Mykia Jovan Was One Of The Best Parts Of Essence Fest’s First Day

Mykia Jovan captivated a tight-knit crowd on the first day of Essence Fest.

by Alex Galbraith
July 7, 2018

Mykia Jovan didn’t stand much of a chance against a megawatt headliner like Miguel. Her Superlounge set on Essence Fest’s first day seemed to be a die-hards only affair.

Jovan appeared in an outfit befitting of her seemingly supernatural voice. The NOCCA grad and Hollygrove resident stepped out onto the stage in a dress made of layers on layers of white tulle. The cloud-like outfit, when coupled with Jovan’s soaring voice, seemed to take the evening to a new elevation. Stepping out of the busy and loud walkways that ring the arena into her mellow, low-light space was a trip through the veil into another world, one a little bit higher than our own where Jovan could sing songs about praise and exultation.

The tracks from her debut album Elliyahu — a disambiguation of a Hebrew name meaning “most-exalted one” — found people willing to praise them among a close-in crowd. While she hasn’t quite reached the level of aggrieved queen Mary J. Blige, a track that repeatedly asked how a lover couldn’t need her when she’s “made herself so easy to need” got the room going. A speech from the stage highlighting the pain of the first wife in Coming To America (the one who was made to bark like a dog by Eddie Murphy) was a bit of an unexpected twist that got any audience members who had ever felt unwanted on to Jovan’s wavelength.

Check out our other coverage!

For more Mykia, stream her album Elliyahu.

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