It’s that time of year again or the BET Awards. I remember when I was in middle school I would be excited to watch the show. Now it’s just gotten to be too generic, the winners are too predictable and there’s nothing really special about the performances. It’s amazing that the show has lasted 14 years. Maybe next year they’ll do something special for the 15th annual. Check out my 2014 performance review here.
Janelle Monáe has returned with new music, but I am still high off her amazing video to ‘Electric Lady.’ Yeah that dropped last year, but it’s still one of my favorites. She’s taking her label, Wondaland, to the next level with new talent and a different look that fans of hers are not quite accustomed to. When she came on to the scene she was known for tuxedos and pinned up hair. It was a mystery as to why she didn’t show off her assets when clearly she wanted to be respected for her talent and not the stereotype placed on her being a female artist. What stereotype you must ask? The stereotype of having to go extremely pop and have minimal lyrics and concepts to get on the radio and get a buzz or have a rapper on your track and be half naked in a video. No shade to those that have done it, but that’s the stereotype that so many artists fall into. This time around with this track ‘Yoga,’ it’s a different side of Ms. Monae. A side that seems to be getting a lot of heat. Let’s get into the video review.
I didn’t blog about the song ‘Yoga’ when it was released simply because I wasn’t feeling it. I did enjoy ‘Classic Man‘ from her artist Jidenna, but I guess I wasn’t expecting the follow-up track to be so mellow. Then again, duh, check the title. The lyrics in the first verse are very suggestive with ode to the yoga terminology. This is not something Janelle usually sings:
Let yo booty do that yoga.
In the second verse she gets a bit more philosophical which really ties the track together. She’s singing about not being conformed to what and who people want you to be. It’s okay to have your own lane. It’s okay to “bend” and try things that are new, but never “break.” Top trending line:
You cannot police me, get off my areola.
As for Jidenna’s verse it gets no more suggestive tun that. He refers to the downward dog and insists on breaking in and stretching whatever lady. Pretty self explanatory.
As for the video it begins with Janelle in a Sukhasana pose. From there she gets into the music dancing in front of a mirror in ripped jeans, a cropped top, dope pinup into a fishtail braid and to top off the look a pair of heels. By the hook she’s doing a super chill two step, or as the modern day calls it, “swag surf.”
By the second verse she’s in another cropped set, this time a white cropped holed sweater with white leggings, heels to match and a dope crown. Her backup dancers are swagged out as well with white crop tops, red leggings and matching red heels.
Switching to Jidenna he looks the same as he did in his cover art for ‘Classic Man’ and a part of me wonders if his attire will ever change into something other than the suit that makes every outfit of his look the same. He’s in a diner with two ladies serving him as he sings his lines. Then there’s a fan club outside the window who then burst into the diner which draws near to the end of the songs. Janelle rolls in and stands on the counter in her dope jacket and they hit that swag surf one last time for good measure. I love when the music stops, similar to the ‘Classic Man’ video they are really turning up and having fun.
It’s great to see this side of Janelle and that she’s more open to showing her sexuality and that she can get down too. She look absolutely beautiful, as always, but shows that a little bit of skin goes a long way. I’m excited to listen to The Eephus. A video makes a song and this track can be added to my rotation.
Check out the video below:
I stumbled across this track as I’m always looking for new content to review on the blog. I read that Janelle Monaè would be releasing a new EP titled, The Eephus and that one of the tracks would be ‘Classic Man’, Jidenna featuring Roman GianArthur. Both artists are featured on . I love Janelle Monáe’s sound and with this being her label and artists she chose I expect great music.
The song doesn’t sound as original as I thought it would be as far as sound nor lyrically. He’s singing about being a “classic man” and from the video compared to this day in age he’s an old soul. He’s clean cut opposed to his pants being sagged below his butt. The sound is no leap of faith into something new, but its safe to get a buzz and get noticed.
Getting back to the lyrics, he sings about being a classic man, but the lyrics are just catchy and in certain areas I really didn’t know what was being sung. He’s singing about being that guy that everyone loves and wants to be and the ladies want to be with him. Sounds like other songs I’ve heard except he’s not rapping, not as much cursing, and he’s smoother with the lingo.
Vocally while he’s said to be sining it’s more auto tune behind that and I would like to hear what both men have to offer vocally. Janelle Monàe has a beautiful voice and I really want to hear if these two can sing a ballad. Overall I really like the track, but it’s nothing that’s really innovative. It’s catchy though. I’m still interested in hearing the EP and the upcoming track he has with Janelle titled Yoga.’ Well, I’m more so interested in whether it will be upbeat or a slow jam.
As for the video it’s very reminiscent to me of the party scene in The Great Gatsby except with an urban feel. Check out the video below:
Be sure to check out my year end review HERE and my non-music obsessions HERE. Cheers to great music and more reviews here on Music Moving Forward in 2015. Check out some of my favorite songs of the year below (via Spotify).
Introducting … Electro Phi Beta from South Atlanta.
Janelle Monae is getting ready to head out with her Soros. She takes a pic of her ladies on her fancy Samsung watch which of course links to her phone, she jumps in the car (a Cadillac) and pops in this cool ‘Electric Lady’ 8-track and the next stop is the Sorority House. There’s a party going on (duh) and near the end of the video it hints at it being a bit of a Probate introducing new members into Electro Phi Beta. The albumni of the Sorority that were skyped in on the wall (so cute) were: T-Boz, Esperanza Spalding, Estelle, Monica, and Kimbra.
The party goes on as this fraternity rolls in and they get there dance on with this choreo that I keep playing back so I can learn it all. It gets later and later and Janelle breaks into rap and then the Neos. I assume they’re Neo’s as their faces are covered with cool futuristic (oversized) visors and their shirts are numbered. [For those who don’t know, Neos are the abbreviation of Neophytes which are new pledges in a sorority/fraternity.] Just when you think it’s over, here comes the cameo from the King of the South, T.I., with his baseball cap, ‘Blurred Lines’ two step, and a red solo cup. Lastly, shoot to the outside where the band comes and there’s Majorette Monae.
Janelle Monae is just so gorgeous in this video. She sticks to the black and white and adds a pop of color with her pink crop top. Her letterman jacket is super dope with the quilted sleeves, JM monogram, and Electric Lady embroidered on the back. Then as majorette she sticks to the same black and white outfit except with her purple hat & cape. Her HAIR, boy that fro.
I give this video a 5/5 for sure. I haven’t been rating videos lately, but this one sure deserves it. So much though and concept behind it. This has been on a favs list before, but here it is nearly a year later back on top of my rotation. Major props for this one.
This is a super DOPE video and too bad Solange isn’t it. She would’ve been great as the DJ at the party.
Check out the AMAZING video below:
I do not get a chance to post every single thing that happens in music during the week from live performances to SCANDAL so I’m starting a new series which I will post Saturdays titled, This Week In Music. It will not always be in chronological order, more so of importance, so bear with me.
Beyoncé performed her last show of the Mrs. Carter World Tour in Lisbon and she broke into tears after thanking the fans for all of their support. Check out the clip below:
As for live performances John Legend took to the stage to perform his hit, ‘All of Me’ on Jimmy Kimmel. While I am a fan of the song I am not a fan of the EDM version played on the airwaves during rush hour. A ballad never needs to be turned to techno. It takes away from the essence of it. Janelle Monae took to the stage of American Idol to perform What Is Love from the Rio 2 soundtrack which hit stores this past Tuesday (3.25). Rio 2 hits theaters April 11th. Check out the performances below:
YG’s debut,, hit #2 on the Billboard 200 and Shakira released her 10th self-titled studio album and is expected to debut on the Billboard 200. Who’s still holding the #1 spot? The Frozen Soundtrack. Stay tuned for my post on the movie in the next week.
I’ve also talked about 3 so far from Bruno Mars, Kesha, and Usher. Well Kesha is now not working with Zedd that was just a rumor, but I’m pretty sure she has a new album in the works. Lil Wayne’s Carter V still has no release date despite Drake saying at a show that it would be May 5th. Not sure what to expect from Weezy anymore, but I’m not excited about this album. Keyshia Cole will be releasing her 6th studio album titled, Point of No Return, and with her current situation she couldn’t have picked a better title. I’m not really feeling any of the music she’s released. I’m not a fan of ‘Rick James’. This will be her final album with Interscope.
As for celebrity scandal, I haven’t spoke much on the Chris Brown fiasco or Kanye West so here goes my first and only time speaking on both situations. Chris Brown is currently in jail for violating parole. I have heard rumors that he had sexual relations in rehab & was talking about guns which resulted in him getting kicked out. Due to him getting kicked out he was sent to jail until his D.C. case court date in late April. My personal opinion? This is all on Chris Brown.I can’t feel sorry for an almost 25 year old that doesn’t have it together and had the chance of making things right. He’s given chance after chance and he just seems to blow them. I’m so over it. As for Kanye West I’m over him as well ALTHOUGH he and Kim did look great on that Vogue cover despite what others think. Good luck to him and his 2 year probation and I hope he stays out of trouble. He’s not just living for himself anymore. He has a daughter. So to top it all off it’s ‘RUMORS’ that Kanye wants to call off the marriage between him and Kim because Kim had interactions with Chris Brown. MAJOR SIDE EYE to that foolery of a story. Regardless of whether it’s true or not whatever someone else did in their past before getting in a relationship with you is their business.
Welp that’s it for this edition of This Week In Music. Until next time…
In celebration of the Oscars, Janelle Monae takes a stab at Robert Palmer’s, ‘Simply Irresistible,’ which vibe and sound is right up her lane. She surely did not disappoint with her cover. The cover will be featured on the E!’s “Live From The Red Carpet” 2014 soundtrack.
I had so much fuuuun reimagining this song for E’s #Oscars coverage #robertpalmer #simplyirresistible JAM
Take a listen below:
The 45th Annual NAACP Image Awards aired last night (Feb. 22) on TVOne. The categories are: TV, recording, motion picture, writing, directing, and literature. Special awards include the Chairman’s Award, Hall of Fame Award, and the Vanguard Award.
Here are the winners from the music category:
Outstanding New Artist – K. Michelle
Outstanding Male Artist – John Legend
Outstanding Female Artist – Beyoncé
Outstanding Duo, Group or Collaboration – Robin Thicke (feat. Pharrell & T.I.): ‘Blurred Lines’
Outstanding Jazz Album – The Songs of Stevie Wonder: SFJAZZ Collective
Outstanding Gospel Album (Traditional / Contemporary – Best Days Deluxe Edition: Tamela Mann
Outstanding World Music Album – Natalie Cole en Español: Natalie Cole
Outstanding Music Video – Janelle Monae (feat. Erykah Badu): ‘Q.U.E.E.N.’
Outstanding Song – John Legend: ‘All of Me’
Outstanding Album – Love, Charlie: Charlie Wilson
Kevin Hart was voted Entertainer of the Year. Other nominees included Beyoncé, Dwayne Johnson, Idris Elba, Nicole Behaire, Oprah, Pharrell, Steve Harvey, and Tyler Perry.
Click here to see the full list of winners.
Pharrell x Nelly x Diddy x Busta Rhymes x Snoop Dogg
Trombone Shorty x Gary Clark Jr. x Janelle Monae x Earth, Wind, & Fire