Posts Tagged ‘someactualtalent’

Lenny Kravitz - Black and White America

That’s the sound of a man satisfied.

Since watching the teaser on YouTube, which showed 90 seconds of Lenny Kravitz (with sole collaborator Craig Ross) build the bass-and-synth masterwork “Superlove”, I knew I had to hear the full song. Slightly cheesy lyrics aside, it’s well worth the wait. And now, having finally sated that six-month hunger, we can finally assess Black and White America as a complete album.

Lenny Kravitz isn’t an album artist. Then again, he isn’t much of a singles artist either. And if the critics are to be believed, he isn’t Rock, and he’s not quite Soul. Born biracial into the strictly segregated American record industry, where Black equals Soul/R&B and White for some reason equals Rock n’ Roll, he’s been forced to exist in a strange nether region between the two worlds. Yes, he’s kinda like Saffronia that way



So, full disclosure: I love Mariah Carey. I think she’s a brilliantly talented vocalist, songwriter, and producer, and that makes up for her bizarre affectations and mannerisms that, frankly, do her no favors.

Also, I’ve pointed out in the past how her fixation on chart dominance makes her forego originality in favor of formula. Some would argue she did it once or twice in the ’90s, but I doubt any will dispute that since her comeback, the Ghost of Singles Past has been stuck in “We Belong Together” mode whenever she called him up for a recording session.


Greg Giraldo Dead at 44

Posted: September 29, 2010 by RA in Uncategorized

It’s almost become a cliche to be a drug-addicted comic. Still, I loved Greg Giraldo. Dude was hilarious, and unapologetically filthy without appealing to idiotic stereotypes or childish jingoism to make his point.

I have nothing else to say right now — It’s late, I’m drunk. Greg would be proud.

Okay, so I’ve had a mancrush on Tom Ford since his days turning Gucci into the sickest fashion house on the scene (and the template for Rock & Republic’s poor-man’s-Gucci aesthetic). The man understands the art of sexifying a woman in ways that make me question his sexuality. (Much like my fawning over him makes me question mine.)

Anyway, as I don’t have an ad airing during this year’s VMAs (and I’m not twelve), I won’t be watching this year. But apparently, I’m not the only one missing the party. Beyoncé and a bevy of gorgeous women of different ages (Julianne Moore could still get it) are at Tom Ford’s secret presentation this week, marking his much-whispered-about return to womenswear. (more…)

So, I’m sure we’ve all heard “No More”, the first bit of new music from Ron Isley since he had to… go away. I was fairly ho-hum about it. (Though glad to hear he’d left the now-tired “Mr. Bigg” posturing in the big house. Big house… get it?)

 And then comes his cover of the Bacharach classic “(They Long to Be) Close to You”, featuring none other than Lauryn Hill. Sure, it’s a classic, beautifully written song. And lushly produced, sweetly subtle performance by two incredible artists. But I found myself wanting badly to like it more than I did (and I love a slow burner more than anything else).

It was then that I decided I was probably suffering from Lauryn Hill Denial Disorder.

Still, maybe I’m wrong here. You decide.

So, I resisted the urge to join the chorus of keystrokes reacting to Prince’s declaration that the internet is “over.” Whenever an artist makes such a statement, America –public and punditry alike — reverts to a childlike state of literalism, unable to imagine a meaning deeper than the very words on the page. It serves their overall purpose of mocking them as crotchety old men confused and frightened by the internet, unable to end the reign of Auto-Tune.

Forget the fact that Prince Rogers Nelson (or “the baddest motherfucker to slip on a pair of size 6 heels” to you) pioneered the practice of distributing music and connecting with fans via the web. Forget that he won a Webby for that shit. Forget that, at 5’2″ and in eyeliner, he’ll take your girl with a single raised eyebrow. Yeah, forget all that. He’s just an old geezer afraid of teh internetz.



onLoop 7.7.10

Posted: July 7, 2010 by RA in Music, On Loop
Tags: , ,

Zo!, Eric Roberson, Darien Brockington, Big Pooh – “This Could Be the Night” – 2010
Zo!, recently signed to Foreign Exchange’s new music imprint, ushers us into summer with this seriously feel-good cut featuring Eric Roberson, Darien Brockington, and Rapper Big Pooh. I heard this a while back, but it only recently infiltrated my brain. Now I walk through NYC with a smile/bounce combo that could get me killed.

Must be the heatwave.

Kelly Rowland – “Each Other” – 2010
Sure, “Commander” is both the lead single and her declaration to the world that she finally wants to be a solo artist, but quite frankly I could take it or leave it. Now, when I got my ears on “Each Other”, I knew she had found her groove. It’s quite simply the sexiest thing Kelly Rowland has ever done.

Must be the heatwave.