“Barbra Stresiand” (Video) by Duck Sauce

This is hella funny to me.

Santigold, Pharell Williams, Exra Keonig, ?uestLove, and Kanye West random make random appearances on this video called “Barbra Stresiand” by Duck Sauce.  Peep the bootleg impersonator. I love it!

So who is Duck Sauce? I like his myspace definition:  “Duck Sauce is Armand Van Helden and A-Trak making house music and eating Chinese food. Who’s hungry? Quack quack”

Nican Robinson: A Look into a Photographer’s Soul

It’s always interesting to watch an artist’s life unfold right before your eyes and I had a chance to meet one that was so inspiring it immediately took my weekend into a world of creativity.  Nican Robinson is a local photographer in the Bay Area that may be seen at your Monday soul events or local concerts but he possess a talent that I rarely see in people that take pictures; it is his ability to capture the beauty of the human body.  Born and raised in Oakland, a graduate of UC Berkeley, college athlete, and a salsa dance king, Nican Robinson proves me to be one of the most outstanding and illustrious photographers in the Bay Area.

Reesa: When did you first start doing photography?

Nican: This may be a surprise but how long do you think?

Reesa: I’m not good with guessing but your work is phenomenal so I would say in High school.

Nican: February 14th at 9 pm 2009.  My life was surrounded by athletics, all the men in my family played basketball and football.  After the big game with Stanford, I sat down with my dad and expressed to him that I wanted to pursue photography so immediately my dad ran into the room and brought out a Nikon B50 and just gave it to me and from then on it was history.

Reesa:It’s not so often that you find a photographer who started only two years ago and has built a professional platform that can rank with some of the veterans. So what do you have an eye for or what is your inspiration when shooting?

Nican: Different aspects or occurrences that happen in my life are my inspiration.  I come from a very loving and nurturing family, sometimes my family is referred to the Cosby’s…like no joke.  My father does not wear the sweaters but were pretty much Cosby-like.

Reesa: (laughs) Ok, I was looking at your photos on your website and I really liked your black and white portraits. What makes you choose to do black and white versus color?

The Blackout

Nican: That a good question. The reason why I think that black and white photos should be used is number one; depending on what you photograph, colors tell you the answer but when using black and white it has to be read and felt. And two; the energy of the photo is locked into your imagination and you really have to feel the emotion.

Reesa: How do you go about capturing the perfect photo?

Nican: When I go about capturing a picture I use all different type of models and bakcgrounds.  Whether you are big, small, tall, the human body is a model.  It all depends on the situations on how I’m feeling.  I’ll go and reach out to a certain person and express the situation through my photography.

Reesa: One of my favorite models you shot is Adryan Sterling.  I love how you can capture her beauty from a different perspective. How do you define Beauty in the human body?

Model: Adryan Sterling

Nican: My answer is very simple but my meaning is deep. Everything is beautiful.  Everybody has a beauty about them; they may not see or recognize it.  As an artist/photographer you can pull the inner beauty out of someone.  When you look at my photos you can feel the beauty in every one of my models.  My goal is to define the beauty that people ignore within themselves.

Reesa: As an artist we tend to appeal to all of our senses when it comes to creativity.  So choosing one of the five; what sound or noise do you love the most? And why?

Nican: I like the sound of the dishwasher.  It’s really calming.  My mother would turn the dishwasher on and it at night and it would be soothing to me when I fall asleep. Also, I love the sound of Sam Cooke, even the song “Keep Moving On” he talks about how things in life happen but you have to keep moving on.

Nican Robinson is currently working in Oakland to pursue his career as a professional photographer.  Every week he has current projects that he displays on his blog www.thee-exhale.blogspot.com and his portfolio at www.nicanrobinson.com


“Villains” The Mixtape by Supreme Sketch

After many years, days, contemplation, and a rites of passage, Supreme Sketch releases his first mixtape “Villains” as an independent solo artist.  Born Anthony Ragland and raised in the Bay Area, Supreme Sketch has always had a love for music and the Hip Hop culture.  He decided to use his “Villain” alias to capture the essence of him as an artist. When describing his movement he says, “I really feel like there is good in every bad guy.  Villains make it happen, regardless.” By throwing up the peace sign to stamp Villain on the map, Supreme Sketch has made himself a known staple for upcoming artists of the bay area.  The mixtape itself as he describes “Down to earth music; if you aren’t down to earth or understand my perspective with life you will not be able to relate to this mixtape.”  Sketch uses original beats and well-known samples to help him tell his real life scenarios that one can relate too.  In my opinion, he gives me the feel good music vibe but I can also crank it up when I want to hear a message. “Color Boxes” derives from his phase as a shoe head and by using this as a metaphor you are able to figure out the meaning behind it.  My favorite songs happen to be Color Boxes, Back Stabbers and Show Me, but I’ll let you be your own judge.

Download the exclusive mixtape HERE

The Black Ivy x Street Etiquette

Photo Courtesy of Street Etiquette Website

The “Young, Gifted, and Black” is a beautiful thing in society today.  I’ve noticed a buzz this week about “Black Ivy” which is an editorial video done by http://www.streetetiquette.com illustrating the prep fashion that is so common amongst Historically Black Colleges and University. And as an Hampton Alumna, I would know this fashion style pretty well. Street Etiquette is a fashion and style blog owned by Joshua Kissi and Travis Gumbs of New York.  When you watch the video take not of the different faces of black men on a college campus.  They covered the books, the sports, and the looks quite well. I just love short films and black men especially.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Direct Link: http://streetetiquette.com/2010/09/23/the-black-ivy-2/

Shout Out to Clutch Magazine for being a great source 🙂

Sundays in the Redwoods: Concert Series 2010

Sundays in the Redwoods is a concert series in Oakland, California where people from all over the bay area gathered at Joaquin Miller Park to celebrate different genres of music each weekend. Hosted by the Oakland’s office of Parks & Recreation and Vice Mayor Jean Quan, the community is given different series of concerts for the fall; Wold Music Day (Sept 19th), Soul Symphony (Sept. 26th), The Rythmn Section(Oct. 3rd), and Talking All That Jazz (Oct. 10th).  The artists headlining the upcoming series will be Angie Stone, Goerge Duke, Martin Luther, Michael Morgan, Pete Escovedo, Stable Wilson, and this past Sunday was Oakland’s own, Goapele, alongside The Oakland East Bay Symphony.  Unfortunately I was unable to attend but, photographer Fredrick Shavies (@fredshavies) of http://www.3680photography.com, did an outstanding job at capturing the essence of the artist and her band, time of day, and influence Oakland has on music culture.

Tickets are a $5 Donation, Gates open at 1 pm and starts at 2pm every Sunday.

You can get them online as well as view the program guide for future reference http://www.sundaysintheredwoods.com/

Afro Chic’s Pick: Hairtrition Conditioner

What caught my eye as I was strolling down the aisle of Sally beauty supply were the nutrition facts on this bottle.  I immediately felt that my hair would eat up this conditioner in no time.  It’s literally everything you need in a bottle for the fall season. We are so busy trying to take care of every aspect of our body to ensure healthy living we always seem to neglect our hair, and mines is screaming “give me vitamins!!!” So I tried it, and so far so good.  Here I have the Hairtrition Color Protection Conditioner but the line is equipped with conditioners, shampoos, leave-ins, and sprays that can fit your personal lifestyle and current hair condition. That photo of me below is me after I washed and set my hair, please excuse me unenthused expression on my face.

Chic Facts: formulated with Coconut Oil, Sunflower Seed Extract and UVA/UVB Protectants, extends the life of your hair color up to 66%*. Hairtrition delivers vital nutrients your hair requires to be unbelievably manageable, silky, shiny and radiant. only $6 at Sally Beauty supply!

“This Time” Short Film dedicated to Lives Protecting Our Country

Check out this short film entitled “This Time” which was written by Reagan Gomez-Preston and directed by Matthew A. Cherry starring Reagan Gomez, Michael Moss, Terri J. Vaugn, and Sinorice Moss.  This film tells a story of a recently returned Iraqi war veteran, Kevin (Michael Moss) that finds out the love of his life, Cheyenne (Reagan Gomez) is getting married.  He confronts her about the situation and forces her to make a life changing decision.  Please watch and find to find out the answer!

“This film is dedicated to the men and women who have given their lives to protect our country. And their family members with whom their memory lives on.”

The writer, producers, and actors did a great job at capturing the emotion in relationships, trials, and tribulations of the family and loved ones who fight for our country.  I cannot fathom how it must feel to have the love of your life oversees when at any moment he or she can lose their life and never to return.  By covering the issues of neglect, love, and loss I was able to feel passion in my heart for these type of situations.  After viewing this film tell me what you think? And for all those affected by a fallen soldier near and far this is dedicated to you.

Director: Matthew Cherry
Written By: Reagan Gomez
Executive Producer: Liberty Madison
Director Of Photography: Zubari Duniani
Edited By: Reginald Harrison
Production Company: Cherry Entertainment in association with Liberty Madison Productions and Supremacy Films

Visit http://www.ourfallensoldier.com to make a donation.

Afro Chics Pick: Curly Chicks Expression Tees

Curly Chicks is an online boutique designed specifically for the naturally curly sistahs.  Stocked with accessories, jewelry, and apparel you will be sure to find something that fits you.  I love expression tees and have featured many and I find Curly Chicks to be so adorable because they have a line for the little ones. Whether you are a curly chick or know one, these make great stocking stuffers (yes I’m thinking Christmas already).

Here are the Logo Designs:

Make sure you visit www.curlychicksonline.com for more details!

ZahZarah- Cry Over You feat. Phonte (video)

I’m a sucka for VH1 Soul and I saw her on there with “Why Dontcha Call Me No More” a few months ago and couldn’t help but follow her progress.  ZahZarah stepped out into the scene  as Erykah Badu’s backup singer in 2000 where she then signed to Keo Music Records and released her debut album “Here Me” in 2001 and her second one “Blackstar” in 2003. I’ll just press fast forward and say that ever since joining The Foreign Exchange music she has been rockin’. ZahZarah finally released her visual for “Cry Over You” with a feature from Phonte of Little Brother/The Foreign Exchange…and I absolutely love it!  The song sounds happy and the video matches it with a girls day out of shopping, cruising the streets, and just feeling free again.  I like it because she says “It feels like I’m right back where I started again” and in the video you can tell her start is not laying in bed crying and depressed over a man. LOL

Oh and shout out to the Dark Skinned Sistahs doing their thang! I see YOU!