all the great African-American musicians — now and in the past — the most
puzzling questions of the year in entertainment have to be: Why were there no
black artists inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2013? Or on the
Billboard Hot 100 chart?
those who were passed over for induction into the Hall of Fame Class of
2014 (to many people’s dismay) was mega Disco group Chic. Among the other
African-American artists nominated were ’70s funk band The Meters, pioneering
rap group N.W.A., and hip hop icon LL Cool J. But not a one made the cut. That
honors went to Kiss, Nirvana, Hall & Oates, Peter Gabriel, Linda Ronstadt
and Cat Stevens.
“Not a single living person of color got into the Rock
Hall this year. Among the Class 2014, only the late Clarence
Clemons—inducted as a sideman with the E Street Band—is black,” notes Slate.
This has happened only once before in the Hall’s 28-year history, in 2003
when the late sideman Benny Benjamin of The Funk Brother was the only
What’s ironic, says Slate is that for the Class of 2014
the Hall will induct Daryl Hall and John Oates — an act with a long history of
soul-music appreciation that once even topped the R&B chart—so Rock Hall
voters are honoring the sound of black music–not black people.
But it seems the Hall of Fame inductees reflect consumer
appetite. In 2013, while the public seemed to love rhythmic music as much as
ever, they didn’t buy it
from black acts. Not one lead black act has topped the Hot 100 all year.
Amazingly, this has never happened before in the chart’s
55-year history, reports Slate. Go back to 2004 when every song that topped the
Hot 100 was by a person of color. Fast forward to this year when black artists
had only featured roles on those hits, such as rapper T.I., 2013 MVP Pharrell
on Robin Thicke’s “Blurred Lines” (among other songs), and Rihanna backing
Eminem on the current No. 1, “The Monster.” Notes Slate: “We
should place an asterisk next to half-Filipino, half–Puerto Rican Bruno Mars,
who topped the big chart twice this year, with ‘Locked Out of Heaven’ and ‘When
I Was Your Man’—but neither one was an R&B/hip-hop radio hit.”
“Even the R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart was topped by white
acts 44 out of 52 weeks this year,” the article continues. In large part,
that’s due to a controversial changeBillboard made
to the R&B/hip-hop chart at the end of 2012 that essentially makes it a
condensed version of the Hot 100, rendering the chart near-useless to hardcore
fans of black music,” reports Slate.
Perhaps Beyoncé new late-fourth-quarter blockbuster could
alter the charts but still what happened to Kanye, Jay-Z, Drake, Wale, J. Cole,
A$AP Rocky—all led the Billboard 200 this year? Most only landed on the chart
for a single week apiece, except Jay’s Magna Carta Holy Grail
which had two.
For a song to reach Billboard’s Top 10 for
more than a week, it’s got to become ubiquitous, booming from cars, circulating
on social media, generally being in the ether for weeks on end, reports Slate.
But so far in 2013 no black was able to do that.
---and while waiting for her Pineapple Upside Down cake to bake in my oven, when she looked through my vinyl collection and came across Andre Cymone cds and knew these songs and began to sing them, I began to wish her boyfriend wasn't a friend of mine and that they didn't live next door. And that she was single. She's about 10 years younger than me. How does she know about Andre Cymone? She said she came across Jody Watley's song Still a Thrill, and did some research and found out the producer was Prince's childhood best friend and that he initially was more Prince than Prince.
Damn. I wish she was single. She's a fan of Andre Cymone, Jody Watley, and Prince
I decided to post other songs Andre Cymone produced:
A beautiful movie based on the true story of Kimani Maruge, an 84 year old villager and a Mau Mau veteran, who decides to enroll in school for the first time to educate himself after hearing an announcement on the radio about the Kenyan government’s offering of free primary school education to “all”. All while facing resistance from the public’s claims of an “old man” taking up space.
Riccardo Tisci is known, among other talents, for having one of the keenest eyes in casting. So when he puts an unexpected face in his ad campaigns for Givenchy, the world takes notice. Expect tremors on this one. Presenting the new star of the label’s Mert & Marcus-shot campaigns: neo-soul singer Erykah Badu.
“Erykah, she’s an icon—come on!” Tisci said by phone from Paris. “What I want to do with my advertising campaign is spread the love. Already now it’s been three seasons that I’ve been using people that express something—they are great artists, or beautiful women, or stylish women, or models that I really believe in. It’s kind of a family portfolio.”
Tisci had known Badu slightly but had never worked with her. Still, he said, he’d had her image in the back of his mind when he was designing theSpring 2014 Collectiona mash-up of African and Japanese influences. “She’s one of the most stylish women I’ve met in my life,” he said. “She’s got such a good sense of proportion, of colors.”
What may attract as much attention as the unexpected Badu cameo is the fact that all of the campaign’s female models are women of color (the models Maria Borges, newcomer Riley, and Asia Chow). It follows a season with a noticeable uptick in the use of models of color on the runway, following scathing condemnations of homogeneity in fashion from Bethann Hardison and Iman, sounding off from certain casting directors, and coverage of the issue in The New York Times.
“There was a lot of talk this season in fashion,” Tisci said. “Me, I was one of the persons who ended up not being touched by this. I discovered Joan Smalls, I discovered Maria [Borges]. I discovered a lot of black girls, and I’ve been always supporting them. For me, I grew up in a family and I grew up in a culture, an education, that we all are the same.” (He was already working on the collection, and had Badu in mind, when the first articles came out.)
It’s true that Tisci has been active in promoting women of color on his runway and in his campaigns. (Besides Smalls and Borges, he has championed Grace Mahary, Dalianah Arekion, and Daniela Braga, among others.) Does he think the world will catch up to his lead? “I hope so,” he said. “It’s 2013. Everybody’s being so cool about Instagram, about Facebook, any media—everybody’s being so open. At the end of the day, why are not so many black girls or Latin girls in shows? When you have an American president who is black! When I see this happening, it’s quite sad, I think. People can be so avant-garde, so advanced, but actually not, because people are still making differences between skin color.”
A friend had this on his facebook page and he shared it with me. I'm not sure how I feel about this. I welcome your responses. As I watch it again I decided that I'm actually offended by it.
What say you?
A friend of mine has a party every year where each person brings a toy. The toys are for a toy charity that his law firm represents. Like all his other parties, I am the resident cake baker. As a matter of fact, most of his friends refer to me as the Cake Man. I like it because it serves as a great conversation piece when people want to know who made the cakes, or if I'm standing and wishing I could think of something to say to someone new, and somebody comes by and says 'have you tried the cake? This guy here, Alieux, makes the best cakes."
This year I couldn't decide which of my new cakes to bake, so I made them both; I was concerned that I had made too much, but actually, I didn't make enough. They devoured it.
People that would otherwise not speak to me- they spoke to me about the cakes.
So this woman on the train sees my ID and she asks me what an underwriter is, and so I tell her. She then says" you ain't like the regular ordinary brutha, talking all proper and shit. Where you from? England?" I wanted to say that I was from a place where women didn't wear 5 completely different colors of make up at the same time and that had at least 8 teeth in their mouth, but I didn't want to get cussed out, so I just said 'Brooklyn'.