Category: music

concha buika

#MusicMondays | “You Get Me” by Buika x Seal

The idea is to wind down 2016 amidst gratitude, reflection, goal-setting, and looooooooove! So to celebrate the first Monday on the last day of 2016, I’ve discovered and wanted to share the beautiful, rare gem of a voice – Buika – an Equatoguinean Spanish singer. What I love most about the song, beyond the lyrics of the chorus (“you get me”…how wonderful is that to be able to confidently say to someone…anyone!), are Seal and Buika’s voices. Seal has always been a soaring, gritty singer that I love. When Buika comes in with a voice that so similarly matches his in intense vibrancy ….it’s just altogether lovely.

Suddenly the walls are coming down
I won’t be the same when I come around
Suddenly I am understood
It’s all over now

You get me…

 

#MusicMondays | “Y’all Feel That?” by BamaLoveSoul

Y’all know about @BamaLoveSoul? No? Well, lemme put you on. Once upon a time, way back in my college years, I stumbled on BamaLoveSoul. For the life of me, I cannot remember how I found their work. They describe themselves as a movement to change the narrative and public perception of what Alabama music is like. In fact, the “website has become to “Go To Spot” for exposure to new and alternative music, as well as old tunes that you may have missed“. My college days were spent discovering hip hop, American blackness, Def Poetry Jam, the Black Panthers, and womanism. Perhaps then, this is not entirely a stretch that an Alabama movement found me in the Hecht dorms of Miami’s most beautiful college campus. Nevertheless, I have had this Badu Remix playlist saved as a bookmark for at least an entire decade (omg!). I regret nothing. The entire playlist has held up beautifully and it’s about to become my #Summer16 soul soundtrack!

Y’all, go through your internet bookmarks every few years. The tucked away memories that may have evolved to become part of your identity might just emerge to remind you of specific sensibilities you once held. Worth remembering. Dude, you’re welcome.

Track list:
JBmBeatz – Texas Tea (The Badu Medley)
Beat Attic – Incense & Brandy
School of Rock – Apple Tree
Soldier (simon S Remix)
Soldier (Gudina’s I Can’t Believe It’s NOt BUtter Flip)
Love of My Life (Jack Smith Remix)
Bag Lady (Salah Ananse Transatlantic Soul Mix)
Southern Girl (Opolopo remix)
Southern Girl (Moonshine Remix)
oriJanus – 21 Feet Tall
The Light (Cornbread Remix)
Real Thing (Marvel Remix)
Warren Xclnce x Ohforeal! – Tmrrw x Ystrdy
Robert Glasper – Afro Blue (AnuTheGIANT Remix) feat Erykah Badu
Robert Glasper – Afro Blue (9th Wonder’s Blue Light Basement Remix) feat Phonte
Honey (Souled Remix)
Cleva (Captain Planet Remix)
I Want Moombah (J Boogie 12″ Edit)
Sometimes (Manmademusic More ooft Edit)
Drama (Manuel Riccardi Deep mix)
Window Seat (Boddhi Satva Ancestral Soul Remix)
In LOve With U (Steva’s Basement Mix)
Bump (Soul1LDN Classic Remix)
Next Lifetime (Deluxepusher Dub)
Tyrone (Ain’t My Style) (The Main Ingredient Remix)
Bjork vs Badu – Come to Me / Bag Lady
Bare Beats + Stray Dog – Kiss Me On My Neck
On & On (Sid Mercutio Cover)
Jchu – No Love
Yessiree!
lambada kaoma
I need to get to Brasil!


This song reminds me of a Lagos I barely remember.

I was likely four or five when my family moved back to Nigeria for a short stint between my parents’ international assignments. My memories are scattered from that time, but of all the feelings and sounds and smells, this song etched into the back of my mind.

The song reminds me of a sand-smelling Lagos, of a large apartment complex where roosters and the neighborhood mosque got you up in the morning, of chasing fireflies and long walks to fetch water. The song reminds me of a neighborhood boy who told me I’m too direct and how, even then, I knew that was a good thing. The song reminds me of block parties and drinking Fanta after Sprite after Fanta from the glass bottle, and walking nervously up the spiraled, windy, outdoor staircase leading to each families’ apartment home. This song reminds me of how much I wanted a relaxer, after having seen an older cousin, my namesake, change her tight curls to loose, wispy hair overnight. This song reminds me of harmattan sunrises. My young eyes gazed into the haze, wondering whether this was the signal my Sunday school teacher talked about when he shouted at us about the end of days.

Lagos was big and brusque, and this song would blare from passing taxi cabs and transistor radios – my four (or five) year old musical backdrop.

So re-connection to this song (thanks Facebook!) is my week’s pick-me-up.

mother may i ceelo green

#MusicMonday | Mother, May I by CeeLo Green

No one is watching Grey’s Anatomy anymore. It’s the one Shondaland project that refuses to actually agree to be laid to rest. Everyone has died or left (Yaaaaang!) and been replaced. The longevity of Grey’s is astronomically confusing. However, as a true textbook late adopter, I hopped on the train mad late and now have refused to disembark. I’m still watching this show. Dude. I’m still watching Grey’s flipping Anatomy; it’s so silly, yet here I am…
One thing I’ll say is particularly signature about Shonda’s work is her use of dope soundtracks. So Grey’s Anatomy brought me this gem. I’ve loved CeeLo’s work for a while. He, as a man, is ughhhhh so problematic! So much so, I intentionally didn’t listen to his last few albums. Nevertheless, here I am. It’s really been hard to love celebrities these days; thanks Obama.

Now, if you haven’t picked up on my musical taste by now, I’ll spell it out: I love funky-fresh sounds, with great vocals, stupid-good lyrics and/or an element of haunting. I appreciate being haunted by music. I want music to crawl right up under my skin and breed there, echoing through my bones.

 

So, here you go: CeeLo Green. Happy Monday yall!

Hamdulillah Narcicyst

#MusicMondays | Hamdulillah by The Narcicyst ft Shadia Mansour

I love when certain songs crop up and follow you over the years. It’s the perfect definition of timelessness. Every few years, someone posts this song on social media, or it pops up when I listen to a playlist I had created years ago. Then I play the song over and over – again and again.

Apart from Shadia’s hauntingly arresting voice, I’m struck by the words she sings. I don’t understand Arabic (not yet!), so enter Rap Genius. According to the artist, this whole song is an ode to his people and the politics of humanity specific to that region of the world. I can relate to the frustration in loving the land of your ancestry, your heritage and watching it torn up by civil, international, political and humanitarian unrest and still yet, seeing the tortured beauty therein: “If I go back to Basrah will it ever receive me?“.

Chorus:

Hamdulillah il ahbabina illy th’aloolna
Far’ol kalam illali ma yasma-oona
Fi ajlil insan-yaaaa
Li ajlika ya Basra
Definition:
Thank God for all the loved ones we still have around
For these words to those who don’t hear us/listen to us
In the name/for the sake of Humanity
In the name/for the sake of Basra/Gaza

The power in representation here also matters. Arab-speaking peoples and Muslims (they are not the same!) come in similar strand of physical diversity any other group.

We just peoples.