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Backstage

#WatchReadListen: Just Whitney

Pop icon Whitney Houston may have been laid to rest but for those who loved her- and her music, the pain remains fresh. Some still cannot believe the superstar has passed.

Read:

I found this piece and felt i should recommend it for those still trying to make sense out of her death. Touching stuff.

Watch:

Since her passing,i have watched all 3 of her movies at least once but i’d recommend a repeat viewing of ‘The Bodyguard.’ It highlights Whitney at her peak- untouchable, magnificent, majestic.

Listen:

Where do we start from? The Hits were numerous and they kept coming. However,i reckon her greatest hits CD is a good place to start.

Rest in peace Nippy.

#WatchReadListen- Bashorun Gaa, Lady Gaga and Rooney Mara

Hello there.

I am kickstarting a periodic list of three random things you should be watching, reading and listening to, from the endless sea of information out there that is popular culture- just so you don’t carry last.

Watch: Rooney Mara in Girl with the dragon tattoo

Rooney Mara is a revelation in David Fincher’s adaptation of the popular novel written by Steig Larsson. Despite the fact that her Lisbeth Salander had been played effectively and not too long ago by Swedish actress Nooni Rapace, Mara, a virtual unknown makes the role hers and is compulsively watchable.

She will not win the trophy for best actress come Oscar night, but her nomination is reward enough.

Read: Lady Gaga’s Vanity Fair cover interview.

Vanity Fair magazine’s January issue has the mother monster on the cover and in a revealing interview with Lisa Robinson, she exposes a rare and vulnerable side. My favourite quote is when she says, ”I had a man once say to me, ‘You will die alone in a house bigger than you know, with all your money and hit records, and you will die alone.”’

Seems like the rich also cry,

Listen: 9ice’s Bashorun Gaa

It is early days yet but 9ice’s Bashorun Gaa is proving to be the must have album of the year (read our review here) It starts brilliantly and zooms to a clean finish. Every track is a potential favourite and i cannot even begin to pick my faves. Indulge your ears now, they deserve it.

 

#FuelSubsidyRemoval:The Devil wears Ankara

Forget Meryl Streep. Forget Anna Wintour.

We’ve got our own devil here- and she rocks those ankara prints.

I understand the Co-ordinating Minister of the economy has refuted reports of her threatening to resign from President Goodluck Jonathan’s cabinet should he bow to pressure and rescind his decision on the fuel subsidy removal.

We now know she was falsely accused but I just could not resit taking this cheap shot. It’s my blog after all and let’s face it, all is fair in love and war. And we are at war.

Imagine a Nigeria where a serving minister could get away with such. Thankfully we are past that stage.

I think.

For no one man should have that much power. No matter how noble and well -intentioned.

It is the recipe for disatser

The four great albums of 2011

Beautiful Noise- Timi Dakolo

Black Chiffon- Yinka Davies

Supersun- Bez

Yes I am- Etcetera

2011 will be remembered as the year Yinka Davies finally dropped an album, as did Timi Dakolo and they were both worth the wait. Etcetera returned with Yes I Am and proved that his talent is superior. Bez was the new guy reaching for the stratosphere, and he showed he was prepared to put in the work required too.

The foursome made the best discs of the year. Pure, undiluted, exhilarating music that reminded us of what we had temporarily forgotten, the power of true talent, channeled properly. Of course they all paid the price for being so goddamn arty. None of them approached the commercial success of say, a Wizkid debut album. But these are the songs that will resonate long after this time.

And for you dear reader, to go through the year without owning at least one of these albums, now that would be the real tragedy.

If you expected Wizkid’s Superstar to be on this list, perfectly understandable but trippy autotune-heavy pop music ain’t really my thing. P-square’s Invasion started well but about four songs in, degenerated into senseless drivel and Ice Prince? Methinks enough has been said already.

The year may be over but do yourselves a favour and (like our home video brothers always scream), GRAB A COPY NOW.

Not like the movies: The Katy Perry and Russel Brand split

If it’s not like the movies

That’s how it should be

When he’s the one, i’ll come undone

And my world will stop spinning

And that’s just the beginning

So Katy Perry sings in the chorus of the song, Not like the movies which appears in her platinum selling Teenage Dream album. The slow, wistful number tells of a girl who insists on finding true love exactly the way it happens in the movies: you know the feet-popping, thunder-clapping, ever-ever- after kind of love that Hollywood (and Nollywood) sells to us on a daily basis. The poor child even discards potential suitors simply because the ring did not fit. You know when you know, she insists. Well I don’t know.

Poor Katy, you’d think that after kissing a girl and liking it, she’d be more sensible, more realistic but no, she insisted on trying. She met the Englishman Russel Brand, a comedian and actor and fell hopelessly in love.He loved her right back, he claimed but some folks insisted she was just his ticket to conquering America. Again, I don’t know.

What i do know is what they both presented to us, the gaping public. The public declarations of love, the barf- inducing display of affection, an over the top wedding ceremony in far away India and the fleeting appearance of her name on his contact list as he scrolled down his phone in the movie, Arthur. And not forgetting her Grammy Awards ‘special’ where she performed Not like the movies,(surprise) with slide shows of their fabulous wedding (complete with a live elephant) playing in the background. How sweet.

But it wasn’t like the movies, not really. Fourteen months after, (an eternity by Hollywood standards), especially in these days of unions lasting 72days(#thankyouverymuch Kim Kardashian), they were spending most of the xmas holidays separately and were both spotted without their wedding rings, prompting rumors of a split.

The rumors were confirmed last night when Mr Brand filed for divorce, citing the much abused ‘Irreconcilable differences’- which in reality may mean anything from infidelity to I-can’t-stand-your-sorry-ass-anymore. Not exactly the plot for a Julia Roberts movie.

In the end, it wasn’t like the movie Katy Perry expected but it was still like a movie in some ways. Cinematic and dramatic, but without the perfect ending. Just like that tv movie starring Kim Kardashian.

Oh! wait, that wasn’t a movie? Yes i recall, it was reality. Reality TV.

Enough said.

Glee + Adele = Great music

I love Glee just as much as the next person. I realise this is a delicate admission to be making these days considering the direction the show has been taking lately. Too gay for comfort, a friend of mine summed it up and yes I quite agree.

But for me, Glee has always been about the music. Yes they preach equality, acceptance and self love but there are other shows that do that too. The acting is good, the plot is interesting but none of their stuff is exactly ground breaking. They had me at the pilot episode when they began their definitive version of Journey’s much-covered ‘Don’t stop believing’ and I’ve been hooked ever since.

I haven’t been following it of recent but I stumbled on this episode from season 3 where they Amber Riley(Mercedes) and Naya Rivera(Santana) led a medley of Adele’s ‘Someone like you’ and ‘Rumor has it’.

Adele is not the easiest artiste to cover but I think both girls nailed it here. The show’s anointed best vocalist, Rachel(Lea Michelle) had previously fumbled ‘Rolling in the deep’ and guest star Gwyneth Paltrow did an ordinary ‘Turning tables’. Adele’s best music is never ordinary so it was a thing of joy to discover this performance.

I still think Naya Rivera is terrific, a good actor as she is a singer. perhaps she should be given more screen time now that everybody in the world knows Rachel (Michelle) can sing. Spread the love around some, don’t you think?

Anyway watch here:

 

 

You can’t reason with a Nigerian Policeman

I have had cause to be chewed out by my boss for coming late for a meeting (he says I was 40mins late but I can swear it was more like 25mins). Still I was late and darrisit. I’d made a vow never to be late again, at least for a meet with the boss man but as they say, Man proposes, …

It was a fine Sunday afternoon. I left home an hour earlier just to meet up (aren’t you proud of me) and got to CMS quite early. I then boarded a bus heading to Barbeach/Eko hotel (don’t judge me these are lean times.)

The driver hiked the price by #20 but I did not mind and promptly paid my fare. Not so for two stubborn dudes at the backseat who insisted on paying the standard fare. I should have spotted the first signs of trouble there.

Right in front of Eko Hotels, the two unrulies attempted alighting but the conductor was having none of them. The driver stepped down and joined the commotion and soon it was a free for all, right there on the main road. And all for #40.

Almost immediately, a police van came swooping down on us and in a blink, two policemen brandishing weapons ordered all of us back into the bus. All our pleas of innocence fell on deaf ears. I shouted, screamed, threatened and even begged to be let off and they shouted, screamed and threatened me right back. I was just an innocent bystander who was late for a meet with a demanding boss (I hope he is not reading this)

I tried explaining my circumstances, tried reasoning with them but soon discovered that the most difficult person in the world to reason with- after a 3yr old child is a uniform with a gun. A simple sticky situation turned into something else when they took all of us back to their station at Bar Beach. Of course on the way I let them have it. How could they do this to us? Could they not resolve this without involving their Oga? As it turned out, I needn’t have bothered.

We got to the station, me still kicking and screaming and they still ignoring me. The Oga was an obese man with a large overbite full of his own importance, I secretly wondered how he got any real policing done. They made all of us give brief statements and soon the offenders were roped behind the counter. A thorough search revealed they had at least #1000 on them and the police handed it to the driver who gave them back their change. One hour of my life I would never get back for this? We were then ‘released’, but not before the driver had found something for the boys.

About my meeting, I arrived the venue, Chocolate Royale and my boss wasn’t there yet.

Go figure.

The heart of the matter.

Hello people.

Backstage is a repository for all that is fun, all that is true and all that is real. We shall be going on a daily(well, almost) journey of anything or anyone that catches my fancy. It will be a view of life from backstage.

The stuff that goes down after the curtains are drawn, the stuff that goes on before the curtains are open and everything else in between. The things that we do not really see or those things we prefer not to see. Everything comes under the backstage lens. Everything is open for sharing and everything is illuminated.

Not for the squeamish, not for the faint-hearted and certainly not for the easily offended. No one or nothing is sacred- except those that really are, and the best part of it all is that everything I say here is uncensored. No nagging editors to worry about, no prying eyes. Nothing.

Just me and my thoughts, me and you and all of us.

Here’s hoping you stick around and hoping you come back soon because this is just the beginning.

From the backstage.

 

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