NPR has added another one of my favorites to their 50 Great Voices series.  Mrs. L Boogie! Oops my bad, she only answers to Mrs. Hill now. 
I don't think I know anyone who does not like her music. She transcends generations. Gloria the Guru (mommy) still sings tries to sing her songs. The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill is a classic and has been in the dics changer in my trunk since I got my car in 2000 along with The Score. I've made sure she has her own  playlist on all my ipods. I think I'm one of the few who actually appreciated her MTV Unplugged album. I miss her voice. Hurry up and come back quick Mrs. Hill. We miss you!

Read the entire article after the jump. It's long but good.

Lauryn Hill at the Harmony 
Festival in June; courtesy of the Harmony Festival
  courtesy of the Harmony Festival

Lauryn Hill onstage at the Harmony Festival in Santa Rosa, Calif., on June 13 2010.

by Zoe Chace 
I interviewed a lot of people for my story about Lauryn Hill's voice. I had to, because I didn't know if I'd be able to speak to her myself. The singer and rapper last released a recording eight years ago. She rarely performs in the U.S., and she almost never gives interviews. But her fans haven't forgotten her — they're still pleading for her to come back. Hill is a fantastic singer, as well as one of the greatest MCs of all time, and the story of her voice is the story of a generation.
It doesn't take much for a group of 30-somethings to get nostalgic about Hill. Put her solo album, The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill, on at a bar, and it takes the crowd right back to college days or high-school summers. I met Daryl Lutz while he was hanging out with a group of friends on the deck of Marvin's Bar in downtown Washington, D.C.
"We went to school in Hampton, Va., and she came to do a show," he said. "It was one of the best times in my life — I mean, she spoke to me! We snuck backstage and I got her to sign my meal card. She said, 'This is your meal card, brother, you know?' I said, 'That's all I got.' She signed it, 'Eat well — L. Boogie.' That's something I'll never forget. I love her. I love her to death." 
I heard tons of stories like Lutz's that night — mostly closed with this plea: "Come back, Lauryn. We need you. Come back!" People spoke directly into the microphone, as if it were a telephone line. 

This costume for Exotic Mas Troupe was not present at the band launch. Their theme is Lost at Sea and I was planning on wearing spruced up version of The Sea, but I really like this one...

Pirate Princess

Contact Info:
Exotic mas New Winthropes
New Winthropes Village Saint John's, Antigua

via: Exotic Mas Troupe
My friends, Deb and Juliette sent this survey and I feel it's my social responsibility to share. I'm anxious to review the results. It would be nice to see if there is a huge difference between women in the African diaspora,  especially Caribbean women.
DESCRIPTION OF THE RESEARCH: You are invited to participate in a research study about African American/Black women, body image, eating patterns, and racism. This study is being conducted to understand how multiple aspects of African American/Black women’s lives affect their feelings about their physical appearance and their eating habits. The purpose of this study is to recognize the experiences of this population, so as to inform theory which influences psychological counseling services and the training of clinicians.

Your participation in this study is entirely anonymous. No identifying information will be connected to your responses.
Potential benefits of this study include furthering our understanding of African American/Black women’s body image and eating patterns. Your participation will be of great benefit to researchers and practitioners in the field of psychology, to build a better understanding of this under-served population.
The research will be conducted by a faculty member at the University of Hartford:
Christina M. Capodilupo, Ph.D.
Phone: (860) 768-5148.
Address: University of Hartford, 200 Bloomfield Avenue, West Hartford, CT 06117

TIME INVOLVEMENT: Your participation will take approximately 25-30 minutes..

HOW WILL RESULTS BE USED: The results of this study may be published and/or presented at various professional conferences in order to share the information.

Click here to take survey. Feel free to share...
I told you about my cousin's upcoming work out video just in time for Antigua's carnival. Check out her promo video.
Special DVD Segments:
All Levels

I just had to show you why I call Robert "Abs"

I guess I won't be right if I didn't throw in a pic of my Cuz

Only Snoop aka Bon Pimp can get away with something like this. He's always a comedian. This was genius. I love True Blood and I tolerate Snoop. This combo is perfect. You don't have to be a True Blood fan to appreciate is much funnier though.

Side note... While on the airplane coming back from NYC on Monday, I saw this chick in a Merlotte's T-Shirt. I need that in my life and I don't usually wear T-shirts.

Some things in the video to pay attention to:
Tru Nutz
Tru Blood
The Sookie dancers
Sookie ring and nameplate
Fangbanger Tank

I wanna do bad things with you...ya digg?!
This is so funny! You must watch this video in its entirety. I've seen police getting jam raped nuff times. The song nice too. Enjoy

The weekend before my NYC trip we decided on an impromptu outing. My dear friend at eat.drink.frolic suggested the Sound Table a few weeks ago. The Sound Table is owned by the same restaurateurs who owns TopFlr which we both heart; so this was an easy choice.

Parking was a challenge at the Sound Table which is located at 483 Edgewood Ave and Boulevard in the historic Old Fourth Ward. The ambiance was cool and the menu VERY interesting.

I started with a glass of Picpoul which will now be in my wine rotation.  It's a white wine that's smooth and crisp. I can tell it would be very easy to overindulge.

Bumm had a Pink City Ricky - Bilberry Vodka, Lime, Pink Peppercorn, Thyme syrup and Soda. Yes, thyme and peppercorn.  It took some getting use to but will get it again for sure.

The plates are small and they encourage sharing. We had the Belgian style frites with housemade mayonnaise, Chinese pork ribs char grilled with red chili, soy sauce and scallions (YUMMY), Cece Fritos which are pan fried chickpeas, lemon and crispy capers. We also had the Spatchcock grilled chicken and the vegetable spring rolls. We enjoy everything we ordered and WILL be back especially to enjoy the DJ!
Everyday, I see women and a few men spending well over $200 to cover their gray hair. While taking their money my coworkers are dying their hair gray, lilac and every color in between. I found 1 gray hair and cried. My mother made sure to point it out to me while telling me "nuh pluck um out." I found this article last week and had to share.
Check out some Celebs with gray hair before reading the article after the jump.

I went to a coworker's baby shower last weekend. When we got our swag bag I was told my bag was customized. I then pulled out the tube of New Buxom Big & Healthy Lip Polish in Princess; I laughed because I'm called Princess at work. When I looked at the box of the gloss, I noticed the chick looks Black and she's wearing what looks like a carnival costume. Customized alright! My friend works at Bare Escentuals in SF so in my own little big head, I've convinced my self that I somehow inspired this lip gloss. LOL

New Buxom Big & Healthy Lip Polish 

Color : Princess
Description : A shimmer pink-pearl luster
A Buxom babe is all about curves, tingles and attitude — and that includes the lips. Plump what you've got with our luscious polish, which naturally creates the look of fuller, more voluptuous lips. You'll know it's working when a tingly, cooling sensation rushes over you.

Lawd knows my lips doesn't  need any more plumping, curves or voluptousity but the tingly sensation I can get use to...
 You don't say good luck, you say don't give up... it's the fire. 
Let it burn

The release date (6/22) for The Roots' new album, How I Got Over, is rapidly approaching. Today, we're blessed with track 11 off the LP, "The Fire," featuring John Legend. We first got a taste of this jawn back in March when footage emerged of The Roots crew performing the song during the opening ceremonies of the Winter Olympics in Vancouver. Let "The Fire" burn up those speakers for now, and be on the lookout for the Rik Cordero directed video coming soon.
I like this one a lot!

This is the last installment for now. I'm anxiously awaiting Guerre's next list.
7 Deadly Sins.

... well o.k. they may not be deadly sins, but when it comes to style... they should be considered sins.

1. Wearing a suit with no pocket square.
Now, while many may consider this a minor infraction, I think that not wearing a pocket square is an insult to a suit. Take time out and notice how that little addition works wonders, and how the lack of one leaves a suit screaming for more. I firmly believe every man should sport a pocket square (with suit), and the safest bet is a plain white one. Folding a pocket square        (link courtesy of Sam Hober Custom Made Neckties)

2. Ill fitting anything.
This includes suits, jeans, shirts, and tees. One thing I have come to understand is that regardless to the cost, if the fit is not right - the look won't be right. It's better to wear something inexpensive that fits correctly, than something expensive that fits wrong. Wrong fit trumps bad quality.

3. Bad hygiene.
Putting a dress on a pig, wont make it a princess. Clean up before you 'dress up'. Now you may think this doesn't need to be stated, however ride the New York Subway or Paris Metro on a hot day, and you'll understand the importance of stressing this point.

4. Worn out shoes.
This may seem minor, but when it comes to style, nothing is minor (including this). A sharp dressed man, makes sure his shoes are well kept, and polished. Investing in a good pair of shoes is key, when the sole wears down, all you need to do is have them resoled. Add taps if they tend to wear quickly.

5. The look killers.
- A Tie that's too long - it draws the attention downward.
- Head phones wires - Gives off a messy look.
- Stuffed pockets - breaks the smooth lines in the clothing.
- Baseball cap / do rag and a suit - defeats the point of a suit.
- Cell phone on belt clip - unless you're working in the fields it looks too High School cool.

6. Ring tones.
I never understood the point of Ring tones (for anyone over 28). Hopefully someone can explain to me it's point, while letting me know why the vibrate function doesn't suffice.

7. Not knowing what works for you.
This is a hard one, but it's about being honest with yourself. Style is about expression of self, thus it should reflect your personality. The key is to know what works for you, and compliments your body - not what makes it reveal your short comings. Certain colors work best with certain people, and certain styles fit certain body types more so than others. If you like it, but it doesn't work for you -leave it alone, and like it on someone else. Once you've truly found your style, it will reveal itself in your Swagger.

Courtesy of Guerre 
New Soca by Claudette "CP" Peters. Still Jamming!! I likes and will definitely get me ready to play mas in Antigua.

I told you about my experience at FELA! a few months ago.  Well, you can enjoy the music without going to Broadway. Everyone can get their FELA! on with the new cast recording album, released this week. You can purchase the album here.

Backed by the irrepressibly funky Antibalas, FELA! The Original Broadway Cast Recording features the incomparable Sahr Ngaujah as Fela, Lilias White as Funmilayo (Fela’s mother), and Saycon Sengbloh as Sandra Izadore (Fela’s American girlfriend) singing all 16 of the Fela compositions that are performed on stage. This recording captures the electricity and joy that thousands have experienced at the Eugene O’Neill Theater every night since the play opened on November 23, 2009, and is not only a document of that experience, but also a musical statement in its own right.
Close you eyes and pretend you're there with the full length tracks below. My favs are #1, #4, #7, #8, #9, #11, #13 and #22.

FELA! Tony Nominations:
  • Best Musical
  • Best Book of a Musical: Jim Lewis & Bill T. Jones
  • Best Actor: Sahr Ngaujah
  • Best Featured Actress: Lillias White
  • Best Direction: Bill T. Jones
  • Best Choreography: Bill T. Jones
  • Best Orchestrations: Aaron Johnson
  • Best Scenic Design: Marina Draghici
  • Best Costume Design: Marina Draghici
  • Best Lighting Design: Robert Wierzel
  • Best Sound Design: Robert Kaplowitz

Cara, please go and and channel me :)

It would be nice to walk up in Walmart dressed like this. I can see those folks in their cut off sweat pants, XS wife beater and imitation Crocs looking at me like I'm crazy. LOL

Skirt, leggings and Top with gold button
Mercura Sunglasses for ORIETT DOMENECH

  Dress and swimsuit ORIETT DOMENECH
Mercura Sunglasses

Mercura Sunglasses for ORIETT DOMENECH

  Mercura Sunglasses for ORIETT DOMENECH

Love the sunglasses, skirt, leggings...ok  I love everything in the first pic. Peep the gloves-ish fingertip thingies. HOT! That bathing suit in the second pic is on FIRE!!! The sandals in the third pic by Giuseppe Zanotti are to die for. If I wore those to Walmart, someone would have to push me around in the cart :)

I never knew  frozen pancakes existed!!!??? I guess if frozen waffles are in my freezer right now pancake aren't a far cry. Who really buys frozen pancakes?? LOL
This list has to be one of my favorites.

The making of a gentleman.

How could I not help start your week with another list. Thus far I posted 36 Things every man should do before dying, and , 10 +1 Things to do/have (for the ladies) well today, it's about "The making of a gentleman".

Before we begin, let me say that the term gentleman has been overly used, misrepresented, misunderstood - I will not go to in depth on the subject at this time (that's a whole other book), however, I will state that if he/you are unable to check off most of the things on this list...hmmm...

1. On giving up the seat. Gentleman give up their seat to the elder and young children... not to the good looking lady, just because she's good looking (otherwise, you might as well never sit. Giving up the seat every time and for everyone doesn't make you a gentleman, it just makes you the guy with sore feet.)

2. On looking at women. A real gentleman doesn't look back after she passes. Look and learn to work your peripheral... but once she's out of your peripheral, let thoughts of her be out your mind.

3. On gossip. End it where it begins... if someone starts going down that path, interrupt and ask if what they are going to say will benefit either themselves, the person they are talking about, or yourself... if they say no, ask them what's the point.

4. On the quality of life. Gentlemen do not impose themselves on others, this means their music remains moderate, their boxers stay hidden, their hygiene unoffensive, and language appropriate

5. On greeting women. Now this is a tough one that I've been trying to master myself. Gentlemen should not be the first to approach a woman or even greet them. A woman should say hello first then he proceeds. On approaching a woman, the chap should only do so if she gives him an opening (i.e. a smile, eye contact).

6. On the shoes. Shoes must always be polished. Make sure those slanted heels are replaced and taps are added to them. Nothing kills a look more than a sharp dressed man with dirty or worn shoes.

7. On living life. A gentleman has an appreciation for life, he lives it fully understanding that everyday he has the opportunity to improve the world around him. He lives life with passion without caring to be a role model, but living consciously by example.

8. On penmanship. Learn to write and I don't mean just print.

9. On too much. Never be excessive - it's vulgar.

10. Understand elegance. Elegance is an attitude, It's about how you live both in the public eye and in the privacy of your home. Money doesn't buy elegance, it can only purchase items.

11. On making a person smile. This is one of the hidden gems of a gentleman. this is where the gent need not say a word, but simply senses the right time and acts on it without any motives other than simply nurturing or creating a smile. When that lady walks by and looks - smile and simply acknowledge her glance without a word or skipping a step... watch her light up. Even that chap you see who you know took time to present himself to the world...Acknowledge it with a simple nod of the head without skipping a beat. The 'little' things are never little.

12. On SMS. For starters, let's understand one thing - SMS stands for short message service. So, no conversations via text messages! Conversations should be had in person, CAPS somehow just don't express emotions as they should be expressed.

Courtesy of Guerre 
Dem gone guh change meh costume, WTH! Carnival Nationz has made some changes to 3 sections: Saltfish, Royal Jail and Sexy Marajhin. Here are the before and after.

Saltfish Before

Saltfish After

Royal Jail now has a waist belt... a necessary change I feel

Royal Jail Before

Royal Jail After

Sexy Marajhin Before

Sexy Marajhin After

I don't LOVE the changes they made to Saltfish. It's looks like an afterthought. I really liked the dimension/texture that's in the original head piece. Now the gray feathers look so drab.

Now that they've added a waist belt to Royal Jail, it looks so much better. I'm sure it will sell off now.
Sexy Marajhin...they got rid of the yellow feathers and added some trim to the bra. I don't remember there being  a FL for this section but take a look:


Idris Elba, aka King Dris who gained notoriety in the US playing Stringer Bell on HBO’s hit “The Wire” has a new video alongside 9th Wonder. Some comments floating around the net is that he is confused and he is a Londoner pretending to be Jamaican. Idris is of Ghanian and Sierra Leonean descent. He was probably surrounded by the huge Caribbean influence specifically Jamaican while growing up in England. Not to mentioned he did a good job in the Jamaican movie “One Love” starring Kymani Marley and Cherine Anderson.

Music lovers in New York, can look forward to this year’s Caribbean Music Festival free concert series, which will be held in Queen’s, New York, every Thursday from June 10 – July 8, 2010. The festival will feature musicians from a number of music genres including calypso, ska, jazz and reggae.

In Sex and the City 2″ Carrie wears an amazing turban. Turbans has popped up on several runways for many Resort and Fall/Winter 2010 collections. 
tur·ban [túrbən]

1. headdress: a man's headdress that consists of a long piece of fabric wrapped around the head or around a small cap, completely covering the hair, worn especially by some Sikhs and Muslims
2. woman's hat: a woman's hat that is similar in shape to a man's turban
Microsoft® Encarta® 2009. © 1993-2008 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.

Jean Paul Gaultier for his Fall 2010 collection presented African print Turbans

Temperley Fall 2010 collection gold lame turban

Charlotte Ronson Fall 2010

Yigal Azrouël Resort 2010

Chris Benz Resort 2010

For those of you less willing to commit to a truban you can try a headband+turban=Turband. Thanks to Gold Saturn, you can now experiment. They've created the part turban, part headband Turband — thick enough to resemble a real turban but thin enough to not envelope your entire head. 

Here are some other options: