Drake’s new music video “Nice for What” showcases influential women

Carlie Beard | Staff Writer

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Dahyo Coleman

In Drake’s previous studio album, More Life, he mentioned on the song “Do Not Disturb” that “I’ll be back in 2018 to give you the summary.”

 

With “God’s Plan” becoming Drake’s longest-leading No. 1 song on the Hot 100 Billboard chart and the recent release of “Nice for What,” it is clear that Drake is back from hibernation and ready to showcase what he has been working on.

 

The message behind “Nice for What” is encouraging a woman to live her life freely and to fulfill her dreams regardless of how a man may view her. In so many words, Drake says that a woman does not need a man to feel or be beautiful and she can achieve her own goals if she is willing to work for them.

 

In the new hit, Drake says, “You’ve been inside, know you like to lay low, I’ve been peepin’ what you bringin’ to the table. / Workin’ hard, girl, everything paid for.” In this verse, Drake acknowledges the girl’s effort and notices qualities about her that make her special.

 

The Toronto native is known for having songs that uplift women. In his single “Fancy” ft. rapper T.I. and Swizz Beatz, Drake says, “Time heals all and heels hurt to walk in, But they go with the clutch that you carry your lip gloss in. / And look, I really think that nobody does it better, I love the way you put it together.”

 

Many have criticized Drake for being “too soft” or “emotional.” However, he seems to know how to show the ladies love.

 

“Most rappers in today’s music industry exploit women and degrade them,” said Kayla Evans, a Hampton sophomore sports management major from Rochester, New York. “It’s good to see Drake take a different approach and show off influential women while doing so.”

 

“Nice for What” is on a whole new level. Drake empowers women in this song and features different influential women in the new video, which broke the internet. Some of these strong women include actresses Tracee Ellis Ross, Yara Shahidi, Issa Rae, Tiffany Haddish, professional ballet dancer Misty Copeland and Jourdan Dunn.

 

Media plays a huge role in today’s society, especially for young girls. With so many influential women in the video, many young girls can be inspired to be confident in their skin and love who they are.

 

The video is simple and modern. All of the women are presented as powerful, poised and strong. It doesn’t portray women in the negative light viewers are used to seeing in rap music videos.

 

With all the recent news regarding the #MeToo movement and the sexism that women face in the entertainment industry, this song was released at the perfect time.

 

So what does the phrase “Nice for What” mean? Drake explains that women don’t have to be nice to guys who do not deserve them or treat them right. Drake is an influential man, and with a hit like this on his hands, he encourages women to hold themselves to the highest standard.

 

#WhoBitBeyoncé: A breakdown of Tiffany Haddish and Beyoncé’s relationship

Carlie Beard | Staff Writer

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Dahyo Coleman

#WhoBitBeyoncé exploded on social media after comedian and actress Tiffany Haddish dished more news about mega star Beyoncé. Haddish told GQ Magazine that, “There was this actress [at the party], that’s just, like, doing the mostest.”

One of the most things she did? “She bit Beyoncé in the face.”

Haddish was shocked and asked Beyoncé about the encounter. Haddish told GQ that Beyoncé said she was bitten, and that the actress who did it was on drugs. Haddish wanted to confront the actress for doing so. However, Beyoncé calmed her down, Haddish asked to take a picture, and Beyoncé politely accepted.

Haddish posted this selfie on Instagram with the caption, “@beyonce was telling me that my wig was slipping….But for real she told me to have fun and I DID!”

The Girls Trip star later did an interview with TV One on the network’s UNCENSORED show. Haddish revealed that while at the party, Beyoncé looked sideways at an actress because she was rubbing on her husband, JAY-Z. When Haddish was asked who this unknown person was, she declined.

Shortly after, Beyoncé was featured in new song produced by DJ Khaled called “Top Off.” The song also featured rappers Future and JAY-Z. In the song Beyoncé says, “If you want to party with the queen you are going to have to sign a non-disclosure,” meaning if you want to party with Beyoncé then you need to sign a form agreeing not to say anything about what occurs behind the scenes. Beyoncé even takes it a step further by saying Haddish’s name shortly after saying that phrase.

Beyoncé is known for addressing her issues in her music. In 2014, when her husband and sister Solange got into an argument on the elevator, she said on “Flawless (Remix),” “Of course sometimes [things] go down when [there is] a billion dollars on an elevator.”

Beyoncé definitely knows how to turn her problems into profit, and Haddish was thrilled at the fact that she was mentioned in Beyoncé verse. On the Grammy Awards show red carpet, she told the interviewer that, “I’ve made it. When Beyoncé puts your name in a song, you are on.”

A recap of New York Fashion Week

Carlie Beard | Staff Writer

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Dahyo Coleman

The most anticipated week in fashion has finally arrived: New York Fashion Week. Every year, representatives from various blogs, media outlets and magazines cover designers who raised the bar and those who fell short.

When NYFW comes around, tons of celebrities flock. Many fashionable celebs were present, and some were even featured in the shows. A$AP Rocky, Michael B. Jordan, Selena Gomez, Cardi B and Lil Kim were photographed at the Marc Jacobs show. Cardi B also was seen with Anna Wintour, fashion icon and editor-in-chief of Vogue Magazine.

The View talk show host Whoopi Goldberg also attended the festivities. Goldberg was spotted sitting in the front row at the Christian Siriano show, as he celebrated his brand’s 10th anniversary.

According to Sara Ziff, founder of Model Alliance, NYFW models had access to backstage dressing rooms this year. This was the first time NYFW models had this opportunity, as they usually have little to no privacy while getting changed backstage. This was a major step toward preventing potential incidents of sexual assault and toward making models feel more comfortable.

Jeremy Scott, known as the “people’s designer,” included vibrant colors in his pieces. Scott continuously demonstrates his love for color and creative color blocking techniques each year.

The models for designer Phillip Plein’s show walked in a winter blizzard scenery. One model came out of a spaceship-like object and walked the runway with a life-size robot. The Plein show included Christian Combs as a model, along with other recognizable faces in the fashion industry.  Needless to say, Plein took New York Fashion week by storm.

Despite their hits, the Grammys were a miss for some major artists

Carlie Beard | Staff Writer

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Dahyo Coleman

The biggest night in the music industry was a disappointing one for some fans.

To the surprise of many, the artist with the most recognized album of the year didn’t take home any Grammys at the 60th annual awards show.

Jay-Z, a 21-Grammy-award-winning artist, did not win anything for what some may call his most controversial album, 4:44. In his most personal project to date, Jay-Z opened up about his infidelity in his 10-year marriage to music icon Beyoncé Knowles-Carter.

However, their 6-year-old daughter, Blue Ivy, was there to steal the show as she sat in the middle of her two parents. Queen Bey was photographed holding fruit snacks and a juice box for her firstborn while in the front row at the awards show.

Not as many people were watching at home this year. There was a 24 percent ratings drop, according to The New York Times.

“The Grammys just didn’t live up to the hype it usually does,” Hampton University I.T. analyst Carl Brown said. “I felt some performances were great, but the award show lacked diversity and wasn’t that enjoyable. I don’t think that Alessia Cara should’ve won Best New Artist when up against new artist SZA.”

SZA was nominated for three Grammys. Despite owning the summer of 2017 with radio hits such as “The Weekend” and “Love Galore,” featuring Travis Scott, she shockingly took home none.

Bruno Mars, on the other hand, had a huge night, becoming only the 10th artist to sweep the major awards – album, record and song of the year.

Kendrick Lamar was among the winning crowd as well, taking home five awards after seven nominations.

Although this year’s show may not have gone as expected, there is always a chance for recovery at next year’s Grammy Awards.

 

 

Marvel’s Black Panther takes the box office by storm

Carlie Beard | Staff Writer

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Marvel Studios

Chadwick Boseman, the main character in Black Panther, is starring in the most anticipated film for 2018. The film is set to hit theaters soon, and audiences have been ready for it since the trailer was released in the summer of 2017.

Due to the hype surrounding the film, the tickets for its showings were released almost a month in advance and sold out within 24 hours. Black Panther is said to be the best-selling movie when it comes to presales for any Marvel Cinematic Universe film.

Even Academy Award-winning actress Lupita Nyong’o, who is a part of the film’s cast, couldn’t get a ticket for the premiere of the movie when she tried to purchase one. Nyong’o took to Twitter and posted a video about her experience, saying, “I kid you not…I was trying to purchase tickets, and they [were] sold out. Sold out!”

Yikes! If Nyong’o can’t get a ticket, then who will? Luckily, HU students have a chance to win tickets to see the film. The African Student Association is having a Black Panther movie ticket raffle. The organization is raffling off two tickets to see Black Panther on opening night. The tickets are $1 each, and the sale ends on Feb. 15, so you don’t want to miss out.

The Black Panther was introduced more than 50 years ago after being featured in a Marvel comic book. He made his movie debut in Captain America: Civil War and now finally has his own movie.

The film is set in Wakanda, which is located in northeastern Africa. Based on the vibrant clothing choices and tribal face paint, the film seems to be influenced by African culture.

The movie also hints at a historical reference. Black Panther’s advertisement poster is a recreation of a picture of former Black Panther Party co-founder Huey P. Newton.

The star-studded cast includes Forest Whitaker, Michael B. Jordan, Angela Bassett and Get Out star Daniel Kaluuya, to name a few.

Black Panther is highly anticipated because Marvel has never had a black character star in their own film. The release of this movie signifies a step toward more diversity and African-American representation in the movie industry. Black Panther will open in theaters Friday, Feb. 16.

The 2017 Soul Train Awards impressed once again

Carlie Beard | Staff Writer

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The annual Soul Train Awards was nothing short of soulful.

Singer-songwriter Erykah Badu hosted the show for the third time as it aired Nov. 26.

Many special guests were in attendance, including Tank, Method Man, Keyshia Cole and Ledisi.

R&B divas Fantasia and Faith Evans went head to head in a soul cypher that also featured Mali Music and Bilal.

The Soul Cypher is something newly added to The Soul Train, with its inspiration stemming from the BET Hip Hop Awards.

With performances from the top R&B artists in the music industry, this awards show was not one to miss.

The legendary Toni Braxton hit the stage with her sister, Tamar Braxton. Toni Braxton also took home the most eminent award of the night, the Soul Train Legend Award.

Tamar Braxton went to Instagram to congratulate her big sister, saying, “My sis, how could any other person EVER be more proud!! @tonibraxton -Williams u are THE LIVING LEGEND! Period!”

The “He Wasn’t Man Enough” singer was photographed sitting next to famous Cash Money Records rapper/producer Bryan “Birdman” Williams, at the awards show, who is rumored to be her longtime partner, according to VH1.com.

She also was photographed receiving her award with a ring on her left hand, stimulating fans’ ideas that Braxton might be making a big announcement in the near future.

Bruno Mars stole the show, winning a total of five awards for Best R&B/Soul Male Artist, Album/Mixtape of the Year, Song of the Year and Best Dance Performance.

He also took home the award for Best Video of the Year.

Even though Mars was up against tons of great artists for these awards, there is no doubt that he deserved every single one he received. From his smooth dance moves to his voice, he is unforgettable.

Solange was also nominated for several awards.

Although Solange only took one award away from this show, she is definitely proving why she deserves “A Seat at the Table.”

One of the most memorable moments from the awards show was when Erykah Badu paid homage to NFL player Colin Kaepernick, an activist for bringing awareness to police brutality.

Badu used The Soul Train Awards as an opportunity to salute Kaepernick by kneeling on one knee.

For information about the awards show, visit BET.com.

MoThoro drops his second album, ThoroLyfe: Execution

Carlie Beard | Staff Writer

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Morris Taylor

Rapper MoThoro, a Los Angeles native, has recently dropped his sophomore album titled ThoroLyfe: Execution. 

Along with being a rapper, Morris Taylor, also known as Mo, is a fourth-year, five-year MBA major at Hampton University. He balances being both a full-time student and rapper in the industry. Mo shares a record label called “LFTFLD” with his long time childhood friend Rasul Shabazz, who is also a rapper.

ThoroLyfe: Execution has a total of 12 songs and took just shy of four months to complete. Artists such as Mare and Kai Ca$h the rapper, who are both HU students, feature on this album.

To kick off the release of his new project, Mo threw a listening party the night before his album was officially released. Throughout the listening party, guests were able to hear his new project and helped Mo celebrate the completion of the second installment to the ThoroLyfe series.

When it comes to his motivation for entering the music industry, Mo is inspired by two people: his father and rapper Kendrick Lamar. Growing up, Mo witnessed his father being an underground rapper and was exposed to hip-hop music pretty early.

Mo reminisces on a time he saw one of his favorite rappers, Kendrick Lamar, passing out CDs on the streets of L.A. when Kendrick was still an underground rapper. This helped him understand the grind that goes into the music industry.

He has gained more knowledge and experience with the rap game now that he is dropping another album. However, he didn’t start this way.

Mo began by rapping nursery rhymes in his school’s talent show. When he noticed the great response from the crowd, he knew he had a chance in the rap industry. In 10th grade, he started recording songs in his room and posting them on WorldStarHipHop’s site, receiving 100K views.

He has now branched far away from nursery rhymes with new songs such as the crowd favorite “Be About It.” When asked what his favorite song from the album is, he responded, “Choosing one song is like choosing your favorite kid; it’s difficult. I really like “Be About It” and I think the ladies are going to like it, too, because it’s relatable.”

Let’s get into the album cover.  The cover art is not reggae related; however, green, yellow and red are colors that represent the Los Angeles city flag. It was only right that he paid homage to his hometown.

In reference to the significance of the “777” on the cover of the album, Mo stated that, “Seven is the number of completeness and perfection. My name, ‘MoThoro’ [is a play on the word] ‘thorough,’ [which] means ‘complete or to your best ability.’ I feel like the number ‘seven’ represents me as an artist.”

Mo mentioned that on this project, he challenged himself by stepping out of his comfort zone and singing more. He also was able to produce majority of the tracks on his album by himself.

So, what should fans expect next from MoThoro? He plans to continue working in the studio and to promote the album even more. Mo and Kai Ca$h are working on a project together, so stay tuned.

ThoroLyfe: Execution is available on iTunes, Spotify, SoundCloud, Tidal, Google Play and Amazon. You can also access MoThoro’s new album by scanning the QR reader below using the QR Reader app on your iPhone.

Justin Timberlake 2018 Super Bowl Performance: Previous Performances he’ll have to top

Carlie Beard | Staff Writer

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Photo from the official Pepsi Twitter page 

Justin Timberlake is unquestionably one of the biggest artists of this generation. From hit songs like “Cry Me a River” to more sophisticated singles like “Suit and Tie,” he definitely knows how to be versatile and remain true to himself while doing so. The “Sexy Back” singer is, in fact, back, and will be performing at the 2018 Super Bowl Halftime Show.

He took to Twitter to announce the big news after posting a comical video with friend Jimmy Fallon. Along with the video Justin tweeted, “I DO have the time. Half the time…”

Pepsi, a huge sponsor for the Super Bowl, also took to twitter to celebrate with the superstar by writing, “It’s official: @jtimberlake is taking the #PepsiHalftime stage at #SBLII Tune into #SNF tonight for the full scoop & we’ll see you on Feb 4!”

This isn’t JT’s first Halftime Show performance, however. The last time he headlined the show was with Janet Jackson in 2004. The two put on a jaw-dropping performance with an unforgettable wardrobe malfunction…Yikes!

Any who, Justin is back and ready to redeem his name.

Don’t think the redemption will be easy. Timberlake has some competition to top, such as previous Super Bowl Halftime Show veterans Lady GaGa, Britney Spears, Bruno Mars and Madonna.

Beyoncé hit the stage in 2013. The highlight of Queen Bey’s performance was when she reunited with one of the most popular girl groups, Destiny’s Child. Michelle Williams and Kelly Rowland joined Bey in performing some of their greatest hits. Will JT bring out his famous boy band, NSYNC, for a reunion at the halftime show?

Let’s not forget when Lady GaGa flew from the sky in her halftime performance. Remember when Katy Perry performed and her background dancer dressed in a shark costume became an Internet sensation overnight? What about when the legendary Michael Jackson took the stage back in 1993 for Super Bowl XXVII? With his smooth dance moves and unmatchable talent, Jackson instantly set the standard for future halftime performances to come.

Hopefully, Justin has learned a few pointers from the King of Pop.

The Super Bowl Halftime performance is one of the most highly anticipated shows that takes place every year. The show can make or break an artist. Tune in on February 4th, 2018 to see what Justin Timberlake has in store.

 

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Eminem’s the talk of the BET Hip Hop Awards

Carlie Beard | Staff Writer

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Courtesy of Carlie Beard

This year’s BET Hip Hop Awards were filled with unexpected twists and turns that kept viewers’ eyes glued to their TV screens.

DJ Khaled, one of the most respected DJs in hip-hop, hosted the show. He brought along his 11-month-old son, Asahd Khaled, who also happens to be the executive producer of his latest project, “Grateful.” Nicole Tuck, his partner and mother of his son, was also present at the awards to support Khaled.

The Miami native was excited to host the awards show because the event took place in his hometown at Fillmore Jackie Gleason Theater. DJ Khaled won the awards for MVP of the Year and also DJ of the Year.

From the cyphers to the performances, hip-hop’s greatest were in attendance, including stars such as Gucci Mane, Rick Ross, Trina, T-Pain and Yo Gotti. Some rookies were also present, such as rappers Dave East, Playboi Carti, Tee Grizzley and Cardi B. Cardi B was there to collect a plethora of awards. The “Bodak Yellow” rapper took home four awards for the night, including the award for Hustler of the Year.

Rap group Migos performed their latest single, “Too Hotty.” Cardi B, Flo Rida, Gucci Mane, Yo Gotti and others hit the stage as well.

Now to the crowd favorite: the cyphers. The cyphers this year were in groups, as usual. They featured rappers like Fat Joe, Tee Grizzley, Belly and Zoey Dollars. There was even a cypher that featured only female rappers, known as “Femcees.”

The moment that had everyone talking was Eminem’s cypher. During his cypher, Eminem called out President Donald Trump for his lack of concern when discussing issues the U.S. faces, such as gun control and Colin Kaepernick’s national anthem protest. Eminem also addressed his fans by saying, “And any fan of mine who’s a supporter of his, I’m drawing in the sand a line, [you’re] either for or against.”

Hampton senior sports management major Kris Johnson-Anderson, who is from Atlanta, offered his thoughts about Eminem.

“His performance was very relatable to what’s going on in society,” Johnson-Anderson said. “[It] brought awareness to a nonprofit organization, the NFL, and how it is constantly making money off of a controversy such as the Colin Kaepernick protest. It was significant that Eminem brought attention to immigration and health care in America.”

Johnson-Anderson added, “Although, it is important that we discuss topics [like] police brutality and racism in our country, we must also place more emphasis on what is occurring in and around our country. For example, a hurricane relief effort for Puerto Rico or the fires that are killing people and leaving some missing in California.”

Kendrick Lamar ended the awards ceremony by taking home three awards. He also won the most anticipated award for Album of the Year. Other artists nominated for the award included DJ Khaled, Future, J. Cole, and Jay-Z.

Recaps of the best moments from the show are available on BET.com.

 

Kardashians and Jenners keep delivering surprises

Carlie Beard | Staff Writer

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Courtesy of Carlie Beard

The baby of the Kardashian-Jenner family is having a baby?

According to a TMZ report, reality TV star Kylie Jenner is expecting a child with her
boyfriend, rapper Travis Scott. The couple has been in the spotlight for the past year on multiple occasions, from getting matching butterfly tattoos to buying each other expensive gifts.

Shortly after rumors of Jenner and rapper Tyga breaking up, she often was spotted with
Scott. The makeup guru was criticized for jumping from one relationship to the next.
Insider.com stated that Jenner is either four or five months along and that it could
possibly be a girl. Recently, though, Jenner posted a picture with her best friend, Jordyn Woods.

In the photo, Jenner was slightly showing her slim stomach, which made people question
whether or not the pregnancy reports are true.

According to OK Magazine, the couple did not plan this pregnancy, if she is, in fact,
pregnant. Many people who constantly keep up with the Kardashians know that this family is known for what some critics refer to as “publicity stunts.”

Some found it suspicious that this news went viral right before the “Keeping up with the Kardashian 10 th Anniversary Special” aired. Was this another one of famous “mom-ager” Kris Jenner’s stunts, or was it one heck of a coincidence?

When Ryan Seacrest, executive producer of KUWTK reached out to Kris Jenner to
find out if the story was true, she replied with, “Kylie’s not confirming anything.”

As if these pregnancy rumors were not shocking enough, news spread just days after
about Khloé Kardashian. It was reported by PopSugar.com that she will be expecting a child with boyfriend Tristan Thompson, a power forward for the Cleveland Cavaliers. Kardashian is divorced from former NBA player Lamar Odom.

To top it off, Kim Kardashian-West announced she and her husband of three years,
Kanye West, will be expecting a baby via surrogate. Kardashian-West has had previous issues with infertility and has even discussed the surrogate possibility on the show.

Breeon Buchanan, a Hampton University senior journalism and communications major
from Philadelphia, said the family is “doing the most,” and that it “is suspicious [that] all three pregnancies occurred around the same time.”

With three possible new additions to the family, who knows what to expect next from the
Kardashian-Jenners?