Guess what? I’m upset! I am flippin upset this morning, ladies & gentlemen BUT in the same vein also, I am so damn elated this morning! & NO it’s not an oxymoron lol!
Lemme tell you why the hell I’m upset this morning… Believe it OR not but we had our article for Offbeat all ready to go this week (for those of you who know me as a writer, you’ll know that this is a really mean feat because I’m usually a ‘lastminute.com’ kinda guy with my writing)! I was gonna come in here and we were gonna have a delightful albeit heated conversation about the best R&B album of the 21st Century! My homegirl @ work had suggested usher’s ‘Confessions’ while I reckoned D’Angelo’s ‘Voodoo’ was up there somewhere… The facebook massive thought it was Sade’s ‘Lover’s Rock’, a few good people on twitter felt very strongly about Justin Timberlake’s ‘Future Sex/Love Sounds’ (I personally prefer ‘Justified’)… Destiny’s Child’s ‘Destiny Fulfilled’, Jon B’s ‘Stronger Everyday’, & Chrisette Michelle’s ‘Epiphany’ were some of the other albums that came up in early conversations & I was well looking forward to getting stuck in on this one… I was even gonna bring up Aaliyah’s third studio album ‘Aaliyah’ as a definite top 5! & let’s not forget Lauryn Hill’s ‘Miseducation of Lauryn Hill’ which is by all means an R&B album (let the arguments begin here lol).. I was all amped up for this…
… BUT!!! But something happened over the weekend that I felt I just had to share… In other words, my hand was forced. Trust me I wasn’t chuffed about NOT having this ’21st Century’s Best R&B album’ conversation with you but then again, I am so excited about the events of the weekend
OK unto why I am soo elated & excited & all that good stuff… Now I could tell you why the kid’s so ‘on top of the moon’ this morning BUT why don’t I just show you instead?
It’s Amy Winehouse, ladies & gentlemen!!! Its Amy BLOODY Winehouse & she’s SO like, BACK! I love it! I absolutely love it!!! She’s looking healthy… healthier than I’ve seen her in a long while! Still loving the bee-hive hair-do & she looks like she’s enjoying herself. I love the way she’s vibes-ing on that stage… That stage by the way was the Virgin Media’s 2009 V festivals at Hyland Parks, Chelmsford where Coventry’s finest, The Specials brought on Amy, who, I should add, was glowing with a gorgeous tan, for the final two songs of their already glorious set, ‘You’re Wondering Now’ & ‘Ghost Town’… She did the BIZ-I-NESS!!!
& while I am in NO way saying that Ms. Winehouse is a ‘bigger’ topic than the Best R&B Album of the last 9 years, what I am saying is, this is kind of a BIG deal to me & to any lover of GOOD Music for that matter… Because let’s be honest, Amy Winehouse’s first two albums especially ‘Back to Black’ >>>>>>> 90% of the female R&B albums released this century (YEAH I SAID IT!)
So WHY all the hoopla about this ‘less-than-10-minutes’ cameo performance by Ms. Winehouse? Well this is Amy’s first UK performance since last year’s V festivals, which she headlined to somewhat mixed reviews… She hasn’t taken to a UK stage in like 12 months? Now that’s just ridiculously long + the fact (or NOT) that she’s been in the Caribbeans all year apparently sorting herself out & getting s**t together… Everybody & I mean EVERYBODY (that matters really) has been waiting for the re-emergence of quite frankly the Briggite Bardot of this century (Karl Lagerfeld made the comparison & you know when he speaks, we have to listen!) & it was rather a pleasant surprise to see her at the V festivals! She’s put on some weight, she’s looking really good & she looks like she’s enjoying herself (I already said that, didn’t I?)… Sounds like very good news to me!
Talking about the V festivals, one of my favorite sets from the weekend (August 22nd & 23rd) was Lily Allen’s set @ Hyland Park. The woman flew in from watching the fifth Ashes test at the Oval on Saturday to take the stage at Chelmsford (she loves her cricket BOI!) for her performance with her former single, ‘Not Fair‘ taking the absolute cake of her 14-track set (Did you peep them killer heels & uber hot pants? Lily Allen totally ROCKS!)… East London’s finest, Tinchy Stryder, who’s sophomore L.P ‘Catch 22’ is neck-in-neck with Calvin Harris’s ‘Ready for the Weekend’ for that coveted Number 1 Spot on the U.K Album Charts (EDIT – ‘Catch 22′ came in @ Number 2), was the business at The Arena Stage in Chelmsford also on Saturday taking to the stage freestyling over The Chemical Brothers’ ‘Block Rockin Beats’ and closing the set with crowd favorite ‘Number 1‘…
Sunday, the 23rd, saw some stand-out performances from Asher Roth, who at The Arena in Stafford, stole the show with his rendition of Black Eyed Peas’ ‘Boom Boom Pow’ & his HIT single ‘I Love College‘ & Calvin Harris, who was celebrating his Number 1 spot on the UK albums chart this week, also at The Arena in Stafford, went in HARD on his ten-track set with gems such as crowd favorite ‘The Girls’ and summer classic ‘Acceptible in the 80’s’ but it was set closer ‘I’m Not Alone‘ that totally sealed his stellar performance… My two personal favorite moments from Sunday were undoubtedly when Snow Patrol, covering for Oasis at the V festivals after Oasis had pulled out of closing out the festivals on Sunday (because front-man, Liam Gallagher fell ill with Viral Laryngitis), did their rendition of Oasis classic ‘Wonderwall‘ on the V stage in Chelmsford & when Keane, who were headlining on the 4Music stage, did an acoustic version of Oasis’s ‘Cast No Shadow‘. OASIS f**king ROCK ladies & gentlemen!!! & we love The V festivals too!!!
BUT back to Ms. Amy Winehouse… I’m so excited for some new music from her, I can hardly contain myself to be honest. I hear from the grapevine that she’s traveling to Miami to work with Salaam Remi for her third album… Can I just say here now that Amy Winehouse + Salaam Remi = AMAZINGLY Beautiful Music (+ Mark Ronson = Even More So Amazingly BEAUTIFUL Music) so let’s do this! OMG I am so excited as I type this… Asides from waiting to listen to Jay-Z’s Bluprint 3 album on September 11th, I dunno what else musically has gotten me this much in anticipation so far in 2009 & just in case you needed a reminder as to how GOOD Ms. Winehouse actually really is, then please click HERE or HERE or why don’t you enjoy this right here…
That’s that Undeniable music right there… Ms. Amy Winehouse, ladies & gentlemen! Embrace the goodness, why don’t you?
… BUT with rumours going around that Ms. Winehouse and that ‘waste of space’ ex-husband of hers, Blake Fielder-Civil might be getting back together & about how she wants to carry his baby (I swear he was the one who introduced her to all the drugs & hence the problems in the first place! Then why oh Lord why is she still pining over this wasteman? This thing called ‘love’ heh? Make us do the stupidest things!), I fear that this healthy Amy that we’ve been graced with over the weekend may just be nothing more than a flash in the pan… I sincerely hope NOT though because the world needs some new material from Ms. Winehouse (I know I do!)
Until the Next Time…
Peace, Love & that GOOD Music