Fresh off her way-too-short appearance on Empire this week, Mary J. Blige drops a brand new video. On a serious tip though, Blige was highly underutilized on the FOX drama. All she did was duet with Terrence Howard on “Shake Down.” Next time, I want a showdown with Cookie Lyon (Taraji P. Henson).
“Doubt” is the latest single off her critically-acclaimed The London Sessions. The Ethan Lader-directed clip finds the 44-year-old singing her little heart out in an empty theater. But by the end, it’s a packed house. It’s a simple clip, but when you’re the Queen of hip-hop soul, bells and whistles aren’t needed. Plus, the simplistic nature is very fitting for her London Sessions era.
If the promise of Mary J. Blige wearing a platinum blond fro descending from the sky while wearing baby blue wings isn’t enough to entice people to the theaters, nothing will. That top right image is everything. Blige along with Jennifer Hudson star in a contemporary adaptation of Langston Hughes’ celebrated 1961 play, Black Nativity. The film is scheduled to hit theaters this holiday season in November.
I love me some J-Hud, but let’s face it. The 31-year-old Oscar winner shines brightest when her acting roles involve some singing. When left simply just to act, she’s a bit awkward, don’t you think? Thankfully, the Kasi Lemmons-directed musical features Hudson doing what she does best- getting down with her gospel bad self. She stars as a struggling mother living in Baltimore who sends her son to live with his grandparents played by Forest Whitaker and Angela Bassett in Harlem. The coming-of-age story also stars rapper Nas, Tyrese Gibson, Nasir Jones and Jacob Latimore. Check out the teaser trailer below.
Even though, I think airing two seasons of “The Voice” back-to-back for the 2012-2013 television season is a horrible, NBC is doing it anyway. No wonder they’re perpetually in fourth place among the big networks. They seriously need me on staff. I’ll whip them back into “Must See Television” shape. Think of me as the Asian Andy Cohen ;) Well enough of my daydreaming, let’s talk “The Voice”.
For Season 1, Sia, Monica, Reba McEntire and Adam Blackstone assisted the judges in mentoring the contestants. Last time around Christina Aguilera, Cee Lo Green, Adam Levine and Blake Shelton needed double the star power. Each judge called upon two of their famous friends to advise the singers. Kelly Clarkson & Miranda Lambert (Shelton), Alanis Morissette & Robin Thicke (Levine), Ne-Yo & Babyface (Green), and Lionel Richie & Jewel (Aguilera) were all “trusted advisers”. Find out who’s on tap for Season 3 below.
Words can’t even begin to describe how excited I was to check out this clip. When I heard the hit Broadway musical was being adapted for the silver screen, I was practically frothing at the mouth. A musical set to 80s rock music… what’s not there to love? Last week, I was fortunate enough to check out a touring production of “Rock of Ages” and while not the best stage production I’ve seen, it was certainly entertaining and provided a great soundtrack. With A-list stars attached to the film and Hollywood money funding the project, I can’t wait to see the big budget extravaganza.
Directed by Adam Shankman of “Hairspray” fame, “Rock of Ages” tells the story of small town girl Sherrie and city boy Drew, who meet on the Sunset Strip while pursuing their Hollywood dreams. Their rock ‘n’ roll romance is told through the heart-pounding hits of Def Leppard, Joan Jett, Journey, Foreigner, Bon Jovi, Night Ranger, REO Speedwagon, Pat Benatar, Twisted Sister, Poison, Whitesnake, and more. Everyone in the film from Tom Cruise, Catherine Zeta-Jones and Julianne Hough cover these iconic tracks. Luckily for us (mostly me), we’re treated to the first full-length performance from the film.
Mary J. Blige gets the honor of being the first one we get to see belt out the 80s rock music. Given she’s sold millions of records, it’s a wise choice to show off the Grammy award-winning singer first. Blige plays Justice Charlier, the owner of the strip joint, The Venus Club. After giving advice to one of her girls, Julianne Hough’s Sherrie, she belts out Journey’s “Any Way You Want It”. Watch Mary channel her inner rocker below.
If you asked what film, movie goers were looking most forward to in 2012, most would’ve probably either said “The Hunger Games”, “The Avengers”, or the final installment of “The Twilight” franchise. Not for me though. Instead, it’s all about the movie adaptation of the hit Broadway musical, “Rock of Ages“. The second I heard the film was greenlit, I began counting the days until it hit theaters. Why? I love me my musicals and 80s heavy metal rock. So win-win.
On the Broadway production, it was the music that was the star, but since the film has a stellar roster of talent, it’s about the cast. More importantly, who’s singing what, especially Tom Cruise. Since Mary J. Blige, Julianne Hough and former “American Idol” contestant Constantine Maroulis are all recording artists, hearing them isn’t as highly-anticipated, but for the former “Top Gun“, it’s a brand new world. Cruise is heavily featured on the soundtrack, singing classic tracks from Bon Jovi, Guns N Roses, and The Scorpions to name a few. Find out what everyone else is singing below, including Alec Baldwin, Russel Brand, Catherine Zeta Jones et al.
Last week, I wrote about the Burger King commercial starring Mary J. Blige that was taken down because it was creating quite a stir with people saying that the ad promoted a negative stereotype (aka African Americans love for chicken). Blige apologized to the upset African American community, saying “I agreed to be a part of a fun and creative campaign that was supposed to feature a dream sequence. Unfortunately, that’s not what was happening in that clip,” Blige told TMZ. “I understand my fans being upset by what they saw. But, if you’re a Mary fan, you have to know I would never allow an unfinished spot like the one you saw go out.”
As a side note, I saw Blige perform live at White Party in Palms Springs this past Saturday night and she KILLED it! She performed Chaka Khan’s “Ain’t Nobody,” “Just Fine,” “Family Affair,” “No More Drama,” and finished the set off with “Be Without You“. SO good.
Back to the BK issue, The Second City Network has put together a series of faux “leaked” unaired BK commericals that feature a Mary J. Blige look-a-like interupting several different scenes by saying, “What’s in the new crispy chicken wrap?!” I seriously die every time she says it. She then goes on to sing about the wrap, but Second City took the inappropriateness of the ads to another level with the scenes and the lyrics. It’s totally something SNL would do, being that it’s so funny but so wrong at the same time. Check it out below.
This past weekend, Tyrell and I ventured down south to take on Jeffrey Sanker’s 2012 White Party 3D in Palm Springs. It was our first time and we absolutely had a blast. With great music & performers, hot men, great venues, and beautiful weather, it was certainly a recipe for a weekend to be remembered.
We got to enjoy so many up & coming artists (which we’ve highlighted in a separate article), as well as big name artists that included Mary J. Blige, JoJo, Neon Hitch, Melanie Amaro, Nervo, Jessie and the Toy Boys, Jessica Sutta, and more. The White Carpet was hosted by the fabulous Lisa Vanderpump who was also crowned “The Queen Of White Party”.
In addition to the performers, we met so many other great people while we were there, including the sexy Rodney Santiago from The A-List New York, sexy model and Gay-Ville creator Eliad Cohen, and of course Jeffrey Sanker himself. At the Sunday T-Dance, I was caught off guard when we were all treated to a fireworks tribute to Whitney Houston, timed to her greatest hits. It was so well done and definitely gave me chills – I even shed a tear. We made a video of our experience and have also included our photos below. Hope you enjoy!
As a side note, a new Burger King commercial has come out that features the nine-time Grammy winnwer singing about Crispy Chicken Wraps. She sings it to the beat of her own song, “Don’t Mind,” from her latest album “My Life II…The Journey Continues.”
When asked what’s in the new wraps, Blige sings, “Crispy chicken, fresh lettuce, three cheeses, ranch dressing, wrapped up in a tasty flour tortilla.” A lot of people are surprised to see her peddling chicken, especially since some people believe that it feeds into a stereotype. That being said, Salma Hayek, David Beckham and Jay Leno are also featured in new Burger King commercials, and Sofia Vergara and Steven Tyler are also expected to each do one as well. Check out Blige’s commercial below.