Mateo, photo credit:Ricky Richardson

*Los Angeles – BET made one giant step, of the music kind toward The Road To The BET Experience. Several thousand people were in attendance at the Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Mall, Saturday, May 31st for the start of this popular series of concerts.

This lively crowd could attest that Music Matter! A free star-studded Music Matters concert was held at the Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza Mall on the outdoor Promenade. The concert was the first of a series that takes place every Saturday, at 3PM from May 31st to June 21st, leading up to the BET Experience at L.A. LIVE presented by Coca-Cola, June 27-29, 2014.

The May 31st kick off concert featured a trio of R&B/soul crooners, Mateo, Adrian Marcel and Eric Bellinger. Nautica de la Cruz served as Mistress of Ceremonies, with DJ Paradise on the ones and two playing tracks that allowed the crowd to kick up their heels on this beautiful, sunny Southern California afternoon.

Mateo was the first to take the stage. He performed “Say It’s So” for his opening tune. A lucky member of the audience named Jessi was invited to the stage to be serenaded by Mateo on an improvised tune. Mateo concluded his set with “How Good Is Your Love,” which is receiving air play on KJLH Radio Free 102.3FM in Los Angeles.

Adrian Marcel brought the soulful sounds of the Bay area by way of Oakland to the festivities. The crowd sang along to his opening tune “Killa,” followed by “My Life,” and concluded with the crowd favorite “2AM.” Check out Adrian Marcel’s latest CD 7 Days A Week.

Adrian Marcel

Adrian Marcel, photo credit:Ricky Richardson

The crowd got their groove on while swaying and bopping to the grooves put down by Eric Bellinger. He performed “Double Entendre,” “I Don’t Want Her,” and “Do 4 Love,” amongst the gems performed to cap off a fantastic afternoon of Music that Matter.

Eric Bellinger

Eric Bellinger, photo credit:Ricky Richardson

Please visit for more information for the concert series The Road To The BET Experience. Click on the Facebook link to view photos from the series.

Visit for more information about the BET Awards 2014, BET Experience and BET FanFest.

The Road To The BET Experience served as the perfect bridge that segued unto the month of June. June is Black Music Month which celebrates the contributions of African Americans to all genres of music.

Ricky Richardson is a Southern California based writer, music reviewer and photographer. Contact him: [email protected].