Monday, November 24, 2014

Female Role Models?

Recently, I have been seeing all these videos and images of women, like the ones above, on the internet and TV, and realized that this is what young women are watching. They are looking at these images and thinking that in order to be a successful woman you have to show your ASSets. It's really disappointing to me that these women, who have huge followings are sending messages that in order to gain popularity you have have a huge ass and big boobs and flaunt it. They are not sending the message that being smart and talented is something to achieve. Then people wonder why high school students are going out and getting plastic surgery. Think about it, Kim Kardashian is popular because she had a sex tape with Ray J and now for having a crazy body and not being shy about it. I get if you have a dope body be proud but there should be balance because most women don't look like this. Photoshop is a beautiful thing and most young women don't know these pictures are enhanced in any way, which then makes them think they need to not eat and get surgery so they can look like that. And they believe that the most important thing in life is the way you look, how many likes you get on instagram, and how many followers you can get by taking sexy selfies.

As a woman in the music industry, it makes it harder for me to be taken seriously. Most men think that women will flaunt their bodies and do whatever it is to get ahead because they don't pride themselves on their minds or achievements. I have seen it first hand and it's really disappointing. However, I have been really lucky to have worked for very strong, beautiful, talented, and smart women in the industry that don't use their bodies to get ahead. They work their asses off and they get shit done. Those are the women that should be on the cover of magazines not just big booty ho's. When you look at Nicki's videos you don't listen to her rapping but you pay attention to her body. You want her to dance around in skimpy outfits and you don't care about what she's rapping about, which is nothing in "Anaconda". It's actually garbage but it's gotten so big because of the video. Then you have Iggy and JLo ,who are known for their asses as well, who did a song, "Booty" which is garbage as well. But the video of their asses and their performances make the song popular.  Again, I'm not against being sexy and showing off what you got, but I think the media should also promote women who might not have those bodies but are smart, strong, talented women doing right in their industries, that are confident enough to not flaunt their bodies. 

To me, especially for this generation, that have access to everything, we need to give them positive role models to look up to. We have to give them hope that even if you don't look like Kim K, Niki, Iggy or JLo that you can still be sexy without showing it off and that they should be able to love themselves for who they are. We need to let them know that being you is good enough and trying to enhance your body isn't worth it, because you can make it with more than just your body but with your mind and achievements. So for all you strong, smart, and beautiful women out there that have respect for their bodies, show yourselves and be that role model for this generation. WE NEED YOU!

Friday, August 1, 2014

What happened to hip hop?

I remember when I was younger and spoke to adults about music, they always mentioned music from the era they grew up in. I was actually really lucky to be growing up in the 90's. I think that was the golden era of hip hop, and some people might disagree, but if you really listen to all the hip hop that came out during that time it was fucken amazing. Working in the music industry and having to listen to all the bullshit that people are putting out now makes me sad. I think about Biggie and Tupac and I wonder if they were still around if they would be making the same crap music or would they stay true to their craft? There are a lot of rappers out there that make music for the money and not for the culture. I even see these "old school" hip hop artists that are trying to revamp their styles so they can make that money and become popular again. NOW don't get me wrong you have to make music that appeals to the public but I don't think you need to dumb down your lyrics to do that. When you mention that you like rap or you know rappers, people have a very distinct thought of what it is, BLING, ho's, money, and ignorant. Some rappers are exactly like that and they do it because that's what sells and it's disappointing.

Then you see the struggling MC's out there who are all about the culture and won't degrade their music for the money. These are the artists that aren't making "pop" hits and no one listens to their lyrics and what these artists stand for. It just sucks that these artists can't have an amazing song and make money off of it because people can't twerk to it. Look at Shmurda and how his career popped off... This dude put out one video on Youtube and it turned out to be the hottest thing since Rihanna came out in the see-through dress. That song ain't shit. Yeah I said it. I'm not going to pretend that he deserves the fame he received because he did a little wiggle in the video. That's not what hip hop is about but apparently it's the new shit and yes everyone from Beyonce has co-signed him, but seriously, did they co-sign because he's lyrical? NOOOO!!! He's famous because of the stupid dance that everyone is doing.  It's not about his music it's about how fun it is to do his dance at parties and on stage. Then the young people of this generation see it. They think this is what rap music is about. If I didn't listen to indie hip hop I would HATE hip hop.

So I have to give it up to the blogs that do promote indie artists and let the generation know there are more real hip hop artists out there that care about the culture and understand it. They know where their roots are and they take that into consideration when they make their music. Yes, Shmurda might be fun to shake your ass to when you're out in the club with your friends, but when it comes to real hip hop give me some Oddisee. Let me know when you listen to him and hear what REAL hip hop is.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Festivals, Festivals, and more Festivals... Is it worth it?

I go to a ton of festivals which I love and hate. My whole life revolves around music, now whether or not I'm a HUGE fan of some of the artist that I see is a completely different story. I do have a huge soft spot for indie hip hop, so going to some of these festivals are not really appealing to my so-called preference. But as I love to say I don't discriminate and I'm always down to check out new music, especially live music. So in the past few weeks I've been really lucky to go to 3 major festivals (2 for free!!!). These 3 festivals have nothing to do with each other, so it's pretty funny to think about the crowds that go to them. Every single festival I've been to has douche bags and slutty girls but I guess that's inevitable. These youngin's that go to festivals are not about the music. It's a status thing, they want to dress up and look like they're being part of something "cool" so they can post it up on their social media sites to let everyone know that they're doing something interesting and popular. 

At EDC most kids dress up like crazy, cracked out blow up dolls that are so out of their mind that they don't know if they're on the same planet as everyone else. I get it, I was a "party kid" back in the day, but seriously? I loved the music and I didn't have to be on crazy amounts of drugs to enjoy myself. I wanted to dance and be part of the culture. I hung out with the crazy street party kids in NYC and went to underground shows that no one heard about. I loved listening to beats and feeling it through my body, that's why I went to these "parties".  Plus I love hard beats that are closest to the hip hop sound that I can bounce around and dance to, so I'm all about drum and bass. For EDC, I was really excited to see Bassnectar, who fucken KILLED IT but after a little while it started sounding the same, as it usually does. Anyways, now you go to a rave it's not the same the culture, it's not about the music, it's about what you wear or what you seem not to wear. 

Keeping in line with women wearing scantly clad outfits, Summer Jam wasn't any better. I know mainstream hip hop has this "ghetto fabulous" mentality AND shit it was showing at Summer Jam. I love that women have self esteem and think they're the hottest shit around but GOD DAMN some of these women looked ridiculous. Their heels were so tall they couldn't walk, their pants were SO tight that their muffin tops were out in all their glory, and there were boob to stomach ratios that favored the stomach rather than the boobs. It seems that this also wasn't about the music it was about saying you were there. While I was there I got a chance to talk to this very young girl who I believe might of been drunk or just really stupid. I couldn't tell but she told me she wasn't even interested in the music she just wanted to be there because she thought it would be cool. That in itself made me sad. I know I said I don't listen to the music but I was excited to check out Action Bronson, The Roots and of course see what Nicki had to bring to the table. The sound system was SO WHACK that I couldn't even hear anything. The mic's were fucked up and since it's at a football stadium there was a lot of echoing. It was horrible, and during The Root's set the mic cut off and they didn't fix it in time so I could hear the rest of the set. I was really disappointed especially since they got the money and they've been doing this at this venue for years now. SMH! Not what someone who's there for the music wanted to hear or better yet not hear. 

I've been to a lot of festivals in and out of the tri-state area but never in a different country. So going to NXNE in Toronto was pretty exciting for me. I didn't go to a lot of the shows at the festival but I like the fact the festival was to promote more independent artists. Unfortunately, the showcase that I did end up going to (El Da Sensei, Soul Khan, Audible Doctor, and Mecca Godzilla), the crowd did not know how to act. The artists that were on the showcase handled the crazy and rude crowd with ease and some hilarity. The sound system was also shit and even with all the mess that the artists had to deal with they all killed it. This is the first time I've been to Toronto since I was a child and I obviously never went out during that time. So I have no idea what the deal is with the people there. I'm not sure if this is the regular thing or it was just that night. Everything that night blew my fucken mind. There were people that thought in America you can sleep in your car and then get rich the next day... and gave an example of Tyler Perry... umm... NO COMMENT. There was also a chick that was so drunk and going up to people and asking them crazy questions (are you Italian to a Jewish guy) or trying to give girls money and hugging them (she was asking to get abducted). There were people dressed in leather shorts with a leather jacket in 70 degree weather. It was just crazy. People were definitely nice but it was seriously the weirdest place I've visited and I've traveled the world so it confused me. Then it hit me... Toronto's mayor is a crackhead... So yes the people in the city would be CRAZY. The only thing I had a problem with was that there was one showcase that got shut down and the poor artists that were there for that one show were shit out of luck. And it wasn't like they were from Toronto, they had to fly out and stay in a hotel. It was fucked up. I don't know what happened with them but I hope that NXNE did something for them. At least at this festival the people were way more into music and not trying to be sexy and cool. I appreciated and respect that. So I would definitely go back, it was pretty awesome for music lovers.

All in all I love going to festivals and I'm going to keep going regardless of all the young people I have to deal with. I love the music, dancing, and experiencing all the craziness. It makes me feel some sort of way and I don't think I can describe it, but I'll try. It's like being on a drug, there's a high I get listening to really dope music and seeing others enjoy it as much as I do. All I know is that the feeling is the reason why I'm in the music industry. So shout out to all the artists and all the people that put these festivals together because that shit is not easy.  To wrap this post up, go to a festival with your survival kit out and get ready to spend a whole day sweating, sitting on grass or concrete and hanging out with douche bags. BUT  remember that you're there to see your favorite artist KILL IT on stage, which makes it all worth it.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Hip Hop is dead??? Not at the A3C Festival!!

Now I can tell you details about my trip to Atlanta, like my 14 hour drive with 5 of the members of BBAS, how I got on stage to see Ghostface and Sheek Louch, or how I saw a ton of artists that I respect in the hip hop world in the same hotel that I was in, NO I'm not going to talk about that. What really got me inspired to write this is because of one specific performer. I won't put him on blast but let's just say I was disgusted by his performance. Now for me to say something like that is a BIG thing because nothing really disgust me not even farting in a car with the windows up... hahaha... ok maybe that is disgusting but besides the point.

A3C Festival to me is a place for indie artists to really shine, everyone there appreciating the art and culture of real hip hop. This isn't a festival where you'll see some whack ass mainstream artists, this is a place where you'll see indie artists putting their heart and soul on the stage and creating music that doesn't jeopardize their art. With that in mind, you think going to these shows the artists you came to see would be happy that you as a fan have chosen to see them perform. This was my first year at A3C and I heard that it was better the years before because the shows were all in one space and this year they all were in completely different venues. So you would have to take a taxi or suck it up and walk and I think because of that a lot of the smaller acts didn't get as much traffic as they wanted or should have, but at the same time those fans really wanted to be out there to see them.

I went to my first show the day that I got in after driving 14 hours (extremely tired and not in the best mood) and went to one of the smaller venues to show support and rock the fuck out. Almost all the artists that I saw were dope and gave the crowd everything that they got, even if the crowd started dwindling away. They did their best and made the most out of the situation and joked around with the crowd.  As I was walking outside,  I heard the last artist come on... Let's just say a lot of the crowd disappeared and there might of been a handful of people left (literally like 5-6). When the artist came out he had the audacity to say, "This is the worst show I've ever done." As a fan that's extremely insulting. If I was there to see him, drove 14 hours, and payed money to see the show I would have punched that dude in the face. It's the most ungrateful thing to say to fans that are waiting there to see you perform. These people are the ones that support your art and for you to shit on them is fucked up. As an artist you should thank the fans that stayed to see you and give them the best fucken show that they ever saw. Don't be a fucken bitch and make your fans feel like they aren't important. It doesn't matter what level artist you are you should not feel entitled to have a certain amount of people in your crowd, you should appreciate that people are paying and waiting to see you perform.

To have an artist who is that unappreciative and inconsiderate is a shame. This festival showcases REAL hip hop and artists should be grateful to be chosen to be put on the bill because not everyone gets asked to perform. To have someone that is a bitch really fucks up the experience. Every show that I have ever seen the artists always says thank you to their crowd and tries to show their appreciation, no matter how small the crowd. Even Ghostface had fans come up on stage and rap verses with him. To me it was a way to give back to his fans that support him and give them an opportunity be part of his performance. That's what you should be doing as an artist even if there is only one person in the crowd.

Minus that one performer, A3C was amazing, even though I only got to stay for 2 days.

A3C gave me hope in hip hop, it made me realize that even though I program mainstream music at my job, I should still push the music that I love. Sometimes I don't get a chance to listen to all the dope hip hop music out there because I'm so caught up in my work (which is sad because I work in the music industry). But to see all those artists trying to make it and putting their heart out on the stage is amazing. It gives me hope that there are artists that really want to stay true to hip hop and not do this for the money. The indie hip hop scene is such a culture and a community, to be able to be part of it makes me feel excited and hopeful. Maybe mainstream isn't ready for the realness of these artists but I hope one day they will because a lot of them should get the recognition that they deserve. People at my job tell me that I need to start giving up on the indie hip hop scene but I can't, I will support and listen to these artists until I can't hear them anymore. A big shout out to A3C and all the performers (minus that one dude) for the inspiration and giving me hope in hip hop music again.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Dating someone in the music industry... especially an artist

Sometimes on the weekend I love googling stupid shit and sometimes I google about dating an artist/musician. I am in a relationship with an artist and it gets really hard and it's not like dating a normal person,  I get that. I've been with my bf for 4 years and sometimes I want to strangle him and walk out but then I realize that I need to take a moment and understand that I'm not in a typical relationship. I've read a bunch of articles with "tips" on how to date a musician. I really don't think people need "tips" I think people need to learn how to understand and get some advice. Everyone's relationship is different and you can't make general rules for dating someone... It's stupid. I also think my relationship is really different since I work in the music industry and my bf is an artist.

We met because we both worked at the same company.  I worked in the office and he worked at the store. I still work in the music industry as a music programmer and he's an artist trying to get his music played. People automatically think that we should make the perfect match but it's not that perfect... Nothing is perfect. I see what goes on at shows and I know the business side of it, so yes I do understand but it doesn't mean that I don't have feelings. So yes, I get jealous, yes, I want more time and yes, I believe that I deserve a lot because of all the shit that I put up with (no money, no time to ourselves, never being able to plan anything in case he has something come up). Then you may ask why the fuck are you putting up with all this shit if you don't seem to be happy, and the reason for me is because I love him. Yes, it's cheesy but sometimes in a relationship where you have to make A LOT of sacrifices... Love, trust and respect is all you have. 

It's not easy dating someone that's trying to be an artist and live off his art. You have to be able to be independent, understanding, supportive, and willing to be second to his music. You have to be willing to work through HIS schedule and that's hard because as a woman you think everything should revolve around you and it's not like that when you're dating an artist. You have to be selfless, it's like having a child, but you also need to know when to open your mouth and let your bf know that he may be fuckin up. You can't be a pushover or kiss his ass because being a strong woman is important in ANY relationship. So if you're not willing to understand the dynamics of dating an artist then this kind of relationship isn't for you. I think the best advice is to have your own life and be busy so then you're not at home alone sitting and waiting for your bf to come back from gigs, practices, being in the studio, shows or networking parties.

Also, for me I have a great group of friends that are all the wives of my bf's group that are super supportive. We're all really busy but we try and get together to talk and help each other because sometimes you need to get out your frustration and have that group of females that really UNDERSTAND what you're going through. Again, it's a different type of relationship so not every woman is going to understand what you're going through and give you the best advice.

I know this was a long post but I just wanted to say that having a relationship is difficult and having one with an artist is even harder. There are no "tips" that can help you but just know that people can date artists and survive it's just a hard long road to get there and if you both really love, trust and are supportive of each others dreams, hopefully it will all work out.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Been on a hiatus...

I haven't really been on my blog for a while. I think it's because I've been working on other blogs so I've fell off this one. BUT i've decided that I need to start thinking about ME more. Yes, be more conceited because as someone once told me, "No one is looking out for you so you have to look out for yourself." I also think that I've been scared of doing things alone and failing. Failing has never been an option in my mind, but i have to grow up and realize that people fail all the time it's what you do after that makes the difference. I'm going to start on my venture and work on my ideas and not look back.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Check out he First Episode of B-Side Anthems feat. The Audible Doctor shot and edited by Civil Productions

You know that I love BBAS especially The Audible Doctor. This interview gets real personal with it and there's not a lot of interviews that do that for Indie Hip Hop Artists. This is the shit!

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