In The Spotlight: Philly Blocks

Afternoon people! Hope all is well. Starting out the week with a spotlight on another young artist on the rise...

Juan Neal, aka Philly Blocks, grew in the 28th and Dixdale area of the West End of Louisville, Kentucky. This 21-year-old rapper claims that he stayed on a thin line between school and the streets. While females around his way were focused mainly on school and religion, a lot of the men, including his father, worried about the streets, and Philly took that on. “I stayed in school and played football, but that didn't stop me from hustling and running the streets,” Philly said.

After getting arrested on a gun charge at 17, Philly started writing and rapping while serving his time. Although he never really wanted to rap, people encouraged him to, and to never go back in the system, which he never did. “I started working on practice mixtapes and passing them out which built more confidence in doing music,” Philly says. After hearing some wack dance music on a trip to South Carolina, he concentrated on music even more, doing an open mic his first Saturday back, and got his own management team. Read more about Philly Blocks and listen to some of his music after the jump!


Happy Birthday Michael Jackson

Morning yall. Happy Sunday! I very rarely do a post on Sundays, but of course, I had to write today. Today, the late legend Michael Jackson would have turned 52. He passed away last year on June 25. In remembrance of him, I made a music playlist filled with his songs as well as the Jackson Five. Including "Lisa It's Your Birthday" from his appearance on the Simpsons haha my bestie got me hooked on that song! So listen and jam along!

Seriously, it's crazy that he's gone. And it's even crazier the stories that have come out since he passed. His children all out in the public, Papa Joe and some other people still after money, etc etc. But staying on the positive, Happy Birthday Michael! Your presence is greatly missed! Thank you for the contributions you made to the music industry and charities, and the impacts you have made on fans worldwide. Not too many artists have a worldwide fan base, not like him! RIP MJ!



Drake and Nicki Married?

Hahaha ok edit. It's a joke. I knew it probably was. But I mean, THINK. What if they ever did one day? Imagine Mrs. Onika Graham rocking a ring, walking down red carpets with Drake. Would be an interesting site. Back in my heyday, I might have killed Nicki LOL, but I have since moved on. So one day, maybe they might do it. After all Drake loves Nicki Minaj....he did admit it haha



Remembering Aaliyah (1979-2001)-9 Yr. Anniversary

Good morning people! Hope everything is good! For my workers, it's halfway through the week so keep pushing! :)

Today marks the 9th anniversary of the late singer Aaliyah Haughton. Aaliyah passed away at the young age of 22 at the height of her career after her plane crashed shortly after take off in the Bahamas. Aaliyah had just finished shooting her video for "Rock The Boat." The other passengers killed in the crash were Scott Gallin, Keith Wallace, Douglas Kratz, Eric Foreman, Gina Smith, Christopher Maldonado, the pilot L. Marael, and Anthony Dodd. It was a very sad and tragic accident.

She is definitely one of my favorite singers of all time. She had style and grace. Her songs were beautiful. She really did tell stories through her music, which is lacking in a good amount of today's music. Really sweet and elegant young woman. I told my Twitfam that God gained a musical angel on this day in 2001. While her family, friends, those she worked with, and fans across the world mourn her loss, everyone can take joy in knowing that even for a short while, she made an impact while she walked this earth. Info about memorials set and Aaliyah's MTV Diary after the jump!


Paula Cook Thinking About Going To Oprah

And the drama continues...I mean how could it not? With Fantasia opening up about her suicide attempt and the alleged affair with lover Antwaun Cook, of course people want to hear Paula's side. According to RadarOnline.com, Oprah herself has reached out to Paula to talk about this whole ordeal. And of course, Paula is considering it. She's also been approached by Mo'Nique for an appearance on The Mo'Nique Show, as well.

A source told the site, “There was also the chance for her to appear on a new reality show about spurned women, and she’s considering another option to write a book about the whole Fantasia saga. At the moment she is weighing up all these offers and is just taking time out to look after her sons. She has been allowing Antwaun to spend time with the boys although she is becoming more resigned to the fact that their marriage is definitely over now. Despite anything that Fantasia may say about Antwaun being separated from his wife when she started dating him, Paula firmly believes that she knowingly got involved with a married man.”

You know what, in all honesty, I know that people want to hear Paula's side, but I'm like, "Why?" Everyone already knows what it's gonna be. "Fantasia ruined my family. She has a sextape out. I can't believe this is happening. What about me?" It's going to be the same details we've been reading for weeks now. And now to me, it just seems like she's trying to make money off of it. A book AND a reality series? Come on now. Now, I'm not trying to make light out of this situation, because it definitely is heavy. However, I know that all of the blame is going to be directed at Fantasia. And all of it shouldn't be. I got more to say after the jump.

In The Spotlight: Kdeem

Morning yall. Got an artist on the rise to highlight. Thanks to Miss Tia for getting the story :)

Kadeem Dacres, also known as Kdeem, is an artist with tons of diversity from London, England. He moved to Atlanta, Georgia at the age of 11 where he met following artists Robb & Young Ceaz. Since the spring of 2009 he has released not one, but four mixtapes, Not 4 Purchase Vol. 1 & 2, Untitled, and Not 4 Pre-Purchase. He has made many beats for artists that are in his same bracket, including Robb, Yung Ceaz, Niko Trizz, Elgin Bridges, and many others. Kdeem has huge dreams, and to start pursuing his dreams, listening to his music will be greatly appreciated.

To download his newest single, Perfume, click here

Listen to his song, "I'm Single" after the jump.


True Love for True Blood Couple!

Good morning all! Happy Monday! I'm up early and ready to put in work on the blog today. First things first, a change in the music for this week. This week is dedicated to the late Aaliyah. This Wednesday will mark the 9th anniversary of her passing. She is one of my favorite singers, so I wanted to post some of my favorite songs by her (Videos and montages included in the iPod on the right if you want to take a look). So enjoy! RIP Babygirl...Will have an official post for her Wednesday.

I'm a day late on this post. Not working will make you sooooo lazy, I mean to tell yall! Ugh, so I'm kinda disappointed that I didn't put this up yesterday. But I had to do it! According to People, Anna Paquin and Stephen Moyer, who play the fairy-vampire couple (yeah, Sookie's a fairy haha) on HBO's True Blood, have officially tied the knot. The couple were married Saturday night in Malibu in front of family and friends. Guests included True Blood creator Alan Ball, costars Ryan Kwanten, Sam Trammell, Rutina Wesley and Carrie Preston as well as actor Elijah Wood. Anna and Stephen exchanged vows at sunset under a white tent at a beachside villa.

"It was a beautiful evening to get married and the sunset was gorgeous. Anna and Stephen seemed very excited to celebrate their wedding day," a source tells PEOPLE. Stephen proposed to Anna last August.

Awww....I love them! This has just been the summer for weddings hasn't it? If you watch the show, Anna and Stephen have amazing chemistry. It's nice to see them together on and off the show! Congrats guys and best wishes!



"Power (Remix)"-Kanye West feat. Jay-Z & Swizz Beatz (Song)

Afternoon lovelies, hope all is well. Ok, so today, I am introducing my first writer on the Spotlight team. Needed some help to give yall better posts. (Anybody else interested, email Brittany Shawnté at inthespotlight1@live.com.) And now....welcome Tia!

"No one man should have all that POWER"

Kanye West officially drops his remix to Power. The remix features his “big brother” Jay-Z, and producer Swizz Beatz. Vocals also include G.O.O.D. Music R&B artist, John Legend. This can really be the remix of the summer!! Download here.


Thanks Tia! Glad to see Kanye back for real. Definitely one of the top rappers we have! What do you guys think of the mix?


"Miss Me"-Drake feat. Lil Wayne (Official Video)

Well yall know the song, so watch the video! Just premiered tonight. I like this song a lot, but I want Drake to release "Fancy" already!!!!! That's the video I'm really ready for, but this one was ok. Just a bunch of performance shots, with the random dancer in there. And guess they shot Weezy's part before he went in. SMART! You know instead of having "FREE_____" shirts in your videos. Shoot them rapping before they go in if you're gonna do a video for the song. Lesson to the industry.



Spencer Pratt to Write Tell All (about Heidi!)

Afternoon yall...sorry about slacking off these past couple of days. Not having to get up for work has made me lazy lol but I'm getting back on track. Got a lot to do, not only for the blog, but also before I head back to B-more for school in a couple of weeks =/

So I read this story, and I laughed a bit. Spencer Pratt has told UsMagazine.com exclusively that he is writing a tell-all about his relationship with ex Heidi Montag, including stories about her troubled relationship with her mother Darlene.

"My last book, How to be Famous, didn't make the New York Times best-seller list because it was in the self-help section," Spencer said to the magazine. "This one is going to be totally different. I'm not holding anything back."

Ummm...Spencer maybe your last book didn't make the list because you're not like some A list celebrity who worked hard to get the status and could write a book like that. You're more like C list and that's simply because Heidi had you on The Hills in the boyfriend/husband role. Or maybe nobody wanted to read a book from you. BUT this next book may be an interesting read for us Hills fans. I can only imagine what this man will say. I doubt I will buy it, but it would be entertaining to read what Spencer has to say on the whole ordeal. Only a matter of time before Heidi comes out with her own I'm guessing. Anything to stay on the radar. For the umpteenth time though, I'm so glad they're getting divorced lol! Yeah, I said it! Yall are too. Well those of you who watched the show haha.



"Bottoms Up"-Trey Songz feat. Nicki Minaj (OFFICIAL VIDEO)

Hey hey yall. Here is the anticipated video for Trey Songz' "Bottoms Up" with Miss Nicki Minaj! It's the new single off Trey's upcoming album Passion, Pain and Pleasure that is set for release on September 14. If you pre-order the album now on iTunes, not only will you get the mp3 for "Bottoms Up" but you will also get three bonus tracks when the CD is officially ready for download on the release day! Check the video below!

Definitely a unique one for Trey. A lot of strobes, a lot of stumbling for Trey LOL It was about going out and drinking, so it was a little crazy. It wasn't like a clear story like other videos he's done, but it wasn't really supposed to be. It's just about a night out, getting drunk, having fun. So it was cool. Not my favorite video by him, but it's definitely a party record! Love this song. And of course, Nicki did Nicki, putting her flavor on it. Swear I like the girl more and more each day. What did you guys think of the video?



"Lucky"-Fantasia (Leaked Song)

Good morning! Shoutout to my workers, even though I'm officially done :) Hope everybody has a good week!

Well, I have a song for you guys. A leaked song by Miss Fantasia which speaks on a relationship with a married man. Uhhhhh...Fantasia this was a song better left unwritten. Love her dearly, but this is not a good look. AT ALL. Listen to "Lucky" below.




Hilary Duff Gets Married!

Hey yall, happy Sunday. Told you I would be more focused on the blog, so I'm gonna try to put up at least one post a day.

UsMagazine.com confirmed that Hilary Duff is officially hitched. The actress married her hockey player BF Mike Comrie, in a beautiful ceremoney at a $29 million estate near the San Ysidro Ranch in Montecito, Calif. on Saturday. Approximately 100 of the couple's closest family members and friends were in attendance.

Hilary wore a strapless Vera Wang gown with her hair in a bun and walked down the aisle, lined with candles and rose petals, with her mother, Susan, by her side. Her older sister, Haylie, served as maid of honor.

"It was one of the most beautiful weddings I've ever seen," a witness told Us of the pair's 20-minute ceremony. "Absolutely stunning. They thought of every last detail and it was an incredible sight."

Hilary and Mike have been dating for over two years, and got engaged in February. "He's a great guy," Hilary said then. "I've never met anyone who could say a bad word about him. He's generous, caring, funny. We just laugh our heads off, which I need in my life ... He's unique. I wouldn't want to be with someone who wasn't unique."

Awww...that's beautiful. I love hearing about two people in love that decide to make a full commitment to each other. Congrats guys :)



In The Spotlight: Smokey

Hey yall, hope all is well. Work is done, so now I can focus more on Spotlight. So for you this afternoon, I have another upcoming artist to highlight. Introducing...Smokey.

Born in NY, and raised in B-more, 18-year-old rapper Demitrius "Smokey" Stines is completely dedicated to his music. Smokey's first taste of rapping came from uncles who worked as DJs and brothers and cousins who were rapping. Eventually, Smokey got into it himself. Smokey decided to be a musician when he was 8. He wa listening to Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five. With the lyrics in front of him, Smokey figured out the breakdown of a song and ran with it. Since then, Smokey has been writing rhymes.

After graduating early Smokey made music his main priority. He started his own movement/label called DroBoy Entertainment. Originating in Dallas, the label has artists, promoters, models, etc; from the Carolinas, DMV (HEYYYYYY!!!!!), and New York.

Smokey says what makes his music different from other artists is his mindstate of it "You watch movies to see a story, you listen to music to hear a story," he says. He writes songs that have some kind of meaning or story at the end, unlike some of these other celebrity rappers. Could start dropping names, but I guess in my real career, I'm gonna have to start being neutral. Ugh. Anyways, Smokey is trying to follow the footsteps of artists such as Lil Wayne, Ludacris, or T.I. who started their own labels but started off as major artists. Right now, Smokey is working on 2 mixtapes and his upcoming album More Than Just A Rapper, so be on the lookout for that. Check out some of his music after the jump.


Lance Cade Passes Away

I don't profess to be a huge wrestling fan, so I don't really know much about wrestler Lance Cade (govt. name-Lance McNaught) at all. However, I felt that it was important to share for those of you all who do. According to Sports Entertainment Scoops,World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) has confirmed his passing through a statement.

“World Wrestling Entertainment was informed Friday morning by Lance McNaught’s father that he has passed away of apparent heart failure. WWE extends its deepest condolences to the McNaught family. Mr. McNaught was under contract from March 2003 to October 2008 and performed under the name 'Lance Cade.' He returned to FCW, WWE’s developmental territory, in September 2009, and was released in April 2010.”

He passed away at the age of 29, and leaves behind two young daughters Natallye and Laryssa. Really tragic for someone to leave this earth that young. Keep his family and friends, and the WWE family in your thoughts and prayers.


"Why Don't You Love Me (Dance Rmx)"-Beyoncé

Good morning yall! TGIF!!!! And it's my last day of work too?! Too happy right now! Plans for the weekend: SLEEP! Work has made me such a homebody LOL.

Beyoncé released the official dance remix to "Why Don't You Love Me?" and People has the first listen here! The original version was originally a bonus track on her 2008 album I Am...Sasha Fierce and the video was released in May.

Beyoncé said that B.B. Homemaker, the character she plays in the video, is not as edgy as Sasha Fierce but she can relate more to B.B. at this point in her life. "I've kind of been being a wife," she told People (She's been married to Jay-Z since April 2008). "And I figured it could be nice to kind of give a little wink towards the things that I've been doing at home, but making fun of it. I'm just kind of living my life, relaxing, and trying to enjoy [doing things] other than performing and music."

It's definitely the rave, Jersey Shore fist pump feel LOL which I'm starting to like a little bit. Has nice breakdown points too. I'm sure this will be playing in the clubs soon.



Beyoncé and the House of Deréon

Check out the pictures from Beyoncé's new campaign for the fall 2010 collection of Deréon. She tranformed into an edgy rockstar and killed in these pictures. I love Bey...probably will just look at the clothes in stores though. For a supposedly affordable line, Deréon is mad expensive! But it's cool that Bey has branched out beyond music. She has fashion, her new perfume, and her acting too, so it's definitely an understatement to say that she is THE TOTAL PACKAGE! Heard she was recording her new album too...can't wait for that to drop! Shoutout to The Beyoncé Network for this! Check more pics after the jump!


"See Me Now"-Kanye West feat. Beyoncé and Charlie Wilson (Song)

Kanye just dropped this today. The song features Miss Beyoncé and Charlie Wilson. And it's mad catchy! Completely different style from "Power." It's not going to be Kanye's next single, just something he let out for the summer. It should be though! I like it a lot! And of course Bey did her thing. I like Charlie on this too. LOL at the end. Kanye's a mess.

You can download it here.


"The Number Won"-Wale (VIDEO)

Ok, Wale is the love of my life in the music industry right now LOL, and he's from DMV, so I have to highlight him. Here's a video put together for a bit of "The Number Won" off his newest mixtape More About Nothing. It was shot outside of Commonwealth, a store in DC. So mad I couldn't go! The video's not much, but for me, it's good enough. Cuz I love him :)


Fantasia Overdose: My Take

Good morning people...hope everything is good with you. Half way through this week already!

Ok, so I thought I would give my take on the Fantasia overdose. For those of you who don't know, Fantasia was hospitalized in North Carolina on Monday after a medication overdose. "She took an overdose of aspirin and a sleep aid," her manager said in a statement to Access Hollywood. "Her injuries are not life threatening. She was dehydrated and exhausted at the time," the statement went on. "Fantasia is stable now. She will be released from the hospital soon."

Now, everyone knows about the love triangle with Fantasia, her lover Antwuan Cook, and Antwuan's wife Paula. Now Paula is supposed to suing Fantasia (which is apparently legal in their area) and going for custody of the kids, plus child and spousal support from Antwuan. Fantasia says she thought that Antwuan was legally separated. Paula calls her a homewrecker, talking about possible sextapes, la di dah. Real messy situation. And it's been reported that Fantasia took the medicine in the first place because of all this.


In The Spotlight: MARiE darapper

Hey guys, happy Monday! Like I told my Twitfam, I know it's Monday (blehhh) but it's another day we've been blessed to see. Somebody would kill to be in your shoes, so make the best of today and this week! LOL I guess I'm just mad happy cuz this is my last week of work for the summer! Chillin til I head back to Loyola on September 5 haha.

Anyways...back to the post. Here is another artist on the rise. I'm proud to present the first female artist that I have had the opportunity to interview: MARiE darapper. Originally from Detroit, MARiE originally got into started getting into music after she won a poetry contest in elementary school. "No one around me was a rapper so I found things to rap about which made me versatile like I am," MARiE said.


"Power"-Kanye West (OFFICIAL...90 SECOND CLIP LOL)

Ok...Kanye has been saying all week that his video wasn't a video. It was a painting. But umm...I thought he was speaking metaphorically. I was wrong LOL. This 90 second clip is legit a moving painting with Kanye standing at what seems to be the gates of heaven.

Looking at people's tweets on Spotlight's Twitter, this video might be a tad controversial for Kanye. It kinda makes it seem like he's some kind of god...but I get the concept. It's just...weird. You're expecting this grand video, or at least I was, and then you get this. I get the concept, but I think that many fans are kinda disappointed. We were expecting something epic. And I was kinda weirded out staring at Kanye's face for a minute and a half. What do you guys think about the "video?"



"I Love The Way You Lie"-Eminem feat. Rihanna (OFFICIAL VIDEO)

Glad to see Eminem back...Here he is with Rihanna with "I Love The Way You Lie" off his album Recovery...


Facebook Drama

Not really entertainment news, but I thought I would share anyway. Lady finds out about her husband having a second wife ON FACEBOOK! Drama...The husband and second wife denies it, and have taken the lady's kids away, going for main custody. The first four minutes tell the main story...

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy


Broken Grammy

LOL John Legend's nephew broke his Grammy!!!! John sent a pic to his followers and tweeted, Funny how many of y'all told me to beat his ass. Haha. It was truly an accident. I'm just gonna have to nephew-proof my apt a little better." LOL yeah u right! He's supposed to be getting a replacement. LOL but your Grammy though?! Let that have been me...



Wyclef Jean Will Officially Announce Presidency Run This Week

After much speculation, Wyclef Jean is going to announce his bid for president of Haiti this week, according to Time magazine. The country will vote on November 28 to elect a new leader to replace President Rene Preval, whose term ends in February.

"If I can't take five years out to serve my country as President, then everything I've been singing about, like equal rights, doesn't mean anything," Wyclef said in an interview with Time on Tuesday. "If not for the earthquake, I probably would have waited another 10 years before doing this," he continued. "The quake drove home to me that Haiti can't wait another 10 years for us to bring it into the 21st century."

Well, I'm glad. Wyclef is definitely passionate about his native country. He set up his Yele Haiti Foundation in 2005 to aid the people, which has been working to help people in their time of need after the earthquake hit. He's knowledgeable about what's going on there, and seems to be confident that he can make things better for the people. Analysts say he's a shoo-in to win. I think he will make a fine president. What do yall think?


Justin Bieber Biopic Coming

Morning guys...Like my Wale tracks today? Celebrating the release of his mixtape More About Nothing at noon today on RapRadar.com, I believe. Check him on Twitter.

Ok, to all my Justin Bieber fans out there, this news should make you happy. According to E! Online, Paramount Pictures has acquired the rights to Justin Bieber's life story and is going to make a full-length biopic starring Justin himself. And it's going to be in 3-D. Yes, Justin Bieber singing, dancing, whatever he does right in front of your face.

"Next Valentine's we r coming with a major 3D Movie telling the story with an Oscar winning director and also filmin the tour at MSG in NYC!!" Justin tweeted yesterday.

Wow, ok so "One Less Lonely Girl" is really the only song I listen to by him, but he's getting a lot of hype these days, especially with the younger ladies LOL So while I do not think that a biopic of him is absolutely necessary, there's a lot of money to be made behind it. Girls will go insane. I can see the lines now for tickets. And I can't ever knock the hustle. Plus it gives the fans a chance to feel more connected to him through knowing his story. Can't be mad. If B2K had've come out with a 3D biopic, I would've been first in line LOL.



"Can't Be Friends"-Trey Songz

There ain't no way I can be just friends with you.... Don't I know it? Bet everyone has that person who they at least partly wish they had never gotten caught up in, cuz now you can't just be friends. Sing Trey....Passion, Pain, and Pleasure, Trey's upcoming CD, is set for release on September 14th. And look out for the video to his single "Bottoms Up" with Nicki Minaj! Should be out soon.....


Lindsay Lohan Released From Jail

Hey yall...an update for you guys before the post. As you can see, or probably heard, I have put music up on the site. For those of you who voted for music autoplay on Spotlight, you won it by a good margin! Ok, so right now, there are only four songs in there LOL but that's simply because I'm trying to find the right player that will work at my job (damn govt security #$%$^%#$@!!! lol) and will autoplay and shuffle for you guys to enjoy! So bear with me...on to my next post!

After 13 hard days in the slammer LOL, Lindsay Lohan was discharged from jail at 1:35 A.M. this morning. Los Angeles sheriff's spokesman Steve Whitmore said that the actress was required to report directly to rehab. She will report to the UCLA Medical Center.

After she's finished with treatment, Lindsay will have to deal with random drug and alcohol testing until Aug. 2011, when her probation term ends. She is still allowed to take certain prescription medications.

Her mother Dina was very vocal during her daughter's time behind bars. "She doesn't have cell phone privileges, that's absurd," she said. "She doesn't even have a pillow to sleep on. I talk to her through glass. There's a phone and we put her on speaker but I can't even hug my daughter ... She's treated like a common criminal." Ummmm....well duh lady lol. She was in the law's hands. What do you expect?

Well, now she's out and I hope that short stint in jail makes her reevaluate her life choices. Jail time tends to do that sometimes...and of course, rehab will be great for her. Just hope she stays on the straight and narrow. If not, it will be back to the courtroom I'm sure...I hope that she gets back on track.


Alicia Keys and Swizz Beatz Married!

Morning guys...happy Monday! Hope everything is well with you all...

Ok, so I'm a bit late. Yall know I sleep on the weekend LOL but I would like to congratulate Miss Alicia Keys and Swizzy on their marriage Saturday! They married in a private home on the Mediterranean Sea. Celebs in the audience included Bono and Queen Latifah.

According to People, Alicia wore a Grecian-inspired Vera Wang dress and carried a bouquet of purple calla lilies. Swizz wore a Tom Ford tuxedo. The couple's friend Dr. Deepak Chopra presided over the nuptials.

Congratulations guys! Dag...this weekend was the weekend for weddings huh?



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