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!!!

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 

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Old School Friday: And It's Over...

Back to the music at hand...

So this week's theme is Thank God It's Over.  The campaign smears, the fake promises and pretenses, the smug accusations and plain ol' bullshit is all over - and the better man won (come on, y'all knew I was going THERE!).  

For my theme, I decided to use one song to dedicate to my super couple.  They have a long road ahead as President and First Lady and I know that the love that they have for each other will continue to be the cement that keeps everything together.  Not only do I dedicate this song to them, but the words also strangely enough signify how everyone came together on Tuesday.  People of every color were embracing, crying and were just simply ecstatic.  You felt it, you saw it - it was undeniable.  And not just here, but in every corner of the world.  If that is not Love Power, I don't know what is. 

Like Luther said, "Love is something you should never hide..."

Have a good weekend y'all...

Tha Connoisseur 

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

An Everlasting Love...

"I love you here by me baby, you let my love fly free.  I want you in my life, for all time..."  Rapture - Anita Baker

I have been contemplating all day long how I was going to approach this.  I do not have any real functioning of my brain today, since I reached home at around 4 am and got up for work at 9 am.  I am exhausted, yet exhilarated.  Hushed, yet hollerin from the top of my lungs from the inside.  I am so elated at the fact that Barack Obama was voted the 44th President of the United States of America I can pass out.

For me, the poignant part of the night, was of course when he was named the President-Elect.  But I did not shed a tear until his speech.  And not for the reasons you would think.  

I am in complete awe and remain enchanted with Barack and Michelle Obama's love for each other.  It is the type of love that movies are written about.  The type of love where amorous daps are given and understood. The type of love that you know is out there, and wish upon your fellow girlfriends who you know are worthy.  The type of love that you desire, if you haven't found it already.  When they look at each other, so many words are said without even being mentioned.  When they are in the same room together, they flow in unison.  And when they come together to embrace, it's like magic.  I shed a tear  when the family came out at the end of his speech.  Michelle came over to Obama, hugged him, looked at him, kissed him and simply said in his ear - I LOVE YOU.  I was absolutely beside myself and the tear became a stream.

And just when I started to collect myself, he was at the end of his speech.  An impeccable speech of promise, purpose and passion.  A guide to what's to come from the Barack Obama administration.  At the end of his speech he graciously waved to the cheering crowd, accepting their love and by the looks of a Commander in Chief - he held back the tears.  I am sure he was thinking about his Grandmother and others before him who paved the way for him to achieve what he has.  Everyone on stage made their way back, but Michelle waited for her man.  And with his last wave, she took his hand and both of them walked off the stage together.  It was simply divine.

And so I left the results gathering I was at and headed to Times Square.  I cannot even put into words the feeling that was cultivating in the middle of the Big Apple.  It was ludicrous!  And in the midst of all of the cheering, hollering and other festivities, was a couple that emanated the love that had me spellbound for the night.  They hugged and had an airtight clutch on each other.  They held hands steadily and walked off together smiling.  Simply beautiful.

 I guess I am just a stickler for love.  Old fashioned, undeniable, passionate - LOVE.

On another note, I was talking to a Canadian friend today and I told him that it was an amazing experience being here to take part in this historic event unfolding.  His answer to me was, "Well we have to wait to make sure if it will indeed be historic."  Now, I was disturbed at the comment but asked calmly why he felt that.  He said that he didn't care that the President-Elect was black or white or anything and that Obama was voted in because he was the right person for the job.  I totally agree, however y'all know that I had to tell him about himself.  Not to make it a race issue, but the obvious is it's a sense of pride and so many other things that come along with his new position for us.  And I was two steps away in saying, "It's a black thing, you wouldn't and couldn't possibly understand..." and I had to catch myself only because I did not want to be like that.  Nor did I have the energy and would not be responsible for what came out of my mouth.  I met enough people, white, chinese and otherwise who understood what this moment means to us, why couldn't my friend?  I just do not get it.

Anyhow, that is not going to turn this lady's frown upside down or rain on my parade for that matter.  Even though I am Canadian, I am first and foremost black (yummy dark chocolate may I add) and could not be any more proud of Mr. Obama and his accomplishments.  And now comes the hard part, I just hope that the American people will be understanding enough to know it will take a bit to dig out of this abyss that Bush put you in.  But hey, with Michelle by his side I know they can conquer the world.  BESIDE every great man is an amazing woman and Barck has his in hand and heart.

Flashback of the day: This was a given.  Barack said it himself, it's been a long time coming...

See y'all soon...

Tha Connoisseur 

Monday, November 03, 2008


Y'all know I don't usually do this, but this is too good to pass up.  Especially with the election tomorrow, there is no better time than right now.

A friend just emailed this to me and it is PRECIOUS...lmao  A well known french radio station in Montreal (my hometown) pranked Sarah Palin and man, was it good!  Take it upon yourselves to try and translate the french sayings if you can or better yet, go here for a full translation of the prank.  I am sorry but as funny as this is, it is a reflection of what you would be dealing with if this woman was put into power with her partner.  Scary.  Everyone has their opinion and this is mine.

PLEASE GO OUT AND VOTE TOMORROW!!  I will be watching the results at a gathering in Manhattan.  In the meantime, enjoy!!!

See ya...

Tha Connoisseur 

Monday Madness...

"Just look about, you owe it to yourself to check it out.  Can you feel a brand new day?..."  A Brand New Day - Diana Ross

I seem to be still riding the whole Wiz theme I started from Friday, but it is so poignant in what's ahead come Tuesday when the polls will be set ablaze.  I am sending out my positive wishes to Obama as of now, more than ever since we are coming down to the crunch.  I hope my American brethren and sistren do their part.  It is after all, now in your hands.  Don't speak about it, BE ABOUT IT.

With that said, here is Monday Madness - the news that made me cuss, cringe or just shake my head:

1) Oh Terrance:  In my daily blog reads, I found a little something over at my friend Invisible Woman's page, regarding our friend Terrance "I think I am a crooner" Howard.   I have stated previously that I love Terrance, however singing is not his forte.  Sorry.  Well, for those who do not know, Terrance was let go from the sequel to the movie Iron Man quite abruptly.  And now we are learning about a lawsuit on his tail from assaulting a composer on the set of "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof."  WTF is gong on with Terry?  I know there are two sides to every story, but can this seriously just be a coincidence? (Black Cinema At Large

2) Black is the new Black?: Remember when Italian Vogue released its groundbreaking issue of Vogue with all black models?  Well it seems that the editor, Franca Sozzani, is looking to release another issue of Italian Vogue blackafied, but dedicated to Africa.  It will not be your regular 16 year old model sporting a $600 Gucci bag, but a more realistic perception of fashion from people like you and I.  It will also have fashion commentary from some of the top black entertainers of today.  Let's not forget to mention, half of the advertising revenue of this issue will go to different African charities.  So tell me, what do you think about this project?  Is it thought provoking and challenging the norm?  Or is it just for mass appeal and profit? (jezebel.com)

3) Like a long lost cousin...: Boy do we miss you girl, come on back.  The fam and I have been talking about you.  We do not agree with everyone saying that you are one of the "Lost Ones."  We believe that "When It Hurts So Bad" there is nothing anyone can say or do.  Because we are family, we are here to tell you "Everything Is Everything" and if you lay it all down and just "Tell Him," everything will surely be alright.  Come back to us Lauryn, lawd we are missing you right now!  Here is Lauryn out and about with the kids (and yes, with Martha Stewart).  So many things to say, but I will just let it rest.

4) Absolutely no tact: I was so heated and enraged when I read about this, smoke emanates from my ears each time I speak of it.  Could you believe that a gun company was so brash, as to use Jennifer Hudson's tragic family loss as an ad for GUN RACKS?  To put it bluntly, their add suggests that perhaps a bedside gun rack would have saved the family.  WTF?!!!  I could not tell you how heavy the expletives are, just waiting to jump off of the tip of my tongue.  Read it here...absolutely disgusting. 

5) More video jokes: I am a Guitar Hero junkie (thanks to my little brother), so when I saw this ad, I nearly fell off my chair.  If you haven't seen it yet, enjoy.  Kobe Wopping it ouuuut...lol  I thought it was PRECIOUS!

Flashback of the day: This is dedicated to my cold.  The Bitchassness that I had to go through all this week because of it,  led me to this dedication.  Cold - this one's for you...

See y'all soon...

Tha Connoisseur