Lakeside featuring Mark Wood Headlined the 2nd Annual Inglewood Music Festival

The City of Inglewood hosted the biggest party for a good cause, on Saturday, June 29, 2024, at Darby Park, from 11:00-7:00 pm.

A Piece of Paradise, (Photo by Ricky Richardson)

By Ricky Richardson | Contributing Writer

(Inglewood, CA)- The City of Inglewood hosted the biggest party for a good cause, on Saturday, June 29, 2024, at Darby Park, from 11:00-7:00 pm.

This was a day of free family-friendly festivities. The 2nd Annual Inglewood Music Festival was held in support of the Inglewood High School Marching Band. Inglewood Mayor James T. Butts, Jr., has proudly nominated the Inglewood High School Marching Band to represent the City of Champions in the prestigious America’s National Independence Day Parade, on July 4, 2025, in Washington D.C.

Thousands of music aficionados gathered once again (2nd Time Around), to groove, move, shop, dance, arts and crafts while enjoying the soundtrack of a diverse mix of music on the final days of Black Music Month.

Inglewood residents and visitors from surrounding communities heeded the call to get their tickets, and to join their neighbors to sing, dance, celebrate, and have a good time while supporting public education.

In its second year, the Inglewood Music Festival has already become a fixture in the city known for sponsoring and supporting events for community members to enjoy memorable experiences. The good doctor prescribed a measurable dose of good music for the soul’s benefit.

DJ Qwess Coast took the party people, aka, grown folks back to school for an immersive soundtrack of old and new school tracks. Smiles, laughter, and delightful conversations were evident throughout the afternoon.

Adai Lamar, program host, KJLH 102.3FM, Radio Free served as emcee. The show got underway with welcome remarks from Adai Lamar and City Councilmember Dionne Faulk, host of the 2nd Annual Inglewood Music Festival.

Inglewood High School Marching Band led by Band Director affectionally known as Mr. J. The band gave the crowd a sample of their collective greatness that earned them the esteemed opportunity to showcase their talents on Constitution Avenue for the prestigious America’s National Independence Day Parade. Inglewood High School Marching Band will perform alongside renowned invited bands, fife and drum corps, and other distinguished participants. I’m excited and happy for my alma mater. This event marks a momentous occasion not only for the band, but for the entire city and the Inglewood Unified School District, as they proudly march in perfect harmony while embodying the spirit of patriotism in this red, white, and blue celebration of America’s birthday.

A Piece of Paradise added to the mix with a crowd-pleasing set of tracks. The crowd was vibing to the contagious rhythms of reggae. Highlights from their set were “I Feel Good,” “No, No, No,” “One Love,” “Don’t Make Me Cry,” “No More Lies,” and “Practice What You Preach.” The band took it up a notch with popular Belizean singer Preachaman who played “Brukdong” style music.

Louie Cruz Beltran is a singer, songwriter, percussionist, and comedian. These four attributes were on full display throughout his set. The band spiced up the proceedings with a fiery set of Latin Jazz and salsa. They opened with “Black Magic Women,” “Coming Home Baby,’ and Chameleon,” to name a few. The band consisted of Louie Cruz Beltran on congas/vocals, Carlos Vivas-keyboards, Robert Kyle-sax, Ernie Nuñez on bass, and JD Perez on drums.

Durti Ryce, (Photo by Ricky Richardson)

Durti Ryce is a tribute band comprised of exceptionally talented musicians and artists united by their legacy and shared love of soulful R&B music. Nothing says let’s get this party started than a performance celebrating Frankie Beverly & Maze. This was a true, unforgettable experience for all in attendance. The band performed the classic, timeless hits “Rock Creek Park”, by The Blackbyrds “Happy Feelin’s,” “Silky Soul,” “Golden Time of the Day,” “Running Away,” “While I’m Alone,” “Can’t Get Over You,” “Joy and Pain,” “We Are One,” and “Before I Let Go.” On a related note, Frankie Beverly & Maze will perform on Sunday, July 7, during the 30th Annual Essence Music Festival in New Orleans. This is part of their Farewell Tour. Catch them while they are touring for the final time in 2024.

Ambrosia, a rock and jazz fusion band kept up the momentum while taking the crowd down memory lane by performing tracks from their catalog. Highlights were “How Long Has This Been Going On,” “You’re The Only Woman,” “Living on My Own,” “Love is Alive” by the late great Gary Wright, “How Much I Feel” sampled by Big Sean and Kanye West, “Holding On to Yesterday” and “Biggest Part of Me.”

Eric Darius Band, (Photo by Ricky Richardson)

Saxophonist Eric Darius, my home boy from Tampa, Florida. Eric fired up the festivities with an electrifying set to the crowd’s delight. Their smokin’ set list was “Night On The Town,” “Goin’ All Out,” “Work,” “That’s My Jam,” “About Last Night” and concluded with “Fired Up.”

Lakeside with Mark Wood, (Photo by Ricky Richardson)

Technical issues delayed the set by Lakeside with Mark Wood. The crowd was rewarded for their patience as the group performed “Your Love is the One,” “Raid,” “It’s All the Way Live,” “Something About That Women,” and “Visions of My Mind” to name a few. The wow factor was elevated and on full display throughout their set. The party people aka, grown folks were in agreement that this was a great way to end the 2nd Annual Inglewood Music Festival as they did a cha, cha to their respective vehicles or other modes of transportation.