Janelle Monáe has always been a risk-taker, from walking on a tight-rope to introducing the world to pussy pants. They're bodaciously fashionable and unsubtly the best statement piece I have seen in a music video since Michael rocked that red leather jacket in "Thriller". But this music video is more than a fashion look-book for your next summer music festival, it's an anthem of female liberation and celebration. It's a perfect execution of song lyric to visual expression. It's fun and flirty like Katy Perry's "California Girls", yet bold and dominant marching alongside #MeToo. It's Janelle Monáe giving #nofucks and piecing together a strawberry milkshake of magnificent female self-love and all the natural perks that come with being PYNK. It's female camaraderie at it's fiercest and sexiest and issa f*ckin jam!
Janelle Monáe dropped this video on #NationalEqualPayDay and it couldn't have been a better slap-back and momentum booster for women empowerment and female creative expression. I can already feel this being the summer hit of 2018, unless "Despacito Parte II" comes out! Check out the video below and experience it for yourself. I'd love to hear what the ladies think about this one!
Last year, a movie came out that stunned audiences, drew out big box-office numbers and exceeded critics' expectations but most importantly it provided the stage for a one-of-a-kind breakout performance by comedian Tiffany Haddish. Girls Trip became an instant hit last summer as three leading female actresses in Hollywood and one up-and-comer collectively delivered one of the most entertaining experiences at the movies since Bridesmaids.
What made this film so unique and memorable?
It was the first Thursday evening after daylight savings time and the sun was still peering in from the bay windows of Humphrey's Backstage Lounge. The venue was dark and small. The backdrop was the Shelter Island harbor with the sun setting behind it. The place had "romantic date night" written all over. It was quiet, as only a few patrons had trickled in for happy hour so far. The only noise you could make out came from the stage at the end of the lounge, which seemed to be the only space untouched by the sun still gleaming in. The Luv A Lot band was setting up for their set that started at 7 PM. Their attire was different from that of the first time I saw them jamming out in the basement of Prohibition a few weeks prior. The members were dressed to impress this night at Humphrey's Backstage, making the lounge feel that much more of a hidden gem found in a big city like NYC or Chicago instead of a beautiful island in sunny San Diego where shorts and flip-flops are the norm.
If you are a big live music fan like I am, you probably plan out your concert schedule months ahead of time. I personally enjoy watching my favorite artists perform in small venues, as it is more intimate and less distracting from from large arenas and stadiums (and usually less expensive). The biggest problem with attending small venue concerts with great artists is getting tickets. With limited standing or seating room, many small venues sell out when big artists are booked so you must act quick.
As usual I have done my homework to research the best funk, soul and R&B acts in town this Spring. Don't be that person that misses out on a great live concert because you didn't know or tickets sold out. Here is your #noexcuses list of artists to see live in San Diego March-May:
March 9 - Talib Kweli presents the Radio Silence Tour @ the Music Box
March 10 - Billie Eilish - Where's My Mind Tour @ the Music Box
Besides the obvious headliners (the Weeknd, Beyonce and Eminem), this year's Coachella line-up will be sure to go down as one of the best. Coachella has always done a fine job of feeding into all genres of music, but this year it has outdone itself some incredible rising funk, soul and R&B acts.
There's no overlooking the big acts scheduled this year, such as Miguel, SZA and Jamiroquai. But if you're looking to see some new talent in the game, here's your cheat sheet to get your grown and sexy on in the desert this year:
We all know who Bruno Mars is, but who are those funky cats with undeniable rhythm always performing with Bruno Mars?
Ladies and gentlemen they are the Hooligans.
The first time I noticed this vibrant ensemble was back in 2012 on SNL when they performed "Locked out of Heaven". I believe I had the video on repeat for weeks! It was fun, energetic and something unseen in this decade of music. It resembled the likes of a James Brown performance except with some fresh swag tailored for the 21st century audience.
I used to take dancing classes as a kid/teenager (shocking, I know, since I have no rhythm) and my instructor would always tell us before any recital "no matter where you are on stage, someone is always looking at you." Now, I love Bruno Mars just as much as any other girl on this planet, but I could not keep my eyes off the band members behind Bruno. These guys were not only playing instruments, but killing it with a whole dance routine. They were all vibing together and genuinely enjoying performing every note of that song. It was fun to watch and you can tell they were having a good time doing it.
It's been 5 years since I saw that performance and the Hooligans have not stopped blowing me away with their energy and style, from "Uptown Funk" to "24k Magic". We've all seen them and we've all praised Bruno (rightfully so), but now it's time to find out more about his incredible band and give them props as well.
Check out the Hooligans just having fun while singing "Just Friends" during a rehearsal. This will make you love them even more!
It's hard to find soul in music nowadays on the radio. It's even harder to find any light of positivity or heartfelt music in the midst of a grotesque presidential election and a city mourning senseless tragedy. But if you look hard enough, and if you wake up early enough you will hear the upbeat sounds of Sunrise Soul on hosted by Nina. Sunrise Soul is a radio show that comes on every Wednesday Morning from 7 AM- 9 AM on WPRK Orlando, Florida. The name of the show says it all. Every Wednesday you can wake up to the smooth sounds and meticulous playlist from Miss Nina herself. She is not only the host of Sunrise Soul, she is also the weather-woman, your mediator, your guide for the week, your confidant, your new best friend and the ultimate soul guru.
I stumbled upon Sunrise Soul one morning on my hour long commute to work. As I was scanning the radio, I heard something unusual...
Krungthep Tea Time