Finally, a Bessie Smith HBO Movie Biopic! – Watch the Electric Chair Video (Inspired by Bessie Smith) by Joy Dennis #Bessie

About the Electric Chair Video (Inspired by Bessie Smith) Electric Chair was Inspired by Bessie Smith ‘s 1920’s song entitled, “Send me to the ‘Lectric Chair” #Bessie. View this video clip from Joy Dennis’ 2011 interview discussing her inspiration behind the remaking of “Electric Chair”. Electric Chair was Written and performed by Joy Dennis. Directed and shot […]

OneJax presents OneVoice 1/8/15 at Bold Bean Roasters

[fap] OneVoice Upcoming Topic:  “Race Relations & Law Enforcement.” This Thursday, January 8, Bold Bean Coffee Roasters in Riverside opens its doors to a wonderful event called OneVoice from 6-8 p.m. OneVoice, an initiative started by OneJax, is led by Jacksonville’s next wave of thought leaders, professionals, cultural movers, and political shakers. OneVoice will steward a […]

PRI Productions Christmas Party 2014 (View Footage)

[fap]View footage from the 2014 PRI Productions Christmas Party at the home of PRI Productions president, Randy Goodwin. Special invited guests included Joy Dennis, Eric Witherspoon, Jacksonville Mayor Alvin Brown, Channel 4’s Nikki Kimbleton, former theatre coordinator of the Ritz Theatre Carol Alexander, The Band Be Easy, Michelle Miller, Nikos Westmoreland, Harvey Williams and many many more. […]

Joy Dennis performs for the 28th Annual Christmas on River Tree Lighting Ceremony at the Jacksonville Landing – Nov 28

[fap]FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 28th Annual Christmas on the St. Johns Tree Lighting Ceremony at the Jacksonville Landing Nov 28. DATE: November 28, 2014 TIME: 7pm COST: FREE PRI Productions presents Christmas on the River at The Jacksonville Landing brought to you by WJXT Channel 4 and Sleiman Enterprises. video platformvideo managementvideo solutionsvideo player The show will […]

Tamar Braxton, Rickey Smiley, Nephew Tommy, Lyfe Jennings + Joy Dennis Live – Nov 8 – Veteran’s Memorial Arena

[fap]         The Official Northwest Classic concert, The Love, Live, Laugh Tour will be held on Saturday, November 8th, 2014 at the Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena. The All-Star line up includes Tamar Braxton, Rickey Smiley, Nephew Tommy and Lyfe Jennings. And just added to the line-up… Jacksonville native, Joy Dennis will open […]

CONGRATULATIONS TO “Sunnie (Show Out) Smith” for winning 2 FREE tickets to catch Tamar Braxton, Rickey Smiley, Nephew Tommy, Lyfe Jennings + Joy Dennis Live – Nov 8 – Veteran’s Memorial Arena!!

[fap] CONGRATULATIONS TO “Sunnie (Show Out) Smith” for winning 2 FREE tickets to catch Tamar Braxton, Rickey Smiley, Nephew Tommy, Lyfe Jennings + Joy Dennis Live – Nov 8 – Veteran’s Memorial Arena!! Thanks to all who participated in this contest!! Stay tuned, more contests and giveaways to come!    

Joy Dennis’ New Single, “The Listening Party” (feat. J. Dash) is NOW Available for Pre-Order on iTunes

Guess what’s available for Pre-Order, just in time for my Birthday?! My New Single, “The Listening Party” (feat. J. Dash). Go Get It!! ($.99 on iTunes) https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/listening-party-feat.-j.-dash/id910285439 #JoinTheListeningParty Then Visit http://www.joydennismusic.com and #GetOnTheGuestlist for FREE entry to the Party Oct 11!!

Broken Compass

Some of the best advice anybody can receive involves diversification. Spreading one’s brand requires a step outside of the comfort zone.

Therein lies the dilemma. Say you have a good voice like Chicago born, Philly-raised and New York-schooled Amatus. The predictable play would be for her to place all of her eggs into the high risk/high reward vocal basket.

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SoulTracks First Listen: HeavyLight Shines On This Gil Scott Heron Remix

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They call themselves the HeavyLight Experience, a group of reasonably well known underground poets, singers, and musicians who are keeping their individual identities on the low on behalf of this collective experience, one intent on expressing the musical legacy of soul. Currently touring a tribute show entitled “The Originals,” highlighting the work of the ascended masters Gil Scott-Heron and Oscar Brown, Jr.

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SoulTracks Lost Gem: Carolyn Crawford will be “Here for You”

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Caroline Crawford’s career started by recording for Motown in the 60’s. Smokey Robinson wrote a minor R&B hit for her with ”My Smile Is Just a Frown (Turned Upside Down),” but after three singles her contract was not renewed. Her next recording project was as part of the group Hodges, James, Smith and Crawford, but after two single releases, she left the group.

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Big K.R.I.T. – “Mt. Olympus”

Big K.R.I.T. returns with the new self-produced single “Mt. Olympus” from his forthcoming Cadillactica LP. The track – a bass heavy treatise with sweeping strings – finds K.R.I.T. stutter stepping his way through a list of sharp criticisms that touch on everything from Kendrick Lamar‘s “Control” to swagger jackers and southern MC’s. Sparing no feelings, K.R.I.T. kills the track with considerable aplomb and sets the bar high ahead of his highly-anticipated sophomore LP, which is slated to drop via Def Jam this fall. Check the track below to listen to “Mt. Olympus.” Download the track via SoundCloud. Stay tuned for more from Big K.R.I.T.

The post Big K.R.I.T. – “Mt. Olympus” appeared first on Okayplayer.

“It Takes Two” performer DJ E-Z Rock dies at 46

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(April 28, 2014) Rodney Bryce, known better to hip-hop fans as DJ E-Z Rock, has died at age 46. The cause of his death is currently unknown. While he released other songs together, it was his collaboration with Rob Base on the Teddy Riley-produced “It Takes Two” that brought the greatest fame, becoming one of the most popular and recognizeable hip-hop songs of all time.

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Listen to The Roots “Tomorrow” feat. Raheem Devaughn [CDQ]

The Roots - "Tomorrow" (feat. Raheem Devaughn)

The Roots are determined to make this final weekend of April a pleasant one with the drop of “Tomorrow,” the second track to be revealed from their upcoming studio album ...and then you shot your cousin. The Roots “Tommorrow” features the DMV’s own Raheem Devaughn. The fellas already gave you a taste of what they had been brewing with the Hot97 debut of “When The People Cheer,” but this here serves as a follow up course, bringing some new flavors to the table to prep ya for the full course (Monday May 19th). “Tomorrow” drops out the low-end all together, letting the hopeful piano-driven ballad bop with faint whispers and Devaughn’s affectionate croon.

Its just the beginning of what is shaping up to be a hefty rollout for the highly anticipated concept album, marking over two decades of road glory and innovation (and now Late Night shenanigans). …&TYSYC will be available everywhere May 19th on Def Jam, but you can pre-order your copy (CD or Vinyl) over at MyPlayDirect today with signed posters and t-shirts, but be sure to keep your eyes out for some of our own bundles in the days to come over at the Okayplayer shop on May 1. If you’re in the tristate area, come rock with The Roots crew as this year’s Roots Picnic, where you’ll find them backing Snoop Dogg for what is sure to be some hazy funk at Festival Pier in Philly on May 31st. Listen to the latest from the boys below and be sure to keep it locked as we’ll have plenty more on …&TYSYC as we creep up to its release.

Previously on OkayplayerTV: “The Questions” with Raheem Devaughn

The post Listen to The Roots “Tomorrow” feat. Raheem Devaughn [CDQ] appeared first on Okayplayer.

Video Premiere: Behind The Scenes With J.Period On The Making Of The Brooklyn Nets’ Theme Song

The Roots Holiday Party shot by Mel D. Cole for Villageslum.com

We’ve heard a rumor that hip-hop and basketball pair well together. It’s a good bet that no one knows this better today than Brooklyn’s own prolific DJ J.Period. J has been getting busy for the entire NBA season as the official music curator of the Brooklyn Nets, and now we’ve been treated to some behind-the-scenes footage of the making of the theme song that has kicked off every home game of this season.

The clip from home to hardwood with looks into the Eminem, Biggie, Nate Dogg and Jorge Quintero cuts that Period sampled for the theme. “It’s just really been amazing experience. My two favorite things in the world are music and basketball, so this has been the perfect marriage of those two things,” Period muses at the clips end.

The premiere of tonight’s clip so appropriate given that later tonight KG, Paul Pierce and the rest of the Brooklyn Nets will play their playoff home opener against the Toronto Raptors. Some of the Nets’ success this year has been no doubt been due to the pre-game energy of Period’s track, and we’ve just learned that the game tonight at Barclay’s Center will kick off with a brand new theme song made specifically for the playoffs. We have to imagine that J’s ready to take it above the room to a whole ‘nother level.

Period’s pedigree stretches back to his past work with Q-Tip, John Legend, Nas and a little ol’ band known as The Roots, and his choice selection of music before and during Nets home games has proved over and over that he’s the perfect producer for the job. The man knows how to put in work, and at least musically-speaking the Brooklyn squad is in good hands. But then again, the Raptors have their own hip-hop icon..

The post Video Premiere: Behind The Scenes With J.Period On The Making Of The Brooklyn Nets’ Theme Song appeared first on Okayplayer.

The Boondocks Came Back With Record Ratings…But What Happened To Our Show? [Video + Review]

The Boondocks Came Back With Record Ratings, But What Happened To Our Show?

After what seemed like ages (really only 5 years) The Boondocks made its triumphant return to Adult Swim, putting all manner of fans and stans into a frenzy. Enough of one in fact, to incite a record setting ratings spike, blowing out primetime staples like NBC’s The Voice and even the NBA Playoffs with a whopping 1.4 millions viewers in the 18-34 demographic alone. An impressive return to the spotlight for what was once very much a cult following. But at what cost my dear patrons? Those that tuned in at 10:30pm Sunday saw a show that merely resembled the spectacle Aaron McGruder conceived and brought to the masses. On its face.

Once the first thirty seconds of the fourth and final season’s premiere episode “Pretty Boy Flizzy” ((watch below) played through, it was blatantly apparent that the moment we had all feared was upon us. Namely, that Aaron McGruder’s pen was in fact the blade that cut deepest. The sharp, poignant and (most importantly) relevant cultural commentary that we had come to expect from McGruder’s brainchild had been supplanted by a droll and bland mockery of our tradition’s most cherished voice of dissent. The one guy that was gonna look at the way things were and feed us that bitter pill of truth in a way that we could all swallow. But, shit. I think they even tried to posit a defense of Chris Brown on this thing.

The episode centered itself on the criminal mishaps of one Pretty Boy Flizzy, clearly modeled after the somewhat talented and inexplicably famous platinum blonde we all know as Chris Brown and his own run-ins with the law. We were forced to bear witness to Flizzy’s improprieties as he consistently let down his fans in a series of terribly obvious blunders involving the beating of his girlfriend, the robbing of a convenience store and scuffling in the VIP with another major r&b star. While the show does a decent job of putting the burden of responsibility onto Flizzy’s (Breezy’s) shoulders, they essentially provide him with a cop-out in the end, chalking up all of these very public incidents to his lack of ability to stay relevant.

So if we can extrapolate a life lesson from the story arc of this episode, it’s this: If you’re a public figure in the hip-hop community and you happen to have a rap-sheet as tall as your walk-up, that’s OK…as long as you’re tactical about creating those spectacles as part of some grande marketing ploy. Really, people? Aside from picking literally the smallest speck on the windshield to go after, you choose that as your lead-off? Your Season Premiere and don’t-call-it-a-comeback? Has nothing else happened that strikes you as even marginally more relevant than what Chris Fine Motherfvckin China Brown has failed to accomplish in the past five years? Miley’s take-over? Obama’s reelection? Hell, Fukoshima? Yeah, starting things off with Trayvon probably would have been a bit heavy, but Chris Brown though? Really?

I was someone who truly believed that we should all reserve our judgement on what a show of this nature could be like without it’s archetype. There were indications that MacGruder’s involvement on Season 3 was somewhat hands off, with no dire results. Even post-MacGruder Team Boondocks contains some voices we know and trust (up to and including Okayplayer co-founder Angela Nissell), who has a co-writer credit on this episode). But having tasted the pudding, this viewer is forced to conclude that the early-bird naysayers scored a rare victory on this one. Luckily, we’ve long known that McGruder’s no one-trick nothing, developing his Black Jesus webisode series into a full-length series where he will take to his throne once more as one of hip-hop pop culture’s most pivotal voices. If this premiere is an indication of life after MacGruder on The Boondocks, then it’s a sad, sad loss folks. One that I will long mourn, but with McG putting his wits to work on a project that seems truly worth its weight, there’s still hope for us to see the champion resurrected in a new avatar. So here’s to Black Jesus. R.I.P. Huey, Riley and Grandpa Freeman. You will be sorely missed.

The post The Boondocks Came Back With Record Ratings…But What Happened To Our Show? [Video + Review] appeared first on Okayplayer.

Schoolboy Q – “Studio” (feat. BJ The Chicago Kid) [Official Video]

Schoolboy Q  - "Studio" (feat. BJ The Chicago Kid) [Official Video]

Schoolboy Q lets loose some visuals for his latest single “Studio” featuring Chitown crooner BJ The Chicago Kid, off the astral major label debut Oxymoron. The Swiff- D produced bed-rocker gets the perfect compliment from some steamy black & white NSFW eye-candy, providing a needed muse for the visual. We heard the Midwest/all-west collab live for Jimmy Kimmel just a few short weeks ago, but this here is the full treatment, delivered in a cloud of kush. Rock with the latest visuals from Schoolboy Q & Co below and be sure to cop his Oxymoron LP via iTunes to get up on all the fuss.

The post Schoolboy Q – “Studio” (feat. BJ The Chicago Kid) [Official Video] appeared first on Okayplayer.

Wu-Tang Drama Continues: RZA Responds to Raekwon’s “Strike” On Hot97

Wu-Tang fans have had painstaking few months. With the foremost lyrical figure (Raekwon) and the group’s towering leader (RZA) engaged in some media-based squabbling, its difficult to sustain even the smallest modicum of hope for the group’s future. In a wildly candid interview with Hot97 in a promo run for his upcoming role in Brick Mansions, Bobby Digital broke down things on his end, giving proper lip service to the way media outlets have handled the situation and how he doesn’t see a way for there to be a Wu-Tang without The Chef.

While Rae’s concerns were widely administrative, Bobby Digital begged his brother and all of the affiliates to speak amongst themselves in regards to Wu matters. Though it seems that money math might be what’s really getting in between these, it goes without saying that once the blogosphere catches wind of these things, they’ll become so overly sensationalized that people tend to pick a side without having a clear picture of what is going on at ground-level. So there’s definitely still some murky water between the two Rs of Wu, but all of the attention the Shaolin Kings have garnered as of late in regards to both their upcoming — potentially Chef-less– A Better Tomorrow LP and the several years in the making secret album, there’s still plenty to keep the hopeful going. Here’s to a calm at the end of this typhoon. You can watch RZA comment on all the beef below, but keep your eyes and ears locked for the next chapter in this latest Wu- Tang saga.

The post Wu-Tang Drama Continues: RZA Responds to Raekwon’s “Strike” On Hot97 appeared first on Okayplayer.

Prince Wastes No Time, Drops “The Breakdown”

Prince Wastes No Time, Drops "The Breakdown"

Prince is leading an expedient charge to repopulate the planet with his ultraviolet funk. Within roughly 12 hours of breaking to the world that he and his former label Warner Brothers were inking a global licensing partnership on Friday, we got “The Breakdown,” a dynamic true-to-form offering from his Purple Majesty. The track commences with a gentle synth progression reminiscent of ”When 2 R In Love”, slipping into a dirty driving ballad, letting loose the powerhouse vocals we’ve come to expect from the bite-sized funkateer. These are four wholly gratifying minutes for the Paisley patron in ya, perfect for the nightcap on your hazy Sunday. It seems we’ll have plenty more from Mr Rogers Nelson soon, so be sure to keep it locked. Listen to “The Breakdown”, a stirring new single from Prince below and cop via iTunes today.

spotted at CoS

The post Prince Wastes No Time, Drops “The Breakdown” appeared first on Okayplayer.

Okayplayer’s Record Store Day Release Round-Up

OKP's Top Record Store Day Releases

Record Store Day is upon us kind crate diggers. And in celebration of our adored pastime, we’re extending a hefty list of our favorite RSD releases to provide a few points of reference for tomorrow’s vinyl crawl. We’ve got records spanning 50 years of funk; from the organic foundational grooves of The JBs to the electro-acoustic strut of Moses Sumney. Not to mention a few must-cop reissues and even something to read to get you through that hazy Sunday. So peep our map of the illest RSD drops, cause we certainly wouldn’t have a day like this for cassettes. Happy diggin fam.

The post Okayplayer’s Record Store Day Release Round-Up appeared first on Okayplayer.

Okayplayer’s Complete Guide To Summer Music Festivals 2014

Questlove x D'Angelo Brothers In Arms, in Philadelphia July 3, 2013

Drums, please! Don’t let the occasional light dusting of snow (at least here in NYC) fool you. With the Outkast reunion and other attendant madness that unfolded at Coachella this past week, the summer festival has officially kicked off. And with so many excellent music festivals filling up the calendar we had no choice but to bring you the Okayplayer’s Complete Summer Festival Guide of 2014 extra-early. Nas, ‘Kast and Kanye will be hitting the global circuit hard along with a massive cast of supporting hip-hop, funk, r&b, jazz and electronic acts. But keep a keen eye: our list also includes rare one-off performances from the likes of Prince, Frank Ocean and Madlib, among many others. We’ve got our eyes on everything from the West Coast to the Swiss riviera in what is definitely our most internationable festival rundown yet. Choosing which weekend (or two, or three) to spend your tax return on won’t be easy, but at least now you’ll be well-informed. Click through the list for artist highlights, ticketing information and tips on how to make the most of each event. Your 2014 summer music festival rundown starts now.

The post Okayplayer’s Complete Guide To Summer Music Festivals 2014 appeared first on Okayplayer.

First Listen: Bradd Marquis and Tess Henley don’t want to “Break Up”

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Trenton, New Jersey born and raised singer Bradd Marquis is an artist who does it all: writes, sings and produces his own material. And the church-raised performer has been raising expectations for the past few years from fans who’ve had the pleasure of hearing him perform.

Love Will Find a Way

Click on CD cover to order Thank You at Amazon.com

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DJ Prince “Just A Lil Bit” [Official Video]

DJ Prince

The homie DJ Prince starts your monday off right with something light. The NY emcee/producer drops his third video off of his Large Up approved mixtape, Test My Sound. Listen to Prince drop some bars on his self-produced track, “Just A Lil Bit.” Says Prince of the his sound: “I’m doing it ‘for the youth dem,’ I’m all about the kids and proper teachings to who’s to come after us. emphasizing originality, constantly creating, and putting their energy in the universe.” Video directed by Hoes To Hollywood. Look for Test My Sound the album to drop next month (the shit is crazy).

The post DJ Prince “Just A Lil Bit” [Official Video] appeared first on Okayplayer.

Watch Outkast Reunite At Coachella With Future & Janelle Monáe

outkast coachella photo Justin Jay

photo courtesy of Justin Jay

Last night Outkast kicked off their 40+ festival run reunion at Coachella with a 90 minute performance spanning 27 songs and guest appearances from fellow ATLiens Janelle Monáe, Future, Sleepy Brown, and if not for Coachella curfew, Killer Mike too. But fear not if you missed out on the official start of ‘Kast’s second coming. ?uestlove provided the play by play of the live stream (which you can watch in full below).

mad as hell. friggin Coachella knows better than to let the most anticipated act go on the 1st night. wtf,i work on fridays! #Outkast20

— Questlove Jenkins (@questlove) April 12, 2014

mofos doin VIBRATE. my dumb arse got a headache eatin turkey hot dogs half bingin season 3 of Downton Abbey cause i watched everything else — Questlove Jenkins (@questlove) April 12, 2014

Pitchy. — Questlove Jenkins (@questlove) April 12, 2014

since they deep cuttin, i need “Life In The Day….”, “Toilet Tisha” “Reset” & “Mainstream” too #Outkast20

— Questlove Jenkins (@questlove) April 12, 2014

crassssh craaaaashsssss

— Questlove Jenkins (@questlove) April 12, 2014

last half of Roses is what my dad thinks rappidy rap rap rap is. : (

— Questlove Jenkins (@questlove) April 12, 2014

based on that verse….has 3stacks not eaten in 11 years then? #NeckAndNeck

— Questlove Jenkins (@questlove) April 12, 2014

lol at that whatever countoff. come on man SELL THAT ISH!

— Questlove Jenkins (@questlove) April 12, 2014

dude i laughed so hard i think i number 2oo’d RT: @SpecBoogie ni**a Dre doing Hey Ya like his moms told him to pick a switch

— Questlove Jenkins (@questlove) April 12, 2014

the man do NOT play with overage$. at TALL. this is why i am THE most meticulous every second accounted for bandleader. #UnionShows

— Questlove Jenkins (@questlove) April 12, 2014

lessons to be learned tonight (all said in love/constructive advice) 1. give each song a 5 min slot, i.e. if 90 mins? plan 18 songs

— Questlove Jenkins (@questlove) April 12, 2014

more lessons 2. plan show BACKWARDS—to avoid cutoff debacles plan what ABSOLUTE last song must be, work way to the top.

— Questlove Jenkins (@questlove) April 12, 2014

and more 3.plan a 4 suite attack system: a) opening grab you by neck 4 b) your old school nostalgia 4 c) deep cut/artistic portion 4 (cont)

— Questlove Jenkins (@questlove) April 12, 2014

—look. i already taught class today & unsolicited info is (blah) personally i enjoyed ish (i dozed off before the last point lol)

— Questlove Jenkins (@questlove) April 12, 2014

oh last point!—last 4 joints= breathless race to finish (extra 2 for encore)–keep in mind its been 10 yrs for Kast and this is show 1

— Questlove Jenkins (@questlove) April 12, 2014

lot of mixed feelings about the show. its gonna take time for chemistry and rhythm and tech issues to gel. best part of the night tho?

— Questlove Jenkins (@questlove) April 12, 2014

best part? is Outkast has us up and 4:40 in the morning discussing hip hop. which is incredible. can’t wait til show hits east coast.

— Questlove Jenkins (@questlove) April 12, 2014

#MoreUnsolicitedisms people on my timeline, problem is never a demographic that doesn’t know material. Problem starts if we don’t TEACH them

— Questlove Jenkins (@questlove) April 12, 2014

For all that were chagrined that the coachella crowd seemed non responsive (or tired at midnight?) Start schooling your timeline on dope ish

— Questlove Jenkins (@questlove) April 12, 2014

I too used to “smh” at people like “how do you not know ‘Off The Wall’ or PE or Floyd?–now I ask “who here doesn’t know (artist)?” #Teach

— Questlove Jenkins (@questlove) April 12, 2014

Ok I promise no more sermons. Its just when I see reckless tawk in my timeline I gotta say somethin!

— Questlove Jenkins (@questlove) April 12, 2014

Do me a favor. Check the ATLiens tracklisting. Matter of fact ANYone tell me cut 10 please? RT @peachesthequeen: WHATEVER WRONG IS WRONG!

— Questlove Jenkins (@questlove) April 12, 2014

Setlist:
B.O.B.
Gasoline Dreams
ATLiens
Skew It on the Bar-B
Rosa Parks
Da Art of Storytellin’, Part 1
Aquemini
SpottieOttieDopaliscious (with Sleepy Brown)
Bowtie (with Sleepy Brown)
Shutterbugg
Ghetto Musick
Tightrope (with Janelle Monáe)
Kryptonite (I’m on It)
Vibrate
She Lives in My Lap
Prototype
Behold a Lady
Roses
Same Damn Time (with Future)
Ain’t No Way Around It (with Future)
Benz Friends (Whatchutola) (with Future)
Hootie Hoo
Elevators (Me & You)
Ms. Jackson
So Fresh, So Clean (with Sleepy Brown)
The Way You Move (with Sleepy Brown)
Hey Ya!

The post Watch Outkast Reunite At Coachella With Future & Janelle Monáe appeared first on Okayplayer.

Common & Kanye West Announce AAHH Music + Jobs Youth Festival In Chicago

Common+Kanye Announce AAHH! Fest

Today, the Common Ground FoundationCommon‘s education non-profit—and Donda’s House IncKanye West‘s youth and art non-profit— met with the Chicago Urban League to discuss both a promising new youth jobs initiative and an exciting new summer fest—AAHH! Fest 2014. The Common Ground Foundation and Donda’s House detailed from their Museum of Contemporary Arts press conference that they will be working toward commitments from “government, nonprofit and for-profit stakeholders to push for more funding and resources to create youth employment opportunities.”

The two artists are taking the initiative and announced the beginnings of AAHH! Fest which will notably feature a job-shadowing for community youths over the course of the two day festival. The job-shadowing program “allows youth to learn operations connected to producing a high-level outdoor special event.”

The festival’s day one will feature “a diverse, all-star line-up of talent from across the country and Chicago” while day two, curated by Kanye’s Donda House, will show off Chicago’s newest talents. Hosted at 6300 S. Hayed Drive from September 20-21, AAHH! Fest– a festival that targets the city’s young unemployed and is positioned towards the tail-end of festival season– is poised to hit all the right notes.

The post Common & Kanye West Announce AAHH Music + Jobs Youth Festival In Chicago appeared first on Okayplayer.

Madlib Makes A Beat From Scratch Live

Madlib Makes A Beat From Scratch Live

Madlib shows us exactly how he championed his title as The Beat Konducta as he builds a beat from scratch live. The man whose prolific output has dawned classic collaborations with J Dilla (Jaylib,) MF DOOM (Madvillainy) and more recently Freddie Gibbs gives us a keen window into the breadth of his musicianship and chop styles as he quickly organizes a live drum take, a programmed drum track and an old-soul cut into one gleaming specimen of a production. Get wise and maybe pick up a pointer or two from the Beat Konducta as he chops live below and be sure to cop his gangstariffic collab with Freddie Gibbs Piñata via iTunes today.

spotted at MissInfo

The post Madlib Makes A Beat From Scratch Live appeared first on Okayplayer.

Janelle Monáe Performs “What Is Love” On The Today Show

Janelle Monáe Brings The Funk, Performs "What Is Love" On The Today Show

Janelle Monáe got on the good foot as she two-stepped and mashed potatoed all across the stage yesterday morning, performing “What Is Love” off Rio 2 OST. Her “Funky Nassau” recalling groove made even the most hazy eyed fandroid get to it, as the electric Miss Monáe put on a show for the ages at Rock Center. You can peep her performing her contribution to the animated feature’s soundtrack, but stay tuned for more from the Funky Android and be sure to brace your self, as the Roots Picnic is but a few short weeks away at this point. And as you can see, Miss Monae don’t mess around. Cop tickets to the funkiest show this side of the Mason-Dixon via RootsPicnic.com today.

The post Janelle Monáe Performs “What Is Love” On The Today Show appeared first on Okayplayer.

Pharoahe Monch x Black Thought – “Rapid Eye Movement”

Pharoahe Monch live on stage

Pharoahe Monch‘s collabo with Black Thought of The Roots –”Rapid Eye Movement”–has leaked online in advance of Monch’s much-anticipated album PTSD. Not gonna waste too much digital ink on this one cause the title kinda says it all. And by ‘it all’ I mean that it says: hide your kiiiiiiids…! Listen to the Marco Polo-produced banger below and read our exclusive Okayplayer Interview with Pharoahe Monch here, covering the state of hip-hop and the state of his own mental health (true story) from a gun’s-eye point of view.

The post Pharoahe Monch x Black Thought – “Rapid Eye Movement” appeared first on Okayplayer.

Pharoahe Monch Talks ‘PTSD’ At ‘NY LOVES DILLA’ On ThisIs50

Pharoahe Monch Talks 'PTSD' & Hip-Hop Culture On ThisIs50

Pharoahe Monch took the time to rap a bit with ThisIs50 at a surprise appearance at the inaugural NY LOVES DILLA event last month. Its a loose one for Pharoahe, as it seems he’s shook off any semblance of the depression his upcoming album PTSD is based on. Drink in hand, Monch shouts out Dilla (duh) as well as all of the guest features slated for the album, which drops a week from today. So don’t sleep on the PTSD project and check in with your boy Monch as he kicks it behind the scenes at the very first NY LOVES DILLA show. Pre-order for PTSD is available via iTunes.

The post Pharoahe Monch Talks ‘PTSD’ At ‘NY LOVES DILLA’ On ThisIs50 appeared first on Okayplayer.

Pharrell’s SNL Sketch and “Happy” & “Marilyn Monroe” Performance

Pharrell Marilyn Monroe on SNL

On the night of his 41st birthday and one month removed from dropping his G I R L LP, Pharrell can now cross SNL music guest off his bucket (hat) list. Watch the videos below of Pharrell performing “Happy” backed by a young dance troupe before taking the stage once more for a special rendition of “Marilyn Monroe” with help from Hans Zimmer and an all female string section. Pharrell’s SNL appearance also managed to utilize his acting chops later in the episode alongside Buffalo Girls high hat-donning Kenan Thompson and Taran Killam and a Rent-singing Anna Kendrick.

Pharrell on SNL

The post Pharrell’s SNL Sketch and “Happy” & “Marilyn Monroe” Performance appeared first on Okayplayer.

James Fauntleroy Drops 2 New Songs: “Peace” + “Year Round”

James Fauntleroy Keeps The Heat Coming With "Floating Away" feat. India Shawn

James Fauntleroy has been releasing a bunch of freebies on the net — previously he hit us with the song “A Beautiful Mind” and now he’s dropped two new tracks “Peace” and “Year Round.” You may remember his voice from Drake’s track “Girls Love Beyoncé” but Fauntleroy flaunts a stacked resume – he’s a former member of production team The Underdogs and a current member of No I.D.‘s hop-hop collective Cocaine ’80s (other members include Jhene Aiko and Common). As a songwriter he’s penned Jordin Sparks‘ “No Air”, Chris Brown’s “Take You Down” and “Superhuman,” Ciara’s “Love, Sex, Magic” — along with co-writing 6 tracks on Rihanna’s LP Rated R and every song on Justin Timberlake’s 20/20 Experience. He’s also given his voice to some of hip-hops biggest records (Kanye West + GOOD Music‘s Cruel Summer, J-Cole‘s Born Sinner, and Jay-Z‘s Magna Carta Holy Grail, to name a few). If that were not enough to put this man on the map — He won a Grammy award for best the Grammy Award for Best R&B Song for co-writing “Pusher Love Girl” with JT.

The tracks Fauntleroy has been spoiling us with are refreshing. Without electric elements, Fauntleroy keeps us engaged with blues-infused pop acoustics. “Peace” is a raw lullaby that softly wraps us in acoustic energy. The words of the song remind us of Fauntleroy’s pop sensibilities and seeing as he’s written for Frank Ocean, it’s not strange that the melodies speak to qualities we’d hear in one of his compositions. “Year Round,” another sweet acoustic love song, takes us through the seasons of prospect. With “Year” Round” being the fifth installment of Fauntleroy’s acoustic teases, the only question we can ask, is whether Fauntleroy’s solo album String Theory (set for release this year) will bring us the beautiful ballads he’s presented thus far. Check out Fauntleroy’s previous releases + Stream “Peace” and “Year Round” below.

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The 2014 Spring World Natural Hair, Health and Beauty Show

A ‘lil  Meet & Greet photography from the hair show. Hair by Lizette Wright of Styles 2 Inspire April 26-27, 2014 www.naturalhairshow.org Georgia International Convention Center, 2000 Convention Center Concourse College Park, GA 30337 Taliah Waajid Natural Hair Care Products has been the proud presenter of the Taliah Waajid World Natural Hair, Health, & Beauty Show […]

Chuck Inglish x Action Bronson – “Gametime”

Chuck Inglish x Action Bronson - "Gametime"

Action Bronson is the latest showstopper to team up with MC/producer Chuck Inglish on this ill boom-bap workout “Gametime” off Chuck’s upcoming collab-heavy Convertibles LP. Bronsolinio and Inglish trade off flame over a vibraphone loop and big drums and claps, leaving ashes on this short head-knocker. Chuck’s Convertibles is due out April 8th with a star-studded roster of funkateers lending their hands to the project, including the aforementioned Queens bomber, Chromeo, Mac Miller, Ab-Soul, Chance The Rapper and so many more. Listen to the latest from Chuck Inglish and Action Bronson below and be sure to keep it locked to the realm for more from the young gun.

spotted at HHNM

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Okayafrica Video: Young Fathers Chop It Up With Okayafrica TV At SXSW

Okayafrica Video: Young Fathers Chop It Up With Okayafrica TV At SXSW

Young Fathers has come along way since we first featured them all those weeks ago. Recently they took the time to rap with the homies Okayafrica while they were in Austin for one of our ruckus SXSW showcases, delving into some origin stories amongst a slew of other tidbits we’ve been wracking our brains over since their The Scottish/Liberian/Nigerian trio have taken their alt-hop madness across the great big pond to show the states their collective is one of fortitude and dynamic influence, stirring the pot to a perfect simmer of calamitous hooks over dirty left-field funk. Watch the Edinburgh Young Fathers mix it up with the sister site below and be sure to cop that new record DEAD via iTunes.

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Hannibal Buress Talks Stand-Up, Fame & Ballet With The Champs

The Champs Podcast Featuring The Comedic Stylings Of Neal Brennan & Moshe Kasher

Hannibal Buress sits in on the latest edition of The Champs podcast with to talk stand-up comedy, fame & more with hosts Neal Brennan and Moshe Kasher. Buress talks about Live From Chicago – his upcoming Comedy Central special, which airs on March 29th. The guys also discuss bromances, buying homes, supplemental businesses. They also talk the certain freedoms and other interesting things that fame usually affords you. Check the track below to listen to Hannibal Buress’ chat with Neal Brennan and Moshe Kasher. Stay tuned for more from The Champs.

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Hezekiah x Range Da Messenga – “Hologram Dreams” [Official Video]

Hezekiah Drops The Official Video For "Hologram Dreams" Featuring Range Da Messenga, Directed By King Red Rose

Hezekiah preps fans for his forthcoming project entitled Dreams Don’t Chase Themselves with the official video for “Hologram Dreams” featuring Range Da Messenga. The video produced by Hez and co-director King Red Rose is a black and white clip that chronicles the cold reality of life’s peaks and valleys. The track about redemption anchors the emotionally dense, action-packed footage. Range Da Messenga punctuates the soulful production, following Hez’s lead with a strong vocal performance. Check the footage below to watch the official video for “Hologram Dreams” from Hezekiah. Purchase the track via Bandcamp. Stay tuned for more.

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Win Tickets To See Okayafrica Presents: Chop And Quench “The Fela! Band” At The Apollo

Win Free Tickets To See Chop And Quench "The Fela! Band"

Our fam over at Okayafrica are granting you the opportunity to win free tickets to experience the electric Chop And Quench aka “The Fela! Band” lead by TONY Award nominee Sahr Ngaujah at The Apollo Theatre on April 4th. The evening will be opened by a set from Canada by Ghana crooner/songwriter and OKA superlative winner Kae Sun, starting the night off with his roots-infused brand of funk. The night is presented by Okayfrica and The Apollo, adding to the Harlem landmarks’s already stellar four day series Africa Now!, which is present in partnership with World Music Institute. For more information head over to the sister site to enter for your chance to win free tickets to one of NYC’s most seasoned collectives of Afrobeat musicians and a young gun tearing it down at the Apollo next Friday.

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Talib Kweli & Ma Dukes Discuss J Dilla’s Legacy On The Combat Jack Show

Talib Kweli & Ma Dukes Take To Combat Jack To Discuss J Dilla's Legacy

Talib Kweli and J Dilla‘s mother Ma Dukes took to the internets to discuss the legacy of their friend and son, speaking to the immense contribution made by Detroit’s supreme purveyor of the dirty drum swing. They rapped a bit on Jay Dee’s public persona (which was tremendously shy), the household and family that shaped his keen musical mind, the early records that turned him out–even in the crib– and then ultimately, how Dilla’s estate is being posthumously handled. Kweli spits his own stories from being on the outer circle of Dilla’s cronies, really cementing the humility and poise of the GOAT. Its Dilla tale after Dilla tale on this edition of The Combat Jack Show, perfect for any hip-hop historian or a mere Dilla enthusiast. Listen to Ma Dukes and Talib Kweli speak to the immeasurable influence of the late J Dilla below.

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Experience One Spark

  Creativity and entrepreneurship take center stage at One Spark 2014. Experience the latest in art, innovation, music, science and technology as One Spark takes over downtown Jacksonville to bring crowdfunding live and in person. Meet Creators and learn about their passions while enjoying great food, entertainment and experiencing the best of what downtown Jacksonville […]

That Time Hannibal Buress Pretended To Be Childish Gambino’s Agent

That Time Hannibal Buress Pretended To Be Childish Gambino's Agent

If you were an burgeoning mainstay musician or comedian and wanted to see someone live, what kind of shenanigans would you pull to make it happen? Well, Hannibal Buress seems to have made off with a quick one. When enticed by the notion of seeing Eddie Griffin live, instead of buying a ticket like every other other individual that wanted to bask in the comedic glory of a stand-up great, Hannibal chose a different route. He opted to impersonate the agent of the first celebrity that came to mind -in this case, none other than Childish Gambino– and put on a bit of show for the hospitality coordinator. Until of course he gets figured out. Bear witness to the unbridled audacity of one Hannibal Buress in a hilarious excerpt from his upcoming hour-long Comedy Central special below. Then peep Gambino’s verification of the ordeal after the jump.

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The Hollywood Experience with Saxophonist Aaron Bing

#TheHollywoodExperience with #AaronBing is happy to announce the addition of Joy Dennis to our event! http://joydennismusic.com/us/ CLICK HERE FOR TICKETS TO THE SHOW—-> http://m.ticketmaster.com/aaron-bing-jacksonville-florida-03-30-2014/event/22004C47F050A1BC?artistid=709636&majorcatid=10001&minorcatid=4&tm_link=search_msg-0_22004C47F050A1BC VIP & RED CARPET Access CLICK HERE —–> https://www.eventbrite.com/e/aaron-bing-in-concert-tickets-10544788747 Attended the VIP Pre-Show Reception and Red Carpet Hollywood Experience This show will feature new music from his new release “OTRA PARTE DE MI” along with a brief […]

OkayPrayer: The Spirit Speaks Through The Jones Family Singers [Album Premiere + Interview]

The Jones Family Singers - The Spirit Speaks (Okayplayer Premiere)

“The roots of the “Hard Gospel” style of the Jones Family can be traced to the beginning of the 20th century, when slave songs became “shout songs.” After the Pentecostal movement of Holy Ghost soul possession was born on Azusa Street in Los Angeles in 1906, churchgoers spoke in tongues, rolled in the aisles and clapped their hands in sanctified percussion. Musical instruments, once considered the tools of the devil, were used to punctuate the testimony and wild, foot-stomping dances broke out at will. This was the roots of rock “n’ roll.”

– Michael Corcoran, from the liner notes to The Spirit Speaks.

One hundred and eight years later, we are still figuring out what happened in that little church on Azusa Street in Los Angeles. Many argue, as Michael Corcoran does, that along with Pentecostalism, rock n’ roll was born in that storefront church. Call it the Holy Spirit, call it energy, call it a good time. We can argue about what to call it, but we all recognize when it comes. As anyone with eyes to see can plainly witness, the Jones Family Singers got it. And we are lucky they share it outside of the walls of the church that claim them as their own. Their new record, The Spirit Speaks finds them branching out from the footstomping Pentecostal two-beat and into funk and soul. Like many gospel groups, this exploration comes with a mixture of trepidation and confidence. The combination creates a kind of joy that is hard to find in contemporary music. Okayplayer is proud to host the online debut of the new album with this full audio stream of The Spirit Speaks, due out April 1st, 2014 via Arts+Labor. Rev. Vince Anderson, musician, pastor and author of our semi-regular dirty gospel column, OkayPrayer, spoke with Bishop Fred Jones, and Fred Jones Jr. of the Jones Family Singers to introduce us to the singers behind the audible spirit. Stream the album below and scroll down to read their conversation.

Okayplayer: Is it springtime in Texas?

Bishop Fred Jones: For the most part. The weather changes day after day. In fact, not the next day, but the same day.

OKP: I really enjoyed the record. I hear a lot contemporary gospel influences, like Tye Tribbett or Deitrick Haddon, but with a more traditional sound and production. Where do you find yourself drawing from? What are your musical and production inspirations?

Fred Jones, Jr.: I listen to Mary Mary and Kirk Franklin but I also listen to a lot of old school quartets like the Mighty Clouds of Joy. What I try to do is fuse the two, try to get the best of both worlds and then bring my own style to it as well. The way I look at it, there is a variety of different people out there, and I’d like our music to reach all of them.

OKP: Can you tell us what Sunday mornings at Mount Zion Church of God In Christ in Markham, TX look like?

BFJ: Sunday Mornings at Mt. Zion Church are lively. A wild fire. An untamed fire. A spontaneous coming together. Everybody pitching in, feeling the spirit and happy to be in the mix. That all fuses together and makes for a live Pentecostal experience.

OKP: Beautiful. How long have you been there?

BFJ: I’ve been in that particular church for a little over 30 years.

OKP: Because of the family nature of your group, and the soul or r&b take on gospel, it’s hard to avoid the Staple Singers comparison. Like the Staple Singers, the Jones Family Singers perform in both clubs and churches. The Staple Singers received criticism for that. Have you encountered anything similar?

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Angel Haze Blasts Virgin Airlines for Discrimination | SPIN | Music News

Angel Haze did not have a good flight this morning. As Buzzfeed points out, the outspoken rapper live-tweeted onboard a Virgin Atlantic flight, where she witnessed alleged discrimination by the staff toward a fellow passenger. Here’s how it went down: Click the Link to read full article: Angel Haze Blasts Virgin Airlines for Discrimination | SPIN | […]

The Boondocks’ Aaron McGruder Has No Hand In The Show’s 4th Season

Aaron McGruder Confirms Lack Of Involvement In Long-Awaited Fourth Season Of 'The Boondocks'

The Boondocks‘ long-awaited 4th season may leave some fans feeling conflicted ahead of its impending debut with the news that creator and executive producer Aaron McGruder had no involvement in the production. Adult Swim reportedly confirmed McGruder’s absence from the upcoming season in a recent press release, which stated:

“this season was produced without the involvement of Aaron McGruder, when a mutually agreeable production schedule could not be determined.​”

The news confirms the fears of some fans, who suspected that McGruder might not have been involved after he announced on Facebook via the Black Jesus page that The Boondocks‘ account had been hijacked:

“Just found out someone has hijacked THE BOONDOCKS Facebook page. This was done without my permission and I have absolutely no control over the content being posted as of Friday, March 14.”

Though McGruder has issued no official statement on the matter, he has reportedly confirmed that he has not had any involvement in the upcoming season. There has been no word from Adult Swim or Aaron McGruder regarding what prompted his lack of involvement. The Boondocks is set to begin airing all new episodes on April 21st. The new season follows a four-year hiatus that had many fans fretting over whether the show would actually return. Now that the show is set to air without its fearless leader at helm, it will be interesting to see what fans think.

Spotted at TR.

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