RIP Little Richard, Andre Harrell & Betty Wright

So, let’s just skip the formalities and get straight to the point, son. On the real, when we’re talking about Little Richard, Betty Wright and Andre Harrell, we’re talking about pioneers, man. I mean, between the three of them, damn near every genre of music was touched, fam. All in all, this past weekend was SUPER trash, bruh. Needless to say, rest in peace to all of these legends.

Ok, for those who missed it, Richard, Wright and Harrell all passed away over the weekend. Now, in the cases of Richard and Wright, both singers unfortunately died from cancer. On the other hand, we’re still not sure about what claimed the life of Harrell. According to his ex-wife, Harrell had heart problems for years. So, logic would dictate that this may have been a catalyst for his demise. Regardless, all of this news is incredibly sad, son. Like, it’s hard to put into words how influential all of them were on music.

First, let’s talk about Little Richard. Look, it’s easy for people to think about “Tutti Frutti” and “Long Tall Sally” when discussing his legacy. However, his shadow looms LARGE over the game, man. Real talk, when we’re talking about Little Richard, we’re talking about one of the main building blocks of Rock and Roll. From the intensity of his songs to his stage presence to his outfits, COUNTLESS artists took inspiration from Richard. On top of that, he gave a lot of subsequent legends their starts. Shit, from James Brown to Ray Charles to Jimi Hendrix to The Beatles to The Rolling Stones, scores of artists owe a portion of their success to Little Richard. Sadly, I don’t think he really got all of his flowers while he was alive, fam.

Next, let’s talk about Betty Wright. Now, outside of having one of the strongest voices ever, she was also one of the most sampled artists ever. From Beyoncé‘s “Upgrade U” to Color Me Badd‘s “I Wanna Sex You Up,” a bunch of other artists tried to get some of her sauce, bruh. In addition, Wright was an individual who marched to the beat of her own drum, son. Hell, NO ONE could tell her what to do with her career, man. She was determined to be her authentic self and she succeeded, fam.

Last, but certainly not least, let’s talk about Andre Harrell. Now, based on the music that I grew up on, Harrell might’ve had the biggest influence on me. Listen, his label, Uptown Records, was the springboard for so much shit that impacted Black culture. From Diddy to The Notorious B.I.G. to Mary J. Blige to Jodeci to Guy to Heavy D to Al B. Sure!, Harrell had his foot on the neck of an entire era, bruh. On top of that, his artists worked with producers like Teddy Riley and Timbaland, which further led to the rise of entities like The Neptunes. Basically, Harrell is responsible for A LOT of Black music in the late 1980s and early 1990s. Frankly, his tentacles were on EVERYTHING, son.

In the end, RIP to the legends, man. Ultimately, all of this shit is garbage, fam. By and by, 2020 is the meanest motherfucker I’ve ever seen. At the end of the day, I can’t take anymore bad news, bruh. For God‘s sake, can this year chill already? Please and thanks. LC out.

That Babyface & Teddy Riley Battle Hurt My Heart

Son. SON! What type of tomfoolery was Teddy Riley on Saturday night? Real talk, I can’t even put into words how disappointed I am in him. Like, his Instagram battle with Babyface was supposed to be one for the ages, man. But, instead, it turned into a classic example of doing too fucking much. Now, I’m fully aware of the fact that they’re supposed to run it back. However, I’d be lying if I said that I was still excited, fam. All in all, Riley ruined all of the momentum, bruh.

Ok, for those who missed it, Saturday night was supposed to be a party. Now, somehow, Swizz Beatz and Timbaland actually convinced Riley and Babyface to duke it out on social media. Anyway, after a couple of delays, mostly the fact that Babyface was recovering from the coronavirus, both parties were ready to rumble. Well, in actuality, only Babyface was ready for the smoke. Homie sat in his home studio with a mic and some headphones and watched Riley look like a fool for an hour and a half.

Son, for this battle, Riley had two mics, a keyboard, a DJ, a drummer, a hype man and 80 other motherfuckers in the room. On top of that, he had a livestream of the event going to teddyrileylive.com. All the while, nobody seemed to realize that EVERYTHING WAS ECHOING! Man, every word that he spoke and every record that he played echoed grotesquely. So, all of his classic songs were getting ruined by his own fucking setup.

The sad part is, even without the audio difficulties, Babyface was serving him, fam. I mean, let’s just look at what they played, bruh. Riley hit ’em with Doug E. Fresh‘s “The Show” and Babyface responded with a live version of The Deele‘s “Two Occasions.” Next, Riley played Guy‘s “Groove Me” and Babyface came back with Bobby Brown‘s “Don’t Be Cruel.” Now, I personally love “Groove Me” more, but I also understand that the general public will choose Bobby Brown over Guy. So, being objective, that’s two rounds for Babyface. Finally, Riley played Hi-Five‘s “I Like The Way (The Kissing Game)” and Babyface finished him with “Every Little Step.” With all of that being said, that’s basically three rounds to none for Babyface, son.

Now, keep in mind, during this entire exchange, Riley’s audio was echoing. Meaning, the audience couldn’t get into a groove with any of his shit, man. Anyway, after all of the shenanigans, both parties ended the Live and vowed to reschedule. As of right now, the battle is slated to happen again tonight. All I know is, Riley needs to just sit his ass somewhere with a pair of headphones and get to work. Leave all of the other bullshit at the door, fam. The way I see it, his catalog deserves MUCH better, bruh.

In the end, I’m just disappointed with how all of this went down, son. Coming into this, I felt like a lot of these youngins didn’t understand how classic Teddy Riley’s discography is. Ultimately, he didn’t do himself any favors with that shit-show, man. By and by, less is more, fam. Less is fucking more. In any case, we’ll see if he can get this shit right, bruh. Either way, Babyface was ready for the action, brethren. That is all. LC out.

The Bruno Mars Hate Doesn’t Make Sense

So, let me get straight to the point, son. The hate that Bruno Mars is receiving right now is pure nonsense, man. In my eyes, calling Mars a “cultural appropriator” is inaccurate, fam. From my vantage point, there’s a difference between inspiration and theft. Now, are a lot of Mars’ musical sources identifiable? Absolutely. However; the style of damn near EVERY artist can be traced to some predecessor. With that being said, what’s the real fucking beef with Mars, bruh?

Ok, for those who missed it, let me explain how all of this began. Now, in a video for The Grapevine, writer Seren Sensei went on a tangent about her disdain for Mars. According to her, Mars borrows too much from Black artists and shouldn’t be allowed to get a pass since he isn’t Black. In addition, she believes that he “plays up” his racial ambiguity in order to pull the wool over our eyes. All in all, she went full Super Saiyan on him and I think it’s a bit misguided, son.

Now, to me, a cultural appropriator is someone who doesn’t recognize or admit where they got their style from. By that definition, Mars doesn’t fit the mold, man. Honestly, all that guy does is give credit to the artists who came before him. Real talk, just take a look at his “Album of the Year” speech for 24K Magic at the Grammys. Fam, he literally thanked Babyface, Teddy Riley and Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis for inspiring him! On top of that, during an interview with Latina, he went into great detail about how all American music has its roots in Black music. So, if he’s actually giving credit to his sources, what’s the fucking problem, bruh?! I mean, are Black people the only ones who are allowed to embrace the Funk?

Look, if anybody doesn’t like Mars’ songs, then just say that, son. On the real, people are 100% entitled to their personal tastes. However; criticizing him for being a cultural appropriator or a vulture is just foolish, man. Real talk, all that dude does is give credit to Black musicians and Black artistry. Shit, just look at his band, fam! It’s literally nothing but Black and Brown players! What the hell else do people want, bruh?! In my eyes, this entire debate is fucking stupid, folks. At the end of the day, baseless accusations and name-calling won’t stop me from enjoying his discography.

In the end, let’s just chill out with the tomfoolery, son. Ultimately, we all have a choice, man: we can either enjoy Mars’ music or not. However; no one should be judged for digging his songs. By and by, the man is inspired by Black music and makes no secret of it. So, if he’s actually tipping his hat to his musical forefathers, then no one out there has a credible beef, fam. That is all. LC out.

Bruno Mars Made A Blackity-Black A*s Album

So, I should have written something about Bruno Mars24K Magic album sooner, but I was too busy listening to it on repeat. Honestly speaking, this album is unskippable, man! I’m not even sure if unskippable is a word, but that’s the only way to describe this album, son. In nine songs, Mars legitimately chronicled all of Black music since the early 1970s. With that being said, I would be remiss if I didn’t talk about this masterpiece.

Now, when I say that Bruno made a Blackity-Black ass album, I’m referring to the fact that it references so many past legends. “24K Magic” is essentially a Zapp song, “Perm” is a James Brown song, “Versace On The Floor” is a Freddie Jackson song and “Finesse” is vintage Teddy Riley. In those four songs alone, Bruno was able to synthesize different styles from across three different decades. He basically made an album of Top 40 songs that references Top 40 songs from past eras. Honestly, it’s fucking uncanny how he was able to replicate some of these sounds, man. On the aforementioned “Finesse,” which is my favorite song on the album, I’m convinced he stole some of Teddy’s keyboards, bro. The sound is way too perfect, son.

Ultimately, I could keep going, but there’s really nothing else that needs to be said. If anyone is a fan of Black music, they’ll definitely be a fan of this album. Side note, let’s be real, damn near ALL music stems from Black music. Don’t even try to fight me on this, son. In any case, I’m just happy to see an artist breathe new life into some of these genres, man. In addition, I’m hyped to hear musicianship again. When I listen to a lot of music these days, I wonder if some of these “artists” even know what an instrument is. Then again, that’s a discussion for another day, son. Now, go listen to that Bruno Mars album! Good day.