Monday, December 20, 2010

soul food: take a minute

peep the latest video from k'naan: take a minute (directed by nabil elderkin)


Friday, December 17, 2010

soul food: mike e + afroflow

an american born in ethiopia, mike-e is a spoken-word artist and emcee with something to say.


his album afroflow ii pays tribute to the fact that hip-hop flows from africa and his music is heavily influenced by the sounds of africa, in general and ethiopia in particular. 

in addition to being an incredible lyricist and poet, mike-e has also used his music to generate awareness and promote change and social responsibility both in america and in ethiopia.  his annual afroflow tour is a collaboration with the american cancer society and aims at engaging youth and families in the fight against cancer. in ethiopia, he has launched the christmas in ethiopia campaign which is raising funds to purchase uniforms, educational supplies, and gifts for children affected by HIV/AIDS. all proceeds from album sales in december will go to this fund. listen and buy the album, here

good music + art creating change = awesome.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

soul food: i love you more

as i eagerly await john forte's upcoming album, water, light, sound, he continues to drop little morsels of awesome. here's his latest, 'i love you more':


Friday, December 3, 2010

flashback friday: sample goodness

it's friday!

track: loungin' by ll cool j feat. total

sample: who do you love by bernard wright


Wednesday, September 29, 2010

soul food: asa's 'beautiful imperfection' [preview]


Friday, September 24, 2010

soul food: shad + von pea and donwill: rose garden (remix)

this is turning into an all-shad-all-the-time blog but, uh, this is too good not to share. check out shad's 'rose garden' remix, featuring tanya morgan's von pea and donwill. and it's the hotness.

download here

Monday, September 20, 2010

soul food: shad k's 'we, myself, and i' [video]

from the awesomeness that is TSOL, shad k's latest single, we, myself, and i:

pure dopeness.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

interviews: john forté

john forté talks about his upcoming album, water, light, sound:


Thursday, September 2, 2010

quotables: soul mate


Saturday, August 7, 2010

soul food: k'naan 'take a minute'

...and any man who knows a thing knows he knows not a damn, damn thing at all...


Tuesday, August 3, 2010

a thousand [and one] hills

a few weeks ago, i was listening to zoe chace interview ms. lauryn hill on NPR. it appeared as though ms. hill was back: performing again, talking about recording again. i took to twitter and facebook and tentatively shouted it from the various virtual mountaintops. my prayers to the gods of music had been answered: ms. hill is back. i had no idea, at the time, that on her journey back, she would show up in my proverbial back yard. a little over a week ago, i was standing backstage at a concert that i had dreamed of attending since i was about 17. as the announcer began his introduction, i stood next to ms. hill as she climbed the steps to take the stage at the pan african dance festival in kigali, rwanda and i had myself a moment, y'all. i suddenly snapped out of professional organizational mode and fully realized what was happening. ms. hill was back. and she was here. in the land of a thousand hills. if you had told me 15 years ago that this was even possible, there is no way i would've been able to fathom it. but a few brilliant people with a vision and relentless determination made it happen! and i bore witness.

this is the exact time negrita's brain realized what she was witnessing. more here...

soul food: k'naan's bang bang

K'Naan & Adam Levine : Bang bang (2010)

yeah, i know a lot of hardcore dustyfoot philosopher fans that this video is going to give pause.
but i'm digging the imagery and the execution. dopeness.


Friday, July 16, 2010


friday = awesome. it usually means i do some writing as well, back is raging against me for God knows what, so i'm going to posts links to some food for thought that i've come across over the past week and then go lie flat in a darkened room. (shout out to the fug girls for the friday link idea)

  • was just explaining black hair politics to a friend the other day, then came across this great article in clutch about the politics of hair in south africa. (
  • and, lawd...bassey ikpi, like, TOTALLY GETS ME. i love her recent piece on the constant struggle of learning to let go and stop missing: emotional hoarding. (bassey's world)
happy friday, y'all!!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

soul food: john forte's 'your side'

so, even though i STOPPED watching the world cup after ghana was ROBBED *pause for effect*, i'm still listening to the awesome soundtrack. here's a gem that i cannot stop listening to: (via CoffeeBreakDMV)


Tuesday, July 6, 2010

la la la: when a song says it better than i can


quotables: going further

"Push yourself beyond when you think you are done with what you have to say. Go a little further. Sometimes when you think you are done, it is just the edge of the beginning. Probably that’s why we decide we’re done. It’s getting too scary. We are touching down onto something real. It is beyond the point when you think you are done that something strong comes out… I give this advice out of pure experience. Go further than you think you can."

Natalie Goldberg
(via Jody Watley: Style File)


Friday, July 2, 2010

quotables: writing

"My advice to writers just starting out? Don’t use semi-colons! They are transvestite hermaphrodites, representing exactly nothing. All they do is suggest you might have gone to college."

Kurt Vonnegut (Armageddon in Retrospect)

via Danyel Smith


Monday, June 28, 2010

quotables: dreams.

came across three quotes today that spoke to me (and reiterated so much of what i've been thinking/talking/dreaming about, of late):

'no amount of security is worth the suffering of a life chained to a routine that has killed your dreams.' ~ unknown

'you've got to follow your passion. you've got to figure out what it is you love--who you really are. and have the courage to do that. i believe that the only courage anybody ever needs is the courage to follow your own dream.' ~ auntie o. (aka, oprah winfrey)

it is never too late to be what you might have been ~ george eliot


Friday, June 25, 2010

remembering the magic: michael jackson 1958-2009

one year ago, when we heard of michael jackson's passing, my sister said that since she was a child, she'd always wondered where she'd be when that news came. today, everyone is remembering where they were when they heard. i first heard the news on twitter. michael jackson rushed to the hospital. cardiac arrest. a little while later, news of his death hit and my immediate reaction was complete denial. part of me is still in denial, i think. how can someone whose music is so interwoven into the fabric of so many lives be gone, just like that? i kept waiting for someone to announce that it was, indeed, a hoax. that it was yet another rumour flying out of control. but as the hours passed, and i stayed up all night on twitter...more confirmation poured in. i still could not fathom it. it was too big and too shocking to comprehend, somehow. it's like the child in me was stubbornly refusing to acknowledge what was happening. plugging my ears, and shutting my eyes, and shaking my head vigorously until it all went away. it wasn't until the televised memorial service that it started to sink in. michael jackson was gone. michael jackson, who had always been bigger than life. michael jackson who--even in my adulthood--never lost his magic. he was more than a man, more than an artist. he was a beautiful spirit, whose influence cannot be ignored. his impact is felt every single day, all over the world. he transcended race and nationality. he was music. he was dance. he was style. he was artistry. he was a true entertainer.

he was the best. simply. and he always will be. he is my first memory of truly LOVING music. thriller was the first album i memorized all the lyrics to. 'thriller' is the first video that enchanted me and made me fall in love with dance. that red leather jacket is the first item of clothing i remember obsessing over. he's been gone for a year, and his absence is palpable. it's a void that i'll always feel and that will never be filled. we have lost a master, a legend, a true work of art, a powerful force. and that is something that cannot be denied, despite one's personal opinion of the man. it's just fact.

i still cannot accept the fact that he's gone. i wish i could thank him for all he meant. i pray he felt the love more than he felt the mockery and the fear and the misunderstanding. i hope he knew he was loved. i hope, in the end, his gift was more of a blessing than a burden.

rest in peace and power, michael jackson. i love you as much now as i did when i first laid eyes on the thriller cover and declared that you were my boyfriend for life. there will never be another.

...gone too soon...


Thursday, June 24, 2010

soul food: somi's 'prayer'

somi's first single from her exquisite album if the rains come first has just debut over on check out the interview, here.

'prayer to the saint of the brokenhearted':

love the tribute to harlem!


Wednesday, June 23, 2010

soul food: afropolitanic nomads: shadk + k'naan on tour

this just in: shadrach kabango and k'naan on tour together, this fall.

afropolitanic nomadic lyrically genius awesome, all in one show.

a little reminder of why i have nothing but love for my favorite african canadian lyricists


la la la: when a song says it better than i can.

As long as we got each other
There's nothing in the world that can steal my joy
Yeah, As long as we got each other
We can overcome the madness of the world


food for thought....

if you will relax & allow Law of Attraction to do the organization, the managing, then you can spend your time doing the things that please you.

~ Abraham-Hicks
(via les delices)


Tuesday, May 18, 2010

soul food: afropolitana: shad TSOL

just a reminder, y'all.


Thursday, April 29, 2010

soul food: nas + damian marley's 'as we enter'

today's soundtrack has just been injected with some awesome in the form of this track from nas and damian marley from their forthcoming album distant relatives.

'as we enter'

(video directed, once again, by nabil elderkin)

love the fact that (inspired by k'naan) they sampled mulatu atske 'yegelle tezeta'



Friday, April 23, 2010

soul food: afropolitana: shad k

i have waxed poetic in previous posts about the awesomeness that is shadrach kabango.

his next album T.O.S.L is due out on may 25th and, from what i've heard so far, we may not be ready for it's dopeness. (yes. that's a word.)

here's the video for his first single 'yaa, i get it'.

listen to more music from the forthcoming album, here. ('rose garden' is killing me softly with it's awesome.)


soul food: maxwell's fistful of tears

classic. elegant. beautiful.

Maxwell - Fistful Of Tears (Official Video)


soul food: moments

uh, i know this blog is a little 'wavin' flag'ged out right now, don't care! big ups to K'naan who took home two Juno Awards for Artist of the Year and Songwriter of the Year. woot! this moment has been a long time coming:

listen to an in-depth interview with K'naan on Q with Jian Ghomeshi, here.


Thursday, March 18, 2010

universal anthem

this song is truly the perfect anthem. here are two of the latest renditions of K'naan's Wavin' Flag:

Young Artists for Haiti

The Official World Cup Anthem (feat David Bisbal)

aaand, finally, the video for the album version (directed, once again, by the awesome Nabil)


Thursday, March 4, 2010

badu's back

empress erykah perfoms 'window seat' on jimmy fallon, backed by the legendary roots crew.

loving the hat. side-eye-ing the leotard (?). loving her.


Tuesday, March 2, 2010

give me freedom, give me fire...

official video for k'naan's FIFA World Cup anthem, 'wavin' flag: coca-cola celebration remix':

99 days til the World Cup is hosted by South Africa.

wave ya flag!!!


Tuesday, February 16, 2010

negrita's soundtrack: the tour

and, now, ladies and gentlemen...the tweet negrita has been waiting for:

@john_forte: It's official - K'Naan, Wale, and John Forte coming to a town near you this Spring!




Thursday, February 11, 2010

let freedom reign: nelson mandela

today marks 20 years since the release of Nelson Mandela, who spent 27 years of his life as a political prisoner.

i clearly remember watching his release on television on a cold winter morning, and writing about it in my little journal, which was ordinarily filled with angst-ridden pre-teen non-drama. after years of participating in anti-apartheid protests with my parents and their friends (my first taste of activism), i knew i was witnessing a moment that would forever impact the continent, and the world.

"There is no easy walk to freedom anywhere, and many of us will have to pass through the valley of the shadow of death again and again before we reach the mountaintop of our desires."

"Let freedom reign. The sun never set on so glorious a human achievement."

--Nelson Mandela

if you have not already, read about his epic journey in Mandela's 'Long Walk to Freedom.'
and 'When Mandela Turned Down Freedom' via Khaya Dlanga.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

soul food: erykah's 'window seat'

more new music of awesome.
here's 'window seat' by erykah badu, from her forthcoming release new amerykah pt. 2: return of the ankh.
over the past year or so: new k'naan, john forte, maxwell, sade, common, mos def, q-tip...and now erykah. at this point...all i need is lauryn and d'angelo to come back and i'll be complete. next up...groove theory!!!


Thursday, January 14, 2010

teddy pendergrass

we have a lost an incredible talent and a true legend.
may his soul rest in eternal peace.

Teddy Pendergrass first gained notoriety as a member of the Philadelphia group, Harold Melvin and the Bluenotes.

in 1977 he begun his solo career, and went on to become the first African American to have five consecutive platinum albums. in 1982 Pendergrass was injured in a car accident, which left him paralyzed from mid-chest down but which did not stop his momentum. two years later, he returned with his next album, which featured this single (and which is when i first fell in love with his voice):

you will be missed, Teddy. truly.

Teddy Pendergrass