I was perusing my blog and realized that it was a little…sterile. A little detached from who I am. I want to approach my blog a little different this year, I feel it can be more personal, more tangible, and  A LOT more updated. I was going through my film from 2010 and snagged some of my most memorable moments of the year and wanted to share them with you all. I hope you enjoy them as much as I enjoyed taking them and being in the moment.  So, bear with me as I make changes here and allow me to expose to you more of what I do.

Hope to see some of you tonight at Eso Won Books for a night with the great Ms. Nikki Giovanni…

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Spreading Her Wings

I was at a true lose for words when my niece told me yesterday that Lady Tee passed away. I still can’t wrap my head around it. Her songs remind me of my childhood. Her voice reminds me of being carefree, no worries, no concerns. Damn, the power this tiny lady had in her gift of song!
I was fortunate enough to see her perform one year at Magic’s Mid-Summer’s Night Gala but even more blessed to have been invited to her house for a party. Teena took me and my friends in a treated us like family. That’s just how she was.
I’ve told my family several times when I make my transition from this world for them to play “Deja Vu”, so today this post is my request to her.
Miss you Teena!!!

What’s Your Legacy?

Here’s one that didn’t slip by us during the American Black Film Festival.

You know how there is one project/film/movie that takes an actor to the next level of their craft? You can almost feel the transition. See the whole thing unfold all within the 95 minutes of  the movie? You walk away saying to yourself, “Damn, I didn’t expect all that from him! Mark my words, he’s about to BLOW UP!” Get ready for that from Idris Elba in this film. You have never seen him like this before. A mentally battered Black Op’s Solider with some very personal issues he is trying to resolve in a room somewhere in Brooklyn all by himself, literally. This is one of those movies you have to watch twice to notice some of the intricate details. Watching this trailer again reminded me of just how talented this man is and the creativity of the filmmaker.

This labor of love was created by Thomas Ikimi a fellow countrymen of Elba’s. Ikimi takes you where most black filmmakers don’t… a psychological action thriller whose main character is black. His topic is unfamiliar for most of  us people of color, that it actually puts a whole new twist on how you view those who are defending our country.  This film made me feel heavy and drained but it keep me wanting more all the way to the end. If that was the mission of the director, he accomplished it.

Besides, having this indie out, Elba currently has a 6 week episodic drama which airs Sunday nights on BBC America; “Luther”. He plays John Luther, a sharp, über intelligent homicide detective, on the brink of a divorce, and self-destruction. The writing is stellar (Neil Cross), the acting flawless, and the theme fresh. Prepare yourself to become addicted to this series. There is one little thing that is a bit distracting to me and it’s Elba’s hair! What in the world are they doing with it? Fauxhawk? Disheveled look? Loss of…? or maybe he has another project in the works? Whatever it is, I must look past it and focus on the prize.

Make sure you support Black Films and cop your own Legacy DVD or Blu-Ray on December 28th.

BTW: Mr. Elba serves as Executive Producer on “Legacy” and Associate Producer on “Luther”. Talk about well-rounded.

Just Because

Those who know me, know that I am silly. So this post should come as NO surprise. From the concept itself to the script and the soundtrack,  here is another brilliant and funny spoof  written by Robin Thede (the brains behind the video Every Little Step w/Mike Tyson). Wayne Brady, Affion Crockett, Chris Spencer, and some female puppets?? With a concoction of comedic talent like these, you can only imagine what you are gonna get. I wonder if Tyler Perry sees this will he think that it’s funny?  It’s hilarious!!

Someone needs to give Robin her own show.

You gotta love it…just because.

Lalah Hathaway @ BHCP Live!

Lalah Hathaway Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza

First,  it was Shelia E, then it was Rashaan Patterson, and now,  Lalah Hathaway and all for FREEEEEEE!!!!! If you weren’t knowing, Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza  has put together a series of free live concerts every Thursday (affectionately known as BHCP Live!) for all locals and not so local. This Thursday the stage will be graced by Donny’s baby girl, Ms. Lalah Hathaway. Make sure not to miss this one, it’s bound to be a great show. You know, if it’s free it’s what…ME!!!!

* A big SHOUT OUT  to Lalah and her team for being on, what I think to be the illest tour for this year….Prince’s “Welcome 2 America” Tour!!!!! MSG is already SOLD OUT!!!!

Night Catches Us

I am looking over my shoulder as I write this post. I, well we (me and my sister), had the opportunity to see this film back in June of this year, at the African Black Film Festival and being part of the festival, it was free. That’s not the issue.  It was one of those crazy weekends full of must see indie movies, high energy entertainment (D-Nice and Idris Elba shut down LIV at the Fontainebleau), and I can’t leave out all the excitement that the FIFA World Cup was giving off. With all those distractions, I may have accidentally misinterpreted the time wrong and…well, damn it we missed it! Ok, I said it so there. I dropped the ball.  I have to admit my sister was not a happy movie-goer about that.  See, we grew up in an entertainment family (film and music) and we get a little competitive when it comes to seeing a film or hearing music way before another family members does (I know, crazy right?).

When we returned home to our father bragging about how great this movie is, with stellar performances from Anthony Mackie (please DON’T sleep on him), Kerry Washington, an unbelievable musical score by The Roots, noteworthy performances from the other cast members (I see you Tariq Trotter), and let’s not touch on all of the awards/recognition it has received, this surely didn’t help my case out one bit.  So, you’ll understand why I’m covering my back; this might bring up some unresolved feelings from my sis.

Anyway, the good thing about my little mishap is, the film premiered on the 29th of this month on, On Demand and on iTunes before it’s December 13th release. There is a price attached to it but hey,  I am all about supporting Black Films, Black Filmmakers, and Black Actors. Hopefully First Weekend Club will have a screening for this soon. If you haven’t joined/signed up to become a member with First Weekend Club (see “4 All Filmgoers“) make sure you do after reading this post. This is a “MUST SEE”.

Heavy Rotation…

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Had to change the rotation up this week. These joints have definitely been pouring out of my speakers lately. If you don’t have any of them, pick them up, if you have them, dust em off,  pull em out and turn up the volume.

K’NAAN Troubadour: This cat is flava all day to me. Proud of his Somalian heritage, K’naan aka The Dusty Foot Philosopher doesn’t hesitate in letting you know that he keeps it gangsta Somali style but with flare and class. I got a chance to catch one of his live shows about a year ago (thanks Sol Guy!) and he has CRAZY supportive fans. Most people’s favorite is the anthem joint “Wavin’ Flag” but I have to agree with the cats over at Okayplayer, mine is “America” where he teeter-tots his flow from Arabic to English f/w Mos Def & Chali 2Na (2 more of Hip Hop’s paralyzing lyricists)!  This was one of my best holiday present last year, maybe cause my kid gave it to me.

Prince-The Hits 1: Do I really have to go into detail about this one? If so, with all due respect, kindly leave the premises… Thanks for stopping by. SMH

Esperanza Spalding-Esperanza: I first was introduced to Esperanza Spalding at the Playboy Jazz Festival 2 years ago (’08).  Big jazzy sultry voice, big up right bass, and big hair; all in a little package. Scats, a sprinkle of Hip-Hop tones, Spanish, Portuguese and English vocals all with soulful jazz sabor. You’ll fall in love with this astonishingly talented young lady.  Esperanza’s relationship with her up right bass keeps Jazz alive for the younger crowd.

Average White Band– AWB: Someone start a Soul Train Line quick! When I was a kid and Moms and Pops threw this on, I had no idea what the band members looked like, let alone where they came from. All I knew was the funk that was coming out of the speakers made my Saturday morning chores go by a lot faster than usual. Scottish funk, who would’ve thunk it? “Pick Up The Pieces” still holds it top spot for all time jams but since it’s been back in rotation, I’ve got “There’s Always Someone Waiting” on repeat. Sick guitars…

*just creating the soundtrack to my life.