Friday, May 8, 2009

I'm Somebody's Baby

Hello people! Fo shame, fo shame I been away from the game. It's not been wasted time I'll tell you that. I've been working on revising my short story collection (Thanks A.S.K.) and dealing with everything else that stays and has appeared on my virtual plate of life's activities. I've got to do better. Honestly, since I've been tweeting on Twitter (follow me I've been even more lax on the blog. One day you won't know what to do when I start posting (almost) daily.

Wednesday I took my kid to a show with me. Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings, one of my favorites. Yes, she used my fake writer juice to sneak behind stage, but I didn't stop her. I'm glad I didn't because she made it and got to meet the band. We even took pictures after the show with Ms. Jones herself. She was so short and sweet. Like an Aunt with talent. Ms. Jones (I feel like I have to show her that r-e-s-p-e-c-t by calling her Ms. Jones) was a 4"11 ball of energy that could sing and dance her ass off. She kept it up for two hours and didn't give that stage or audience any mercy. Whoever the unnamed fool she talked about that rejected her from a label deal all those years ago probably feels like a real fool right about now. I got my CD signed (real fannish right?) and copped this really cool tee shirt too. What more could I ask for on a Wednesday evening? Check out my review of the show that ran today in the Philadelphia Inquirer.

I couldn't find a video for one of my favorite Sharon Jones songs, "Nobody's Baby", so this live concert footage of it will have to do.

100 Days, 100 Nights is a close second on my favorites list.

Did I mention I reviewed the JHud (that's Jennifer Hudson in music talk) & Robin Thicke show too? Yup. Sure did. Check that out here.

I'm still working on that HUGE piece for the Philadelphia City Paper. I think I'm going to have to take #1 Muse with me for security while I do more research over the next few days. Yeah. It's that serious.

Happy Mothers Day in advance. I'm doing Race for the Cure this year with Mom and Daughter and I'm too excited. This will be our 17th year doing the race.

Do you or your family have any Mother's Day traditions? I'd love to hear from YOU readers.

Monday, March 23, 2009

I know, I know

I'm so late. I've been sick for a few days but I'm on the healing comeback train, so a new post will appear soon. In the meantime, here is my review of the Raphael Saadiq concert that ran today in the Philadelphia Inquirer. I went to the show with a 102.1 temperature hopped up on antibiotics. Crazy? Maybe a little, but I call it dedication. Next up? Something very interesting. I guess you'll have to keep coming back to find out what it is huh?

Did you know this video was directed by Lisa Bonet?

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Ebert Doesn't Live Here

I took a few days off last week to visit my mother and we went to see "The Reader". By now my fellow movie heads will know that six-time Oscar nominee Kate Winslet won the best actress statue a few week ago for her role in the movie. Initially, I wasn't that excited about seeing another movie that was Holocaust related. I had already seen 'Schindler's List' and 'The Diary of Anne Frank'. The Holocaust was horrible, no doubt about it. I changed my mind about seeing it so after one star shaped hole punch on her frequent movie watcher card, we sat in plush stadium seating and watched Kate do her thing.

I won't give the plot away in case you decide to see it for yourself. I'd have to agree with the academy that Ms. Winslet did a great job. The movie was Holocaust related, but the horror of the event wasn't so in your face. You actually had a chance to focus on the well developed storyline and catch another good performance by the always stellar Ralph Fiennes.

After the movie, I wondered if aging in a movie equals automatic Oscar nomination? (Brad and Taraji anyone?) There's something about aging on screen and maintaining an accent for hours that just reels voters in. Meryl Streep knows what I'm talking about. Kate Winslet aged, maintained an accent, and turned in a performance that just couldn't be ignored. Triple threat. Kudos to Kate.

I did want to catch Milk and Doubt, but they will both be on DVD soon enough. Since I enjoyed City of God so much, its only logical for my movie loving mind to see 'Gomorrah' next. It's been lauded for being the "thinking persons gangsta movie". Of course I'll provide a detailed review later on. In the meantime, check out the trailors for 'The Reader' and 'Gomorrah' and tell me what you think. Seem interesting?

What's next on your movie list? TLA wants to know...

Casual Style Fashionista Dreams

I love watching the show 'What Not To Wear'. Stacey and Clinton perform magic on people. They take the drab and unstylish, transforming them into people who appear as if they were fabulous all the while. The only sad part about the show is that someone has to nominate you. That means someone in your circle thinks you are a clothing dullard. Ouch.

The nominee is usually full of emotion after getting over the initial shock of realizing that their style game is seriously lacking. After Stacey and Clinton raid your closet its off to NY for a style intervention, minus the plush hotel room with Candy waiting to whisk you off to rehab for the formerly chic. The beginning of this overhaul begins after you arrive at the studio. You are allowed to perform a few final spins of shame, modeling your sad threads in a 360 degree mirror for the world to see before they literally trash your clothes. Like in the trash can trashed. Sometimes I think they should spray bleach on them because people do dig things out and wear them on shopping day, (attachment disorder?)but I digress...

They send you out to shop in New York with the none too subtle product placed "Visa Check Card" for $5,000 and tips on what to look for when shopping. Afterwards, Nick and Carmindy hook your do and face up and its off to model the new you for Stacey and Clinton. They gush over you through three outfit changes and send you home to make your fashionable debut for the friends and loved ones that nominated you in the first place.

Sometimes while watching the show I imagine myself entering the party room, hearing the roar of a crowd so pleased to witness my unconscious hidden beauty being finally revealed. I'd smile, wave and blow air kisses to everyone. Of course someone would yell, "Spin around!" and I would twirl and think "In your face!" on the first spin and "Thanks for caring" on the second. Style is love, right?

My fashion game is definitely lacking. I'm such a slave for comfort many times I'm willing to forgo pants for jeans, sneakers for shoes. I'm a fast mover that usually always feel the need to be prepared to move fast, whatever the reason. A sudden downpour could occur. Who wants to get wet? Being able to move from one place to another with the wanna be speed of Jackie Joyner-Kersee is important. I've looked at people who wear heels on the regular and think, "I'd be past them so fast if I took off running right now. Thank you trusty sneakers." Even movies are smart enough to know that when the running high-heeled woman really wants to run, the shoes come off. You think Lola would have gotten far in Manolo's? Probably not.

I've always been a casual girl with dreams of super-flyness. I've already told my most stylish cousin Holly that when my big check arrives, I'll definitely hire her (per diem of course) to be my fashion go to guide. She even gives style counseling on the phone when I'm in one of my indecisive binds. A quick cell phone picture snapped is returned with a text of yea or nay, complete with suggestions. (Technology is magic I tell ya.) She helps me create temporary fashion illusions and choose clothes that will add to my small collection of grab and go outfits.

I must admit, I'm getting better with choosing clothes. I clean up nicely. For the most part, I still tend to shop on the need to have basis, but when I do, I think I'm making better, bolder choices. Who knows, one day I might be that fierce chick on the street with a style game that can't be beat.

What are you dear reader? Are you the stylist or the stylee? Do you phone in fashion 911's on the regular? Where are you on the fashion meter?

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Movie Snob Anonymous

I was reading one of my new favorite blogs by Aliya King yesterday about the new Tyler Perry movie "Madea Goes to Jail". I cringed when I read it (ironically while watching "A Family That Preys") because I knew I was going to see it today. My other gig includes taking impressionable young women out to a movie that's "safe" to see from time to time. They begged to see Madea, and against my better movie judgement, today I found myself standing in a curling line of fans waiting for tickets.

I should have known I was going to be in the company of serious TP fans based on snippets of conversation I overheard standing in line. The five year old sporting fresh Tims while sucking his pacifier was nothing compared to the adult TP fans in line.

"You know I heard he is a cross dresser and invented Madea from that."

"Why Madea breast always flying around?"

"Ooh I hope Mr. Brown is in this one. He is so funny." (He is funny--for about 2 minutes)

"I saw the bootleg on 52nd Street yesterday, but I decided to give a nigga my money today and take my son out." (son with pacifier)

Once the lights went down I tried to psych myself up. Get your mind right girl. You can do this. It will be over in two hours and you can get on with your life.

Sapphire's book turned movie "Push" was a good trailer. Oh, Vin Diesel is still fast and furious? The recession is touching everyone I see. Something about spirits living in a house with a family people who find out evil wants to claim one of them but they don't move out. Riiiiiiight.

Did this lady just give her daughter a peanut butter and jelly sandwich and an extra large HUG juice out of her purse? Yup.

The movie starts.

Fast forward one hour and forty three minutes.

The movie ends.

You already know how it went without seeing a thing. Madea cuts up, problems were presented, Madea cuts up, subliminal sermon mid way through, errors of ones ways are revealed, lost love gets found, evil person gets theirs, Madea cuts up one last time, the end. Oh yeah, and Rudy Huxtable is a heroin addicted prostitute. How's that for evil subplot?
If I could say anything to TP, I'd have only five words to say. Take it to another level.

I don't know, maybe I'm a movie snob. I like my films indy and my dialogue crisp. I actually don't mind thinking when I watch a movie. I like intelligent humor too. A harsh critic if you will. I pre-screen most movies without seeing a trailer. Extensive research on films is done prior to release. Any Sundance/Tribeca Film Festival/Cannes buzz? Who's in it? What's it about? Who wrote it? Directed & Written by? All these elements need to combine perfectly for me to plop down my frequent movie club card and ticket money.

What type of movie goer are you? Speak your mind...

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Thank You Television

Last week I went to a taping in New York that VH1's Soul Stage series was having for India.Arie. I did a review of the show here, but while standing in line for two hours waiting to get in, my mind took a few laps on the meaningless deep end. Sometimes to avoid getting bored (annoyed?) when I'm waiting on line, my mind takes a trip, temporarily.

I admit that I'd always suspected casting agencies filled audiences at these types of shows with people who fit a particular demographic that record labels, sponsors, and those who don't take too kindly to seeing any ugmos* on the telly will find appealing. Of course these groups also include the perfect shades of an ever growing minority spectrum, with a few of the majority mixed in for good measure.

My guests and I arrived on time for the 6:15 call time. When we got there a smiling face with a clipboard greeted me at the door. He asked my name, gave us the quick up and down, (eyes only, still smiling) and pointed us toward the line. We were posted mid way in the line and waited for it to start moving. After an hour, we seemed to be on our way. Au contraire. People who were once behind us suddenly disappeared. People who were just arriving, moved right through. As more folks with clipboards appeared, the line kept creeping forward. There seemed to be a formula to moving forward. A clipboard approaches. Quick conversation. Disappear. Hmmm.

Once we finally got into our seats, my suspicions were confirmed. The Beautiful Ones were seated in front of the stage. You know, that section where the camera would skim enthusiastic, audience pleasing faces. My mind did a Psych and took me back to some of the faces I'd scanned in line. Was that the cute natural haired couple I'd seen who were all on their boo lovin' vibe in line? Yup. I see you trendy Asian punk rocky looking pair with the untamed tresses in the fourth row. Center. The Midnight Oil looking bald white guy? Check. The woman with the mushroom hair do, fur jacket, who went #2 and tried to dip out the ladies room without eye contact? First row. Behind the camera. Sorry.
Once the camera's started rolling, and after our applause was taped a few times, looks didn't really matter much. The Beautiful One's did not disappoint. The represented as hard as the rest of the crowd, if not more. After all, viewers deserve to see enthusiastic, non-stereotypical attractive visuals paired with their entertainment, right? Any other way wouldn't be Obama. Thank you television.

By the way, India was fantastic. Something about her voice makes me think about hot biscuits. Hot biscuits with butter that's been sitting out, melting so perfectly, delicious when digested. She is NOT her hair, she is the soul that lives within.

*ugmo (ug-moe) An unattractive male or female.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

I've Been Twittered

I finally decided to get on Twitter. You'll be able to get into my world better, stronger, faster. If you want to find me on it, search me out--tlawrites. If you are already on, follow me and I'll follow you too.

I caught "The Wrestler" over the weekend. It was good. Sad, but good. Mickey Rourke was all over that role. It was life kinda sorta--switch out wrestling for acting.

Thursday I'll be going to NYC for a taping fof VH1's Soul Series with India Arie. Should be good. Her new disc drops in two weeks. Or a week? I'm sure I'll Twit from there.

Anyone else see this today?