What do you get when you mix house with Opera?
You get Septimius The Great!

This Baltimore native proves that you can turn your dreams into fruition with dedication and the courage to be different.

Although this former model doesn’t have much of a musical background, Septimius had a vision to create unique dance music that would break barriers and have everyone on their feet. Now, Septimius is a musical innovator with global recognition and ready to take on any critics that said it couldn’t be done!

What is that, you ask?

Incorporating opera with house music!

With the help of opera singer, Carmelita Bartholomew, Septimius The Great is making a permanent and well-deserved presence in the music industry! By blending rap with opera over incorporated music styles like house, dance, electronica, and pop, this duo has proven that thinking outside the box can benefit you in many ways.

Septimius’s Debut CD ‘To Be Emperor’ has been well-received both domestically and internationally, and it has also landed the duo Grammy nominations in 4 categories, including Best New Artist.

If you want to know more about this amazing artist, check out his website. In the meantime, check out his Pre-Grammy send-off event/performance, covered by Out & About with Lakia & Aneesah!

I saw 6lack (pronounced Black) as a music suggestion on Facebook, and I’m so glad I took it!

Because of 6lack’s soul-snatching debut studio album, ‘FREE6LACK’, he’s been named by Rolling Stone last year, as one of the 10 new artists to watch for.

The first single, “PRBLMS”, has put this rising Atlanta artist at the top, thanks to his bangin’ beats and unique sound. Since the official release of “PRBLMS”, the 23-year-old racked up thousands of streams on Soundcloud and earned a spot on the top five on iTunes R&B and soul charts!

Honestly…the entire album is worth your money. The 11-track project is full of bold lyrics accompanied with grimy, but sensual melodies.

This dude will be around for a while, so get used to his name.

 

When I took notice of this talented lady, I was intrigued by this actress in a film called ‘How She Moves’, which aired on the Bounce network a few months ago. Little did I know that this accomplished actress had already placed a name for herself in the industry. Rutina Wesley has been in the game for a while and is becoming one our favorites next  Angela Bassett and Nia Long. I’ve kept my radar on her since my discovery.

Before films, Wesley got her start in the acting biz doing theater. Once she moved onto television, she wowed us as the character Tara Thornton on HBO’s ‘True Blood’.

Now the 37-year-old is stealing hearts as one of the leads in the Oprah Winfrey Network drama series, ‘Queen Sugar’, produced by Auntie Oprah and powerhouse director, Ava DuVernay.

In an interview with Huffington Post, the actress shares why her role in ‘Queen Sugar’ is important to her.

“I think as a young actress I was like, ‘I just want to do a black play. I want to do August Wilson. I want to play a black role. I want to play myself. I want to see myself,” she told HuffPost video producer Jaques Morel. “When I would see Viola and Angela and they look like me ― I was like, ‘If they could do it, I could do it.’”

Bordelon is the “fully-fleshed out,” multidimensional character that most actors of color dream of playing, Wesley said.

“Getting the chance to play a beautiful gorgeous black woman with dreads, smart, funny, witty, a little chaotic. She’s everything. It’s a brown girl’s dream because she’s a real human being,” Wesley said.

 

I can definitely agree. It’s always refreshing to see images of us portrayed in a more genuine and positive light. I look forward to more from Rutina Wesley in the future.

Featured image by  Mark Seliger for Elle Magazine

When I saw all that black girl magic in Beyoncé’s ‘Lemonade’ visual album, I didn’t expect to see a few familiar faces. Amandla Stenberg, Serena Williams, & Zendaya were just a few of the awesome ladies to represent. I was also pleasantly surprised to see Chloe & Halle, who gained fame & popularity from Youtube.

If you’re familiar with Chloe & Halle, then you’ve probably seen several of their YouTube videos over the course of the past few years. Their Widely popular YouTube channel has garnered the attention of Beyonce, who was so impressed with the 16 & 17-year-old sisters, she signed them as her artists under her new record label, Parkwood Entertainment. They’re videos of them covering songs from various artists like Beyonce, Rihanna, Katy Perry & more.

chloeandhalle

Chloe & Halle recently dropped their new single “Drop” and their unique sound is refreshing to hear in an industry over-saturated with pop music.

 

Get to know more about Chloe & Halle here!

 

It’s been recently announced that former executive Vice President of ABC, Channing Dungey, is NOW the president of the major television network. ABC is home to a lot of popular primetime television series, such as Blackish, Quantico, and all of the shows written by the mastermind of dramatic television, Shonda Rhymes, including Grey’s Anatomy, Scandal, and How To Get Away With Murder. According to IndieWire, Dungey played a key role in bringing hit diverse shows to the network.

Via Indiewire

“Channing is a gifted leader and a proven magnet for top creative talent, with an impressive record of developing compelling, breakthrough programming that resonates with viewers,” said Ben Sherwood, co-chairman of Disney Media Networks, owner of ABC.

Dungey added: “I’m thrilled and humbled that Ben has entrusted me with this tremendous opportunity… And I am truly grateful to Paul for being a valued mentor and friend. I’ve had the great honor of working alongside the talented team at ABC for many years and look forward to starting this exciting new chapter with them.”

Dungey not only becomes the first black president of ABC, but also the first black president of a major broadcast TV network.

If you were a fan of the hit NBC competition show The Sing Off, then you know this group who became champions in the third season. Meet Scott Hoying, Mitch Grassi, Avi Kaplan, Kirstin Maldonado,& Kevin Olusola. They make up the GRAMMY-AWARD WINNING group, Pentatonix, that have transcended A Cappella to an astounding level by utilizing their originality to capture audiences who may have never embraced A cappella in the past.

 

I wanted to do a story on this talented group of individuals because I honestly have not heard A Cappella so awesomely done since R&B legends BoyzIIMen. Their performance delivery is full of spunk, style, and they exude  generous amounts of youthfulness that grabs the attention of young music lovers, all while capturing the souls of folks beyond their years. In other words, people of all ages who loves R&B, pop, and hip-hop loves this group. All being in their early to mid-twenties might have something to do with that youthfulness they embody, but trust when I say it will not matter. Pentatonix is very entertaining and appeals to music lovers.

 

Pentatonix (1)

Each member brings their own talent to the group, which also makes this group so special and full of personality. Scott is the statuesque blonde with the voice that could make any girl twirl and faint! His vocal range and runs are amazing! Mitch is the sassy brunette with the dimples and the incredible high octaves. He really delivers with any range and with such ease. I would swear he came out of the womb belting notes, instead of crying. Kirstin is the pint-sized diva of the group. She obviously brings the girl power to the group with her feistiness and her ability to win the hearts of the male fans. Avi is the bass of the group. He not only steals the hearts of the female fans with his amazing smile and gorgeous eyes but with his talent as a bass singer, he steals the hearts and souls of all of their fans. Last, but not least, there’s Kevin Olusola, who brings the hip AND the hop to the group with his awesome skills as a beat boxer AND his ability to be a walking percussion section. If I would have never seen the visuals to their music, I would assume there were live instruments playing. Between Avi AND Kevin, they’re that damn good! That’s reason enough that I need to catch them live.

I think Pentatonix will be with us for a long time, and I am looking forward to more from them. These kids can sing any damn thing from Britney Spears to Marvin Gaye! Check out their Youtube channel, PTXOfficial, and the Youtube Channel of The Sing Off (3rd season) for proof!

pentalbums

All of their albums are available from their website and everywhere music is sold.

Check out the visual to their current single from their latest album, ‘Pentatonix’, “Can’t Sleep Love”

Check out this bad-ass “Evolution of Michael Jackson”

Check out my favorite cover of “Royal” by Lorde

In the Lakia Nichole ‘dictionary’, the definition of #BlackGirlMagic is simply a woman of color doing big things with God-given talent and dedication for a meaningful purpose, all while slayin’ the beauty and fashion game with her own sense of style and grace! Teyonah Parris’s image would serve as the accompanying photo of the definition, to which describes the beautiful actress.

Teyonah Parris has made a name for herself as a talented actress all across the board in the television, theatre, and film industry. Essence Magazine has chosen the right woman as one of the featured beauties for their first ever #BlackGirlMagic themed issue!

teyonahessence

A lot of folks might be just getting to know Teyonah, despite being in the acting game since 2010. The South Carolina native and Julliard graduate started her acting career that year for her work onstage in the play called ‘A Free Man of Color’ and onscreen for a feature film, ‘How Do You Know?’ Her most recent work include ‘Survivor’s Remorse’, ‘Dear White People’, and Spike Lee’s latest controversial film, ‘Chi-raq’. Check out the clip below to see why Teyonah’s been nominated for an NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Actress in a Motion Picture.

 

I see Teyonah Parris being around for a VERY long time!

Check out Teyonah’s website here

Follow her online! @teyonahParris, all across the board!

 

 

 

 

%d bloggers like this: