Saturday, December 29, 2012

New music from YYou!

   I've covered this artist before and now he has more music for me. "Mad Mad Mad" is the first single off of his latest mixtape "House Of Hipster". The track adds a Hip Hop twist to the smash hit "Madness" by Muse.



   Mad Mad Mad has a really dark feel to it yet it is a great club song. The use of Muse's Madness was thoughtful. The, very distinctive, base line catches your attention and YYou's story keeps you listening. This is also reminiscent of the type of music N.E.R.D. makes. Taking an alternative rock song and adding a hip-hop twist is quite innovative. The track ends with a verse from the Muse track YYou drew inspiration from. I feel that it was an effective ending because the listener understands the original feeling of the track.


For more information on Yyou,
Website: www.yyoulives.com 
Twitter: www.twitter.com/yyoulives 
Youtube: www.youtube.com/Yyoulives 
Soundcloud: http://soundcloud.com/yyoulives

Friday, December 21, 2012

Don't Believe The Hype!

     I, with the help of some great friends, am currently working on a documentary. This film will showcase the lives of young artists living in New York City and challenge certain stereotypes, misconceptions, and stigmas attached to being an artist. In this, the film will show who we really are and what we do. I've just completed the 10 minute preview/teaser of some footage I've gotten over the past few months, basically to show what to expect from the finished product and Here it is:

Brooklyn Stories Semi-Finals

   25 poets went up against each other for the “Brooklyn Stories: Semi-finals,” a poetry slam competition that took place at the Brooklyn Public Library at Grand Army plaza, on Monday, December 10.

 The “Brooklyn Stories” competition was created by Tony award winning poet Lemon Andersen along with teen poetry organization Urban Word NYC to give youth poets the opportunity to share their stories about the borough in front of a large audience. The winners will win the chance to work with Lemon Anderson to create their own one man/woman shows of their Brooklyn stories, to be performed live on-stage at the new Barclays Center in Brooklyn.

Here's recap of the whole event:



   The seven winners were announced the following week and they are: Kearah-Armonie(ME!), Briannah Hagger, London Grant, Malcolm Wicks, Francine Hendrickson, Darren Arthur, and Nykemah Warren. I know all of the other winners and can't wait to work with and perform with them in February.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Meet Chris Wise!

    Chris Wise sees himself as a writer, an artist, a student, a teacher, and most of all an MC. One who has full control of his audience. “I do art,” Wise said. “Art is human expression”.
Wise believes that art is a form of self-expression and that it thrives when it communicates the truth. Art thrives when it shares stories, ideas, and feelings that are realistic and relatable. He feels he is a true artist as long as he shares his experience.

“As a conscious person, it’s my duty to elevate the consciousness of other people,” Wise said.

He uses the term conscious to describe his sense of self. Wise wants to affect the people who listen to his music, intellectually. To do this, his goal is to create a balance between education and entertainment. He remembers a quote said by record producer Clark Kent:
“It’s always going to be about the music, peace and love is cool but is your shit gonna bump?”

“People listen to the music for the music, the beat, the melody, and what makes them dance; not just the words or the message.” Wise said.

Wise’s biggest music influence are current upcoming artist such as Joey BadA$$, Dom Kennedy, and Curren$y. Curre$y has influenced Wise’s writing is that he does not think about rhyming.

“Just because it is a rap song does not mean it has to rhyme,” Wise said. “The artist should just tell their story.”

Wise hopes to make music that sells. He wants to make enough money to eat well, sleep well, travel, and to stay in his hometown, comfortably. “If it’s not forward, it’s backward,” Wise said. “Too late to be neutral.”

You can listen and download Chris Wise' EP "The Man" here:

Thursday, December 6, 2012

The "Friendzone" conundrum.

Men, boys, guys, fellas, etc. are always in control, when it comes to relationships.

That is why when a man sleeps around he's considerably a big shot and when a woman does the same thing she's considerably a hoe. When a man gets sexually involved with multiple women he is controlling several relationships, whereas if a woman is sexually involved with multiple men she is subjecting herself to multiple men.

 Duh.

 A lot of people don't realize that the "Friendzone" conundrum is strictly a male thing. I say male because I'm sure lions and tigers and bears do that shit too. When a man wants something he goes after it, even if that something is a human being with their own thoughts and feelings. While with most women, if we can't have the man we want, we don't want him at all. Or at least that's how I am because quite frankly I already have friends, none of which I want to have sex with.

 The only sad thing about the "Friendzone" conundrum is that it actually works. Men become "bestfriends" with the woman they want and remain that way for years. Eventually they ease their way in, becoming the closest person to that woman, and the woman falls in love with the man even though she didn't even blink twice at him when they first met.

 The analogy of men treating women like a vending machine that they can put nice coins in until sex falls out is literally the truest way I can explain this.

 Even on a smaller scale (I've been caught up too) where a guys approaches you and he's not a total creep so you talk to him and you give him your number just to be nice, then he calls every night having long conversations sounding oh-so concerned. Then about two weeks of this goes by, and one night he doesn't call you. So you decide to call him first because your nightly talks have already become routine. Next thing ya know YOU'RE calling him every night feeling like you need him and shit, though he wasn't even that cute to begin with. Just a month prior you had no idea who he was nor did you care. And now you're attached while he's off living his life.

 This is why romantic comedies ain't shit.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

The Photo

A 58-year-old New York City subway passenger was killed on Monday after he was pushed onto the tracks of an onrushing train in Manhattan by a man who had been mumbling to himself as he walked along the platform, The New York Times reported.

New York Police Department spokesman Paul Browne says investigators recovered security video showing a man fitting the description of the assailant working with street vendors near Rockefeller Center.

Police went there Tuesday and took him into custody. The victim, Ki-Suck Han, tried to climb back onto the platform after he was pushed, but did not make it; he was struck by a southbound R train in the 49th Street station. He was pronounced dead at St. Luke’s-Roosevelt Hospital, the Times report said.

The police released a brief video from a surveillance camera in which the attacker is seen and heard cursing at the victim and telling him to stand in line “and wait for the R train.”

Though this is a tragic story, one thing I would like to focus on is the fact that there was a photo of the man hanging off of there platform edge hanging on to his life. The reported works for the New York Post and the post used the photo for they're cover the following morning. This is probably the clearest indication of why journalists and reporters get a lot of hate. Instead of frantically trying to get help while a man is seconds from his death, you snap a photo for news. That is inhumane. This act, in a way, separates the news from real life. Real life would be getting help whereas "The news" is all about the news and a tragic accident is certainly news. Though the reported took the photo the Post as a corporation is responsible and wrong for printing the photo.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Teleport 2 me!

    Earlier this year KiD CuDi teamed up with his producer Dot Da Genius create a Rock n Roll inspired album entitled "WZRD". It can easily be said the stand-out track on the album was/is "Teleport 2 Me". A testimony of what's like to be lying in bed, missing someone and wishing they were there with you.

  I am one of the many who truly love this song and was extremely excited to see that the music video has leaked.



    This video is very close to what I imagined while listening to the song. One thing that I think is beautiful is how he is never laying on the bed but it is up on wall like a painting or TV screen. He's looking up at the bed almost admiring it and anticipating his "special someone"'s return. He also looks absolutely amazing in this video  I love it.

Friday, November 16, 2012

David Petraeus Scandal!

I guess this would be my political post for the month.

    David Howell Petraeus is a retired American military officer and public official. He served as Director of the Central Intelligence Agency from September 6, 2011, until his resignation on November 9, 2012, due to an extramarital affair he had, which was reportedly discovered in the course of an FBI investigation and made public. Professionally, Petraeus is a respectable man. Though having an affair while still married is wrong, that is no reason for a man to step down from his own job. David Petraeus did not betray this nation; he only betrayed his wife and deserves his job back.

    Petraeus’ served more than 37 years in the Army and became the director of the CIA after serving as Commander of United States Central Command, which required him to oversee the military efforts in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Central Asia, the Arabian Peninsula and Egypt. Furthermore, has a very long list of impressive recognitions. In 2007, TIME magazine named him one of the 100 most influential leaders and revolutionaries of the year; he was on GQ magazine’s list of The 50 Most Powerful People in Washington in 2012; and The Association of Special Operations Professionals named Petraeus as its 2011 Man of the Year. The man Petraeus is, professionally, shows that he has done nothing to leave his job. Petraeus may not be a “good husband” but he is certainly good at what he has done for this nation and his stepping down is a major loss. This is supported in the New York Daily News article: David Petraeus deserves his CIA job back”. In the article, the writer describes the situation, states their opinion, and gives examples of similar stories. The article states “The list of Washington sex scandals is long and, really, quite distinguished. One would have to include John F. Kennedy and, just to be fair, Thomas Jefferson. I want to mention Warren Harding, a randy devil he, and Dwight D. Eisenhower, whose wartime affair with his driver, Capt. Kay Summersby, has long been alleged. Lyndon Johnson’s affairs have been documented by the indefatigable Robert Caro – and were all but conceding by the weary Lady Bird Johnson. These matters can hurt.”

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Outfit of the week

This was my outfit for Paint and Poetry, a showcase that brings together artists of all kinds for an art showcase of visual art and spoken word. This look was thrown together, it’s that simple! I’ve worn his cropped sweater before, it just a sweater I bought from the 99 cent store and cut myself. I’m wearing my favorite high waisted shorts and brand new houndstooth tights from macy’s. The sneakers are also a great edition to this look. They’re platform sneakers that look like converses, from Forever 21. I felt like this look is very "Clarissa Explains it All"/90's inspired.




Tuesday, November 13, 2012

4th annual Youth Poet Laureate Slam

   The New York City Youth Poet Laureate (YPL) program is a voting-themed teen competition designed to energize youth voters through spoken word poetry, all put together by Urban Word NYC and NYC Votes. The program is open to students, ages 16-19. The finalist were a group of poets who submitted a resume of all community service they've done along with a poetry portfolio. These 12 finalist competed at the Schomburg Library in Harlem for title of NYC's 2013 Youth Poet Laureate.

  The night began with 2012's YPL, Ish Islam, performing a piece along with fellow poet Naajidah. The host was poet/songstress Shanelle Gabriel. Then the poetry began. Each poet performed a 3 minute piece in the first round and then a 1 minute political poem in the second round. The night was filled with pieces about school, family, health, and of course politics. For all performances: http://www.youtube.com/user/TimothyDuWhite

Now the winners:

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Paint and Poetry vol. 9!

   Paint and Poetry: A collective effort of all things art, presented by Mojo Disco. Paint and Poetry brings together artists of all kinds for an art showcase of visual art and spoken word. We listen, we admire, we mingle, and we love.(photos below)




    Last night's P&P was the 9th event of the series and did not disappoint. The event was held at the 3rdeye(Sol)ation art gallery in Brooklyn, where it has been held before. The complete ambiance was comforting. When my best friend and I arrived people were just piling in. We got some food, chatted, and took photos while DJ SI was on the one's and two's. Of course, I had to give props to the DJ. In between spoken word performances he had everyone jammin and just feeling good with the best Hip Hop tracks from the early 90's to now.

   Before the poetry was perfect time to admire the "Paint" aspect of this event. There were paintings all over the walls done by various artists. These paintings incorporated themes such as love, culture, and music. Each piece of artwork fit into the vibe of the whole event perfectly.

    Now, let's get to the poetry. Last night's event seemed to be a male dominated night, but nonetheless the talent still shone through  The spoken word segment showcased our up and coming Poets/MCs, such as Ronnie Brown, Chris Wise, and Sha Summers. They all had something important to say as well as entertaining lyrics. There was an intermission, which gave opportunity for more mingling, networking, photo taking, dancing, and fun. Not to mention D.Lacy was giving hand massages as form of relaxation therapy the whole night.

Ashley August and I



Ali Esteem getting a hand massage

Mojo Disco and Ashley August






For more photos click HERE

Friday, November 2, 2012

How to wrap your hair at night!

    Last year I made this video but the advice I gave wasn't ideal for everyone. SO here's another demonstrative video on how to wrap your Senegalese Twists/Protective style at night!


New Track from Big Boi, featuring Kelly Rowland

   New music! Big Boi releases newest single “Mama told me”, featuring Kelly Rowland. The track is the first single off Big Boi’s highly anticipated  album “Vicious Lies and Dangerous Rumors”.


    The 6 time Grammy award winner reaches back to the late 80’s and early 90’s era with a smooth Pop and R&B feel, with “Mama Told Me”. Kelly Rowland’s voice on the chorus is very sultry and reminiscent of Janet Jackson. The beat is simple yet effective and of course Big Boi is as great a lyricist as ever. This track is ideal for every audience, whether or not you are aware of Big Boi’s reputation in the rap industry.

    The track is amazing, and I am certainly looking forward to hearing the new album. Check out more of my review [HERE]

Hoe?

   A word use to described someone(most commonly a woman) who is extremely promiscuous. But I feel that words like "hoe" are made for people to separate themselves from people who do things they don't approve of. Without certain words we are all thrown in the same category.
    Simplistically, if my little sister is playing in mud and I don't approve of this I'm gonna call her "Silly" for doing that. I don't consider myself silly so that separates me from people like her.

    So many people now-a-days try to stop bullying but don't realize that we're all bullies. We all judge. Especially high school kids. You know how many slurs and other bad words these kids use against each other on the regular?! & then that's brought into adulthood, it's a vicious cycle of disrespecting one another. What we all really need is eloquence.

     A Prime example of Adult Bullies who lack eloquence is "The Bad Girls Club". A reality TV show which gets a bad rep for exploiting young women who don't know how to act. Basically the show puts 9 self proclaimed "Bad" women in a house to live together for about four months and they act wild. They go to the clubs and get into fights. They grow to dislike and fight each other and there is always a separation. Despite all the wrong doing these women do, almost all their arguments are sprinkled with "You're a hoe" "You're a slut" "Close your legs" and other similar statements. It is appalling that a woman can be SO concerned with another woman's sex life but it seems that's how we are. (Lets focus on Americans, because I don't know about other countries.) We attack others for doing things we don't like or approve of. It's silly but almost second nature to be angry with someone because of their life choice(s) which clearly don't effect the person getting mad at all, whatsoever. This is bullying.

    So, if you've ever called someone a hoe, I've got news for you: You're a BULLY. Cut it out! It starts at home. We can't change the world unless we change ourselves.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

The Baddest Witch!

This Halloween was my 20th birthday and my costume is my outfit of the week. I dressed up as a witch! As I’ve been doing for many Halloweens, I wore my own clothes and a few accessories. I went for a subtly sexy gothic look. Black, Lace, and feminine. I topped the look off with a $3 witch hat from the family dollar. Of course me nails, hair, and make-up made this look 100%. I spent my 20th with my family due to a Hurricane Sandy, it was great. My best friend came over, dressed as the Easter bunny, and we went trick-or-treating. We then came back home for some birthday cake, gift opening  and good vibes. Overall it was a great day.




My best friend, Ali Esteem, as a bunny and I


Our Halloween candy.

My Birthday cake.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Zoe Saldana as Nina Simone?!

You may have heard rumors but it's real.
 






     The first images of Zoe Saldana on the set of the Nina Simone biopic are surfacing and here she is wearing an afro wig:


     I am appalled at the fact that they are going through with this. Nina Simone was a dark skinned Black woman. Zoe Saldana is a fair skinned Latino woman. You can argue that Zoe is black and bring up diaspora all you want but that fact is: she looks nothing like Nina. Not only is the appearance wrong, but Zoe Saldana is NOT a singer. What can she possibly bring to this role? Not trying to dis-credit her acting but she is clearly a misrepresentation of Nina Simone, without even considering her roles in "Drumline" and "Columbiana".

    Lets look at other bio-pics such as "Notorious" and "The Jacksons: and American dream". The actor who played Biggie, Jamal Woolard, and the actor who played Micheal, Wylie Draper, were both young actors who had never been in big name films BUT resembled who they were portraying. Therefore there is no excuse for this casting.

   Instead of putting a light skinned girl in awkward make-up and an even more awkward wig, let's cast an actual dark-skinned woman with actual coarse hair, They do exist.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Quote

Rare is the union of Beauty and Purity
                                                          -Juvenal

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

The Urban Twist

    About two months ago my friends and I took part in a photo shoot by the Brooklyn Bridge. The photographer is named Travis Fraser. The theme of this shoot was Hip-Hop, all meanings of the word Urban. Here are a few shots:








You can see more photos from this shoot HERE

GMH

Here's a sappy GMH story but truthful and concise.

    I was on the C train heading home the other day and two high school boys got on the train. They were both little "Hood" and went on to have a conversation discussing gangs. They were talking about rules and being crip and other non sense. Then one of the boys says to the other something along the lines of "F*ck that S#!t !, It's corny". In my mind I said "Yaaaaas". He went on to say "Go to college, get an education; When I come back, I'm gonna drive through the hood and laugh at these Niggas on the streets".

   I was pleasantly surprised by his revelation, I almost shed a year. I think that was mostly because of my own judgement from the second they got on the train, but he proved me wrong. His friend asked him what school he would want to go to, he said either BMCC or a school upstate, which isn't very specific. But in my eyes, it doesn't matter where you begin. I have tons of friends who have gotten/are getting they're associates degree and are moving on to bigger and better things. I almost never here these inner city high school boys talk about college, it was refreshing. Hopefully he can convince the friend he was talking to as well as all his other peers to go to college. and then they will teach younger generations. and then community college will never be an option.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Outfit of the week

     Of course, My outfit from Saturday. It was a great day to go out and enjoy Brooklyn. At noon was the Restoration rocks Music Festival in Bed-Stuy and later that evening was First Saturdays at The Brooklyn Museum. Both very fun, cultural, artistic events. My best friend and I didn't have to travel far. My biggest inspiration for this outfit was the weather. It was rainy and chilly all week but this day was beautiful, perfect Fall weather. So I wore my favorite sweater, favorite shorts, and favorite boots. The socks added for style. I realized that this look had a bit of a vintage vibe. The sweater is vintage, the high-waisted shorts, and grunge-like boots(which is why I used the word hipster). Again, “retro” was not my intention but this look came out great.






First Saturdays!

  The music festival is not where loving Brooklyn's culture ended for us. Ali and I headed to the Brooklyn Museum for their First Saturdays event, sponsored by Target.
    At the Brooklyn Museum's Target First Saturdays, thousands of visitors enjoy free programs of art and entertainment each month from 5 to 11 p.m. All evening long, the Museum CafĂ© serves a wide selection of sandwiches, salads, and beverages, and a cash bar offers wine and beer. Parking is a flat rate of $5 starting at 5 p.m. All other Saturdays, the Museum closes at 6 p.m.

   This month's theme was the 1970's. There were several shows, arts and crafts, and 70's music playing throughout the museum. We arrived around 8pm, walked around the museum, took photos, and did some arts and crafts. At 9pm was the 1970's fashion show. The show included soulful dancers, beautiful women dressed in their funkiest threads and largest afros. The host and star of the shows was the beautiful Raye 6(http://raye6.com/). Raye 6 hosted the restoration Rocks festival last year and is an extraordinary talent. She sang a few Soul classics, and has an amazing voice. They also allowed audience members, who were dressed accordingly, to walk the runway and dance a bit. It was very fun. Here are some photos we took:

Our Host, Raye 6
Soul Dancer
DJ Hi Maintenance
Soul Dancer
Soul Dancer
Trae Harris
Audience Member
Raye 6 with a young audience member

Soul dancers
Soul Dancers
A talk-back wall which allowed visitors to explore their representations of beauty
    Overall, this night was amazing. There were beautiful Black people everywhere. It was my first time at First Saturdays and a wonderful experience.

The 6th annual Restoration Rocks Music Festival

   This past Saturday was the music festival hosted by Restoration Plaza in Bed-Stuy Brooklyn. You can see my coverage of last year's festival here.
    This years headliners were Brand Nubian and MC Lyte. They both did a great job. As well as the other performers. Just like last year's event, the streets were lined with vendors selling food, jewelry, clothes, and more. The best part about the street fair aspect is that everyone was from Brooklyn. Everyone's shop/store/organization was located within blocks of the festival. Of course, the artists were all Brooklynites and it was a great day to be proud of who we are and where we come from. 
    I spent the whole day with my best friend, who lives in Bed-Stuy, and we took a lot of photos:

Me, street fair

one of the tables



Brand Nubian

Brand Nubian

MC Lyte!!

MC Lyte

My Best Friend Ali Esteem and I

    Like I said the music was good. There was more of a variety this year, whereas last year was 100% Hip-Hop. Brand Nubian performed their biggest hits(only two of which I recognized) and the whole crowed of 30+ year old black folk was jammin'. MC Lyte's set was relatively short but she also did her best songs and best verses, which included "Rough Neck", "I wanna be down", and "Self-Destruction".

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