She Is Focused

June 30, 2009

Music Played Yet No Royalties Earned

Filed under: BBC News,Chat 'bout — Felicia @ 4:49 pm

BBC News Story

In which countries – apart from the United States – do terrestrial radio stations NOT pay performers for their songs?

 Iran, China, North Korea and Rwanda. Duke

Artists and their record labels are calling on members of Congress to bring the US into line with the rest of the world – and with satellite, internet and cable radio stations – by passing the Performance Rights Act. They say it is a question of fair play for air play. It will not just be the big names that would benefit, they maintain, but emerging artists too, and all the backing singers and session players who work together to shape the sound you hear.

 ‘We sang it’

I caught up with an artist who has been petitioning for payment for decades. Abdul “Duke” Fakir is the sole surviving member of the Motown group, the Four Tops. He could not possibly count the number of times hits he sang on – like Reach Out, I’ll Be There or Baby, I Need Your Loving – have been played on the radio.

But he says it was the writers who got to count the cheques coming in. “We sang it. We made it come alive. Don’t we get paid for something? “Next, I met American singer songwriter Crystal Waters, in her home recording studio in Maryland. She made the big time with the pop-dance hit Gypsy Woman (She’s Homeless) 18 years ago.  Waters (more…)

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June 29, 2009

Joe Jackson Interview

Filed under: Chat 'bout,Interviews — Felicia @ 3:49 pm

This interview was done by CNN correspondent Don Lemmon. Mr. Jackson is an older man, however this interview is extremely questionable and gets the side-eye from me:

What’s your opinion? Follow me on Twitter at www.twitter.com/SheIsFocused

June 25, 2009

Forever the King of Pop: Michael Jackson, 1958 – 2009

Filed under: Flashback — Felicia @ 11:01 pm

It is ridiculously hard to find the words to express how much of an icon this world has lost. A man who has been such a great contributor of pop music from his childhood; a childhood he didn’t even get a moment to enjoy because he was forced and encouraged to work hard to reach and remain at the top. A man who has given his all to put on a great show; a man who has been such an inspiration to today’s pop idols. Michael Jackson has truly kept us entertained until the very end. At 50 years young, the world has lost the ultimate entertainer, idol, icon, legend. The king of pop title will forever and always belong to Michael.

With a career which spans from his childhood performing with the Jackson 5 which was comprised of his four older brothers, from a very young age he had the world at attention. He didn’t stop there as he was thrust into what would be a continuous and lengthy career as a worldwide pop icon. Michael could not go anywhere and be unrecognizable. He didn’t even have to speak a word; when he stepped on stage and his presence was shown, people would faint at the mere sight of him. Both women and men would lose their minds once they even got a glance of him.

Much is to be said about his legal woes whether we choose to believe them or not. But that does not negate his talent. Its so hard to continue writing at this moment. Although I wasn’t around during his years as a member of the Jackson 5, for as long as I could remember Michael’s music has always been played in our household. When the thought of a legendary pop icon comes to mind, Michael is always rightfully included in that category. 

Its hard to include in this post my favorite Michael Jackson records because there are far too many. I will add one of my favorite up-tempo records, “Wanna Be Starting Something”, and say this: Michael, you will be missed, you will always be loved and you will forever in my eyes be the King of Pop.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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“Underneath It All”

Filed under: Flashback — Felicia @ 10:29 am

Song: “Underneath It All” No Doubt

Album: Rock Steady, 2001

Label: Interscope

Everyone’s favorite Ska and New Wave band No Doubt had the 90’s in the palms of their hands. The band consisting of Eric Stefani, Tony Kanal, Tom Dumont, Adrian Young and leading lady Gwen Stefani was signed in 1991 by Interscope Records (original member John Spence passed away and Gwen’s brother Eric left the group soon after their first release).

Shortly after the release of their first album Interscope dropped the band due to their debut album’s poor sales. This didn’t stop the show for the young group as they continued recording through 1994. The following year Interscope picked them up once again and in 1996 their album, Tragic Kingdom shot to the top of the charts with the help of its lead single Just A Girl. Rock Steady

“Underneath It All” from their Rock Steady album is one of my favorite records from the group. Here’s a live performance:

June 23, 2009

Ciara’s “Work”

Filed under: New Music — Felicia @ 8:22 pm

Ciara on the setBecause I think this song (minus Missy) and video is ridiculously hot, check out Ci Ci’s new video for “Work”. By far the hottest record on her album. Perhaps if this song was released first (minus Missy) there would have been more units sold?

Editor’s note: I know both women are tired of the comparisons, but if Ciara and Beyonce had a dance off, Ci Ci would smash Bey. I dare anyone to disagree!

June Album Releases (pt. 2) – Dead Prez, Ginuwine & Al B. Sure!

Filed under: New Music — Felicia @ 4:27 pm

Dead Prez releases Pulse Of The People on Invasion Group Dead Prez

With the help of DJ Green Lantern Dead Prez drops their 4th release Pulse Of The People on the Invasion Group label today. The politically inspired duo who came together at Florida A&M University met up with Green Lantern recently and decided it was time to collaborate and release a mixtape. The group plans to release a full length album later on this year titled, Information Age.

Ginuwine releases A Man’s Thoughts on Notifi/Asylum/Waner Brothers Ginuwine

It’s been a while since we’ve heard from the original sexy R&B male crooner Ginuwine. His absence has generated many replica R&B male singers over the years; some just has successful and talented. This year marks his best album to date, 100% Ginuwine ‘s 10 year anniversary. His single, “Last Chance” has been getting a lot of burn on the airwaves. Hopefully this new LP brings things back to the basics as his last forgettable 2005 album promised.

Al B. Sure!Al B. Sure! releases Honey I’m Home on Hidden Beach

Does anyone remember this guy? His last album, Sexy Versus was released more than 17 years ago.  Al B’s single “Nite And Day” also released almost a couple decades ago has been a smash hit and can still be heard on late night R&B stations, but I honestly don’t really have too much to say about the guy. He’s been pretty much absent ever since on the music scene (and in other areas of his person life). But that doesn’t dismiss the fact that he was once a pretty stellar artist. This album is worth a listen.

June 22, 2009

Behind The Scenes: The Brooklyn Hip-Hop Festival

Filed under: Behind The Scenes,Chat 'bout — Felicia @ 2:56 pm

BHHFThis past weekend was the 5th Annual Brooklyn Hip-Hop Festival which took place at the Empire Fulton Ferry State Park in Dumbo, Brooklyn. The event celebrates Hip-Hop culture through performance and family togetherness and once again has drawn a large audience of spectators for Saturday afternoon’s performances. Some of the artists headlining were Pharoahe Monch, Styles P, Dead Prez, Buckshot, Brand Nubian, Smif-N-Wesson and lots of others. My review on the performances will be posted later.

I enjoyed myself at the show as I did last year, except this year the weather was horrible. The concert portion of the day is usually held out in the open field under the Manhattan Bridge, but because of the rainy weather there was a tent set up so the artists can perform comfortable. A lot of those in the crowd stood huddled under the large tent. I opted to keep my space and umbrella backstage. I was able to hear the performances just as well. I also got a chance to see some of the performers before they got on the stage.

Brand NubianOne of the first people I saw right after their performance was Grand Puba of Brand Nubian. He’s a very jolly guy just like he’s always been. It’s really cool to see rappers of yesterday age yet still have a love for the art. A lot of times I find myself staring at these artists from a distance, not because I’m star struck, but because I like to get a quick glimpse of their mannerisms and their swagger (I told myself I would never use that word on my site, but it was fitting). (more…)

June 19, 2009

Who Do You Love

Filed under: Flashback — Felicia @ 1:12 pm

Song: “Who Do You Love” Bernard Wright

Album: Mr. Wright, 1985

Label: Manhattan, EMI

As a signee of GRP in 1981, Bernard Wright got his first taste of the music industry when he toured with drummer Lenny White. His first album, Nard, was released that same year but didn’t receive much praise. He went on to release three additional albums. None of his albums seemed to be top sellers, but Bernard was such an extraordinary writer. His most popular song, “Who Do You Love” was most famously and recently sampled by LL Cool J.  

Check the video below. It was actually a pretty cool video at the time.

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