One of my favorite parts of an awards show is when the audience is invited on a trip to the past! This normally includes bringing back an old cast of a classic tv show for a mini-reunion or giving legendary groups and singers a chance to show us that they still got it. That is exactly what happened at the 2017 Soul Train Awards. If we are being honest, the old school didn’t look old at all. Let’s be clear, the new cats like Ro James, Jessie J, and ESPECIALLY Luke James did their thing. Unfortunately, they are in a very small category of singers today that actually have any type of vocals, stamina, and stage presence, in that order.
Hearing Luke James go up about 786 octaves shook my little soul to the core, but I am sure most would agree that the night truly belonged to SWV, Miss Toni Braxton, and 112. They all hit the stage like they never left. The choreography was clean and smooth, the vocals were information, 99% of the notes were hit accordingly while they were executing their dance moves, and most importantly, their microphones stayed on! Before I continue, I can honestly say I was not watching the awards show through my nostalgia glasses. As excited as I may have been, I was ready to watch, enjoy, and critique. I hold these artists to an extremely high standard and expect nothing less when they step back on stage. I was not disappointed in the least. Yet, I will say during Toni Braxton’s performance, it did feel as if her mic was a little low near the end of the set. It may have been a technical issue or the band could have been drowning her out. Either way, I was all the way here for it.
I hope that performances of this caliber serve as the swift kick in the rear that a lot of artists need. Look at how much effort was put into an entertainer’s craft from the 60s to the 90s. Compare it to the effort that is being shown today. There is an enormous difference. You cannot put in 25% effort and expect 100% excellence. Time, practice, dedication, and performance are prime examples of correlation and causation. Why do a lot of older artists and groups still sound and look amazing on stage? It is because that “old school grind” was instilled in them when they were new artists, and it has stayed with them. All this to say, I just want these newer artists to take notes and pay attention. Strive to be nothing less than great. Strive to be an artist that does not have a shelf life. Simply be timeless.
Have Peace in Your Presence
Rolling Ray Undergoes Surgery After Wig Catches On Fire
Social media star Rolling Ray underwent surgery Tuesday morning to treat serious burns on his body after his terrible wig accident last week.
In a series of IG stories, he let his audience follow along as he prepped for surgery.
Last week Rolling Ray announced he was hospitalized after his wig caught on fire! During a January 13 Instagram Live session hosted straight from his hospital bedside, he showed his severely burnt and damaged face telling viewers his “whole skin, legs, arms, feet, and everything” were burned.
In a more recent Live, Ray explained the incident that led to his whole wig catching on fire: an unfortunate smoking accident. “It just, like, lit on fire when I tried to light the cigarette,” he recounted. “So I get to trying to snatch the wig off. B***h, the fire goes to my f*****g shirt, to my feet, to my legs, to my back. It’s a fire everywhere, it’s a fire in the whole room.”
Of course the internet trolled him in a disgusting display of ableism and heartlessness. Comments like “Rolling Ray should have stopped, dropped, and rolled” and “karma’s a b***h” had social media conflicted in its feelings about his accident. His sensation comes from his harsh and, often, below-the-belt reads (just last month he told Yung Miami to “dig (sic) up” her dead baby father. However, the criticism didn’t stop him from responding on Twitter.
Rolling Ray might be problematic as all get-out, but we do not tolerate ableism here. We wish him well as he heals.
Fantasia Reveals Gender of Baby On the Way!
On Tuesday singer-songwriter and “American Idol” winner Fantasia Barrino took to social media to reveal that she is having a baby girl, her first child with husband Kendall Taylor.
In a series of Instagram stories, Fantasia showed pink fireworks being shot off during a gender reveal party, to her and her hubby’s excitement! She continued by sharing what her daughter-to-be’s name will be: Keziah London Taylor.
The news comes after the couple revealed they had struggled to conceive since their 2015 marriage. During a November episode of her IG Live show “Taylor Talks,” she described continuously praying for a child with her husband. Fantasia, a deeply devout Christian, was obviously elated when she shared the news.
“God I Want To Thank You!” she said in an Instagram caption. “You Gave Us A Seed even when the Doctor said that one of my Tubes [was] Closed you said Different. @salute1st I Love You King and I can’t wait to see who He or She acts Like.”
We can see Fantasia and family are all super excited to be welcoming a baby girl into their lives. All congratulations to her.
Kim Kardashian and Kanye West Are Getting Divorced, Report Says
In a story published Tuesday evening, Page Six is reporting that Kim Kardashian and Kanye West are getting divorced, with the two already in settlement talks. The news comes after the couple spent the holiday season separately – Kanye at his ranch outside Cody, Wyoming, Kim and the kids with her famous family in southern California.
A source close to Kardashian was quoted saying, “Kim got Kanye to go up there so they could live separate lives and quietly get things sorted out to separate and divorce. She’s done.” Kardashian, 40, and West, 43, are said to be splitting because of marital problems directly related to Kanye’s very public mental health struggles.
For several years the rapper’s various antics have caused fans to worry. After coming out as a Trump supporter, West then announced his own 2020 presidential bid under a new political party: the Birthday Party. At a campaign rally in South Carolina, he was seen rambling, debating individual audience members, and at times, crying. In various interviews, he has rambled on almost incoherently, and his tweetstorms are now infamous.
For her part, Kim has always supported her husband and has openly discussed the difficulties of their marriage. Back in June, she shared on social media, “Anyone who has [bipolar disorder] or has a loved one in their life who does, knows how incredibly complicated and painful it is to understand… People who are unaware or far removed from this experience can be judgmental and not understand that the individual (has) to engage in the process of getting help no matter how hard family and friends try.”
It appears she has finally reached her limit in the union with the unnamed source saying, “She is serious about taking the bar exam and becoming a lawyer, she is serious about her prison reform campaign. Meanwhile Kanye is talking about running for president and saying other crazy s**t, and she’s just had enough of it.”
Separately, a source close to Kanye alleges the rapper is sick of his wife and her family, which might have some truth to it since he has tweeted some pretty nasty things about them in the past. “I been trying to get divorced since Kim met with Meek at the Warldolf [sic] for ‘prison reform,’” he said in a now-deleted July tweet. Recently, he hasn’t been featured on his wife’s Instagram and has largely remained out of the public eye.
With the news yet to be confirmed, the “divorce is imminent” reports are just rumors for now. We’ll be following the news as more information comes out.