Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Remembering Aaliyah - Brandon

Remembering Aaliyah

Exactly nine years ago, I was in Sunday School and my friend Reagan walked in and said, “The singer Aaliyah just died.” “Excuse me?” Much of the room quickly looked my way, knowing I was a fan. I asked if he was serious. I mean, there are celebrity death hoaxes all of the time, and I had just read that she had signed on to star in The Matrix sequels. Reagan said he heard it on the radio. She, along with several others in her entourage, died in a plane crash on the way home from a video shoot for “Rock The Boat”.

I remember this day distinctly because I always thought Aaliyah was such an underrated artist. She whispered and cooed when most other R&B starlets were trying (and failing) to wail or riff. Her voice was not necessarily weak. It was just softer than Beyonce’s and Monica’s. She knew exactly how to use it though and could have taught a lot of today’s R&B “singers” a lesson in knowing your gifts and using them to their fullest extents. She was fashion-forward, musically gifted, and seemed to be a genuinely sweet spirit.

I miss Aaliyah. No, I didn’t know her personally. I never met her…never got to even see her in concert. But she made music that affected me in some way. And for that, I am grateful. She is also a reminder to me to not take for granted the underrated artists that are grinding today. Brandy, Solange, Jazmine Sullivan, Sons of Sylvia, and countless others, I am looking at you all. Let’s enjoy the music while we still have it.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Colin Munroe is my new boyfriend - Tia

I stumbled onto Colin Munroe completely by accident. I was actually looking for a song called Cold Pillow that I'd heard on Sirius while driving around the A in my rental car. (Random Aside: 1. I'm probably going to have get Sirius. 2. I L-O-V-E the ATL. And I miss it. 3. I discovered that Cold Pillow is by Theophilus London and I can't decide if I like the song completely because at the end of it I feel like he may be calling some girl a b*tch and that is not the business.)

I am forever looking for music that moves me. A lot of what I've heard lately not only keeps me sedentary emotionally and physically but it also depresses me. It's almost as if the music industry as a collective got together and decided to impose a moratorium on creativity. Thus, far the injunction seems indefinite save for a few rebels who seem to give the finger to the industry by releasing music that makes you think and makes you feel good. Fight on, brothers and sisters...fight on.

You have to be something exceptional to draw me in with only the first few seconds of a song.
Dear Colin,
I find you to be exceptional.
This Chick

99% of the time I have to warm up to an artist. I'm not easy. So I when I found myself with my hands raised 20 seconds into Colin's song Cannonball I was surprised.

After 3 listens of the song it became a mad dash to find all things Colin. But I pulled up quick and let out a Scooby Doo "Huh??" when I found his cover of Prince's I Would Die 4 U. You don't mess with Prince. (I'm looking at you Trey Songz.) I was all prepared to write him a scathing email for ruining one of my favorite songs of all time. This was, of course prior to me actually listening to the song. However, after listening to it, I decided that not only is Colin Munroe some sort of musical genius, but also that he is my new musical boyfriend until further notice.

He has a cd out called Colin Munroe Is The Unsung Hero that dropped sometime in December 2008. Thus far, I've been unable to suppress my anger about JUST finding out about this. How did this slip through the cracks? Solider Boy (I refuse to spell it like he does. His ignorance is why we can't rise.) is allowed to make record after craptacular record yet artists with real talent, I mean GENUINE talent are relegated to obscure sites and their cds listed on eBay for $6. Is there no justice left in the music world?

I will be ordering 2 copies of the cd, one for me and one for mi padre. (He walked in whilst I was listening and said that he had to have the cd. Yes...Colin Munroe is THAT good.) And I will also be downloading. While it may be somewhat archaic in this day and age to prefer cds over digital downloads, I will gladly accept the moniker of "old school" in order to obtain what I'm convinced is better sound quality from a cd. However, I'm not oblivious to reality of mp3s and the fact that the more an artist is downloaded the more likely said artist's label is to support and push that artist. So I will contribute to Colin Munroe's cause all day, every day if it means that one fine day from now I will never have to hear about someone's "Pretty Boy" swag.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

And so it begins - Tia

Hi, my name is Tia and I'm a music junkie. 

My father bought me an orange and brown Fisher-Price record player when I was 6 years old and I never looked back. 

My first album was Phil Collins and Phillip Bailey's Easy Lover. My first cd was George Michael's Faith. My first concert was Michael Jackson's Thriller. Music has equaled happiness for me for as long as I can remember. 

Over the years, I've tried to start a music blog several times. But procrastination and real responsibilities always seemed to get in the way. However, there comes a time when you have to do what you love and love what you do. I love music. I love writing. And I love people who love music. So that's what this blog is for: the music junkie, the album collector, the wanna-be Rolling Stone writer. This is your sanctuary. This is your spot. We welcome you with open arms.