This week, Grammy nominated singer Andra Day released a series of mini films to coincide with her Rise Up Essence Festival program. This past May, the songstress launched her program with Coca-Cola, McDonald’s and Essence Festival in New York City. The program features Day and the lyrics to her single “Rise Up” and the film “I Rise”, on close to 40 million Coca-Cola cups in select McDonald’s restaurants across the country. McDonald’s, Coca-Cola and Essence Festival have partnered with the app Shazam to feature new visual recognition technology for content distribution. Each cup becomes a portal to an exclusive digital experience where music enthusiasts can scan the specially marked Coca-Cola cups and watch the short film “I Rise”, featuring music by Day. Filmmaker Yoruba Richen wanted “I Rise” to highlight African American women who are making tremendous strides in their communities. Among the women featured in the film are Andra Day, Brandice Daniel, Latoya Cantrell, Kyemah McEntyre, Nzingha Prescod, Bene Vera, Kimberly Goldson, Kathyrn Finney and Michaela Angela Davis. When music fans as well as McDonald’s customers purchase Coca-Cola fountain products at McDonald’s restaurants, they’ll learn how to enter to the Coco-Cola Rise Up Essence Fest Sweepstakes for an opportunity to see Andra Day perform at the Essence Music Festival in New Orleans on June 30-July 3. It’s now official: the Roots Picnic is expanding. The long running festival, which has been held in the band’s hometown of Philadelphia for the last nine years, will debut it’s inaugural New York City edition October 1 and 2 in New York’s Bryant Park. The event will be produced by Live Nation and Maverick in partnership with the Bryant Park Corporation and will be curated entirely by the Roots, with headliners that reflect the group’s extensive rolodex and penchant for the unexpected. The first night will feature a headlining jam with De Angelo and John Mayer, while the second night, billed as a love letter to NYC will be headlined by the entire Wu Tang Clan, David Byrne, and Nile Rodgers, all of whom will be backed by the Roots. Swizz Beatz, Jeremih, Kevin Gates, X Ambassadors, Trombone Shorty and EPMD are also slated to take the stage as well.