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Nine
Director: Rob Marshall
Cast: Daniel Day-Lewis, Marion Cottilard, Penelope Cruz, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Kate Hudson, Nicole Kidman, Sophia Loren, Judi Dench, Fergie
Opening: 25 November 2009
Distributor: The Weinstein Company

Leave it to Daniel Day-Lewis to flummox fans. After winning the Oscar for his bravura performance as a wily turn of the century oil baron in There Will Be Blood, the unconventional actor has now jumped headlong into Rob Marshall’s big screen adaptation of the Broadway musical take on Fellini’s 8 1/2. That’s right, it’s a singing and dancing Day-Lewis who’ll be helping the Chicago helmer bring this baffling tuner into obvious Academy attention. And as the ladies in the fictional filmmaker Guido Contini’s life? Well, we have none other than Marion Cotillard, Nicole Kidman, Penelope Cruz, Judi Dench, Kate Hudson, Stacy Ferguson, and Sophia Loren. There’s over seven little gold statues among the cast alone. While some fear that Marshall is a one hit wonder (the Chicago follow-up, Memoirs of a Geisha, was less than successful at the box office), the talent involved should pull him through. Should.

Since first coming onto the R&B music scene in 2005, Trey Songz has created many hits. His first two albums, ‘I Gotta Make It” (2005) and ‘Trey Day’ (2007) had numerous singles such as “Girl Tonight”, “Just Gotta Make It”, “Last Time” and “Can’t Help But Wait”. The latter song gave Trey Songz a Grammy nomination for Best Male R&B Vocal Performance, and also affirmed that Trey Songz is one very promising R&B artist.

Now Ready is released, and is currently #2 on Amazon’s R&B Sales Charts, and #3 on iTunes Album Sales Charts. The album features the hit single “Successful”, featuring the rapper Drake, as well as his take on Mary J. Blige’s “Be Without You”, “One Love”. Trey Songz has also announced that he will be touring with the official BET Live! 106 & Park Tour along with R&B acts Mario, Day26 and Sean Garrett. Tour information can be obtained from his official website, but the dates are as follows:

September:
29th- Los Angeles, CA- House of Blues
30th- Anaheim, CA- House of Blues

October:
2nd- Las Vegas, NV- TBA
5th- Houston, TX- House of Blues
6th- Dallas, TX- House of Blues
8th- New Orleans, LA- House of Blues
9th- Atlanta, GA- Tabernacle
11th- Myrtle Beach, SC- TBA
12th- Charlotte, NC- Fillmore
13th- Baltimore, MD- TBA
15th- Kansas City, MO- TBD
16th- St. Louis, MO- The Pageant
18th- Detroit, MI- TBD
19th- Chicago, IL- House of Blues
20th- Cleveland, OH- House of Blues
21st- Indianapolis, IN- Egyptian Room at Murat
29th- Orlando, FL- TBD

November:
11th- Washington, DC- TBD
12th- Boston, MA- TBD

Jimi Tenor and Tony Allen
Inspiration Information Vol. 4
(Strut)
Releasing: 12 October

Eclectic Finnish musician Jimi Tenor teamed up with Afrobeat drumming legend Tony Allen to complete the fourth installment to Strut Records’ Inspiration Information series. The collaboration was recorded last November at Lovelite Studios in Berlin, and concluded this year with added sessions in Finland and Paris. In just over five days of jamming, the two successfully developed what has been described as a raw culmination of: full range Afrobeat repertoire, homemade instruments, vintage keyboards, dark humor, solid grooves, analog recording, and tight, “firing musicianship”. Members of Tenor’s Kabu Kabu band sat in on the sessions, in addition to Berlin-based guest MC Allonymous.

SONG LIST
01 Against the Wall feat. Allonymous
02 Sinuhe
03 Selfish Gene
04 Path to Wisdom Feat. Allonymous
05 Darker Side of Light
06 Mama England
07 Got My Egusi Fix
08 Cella’s Walk
09 Three Continents

 

Anything for straight hair. The first lady of the nation and the first lady of Hip-Hop all have straightened hair. “Just to get those kinks out.” Every girl in my family has gone through this, and I wonder why we really need to get our hair “done.” Rough. Abusive? What about charges? Haven’t we all already abandoned her, anyway. We’ve already told her that she ain’t no body unless your hair gets done! Why can’t we be nappy, kinky, happy some-bodies! People regularly talk as if nappy hair was the most negative thing on the planet. We won’t feel good about ourselves with this intact. We’ve long since abandoned this girl.

Nappy ass hair …  Broke ass kitchen

If we are to be honest about who we are, white America needs to know the pains MOST black girls go through in order to arrive at an acceptable—let alone respectable—place in this nation. Indeed, all our black icons straighten their hair. Most, like the mother in this video.

Self-hate amongst the formerly enslaved runs deep, and no amount of denial can mask black Americans’ attempts to not be so damn black. Consider this video circulating on YouTube each time you view Beyoncé on stage, hopping and hollering, gallivanting and hair shaking.

“Now, some online viewers were so disturbed by this that they have even started their own investigations, trying to trace the little girl and the woman so that they could file abuse charges with authorities, but this has prompted a great deal of debate online and a lot of soul-searching among African-Americans,” says NPR’s Tell Me More host Michel Martin, who (notoriously) wears her hair naturally nappy.

“Everybody wants hair that moves,” my mother says. Sure, whites tan, spending hours and major cash on bronzing tools to look like they are not white! Yet, the power equation is wholly different for the oppressed. Whites can flip on any channel, open any glossy, or page through any journal and see all sorts of images that show the good, the bad, the beautiful and the ugly.

“Nappy head girl,” the adult woman says, straddling the small child down on the floor, briskly combing out her hair. The clear statement here is that your ‘nappy ass hair’ is just plain WRONG. Another young girl can be heard commenting in the background. She is perhaps the videographer, capturing a ritual to which she is probably already numbed, as are many reading these words. Straightened nappy hair is the primary way that most are exposed to nappy hair.

My charcoal-skin little cousin has but few resources that remind her that she’s not just “dark, but beautiful”, as people have said, as if to excuse her for being so damn dark. Yet, none of her teachers in school remind her, none of the glossies we buy tell her, none of the channel surfing we do on cable, and none of the music on the radio convinces her that black is beautiful.

That’s why “I’m Black and I’m proud” is political. And for those few years when James Brown was between his conk, for the few years that the Godfather of Soul wore his own natural hair, he made it a statement. He picked his nappy hair out, releasing all but a few of those kinks, to form an afro—a hairstyle that requires much ado about nothing. (Though admittedly it was much, much more than the legacy of the nation’s first female and first Black millionaire had done.)

Madam C. J. Walker made millions helping black people get rid of those naps. Have we felt any freer? Years later, the wealthiest (self-made) woman in America is black. And no place does she go with her won natural hair. It’s damn straight. She’s got her own TV network, and save for her roles in The Color Purple and Beloved, her kinks are long gone.

Built to Spill
There Is No Enemy
(Warner Bros.)
Releasing: 6 October (US)

SONG LIST
01 Aisle 13
02 Hindsight
03 Nowhere Lullaby
04 Good Ol’ Boredom
05 Life’s a Dream
06 Oh Yeah
07 Pat
08 Done
09 Planting Seeds
10 Things Fall Apart
11 Tomorrow

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