Sunday, 24 May 2009

Oooh oooh oooh Ms Grace


Only just seeing this now - the inimitable Grace Jones being interviewed by Jonathan Ross for his show last Friday. Miss Thang is still as maddy maddy as ever. In the interview she discusses how red wine has contributed to her youthful looks, her somewhat lax approach to disciplining her son (which I thought was hilarious), and growing up in a strict Christian household in Jamaica. I can't even imagine Grace sitting on a church pew, bible in hand, singing Rock of Ages. This woman needs to write her autobiography, because no doubt God broke the mould when he made her. 

Monday, 11 May 2009

Discovering: Speech Debelle


Am I the only latecomer to this particular party?  A couple of days ago I had never heard of south London lyricist Speech Debelle, before reading Matilda's brilliantly written feature article in the Independent (well done girlie) as well as Malcolm Mackenzie's profile in this evening's edition of The London Paper. I've just checked out a couple of her tracks and all I can say is hmmm, interesting. Her style and vocal delivery is going to be a bit of a grower methinks (squeaky voice juxtaposed against sombre subject matters = a confused me), but she seems like a really engaging character so I am willing to be patient. Plus, she doesn't look or sound like any other emcee around right now, which warrants a multitude of gold stars for that alone.  See below and judge for yourselves. 

Acoustically Kelly

The UK's own adopted sister, Kelly Rowland, performed an acoustic set of her new single "When Love Takes Over" at Radio 1's Big Weekender Live Lounge a couple of days ago. For the most part I think it's quite a nice performance, although to coin a Randy Jackson phrase, " a lil' pitchy in parts".    Nonetheless I'm still rooting for Kells, and look forward to hearing her solo stuff in the not too distant future. She seems well suited to that whole laid-back, unplugged, intimate venue vibe. 


Sunday, 10 May 2009

The Rebirth of Mica

What becomes of an eighties soul diva, who was once considered the most talented vocalist this country has produced, before the proverbial rug was pulled from under her feet? Well in the case of Mica Paris, the answer was to try her hand at something new. The singer blazed into the charts in 1988 with the stellar album 'So Good’, before falling off the radar as she struggled to forge a solid musical identity. But she wasn’t quite ready to disappear altogether. Like most practical thinking sistas, our Meesh simply learned how to diversify. The south east London born and bred vocalist went on to host the successful 'Soul Solutions' series on BBC Radio Two, starred in a West End musical, and acted as a fashion/life guru in the popular prime time series What Not To Wear. (We won’t focus too much attention to the reality TV lows of Celeb Air or Strictly Come Dancing, nah, we‘ll just pretend they never happened). Now just over twenty years after her debut release, Mica is back with a new studio set called “Born Again". The album consists of 12, ultra polished, mature, easy listeners. Lead single “Baby Come Back” was produced by James Morrison and has that finger snapping, pop/rock ambience that mainstream audiences should latch onto. There are also a few surprise cover versions in the mix. Eric Benet’s “You’re The Only One” which is featured on his current set “Love & Life” gets the Paris voice over, which suits her trademark throaty vocal delivery to a tee. There’s also a remake of the Keyshia Cole track “I Remember", which if I’m being honest sounds a tad more believable from the current queen of ‘achy-breaky-heart’ ballads. Mica closes the set with a walk down memory lane courtesy of a subtle acoustic version of her hit single “My One Temptation”, as well as everybody’s favourite jazz standard - “Summertime". While not surprisingly “Born Again” doesn’t have a standout club banger such as the Omar produced “I Should Have Known Better"(1990), it’s good to have her back… it really is. And if you’ve yet to check out one of Mica’s live shows, I strongly recommend you do so. Visit www.micaparis.com for updates.






Saturday, 9 May 2009

Mo' Dizzee

Mr Rascal appeared on Jonathan Wossy last night, and I found the interview quick a chuckle. In case you missed it, check it out. 

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I am a thirty-something African Caribbean female from South East London. My blog will shine a light on Black British culture offering the best in entertainment, fashion, beauty, community, film & music, with the occasional personal musing thrown in from yours truly. Thank you for taking out the time to peek into the pages of my diary. Now grab a cup of cocoa, relax and enjoy.