All Articles Tagged "music video"
If you’re a Kendrick Lamar fan, it would have been hard for you to avoid his single “B!+ch Don’t Kill My Vibe” from his good kid, m.A.A.d city album. Despite the expletive in the title and throughout the song, it’s gotten much radio play.
Now there’s a video to go along with it. Kendrick dons all white in a church, a field, in a limo. There’s a moment of comic releif when Mike Epps appears to baptize Kendrick in a pool of liquor.
It’s interesting and at times feel sacrilegious.
But I’ll let you be the judge.
Check it out.
As you might have suspected, due to all the recent interviews, Chris Brown is back on the scene with some new music. And fortunately, he’s leaving the techno stuff alone for a little while. Instead, he’s taking it back to his R&B days. Remember “Yo”? I still swear by that song. But I digress. In this new song, “Fine China,” Chris Brown is exercising his vocal chords sliding in and out of falsetto range with ease. Listening to the audio alone, there were definitely moments where I wondered if there was a woman on the track accompanying him. It’s impressive. Then instrumentally, there’s a funky bass line and violins throughout.
As for the visuals, Chris Brown is in Michael Jackson mode so tough it nearly slaps you in the face. Fortunately, it stops short of being a cheesy imitation and comes across as more of a nod of appreciation. The comparisons are far too numerous to list here but he does Michael’s high pitched wail, the video could easily be considered one of Michael’s signature “short films,” and the emphasis on choreography, though uniquely Chris, is still a nod to the King of Pop.
The story follows Chris as he and his Asian (remember Fine China) love interest hit the streets together, despite her father’s objections. Daddy is not going to give up easily though and things go from light-hearted and fun to threatening and dangerous. Check it out and let us if you’re feeling the song and video.
You may have heard that when it comes to new rappers on the scene, Kendrick Lamar’s name is almost always mentioned. With a distinct voice, smooth flow and deep lyrics, Kendrick is definitely one to watch. His album, good kid, m.A.A.d city, is full of gems but Poetic Justice, the single he released, seems to be everyone’s favorite. With a sampling of Janet Jackson’s “Anytime,” there were rumors that Janet was going to make an appearance in the video. She was even see recently rocking her iconic box braids. She didn’t make an appearance in the video, but the treatment is nicely done and sends a message. Plus there’s a nod to Poetic Justice the movie in there. You’ll appreciate it.
Ya’ll know Kevin Hart has a thing for Paula Patton and he’s finally decided to put it in a song — to the tune of her husband, Robin Thicke’s own track, “Lost Without You,” of course — except Kevin Hart’s version has a bit of a twist. He’s “Frost Without You.”
Last night on the “Real Househusbands of Hollywood,” the comedian debuted what he considers to be his new “hit” single. We can’t vouch for those vocals, but the lyrics….hilarious! And the video is even funnier! Check it out here and tell us what you think.
As women, we’re used to wearing many hats and Alicia Keys is saluting all of them in the new video for her female empowerment anthem, “Girl on Fire.”
From taking care of the kids as mothers, to being caretakers of the elderly, to looking after the home, cooking and cleaning, to paying the bills and looking after our man at the end of the day, Alicia salutes our tenacity and ability to do it all — and looks pretty phenomenal while doing it. It’s also nice to see a video with an actual story line and cool visual treatments that you don’t see everyday.
Check out the new video and tell us what you think; pass or play?
Girl-on-girl action has become the hot thing to do for attention these days, Nicki Minaj being the most recent (and grandest) offender. But some are wondering whether Marsha Ambrosius might be in the lesbian for play play camp now after looking at the video for her new song, “F**k N Get it Over With.” Of course there’s always the other possibility too, that she’s actually into women and this is her creative coming out.
The track, which I’m sure will quickly become the club closer at the end of the night, is definitely a bedroom boom jam and the video backs up the late-night, let’s get it right tempo. Marsha is the only one we see for the majority of the clip, preparing for an intimate encounter with someone she clearly plans on finally going to bed with after much anticipation. As we watch her set out her bra and mini-skit and hop in a car scantily clad, we assume she’s headed over to give a man some good loving. But then the biggest shock of all, besides Marsha having a song with such a raw title, is that a woman in lingerie answers the door and leads Marsha into the house, so they can finally eff and get it over with.
So what’s the big deal?
One, we’re not used to seeing two women in a sexual way in a video without it being overly salacious. Some might say this scene also falls into that category, but there was something very matter-of-fact about the way the other woman was presented that I can appreciate. No one was grinding on the other for the sake of male attention as is so often the case with displays of lesbian love. These were two grown women about to do what they do because that’s what they like to do. Two, if, in fact, this is Marsha’s own coming out or even just a nod to lesbian women, I can value the presentation without all the hype over a “gay scene” so to speak or all of the theatrics over her announcing her sexual preference.
Since Marsha’s Floetry days there have been questions over her sexual orientation, and even speculation that she was in a relationship with bandmate Natalie Stewart and when they broke up as a couple, they also broke up as a group. Neither woman has ever spoken on those rumors, and though Marsha has openly talked about her connection with gay audiences, she’s never been open about who she’s laying with at the end of the night because, truthfully, it’s irrelevant to her craft. But now she seems to be letting us inside her world just a bit with the cliffhanger ending of her new music video, which incidentally debuted on National Coming Out Day yesterday. Coincidence? I think not.
The singer has yet to confirm whether what’s seen in the video is a reflection of what she does in real life, although after looking at the video what more is there to say? Kudos to her for artistically showcasing her truth without all the pomp and circumstance. Unless of course this was just a publicity move to get people to listen to the song in which case I’ll just say congratulations!
Check out the video below. What do you think about it?
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I was pleasantly surprised last week when a link to Solange Knowles’s new song and video, “Losing You” shimmied down my Twitter timeline. I’ve been a fan of hers since Sol-Angel and the Hadley Street Dreams so I eagerly clicked the link and waited for some musical magic.
With vibrant mixed ’70s patterns and colors against a South African backdrop, the video gave me everything I wanted and then some. Solange sings in a retro tone to a retro beat about losing the love of her life, all the while partying out with friends, having the time of her life in Cape Town.
Though I was already a Solange supporter, I started to lean into her work even more after watching this video because I was intrigued by the concept. I learned something pretty awesome. According to an interview with The Fader, Solange explained her fascination with and use of the unique subculture of the Sapeurs in her video:
“They’ve been able to just sort of create this movement and have the foundation of it be about, you know, having style and grace and edict and portraying that in every way. It’s not just about the fashion, a Sapeur must know how to speak French, a Sapeur must know how to tie his tie the right way, he must have perfect posture, just that classic edict.”
In the same interview Solange went into more detail explaining how she was able to make the video possible through hard work and the generosity of friends and family, giving she and her friends their frequent flyer miles to make the trip to South Africa possible. She is signed with indie label Terrible Records and seems to have a very clear idea of who she is and what she wants: A creative young woman who simply wants to make honest music.
Solange also recently took off her spokeswoman hat for natural bath and beauty products line, Carol’s Daughter citing differences of opinion when it came to what message was being sent out to the masses.
“I was constantly fighting for the right message to be heard. The message that the way we wear our hair is a personal choice, there’s no right or wrong way; one way doesn’t make us more intelligent, or more superficial, and everyone makes that choice for very different reasons,” Solange told Lurve magazine in their latest issue.
At 26-years-old, she seems to be more self-reflective and sure of what she wants more than most 26-year-olds I know, including myself. Whether it’s her hair or her music, Solange obviously blazes her own trail, never allowing the media, big business or misplaced hateration to deter her from her goal: To simply be and create REAL. Her journey to finding herself from dropping her freshman album in her teen, which was clearly heavily (if not totally) influenced by the label to now putting together a third album with an independent label where creative freedom is all hers is refreshing to say the least. Not many artists have the guts to go against the grain and stay inspired. Most look for the easiest way to cop a Billboard hit whether it is a musical masterpiece or not. Solange seems to have a deep passion for being original, inspired and diverse. And why should she be anything else? With a sister who has solidified herself as one of the world’s biggest musical icons, Solange could easily have crumbled under the pressure of living up to that image. Instead she paved her own way as a prime example of how one doesn’t have to do what the majority does in order to be a hit, or to be beautiful, beloved or respected. She went natural, dresses in mixed prints and far out ’70s style, signed with an indie label and shot an amazing video in South Africa with a whole subculture of fly South Africans! She could have stuck with a weave and overly-sexualized lyrics to make her mark, but she took the path less traveled, carving out her own space. I think that deserves a more finely tuned listen and a closer look.
La Truly is a late-blooming Aries whose writing is powered by a lifetime of anecdotal proof that awkward can transform to awesome and fear can cast its crown before courage. La seeks to encourage thought, discussion and change. Her blog: www.hersoulinc.com and Twitter: @AshleyLaTruly.
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Watching Brandy unveil her video for “Put It Down” on 106 & Park this week, it’s easy to see why the world fell in love with her in the first place. In her early thirties, she still has the sweet likeability of an innocent 15 year old that makes you want to smile with her.
That makes this that much harder.
She looks gorgeous in the video. Her close-ups are undeniable proof the woman hasn’t aged since Never Say Never in 1998. But, it wasn’t “Thriller.” And to warrant three months of hype – the song hit the blogosphere in April – it needed to be “Thriller.”
“Put It Down” is the lead single for Two Eleven, the singer’s comeback album slated for release in October. I want Brandy to win. When I heard the single, in April, I was fully on board. But, she’s not going anywhere if she doesn’t pick up the pace. By the looks of things, she and her team are living in 2001.
“Put It Down” dropped on April 26 , but was not available on iTunes until May 8. For twelve days people downloaded her song illegally. Hardcore fans may have gone back to buy the single, but the rest of us kept it moving as illustrated by the song entering Billboard Hot R&B/Hip Hop Songs chart at number 98.
Filming for the video started on July 10th. What was Brandy doing for three months? She received a lot of attention for her July performance at the BET Awards. Brandy’s tribute to Whitney Houston was arguably one of the best performances we’ve ever seen her do. This would have been a good time to release a video. The purpose of content is to extend the conversation around your brand. It’s a great tool for prolonging buzz. But, it would be another month before we saw a glimpse of the clip.
For two weeks the four-minute clip was parceled out. Video stills on August 1, a trailer five days later, and a preview the week after online and on 106 & Park. It was a valiant effort to sustain interest in the song. But keep in mind a whole summer has taken place, countless dramas have unfolded, and Brandy is still talking about “Put It Down” repeatedly. It was the equivalent of someone who keeps interrupting your conversation talking about the same thing. If you’re not bringing anything new to the table, your content is worthless. Audiences can see through repackaging.
When a brand struggles in an area, it is a smart business move to look at what other brands dominating that area of the industry are doing and learn from their success. I want Brandy to learn from Rihanna. Rihanna has mastered the changing nature of the music industry and content in general. She doesn’t have a number one album, the classic measurement of an artist’s success, but she is the best-selling digital artist of all time. Rihanna’s last single, “We Found Love,” premiered on September 22, 2011 and was available for digital download on the same day. The music video was shot in late September, and premiered shortly after on October 19.
I don’t know what the personal issue is for Brandy, but the handling of this single reflects a strategic problem many brands, especially older ones, struggle with. Old models don’t work. The news cycle is too quick and our attention spans are too short.
The level of success Brandy once had now requires that she provide more new content, more often. When done correctly it will extend the work she puts into her music and performances. For her second single, let’s hope she gets it right.
By Justin Ray
Following Frank Ocean’s announcement of a tryst with another man, rapper Murs has released a new video to accompany his single “Animal Style” that has the internet buzzing.
Although many celebrities commended Ocean for his strength, Murs has taken his support for same-sex equality to a level not many would have the courage. The music video tells a story about two gay youths in high school struggling to maintain a relationship while living in a less than supportive environment. Murs plays Roderick who is in the closet while dating another student, Jonathan. The video depicts the heterosexual rapper upping the same-sex support ante by kissing his male actor counterpart.
Murs’ character Jonathan finds being in a gay relationship too risky and pummels his boyfriend into the ground to avoid being outed in front of his friends. At the end of the story, the two teenage lovers meet again but Roderick pulls out a gun and shoots his boyfriend as well as himself.
The rapper has made a profound statement with the video, calling out all those who oppose gays.
It is a courageous gesture considering that the rap game isn’t exactly the most supportive towards gay people. The music video also features interspersed shots of the rapper rocking a “Legalize Gay” shirt, making his stance abundantly clear.
Sadly, Murs’ is getting more attention for the kiss; but truth be told, the most daring feature of the song is the lyrics. Murs describes his character’s inner conflict with religion: “So he lived in fear of God’s wrath/ The preacher said that God loves us all except fags.” His inner conflict with religion leads him into a downslide of self loathing and eventually the murder/suicide. Of course there can be a lengthy dialogue about whether the message is about organized religion or religion with a capital R; regardless, the fact that he outlined how religion can make gays unjustly hate themselves is more courageous than any kiss could be.
Murs explained his intentions with the song on Youtube: “The first was to be an advocate for people close to me who are out, and those who have yet to come out. It’s also a love song, which is nothing new for me. But with this one I wanted to challenge the listener to ask themselves: Is the love shared by two people of the same gender, really that different than the love I have for my partner of the opposite sex?”
The future of rap may take a new course with more musicians showing support and going against the grain of the history of rap. Last year Lil B released an album entitled “I’m Gay (I’m Happy)” and later revealed he received death threats. Although his support for same-sex rights is more obtuse, he did make a statement about the climate of homophobia in hip hop and his apathy towards it.
Hip hop is meeting a tipping point. Universally respected hip hop artists–Jay Z, Kanye, Eminem, Russell Simmons–are releasing statements in support of gay people. Even the future pioneers of rap have shown support. A$AP Rocky once said about homosexuality that you lose too many friends being homophobic and that hating gays is like being sexually racist.
Murs, along with other rappers who champion the cause, use their influence to show future generations that being gay isn’t a crime. The US government suggests that gay people are not equal citizens by not federalizing gay marriage nor any form of legislation that would at least give gay people some legal recognition to be honored by each state. However, public figures who have influence can show others that supporting gay people shows more strength than rejecting them. Hell, it can even be lucrative.
Either way, the tides suggest that homophobia in the rap community will one day be a state of mind to be laughed at in the future, and Murs has helped that become a possibility.
Check out his groundbreaking song and the video below.
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Not too long ago we released the audio for Whitney Houston’s last recorded song, “Celebrate.” It was a collaboration with American Idol winner and co-star Jordin Sparks for their upcoming movie, “Sparkle.” Recently, the visuals for the song came out and they’re too cute. Upbeat and fun but still a celebration of our fallen musical icon. Check out the video below and let us know if you’re feeling both it and the song.
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