Tag Archives: contraversy

The GREATEST Love of All

Standard

 

There is no shortage of commentary about how talented, yet flawed Whitney Elizabeth Houston was. Every new story echoes Whitney’s greatness, and somehow points out her substance addiction- perhaps an attempt to dim the light of her brilliant radiance. Rumors, lies, and half truths swirled around her in life, and inevitably follow her in death. Despite all of the back handed compliments and condemnations of Whitney, her essence and life should permeate us all into a greater understanding of self.

 

Whitney was gifted. It was an absolute no brainer that the tall and gorgeous Whitney Houston was unlike anyone who had ever graced our radios & TV screens. No one was as naturally beautiful with the soprano pipes Whitney had, even as a teenager. In another world, Whitney who famously mentored and mothered up and coming musicians, would have been a vision in Versace couture teaching Tyra Banks to man up against Naomi Campbell and showing her how to work her awkwardness. Whitney told the modeling world no, & Arista’s CEO Clive Davis yes and singlehandedly transformed the face of popular music. As Madonna pushed her sexuality and Janet flirted between sassy and political consciousness, Whitney simply exuded the type of glamor usually reserved for Fairy godmothers and princesses from Disney movies. Whitney’s vocals had the soul of old ladies in the front row of Grandma’s church, matched with the power and control of a seasoned opera chanteuse. Somewhere between jaw dropping amazing and striking beauty was the woman, who’s gifts were perhaps so effortless she may have not known the true value of them herself.

the FIRST Black Woman to Make the Cover of SEVENTEEN Magazine was... That's right Whitney

 

Clive Davis knew the value. Whitney’s songs made him a very rich man, Her catalog, loaded with hit records solidified Davis’ legacy as a  great eye for female powerhouse talents like Janis Joplin, Phylis Hyman, and Whitney’s Auntie Re Re, (we mortals would call her The Queen of Soul) With Whitney Houston more than most contemporary artists the technique and polish of her vocals turned great songs into modern day classic standard, after modern day classic standard. No one could sing a song like Whitney Houston.  She is the bar, bar none.  All anyone would have to do is Wiki her and go to her Vevo channel to see for themselves. Whitney who was too proud to use Auto Tune and sing over recorded vocals during performances in later career, and the press never seemed to let Whitney live it down. She came from a different era of authenticity. She always wanted to come from an authentic place and connect with her audience, so even when Whitney shouldn’t have sang, she sang. But to remember Whitney Houston in that way is like remembering Michael Jordan as a Washington Wizard. Is Elvis not the King of Rock n Roll?  Whitney just has a 20 plus year career of creating pop and American music history while being the definition by every future and current diva is measured to, while never portraying the image of sexpot to do so.

 

No one is perfect, and no one understands what motivates another to do what they do. We can’t even understand our own actions at times.  Also to whom much is given, much is tested. No one can imagine Whitney’s tests, I am just thankful that I was around to witness her gifts. There are so many lessons we could learn from Whitney’s life. I think above all things she’d wish for us to LOVE- ourselves.  She’d tell us to cherish that which makes us who we individually are. When I’m at moments of confusion in my life, after praying and thinking, I will think about Whitney Houston, and what my Fairy Godmother would think is best. My tribute to her will not just be support of her music, it will appear in the decisions that lead the direction of my life.  She will be my reminder despite being a giving person, being a talented person, being a beautiful person, never to lose myself in any of those things. Whitney will remind me to hold on to myself before any of the attributes that make me who I am. She will remind me, in the end no matter how many people good or bad pop into our lives, we are on our own.  Whitney Elizabeth Houston will be with me to remind me of personal greatness, and a personal commitment to always show love, especially to myself.

 

 

 

 

Catching The One Who Got Away….

Standard

There is always that ONE. The one we tend to see unexpectedly in our dreams, who leaps over into our thoughts, and inspires us to gaze at the pretty portrait of a memory in the gallery of our minds until a “mess” becomes a Monet. In time, wine, and new new (you KNOW what “new new” is!!) the poignant picture our past boos painted in our heads dulls and living takes over. Life’s routines and experiences replace the longing for the proverbial old flame. But true to The Notebook, Letters To Juliet, and Friday the 13th  fashion that old thing comes back. Words of wISdumb like “if you love something let it go, and if it’s yours it’ll come back to you” dance around in your head like Swayze did Baby!!

What fairy tale indoctrinated, Prince Charming chasing, love starved, horoscope reading, star crossed, past reconcilin’ woman in her right mind would say no to that? NOT ONE. But that is precisely the problem.

We all live in the now, and not in our past. However each moment we have lived has led us to where we are in the present. The present moment dictates our future. Not one of these three things are independent of each other as the past fuels the choices we make in our present, as the  present  becomes the past. The past and the present SHOULD build off each other, since inevitably they do anyway. The future itself is inevitably going to become the past as well. Nothing can ever be undone from the past. No amount of compensation could ever undo painful or incomplete experiences from the past. It cannot be ressurected. The past is etched, yet the story of the future is unwritten.  Why junk up the book of your life with someone who thought they could do better than you, let you go and since deciding they are so fucked up and down on their luck NOW the ONE person who would take pity on their sorry ass is YOU? Is this really a romantic scenario? Is scrubbing up some jerk who shows up like an abused puppy

help please!!

on your doorstep pleading for mercy, forgiveness, and understanding (AND pussy) truly destiny? Isn’t Prince Charming supposed to be strong, considerate to no end, and confident on a white horse- not this beggin’ broken boy instead *adelevoice*?? Why does the old flame come back always needing and never giving?  Raise your hand if your old flame came back after they went away, gained knowledge about the world to share with you, got rich, worked so hard until they could sweep you off your feet just to retire with you to a bungalow in Barbados but first they have to give you this five carat ring to show how much they’ve changed ? More than likely the old flame returns after being spurned by a woman who obviously has more damn sense than your sucker for love ass. Clap for your pride, self esteem and good sense, it has left the building.

Who Should You Shoot Down?

Truth is the satisfaction of seeing the crook that stole your heart come before the parole board of your judgment squirming for your favor should be enough. How can any self respecting woman choose a “future” with someone who has previously exhibited such serious choice issues? Rejection is often the Universe’s way of protecting you from yourself. The one who got away LEFT. HELLO!? The one who got away told you no over and over as you cried and begged please have a heart, but now your heart has to open up like Houston for Hurricane Katrina victims for them? NO FEMA!!  Changing over time is a personal choice, and a person whose earned reputation precedes them should be looked at with a scrutinizing eye, not one of compassion. Being willing to be a halfway house for smooth criminals as they transition back into their old swagger could get you shot right in your soul, again.

Lot’s Wife turned to salt for trying to encase a memory of her past into her present and future. There is no need to look back on disaster when an unwritten future is ahead. Your experiences are for teaching, not for repeating, NOT FOR REPEATING, NOT FOR REPEATING. If you learned anything, you would have learned all the time, love, attention, and affection you gave that old flame who burned you would have best served to save yourself. But you didn’t learn did you….??

Besides…

Are You And Keri Hilson Trying Waaay Too Hard To Be Sexy?

Standard

In order to overt the world from Rihanna’s cakes, Keri Hilson goes in snatch first on her new single “The Way You Love Me”. Reeking of laughable desperation, Miss Keri Baby licks doors and dry humps floors, gives The Chef Rick Ross a lapdance, as well as sings lyrics like “I got the kinda pussy that will keep you off the streets” in an  attempt to ooze womanly seduction. Perhaps she thought she was grabbing her sexuality by its reigns and whooping us into submission, but Keri really just looks kinda pathetic.

Less is more. It’s natural to want to highlight the come hither features we are blessed to possess. An all out flesh fest for every Tom, Dick, and Rick Ross makes you come across easier than the Soul Train Scramble Board. Wild and looseyness will definitely attract the boys eyes, but along with all the “good” attention received unwanted sexual advances will plague you like bad credit. Also, no one takes anybody this sleazy seriously. So blinded by trying to be an individual and wanting to be seen as unique, many GROWN women have resorted to heaux tactics just to be noticed amongst the plethora of beauties in the world. Drunk off pussy power, these women have begun to think raw sexuality defines who they are as a person. Firing off cum shots as a personal attribute misfires because instead of owning your sexuality, sexuality begins to own you. What you think comes across as an insatiable appetite appears to be a primal Amazonic neediness that onlookers will fantasize about hitting, then unceremoniously quitting. What good is it to be a fantasy when the fantasy only runs deep as the last stroke? Most guys don’t even view these girls as breakfast the morning after material. Balancing sensuality is difficult for women because most are unaware of the natural voodoo that is in our clutches already. It is highly unnecessary unless your occupation is in porn or exotic dance to give too much in order to be seen as a young Venus. The brew of aesthetics, the way we dress and walk, as well as talk for us lucky girls already cooks up a dish of hot to trot. Personality, drive, and class in a woman added to the mix is what truly makes a woman sexy and attractive.

We don’t have to look at Keri Hilson as the only breaker of this lady law. A quick cruise on Facebook will show pics that would make Lil Kim cringe. Josephine Baker is somewhere in Heaven peeling a banana from her skirt, scratching her head in dismay wondering why we never really got it. Sensuality is a venomous, peculiar art that is so deadly it can even kill she who possesses it. If you are not a heaux, why wear a heaux’s uniform? No one is saying be a nun, but really Keri you don’t have to try this hard.

Fantasia: Affairs, Suicide Attempts, Abortions, & The Culture Of Sharing

Standard

So Fantasia, a rags to riches pop star, has decided to come clean about some pretty “dirty” things. After a summer of cringe worthy admissions to a dalliance with a married NFL player, (whose wife decided to sue her for adultery) and a hospitalization for a suicide attempt, Fantasia comes back for more disclosing her rewards card at Planned Parenthood also got punched during her time of Kurt Cobainity. Already a serial talk show couch sitter, and reality tv star who in her short career has acted in her own biographical Lifetime movie, Fantasia is the anti Beyonce who can’t seem to tell us enough about her private life.  We know Fantasia was an illiterate drop out, a rape victim, and lived in poverty until she struck it rich and moved on up Beverly Hillbilly style with her country klan. But do we know too much about Fantasia? And are her bombshell confessions just a ploy to push her super stardom even further into the stratosphere? Or maybe this is ‘Tasia Mae’s way of saying she is just like us….??

Twitter and Facebook, even the monolithic Myspace and Blackplanet got our culture reallly comfortable shooting off our most random thoughts and even secrets. In our strive to stand out, a greater need to relate and be of the people has been fostered. Most of us feel bonded to others by our experiences and we look for insight and comfort in the arms of the ones who’ve been through similar ordeals as us. There is something cathartic about a good ol’ fashioned public confession. Is it the way we cleanse and punish ourselves simultaneously? Perhaps we are publicly shaming ourselves not to necessarily share our experiences but to embarrass ourselves before other people can do it. Fantasia’s concessions of spending most her live living in a Precious Paradise, as well as taking the notoriously head hung low role of Ciely in The Color Purple, can’t help but propel the shame spiral Fantasia seems to be obsessed with. We’ve seen our culture switch quickly from being hush hush about molestation to thousands of men admitting their childhood rapings because of Tyler Perry’s trip to the Oprah Show. In the midst of saving lives and raising awareness, the innocent are revictimized again reliving horrific incidents they’ve blocked out- comforted in the fact they are not alone.

So what’s Fantasia’s motivation? Only she knows, but her story isn’t too unfamiliar as detractors shake their head in disbelief and her fans push her to remember that they love to talk about her voice too. Reality isn’t reality when we chose to focus on the worst of our lives, it becomes a drawn out Tyler Perry movie. Finding someone close to you that you genuinely relate to is a daunting task, so its understandable why we cast our nets out in cyberspace hoping to hook a friend. Maybe Fantasia wants more fan mail, maybe she wants to be a champion of adversity, maybe she wants to sell records. I’m sure she will sit down with someone and let us know where she’s at.

The Pink Friday Review

Standard

Pink Friday is Nicki Minaj’s ambitious effort to establish herself as the premiere female rap artist as well as a formidable and versatile pop sensation. Nicki goes from Barbie’s beach house to outer space to the streets in the 17 track effort featuring production from Will I Am and Swizz Beatz. Early on, Nicki hits hard with her lyrical animated steez as mixtape metaphors fly like shots from an automatic rifle at rap bitches, particularly at the “has beeen” from Brooklyn. Eminem and Kanye West drop FOUR LOKO verses on “Roman’s Revenge” and “Blazin”,  and just when you forget Nicki’s even on the track she returns with her “monster” flow. Decidedly Nicki takes the reigns on most of the singing vocals on the album, taking notes from the pages of Gwen Stefani or Fergie while most femcees (sans Lauryn) would have handed them over to R&B stars, though Rihanna and Natasha Beddingfield do appear on the album. Pink Friday feels like fun on a Friday night with the girls as the album takes on a hip pop vibe where Nicki boldly goes “pink” where comparable efforts like Notorious KIM had more of a “noir” vibe. Nicki doesn’t apologize for her arsenal of ear weaponry as even in her most vulnerable moments vocally and content wise she exudes confidence and self assurance.  Pink Friday’s feel good vibe is hard not to like as Nicki seems like a crazy alchemist mixing silly lyrics, crazy delivery, and radio friendly pop vocals creating a Bride of Frankenstein zombie, who just so happens to be lyrically married to Drake. Pink Friday is deliberately commercial as the album has a pallet of tracks designed for mass appeal. Critics who can’t wait to compare Nicki to Lil Kim and Missy Elliott will also point out the albums uncanny similarity to the pop rap hybrid mainstream sound that reeks of the aforementioned Gwen Stefani and Fergie, only swaggerized with a pinch of blackgirl.

Pink Friday is the step in the right direction that record labels need to wake up a&r’s to sign more female hip hop artists. The cotton candy feel of the album is sure to make fans demand more- whether cotton candy, or something with more sustenance. In the high school of female hip hop albums, Pink Friday is like a goth kid that has a Lisa Frank notebook who is the captain of the cheerleading squad. The album seems contrived to please all the cliques in the lunchroom but lacks true individuality, but that doesn’t take away from its effort in trying. Perhaps unaware in its prophetic actualities Nicki Minaj drops the perfect allusion in the stand out track “Roman’s Revenge” when she boastfully compares herself to Eli Manning. Nicki’s profound analogy to her dominance of the game is an exact metaphor for what she is to the game. No matter her achievements, she will always be compared to her beloved veteran lineage.

What Happened To The Feminists In Music?

Standard

…Hormones racin’ at the speed of light,

But that don’t mean it’s gonna be tonight

baby, baby….

Genie In A Bottle – Christina Aguilera, 1999

…I’m dancing alot and I’m taking shots I’m feeling fine

I’m kissing all the boys and the girls

Someone call the doctor cause I lost my mind…

Not Myself Tonight – Christina Aguilera 2010

At its basic definition, feminism represents equality and fair representation for women. Long fought battles in the 1960’s and 1970’s took women out of the kitchens and bedrooms and into the boardrooms of America, setting precedence for the rest of the World to follow. Women have always been portrayed as submissive and super horny in the media, and in music in particular. The 1980’s and 1990’s saw a wave women singing and rhyming about self-control and safe sex, while still maintaining undeniable party and radio friendly vibes. The stories they told were thought-provoking interpretations of a world that wanted to relegate them to the backseat instead of driver’s seat. Their strength was their convictions, and the added sexual element was the icing on the cake and not the batter from which the cake was made. Along the way, all that feminism was morphed into women somehow becoming mini men- hard liquor drinkin’, one night stand cruisin’ self serving righteous gluttonists. At its core feminism is the FREEDOM of being whatever you want to be, but the current state of music begs the question, what is it that women want to be?

Image is everything. Hip Hop music specifically, has maintained a love-hate relationship with female rappers. MC Lyte’s talent made her one of the boys and Queen Latifah’s non wavering Ladies First attitude made them both household names, even as platinum plaques eluded them. Salt N Pepa talked about sex, and TLC never left home without the Trojan man. Rappers like Yo Yo and Nicki D wrote narratives about how lacking self-control can put you into jams with careless punks. These women were always aware that their personal conduct had to be different from men because they were women. Da Brat’s platinum success was not so much based on a feminine stance, but because of undeniable skill. Women rappers began stealing the show from the men as Lil Kim, Missy ‘Misdemeanor’ Elliot, Foxy Brown, and Lauryn Hill routinely outshined the male counterparts they were paired with. These mid 90’s rappers were the golden era of women in hip hop, diversifying what the young female experience was about in even more profound detail. They were able to merge Salt N Pepa’s femininity with MC Lyte’s lyrical prowess into a hybrid of new female emcee. No matter the story told, it was absolutely female. Then blatant sexual overtones and carefreeness somehow began to overshadow the genre all together. Now it seems the only thing the female rapper has to offer is blow jobs for shots at the club.

Pop music used to be sprinkled with sexual innuendo, carefully blended with coy tongue in cheekness and hypnotic grooves. Janet Jackson, the underrated queen of pop music launched her Rhythm Nation in 1989, calling for unity, peace, and understanding. The ambitious record was Janet’s most commercially successful album, bringing topics like education, racism, and sexuality to the forefront. There was deliberate consciousness to confront ignorance and violence in Rhythm Nation 1814, the most fitting follow-up to the pro woman stance of her Control masterpiece. Madonna coupled her Like A Virgin antics with the pro-choice anthem Papa Don’t Preach, showing a more complete picture of what the modern woman’s life was really like.  Mariah Carey was then known for powerhouse singing instead of ass and titty bearing. The evolution of artists like Christina Aguilera went from sugary pop flirtations into full-blown dirty limericks. Christina’s signature song Beautiful, started a trend of female pop singers singing deeply personal records as Pink sang about abuse and depression. The trend the Beautiful started quickly evaporated, as Beyonce and Destiny’s Child were left as the sole bearers of feminine substance, singing about being independent women, not being Federlined in the hit Bills, Bills, Bills and embracing their curves with Bootylicious. Very few female artists could maintain visibility and talk about female issues on such a grand scale since the hey day of these artists, as once again the sexual overtones and blatant objectification ran all the positivity out of pop music. Classic tales like Unpretty and Waterfalls by TLC have been replaced with songs about kissing girls, Daisy Dukes and bikinis, and brushing your teeth with Jack Daniels. By the way, these songs were recorded by women.

It is a slippery slope to define women singing about sex as unfeminist. Women CONSTANTLY singing about sex is unfeminist. The current state of women in music is appalling as even talented women that sing about love like Corrine Bailey Rae can barely chart, let alone women who take on the subject matter of feminism. Women have allowed their place in music to be in the bedroom and the club instead of the minds and souls of their listeners. I can definitively say if I didn’t grow up in the 1990’s with TLC, Janet Jackson, Salt N Pepa, Lauryn Hill and many other female representers I would not be the woman I am today. Although these artists have integrated sex in their music, they have always exacted balance on what they represent. Will we look back on this era of female music as the exploitation era? I wonder what the culture of Ke$has, Mileys, Nickis, and Katys will breed in the young women of America. I hope they realize the world is watching.

History hidden from me
To hide my identity
So I’d never feel
I am somebody
You’ve gouged my eyes
I see more clearly
You’ve tried to rub me of my humanity
My spirit you tried to break
My soul you tried to take
There’s no need to be afraid
“Cause I won’t do unto you now
Amen
All that we’ve been through
Our time has come to rejoice
A new agenda’s due
Amen
It’s time to know the truth
Our time has come to rejoice
A new agenda’s due
Because of my gender
I’ve heard “no” too many times
Because of my race
I’ve heard “no” to many times
But with every “no” I grow in strength
That is why
African American women
I stand tall with pride
You want to know what it takes
To rid yourself of me now
There’s nothing you can do
Accept me for who I am now..

New Agenda – Janet Jackson From the Janet Album, 1993

Stop Letting People Feed Off You- The Last Supper

Standard

Bella from Twilight isn’t the only chick that gets seduced by bloodsuckers and howling wolves pining for her attention. The world can be like a zombie flick, with souless, hungry, pariahs starving for a chunk of your flesh, time, and money so that they can live. The bloodthirsty will not rest until they’ve sucked you dry and you’ve become one of them. Since garlic won’t ward them off, internal strength is the only thing that can keep these vampires at bay.

Hurt people really do hurt people. Accepting that good and bad are built-in guarantees in life are hard pills to swallow for most people. Many chicks have been beat down into thinking that the negative things that happen to them are cruel life fucking them and only them once again. At first a victim mentality can cause feelings of fear that paralyzes and stunts growth whether it be personally or professionally. Victims can evolve into bully assholes with a chip on their shoulders because they feel the world owes them a settlement due to the life sentence they have in their own bodies. These sheep in wolves clothing lash out at everyone and everything that opposes them, ripping everything to shreds until they’ve gotten their emotional release. These monsters have long killed any sympathy due to them, and refuse to take personal responsibility for their problems. Experts at having people by the balls, they play the blame game like four square- bouncing emotions to everyone else around them, not satisfied until someone else feels the pain and distress they deal with everyday.

The most delicious dish to these emotional gluttons is kind and giving people. They are the buffet that the tyrannical feast on. To these people, kindness is a weakness that should be exploited and eaten until nothing is left. If you find this beast’s teeth in your neck, examine how the blind eye turned to their behavior got you in this position. Man up and let people know when they’ve crossed personal boundaries. Do you even have personal boundaries? Examine what boundaries are. Don’t wait for a habitual line stepper to do what they are best at doing. Hand ups differ from hand outs. Examine why its your responsibility to be the Salvation Army to every unfortunate soul you meet. Why are you the one with the mop and bucket cleaning up other people’s messes? When intuition sends the fuckery alert signals louder than speakers at the club and the conscious choice is made to ignore them, that is not Frankenstein’s fault. You and all the other bitchass people encountered by this creature are complicit in creating it. Help someone by setting standards and expectations. Be the person that makes this needy person think. Standing up for yourself will feel better than the face down ass up alternative position. Thou art not the savior, stop being crucified for the sins and fuck ups of others. This stance is not intended to advocate self-righteous prickness, but to take the blinders off the most intimate personal donations of time, emotions, and even money. Discernment is the only magic power that keeps you safe from toxic, no air situations. Learn to tell your boss, coworkers, husbands, homies, congressmen, mommas, and strangers no- AND STAND BY IT when something is not feeling right.

We are not built with fuckery force fields to shield us from the bullshit raindrops that fall down inevitably upon all of us. We are blessed with intuition, ears, eyes, and good ol’ common sense. It is very important to grasp the smoke and mirrors concept of suffering as a personal thing and accept it as a universal one.  Look at others and yourself with compassion and empathy. We should all see everybody is going through something, but ultimately it is upon us as individuals to get through our problems. Life’s punches can hit like Laila, so defend yourself and dodge the blows that you can. Grow a backbone and give of your heart, not because you’ve allowed yourself to be tricked by wolf in grandma’s reading glasses licking their chops to take a bite out of you.