of everything with the Diamond Package, which includes hospitality throughout the weekend, a special BET Awards red-carpet experience and much more! Visit betexperience.com/VIP for more information.

Enuff said. My ticket is booked and I’m going, going back, back to Cali. It’s a couple weeks away, so I got time to get right. Holla next week. Till then, enjoy the nightlife.