Take Note!

Pictures and videos used on this site are all borrowed (well not all, some are actually mine) for everyone's viewing pleasure.  They are not being used in a malicious matter, it is all in good fun and most likely to promote the good stuff found.  Please don't threaten to sue, just ask me to take it down if it is a bother.  If not, thanks for the borrow!!!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Farewell 2008...

"Get ready, tonight.  Gonna make this a night to remember..." A Night To Remember - Shalamar

I am actually looking forward to tomorrow night.  Another year has passed and I have no idea where it went to.  This year brought about phenomenal new friendships, amazing personal revelations and a blueprint for what I have yet to achieve come 2009.  I have so many dreams on the horizon and my list grows every time I cross out a completed goal.  I allow no one or anything to stand in my way, I am too ambitious for that.  I have also decided to do some end of year cleansing and cut off or let go some of the vampires that I have in my life.  It's all for the better, new beginnings and such for 2009.  Just living my life.

So with that cleanse in mind, I was going through some of my concert clips on Ivory and realized there are quite a few that I have not shared with you.  Instead of bringing you my top tens of 2008, I have decided to give you a taste of a few artists that you will be sure to read more about here in 2009 and a few snippets from concerts I thoroughly enjoyed this year.

1) Eric Benet at B.B. Kings killing his next single, "Chocolate Legs."

2) Lorenda Robinson from Brown Baby Girl broke down "What You Won't Do For Love" @ Billie's Black: 

3) At the Brown Baby Girl show, Kimberly Nichole made "Love Without A Limit" her own.

4) The beautiful Mika sang one of her new songs from her forthcoming album to be released next summer, entitled "Summer Love" @ Billie's Black:

5) Here is Grammy Nominated Wayna singing her nominated track "Loving You (Music) @ Billie's Black (sorry it's a bit dark):

6) And lastly, I saw the marvelous diva herself Chaka Khan.  I was grinning from ear to ear.  This was the ONLY snippet I was able to get because of her stage po-po at the front.

These are a handful of snippets from the slew of shows I was lucky enough to see this year. Earth, Wind & Fire, MAXWELL, GEORGE MICHAEL, Mariah Carey, Beyonce, Billy Joel, The Police, PJ Morton, Big Daddy Kane, Wayna, Mika, Eric Benet, Monica, Dru Hill (yes, them), Mint Condition and the list goes on - it has been a very musical year.  Next year is only a day away.

On that note, I would like to wish everyone a safe and prosperous New Year.  May the New Year bring to you, everything positive that you put out in the universe to receive.  

See y'all soon...

Tha Connoisseur 

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Happy Holidays...

A quick note to all of you:

I am not going to be around for the next few days, as I plan to take in and enjoy the time with my family.  Have to take a pensive moment to assess everything that we are thankful for and of course give thanks for the simple fact that we are able to have a roof over our heads, food to eat, friends to share the good times with and love from our family and all around.

From my family unto you, I would love to wish you and yours a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.  May you all continue to be blessed and divinely favored.

See y'all soon...

Tha Connoisseur 

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Monday Madness - Not Quite...

"I came to bring the pain hardcore from the brain, let's go inside my astral plane..." Bring The Pain - Method Man

Pain is an understatement from where I am sitting.  The excruciating physical pain of traveling for hours on a bus, definitely does give a whole new meaning to love.  The things I do for my family.  I say that, only because to them - me deciding to fly rather than take the bus to and from Montreal and New York, shows my shi shi pooh pooh tendencies.  DO.NOT.CARE.  The bus, particularly Greyhound, is full of drama, void of any communication skills and just plain old unreliable.  After enduring about 14 hours of torture, I am most definitely ecstatic that I made it here to Montreal in one piece.  So on that note, you know that I have absolutely no energy to bang out a Monday Madness installment today.  Sorry.

During my pause, I think you all should check out a few of my favorite spots who are compiling their Best of 2008 lists.  Check out my girl Vivrant Thang as she goes through some of her favorite performances, albums and something else I am sure she will have up by tomorrow.  Then there's my boy QH who listed his Top Records of 2008.  And DJ Stylus has also compiled his 2008 Hot List, which is a must see.  Please don't be shy to show some love to my blogroll.  Only the best of the best in my world make it there.  

And of course, I am willing to share a few tidbits that balance my week musically:

Monday: My girl DJ Diva always has a funky mix to get your week started.  Check her out here.

Wednesday: EJ Flavors certainly knows how to take you back to the old school.  Check him out here.

Friday: A new find for me, Fave and his Friday Favecasts have been the way to close out my week. Check it out here.

And that's all I have for today.

Flashback of the day:  Easy going, laid back...just grooving.

See y'all soon...

Tha Connoisseur

Friday, December 19, 2008

Old School Friday:Tis The Season And Stuff...

Friday is here and this may very well be the shortest entry you will ever see from me.  Today's OSF theme is: Favorite Christmas Song.

To be honest, Christmas has not been the same for me for quite some time now.  It isn't that jolly holiday that I used to look forward to.  However, I do give thanks for being able bodied to visit my family and share in love, food and company.  What more could I say or want?

I have been steering clear of playing parang (West Indian Christmas Carols for those who do not know) or Christmas Carols on the whole.  My cousins even went so far as to call me Scrooge...lol  But everyone understands it's a tough time of year for me, so I deal and we move on.

Contrary to my mood and ranting, I do have a couple of favorite Christmas Carols to share. 

I love this movie and just watched it the other day for the umpteenth time. Will Ferrel is PRECIOUS and always manages to make me smile.

And my other song: I heart this album and play it every single year without fail.  

Check out the other fabulous OSF participants here.  Have a great weekend...

Tha Connoisseur 

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

ONUTSS Christmas Show Extravaganza...

"Happy Birthday to ya...Happy Birthday to ya...Happy Birthday!..."  Happy Birthday - Stevie Wonder

Oh right, wrong holiday (yes my birthday is a holiday, just not a national one).  Well it certainly felt like my bday last night over at the Shrine World Music Venue.  ONUTSS (One Nation Under The Soul Shack) hosted their annual Holiday/Year End Celebration and it sure was a spectacular event.  A number of indie artists were in the house to show Pam and Detrel love and thanks for what ONUTSS is about.  For those of you who do not know, ONUTSS represents a place where the love for quality soul music, amazing musicianship and camaraderie all reside.  All of the phenomenal stuff you don't hear on the radio?  Best believe that ONUTSS will bring it to you live and direct.  Artists, media, fans - you name it, all were there to represent and enjoy a night of spectacular talent and positive vibes.

The ladies behind ONUTSS - Detrel & Pam

The bill had quite a few stellar acts performing - Serena, Tom Paul, Robin Small, Keith Fluitt and Abby Dobson and they each brought down the house with their own style of seductive or interpretive soul.  Each artist took to the stage and showcased two of their tracks for the patrons to enjoy.  I will go through one from each.  Serena started off the show with "Nobody Has To Know," a stellar mellow track that had everyone in the groove right from the start.  Robin Small followed with her powerful gospel tinged voice, taking us all to chuch.  She surely delivered the message with "I Surrender" and I know that it did not fall on deal ears.  Tom Paul debuted "A Different World" and had harmonies floating from patrons in every corner of the room.  Abby Dobson represented with her unique, yearning and powerful voice on "Born 2 Love U" leaving everyone craving for more.  Angela Johnson, Monet, Mike Hammond,  Starbrite and Mika were all present (forgive me if I forgot anyone!) and so was Vivian Sessoms, who took the stage.  She blessed us with a passionate cover of Gnarls Barkley's "Crazy."  The versions I have heard lately from both Kimberly Nichole and Vivian, have been ON POINT.  No need to say anymore on that.  However, it was the finale that was worthy of an encore or two.  Keith Fluitt took to the stage along with most of the amazing talent in the house: Myoshi, Ra-Re Valverde, Andricka Hall and the artists on the bill - for a rousing rendition of "This Christmas."  It was a beautiful night that ended on a high note indeed. 

Everything just flowed...great company, good vibes and lots of love all around.  For those who were trying to disturb the groove - God does not like ugly.  They know who they are.  That is the reason why the night went on without a hitch.  Not to mention, I must say that I have been blessed to become friends with a lot of these artists.  I give thanks for these wonderful friendships and look forward to what 2009 brings forth for all of them.  I send out nothing but love and positive vibes.

Flashback of the day: I thought it would only be right to go a bit further back into time with this one.

See y'all soon...

Tha Connoisseur 

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Monday Madness...

"And the tears come streaming down your face,  when you loose something you can't replace.  When you love someone but it goes to waste, could it be worse?"  Fix You - Coldplay

Another week has begun, much to the chagrin of some of us.  For me, it brings me closer to another time of year that I am not too crazy over.  Along with the fact that I absolutely detest the commercialization of Christmas, I lament over other things.  I give thanks for the opportunity to have another year to be with my friends and family, however for the past couple of years it has been hard to digest because of the loss of my Daddy.  As I try to painstakingly go through the memories of having his boisterous and deep laughter fill the house, it hurts me to my core to even come to terms with the fact that I will be going back home and he will not be there to greet me.  

Yet on a happier note, I am off to Montreal's cold ass weather to see my peeps and family and I am looking forward to that.  I plan on cooking down the place with my Mom, bothering the hell out of my younger siblings, drinking it up, going to visit my Dad and tell him about my semester and such and do the damn thing up in Canada for a week.

On that note, let's just jump into it shall we?  Here is Monday Madness, the news that made me cuss, cringe and shake my head.

1) What could I possibly say?: I really miss "Rock With You" and "Don't Stop Til' You Get Enough" Michael.  Apparently he was out and about shopping in this get up.  You would think we would be used to it by now, but...UGH. 

2) The last thing I have to say about the matter: I am extremely happy that Jennifer Hudson's family can somewhat rest easy, knowing that the person behind the heinous acts of violence on their family is in custody.  Obviously it is not comforting to know that the person in question is someone they once considered to be family.  What really irks me, is the reasoning behind the murders.  William Balfour had the audacity to say that he murdered the family members because he thought a gift that was sent to Julia was from another man.  I remain speechless...

3) Why?: I have always liked Jennifer Anniston, but why the naked GQ Magazine bit?  Perhaps I am behind on my news bits, but does she have a movie coming out (oh wait, she does!  Something about a misbehaved dog?), is she trying to prove something?  This is not her usual ammo. Or is she trying to remind Brad what he left behind?  Especially since she is still answering questions about the whole marriage thing.  I think it's time to just tell everyone to shove the question where the sun doesn't shine.  Her answering them, personally, looks to me that she is still hurt by the situation - but sweets obviously Brad has moved on.  It's time you do the same.  Or better yet, keep your comments out of the magazines, that's a bit petty n'est pas?  Here's her pic for those of you who have not seen it. 

4) Times are HARD!: Things are not easy in the U.S. economy and everyone is feeling the pinch.  Even celebrities.  I am sure you have heard about the list of people who have been loosing property over the past few weeks.  From NeNe Leakes from The Real Housewives of Atlanta business (although she is saying she "left"), to Fantasia, Aretha Franklin (an attorney's mistake, really?)and now T-Boz.  Like a bullet, the recession obviously does not discriminate.  

5) And the winner for the Monday video laugh (thanks to Afrobella): Oh this is PRECIOUS.  And my West Indian massive will laugh their asses off.  The rest of you can read the print in the boxes...LOL

Flashback of the day: In listening to my favorite podcast on Wednesday's (EJ, it's all about EJ y'all!), I heard a Soul II Soul song and it reminded me of how fond I was of Caron Wheeler.  

See y'all soon...

Tha Connoisseur 

Friday, December 12, 2008

Old School Friday: My Favorite Band...

And hello there y'all, it's now 3:20 am, I walked in about an hour ago, I have to get up in about 6 hours, yet I am wired.  Don't you just hate it when that happens?

Well, now is the time for me to bang out a short and sweet OSF.  This week's theme is - favorite band.  In this day and age, it seems like the idea of a band in soul music is next to nil.  With the exception of a few, I do feel like the Snufalupagus syndrome (around, yet thought to be extinct) bows it's ugly head when it comes to this topic.

Anyhow without further adieu, I will share three of them with you.

One - I just had a flashback moment the other day with these cats.  Kool and the Gang were THE ultimate band for me when I was younger.  It's the brass, it gets me every time.  They were just so...Kool.  And please do not even get me started about James "J.T." Fine-ass Taylor.

Next up, without a doubt one of my Dad's favorite bands, which of course became one of mine.  I absolutely love, love, LOVE this track and they were known as The Stax Records Band.  It does not get any better than that.

And lastly, my favorite band from the day they released "Pretty Brown Eyes."  Stokley put it on ME.  And I have been a serious, die hard fan ever since.  I have crossed borders to see this band perform and the musicianship and love for the art and craft of music is exactly what this group personifies.  So many favorites, I have no idea which to choose...

Please check out my fellow OSF peeps here.  Have a good weekend y'all...

Tha Connoisseur 

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

PJ Morton At Billie's Black...

"Come out, come out, come out, wherever you are.  Do you know who you are?..."  Superstar - PJ Morton

Last Thursday after a long day of work and school, I decided to head up to Harlem, meet up with my ladies from ONUTSS and catch PJ Morton in session at Billie's Black.  

For those of you who do not know, Billie's Black is a small, quaint venue.  It surely brings a whole new meaning to an "intimate" soiree.  With a miniscule stage tucked towards the front of the restaurant, it is a great venue for a more personal feel for a special musical experience.  

PJ Morton hails from N'awlins (New Orleans) and brings the heat like it's nobody's business.   He brings it to you raw and that is a pleasure to see in this day of autotune, vocoder and all that mess.  But then again, when do I ever review any of those artists?  Moving along...

PJ made the venue his home - just him, his keyboard, his percussionist and bass player.  So heavy, yet so light.  They meshed seamlessly, because obviously you don't always need a huge 10 piece band to be the filler.  Sometimes, less is more.  And in this case, it was exactly what everyone needed.

Starting his set with the feel-good, sing-song track "Blah Blah Blah," (Jiborish) he was already in everyone's good graces.  The whole restaurant was singing along from the first word, and literally took over the song during the chorus.  Track after track, the Grammy Award winning writer had everyone geared up for the night ahead.  With the rhapsodic "Superstar," the floaty "Fly Away," the unforgiving "How We Were" and the jazz fused "No Ordinary Love,' it was an evening worthy of a fireplace, a glass of wine and a room full of good friends.  And that was the exact vibe emanating from Billie's Black that night.  Midway through the show, we where treated to a phenomenal rendition of  Gnarls Barkley's "Crazy" by Kimberly Nichole.  Kimberly took control of the mic and by the end of the first verse, she made the song her own.  Delivered through her power and testament to the song, I seriously thought I was in chuch.  And of course after an evening of sing-a-longs and break downs (PJ stopped in the middle of "Today" to break it down so it could forever and consistently be broken), he ended the set with a seasonal Christmas Carol - "The Christmas Song."  Sorry it's a bit dark, as the restaurant's lighting was dimmed.  Thanks to my girl Detrel from ONUTSS for the borrow:

That was my first foray into the world of PJ Morton and I will say, it is a trip I do intend to take again.  I love his music, but never saw him live until now.  I do hope to catch him in full concert again sometime soon.  Perhaps during the release of his new album in 2009.  Right now, you can enjoy the sounds of PJ Morton Live From LA and find more info about the talented singer on his official website here and his MySpace page here.

Flashback of the day:  PJ put me in a mellowed out mood and seriously made me all warm inside.  Took me back to this song right here.  One of, or perhaps, Tha Connoisseur's favorite song EVER.  I can't explain the bliss and heart palpitations that I am overcome with when I hear this song:

See y'all soon...

Tha Connoisseur

Sunday, December 07, 2008

Monday Madness...

"Video killed the radio star..."  Video Killed The Radio Star - The Buggles

I know, this one is quite obvious but my brain has been void of any type of creative flow for the day.  So bear with me.  At least this week y'all have a few things to look forward to - a review on PJ Morton's show I caught last Thursday and a little write up on Common's Listening Party for "Universal Mind Control" that I will be attending tonight.

During the week, for some odd reason, I have fallen upon some vids that had me falling off of my seat and breaking out into a laughing and coughing fit.  I figured since there wasn't that much on the news front that really tickled my fancy this week (why babble about the obvious stupidity of O.J. or Plaxico), why not share the vids so you can all get a good laugh?  It is Monday after all, so we can all do for a joke or two or three..

On that note, here is your installment of Monday Madness in video.  The news that made me cuss, cringe and shake my head (and reel and kick up!!).

1) Colbert vs Kanye: This is just too PRECIOUS.  One delightful day last week on Twitter, Kanye left a message asking "Who the fuck is Stephen Colbert?" - now of course someone went and did the research for all of us as to why Kanye was so incensed about Mr. Colbert.  Well, this was the reason.  Let me entertain you...

2) McDonalds really did it this time: My Canadian readers will understand when I say that sometimes we are just lucky that some programming does not reach our airwaves.  Let us take this McDonalds commercial for example.  It is the epitome of cheese and stank athletes foot.  And to make it worse, I am hearing that my boy Ne-Yo wrote it??  If that is the truth, he just lost some points in my book.  I detest this commercial that is being driven into my brain at least every other hour by some broadcasting network.  Not impressed, but it sure is corny - the dude is singing about McNuggets!  The commercial is called...wait for it...McNuggets Love.

3) The Ad Council: So much fun!!  My sister kept on talking about this commercial when she was up here and I never had the chance to see it, until recently.  I L-O-V-E it.  I think it really speaks for itself.  It is an ad focusing on the troubling statistic of families coping with the absence of a patriarchal presence.  It is not just in America, but it should resonate everywhere.  This add just puts a big ol' uncontrollable smile on my face.  I know it's only a commercial, but if only we had more like him...

4) Oh Mother of Satan I rebuke thee!!: I have no idea what to say about this one.  I know that everyone has to channel their creativity in which ever way they see fit.  Nonetheless, when I saw this video?  I was...speechless.   And I will tell you what I told my friend after I saw the video: "Prince is in a corner somewhere rocking back and forth."  And that is all I will say on this.  Here, take a look for yourself, at Supa Nova Slom.  I couldn't even watch the whole video...LOL (thanks Buttababy).

5) Star Wars is killah...if you didn't know...: We are obviously not the only one's that enjoy good music.  I was watching Return of the Jedi yet again the other night and I completely forgot about this scene!!  It brought me right back to my childhood, not to mention The Max Rebo Band was SERIOUS.  A touch of jazz and funk, okay not in english of course, but funkay nonetheless.  And with their own Alvin Ailey dancer in the background?  It can't get any better than that!

Flashback of the day:  I am in a hip hop mood and I am getting ready to immerse myself in Common's world tonight.  So, I thought I would dig in the crate and go waaay back with my favorite track by Chubb Rock.

See y'all later...

Tha Connoisseur 

Friday, December 05, 2008

Old School Friday: Singers Turned Actors/Actors Turned Singers...

Its OSF y'all and I must say, I let the holiday last week lead me astray.  And have mercy, it was one of the most important posts too!!!  A tribute to the one most musically high - Stevie Wonder.  So we all know I am going to have to do an entry in ode to his glorious self.  And on another quick note, CONGRATULATIONS to all of the amazing and talented artists that I absolutely adore who are nominated for a Grammy: Eric Benet, Jazmine Sullivan, Boyz II Men, Anthony David & India.Arie, Raphael Saadiq, Stevie Wonder and CJ Hilton, Wayne Brady, Al Green & Anthony Hamilton, Kenna, Maiysha, Chrisette Michelle, Janelle Monae, Wayna & Kokayi, Ne-Yo, Coldplay, Adele, Duffy, Radiohead, Beck, Gnarls Barkley, John Mayer, Nathalie Cole, Daft Punk, Eagles, Gerald Albright, Marcus Miller, Estelle, Pink and anything touched by Jay - Z.  Now if that listing did not give you an inkling of my musical spread, I don't know what will.  :)

Alright, now back to the lecture at hand.  Today's OSF is singers that turned actors/actors turned singers.  Of course, all of the horrible examples are the ones that play on the cinema screen in the back of my mind (thanks Mrs. Grapevine!).  Mariah Carey and Terrance Howard are right there at the top.  I am even tempted to put Jamie Foxx on that list, but his Golden Statue prohibits me.  If he would stop with the booty shit, we would have a winner all around.  However, these two below are examples of how things are done right. 

First up: The Diva representing for singer turned actor - Ms. Diana Ross.  Mahogany, The Supremes, The Wiz, Lady Sings The Blues - Ms. Ross did the damn thing.  My favorite song from this woman,  the Theme from Mahogany.

And secondly, my actor turned singer goes to Tisha Campbell.  Yes, I went THERE.  I loved this woman.  We all know she was that chick in House Party and who can forget her as Gina.  But back in the day, when my girl dropped "Push" and "Love Me Down," Tisha gained a fan in me. Like her best friend Tichina Arnold, both can B-L-O-W.  Not to mention Tisha knew her way around a dance floor like it was nobody's business.  Friday Night Videos killed out both songs and I loved every minute of it.  I didn't know which one to post, so here are both "Push" and "Love Me Down."  

Have a good weekend y'all...

Tha Connoisseur 

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

100 Posts Strong...

"Do you know what today is?  It's [my] anniversary..." Anniversary - Tony! Toni! Tone!

Alright, it's not really today, it was actually last Wednesday.  However, better late than never is what they say (who the hell are 'they' anyway?).  First let me take time out to say thank you to my girl Marvalus One, who has blessed me with another blog award and has a sister blushing, yet again.  I am honored and humbled to accept the Uber Amazing Blog Award.  I love to write and share thoughts and I am ecstatic that so many of you out there enjoy hearing my rants... :)  I thank you immensely (I promise I will spread the love on an upcoming entry).

Anyhow, I figured it would be fun to go through the top 5 or 10 - depending on how I feel after 5 - of my favorite posts in my 100 strong pile.  Let us begin:

5) My "6 Questions With" Series: If it is one thing that I have learned over the years about interviewing, is that it is so much easier to talk with a person than at a person.  What I mean is, I always find that artists end up becoming extremely comfortable with you when they are relaxed and not bombarded with similar questions they have answered for the umpteenth time.  Two of my favorite interviews I have ever conducted were with Teedra Moses and Tamia.  So I decided to use that so called charm that I have and apply it to my blog.  It is only 6 questions, but I have fun doing it and it gives us a little insight into the artist.  Hopefully a few tidbits that you did not know before are shared as well.  I have not done many, but that will soon change as I am working on a few good ones to bring forth.  For now, check out 6 Questions With Taniq and the first entry in the series, with Sy Smith.  

4) My Album of The Week: I have no idea what I would do or be without music.  Music is what fuels me and it continues to be my muse.  It has taken me to great heights and has bailed me out of great lows.  A lot of the music I feature under this title are favorites that I dig from the crates.  I have not written too many posts, but again, that will soon change as it has become a favorite of mine and a lot of you out there as well have made it clear that you would like to see more.  I aim to please!  A couple of my favorites include Maxwell's "Urban Hang Suite" (no kidding) and my boys Intro

3) Concert Reviews: Who doesn't like to hear about a concert that they could not attend?  I love to write concert reviews, especially if the concert is off the chain.  I try to bring the concert to you - the vibe, the songs, the flow of the soiree.  I make an effort to bring it to you to the best of my ability.  I usually run home and with the last beat of the drum snare in my head, I come in at 3 am and bang out the review so it is fresh.  My favorite reviews thus far are of COURSE Maxwell's show (still fanning myself vigorously) and my boy George Michael's show

2) Monday Madness: Now how could I pass Monday Madness?  It is so funny how this regular entry took off.  I think you all like to hear my rant and of course, I feed off of that!  The news is always filled with such negative reports - this one dead, this was blown up, this person was shot - sometimes all we need is a smile to bring things back into perspective.  They (there 'they' are again!) say that laughter is the best medicine!  And those who know me are quite aware that I love a good laugh.  I cannot and will not even think of choosing my favorite Monday Madness entry, however please feel free to dig in the crates and click on any entry.  I promise, you will not be disappointed!

1) Flashback of the Day: This is my FAVORITE part of my entry.  The part where I get to share a bit of my musical knowledge.  I mean, I do have to live up to my moniker after all.  I have mostly stuck with the genre of R&B, however I will be changing that as I go along.  I have always shared that I listen to a little bit of everything and I believe you have to in order to be a connoisseur and true lover of music.  I know as well that this is the best part of my entry for a lot of you out there and I am (in the illustrious words of Stevie) overjoyed that you enjoy the tracks I choose.  I will keep them coming as I know I have to meet high expectations...LOL

Well ladies and gents, you will be seeing a lot of changes here soon.  I am trying to diversify and do Tha Connoisseur.  I will let you know about the changes as we go along, but for now I would like to thank everyone for riding with me.  Also, I thank all the AMAZING and BRILLIANT blogger friends I have made and continue to make along the way.  And again, I thank all of YOU for reading my blog, commenting and having fun with me.

Flashback of the day:  I was inspired by Nelson George's Soul Cities tonight.  Joke is,  I started watching it after I wrote my quote above.  Funny how things come full circle.  My favorite Tony! Toni! Tone! song EVER!

See y'all soon...

Tha Connoisseur 

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Monday Madness Is Here Again...

"Happy days are here again, looks like this love of ours will never ever end..." Happy Days - Silk

Yes indeed, your Monday Madness is back.  I figured after all of the bingeing, gluttony, shopping, bruising, indulging and what not, a few good jokes will help with the digestion process.  And for my peeps who already had their (our, I get the best of both worlds) Thanksgiving in October, you get jokes for free!  

In the past couple of weeks, I have missed inserting my two cents on a whole catalogue of news.  Apparently the dumb ass people in the world just refuse to take a break and go on vacay, which leaves me with no choice BUT to give it to you how I see it.  Remember, this is just my opinion.

So here is Monday Madness - the news that made me cuss, cringe and shake my head.

***Update***  I am a bit late with this one, but obviously the Whitney Houston pic was not what it was, but we did have some fun with it!  Miss Anon was right in the comments.  Read here for the update.  Some people just don't have anything to do with their time. (www.bossip.com)

1) Fukkin Heathens! : I am so sorry I had to start off cussin, however that is what Monday Madness is all about yes?  I am truly disgusted with people who have no type of qualms at all or respectable behavior when it comes to a sale.  Yes, I said it - a discounted price on an object.  I am sure many of you have heard about the trampling situation at a Long Island Wal-mart.  Things just got out of hand on Black Friday, to the point where a part time maintenance man was trampled to death, a pregnant woman was caught up in the melee and 3 other people suffered minor injuries.  Are you serious?  A SALE made your animal instinct surface and kill and injure people?  I think that some realizations have to be made here, because that is just irresponsible and utterly ridiculous.  So sad.  My prayers go out to the families involved. 

**I also send out my prayers to those who lost life in Mumbai. Shocking and senseless...***

2) Why Raheem, WHY!!?: I love (perhaps loved?) this artist and was behind his music 100%, until this grave mistake.  He paired up with one of the two people (I refuse to say artist, again my opinion) I detest in the music game today.  Raheem, sweet Raheem, paired with T-Pain of all people to bring forth the debauchery of a song entitled "Club Hop."  I find that Raheem always did better with slow tracks rather than up-tempo, but to add that buffoonery to the mix, just straight up sealed the FAIL deal for me.  Want to check out the song, click here and good luck! :) (www.soulbounce.com)

3) John Legend...ummm...well...: My people's know how I feel about John Legend.  I seem to have a continuing love/detest (hate is a strong word) relationship with him.  Detest him because he tends to go a bit Broadway-ish with his voice (I thank my ex for pointing that out) and love him because you just cannot dislike tracks like "Heaven," "Used To Love U," and the funky "Greenlight" featuring Andre 3000.  I will add though, that Evolver is that 'ish!!  Love the new album.  However, I did stumble upon this and had to share it.  I love Stephen Colbert, he's an ass!  I am not sure if it is plain ol' sugary John or if it is actually chuckle worthy.  At least he can make fun of himself and that is important!  You decide.

4) Japanese dancehall...LIIIIIIIGHTAAAH!:  Just warning you, this may be a bit too much for the sensitive ones.  I think a lot of people are not hip to the fact that Japan has a serious reggae following.  They do NOT ramp with their reggae, especially dancehall.  Did y'all know that the dancehall queen for 2002 and '03 were both Japanese?  Junko and Keiva The Diva apparently "represented" for Japan (I have no idea how true that is, you would have to look it up), making Junko the first non-Jamaican woman to win the title.  A lot of people are wholeheartedly into the dancehall scene and this video right here, gives us a little peek into the world of dancehall in Japan.  NOT Jamaica, just reminding you, it is in Japan.  Again, not for the sensitive ones (Thanks DJ Diva...lol).

5) JOKES!!: I have been trying to end my Monday Madness entries on a comical note and this week is no different.  My girl sent this to me and I was in STITCHES!!  I am not a connoisseur of the classical persuasion, however I do have a few tunes that I listen to and are knowledgeable about.  This composition being one of them.  O Fortuna is actually a poem that was set to classcial compositions and has been used in various ads and such.  One listen and you will know what I am talking about.  Anyhow, this remix right here?  Classic.

Flashback of the day:  This man was slick in the time of well dressed R&B crooners.  Okay, we can look over the permed hair, but he was always impeccably dressed and brought the T-U-N-E-S.

See y'all soon...

Tha Connoisseur 

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Born To Sing Is An Understatement...

"No fear, no shame, you don't have to worry 'bout a thang."   You Don't Have To Worry - En Vogue

I have not had a musical entry lately because I have been balancing work and dealing with school, so as you can imagine my plate has been full.  I am working on some things on the horizon, so be patient with me.  By the way, a quick shout out to my sis-in-law, who pointed out to me that today would be my 100th entry.  So congrats to me!  I never thought I would get this far.  Very happy to know that I have reached here and still have so much more to share with you.  However, in the mean and in between time I have decided to revisit a post that I have not done in a very long time.  I will hit upon everyone's favorite -  the elusive Flashback Album of The Week.  

My album pick of the week is from a female group that set the standard and held that bar high for others to follow.  And truth be told, personally I feel that no other female group can really hold a light to them.  Well, except perhaps Destiny's Child.  The fashion was second to none, their beauty was natural and their voices were unmistakable.  The album of the week is:

En Vogue, consisting of Dawn Robinson, Cindy Herron, Maxine Jones and Terry Ellis was and still is that female group on the tip of our tongues.  I loved how they burst onto the scene with their bold sangin' selves.  They were powerful and there was no denying their talent.  I still remember watching Soul In The City (Canadian version of Video Soul) when "Hold On" premiered.  Those black stretch dresses were not to be forgotten and would soon be a fashion statement emulated by many.  Let's not forget the choreography - simple, sensual, strategic, it was all in play and these sexy women brought it all to life.  I took it upon myself to actually learn the steps and perform it at our school talent show with a couple of the gals.  What a show that was, the hotness was in the building.

En Vogue's star catapulted after the release of "Hold On" and the tracks that followed were just as assertive as the first one.  "Lies" was a funky tirade about why and how we get by through life on lies.  The black and white video solidified their fashion sensibility and Supreme-like choreography as their niche.  There was no other act who had that on lock.  When "You Don't Have To Worry" was released, I remember running home to tape En Vogue on Oprah.  The scene replays in my head like it was yesterday - the group in their pastel colors and black shorts, choreographed meticulously as always,  singing their asses off and having fun.  I believe I still have it on video.  Their last release from the album, "Don't Go" was a sexy ballad that made its way to many a make-up slow jam cassette I am sure.  Hell, it was on mine.  It so happens to be my favorite song on the album.  The begging, the urgency and the sex trickling from that song is ridiculous.  Put it on after a fight with your significant other, I guarantee someone is getting some by the end of the night.  Guarantee.

I think the awe induced marvel of this group, is the fact that each and everyone of them had talent and could sing.  It was a group where the lead was changed frequently and everyone blended in seamlessly without effort.  Whether in backup mode or as the lead, each one shined as a group member or as the pilot.  Born To Sing is another one of those albums in my catalogue, that I can proudly say I can play front to back.  Of course we have Foster and McElroy to thank for that, because their vision to bring forth a 60's type group brought us one of the best selling female groups to come our way.  I still don't understand why they do not own a Grammy, but that is another entry.  The unfortunate departure of Dawn was too much for the group and they just couldn't recover.  I can go on about the departure, Lucy Pearl, Terry's solo album, Dawn's solo album, Amanda Cole, Rhona Bennett (like a revolving door came and gone twice over), the return of Dawn - but I will not.  I will most likely end up covering it as I tackle another album somewhere down the line.  What matters is En Vogue is presently a group again.  I know when I saw all original members in Stevie Wonder's video for "So What's The Fuss," I broke out into the Roger Rabbit, Running Man and The Wop.  And when they graced the stage during Alicia Keys' throwback performance on the BET Awards, I was floored.   I was disappointed that I missed their performance at B.B. Kings in August, but I am hoping that Dawn will not have another fleeing moment and they will return.  All I can do is pray and give thanks on this Thanksgiving day that they are still making music and hope that their album will actually come to fruition soon.  I would rather see it on iTunes than to hear about the delays, push backs and sudden shelving of the project.  That my friends, will have me in an uproar.  For more info on En Vogue, you can go to their MySpace page here.

My En Vogue vid of the day:  Well I had to go with my favorite, come on now...

Happy Thanksgiving to my American peeps, I will be celebrating with you. :)

See y'all soon...

Tha Connoisseur 

Monday, November 24, 2008

A New Day Will Come...

"And I just know we'll have a good time..." Runaway - Janet Jackson

I must admit, I have been a bit neglectful in my musical playground last week and weekend.  There were no shows or interviews done on my end.  I needed to get away for a hot minute and do me.  I was up in DC doing it up with my girl Vivrant Thang and wow, I had a ball.  Great company, amazing museums (that Smithsonian is no joke) and great vibe all around.  I will be going back soon, that's for sure.

In short, I did attend the exhibit Road To Freedom at The Smithsonian.  If you happen to be in DC anytime soon, please check it out.  It is a riveting display of photos from a time where Martin, Rosa, Coretta and everyone else fought for our rights and freedom and paved a way for Mr. Barack Obama to overcome the odds and become That One in The White House.  

I had goosebumps when I left the exhibition.  The Maverick and I also attempted to snap a few shots in a "NO PHOTOGRAPHY" zone and where eyed by security after like white on rice.  Here is my favorite that I happened to get a snap of.

I will be back to my musical self as soon as I get back in order.  So much to do, so little time.  But what else is new?  Story of my life and everyone else's. 

Flashback of the day:  I had to go all J.T. on ya.  No, not Justin Timberlake.  Lawd.  This is one of my favorite Kool & The Gang tracks.  I loved me some J.T. back then...

See y'all soon...

Tha Connoisseur 

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Old School Friday: And All That Jazz...

I am keeping it short and sweet today, since I am off to DC (for the first time!) tomorrow morning at early o'clock and I am WELL EXCITED!!!  Have to go finish packing...

This week's theme is Jazz and that is not an easy task at hand.  I am sure the OSF posse can post a multitude of videos, it's not even funny.  I love the quintessential jazz men - Coltrane, Miles, Monk, Bird and the rest and I love the quintessential jazz women - Ella, Lena, Billie, Sarah and the rest.  I would go with my Mother's favorite lady Lena (happens to be my Mom's name as well), but that would be just too easy.  So I sat here wondering who in heaven's name I could go with, without being cliche.  

And then it came to me.

I have known my girl Adriana for close to 13 years or more (lost count), but she is a true jazz aficionado with a sweet melodic voice.  Back in the day, we worked together and one day at work in our employee room, she was singing away.  I had no idea she was a music head like I was and days later we traded two albums for our listening pleasure.  I gave her Erykah Badu's Baduizm and she gave me a Verve Box Set that had an amazing array of jazz standards sung by different jazz greats.  I was on cloud nine -  however there was one Cole Porter standard that stood out from the rest.  To this day, it is my favorite jazz song ever.  The mere feeling of the warmth of a fireplace, my sweetheart's breathe on my ear while we embrace...sorry, my imagination is getting the best of me.  

It does not matter which artist graces this song, whether it be Nina Simone, Anita O'Day or Frank Sinatra - this will forever be my favorite jazz song.  I could not find the version I was looking for, but I found this one by The Sharon Clark Quartet.  The woman is a scatting virtuoso!

Have a great weekend y'all...

Tha Connoisseur 

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Funky Freshed Dressed To Impress Ready To Party...

"All hail the one, that gets the job done..." I Get The Job Done - Big Daddy Kane

It was 8:15 pm on Friday November 14th, when my girl and I decided to meet in front of BBQ's restaurant for the 20th Anniversary show of Big Daddy Kane at B.B. King's.  The line went about 7 restaurants down, so obviously I misjudged the madness that was going to take place that night.  A good thing I had my ticket and a woman with clout by my side.  So as we sidestepped the line and walked inside, we realized just what kind of night it was shaping out to be.

This was not just a concert y'all, it was a night in hip hop history.  Big Daddy Kane is one of the premier MC's of all time and one of my favorites.  I was anxiously awaiting the man to step on stage and spit his verses, however I must admit, I absolutely love the trip down old school lane when the DJ's get on the wheels of steel.   You hear tracks that you completely forgot were in your collection mixed impeccably.  Along with the wicked tunes, was a video that showed us BDK in his hometown Brooklyn, NY, talking to the peeps and freaked out over the commercial influx of Starbucks & Friends in Brooklyn.  You were able to see the raw and tender side of BDK that is seldom shown and it was the grown man side that we sure are not used to.  BDK is still sexy, suave and shit, but he can still cut your ass with a lyric or two.  Don't push.

Before BDK took the stage, Biz Markie hit the Technics (or whatever DJ's use nowadays) with Mac on the side and diced it up along with Mister Cee and J.Period.  It was madness and it only got better from there throughout the night.  As of now, I could not even tell you who came after who, however here is the rundown of who came through: Biz Markie ("Picking Boogers," "Nobody," "Vapors" and of course, "Just A Friend"), Roxanne Shante ("Def Fresh Crew), MOP ("Ante Up" KILLED IT!! Crowd was beside themselves at this point), Positive K ("I Gotta Man"), Beatnuts ("Watch Out Now"), The Juice Crew ("The Symphony") and Eric Swan ("Nobody" chorus singer).  And in attendance to show their love and appreciation for BDK's contribution to the game where Eric B (sans Rakim), Busta Rhymes, Swizz Beats and Ice T.  The place was bubbling over with the old school massive making their presence known.  After all of these phenomenal acts, BDK hit the stage with a full band behind him to break it down and bring you back to the old school, to what's good and to what we know.  

One after the other he was spittin' verse by verse without missing a step.  From "Raw," "The Symphony" with The Juice Crew, "Young Gifted and Black," "I Get The Job Done," "Warm It Up, Kane" and my personal favorites "Ain't No Half Steppin" and "Set It Off" - it was on like a mutha.  Word for word the crowd was sucked back into a time warp of metaphors and slick parlay with that chocolatey smooth bravado.  The vibe was psychotic, the fans were crazed and the MC on the mic was taking no prisoners.  BDK's band was on point - imagine the soulful sax intro of "Smooth Operator" or the drum snare intro of "Warm It Up Kane," everything was tight and in sync.  He even went into a "Sexual Healing" remix during "Smooth Operator" (just a snippet of course) :

Also you know I couldn't help it, I had to get a snippet of BDK, Scoob and Scrap doing the damn thing!!  It's not as clear as I wanted it to be, but hey I got something.  And yes, they can still lift their leg AND do the splits.  I have seen it on video, but it is surely different live...LOL

And lastly, The Retro Kids where on hand to celebrate as well.  They are wicked with their multicolored high tops, gumby's and pastel colors.  And those dudes and gals can dance their asses off.  Of course, your girl did not let you down.  Sorry about the sideways action:

I know I didn't go into too much detail, but in all honesty there were no lasers, half naked booty shaking chicks and strobe lights.  It was all Kane.  And not one word I say will bring that night back to life.  It was as my girl said - LEGENDARY.  So I patiently wait for Rakim in December at the Knitting Factory and perhaps the release of The Juice Crew movie sometime soon (not holding my breath on the latter).  I've got time, but don't keep a sista waiting!

Flashback of the day:  Maaaaan, my girl sent this to me in an email and I was like I HAVE to go there.  One of Chris Robinson's first vids.  This is for the old school heads:

See y'all soon...

Tha Connoisseur 

Sunday, November 16, 2008

So Much To Share...

"They've got so much things to say right now, they got so much things to say..."  So Much Things To Say - Bob Marley

I have had a busy week, traipsing to quite a few shows last week.  So today, I decided to forfeit Monday Madness for a quick rundown of what was going on musically in my week.  Receiving my Monday rants and what not I am sure is quite rewarding on a dreary Monday morning, however I feel confident that you love receiving music tidbits even more!  You can hear my rants any day, since everyone knows that I have SO much to say.

First off, I mentioned that I was going to a ONUTSS listening party for Wayna and Mika.  And what a session it was.  Harlem diva Mika was up first with her sultry voice killing us softly with her tracks "Summer Love" and "Loving You Is Easy."  Mika's album is not released as yet, but will be available next summer.  She is hard at work on her baby and we were treated to a glimpse of what to expect.  I am looking forward to her release.  A voice that is smooth, controlled and seductive.  In the mean and in between time, you can catch her at Billie's Black on Friday November 21st.  If you would like more information on Mika, you can find it on her MySpace page here.  Ethiopian beauty Wayna took the stage with her honey-tinged voice and did the damn thing.  With the release of her new album "Higher Ground" riding Billboard's Hot R&B Single's list, it is just the beginning for the songbird.  Wayna shared her passionate version of Minnie Riperton's "Loving You" and a fun track entitled "Mr. Duracell."  If you do not have the album as yet, you can first visit her MySpace page to hear a few tracks and THEN go get it.  It is an eclectic blend of tracks with a touch of jazz, love, social commentary and soul.  It is presently on heavy rotation on Tangie.  I had an opportunity to chat it up with her for a bit and she is such a beautiful spirit.  I will have a "6 Questions With" coming up with her very soon.  Stay tuned.

Wayna and I

Next on the horizon, I was up at Frank's Cocktail on Saturday night covering Kameron Corvet, KuKu and Tomas Doncker.  There is sooo much to write on that, but lucky for me, I have a review to do for 4dasoul.com  I will let you know when the review is up.  But believe me when I say this - Kameron Corvet is not only VERY easy on the eyes, but the man can sing his ass off.  And boy can he strum the hell out of a guitar.  We all know how I am a stickler for a serious acoustic set.  He is a sweet and humble dude as well.  I think for me, when an artist is down to earth, easy to communicate with and just your average joe - it makes them even more likable.  I am a people person after all!  And that theme reverberated right through the line of artists Saturday night.  The acoustic sets from all three artists were CRAZY.  My girl, the talented and wonderful Monet went up and jammed with Kuku and Tomas Doncker on her flute.  It was just a funky good time.  I will not say anymore, but my review should be up soon.  Here is a group pic:

from left to right: Kameron Corvet, Monet, Tomas Doncker and KuKu.

Myself and Kameron Corvet

Monet, KuKu and Myself

Flashback of the day:  I am sooo in a hip hop mood, it's no joke.  I went to see Big Daddy Kane on Friday night and I am STILL floating.  I will most definitely have a write up for you on Wednesday, because I just can't let that night in hip hop history pass without addressing it.  So with that said, here is some BDK for ya - 

BDK review on Wednesday.  

See y'all soon...

Tha Connoisseur

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Old School Friday: Happy Birthday To Ya...

Happy Born Day to me!  Well okay, not exactly.

This week's theme is the celebration of my birth year.  A year where there was an abundance of impeccable music - soul and otherwise, so what a choice I have to deal with.  I don't even know where to start!!!

So the thing is, how do I do my post without revealing my age?  Well, believe it or not, I really do not care about my age.  I always felt that age is nothing but a number, except for when it comes to dating.  New York City happens to have a plethora of hungry adolescents and young men who think that they know what an older woman needs and wants.  I am not saying that I am 60 (I am only 33, but I am GROWN), but these "youths" need to back it up something fierce!  I do thank the lord, my Mom, Dad and Grandparents for my wonderful genes and hope to keep it up for the years to come.  But seriously, a sister is sick of being approached by 21 - 25 year olds.

I digress!!  So by the subtraction made, I guess you realized that my fabulous self found her way into the world in 1975.  A year when The Wiz debuted on Broadway, Parliment was groovin' with the release of "Chocolate City," and Minnie Riperton left her undeniable mark with her five and a half octave blessing on "Loving You."  Not to mention my favorite ill-humored shark was on a rampage eating everyone who passed his way - yes, my boy Jaws.  This was my year.

So with that said, I have decided to choose two picks today since there are so many songs that I was raised on (I really miss my Daddy) and that have stuck with me over the years.

Here is one that I could not forget at all.  The look on my cousin's face when I told her he passed, was like she lost her best friend.  I felt it to the core.  May he rest in peace.

And secondly, this is for me.  I love Earth Wind & Fire and seeing them in concert this past summer was a check off of my "must see" concert listing.  I think this song reflects what my parents have instilled in me from day one.  Contrary to what anyone will tell me along the way, I am to always remember this:

I wonder if this was on Obama's play list? 

I dedicate this entry to my musical and life teacher - my Dad.  I miss you. :)

Have a great weekend y'all...

Tha Connoisseur 

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

A Musical Quickie...

"You can ring my beeeeeelll, ring my bell..."  Ring My Bell - Anita Ward

This track above, is one of my Energizer Bunny songs.  A song I put on to get a little "umph" into my day.  There is so much going on this week, I am trying to keep my head above water musically.  Just trying to muster up enough energy to get around to all of these shows and also walk along the tight rope of work and homework.  New York is certainly keeping me on my toes, no doubt.  Balance is the key!

I was thinking of showcasing an album of the week, since I have not delivered one in a hot minute.  But in all honesty, I am fighting to keep my eyes open right now.  And I have a long day ahead tomorrow (or more like later).  So that idea will have to stay on the back burner until next week.

I hope that you all were able to catch the premiere of Nelson George's Soul Cities show on VH1 Soul.  In a series of episodes, Nelson will be visiting key cities in the States that are rich with musical history, hot spots and such.  We know that Nelson would only bring us the best, so I look forward to catch the repeat when VH1 decides to air it.  Until then, I will have my timer on the boob tube to remind myself that there are other things going down on Tuesday nights besides 90210.

Tomorrow I will be attending an ONUTSS event at Billie's Black.  The soulful sistrens Pam and Detrel will be showcasing Wayna and Mika on the Soul Shack stage.  I have heard great things about both artists and will have more to report on both soon.

On Friday night will be the ultimate rap session - BIG DADDY KANE.  One of my favorite MC's of all time will be gracing the stage at B.B. King's and you know I will be there in all of my glee!  I will go absolutely nuts when I hear the intro to "Set It Off."  I never saw Kane perform back in the days of James Lyng in Montreal (where all the rap concerts went down).  However, I did meet him once hanging in front of Beat Street in Brooklyn back in the hey day.  I thought I was going to pass O-U-T.  There are no camera's allowed at B.B. King's, so guess who will not have video?  Nonetheless, I will have a review up for you sometime.

And on Saturday night, if I can still manage to stand - I will be heading up to Frank's Cocktail Lounge to check out Kameron Corvet, who I have heard takes the term 'acoustic' to a whole other level.   And lord knows I am a sucker for an acoustic set.  Again, something on his performance next week as well.

Flashback of the day:  How about a little Roberta Flack and Donny Hathaway?  I LOVE this track, it just doesn't get any better than this...

See y'all soon...

Tha Connoisseur 

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Monday Madness...

"As around the sun the earth knows she's revolving..."  As - Stevie Wonder

And another Monday is here and what a week it has been.  We are here again at the commencement of another one, the joke's on us - it's good old Monday.  So what better way to start of the semaine, but with a little Monday Madness?

So here is Monday Madness: the news that mad me cuss, cringe and shake my head.

1) WHA DE FRANCE ??!: I am sorry, but I had to get West Indian on that one.  When I saw this, I was floored.  Floored in the sense that someone would allow Ms. Whitney Houston to do this and think it was all good.  Whoever her publicist is (or whomever it is at the label - shame on you Clive!), he or she needs to be FIRED.  This picture below is supposed to be the cover shot for The Voice's upcoming release "Undefeated."  It's like Mariah reincarnate!  And you all know how I feel about her.  You can tell me what you think in the comments.  I look forward to hearing it...

2) This young summama ding ding needs a belt: Who, along with me, would love to give this Soulja Boy dude some licks?  These little ones are thinking they are so grown, yet the most stupidest things come out of their mouth.  In case none of you heard about the simpleminded remarks he made, let me enlighten you.  In an interview with Toure from BET, these words came out of his mouth.  And really, the question doesn't even matter at this point - 

"Shout out to the slave masters!   Without them, we'd still be in Africa."..."We wouldn't be here to get this ice and tattoos..."

This child may want to think about putting down the mic and taking some time away from rapping his YOOOUUUUU bullshit.  A few courses in black history and intelligence 101 would do his ass some good.  I do not care for his apology either, sorry.  Think before you speak...

3) I want an alter ego too!!: I have decided that my alter ego is going to be Choco Lattay.  If everyone and their cat and dog can have one, why can't I?  From Mary J Blige and Brook Lynn, Beyonce and Sasha Fierce, we now have Miss Ciara and Super C.  Yes, you read right - Super C.  At least the other two were a bit more thought out.

4) And where on earth was I?: I know this happened way back in October, but I just got wind of it.  How is it that Prince was right under our noses in New York and we didn't even know?  Well...I didn't know!?  He gave two private shows at Hotel Gansevoort for those lucky enough to afford the $1000 ticket to the first show or the $312 to the second.  Mind you, the proceeds all went to charity so I can't be mad at that.  I have been lucky enough to see the Royal Purple one in concert and boy is he worth every cent.  So to have the opportunity to see him at such a small venue, I am sure was priceless.   I am oozing with jealousy.

5) Another video joke: So far for the past few weeks, I have been able to find great videos to give us some chuckles to fight our Monday blues.  Here is a commercial for Boost Mobile that I saw the other day.  Don't let them fool you, advertisers are still jockin' hip hop.

Flashback of the day:  I had to go with Ms. Anna Mae Bullock today.  If I didn't know better, I would swear this took place during the "We Are The World" taping.  But that's just me.  Enjoy!

See y'all soon...

Tha Connoisseur