Tuesday, December 15, 2009
There are very few artists who can put out an album every nine years or so, and still have people breathlessly anticpating their next project. Sade is one of those people, and on Monday night, she held a listening party for her latest, "Soldier of Love," which is due out on Feb. 8. I had the opportunity to talk with her briefly after listening to the music, which is classic Sade. Look up her new single, the title track, out now.
Thursday, December 10, 2009
I got the chance to see Corinne Bailey Rae on Thursday night at Joe's Pub as she performed songs from her new album, "The Sea," out next month. I was surprised by how strong and soaring her voice was _ her mellow singing on the album masks her powerful voice. The new material is hot!
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Monday, December 7, 2009
If you listen to Chris Brown's "Graffiti" in a vacuum, you will hear a solid, entertaining album, with a good balance of pillow talk, club grooves, heartfelt ballads and swagger anthems. The problem is, it's not great enough to make you forget about the elephant in the room.
Tuesday, November 17, 2009
Thursday, November 5, 2009
Wednesday, November 4, 2009
Monday, November 2, 2009
Typically I spend Thanksgiving evening unfastening my top button and catching some football, but now, I have another option! Beyonce is doing a Thanksgiving night special _ is this her "This Is It"? LOL ... check it out!
Saturday, October 24, 2009
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
Monday, October 19, 2009
Saturday, August 29, 2009
I knew Taylor Swift had loads of talent as a songwriter and a singer, but I had never seen her perform so I didn't know what to expect from the 19-year-old when I checked her out at Madison Square Garden. All I can say afterward is ... wow. She can really command a crowd, and her stage presence will only grow considering she's just 19. And the screams for her were deafening ... I still haven't recovered! This is a pic I took of her in full Sasha Fierce mode. LOL
Tuesday, August 25, 2009
I gotta say, Ghostface is one of the most consistently good rappers out there ... he tells tales from the street without trying to glorify anything, he just seems real. He can also do tender (to a point), as this video shows. Raheem DeVaughn is in it too! Check it out!
Wednesday, August 12, 2009
Monday, August 10, 2009
Monday, June 29, 2009
I've interviewed just about everyone in the game in the music business, from Madonna to Prince to Beyonce to Dolly Parton to Jay-Z, but the one person I've always wanted to talk to was Michael Jackson. It was partly because of course he is _ or was (sorry, it's hard to get used to talking in the past tense about MJ) _ the world's greatest and most complex entertainer. But also, I was a huge fan. Not in the sense that I blindly saw MJ as a god, but really connected with him and believed in his magic.
So it was with a heavy heart that last week, I found myself working on his obituary. I really can't believe he is gone. Michael Jackson has informed my entire life with his music, and been such a focal point for things outside of music. He was so much more than the soundtrack to our lives.
I went to his parents' house the other day and snapped this picture of the growing memorial to him; it's still so surreal.
Here's a link to my appreciation of one of othe most unique characters to ever grace this planet.
Monday, June 8, 2009
Thursday, June 4, 2009
That might be a little bit unfair, actually ... Even though Crosby Loggins is the son of pop-soul man Kenny Loggins, he's got his own sound apart from his dad. And he showcased it this week at a showcase at Pop Burger in midtown Manhattan.
In front of a small group of journalists and an acoustic guitar, Loggins performed a few songs (including a weird one about a dog getting shot, which thankfully is not on his upcoming debut album).
Crosby talked about working with people like Brett Dennen and John Mayer, and recording the CD, "A Time To Move, which is out July 14.
Here's a few pics I took while he was performing. Enjoy!
Monday, June 1, 2009
I wish his verse on the "Ego" remix was as good as this, but of course, you can't win them all, as Lebron James knows ...
Wednesday, May 27, 2009
AP: These days, are you less likely to date someone in the public eye? (Swift had a public romance and breakup with Joe Jonas.)
Swift: When I'm thinking about going on a date with some guy or considering liking him, it really doesn't matter what they do or how that affects my career. ... When you strategize a relationship too much, like, "We're not gonna be public about it, and we're gonna say this in interviews," when you think it all out, I think that complicates the relationship and I think that's unfair for the relationship. I don't look for boyfriends, I don't really scour the awards shows for who I'm going to date (laughs), but I think love happens when you're not looking for it, and when it happens, I'm not going to be the one to overthink it.
Check out the entire article with this link below, and enjoy the "White Horse" video!
Tuesday, May 19, 2009
I may be a bit naive but I am really hoping that Michael Jackson's historic shows in London will not only actually happen, but be so amazing that people finally start remembering him for his music than for all his baggage. This rehearsal tour video is promising ... but I don't think I saw MJ dancing in it. We shall see.
Friday, May 15, 2009
Thursday, May 14, 2009
It's hard to believe that it's been 20 years since Lenny Kravitz released his first album. Back then, he was known as that dude who was married to Lisa Bonet. Oh, how 20years changes things!
Here's a link to an interview I did with him recently about "Let Love Rule," which is being re-released on its anniversary. And enjoy the video blast from the past!
Monday, May 11, 2009
OK this is late as well, but, you know Ciara's CD dropped last week, and she was on Saturday Night Live this weekend as well, grooving and shaking it. "Fantasy Ride" hit a lot of turblence before it was released, with its date being pushed back again and again, but as CiCi told me recently, she thinks now is the best time for the CD's release.
Check out my pic of her and the interview I did below. :)
Thursday, May 7, 2009
Forgive the lateness on this, I've been pretty sick! I blame hanging out too late at concerts for bringing it on, but in the case of India.Arie, it was worth it.
She performed at the Manhattan center last Friday, and was just amazing. It's pretty sad that she's becoming less and less mainstream the deeper into her career ... someone reminded me that it wasn't that long ago that she was headlining at Radio City ... now she's performing for like, 2000 peeps, if that.
Well, the general public is missing out, because India.Arie's music remains as powerful as ever. She performed songs of her latest CD, "Testimony, Vol. 2: Love & Politics," as well as songs from her other great CDs, including hits like "Video," "Brown Skin" and "I Am Not My Hair." She even caused a frenzy when she went into the crowd to sing!
Check out pics from the show!
Friday, May 1, 2009
It's hard to think of someone more revered as not only a great musician but a great person in music than Pete Seeger.
The folk singer known for popularizing "We Shall Overcome" and writing songs like "Turn, Turn, Turn" turns 90 on Sunday, and the momentous occasion is being marked by a blowout, all-star concert at Madison Square Garden. I recently talked to Pete Seeger over the phone, and he was delightful to talk to.
Check out this story I wrote about it, and enjoy this clip from him singing with Bruce Springsteen during the Obama inauguration festivities.
Wednesday, April 29, 2009
There are certain people who are so beloved that just the mere mention of their name elicits excitement and giddiness from their disciples. There's Prince, MJ, Sade ... and Maxwell. Now, I know Maxwell might not be in the same league to some, but he has a huge, dedicated following _ and that was demonstrated by the reception he had to announce his new album, "BLACKsummers'night." It's supposed to be coming out in July _ it will be his first CD in nine years.
There were all kinds of media folks in there, as well as random folks like Melyssa Ford, New York Giants' player Antonio Pierce and even former Met Dwight Gooden (the biggest questionmark of all attendees).
Maxwell didn't sing, but he did answer some questions. Check out the video I took above where he talks about him taking a break. It was a fun event!
Monday, April 27, 2009
'Cause god knows I was picked on like crazy as a kid. And yet, I have no musical talent. So why is it that Prince became a genius after getting teased when he was little? Maybe that's why he's Prince and I'm me ... anyway, his Purple Badness explains how being bullied made him a strong artist in this clip from tonight's Tavis Smiley show, which airs on PBS. Check it out ...
Sunday, April 26, 2009
Sasha Fierce dominated the box office this weekend with "Obsessed"! The "Fatal Attraction" knock off did about $28 million and was the most popular movie in the country.
Now I am sure you all know that "Obsessed" didn't rate well in critics' eyes ... in fact, if you check Rottentomatoes.com, it shows that most critics pummeled this flick. But who cares about critics? I saw the movie and it was so much fun. Is it glorified Lifetime flick? Yes? Is it over the top and campy? Yes and yes. But I think Beyonce and everyone is in on the joke, and have delivered a mindlessly entertaining flick that's a complete guilty pleasure. Check it out, you will have fun!
Friday, April 24, 2009
Monday, April 20, 2009
I talked to Beyonce last month and she dished about why she doesn't twitter, that infamous fall and why she wasn't scared of no Etta James (LOL!). Above is a snippet of my video interview and this link is to the print interview.
Tuesday, April 14, 2009
I recently checked out this movie, and I have to say it was amazing. It's a very well made film about a true case in Texas where almost half a town was locked up on drug charges; the cases were eventually thrown out. This movie tells the story through the eyes of a young mother, played by Nicole Beharie. She's a Julliard grad and a newcomer who really sets the screen ablaze in this movie. It also stars Alfre Woodard, Charles Dutton, and Xzibit.
Go check this one out, it's so worth it.
Monday, April 13, 2009
Thursday, April 9, 2009
Had a great interview with Stevie Nicks last month ... here's snippets of the video, and below is a link to the story I wrote. Really cool to talk to. :) The CD/DVD is also really cool, so you might want to check it out (and remember what she says, don't steal! LOL!)
Tuesday, April 7, 2009
Tuesday, March 31, 2009
The pop superstar also took her 3-year-old adopted son, David, to meet his biological father for the first time since he left Malawi in 2006. She and David later visited the orphanage in Mchinji, a village near the Zambian border, where he once lived.
"Madonna is committed to maintaining an ongoing relationship with David's Malawian roots," said Liz Rosenberg in a statement Tuesday morning.
Friday, March 27, 2009
Thursday, March 26, 2009
In an interview in Malawi's leading daily The Nation, the singer said she was considering another adoption but would only do it if she had "the support of the Malawian people and government."
Wednesday, March 25, 2009
Thursday, March 12, 2009
Chrisette Michelle is coming out with a new CD, "Ephiphany," later this month, and to preview it and hype it up, she performed at the Canal Room at a packed party hosted by Def Jam Chairman L.A. Reid. Chrisette won a Grammy and earned a gold album for her debut CD about a year or so ago, and is getting buzz with this one ... Check the video for her new song. And enjoy my pictures!
People can't get enough of Chris Brown, these days, but unfortunately for him, they're more interested in following the scandal surrounding his arrested for allegedly beating Rihanna than his actual music. He had to bow out of Nickelodeon's Kids' Choice Awards yesterday because of the firestorm and word has it T-Pain is recording a new version of "Freeze" without Brown in it.
But a lot of people are riding Rihanna for reuniting with Chris.
This is part of an article I wrote on the whole saga yesterday:
¶ Rihanna may endure a challenging road herself whenever she finally decides to relaunch her equally white-hot career. Already, she had seen her image transformed from pop's femme fatale to domestic violence victim whose decision to go back to her alleged attacker has been endlessly called into question.
¶ "What I think the caution is she has is not to let this incident define her. And I think that's the biggest risk to her career," said Bragman.
¶ An apparent reconciliation with Brown may only exacerbate that risk. Rap mogul Diddy confirmed he let the couple use his home to "talk about a situation they're in," and producer Polow da Don told the Los Angeles Times he was working with both stars on a duet (however, People.com, citing sources it did not name, said the couple has not yet recorded a duet that was penned for them to be included on Brown's new album.)
¶ "I think people are critical of her, saying, 'Oh my god, you're crazy, what are you doing?" said Cori Murray, entertainment editor for Essence magazine. "Then there are people who are like ... they don't want to pass judgment on her because they don't know the whole situation."
I've included a link to the whole article. It's a mess and it keeps on growing.
Tuesday, March 10, 2009
Monday, March 9, 2009
... she know she don't know nothing 'bout cornrowing a dude's head!! And she knows she would never let a pit bull inside her mansion in real life! I know this video with The-Dream is trying to prove that she's a down chick, but chill, Mariah _ you don't have to prove your cred anymore! We got you, girl!!!
Friday, March 6, 2009
¶ NEW YORK (AP) _ Would Kanye West be willing to give Anoop Desai a shot in the studio?
¶ Desai, a contestant on "American Idol," is hoping to meet West _ and talk about a future collaboration _ when West makes his first trip to the top-rated Fox series, performing his hit "Heartless" during Wednesday's elimination show.
¶ On this week's wild card round, Desai snagged the last spot _ lucky No. 13 _ in the finals.
¶ The 22-year-old college student from Chapel Hill, N.C., would appreciate style advice from West.
¶ "I'm definitely going to pick his brain _ we'll see if he has anything to lend me too," joked Desai, who loves R&B music and got the "Idol" audience moving with his performance of Bobby Brown's "My Prerogative."
Thursday, March 5, 2009
This from the AP story on Thursday:
"This is it," Jackson said in a brief statement punctuated by the squeals of fans who gathered inside the massive O2 Arena in southeast London on Thursday. "And when I say this is it, I mean this is it."
Somehow, I doubt "it." Performers never stop performing until they're dead. But a Jackson performance is still a huge deal, so ... I may be making plans to go across the pond this summer.
Wednesday, March 4, 2009
Britney Spears' first tour in five years is officially titled "The Circus" tour, but it really could be called the "Rehabilitation Project," because it's yet another attempt to rebuild the image and career of the former pop queen.
So far she has a platinum-plus album with "Circus" and at least two hit singles, but how did she do as far as her performance? Well, it looks like it was a good effort, but not great.
Here's a sampling of the reviews:
People's Chuck Arnold wrote:
Don't call it a comeback quite yet. Britney Spears still isn't all the way there. At least not from the standpoint of the kickoff concert of her much-anticipated Circus tour – her first trek in five years – at the New Orleans Arena Tuesday night. While she avoided the train wreck that was her 2007 MTV Video Music Awards appearance, a visibly nervous Spears, performing in front of enthusiastic fans near her Kentwood, La., hometown, never really hit her old stride.
The Los Angeles' Times' Ann Powers wrote:
Her singing was dominated by a backing track. Her moves were nothing special -- defined by much strutting and stripper-like shimmying, with the minimum amount of acrobatics to prove her mettle as a dance-pop queen. Her physical form, still beautiful, didn't take one's breath away the way it did when she was 17.But on Tuesday's opening night of her "Circus" tour at the New Orleans Arena, Britney Spears, the mighty Aphrodite with the troublesome tawdry streak, nonetheless renewed her claim as one of the world's most adept manipulators of the public interest.
And even Perez Hilton, part of the show via a video sequence, said:
Now, let's get our biggest gripe/problem with the show out of the way. Yes, she lipsynchs during the entire concert. There is no live singing. None!. She recorded vocals to "sound like" live, but they were all canned, pre-taped.
However, it's a Britney Spears show. You expect that!
Even though you expect it, though, it would be nice if at least a handful of the almost 20 song set were live. But, that's not gonna happen.
In exchange for the miming, you do get Spears doing what she does best, dancing. And she's got the moves again!
Based on those reviews, it looks like she would get a B-? It may not have been spectacular, but we're still looking forward to seeing her in Newark next weekend!
Monday, March 2, 2009
Target rush! Prince is releasing new music at the boxstore giant ... and here is the AP story I wrote about it. ...
NEW YORK – Prince is coming to a Target near you.
The superstar is releasing a three-disc CD set through the retailer at the end of this month. The set will include two new albums — "LOtUSFLOW3R" and "MPLSoUND" — as well as a third by his new artist, Bria Valente, for the price of $11.98.
Prince is just the latest music legend to release new music exclusively through a major retailer. AC/DC and the Eagles were among the acts who sold millions of CDs through their partnership with Wal-Mart.
Prince has released his recent CDs through major labels, but they were one-album deals that gave him the flexibility to go elsewhere when the project was done. Last fall, he released a coffee table book of photos titled "21 Nights" documenting his record-breaking, 21-night run at London's 02 Arena in 2007. The book also included a CD of live performances.
"Prince has long been renowned as one of the world's most original and iconic musical artists," said Mark Schindele, Target's senior vice president of merchandising. "We are thrilled to have the opportunity to share his most recent work with our Target guests."
The CD set will be on sale at Target and its Web site on March 29.
Check it out!!
Sunday, March 1, 2009
There are performers every year (this year Jennifer Hudson, Kelly Clarkson and others were on the bill) but it was Whitney who was the star of the show, and she did not disappoint. She doesn't sound like 1989 Whitney, but she still sounds dang good.
Here are some pics of the performance!
Wednesday, January 21, 2009
Wednesday, January 14, 2009
I saw "Notorious" last week, and I loved it ... but of course, I'm not Lil Kim. I don't think she should have a problem with the movie, but she does have major beef with it ... check out the statement she gave to The AP this week, and Voletta Wallace's response, in this article.
Also peep the screenwriter and producer's reaction in the video.
Thursday, January 8, 2009
Katy Perry definitely has a kitchy side, but some of the best songs on her album are when she tones down her wild side and just showcases her voice and songwriting talents. It's evident in her latest, "Thinking of You" ... check it out!
Tuesday, January 6, 2009
So to kick things off, here's a song that I cannot get out of my head ... I didn't even know this was Jamie Foxx! Check this out ... so irresistable. And dang, is there a hit T-Pain is not involved in??