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The Souuuul Train (Kicking it Old School)

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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

 

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Su-I-(De)-Cide

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Su-I-(De)-Cide. Really?! Are you deciding to commit suicide when you let yourself become just “one of them?”

Budding author Olivia Thompson thinks so as she takes us on a journey to discover what “living” means when who we are is pre-determined by everyone and everything that came before us. In her four short stories, we meet Zaba, a college-bound student fighting against social stigmas after learning her best friend is HIV positive; Raven, who does anything to force a drug dealer to feel the consequences of his choices; Kiyomi, who struggles to survive each new day, and; a nameless character who can be anyone of us in the midst of conflict. Through these stories, we learn that life is a beautiful experience, but it also has a habit of breaking people.

Although Miss Thompson began writing at three, this is her first publication. Born with a stutter that made her afraid to speak and the victim of bullying, she dove into creating imaginary worlds where characters used a voice she was too afraid to use herself. Behind the desktop, she was in control. Yet, as she got older she learned that no one is ever in control, and her imaginary worlds took a different turn.

Her debut title, Su-I-(De)-Cide, is available now on Amazon!

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On This Day, A Legend Is Born: Chrissy Teigen & John Legend Welcome Baby Boy

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Earlier this morning Chrissy Teigen broke the news that her second child with singer, John Legend, was born.

The couple already has a two-year-old daughter named, Luna, and now she has a little brother. While we don’t know the baby’s name yet or even seen a picture (taking notes from Beyoncé I see), we congratulate Chrissy and John for expanding their beautiful family.

(From left to right) Chrissy Teigen, Luna, & John Legend

Look at this adorable video John posted on Instagram calling the baby!

With #GoogleDuo, I can video call with my son before he's even born! #ad

A post shared by John Legend (@johnlegend) on

Here’s what Twitter had to say about the announcement:

 

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#MuteRKelly vs #TurnRKellyUp

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In retaliation of the Mute R Kelly campaign, which was launched because of the inhumane treatment of women, many of which who were under the legal age of consent, in an alleged sex cult and harem, Kelly has been accused of running for many years.

Kelly has launched the Turn R Kelly Up movement. Over the weekend during his show in North Carolina, Kelly gave out t-shirts and briefly addressed the crowd, with what appeared to be a “woe is me” cry for support.

 

Watch the plea here:

Kelly has been accused of sleeping with teenagers for years. He was first accused of marrying singer Aaliyah when she was only 15 years old, that marriage was annulled. He was then accused of sleeping with singer Sparkle’s niece, while she was only 14 years old and making the infamous sex tape, in which his reputation for giving out golden showers precedes him to this day.

Quite frankly, Kelly’s reputation overall is absolutely horrific. There are countless stories regarding how Kelly has a God complex because he has been able to get away with a lot of sick and twisted acts, with little to no repercussions.

Kelly Was Arrested on Child Pornography Charges

The singer was arrested in June of 2002 on child pornography charges, he posted $750,000 bail but then was arrested again in January 2003 on 16 additional child pornography charges, when photos of a naked, underage girl were found on his computer.

In addition to the accurately depicted Pied Piper persona, Kelly has also severed ties with his brother, Carey Kelly, who he expected to take the fall for his devious behavior, in addition to singers Neyo, Jay Z, and countless others, because of his superiority complex.

Recently, celebrities such as John Legend, Shonda Rimes, Viola Davis have banded in the #TimesUp movement to mute R Kelly, which has resulted in music platforms such as Spotify and Apple Music pulling back on the promotion of Kelly’s music. His music will still be available, it just won’t be highlighted.

Kelly’s Team Jumps Ship

In addition, Kelly’s female attorney, publicist, and assistant have also jumped ship. This can’t be a good sign. I’m sure they know much more about the inner workings of what goes on with Kelly’s alleged occult, behind closed doors. They don’t want to go down with him, permanently ruining their name and reputation, by supporting a predator.

It truly appears that all of Kelly’s dirt and wrongdoings are about to catch up to him. Although there will always be those that turn a blind eye to the singer’s misdeeds because he is such a gifted artist (which is reflected in his sold-out performance over the weekend in Fayetteville, NC).

#ItsAboutDamnTime Movement

Soon and very soon we will be transitioning from #TimesUp to #ItsAboutDamnTime, and others that follow behind R Kelly will think twice before violating young, impressionable women ever again. Until then, we are waiting and watching, with popcorn in hand.

https://latoyatjackson.wixsite.com/latoyatjackson

or latoyatjackson.wordpress.com

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