All Articles Tagged "india arie"
“My Life Changed So Fast That It Wasn’t Enjoyable”: India Arie On The Downside Of Fame, Retiring From Music Twice
For folks on the outside looking in, getting a taste of fame (and the money that usually comes with it) seems either really nice, or really stressful. For someone like India Arie who has lived in the spotlight since dropping the hit “Video” from her critically-acclaimed album Acoustic Soul in 2001, it has been more of the latter. In an interview with the Huffington Post, Arie was honest about the fact that being in the spotlight hasn’t necessarily always been a fun experience for her.
“My life changed so fast that it wasn’t enjoyable. I went from being a really sensitive, spiritual and emotional artist (you can tell if you listen to my music), to working 20 hour days and being on 5 airplanes a week. Being in front of crowds of people, offstage, you know, and at meet-and-greets. Then there was all the make-up. There were people making sure I didn’t wear the same thing twice. All of these things, it was just too much for a person like me. It wasn’t my nature. I always thought my nature was the music. I didn’t know how to handle it at all. I retired two times. It was like, I want to make music, but can’t do this.
It was harder on me than I ever could have imagined. I went from playing guitar under a tree in Savanna[sic], Georgia, going to my art classes, talking to people, in five years, to the Grammys. And being shut out [in 2002, India was nominated for seven Grammys, and was snubbed], and the whole politics of the thing. Clive Davis and the rest.”
She also shared some advice for those looking to break into the music industry, and kept it 100 percent real: Money might make you happy for a little bit, but that happiness won’t last.
“It’s a myth that one thing can happen and make your life better forever, or that you’ll be happy forever because of this one thing. A lot of us think it’s money, others think it’s fame, and if someone has money and fame they should be happy. People think that until they’ve been there. Every person who’s made a big chunk of money early, or got introduced to fame young, knows, it’s just one more thing to be responsible for. I’ve never heard of a person who was happy because they got rich. It takes certain worries off your plate, but it doesn’t change the fact that you have this plate you need to deal with. You don’t know who your friends are, your parents are asking for things–my mother never asked me for anything, which I’m blessed for — but I have friends who spent all their money buying their parents cars.
And your friends think you’ve changed. I could tell you a million things, but you know where I’m going with that.
The advice I’d give to a young, sensitive artist, is figure out how to define what it means to give your power away. For me, that means giving anything outside of yourself the power to define how you feel about yourself. You’re going to sit across from people who see the world differently from you, you are a product to them. That doesn’t mean you have to see yourself that way. Figure out what your spiritual practice is, and make that the center of your life.”
What do you think of what Arie had to say? Talk about it below and check out her full chat with HuffPo here.
Syleena Johnson Tries To Explain Her Blue Ivy Comments As India Arie Slams Her And Others For Criticizing A Child’s Hair
On the red carpet for Think Like A Man Too (the same red carpet where Kevin Hart discussed his issues with Torrei at), Bossip talked to Syleena Johnson about the controversy she caused when she decided to crack jokes about Blue Ivy’s hair, jokes that referenced ODB and Terence Trent D’Arby of all people. The BeyHive came after her pretty intense, and in turn, she basically laughed off the attacks. But when speaking to Bossip, she let them know she’s actually a big Beyoncé fan and thinks Blue Ivy is adorable…but she still took a few joke jabs here and there:
“Oh God…They brought up a picture of the girl’s hair. Her hair was off the chain. But she is the cutest, most adorable baby…So I’m like, okay, they didn’t comb her hair today. But I’m just jokes. In real life, I’m a Beyoncé stan. I love Beyoncé. And her daughter is too cute. The people on Twitter? I can’t do the computer thugs, but I was told about them because I didn’t really get to see them, because my sister sometimes runs my Twitter account because I was getting ready for this. But you know how they do, girl. You could be like, Beyoncé had a booger on her arm and they’d be like, ‘You don’t worry about her boogers! Don’t talk about her boogers! [laughs]’ They be going in. But no, we love–Me, Tamar and Keke, we love Beyoncé, we love her baby…but the girl’s hair wasn’t combed. And you know what, a lot of our babies’ hair don’t be combed. We just caught hers.”
But someone who isn’t laughing is India Arie. The “I Am Not My Hair” singer took to social media to say that people are going way too far:
Why does ANYone get the idea that its ok to make fun of a child?
In public no less?
This celebrity culture that hypnotizes people into thinking a person is LITERALLY NOT REAL because you see them on television is a spell the watcher HIM or HER SELF MUST BREAK.
Blue Ivy — is a CHILD.
and ANYONE thinking to themselves right now:
“But she was born with a silver spoon in her mouth so what does it matter what I say”
Denying ANY PERSON their humanity , is a GAME we should ALL stop playing.
Because it’s the kind of PERSON YOU WANT TO BE.
Why NOT be a person who is loving towards human kind as a whole AND people as individuals?
WHY NOT be a person protects the hearts of children?
I think! all these people making negative comments would feel the SAME WAY if Blue Ivy’s hair were TOO DONE. If she had a relaxer, of Hair pulled too tight at the edges.
being gentle with a child’s hair is simply appropriate – this goes the same for ALL children.
come ya’ll Lol
Were ARE better than this.
Check out Syleena’s comments in full below, and let us know what you think of what both women had to say.
Let the public tell it, Sunday night’s Grammys were a travesty with a side of a popularity contest. Watching Kendrick not pick up anything throughout the night, and also having to witness him lose out to Macklemore in almost all of the rap categories, had quite a few people talking, including Russell Simmons:
“He’s a great rapper, but there is no evidence anywhere that he’s a better artist than Lamar.”
@Kendricklamar WAS robbed, BUT he was not the only one who was robbed. Personally, I was pleased he was able to perform and they KILLED! IT! One of the FEW moving moments of the night for ME.
Don’t forget about Meek Mill!
Congrats 2 @macklemore for a incredible win and I believe Kendrick was robbed.
This game was never fair….and awards can’t change the judgement of the culture…. Most of these awards are always f**ked up!
Hell, even Macklemore, himself:
“He’s somebody that I love his music and, in my opinion, had the best Rap album of the year. And knowing how the Grammys usually go, I knew that there would be a great chance that we’d win that award and, in essence, rob Kendrick. That’s what happened tonight. It kind of sucks. I think we made a great album. I think that Kendrick made a better Rap album.”
But what about Kendrick Lamar? From the look on his face throughout the night as the awards for the categories he was nominated in were handed out to other people, he was over it all by hour two. But when speaking with XXL after a performance on Tuesday, Lamar said Macklemore worked hard, so he deserved to win everything he did, but he also acknowledged the lack of hip-hop being represented at the show:
“It’s well deserved; he did what he did, man. He went out there and hustled and grinded. Everything happens for a reason; the universe comes back around, that’s how it go.
I definitely feel like they should always have more of the culture up in there, for sure, because we definitely stand out just like any other genre. We part of the world. We part of the movement. So I think any awards, including the Grammys, should always push for more hip-hop because it’s music as a whole, it’s not just splitting different regions. Everything moves as far as sound and vibrations, and that’s how it goes. And we are a part of that.”
What do you think about his statements?
‘The Grammys Are Not About The Music, It’s A Popularity Contest:’ India Arie Speaks Out Against The Grammys
Every once in a while, a celebrity will go against the Hollywood grain and act as a mouth piece, saying aloud what many of us regular folk are already thinking. In response to the 2014 Grammy Awards, India Arie had quite a bit to say about her disappointments regarding the show. She shared those thoughts via an open letter, which she posted to Twitter and Tumblr.
“@Kendricklamar WAS robbed, BUT he was not the only one who was robbed,” the “Chocolate High” singer wrote. “Personally, I was pleased he was able to perform and they KILLED! IT! One of the FEW moving moments of the night for ME.”
She then went on to express that Grammys are not about what organizers claim that they are about.
“Though it’s called ‘Music industries biggest night’ the #Grammys are NOT about the music, it’s a popularity contest. The voting process allows people, to vote on name recognition alone – the music industry politics is a whole NUTHER conversation. Too much to go into here. The American Music Awards is a show that awards sales and popularity and popularity – the #Grammys are SAID to be about the music. If the hip hop community voted on hip hop – R&B COMMUNITY the same – same for each category – we’d see winners that reflect the MUSIC ITSELF. We all know that’s just not the way it goes.”
Her letter continues:
“NOW the BIGGER losers, are ALL of black music. Where was the black music community represented in last nights #Grammy show? Performers and Winners (or not). Where were the black artists? And this isn’t the first time the #Grammy’s has had a show all but excluding young black America and black artists in general, although we set the worlds musical trends. Why NOT televise the lifetime achievement awards of the Isley Brothers? SURELY they deserved to be on televised stage LAST NIGHT! While other artists were on stage TWICE.
The truth is in a perfect world diversity would matter, and respect would be rampant, but the TRUTH is, The #Grammys is a television show, and in THAT world ratings reign supreme. So, in general, bigger names take the stage, and sadly the biggest names often times ARE BIGGER drawn along racial lines from the release of an album i.e. marketing dollars, and just general support. It’s unfortunate
I don’t even get surprised any more, but, it still hits my sense of fairness, because I KNOW many of the artists who are overlooked. I LIVE in that world. We keep showing up and subjecting ourselves to the game, hoping MAYBE we’ll win. I was so HAPPY to see @Kendricklamar take that stage – because it is a FORM of winning, at LEAST, he was SEEN.
Speaking of diversity, congratulations to my PERSONAL favorite albums of the year – @I_GregoryPorter #LiquidSpirit @Realsnarkypuppy and @lalahhathaway on your win and THANK YOU! @pharrell for acting RIGHT in the presence of the greatness that is @Nilerodgers and #StevieWonder
Love to all #SoulBirdsWorldWide”
India followed up by addressing some uninformed folks who may have implied that she’s simply hating.
What do you think of India’s letter?
“My Highest Prayer Is People See Themselves In The Show”: India Arie Speaks On Healing Her Fans During Concerts
“Do you guys follow me on Twitter?” rang out India.Arie‘s voice from the stage at the Beacon Theater as she joyfully spun round in a circle in a free-flowing white dress made by her talented mother. The crowd roared back in the affirmative. “Because this is what I mean when I say ‘I’m twirling’ at home,” said India. Earlier that evening during her sound check she twirled again, this time because a friend gave her a birthday present: a necklace that India had pinned on Pinterest.
Seems like a lot of twirling, but it just goes to show that four-time Grammy winner India.Arie is a happy person, and she’s not afraid to show it. What’s more, she truly has a lot to be happy about. Just this past summer she released her first new album in four years, “Songversation”–an album that Vibe called “chicken soup for the soul.” She’s currently promoting the album with her tour, “A Songversation with India.Arie” that’s sponsored by Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Formula–a serendipitous partnership that came about thanks to India’s smooth single, “Cocoa Butter.”
We were thrilled to get the chance to sit down with Ms. Arie herself for a quick moment before her New York City show this past weekend. Gracious and warm, India had a thoughtful response for all of our questions. Check out our conversation below.
SB: I know that getting to this new album was a journey. You were away from the music scene for a little, so what does Songversation mean to you and what are you hoping the fans take away from the album?
India: Songversation means bringing an intellectual aesthetic and an intuitive aesthetic together. Speaking and singing, and lyrics and words. The screen [on-stage] incorporates words and images; they’re not just up there, they’re pivotal to the songversation itself. And it also means that I can be more me.
Read more at StyleBlazer.com
Winter is just about here and you know what that means…dry, ashy skin! Lucky for you, the cold seasons don’t have to be brutal on your skin because we’re giving away goodies from Palmer’s Cocoa Butter to two readers!
To celebrate India Arie and Palmer’s collaboration, which we told you about earlier this year, two of our lucky readers will get to take home a prize pack featuring a signed copy of India’s new CD “Songversation” and a signed Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Formula Lotion, along with other Palmer’s goodies, like their the brand new Skin Therapy Oil FACE!
To enter the contest, follow the entry rules below and check back Friday for the announcement of the winner. Good luck!
I can’t ever recall a time I’ve seen India Arie dance in a video. Maybe a slight two step at most, but in her new video, “Just Do You,” baby girl is dancing, at one point in her underwear. (But don’t worry, India’s not straying from her brand.) Instead she plays a character, in the beginning of the video, to further illustrate the message of her song.
The take-away of this uptempo, feel good song is to encourage people to stop living afraid, step into your purpose and live your freakin’ life. I can appreciate that. We can always count on India to speak some truth to our spirits.
Check out the video below and tells us, pass or play?
About a month or so ago, one of my coworkers, who we’ll call Marissa for the sake of this article, came in talking about Oprah’s recent interview with India.Arie for “Next Chapter.” Her general perception of India was that she was a bit obsessed with finding a man. I didn’t know why she was surprised, it was very clear to me that India’s “Ready For Love” was not a joke. Then there was “This Too Shall Pass,” with lyrics like:
I achieved so much in life
But I’m an amateur in love
My bank account is doing just fine
But my emotions are bankrupt
My body is nice and strong
But my heart is in a million pieces
When the sun is shining so am I
But when the night falls so does my tears
the desires of India’s heart are not some type of mystery. She wants love ya’ll and she’s not afraid to admit it. But Marissa somehow felt her want for a man was a bit consuming. During their interview, Oprah asked India if she could ask God one question, what would it be, she said “Where is my soul mate?” Knowing India’s music like I do, her response didn’t surprise me and I didn’t see the issue. I asked Marissa, “Well, what’s wrong with that?”
She said India’s question just seemed very selfish. Her thinking was that if you had an opportunity, to talk to God, the creator of the universe, you should ask him something that would provide the world with some type of insight, not something that would give your personal journey more context.
I could see what she was saying but then I also thought, if I’d had a personal conversation with God and he answered one of my questions, when I go to share that answer with the rest of the world, chances are they wouldn’t believe it. If you believe in or have studied any type of religious texts, you know the people God is in close communication with are the people who are, hands down, the most doubted and in many cases even persecuted. It’s happened and continues to happen today. So, naw I’m not mad at India for taking the hypothetical opportunity to “go for hers.”
Now that I knew what type of question I’d ask, I started to think about what it would be. What would I ask God. I’ve thought about my question since that conversation, which as I said was over a month ago, and I still haven’t been able to come up with anything. I have to admit initially I was getting frustrated with myself. Why couldn’t I come up with a question?! But it wasn’t long before it came to me. I talk to God everyday and even ask him questions. (People tell you, you’re not supposed to question God but you can ask him questions) and a lot of times, if you wait for a little bit, or are quiet and still enough you’ll get the answer.
So with that in mind, since we have the opportunity to talk to God and ask him questions, what would you ask? And furthermore, have you ever asked God something and got a very distinct, clear answer in response?
India.Arie has a reputation for being obvious with her Mother Earth persona. Now she’s making her love for cocoa butter clear. It’s not just that the lead single off her new album “SongVersation” is called “Cocoa Butter.” She’s also partnered up with Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Formula for the new music video (available at the bottom of the page). As if a chorus of “Your love is like cocoa butter on my heart” doesn’t provide enough inspiration for 140-character jokes, her latest music video positions her as cocoa butter’s answer to the Avon lady.
Brands Behind the Music
Lady Gaga is credited with ushering in blatant product placement in music videos. Before her, product placement meant the camera lingered on the product longer than it took for you to count to “one-Mississippi.” In 2010, Gaga’s “Telephone” video included in-your-face placements for everything from Miracle Whip to Virgin Mobile.
Brought on by videos’ move from television to the Internet and record labels’ attempt to make videos a revenue source and not just a marketing tool, this trend shows no signs of slowing. Music integrations were up 22.7 percent last year alone according to the PQ Media Global Product Placement Spending Forecast 2012-2016. Remember when MTV dominated music video distribution and logos were blurred out? The channel had it’s own advertisers to cater to. The Web allows advertisers more access to space in videos.
“YouTube and Vevo provide the best places for music videos to be posted with ads,” says Deborah Posner, an advertising instructor at The Art Institute of Fort Lauderdale. “Vevo, in particular, was launched in 2009 for the specific purpose of enabling product placement in music videos by high-end advertisers with free access by viewers.”
When It Works & When It Doesn’t
Lord knows the music industry can’t afford to churn out videos like it did in MTV’s heyday. Product placement helps the medium to survive. Artists get financial support often without sacrificing their creativity or bombarding their fans with overt advertising. Everyone wins. Until now.
Advertisers can take things a little too far. Watching Arie’s leading man smooth Palmer’s on her brown skin as she sings “You rub it in” is a tragic comedy that shows exactly where the limit on these arrangements lie: when the whole affair feels like a sales pitch.
“To avoid making the video look simply like a commercial, the products should complement the story, and not be the main attraction,” Posner adds.
Don’t Ruin This
Music videos are an advertiser’s dream. Videos promote lifestyles, and brands are always looking for ways to align their products with a larger community or feeling. Videos also have a permanence that traditional commercials don’t offer. “Cocoa butter” will exist on YouTube as long as the Internet gods see fit.
But artists have to remember to make these deals work for their best interests. That’s why artists like Jay-Z and Beyonce are signing up for creative collaborations with major brands (Budweiser and Pepsi, respectively) rather than simply being a spokesperson. They don’t want the products to overshadow their artistry. They don’t want to turn themselves into a pusher or a punchline.
At the end of India.Arie’s video, as the cream ribbons floating around her faded away, I felt like I had been tricked into watching a four-minute commercial for cocoa butter. I guess the joke’s on me.
C. Cleveland covers professional development topics and entrepreneurial rebels who blaze their own career paths. She explores these stories and more on The Red Read, Twitter (@CleveOutLoud) and Facebook (/MyReadIsRed).
India Arie’s new album “SongVersation,” has fans excited after four years of waiting for new music. One of the singles off the album, “Cocoa Butter” is a slow tempo tune about love. For the sen-sual song, the singer partnered with Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Formula that’s featured in the video.
“Your love is like cocoa butter on my heart… rub it in,” sings India in the music video. In regards to the perfect partnership, she said, “I am really excited to be partnering with Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Formula. Aside from being a longtime fan of their products, they’re a family business with a strong ethical foundation and that makes us a great match.”
Watch the video and see if you can spot the Palmer’s in it at Styleblazer.com