Per Mr. Ebert's recommendation, check out this awesome scene between Henry Fonda and the amazing Barbara Stanwyck...hot like pepper and hilarious, to boot! ;-)
Wednesday, March 31, 2010
Wednesday, March 24, 2010
Being a resident of such a diverse city like NYC, I am often stopped on the street by people of various ethnic backgrounds and nationalities who claim that I remind them of home. Where is home? As long as they are brown, it doesn't really matter. I am sized up by folks from Trinidad, South Africa...even southern India. It all depends on how I am wearing my hair that day (see photos)! Honestly, I am flattered when this happens to me. I like to think of myself as a world citizen so, if a bunch of different peeps think we are some kin...I AM ALL FOR IT!
I am sure you are asking yourself, "where is all this coming from?" Well, today I had another one of these moments. A couple approached me though they did not come out and say, "you're like home." Still, they scanned the drugstore we were in for a person that looked familiar, sized me up and then asked a sizable question in French; a french dialect that sounded West African and beautiful to me. I looked at the woman puzzled. "Do you speak French?" she said in her best English. "NO...well...un peu," I said in my twelve year old voice. "D'accord"...my little was obviously good enough for her to launch into asking me another very detailed question in French! But here's the funny part...I knew exactly what she was saying: "Do you know if they sell IMAN cosmetics here?" Unfortunately, I could not say anything comprehensible back to her. Instead,I started into the embarrassing pantomiming that New Yorkers tend to do when trying to direct an international guest towards the right direction. I almost panicked until her husband came over to me and asked in English, "Where can she get it?" with a big ole smile! I told him. They both thanked me and gave me the warmest smile...like we were family. I felt better and kind of fell in love with them for a second. I can be super sentimental at times. Still, I had failed to use the French that I have been studying and practicing off and on for the past couple of years. The VERY language that I hope to use in my research on women of the African Diaspora and how they communicate in beauty salons! HELLO...MCFLY!
Though I played the fool yet again, I learned three important lessons today:
1. I NEED TO PRACTICE MY FRENCH EVERYDAY OR I WILL TURN INTO A BABBLING IDIOT LIKE I DID TODAY AND ON MY LAST TRIP TO THE SOUTH OF FRANCE.
2. I SHOULD NOT ABANDON THE RESEARCH PROJECT THAT I HAVE BEEN WANTING TO DO ON DIASPORIC SUBJECTIVITIES AND THE BEAUTY INDUSTRY.
3. BE YE ALSO READY!
And that is how you learn from your failures folks! That is all. ;-)
Wednesday, March 17, 2010
I would be lying if I told you Janet Jackson was not a huge influence on me as a young performer. In fact, she was very much the prototype for a triple threat(behind Ms. Debbie Allen of course...more on her later) when I was a teenager. However, as I got older and became more "refined", I began downplaying the impact she had on me. Besides, she was "just" a pop icon and I had begun discovering greats like Sarah, Ella and Billie as a singer and Babs, Chita and Patti LuPone as a triple threat performer. Still, looking back I remember those days in the mirror "trying" to do all of Tina's choreography (especially the one in the video above! LOL!); not so much! Ironically, as a member of Pittsburgh Civic Light Opera's Mini-Stars, "Rhythm Nation" was one of my biggest solos; which gave me a chance to perform her dope choreography on a regular basis in front of people other than my Cabbge Patch doll! Although I was merely fifteen years old at the time, this solo is still a career highlight for me.
I could really go on and on about all of my JJ moments: the concerts, the DVDs, the cassettes then CDs...the first time I heard "That's the Way Love Goes" while sitting in the beauty salon getting my hair done for my senior prom! The bottom line is this: Ms. Janet is an icon who is very much her brother's sister...she has more than proven herself worthy of her last name...she can go toe to toe with the best of them because she resides among them in the Pantheon of American Performing Artists...I've seen her in concert...the woman is no joke....and she was Penny for goodness sake!
Unfortunately, as our pop icons get older they are forced to make decisions about their career that can either make or break them. Ms. Jackson has been no exception as she too has struggled to make the adjustment like so many of her predecessors and contemporaries. How do you continue to portray powerful and sexy at 40ish in a business that glorifies 20ishness? Who knows...no matter what...we can't deny the amazing body of work Janet has already given us. Though she continues to make the transition into her full womanly awesomeness, I am sure she has got decades worth of greatness still in her to give. I can't wait to see what she does next besides "Why Did I Get Married Too!" I aint hatin...I'ma be up in that show...#imjustsayin
Monday, March 15, 2010
Thursday, March 11, 2010
Friday, March 5, 2010
Yesterday I made an innocent trip to Rickys NYC for some Hair Rules Kinky Curling Cream and Rosebud Lip Salve and just happened upon this fab facial product. I've only used it once but honey it's already everything to me! And to top it all off I got it for 50% off...$9.99...now that will have a girl Beauty Jonezin' fo' sho! It smells delish...all natural...my face is glowing but not greasy...no reapplication necessary and its nearly 7PM...in a word, it is pure AWESOMENESS.
Try it...K? Until next time...stay beautiful on your own terms...;-)
Thursday, March 4, 2010
A few years ago I stumbled upon the treasure that is Lorez Alexandria. Her career was relatively short lived compared to her contemporaries in jazz vocals but her impact is yet strong...at least on me. My views on music and jazz and what it means to be a woman in music have not been the same since finding this gem. I am a different woman and a different kind of singer as a result. Enjoy...
For more information, go to: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lorez_Alexandria