Thursday, October 16, 2014

Throwback Thursday: "Expression" by Salt-N-Pepa

As anyone who knows me knows, I am a self-proclaimed country (music) girl. Despite being born and raised in Philadelphia, my heartstrings most likely belong to a steel guitar. I worship at the altar of King George Strait and still consider The Judds' breakup one of the saddest things to ever happen in music.

Having said that, there is a part of my soul which belongs to hip-hop alone, a part craving its unmistakable, irreplaceable swagger and energy. For everything country music gives me, it cannot give me that.

Nothing else can.

And after the BET Awards took us back to 1994  with Brandy, MC Lyte, YoYo, and Queen Latifah's epic performance of "I Wanna Be Down (Remix)"the other night, I thought it fitting to dedicate today's Throwback Thursday category to the pioneering women of hip-hop, the ladies who paved the way for Kim, Foxy, and 'em.

And if I'm having this conversation, then I'm talking about Salt-N-Pepa.

Though "Whatta Man" is my favorite Salt-N-Pepa track--the En Vogueness of it all should make that obvious--the first SnP track I ever loved was from their third album, Blacks' Magic. As a young Christian girl not allowed to listen to secular music, I nevertheless saw this video on The Jukebox Network at my grandmother's house one afternoon, and my life was changed.

Though the camera work gives me vertigo and some of the outfits confuse and vex me, the song's simple, powerful message resonated with me then and still moves me nearly 25 years later.

"Go 'head, girls! Express yourselves!"

What say you? Hit me with a track from your favorite pioneering woman/women of hip-hop.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Seven (MORE) Random Questions with T.M. Franklin

Greetings, all!

To celebrate the recent release of TWELVE, Book 3 of the MORE Series, T.M. Franklin (How to Get Ainsley Bishop to Fall in Love with You) is back to answer seven more random questions about TWELVE.


1. TWELVE begins with Ava and Caleb trying to rescue Sophie, not that she appreciates it. Tell me about a time someone did something for you that you didn’t appreciate or understand until later.

I think a lot of what my parents did falls under this category. I always thought my dad was so strict (as did my friends) but really, in the end, I didn’t miss out on anything really important. And I came to really appreciate their parenting when I had my own kids.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Yellow Ledbetter: Heartbreak in Vampire Diaries 6x02

The Vampire Diaries Season 6 premiere was two weeks ago, and I didn't write about it because I didn't know what to say. Watching Elena mourn Damon...though not really...was strange and awkward, to say nothing of watching everyone scrambling and lost.

But my reactions to that episode weren't strong enough to warrant me sharing them, so I kept them to myself.

Such is not the case after "Yellow Ledbetter," the second episode of this already emotional season.

I have already rewatched this episode twice since Thursday and plan to watch it daily for the rest of my days.

Or at least until Damon returns to Mystic Falls.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Release Day! TWELVE by T.M. Franklin

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The action-packed conclusion to the MORE Trilogy is here!

Twelve cover

Ava Michaels is gifted, powerful, and — whether she likes it or not — part of a plot to take over the world.

It’s only been a few months since Ava Michaels discovered she has ties to an ancient people living in the shadows of the human world, despite their superior gifts and abilities. A select few don’t like hiding, however, and think it’s time to take control.

Now Ava’s caught up in a conspiracy in the works before she was even born. In fact, her birth was an integral part of the plan. She’s one of the Twelve, the most powerful Race ever created, and they were created for a purpose.

Turns out, Ava doesn’t like being told what to do.

All she wants is to start a new life with her boyfriend, Caleb Foster, but before they can even think about that, they must join forces with former enemies, seek out some powerful new friends, and figure out what exactly the Twelve, and their power-hungry leader, are up to.

Then, they have to find a way to stop them.

Friday, October 3, 2014

Awesomely Awful 80s Karate Rap

Prepare your mind for awesomeness.
The internet has offered many humorous gems over the years that have enriched my life and made me grateful to have wifi.

But this video...this TOTALLY 80s VIDEO...takes the cake and adds twelve layers, chocolate filling, and neon florets with sparkler centers.

From Samurai Studios, Inc., the group that brought you nothing you've ever seen before, this four-and-a-half-minute anthem brings us everything we loved about the 80s: big hair, electric hot pants with blouses and high heels, synthesized background instruments, rockers in headbands, cheesy green-screen action, aerobic routines masquerading as choreography.

And did I mention the song is about karate?

And performed by a Caucasian married couple?

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Throwback Thursday: "Cry For You" by Jodeci

Tonight is the premiere of Season 6 of Vampire Diaries, and I am FREAKING OUT. My beloved Delena is facing a crisis of supernatural proportions, and I cannot wait to find out where things stand.

What does this have to do with Throwback Thursday? Glad you asked!

See, Delena--the moniker given to Supercouple Damon and Elena--are not together right now. I won't tell you why, but let's just say there are more than miles between them. She is heartbroken, begging the universe to reunite them, and I second those emotions. Her epic meltdown in the Season 5 finale still makes me wanna fall out in the floor and wail 'til my throat is sore.

And that got me thinking about "Baby, please come back" songs.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014