Fresh off of wrapping her “Liberation” tour with D’Angelo this month, The Queen of Hip-Hop Soul Mary J. Blige drops a new cover entitled, “Everyday People.” Blige gives her rendition to the 1968 classic record by Sly and the Family Stone “Everyday People,” which was also covered by Arrested Development (whom I LOVE). Produced by Jermaine Dupri and Bryan-Michael Cox. Blige also dives back into acting with her upcoming role as Malcolm X’s wife Betty Shabazz, for the Lifetime biopic Betty & Coretta. Coretta Scott King will be reportedly depicted by veteran actress Angela Bassett. Listen to “Everyday People” below… Continue reading
Queen of Hip-Hop/Soul, Mary J. Blige did really good mentoring this week’s Top 13 on American Idol and also, gave a powerful performance of her new single, “Why” from her latest studio release My Life II…The Journey Continues . Check her out!
Mary J. Blige gave a powerful performance on Live! with Kelly, for the song “Living Proof”, which was featured on her album My Life II and The Help Soundtrack. Mary has been vocal in the last few days about her disappointment regarding an Oscar snub and she felt it was “mean” that The Academy only nominated two songs in the category when there are five slots available. Blige had rave reviews for the song, yet did not receive a nomination nor did Madonna and Elton John for their song contributions in the movie The Help. Watch here…
Directed by Diane Martel, The Queen of Hip-Hop/Soul, Mary J. Blige offers her latest video, “Mr. Wrong” from her new album “My Life II: The Journey Continues (Act I)”. MJB is accompanied by backup dancers for a little choreography and of course, she is rocking her knee boots & shades. Lots of people were expecting a cameo from Drake in the video, but he was absent from it. Still a solid song & video. Check it out…
Seems as though Justin Beiber is really in the holiday spirit releasing a new Xmas album entitled “Under The Mistletoe” and debuting his brand new video directed by Collin Tilley with R&B icons Boys II Men for his song “Fa La La”. Check it out…
As well as, a live performance on ABC’s The View recorded 11/23 alongside soul singer Mary J. Blige…watch here!
For 2011, VH1 Divas are getting back to the root of music, focusing on the mantra for this year’s show, “Celebrating Soul”. I am very happy to receive this news because I was highly disappointed with last year’s show and the performances of Nicki Minaj, Keri Hilson and Katy Perry. It was not what the show has represented in previous years at all. I’m hoping VH1 Divas will have great performances like the ones we’ve seen with the incomparable duets of Whitney Houston and Mary J. Blige and Mariah singing alongside Aretha Franklin and Beyonce performing with Stevie Wonder.
Those were the performances I really appreciated! Luckily, the lineup this year consists of some real soul sistas: Jennifer Hudson, Jill Scott, Mary J. Blige, Kelly Clarkson, Jessie J and Florence + the Machine, just to name a few. As well as, Philly’s own “The Roots” scheduled to play as the house band!!! So tune in to VH1 on December 19, 2011 @ 9/8C.
Recently Mary J. Blige gave a live stream concert presented by American Express, entitled UNSTAGED from L.A.’s Club Nokia, you can now watch three videos from the show here. Blige dedicated the show to the late Heavy D, performing her hits from the 1994 release of “My Life” and some from her newly released album “My Life II…The Journey Continues”. The show was full of energy and she brought another New York native to assist with one of her new songs “Feel Inside”, none other than NAS!!! The audience had plenty of celebs who came to show love: Magic Johnson, Jennifer Lopez, Forest Whitaker, Anthony Anderson, Busta Rhymes and more. Check out MJB giving her all for over an hour and a half! Also, pick up Mary’s “My Life II“ in stores now!!!
Artist: DJ Khaled
Album: We The Best Forever
Released on: July 19, 2011
DJ Khaled, who is best known for street theme records, surfaces with his 5th album, entitled after his recognizable mantra “We the Best Forever”. The album includes productions by The Renegade, The Runners, Danja, Lex Luger and more. The compilation opens with “I’m On One”, which reached #10 on the Billboard Hip-Hop chart. Followed by “Welcome to my Hood”, which is really reminiscent of his previous hit “I’m So Hood”, again with an array of rappers who brought clever punchlines and swag. With “It Ain’t Over Til It’s Over”, I did not love the production, it was just okay. Of course, we all know Mary J. Blige houses power vocals, but on this track I felt they were contained, I wanted it to go harder and Fab and Jada’s verses could have been more lengthy, although I did love the sample instrumental.
On “Legendary” I loved Keyshia Cole’s vocals on the hook, as well as Chris Brown’s verses, but when the bridge section came in, I felt Ne-Yo (as much as I love him) was not a good fit. The track would have been perfectly fine with just two vocalists. However, I do feel that this rumored next single has potential to succeed commercially. “Can’t Stop” is my kind of track. The instrumental was knocking, Birdman’s signature flow was stamped on the verses and T-Pain was riding the hook effortlessly, I really wish it could have been longer, there definitely needed to be another verse.
“Future” has to be my favorite track of the album, with so many gifted lyricists on one song, it’s hard to go wrong. The track features Ace Hood, Meek Mill, Big Sean, Wale and Vado and I feel all of them did the track justice. Each of the rappers brought their game and if I had to choose my favorite verse, I would go with either Ace or Wale. “My Life” had infectious hook along with great energy and I felt Akon & B.O.B. presented a good collaboration and this came as a surprise because I’m not really a fan of Akon.
For me “Sleep When I’m Gone” was uninspiring. There were a couple of lyrics that grabbed my attention, but overall, I did not feel the song was as good as it could have been with Game, Busta and Cee-Lo, it really seemed to be just a filler and I expected more. “A Million Lights” was another filler for the album, the instrumental had an 80s feel with the sounds of a synthesizer minus the 80s quality. Unfortunately, it did not hold enough energy to gain my appreciation and I wanted it to, with such artists of Young Money. I know they can do better, but maybe that’s all they had with the given chemistry of the instrumental.
I understand what Khaled was attempting to do, being as though this is his first album on a major label, but for me the intention was not successfully carried out. The album was complete with commercial songs (which are cool), but did not seem to balance well with the few hood anthems, which is what he is known for. The thing about evolving as an artist is that you have to calculate a way to keep the factors of what made people love you and try to grow at the same time without recreating what you already did. I feel with so many talented artists, “We The Best Forever” should have been much better.
Rating: 3 earphones out of 5