All Articles Tagged "alicia keys"
Welcome to the “Work It!” column, where we take a look at business innovation of every kind.
You want to be an innovator? Awesome! Where do you start? That’s harder to tackle. Wanting to innovate in your field is admirable, but good ideas can be hard to come by. Artists and businesswomen alike are searching for the secret to creativity.
It may seem like a contradiction, but the key to changing the present can lie in looking at what’s already been done. Take a cue from your favorite hip-hop track; remix the past to innovate for the future.
Maya Lake, designer of the fashion line Boxing Kitten, is a great case study of the business remix.
The fashion industry is one of the most competitive sectors in the market. Studies show 80 percent of retail clothing businesses fail within the first five years. So, how did a no-name designer turn her college senior thesis into a brand adorned by the likes of Solange, Alicia Keys, and Rihanna?
“Melee of Then and Now”
Boxing Kitten’s website describes the collection as “a vibrant melee of Then and Now.” Lake pulls from the past; merging vintage styles with African wax block print fabric to create a look that snaps necks and turns heads. “The initial point of departure for the collection was envisioning what two women — a woman involved in the Civil Rights movement and a woman involved in the black pride movement — would look like combined together,” Lake told Essence.
“I took different style elements of each woman, like the classic and conservative lady-like silhouettes, and the African fabrics that women in the black pride movement wore.” The result is a collection that continues to stand out among competitors who rarely get more ethnic than tribal print.
Lake launched Boxing Kitten with the bare minimum for a fashion line: a website, samples for production, and a cool idea. Word of mouth landed Boxing Kitten around Erykah Badu’s frame in a spread for Giant magazine in 2008. The line soon found it’s way into music video director and Lake fan, Melina Matsoukas’ productions for Rihanna’s “Rude Boy” and Alicia Keys and Beyoncé’s mythical “Put It In a Love Song”.
If you’re drawing your inspiration from the past, what’s to stop someone from drawing inspiration from you? Nothing. That’s the nature of the game. And Lake isn’t worried about it. She told Madame Noire, “I think the only thing I can do is keep moving forward, keep doing what I’m doing, because no one’s going to do it the way I’m doing it.”
Lake echoes the words of poet, critic, and editor T.S. Eliot: “Immature poets imitate; mature poets steal; bad poets deface what they take, and good poets make it into something better, or at least something different.” At this point, nothing in the world is completely original. Every “new” thing is a remix of something that’s been done before.
Before you go stealing everybody’s ideas, keep these rules from artist and author Austin Kleon’s book, Steal Like An Artist, in mind:
C. Cleveland is a freelance writer and content strategist in New York City, perfecting living the fierce life at The Red Read. She is at your service on Twitter (@CleveInTheCity) and Facebook (/MyReadIsRed).
We’re highlighting Pioneers in the Game every day here on Madame Noire. Click here to meet all of our salutes.
When Alicia Keys was named global creative director for BlackBerry just a couple of weeks ago, people were quick to point out that the singer had declared herself an “iPhone junky” a year ago. During that BlackBerry event, where the BlackBerry 10 platform was unveiled along with two new phones, she joined company CEO Thorsten Heins on stage to crow about BlackBerry.
So what a shocker then that another tweet was posted on her account from an iPhone yesterday.
(We took a quick look and couldn’t find the @Drake tweet she’s talking about here.)
Seems weird that someone would hack Alicia Keys’ account to simply post something about Drake, so we’ll have to share Business Insider’s skepticism on this one.
Do you think this hacking happened? And does it even matter?
While I might be looking away for reasons I won’t say for fear of Alicia Keys stans coming for me, I must say the woman told us she’s “so bright she can burn your eyes. Better look the other way,” and she appears to be living up to every word of her track “Girl on Fire.”
After singing during President Obama’s Inaugural Ball and performing her own rendition of the “Star Spangled Banner” during the Super Bowl this past Sunday, Alicia Keys has now been named the headlining performer for the NBA All-Star basketball game halftime show.
Fox broke the news, saying Alicia will have all eyes on her during the All-Star event February 17 in Houston. Unlike with Beyonce’s halftime show where way too many details were spilled before the event, so far no one seems to know what’s in store for A. Keys, buuuut I’d be willing to bet my next paycheck “Girl on Fire” will most definitely be on the tracklist — and an extended remix like “Dwywane Wade is on fiiiiiiiyyyyaaaahhhhhh.” Sigh. (Sorry, that song just follows me everywhere I go)
Aside from Alicia, there will also be some other major star power during the game. John Legend will perform the National Anthem and Ne-Yo will sing during the player introductions. Singer Gloria Reuben, who also played in “Lincoln,” will also perform the Canadian anthem.
Looks like the alleged criticism that Alicia was disrespectful to sit during her performance of the National Anthem Sunday isn’t stopping her game at all. I must say, I am still a smidge worried about her hitting some of those notes though.
“Oh-Hay, Have You Sheen?” 10 Of The Best, WORST And Most Head-Scratch Worthy National Anthem Performances EVER
It’s not an easy feat to sing the “Star Spangled Banner” for big games and events. For years, the top singers and performers have been trying their best at it, and while many have been amazing, others…? Not so much. And after watching Alicia Keys try something different with her rendition of the national anthem this past Sunday, we thought we’d go through some of the best of the best, the hottest of the messes and the performances that piqued our interest for different unique reasons. And boy was it fun! Check out these 10 takes on the national anthem and decide if you agree with us about who killed it, who should have sat down somewhere, and who made us think a stepper’s jam version of the “Star Spangled Banner” wouldn’t be so bad…
And no, Roseanne Barr is not on this list because she HAD to be joking…
One Of The Best
In 2002, with her long blonde hair and tiny frame, Mimi stepped on the stage and killed the national anthem (in a good way of course). Her notes were on point (especially the very high one she did when she sang “freeeeeeeeee”), and with the dramatic music done in the background by the band, it was just perfect. And it wouldn’t be a Mariah Carey performance without her signature hand movements. It’s one of the few renditions of the “Star Spangled Banner” that I can listen to as if it’s an actual top 10 hit on the radio.
The raves keep flowing in for Beyonce’s Super Bowl Halftime spectacular, and media experts are predicting that Beyonce probably pulled in the highest ratings ever for a halftime show during Sunday’s Super Bowl.
Now we also learn that Mrs. Carter was also a winner on Twitter. Billboard teamed up with Boston.com’s Brand Bowl and a company called Infomous to track the most talked-about artists on Twitter and the relative sentiment attached to them. The results: Of the more than 756,000 tweets Brand Bowl’s music edition recorded during the game, more than one-third were related to Beyonce. Her halftime show fired up the social media-sphere: 275,633 Tweets, +73% Sentiment and a 73 Score.
One of those Tweets came from First Lady Michelle Obama, who send out a tweet calling Beyonce´s performance “phenomenal.” FLOTUS, who just joined Twitter this year, tweeted: “Watching the #SuperBowl with family & friends. @Beyonce was phenomenal! I am so proud of her! -mo.”
Alicia Keys’s performance of the “Star Spangled Banner” on the piano was also a Twitter favorite. Here are her stats: 30,395 Tweets, +79% Sentiment and 9 Score.
What was your most tweetable moment?
Today was a big day for BlackBerry. They have a new name, a new device, and a new global creative director — Alicia Keys.
When we asked in our earlier post whether people were ready to convert to iPhone or Android, we should’ve noted that there already has been one — the aforementioned global creative director, Alicia Keys.
One year ago almost to the date, Business Insider notes that Keys declared herself an “iPhone junky.” And she’s been tweeting away from her iPhone in the past few days.
From the stage at today’s big BlackBerry event, Keys said she’s “going to work closely with the app designers and developers, the content creators, the retailers and the carriers to really explore this BlackBerry 10 platform and create ideas for its future.”
During her comments, ABC News notes, she admits that she “kinda broke up” in favor of another phone “with a little more bling.” She says that she and BlackBerry are now going steady again, but that also means she’ll have to give up her Instagram addiction. The app isn’t offered on BlackBerry.
According to The Verge, BlackBerry is also trying to woo other big names in entertainment, including writer Neil Gaiman and filmmaker Robert Rodriguez, who will be using the device for a new project. A clip about what the company is calling “The Keep Moving Projects” is ready for you to watch after the jump.
Research In Motion today unveiled its long-awaited BlackBerry 10 operating system and BlackBerry Z10 device , a launch that the company hopes will bring the company back to the forefront of the smartphone market.
With promoted tweets (the image above came from one) and a big event, the company has also announced that it will be known as BlackBerry forever more (RIP RIM) and Alicia Keys will serve as global creative director for the company. The new name comes with new tickers on the NASDAQ (BBRY) and the Toronto Stock Exchange (BB).
The BlackBerry Z10 will run the new operating system, which, ABC News says, will be available in the US in March starting at $199 with a contract (available at AT&T and other carriers). The price will be $599 It does away with the now-iconic BlackBerry keyboard. ABC says, “It’s not a beautiful or elegant phone, but it’s well-made and comfortable to hold.”
There’s also a Blackberry Q10 model that hangs on to the QWERTY keyboard. It will be available around the world starting in April, according to The Chicago Tribune.
“BlackBerry 10 devices are absolutely the best typing experience in the industry. Period,” Mashable quotes Thorsten Heins, CEO of Mashable.
Like bestselling Android and iPhones before it, the key to this phone are the apps. The company just recently announced that it has changed the name of its app store to BlackBerry World, which the company has said will emphasize music and video content.
The article goes on to say that the phone requires some guidance to figure out how to use it (not good) and doesn’t take pictures quite as well as the competition (also not good). Mashable also goes into some detail about all the features and benefits. And you can get more detail about that from the press release announcing the new phone.
Also not positive, Forbes reports that shares of the company dropped on news that people will have to wait for the phone to be available. (The phone will be available sooner in the UK, Canada, and the United Arab Emirates.)
“In the case of BlackBerry, the early commenters have mostly good things to say about the software and the phones, but there also remains widespread skepticism that the phones are revolutionary enough to stop the erosion of the company’s user base, let alone lure current users of Apple and Samsung phones,” writes Forbes’ Eric Savitz.
So folks… will you be converted by this new BlackBerry?
Because One Video And Multiple Remixes Aren’t Enough: Alicia Keys Releases Colorful NEW Video For “Girl On Fire”
As much as I love me some Alicia Keys (she’s just gorgeous isn’t she?), I just can’t with “Girl On Fire.” The original, the remix with Nicki Minaj, the Mary Poppins-inspired video, the performances, the cute version for President Obama–all of it is cool and what not, but at the end of the day, I’m just not as inspired by the song as I think Alicia wants me to be. Seriously, it’s already the new theme song for makeovers of older women on the “Today Show,” and everywhere I go, somebody’s store or some commercial is trying to force it as the new pro-girl anthem. And A. Keys is at the helm of this movement. Maybe that’s why she just released a Japanese version of the video to get her overseas fans to fall in love with it all.
The clip, which is directed by Japanese photographer Mika Ninagawa, showcases Alicia Keys in a room full of beautiful flowers. These plants look to represent women in all shapes and sizes (hence the different colors and types of flowers available) as they light on fire once the chorus drops, signaling a transformation. With her jazzy new haircut and some very interesting outfit changes, Keys belts out the song and gives great face in the video. And I’ll admit, it’s a very visually appealing clip. But I’m ready for her to leave this song behind and push “Listen To Your Heart” or even promote “Brand New Me” a bit more in performances and appearances. Because this song is just not lighting my fire at this point. But what about you? What do you think of the new video? Check it out below and let us know what you think!
We’re barely two months into the year and it’s looking more and more like 2013 will be Alicia Keys’s best year ever! The “Girl On Fire” singer was just appointed as the Global Creative Director of wireless handheld device brand, BlackBerry at the BlackBerry 10 launch event, which took place at Pier 36 in New York City, reports The YBF.
Alicia’s website also features an announcement about the New York native’s freshly appointed corporate position, which reads:
“Just announced today, January 30th 2013- Blackberry appoints Alicia as their Global Creative Director! In her new role, Alicia will work closely with app developers, content creators, retailers, carriers and the entertainment community to further shape and enhance the BlackBerry 10 platform, and inspire creative use through its remarkable capabilities and functionality. From music to books, to film, to apps, Keys will lead the charge of enhancing entertainment consumption and distribution, through the power of BlackBerry 10.”
“Alicia Keys has come to BlackBerry because she believes in the product and technology, and subscribes to our overriding philosophy to “Keep Moving”: to empower people through mobile computing and communications,” said BlackBerry President and CEO Thorsten Heins. “We are excited she will be bringing to us her enormous capabilities, as well as a vast network of relationships in the entertainment, social media and business communities, to help shape our brand and grow our business.”
She took to her Twitter page to personally express her excitement.
“Excited 2 jump right in 2 my new role as Global Creative Director of@Blackberry! #BlackBerry10 #keepmoving #forwardthinking,” she tweeted.
This is a really smooth power move for Alicia. I’m very interested in seeing how she’s going to manage motherhood, her new creative director position and promoting the new album. Something tells me she’ll be just fine. She’s superwoman, remember?
Check the next page for more photographs of Alicia at the BlackBerry 10 launch.
Photos courtesy of WENN + The YBF
Alicia Keys celebrated her 32nd birthday and love was shown via internet from all of her celebrity friends and admirers, fans and her husband, Swizz Beatz. Her husband noted that Keys is a woman who often celebrates others but rarely celebrates herself and he was right. She posted on her Facebook that she was so overwhelmed by the birthday love that she wanted to give the fans something: new music. That’s right, Alicia released “Brand New Me (Part 2)” which is pretty much a remix to her current single. As she noted, the song samples Crystal Waters’ “Gypsy Woman” and she pretty much just changed some of the lyrics to fit the message of her single.
There’s a little bit of hip hop in it so we wouldn’t be surprised if Swizz got his hands on the production.
Keys seems to still be working really hard on promoting her album, Girl on Fire. The album only sold 159,000 copies in its first week and to date, it has sold 478,000 copies. Her last album, The Element of Freedom, sold 417,000 copies in its first week so GOF is definitely her lowest performing album to date. However, album sales as a whole are down so in the bigger scheme of things, it makes sense.
Keys performed at the Inaugural Ball last Monday with yet another version of her single “Girl on Fire,” changing it up to “Obama’s on Fire.” Yes, yes she did. She’ll also be performing the National Anthem at the Super Bowl on February 3rd so if nothing else, she is keeping herself out there.
Anyway, here’s “Brand New Me (Part 2). Check it out:
Well…what do you think? Do you like the original or the remix better?