Thursday, May 19, 2016

Chance 3 is HERE

     The long anticipated 3rd solo project from Chi-town's very own Chance The Rapper. He stole the heart of many just 3 years ago with his 2nd mixtape and breakthrough project "Acid Rap"(which I reviewed). Since Chance has seen greater success than any other independent artist, solely based on a mixtape, and has remained to work as an independent artist. No record label, No contract, in better terms His property is his property. Chance has also continued to bless us with free music. Though the release of Chance 3, actually titled "Coloring Book", prompted listeners to purchase apple music memberships(if they had not already done so after the release of "Views") in order to download the album, it was available to stream on his SoundCloud for a short time.


    This album is Acid Rap now grown up and sober, it is Surf's first cousin, the house Ultra Light Beam grew up in; It upbeat Hip-Hop Gospel. Coloring Book is fun and just as envelope pushing Chance has always been. This use of various instrumentation has always been present in The Rapper's work, and now the use of a choir backing the majority of his music is a useful tool. This tape is a great listen start to finish, but unfortunately falls short. It is beautiful but not as jaw-droppingly impressive as what grabbed our attentions from he beginning, Acid Rap. Acid Rap is possibly the greatest contemporary mixtape of our time. It did A LOT for Chance, and for Hip-Hop music and it is still a great listen start to finish. It is wonderful however to see his growth from 3 years ago to now, not just musically but spiritually, mentally, and emotionally through the music as well as the lyrics and message. Standout tracks include the intro(which ain't an intro but in fact and entree) "All We Got" featuring none other than KanYe West, followed by "No Problems" featuring Lil Wayne and 2 Chainz, and my personal favorite, "Same Drugs". Give it a listen if you haven't already !

How I do my dark lipstick using LimeCrime

I made this cute little video via SnapChat. Enjoy !


Tuesday, May 3, 2016

This new Drake album

Views, formerly know as Views from the 6, was released via Apple Music(Apple's latest streaming service) on April 29th, 2016.



     Mr. Graham hit us off with the 90's samples, his befitting desire to sing as well as Aaliyah, and his  signature simple yet catchy lyrics. Ofcourse fully equipped with our favorite unhealthy relationship ideals, with controlling statements and gas lighting. Ultimately, Drake created a Drake album. Has he outdone himself? ehhh, let's just say he's... done himself... again. This is the same old song, just more 2016, and production that is a tad bit more exquisite and offers more variety musically. This man is pulling from reggae, house, pop, bounce music and more. It is catchy. It is something to get us through the day, and all the way in our feelings, however it falls short. I'll give it a 3.5 out of 5 and wait for the next big celebrity to drop some heat in what seems to be a very fruitful year for hip-hop.

Monday, April 25, 2016

Beyoncé done did it again!


     Hit us with another surprise, visual album. In the form of a world premiere event on HBO. Unlike the BEYONCÉ all the videos apart of the newest release flow together as a short film a musical of sorts strung together with poetry, written by Warsan Shire, recited by Queen Bey herself. It is called Lemonade, and it has changed the world. This film is about love and all love truly is, from the perspective of a Black Woman. She incorporates er culture, where she is from and her family. Though being a reflection of Bey's personal life, this film is for all of us Black Women.
To watch and listen, it is available on Tidal and iTunes.

 Here is the perfect description I could find:

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

4/20 is NOT Bob Marley Day

4/20, April 20th, is the unofficial official celebration of marijuana. Everyone smokes weed and gets high, people have parties and celebrations, it is a real holiday for many. On this day the very hip very current Snapchat app, which allows users to post photos and videos that expire after 24 hours with cool filters and graphics, added a Bob Marley filter. The filter is apart their newest filters which use face scanning technology to distort one's face or make it look as if they are wearing something(a cool headdress, make-up, etc.) while using the front facing camera. The Bob Marley filter makes user's faces look like Bob Marley's complete with brown skin and long locks. Unfortunately, the musical legend known for making Reggae music a global phenomenon with island beats and lyrics that encouraged peace, love, and social justice, is often only recognized for his use of Marijuana these days. Bob Marley os also known for popularizing the Rastafari culture which was thriving in Jamaica around the height of his success. Rastafarian people take part in smoking marijuana, or ganja, or weed, as part of their spirituality. Marley's image has been used and exploited in Marijuana materials all over the U.S., and I see it as inappropriate. Especially when those taking part do not know much of reggae music or the impact Bob Marley made on the world, only that he is somebody who used to get high. This snapchat filter is shameful, disrespectful, extremely distasteful, and racially as well as culturally offensive. It's a damn shame.

 To learn more about Bob Marley and the origin of The Rastafari movement I strongly suggest watching the Documentary "Marley". Watch the trailer here:

All that's wrong with Harriet Tubman being the new face of the U.S. $20 bill

    The news just broke about an hour ago, the Treasury Secretary Jack Lew announced that it is official Harriet Tubman will replace Andrew Jackson on the 20 dollar bill(source). Rumors buzzed about this possibility last year and in response I wrote this spoken word piece:

 

     Today people are rejoicing, however my I still feel as strongly as I felt about this as I did when I wrote the poem above. Harriet Tubman on the $20 is problematic. As we all know Harriet Tubman was enslaved along with millions of Blacks in America. She is know for freeing hundreds of enslaved people by leading them up north(parts of which slavery was abolished) using a system called the underground railroad. What people often overlook is that she also continued to fight for human rights while free which included her being a big part of the Women's suffrage movement. She was beat down for years by slave owners to the point where she suffered chronic headaches, seizures, insomnia, and more. What exactly can her image on the very money she was sold for do about that? She had bounties on her for thousands of dollars and still fought for freedom and equality, risking her life every step of the way. This capitalist system was built against Harriet Tubman and against all of us. POC, Black People, are still oppressed by the country's system despite no longer being "slaves". Black people still suffer from results of slavery, racism is still very much alive and White people still reap the benefits of that. Putting Harriet Tubman face on our currency seems to show some sort of recognition but truthfully it is not helping. What would help would be taking off all of the now present faces on our dollar bills for they are all white men responsible for the invasion of other countries, enslavement of innocents people, unnecessary wars, corrupt policies, and the foundation of our flawed capitalism and hypocritical government systems; among many other things. Instead a printing a photograph, the U.S. should actually give descendants of enslaved Africans their reparations. Harriet Tubman had vision, she believed in something and fought for it, at this point that fight is not yet won.

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Outfit of the week ft. new Loc Jewelry !

    This week is the official unofficial kick off to spring as we are experiencing 70 degree weather all week. My look includes a BDG striped cropped sweater and the BDG Black High rise seam jean from Urban outfitters. Finished off with Sam Edelman slip on shoes, also from Urban. I complete this look with a denim jacket for when the temperature drops later on. 







Also joining this week's fashion post is a spotlight on my new loc jewelry. Courtesy of K's Loc Jewels. You can purchase these two pieces and so many more at http://kslocjewels.etsy.com/



Friday, April 15, 2016

"The Birth of a Nation" Trailer has been released



 Written, directed, produced by, and starring Nate Parker; The Birth of A Nation chronicles the story of Nat Turner and is set to wow audiences this October.

Monday, March 28, 2016

New CuDI !

     My beloved Scott Mescudi dropped a surprise new single via Soundcloud this weekend. Entitled "The Frequency", this track is the slow, trippy, psychedelic CuDi we're used to. Is this Man on The Moon III material?, at this point man I hope so. But Scott hits us off with good music nonetheless, always staying true to himself.


The problem with #ICanBeBoth

     The newest trend sweeping the internet invites Black Women to stand up for and represent themselves by posting photos with the hashtag. #ICanBeBoth is to debunk the ever long good girl vs. bad girl mindset forced upon women for centuries, especially Black Women. This idea pits the Bad girl/hoe/slut against the good girl/school girl/good christian woman; as if there are only two types of women.


     People have participated by posting either a split photo or two photos, one of which would be of said poster wearing something "sexy" or more revealing, probably going out to a club looking presumably promiscuous and the other would be of the same woman dressed to go to work, or school, or church, etc. looking presumably conservative and/or educated.
     #ICanBeBoth is the newest feminist movement. We as women, all women, are multidimensional and free to express ourselves how we want, and we have a right to that freedom without being policed or restricted by other people's perception of how a woman should live her life on the basis of misogyny and patriarchy.

     However, I see it to be flawed. Firstly, the hashtag itself implies that there is indeed  a "both". This supports the whole "Good girl/Bad girl" discourse, validating it as a way to categorize lifestyle and styles of clothing as personality traits. Good girl wears white, bad girl wears black, good girl either shows cleavage, mid-drift, or legs(not all); bad girl does not "leave anything to the imagination", good girl wears stockings, bad girl wears fishnets with rips and tears in them; etc. etc. As far a fashion is concerned, aside from the person, there are no essential good girl/bad girl styles, trends, or stores; therefore no way or no reason to narrow it down. They are JUST CLOTHES. Now, considering the person, unless they are living a double life there is no "both" they can possibly be; they can only be one person. Personally, weather I wear an oversized crewneck sweater with skinny jeans and a pair of Chucks; or Doc Marten boots with fishnet stockings, high wasted ripped shorts, and a small cropped tank top; or long Black high-neck dress that emphasizes my booty; OR a flannel shirt with a knit sweater over it, blue jeans, and boots with a little heel; I am still me. I am one person, who has a job in a professional setting, a job in a more relaxed setting, someone who is a matriculated student, and someone who likes to go out at night and have fun. There are not several sides to me that fit into categories dictated by the male gaze, I am me. Upon getting dressed I do not say to myself, "Tonight I am wearing a short, tight dress, I am sexy." or "Today I am wearing a fitted blazer paired with fitted slacks, I am a career women". I dress appropriately for the occasion, not as if I am a Barbie doll who is conservative by day and slut by night, but because this is who I am as a multidimensional human being.
     I have taken into consideration that my problem is mostly with the hashtag itself. The notion is a good one but the whole "I can be both" or "Get you a girl who can do both" discourse has to be done with. In response to one who states they can be both, I would ask "Both what?". I am curious to know what labels they put on themselves.

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