Monthly Archives: October 2011

What Your Husband Don’t Know, Can Get Someone Killed

By Wendy Simmons

Every once and a while you come across a story about adultery that makes you feel for the adulterer and not condemn them. This is one of those times.

Stage play put to DVD “What Your Husband Doesn’t Know” engages us in the life of a loved and loving housewife, whose successful husband reluctantly neglects her. Not only is quality time put on the back burner but sexual interactions are also strained; so when a young attractive man begins working in her home, sparks fly and she is now tangled in a web of deceit that she can only hope to end before she ruins the perfect life that she and her husband built.

Lea, played by singer Michelle Williams, is married to Franklin, played by Amen’s Clifton Davis. Lea knows that Franklin has good intentions but the lack of affection and time pushes Lea into the arms of Paul, played by Brian White. With the guidance of her mother, Lea decides to end things with Paul; however his feelings quickly turned into an obsession. Lea has to now figure out how to stop Paul’s relentless approaches while trying to rekindle the flame that she and husband had throughout most of their marriage.

Lea confesses to her Pastor about the affair and ultimately her being forced to defend herself against Paul. While she narrates, we get the back-story of how a wife’s feelings of neglect can lead to a disastrous and possibly murderous ending.

This play, which was written directed and produced by David E. Talbert, wraps us into the drama of Lea’s life while allowing us to feel for her. I found this production to be very entertaining and captivating. I longed to see how Lea would be able to juggle a stalker and a loving husband.

There were a few musical numbers that I felt were not needed but it helped to showcase the talents of the cast. It’s not all drama through the play…Lea’s best friend and live-in house guest provides plenty of comic relief. There’s also a twist that helps to tie up some loose ends and give validity to Lea’s mother’s adamant advice on ending the affair.

This desperate housewife turned fatal attraction will keep you glued to see how a wife gets out of a terrifying situation. Pick this DVD up and question what you would do in that situation.

I give it $$$

DVD will be available for purchase on November 1st exclusively at

New Videos: Jill Scott “So Gone” & Mary J. Blige “25/8”

Jill Scott is showing a little sex appeal in her new video for the song So Gone from her latest CD The Light of the Sun. Check out the video below

And….the Queen of Hip Hop Soul, MJB aka Mary J. Blige just released the video for her new single 25/8 from her upcoming CD My Life II: The Journey Continues (Act I) arriving in stores Nov. 21st.

VH1 Divas Celebrate Soul

VH1’s beloved, popular franchise, ” VH1 Divas ,” returns and will pay tribute to the cities where soul gave birth to music’s most powerful classics and inspired today’s divas. Mary J. Blige, Jennifer Hudson, Jill Scott, Florence + The Machine, Kelly Clarkson and Jessie J will pay homage to these cities and soul music’s timeless classics at New York City’s Hammerstein Ballroom. ” VH1 Divas Celebrates Soul ” premieres Monday, December 19 at 9 p.m./8 p.m. central time on VH1.

“This year’s telecast will showcase the vast impact soul music has had on the 21st century’s music and pop culture landscape as our talented and diverse lineup will attest,” said Lee Rolontz, EVP, Original Music Production & Development, VH1 and VH1 Classic. “This year’s ‘Divas’ offers a modern twist on soul music, all while tipping its hat to the legacy of key cities that created this musical heritage.”

“VH1 Divas Celebrate Soul” will bring together some of the best singers across the globe, men and women alike, to honor the soulful cities that inspired these divas and their art.  The cities honored include: Chicago, Detroit, London, Memphis and Philadelphia. Accompanied by one of the most exciting groups of modern soul, The Roots, with Questlove as musical director, each diva will pay tribute through not only their own soul-inspired songs, but some of the greatest classics that have shaped a genre.

As in previous years, this edition of “VH1 Divas” will benefit VH1 Save The Music Foundation and its programs to restore music education in public schools.  For more information, please visit

M.O.P. & Snowgoons Collaborate For New LP “Sparta”

Hailing from Brownsville, Brooklyn,  Billy Danze and Lil Fame have solidified their reputation as iconic lyricists  through their years of hard-hitting rhymes and unparalleled tenacity. Never  compromising their style and having shared the mic with industry greats such as  Jay-Z, Jadakiss, Styles P, Guru, ODB, Busta Rhymes, and Redman, just to name a  few, the duo has rightfully earned its status as one of the most revered acts in  hip-hop today.

In Late July 2011, Billy Danze took to Conspiracy  Worldwide Radio to break the news that M.O.P.’s upcoming LP would be a  collaborative effort with German & Danish production team, the Snowgoons.  Speaking on the album, Danze said, “[Snowgoons] just sent us some fire…those  dudes are incredible…when you hear this project, you’re going to be satisfied as  an M.O.P. fan and a Snowgoons fan.” Ensuring fans around the world that this  will be one of their most diverse sounding albums, the Mash Out Posse member  went on to praise the Snowgoons, proclaiming, “they’ve got everything…they’re  blazing through and coming from different angles. These guys providing us with  that dramatic sound, with those theatrical sounds, with that hard hip-hop…they  supplied us with everything. I’m really psyched about this project.” Further,  listeners can pr

Consisting of founders Det and DJ Illegal plus longtime  affiliate and now 3rd member, Sicknature, the Snowgoons made their full-length  producer album debut with 2007’s “German Lugers,” released on Babygrande  Records. The Snowgoons continued their onslaught of orchestral and epic  instrumentals the following year with their sophomore producer album “Black  Snow.” Since 2007, the Snowgoons have developed a massive following, starting in  Europe and spanning the entire world, becoming  a staple in the underground hip-hop scene by working with approximately 100  lyricists. They have gone on to release four additional producer projects and  worked with some of the most remarkable MCs in the underground. Danze says of  The Snowgoons “We may get some features, but I think M.O.P. on a Snowgoons  project and Snowgoons producing a whole project for M.O.P. is enough  featuring.

“Those dudes are incredible,” he continued. “When you  hear this project, you’re going to be satisfied as an M.O.P. fan and a Snowgoons  fan. I think you’re going to flip your wig,” he continued. “They’ve got  everything… It’s amazing to me because most of the time, producers have a  signature sound. These guys already sent me like 50 tracks. They sent me 50  tracks and they’re blazing through and coming from different  angles.”

M.O.P. and Snowgoons collaborative album is scheduled for  release November 22, 2011 on Babygrande Records. Celebrating its ten-year  anniversary, Babygrande has established itself as a pivotal New York label  responsible for over 100 titles since 2001. After ten-years and counting,  Babygrande continues to consistently work with groundbreaking and world-renowned  artists.

 Get Yours

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Big Pooh Dirty Pretty Things Coming November 1

Rapper Big Pooh is excited to announce the upcoming release of his new album, Dirty Pretty Things. Serving as the second official solo album from the now-solo emcee, Dirty Pretty Things will be released November 1st via Big Pooh’s newly formed label, For Members Only.

In 2005, Big Pooh first stepped outside of the Little Brother umbrella, releasing his debut solo album, Sleepers. Since then, the fan favorite group released a handful of highly regarded albums before finally disbanding last year, and so, as Big Pooh sat down to begin crafting Dirty Pretty Things, with his career as part of Little Brother was coming to a close, he found inspiration in a movie that he felt mirrored his own journey through music. “I always thought Dirty Pretty Things was a really dope movie,” remarks Pooh. “But it was overlooked for whatever reasons, the same way I’ve been overlooked as a solo artist.”

It makes sense, then, that an album intent on proving, once and for all, that Pooh can stand alone as a solo artist would also serve as some of the rapper’s most personal work to date. “This album is me; it allowed me to give listeners a piece of my soul and reveal a lot of what I’ve been dealing with over the past couple years,” explains Pooh. “Dirty Pretty Things is about looking past outside appearance and finding out what’s really going on inside. It’s about the truth.”

Joining Pooh for Dirty Pretty Things is an impressive cast of producers and rappers, but more than that, they’re artists that Pooh felt best complemented his own vision. “I decided who to work with based on feel,” explains Pooh, who enlisted the production efforts of Nottz, DJ Khalil, Focus… , and more, while Torae, Joe Scudda, Carlitta Durand, Darien Brockington, and others lent vocals. “I’m not into forcing music,” notes Pooh. “Everyone was chosen based on how I felt they would fit the puzzle I put together.”

One of those puzzle pieces was Family Biz, Ent., who lent their touch to “Medicine Man,” released as the first song and video from the album. Joining that track are a handful of other personal favorites of Pooh. “Free,” for example, is a track about learning how to be comfortable in your own skin. “Are You Ready,” featuring Torae and produced by Nottz, is another standout, as is “Real Love,” produced by Focus…. “‘Real Love’ is about the current relationship I have with my brother,” explains Pooh, and the song is just another example of how Pooh’s most personal work has translated into his strongest. “All of the personal and professional anguish led up to this moment,” says Pooh. “Dirty Pretty Things marks my progression as a man, my progression as a businessman, and, most of all, my progression as an artist.”

Reeling 2011: The Chicago Lesbian & Gay International Film Festival

Wish Me Away

REELING 2011: The Chicago Lesbian & Gay International Film Festival celebrates its 30th anniversary as the second-oldest LGBT film festival in the world, showcasing innovative gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender films from around the world. This year, films are featured at six different Chicago area theaters. The festival runs Thursday, November 3 through Saturday, November 12, 2011.

Reeling is proud to kick off ten days of exceptional filmmaking with our Opening Night selection, The Wise Kids by Stephen Cone, marking the first time the festival opens with a film directed by a Chicago-based filmmaker. This critically acclaimed, coming-of-age drama follows three teenagers from a religious community in South Carolina who are in the transitional space between high school and college, when life seems to be all questions and no answers, and the future is scarily wide open. Featuring a “brilliant cast of young actors” (Variety), the film won Outfest’s Grand Jury Awards for Best US Dramatic Feature and Outstanding Screenwriting; Newfest’s Audience Award for Best Narrative Film; and Sidewalk/Shout Birmingham’s Audience Award for Best Narrative Feature.

The Wise Kids screens on November 3 at the Music Box Theatre, 3733 N. Southport Avenue. Closing the festival is the wildly funny satire, Going Down in La-La Land, by award-winning director/writer and festival favorite, Casper Andreas (Violet Tendencies, The Big Gay Musical). A sexy and uncensored depiction of what an aspiring actor can – and will – do to make it in Hollywood, Going Down in La-La Land screens on Saturday, November 12, at the Portage Theater, 4050 N. Milwaukee Ave.

Reeling is also proud to present three Documentary Centerpiece films: We Were Here, Wish Me Away, and Vito. Congruent with Reeling’s 30th anniversary, 2011 also marks 30 years since AIDS was first reported. In the documentary We Were Here, filmmaker David Weissman revisits the generation whose lives were affected in unimaginable ways when their beloved city of San Francisco changed from a hotbed of sexual freedom to the epicenter of the “gay plague.”

In the intimate and moving Wish Me Away, filmmakers Bobbie Birleffi and Beverly Kopf follow country music superstar Chely Wright’s journey as she finds the strength to reveal she is gay to friends, family, and eventually, the public. The film won the Los Angeles Film Festival’s Grand Jury Prize for Best Documentary Feature and Frameline’s Grand Jury Award for Best Documentary. Vito is Jeffrey Schwarz’s heartfelt portrait of Vito Russo, well-known cinephile and author of The Celluloid Closet, and one of the earliest and important voices in the struggle for gay rights. Screenings for the festival take place at Landmark’s Century Centre Cinema (2828 N. Clark St.), Music Box Theatre (3733 N. Southport Ave.), Chicago Filmmakers (5243 N. Clark St.), Instituto

Cervantes (31 W. Ohio St.), the Block Cinema at the Mary & Leigh Block Museum of Art (40 Arts Circle Drive, Evanston), and the Portage Theater (4050 N. Milwaukee Avenue).

The mission of Reeling is to recognize the important artistic and socially relevant contributions LGBT filmmakers have made to our culture and to counteract stereotyping with valid, meaningful, and diverse portrayals of LGBT people. For more information visit:

“Love & Hip Hop” Season 2 – Premieres Monday, November 14

VH1’s hit docu-soap series Love & Hip Hop returns for its second season, picking up where the first season left off, following the lives of six vibrant women, each with a link to the exciting, glamorous and high-stress world of hip hop.

The leader of the pack is Chrissy Lampkin , long time girlfriend of superstar rapper Jim Jones.  Last season Chrissy made a bold move and proposed to Jim.  This season, she’s still waiting for that wedding.  Maybe it’s Jim’s fear of commitment or maybe it’s Chrissy’s tense relationship with Jim’s mom Nancy – either way, Chrissy has made it clear that she’s not willing to wait much longer.  At the end of season one, Olivia Longott had finally stepped out of from the shadows of her old crew, 50 Cent’s G-Unit, and released a new single, “December.”  But after some initial buzz, Olivia is back where she started; hustling harder than ever to launch a solo career and get signed by a major label.  Last season, celebrity stylist, Emily Bustamante tried desperately to get a real commitment from her son’s father, rap star Fabolous.  Unwilling to live in the shadows any longer, she has finally decided to move out on her own and start a Fab-u-less new life.  Somaya Reece, the Latina Bombshell who made her entrance last season is back again, with killer curves and a fierce commitment to do whatever it takes to launch her rap career. 

Two new faces joining the group are Kimberly “Kimbella” Vanderhee and Yandy Smith . New to the Love & Hip Hop” franchise, Kimbella is a sexy bi-racial model ready to try her luck at the pop music game.  She’s linked to the group by Dipset crew member and rapper Juelz Santana, with whom she shares a son, but fitting in with the other women may prove difficult. Yandy Smith , long time manager of rapper Jim Jones, is an entertainment powerhouse, having worked with big names such as Missy Elliott, Busta Rhymes and Cameron to name a few.  In addition to being friends with both Chrissy and Kimbella, she’s also the glue that holds the Dipset crew together.

This one-hour, 10 episode series will follow these six women as they navigate their professional and love lives in a world where opportunity, fame, excitement and money is always in sight … but sometimes just out of reach.

Viewers can catch sneak peeks of the premiere episodes for each series on the week before they premiere on air. Subsequent episodes will be available on after they air. Additional video content from each series including bonus scenes and exclusive extras from each episode will be available on and on VH1 Mobile throughout the season.

Get More: Love And Hip Hop

Performers Announced for “2011 American Music Awards®” Nov. 20th on ABC

dick clark productions (dcp) president and executive producer Orly Adelson announced that Christina Aguilera, Justin Bieber, Mary J. Blige, Kelly Clarkson and Maroon 5 will perform at the “2011 American Music Awards®“. They join previously announced acts including Katy Perry and Pitbull. Maroon 5 and Christina Aguilera will team up to perform “Moves Like Jagger.” In keeping with recent tradition, the “American Music Awards” is a host-free event that highlights music’s biggest artists performing on one stage.

The show will be broadcast live from the NOKIA Theatre L.A. LIVE on SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 20th (8:00-11:00 pm ET/PT) on ABC.  Tickets are now on sale (please visit or call 1-877-234-8425.). This year, ABC will air a live pre-show “Countdown to The American Music Awards” starting at 7:00 pm ET/PT. In addition, the online pre-show “Coca-Cola Red Carpet LIVE! @ the 2011 AMAs” hosted by Lance Bass, Michael Buckley, Estelle, Sarah Hyland, Josh Sussman and Xzibit will stream live for fans worldwide starting at 2 pm PT / 5 pm ET.

For the fifth year, winners will be determined by online voting. Fans can vote at the Coca-Cola AMA voting website,, as well as Artists will be honored in the categories of Pop/Rock, Country, Rap/Hip-Hop, Soul/R&B, Alternative, Adult Contemporary, Latin, and Contemporary Inspirational.  Fans can go to the official homepage of the “2011 American Music Awards,”, to find performer and presenter announcements, artist information, and more.

Vote Yes for Love?

By Wendy Simmons

What happens when two opposing political sides meet in a fiery battle? Fireworks commence. And that’s exactly what happens when pro-Obama Aretha meets the unlikely pro-McCain Kyle in the romantic comedy Politics of Love

Aretha, played by Bollywood star Mallika Sherawat, is Indian- American, raised by her biological Indian father and African American step mother, played by Loretta Devine. She grew up having to love and embrace both cultures; which can be an conflict when mom and dad can’t even agree on much of anything. After returning home from a failed career in New York, Aretha is convinced to work for the 2008 Obama election. That career change leads her to meet Kyle, played by Brian White. He’s her counterpart in the McCain camp and they’re both very passionate about their candidates, and other things as well. Kyle and Aretha’s attraction to one another is undeniable, but will it work? Can too sides of the aisle put aside their differences in order to let love blossom? That’s what director William Dear is trying to allow us to witness.

A wonderful cast makes up this romp of a comedy. Devine is accompanied by Ruby Dee and Gerry Bednob, making this film rich with acting history. The chemistry between the main two characters was very realistic.
But although the performances were enjoyable the silly antics caused this fairly smart comedy to appear immature . It’s a great concept and a wonderful way to relive a very historical moment in our country but the predictable plot was a little disappointing.

Perhaps, you can rent this one on DVD for date night.

I give it $$

Tracee Ellis Ross and Regina King Co-Host “BLACK GIRLS ROCK! 2011”

Once again BET Networks joins forces with Beverly Bond, founder and CEO BLACK GIRLS ROCK!™ for the second annual televised “BLACK GIRLS ROCK!™ 2011” special.  Dedicated to honoring exceptional women of color around the world who stand as inspirational and positive role models, “BLACK GIRLS ROCK!™ 2011” is back with two talented co-hosts, Tracee Ellis Ross and Regina King.  Beautiful, multifaceted and empowering, this duo promises to bring elegance, intelligence and glamour to the telecast as BET Networks and BLACK GIRLS ROCK!™ celebrate the achievements of this year’s honorees.  “BLACK GIRLS ROCK!™ 2011” tapes October 15, 2011 at the historic Paradise Theater Bronx, NY and will make its network premiere on Sunday, November 6 at 8:00 p.m. eastern time.

The two-hour event will be a star-studded evening celebrating the strengths, triumphs and talents of Black women.  Last year’s recipients included: Ruby Dee – Living Legend Award; Missy Elliot – Visionary Award; Raven Symone – Young, Black & Gifted Award; Keke Palmer – Who Got Next Award; Rev. Dr. Iyanla Vanzant – Motivator Award; founder Teresa Clarke – Shot Caller Award; and Major General Marcelite J. Harris the nation’s highest ranking African-American woman in the Department of Defense – Trailblazer Award.  

This year’s “BLACK GIRLS ROCK!™ 2011” celebration will once again deliver phenomenal performances from today’s leading Black female entertainers.  Last year’s performance of Nina Simone’s “Four Women” by Kelly Price, Marsha Ambrosius, Jill Scott and Ledisi was an instant classic fueled by undeniable strength, beauty, talent and passion. This year, viewers can expect more magical moments that are sure to empower, entertain and elevate the soul and senses.

Founded by celebrity DJ and Philanthropist, Beverly Bond, BLACK GIRLS ROCK!™ is dedicated to promoting positive images of women of color in mass media.  BLACK GIRLS ROCK!™ Inc., is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, that has been dedicated to the healthy development of young women and girls since 2006.  BLACK GIRLS ROCK!™ Inc. seeks to build the self-esteem and self-worth of young women of color by changing their outlook on life, broadening their horizons and helping them to empower themselves. For additional information on BLACK GIRLS ROCK!™, visit