Music, Movies, Concerts and Shows

Concert Review: The “King & Queen of Hearts” Tour Hits Dallas’ AAC

Concert Review: The “King & Queen of Hearts” Tour Hits Dallas’ AAC

| December 4, 2016 | Reply

Pain, passion and partying all the way through—- clouds and chilly rain may have loomed outdoors, but thousands of fans enjoyed the heartwarming soul of newcomer Ro James and co-headliners Maxwell and Mary J. Blige, who regaled the nearly packed-out Dallas’ American Airlines Center on Friday night. Mary J. Blige was the first up of […]

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Joe’s “#MyNameIsJoeThomas,” CD Review/Preview Link

Joe’s “#MyNameIsJoeThomas,” CD Review/Preview Link

| November 21, 2016 | Reply

……What the sixteen tracks will demonstrate, beyond Joe’s trademark finesse and sincerity, is his understated intensity and ease with a variety of styles and subject matter; Damo Farmer, Derrick “D.O.A.” Allen and Gerald Issac anchor his explorations into both the familiar and unfamiliar. We know Joe is proficient with the boudoir skills (“Lay You Down”) […]

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A Tribe Called Quest’s “We Got It From Here…..” CD Preview/Review Link

A Tribe Called Quest’s “We Got It From Here…..” CD Preview/Review Link

| November 14, 2016 | Reply

……In comparison to their pedestrian (and likely obligatory) 1998 release, ironically entitled The Love Movement, We Got It crackles with energy and inspiration. Phife’s pitch mellowed with age, but his familiar cadence won’t be denied, matching Q-Tip rhyme for rhyme on the urgent opener, “The Space Program” and rolling into Jamaican patois on the blistering […]

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Relationships, Love and Life

When Mediocrity Goes Viral: Dating In The Era of Text & Chill

When Mediocrity Goes Viral: Dating In The Era of Text & Chill

| October 29, 2016 | 1 Reply

The first time I heard Alicia Keys, I was with my mother. She’s not half the music fan that her daughter turned out to be, but that didn’t keep Mama from getting wind of Keys’ first single, “Fallin,’” and playing it every. chance. she. got. In fact, she played it so often and so incessantly […]

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What I Say: Things I Know For Sure

What I Say: Things I Know For Sure

| October 1, 2016 | Reply

“I’m not a fool, and I’m not a scientist…..but I know some things.” If that line seems familiar, it’s because you heard it in one of my favorite films, Jumping The Broom, or you read it from the front of my blog page. Either way, the phrase is one of my favorites and summarizes where […]

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Can We Live: When Black Women Are Shielding, Yet Targeted By, Black Men

Can We Live: When Black Women Are Shielding, Yet Targeted By, Black Men

| August 6, 2016 | Reply

Picture it: Dallas, 2001. I was settling into my singleness and adjusting to the demands of working and raising my then-toddler son. Slowly dealing, but still feeling the weight of it all, but I sought solace in my friends, my family and my go-to elixir of choice, music. Mary J. Blige’s “No More Drama” and […]

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What's Going Down in Popular Culture

Concert Review: The “King & Queen of Hearts” Tour Hits Dallas’ AAC

Concert Review: The “King & Queen of Hearts” Tour Hits Dallas’ AAC

| December 4, 2016 | Reply

Pain, passion and partying all the way through—- clouds and chilly rain may have loomed outdoors, but thousands of fans enjoyed the heartwarming soul of newcomer Ro James and co-headliners Maxwell and Mary J. Blige, who regaled the nearly packed-out Dallas’ American Airlines Center on Friday night. Mary J. Blige was the first up of […]

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Talkin’ Loud, Sayin’ Nothin’: How Symbols & Soundbites Trivialize The Struggle

Talkin’ Loud, Sayin’ Nothin’: How Symbols & Soundbites Trivialize The Struggle

| December 3, 2016 | Reply

A new month has arrived, a new year is around the corner and for some, 2017 can’t get here fast enough. Natural diasters, escalating civil unrest and a contentious election campaign have left many with frayed nerves and perpetual headaches, particularly as they imagine what changes the new administration and the president-elect’s cabinet choices could […]

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Play Review: “Love Jones: The Musical”

Play Review: “Love Jones: The Musical”

| November 29, 2016 | Reply

Romance, drama, music and the big city: nearly 20 years ago, African-American movie goers fell in love with Love Jones, a 1997 film starring Larenz Tate and Nia Long. As Darius Lovehall and Nina Mosley, they enraptured audiences, playing two young Chicago-area professionals keen on their jobs, deep into the arts and hot for each […]

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Health Beauty and Empowerment

Lamman Rucker: Heart Health, Community Outreach & “Greenleaf”

Lamman Rucker: Heart Health, Community Outreach & “Greenleaf”

| October 15, 2016 | Reply

According to The Center for Disease Control, there is bad news and good news when it comes to heart disease. The bad news: Latino Americans and African Americans are at higher risk for heart disease and in comparison to Caucasian men, women and people of color are treated for the ailment at lesser rates. The […]

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Tamera Nalls: Empowering Girls For An Adverse World

Tamera Nalls: Empowering Girls For An Adverse World

| September 17, 2016 | Reply

Televised cat fights, near-nude magazine covers and middle-aged women trashing one another for ratings and ‘likes.’ Thanks to tabloid-filled talk shows and the omnipresence of social media, today’s teenagers have an abundance of poor examples and role models. While parents can’t shield vulnerable minds from all negativity, they can guide their children by exemplifying positive […]

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Can We Live: When Black Women Are Shielding, Yet Targeted By, Black Men

Can We Live: When Black Women Are Shielding, Yet Targeted By, Black Men

| August 6, 2016 | Reply

Picture it: Dallas, 2001. I was settling into my singleness and adjusting to the demands of working and raising my then-toddler son. Slowly dealing, but still feeling the weight of it all, but I sought solace in my friends, my family and my go-to elixir of choice, music. Mary J. Blige’s “No More Drama” and […]

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Culture and Politics

Kaepernick, The Anthem & Unpacking White Privilege

Kaepernick, The Anthem & Unpacking White Privilege

| September 3, 2016 | 4 Replies

In our home, even after Darius’ graduation, three students remain—-Layla, Nia and myself. Every morning, after our daughters are dropped off at school, I’m pushing though my own set of online classes. One of them is “Multicultural Perspectives.” As I opened the file for Chap. Two this week, the assignment:”Watch the included video links about […]

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Loving The Fake, Loathing The Real: Columbusing, Whiteness & Black Beauty

Loving The Fake, Loathing The Real: Columbusing, Whiteness & Black Beauty

| March 5, 2016 | 2 Replies

For most parents, it’s an automatic and instinctual practice: we gaze into the faces of our babies and fall in love. From the tops of their heads to the bottoms of their feet, we gaze in wonder at the innocence we’ve been entrusted with and hope that they will one day embrace themselves the way […]

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Straight Outta Logic: Diversity, Dollars and The Impact of a “Colorblind” Academy

Straight Outta Logic: Diversity, Dollars and The Impact of a “Colorblind” Academy

| January 23, 2016 | Reply

In a pivotal scene from last year’s smash biopic Straight Outta Compton, members of the hip-hop group NWA face the press after a performance of their most controversial hit, “[Expletive} Tha Police,” allegedly incited a riot in Detroit.”Your songs glamorize the lifestyle of gangs, guns and drugs,” one reporter says, but is quickly corrected by […]

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Other Good Stuff

Rollin’ With Ray-Ray: An Evening With Raphael Saadiq (2009)

Rollin’ With Ray-Ray: An Evening With Raphael Saadiq (2009)

| November 4, 2016 | 2 Replies

Chill, coy and of course, mad cool—-I have been a fan of Tony Toni Tone since they hit the music scene in the late 80s/early 90s and met them for the first time when I worked the request line at a Dallas radio station. I was on my way out the door when I saw […]

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“Eric Benet,” CD Preview and Review Link

“Eric Benet,” CD Preview and Review Link

| October 10, 2016 | Reply

….In the span of 12 tracks (13 if the bonus Tamia duet is included), Benet and his longtime collaborator, Demonte Posey, stay true to his proven template of classically-rendered instrumentation anchoring modern twists on love and relationships. Eric is traditionally soulful throughout, yet incorporates elements of other genres that invigorate and expand his style: “Can’t […]

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Dave Hollister’s “The MANuscript,” MOC Preview/ST CD Review Link

Dave Hollister’s “The MANuscript,” MOC Preview/ST CD Review Link

| September 10, 2016 | Reply

…..A Blackstreet alumnus, Cali-based pastor and now performing in touring stage play adaptation of the 1990s film Love Jones, Dave Hollister’s gospel-edged croon is one that we’ve kept in steady rotation since his unforgettable cameo on Tupac Shakur’s 1988 smash, “Brenda’s Got a Baby.” Always one to keep his catalog authentic enough for his peers […]

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