Monthly Archives: February 2012

Russian/British singer/songwriter/musician Angelina Roz

Singer-songwriter-pianist Angelina Roz was born into a musical family in Moscow, in then communist Soviet Union. After they fled to working-class East London,11-year-old Angelina, language barrier or not, was showcasing her talents onstage nearly nightly alongside her family.

By her twenties, her completely self-produced songs had clocked a million Myspace hits and she was on a plane to meet interested A&Rs in New York City at the insistence of her terminally ill mother, who passed away a week later. Emotionally strained and disheartened, it left Angelina all but homeless in NYC, the city she credits with igniting the creative burst that has resulted in her forthcoming EP The Carnival And The Tears.

Roz describes The Carnival as “summer London Town sound” and The Tears as a heartfelt account of her rollercoaster year. Roz is a resident at BBC 3’s Late Junction Max Reinhardt live night Radio Gagarin show. For more info on Roz, visit

Honors English, State Of The Art

Trenton, New Jersey emcee Honors English presents State Of The Art, his new Needlz-produced album featuring Lupe Fiasco, Freeway Rick Ross, Karina Pasian, TL Cross, Sunni Patterson, Lance Powlis, The Mad Violinist, Khari Lemuel and Saunders Sermon II. 

State Of The Art (SOTA) comes bundled with a two-part ‘visual album’, featuring interviews with MTV’s Shaheem Reid and visual accompaniments to each song in addition to the videos for “Crazay”, “Second Chances”, “Cymbals On The Sidewalk”, “The Name Is…” and “Flying High”. SOTA is the newest release from Dry Rain, the production company of Needlz, the Grammy-winning producer behind tracks for G-Unit, Ruff Ryders, Busta Rhymes, Fabolous, Bruno Mars and more. For more information, visit


Logo Announces Nominees For The 2012 “NewNowNext Awards”

Logo, today announced the nominees for the 2012 NewNowNext Awards .”  Now in its fifth year, this highly praised and always unpredictable telecast continues to go beyond where traditional award shows dare to go as it showcases who and what are on the verge of a pop culture explosion in 2012.  The “NewNowNext Awards” will gather icons, trendsetters as well as stars-on-the-rise to uncover what’s hot in TV, music, film and fashion long before they hit the mainstream.

The public is invited to visit or to view the entire list of nominees and cast their votes across a wide range of outrageous categories including “Cause You’re Hot,” “Beyond Style,” and “TV You Betta Watch.”  Additionally, users can vote for the NewNowNext Awards nominees on Twitter by including the nominee name and the hashtag #NNNAwards in their tweet.  Nominees for the “NewNowNext Awards” were chosen by the “NewNowNext Academy” – a mix of tastemakers from various creative industries across the country.

Winners will be revealed Monday, April 9th at 10/9C, on Logo’s “NewNowNext Awards” 2012 show.  The 90-minute special will be taped in front of a live audience of today’s hottest emerging and seasoned artists at the Avalon in Hollywood, CA on April 5th. Performers, presenters and special guests will be announced in the coming weeks.

Logo’sNewNowNext Awards” have earned a reputation for breaking new ground in pop culture. Lady Gaga gave her first televised performance at the show, Rooney Mara was a nominee well before an Oscar Nominee, Wendy Williams was handed “Guiltiest Pleasure” before she was handed her own talk show, and the cast of Bridesmaids made their first televised appearance together at the 2011 show.

The “NewNowNext Awards” builds on Logo’s acclaimed NewNowNext franchise, which includes Logo-owned pop culture and lifestyle blog and on-air music video show “NewNowNext.” On air, “NewNowNext” is the home of indie pop artists you need to hear, as well as style, travel and entertainment segments from companion website.

Nominees for the 5th Annual “NewNowNext Awards” 2012:

Next Mega Star (5)

  • Lizzy Caplan (“New Girl,” FOX)
  • Josh Hutcherson (The Hunger Games)
  • Michael B. Jordan (“Parenthood,” NBC)
  • Elizabeth Olsen (Kill Your Darlings)
  • Emily VanCamp (“Revenge,” ABC)

Brink-of-Fame: Music Artist (6)

  • Azealia Banks (Interscope Records)
  • Childish Gambino (Glassnote Records)
  • FUN. (Atlantic Records)
  • Jessie J (Universal Republic Records)
  • Neon Hitch (Warner Bros. Records)
  • Rebecca Ferguson (Columbia Records)

Most Addictive Reality Star (6)

  • Abby Lee Miller (“Dance Moms,” Lifetime)
  • Andy Cohen (“Watch What Happens Live,” Bravo
  • Big Ang (“Mob Wives,” VH1)
  • Evelyn (“Basketball Wives,” VH1)
  • Nadia G. (“Bitchin’ Kitchen,” Cooking Channel)
  • Willam (RuPaul’s Drag Race, Logo)

Cause You’re Hot (6)

  • Channing Tatum (Magic Mike, WB)
  • Henry Cavill (“The Tudors,” Showtime)
  • Jessica Lange (“American Horror Story,” FX)
  • Naya Rivera (“Glee,” Fox)
  • Novak Djokovic (tennis player)
  • Paula Patton (MI4, Paramount)

Beyond Style Award (5)

  • Andrej Pejic (model)
  • China Chow (“Work of Art,” Bravo)
  • Jeremy Scott (designer)
  • Kelly Osbourne
  • Sean Avery (writer)

Best New Indulgence (4)

  • “Absolutely Fabulous” Revival (BBC/Logo)
  • “Revenge” (ABC)

Next Must-See Movie (6)

  • Magic Mike (WB)
  • Moonrise Kingdom (Univ)
  • Prometheus (Fox)
  • Snow White & The Huntsman (Univ)
  • Ted (Univ)
  • The Avengers (Par)

TV You Betta Watch (6)

  • “Game of Thrones” (HBO)
  • “GCB” (ABC)
  • “Homeland” (Showtime)
  • “Portlandia” (IFC)
  • “Savage U” (MTV)
  • “Shameless” (Showtime)

Superfan Site Award (6)

For more information on the “NewNowNext Awards” and to vote for the nominees visit  For up-to-date “NewNowNext Awards” news and exclusives, join the NewNowNext Facebook page or follow the site on Twitter at @NewNowNext and #NNNAwards.

De La Soul’s Plug 1 & Plug 2 present First Serve & new video for Must B The Music’

“It’s funky, it’s hip-hop, it’s disco and it’s classic.” This is De La Soul’s Plug 1 & Plug 2 present ‘First Serve’; a dynamic hip-hop group, an album, a concept, the soundtrack to a movie that has yet to be made and a fable for our times.
‘First Serve’ is many things, but at its heart it is the story of two young boys from Queens, New York with big dreams and larger rhymes. Two friends, Deen Whitter (aka Plug 2 / Dave) and Jacob ‘Pop Life’ Barrow (aka Plug 1/ Pos), friends from seventh grade, are by their own admission, “different, but the differences seem to complement everything we do.” Their name ‘First Serve’ comes from their motto, “First come, First Serve, get what you deserve.” Years on the hustle, laying down demos and mixtapes in Deen’s mother’s basement sees them eventually taken under the wing of a flamboyant reformed coke dealer Ken Du, who took the position as their manager, and shopped their blend of hip-hop around.
The first instalment of this story is the jocular single ‘Must B The Music’, released on 26th March 2012 via PIAS Recordings. An upbeat, fresh track that finds the balance of a modern sound, with an old school feel that nods to the Hip-Hop flair of the late 70’s through the mid 90’s and beyond. Adding to the single are remixes from Zed Bias, Yuksek and Mr Chop amongst others, broadening the wide musicality of this exciting album project.
This album was made with the acclaimed French production team 2 & 4 (aka Chokolate & Khalid) who themselves first met through their love of turntablism. The album concept starts with their story: to fulfil their shared dream of recording a live hip-hop record. To do this they roped in the legendary De La Soul boys who created their alter egos Deen and Jacob for their part in this alternate reality. The four of them set about putting their hip-hop fable together in Paris, putting the producers’ live beats and electro flavours to the duo’s rhymes. The end result is a high-spirited, hilarious journey of hip-hop, skits and beats, where all the action takes place in a hyper-colour, animated world.
From the ‘Opening Credits’ through to tracks like the funky euphoric ‘We Made It’, the story follows our heroes’ original success, through the darkly-hung, break-up ode of ‘Clash Symphony’ to their eventual, tender reunion on the irresistible ‘Tennis’ and the call-and-response show finale, ‘Move ‘Em In, Move ‘Em Out’ – Deen and Jacob find themselves “bound together with a handshake, not a contract.” and we can all take something from the message that threads the tale of ‘First Serve’ together.
De La Soul’s Plug 1 and Plug 2 present ‘First Serve’ drops April 2nd via PIAS Recordings.

Kandi Koated Nights Package Launch with Real Housewife of ATL Kandi Burruss‏

Grammy award winning Georgia Peach Kandi Burruss (Real Housewives of Atlanta) gave Chicagoans a taste of her sweet and sexiness on Valentine’s Day as she celebrated the launch of the Kandi Koated Nights Room Package now being offered at the Chicago Hard Rock Hotel.

Burruss graciously greeted her Chicago fans upon arrival, discussed some of her favorite products from her Bedroom Kandi line that will be offered with the package and performed her single Fly Above. Fans were also greeted by special guests Eric Benet and Keith Sweat.

Customers that book this exclusive room package will get to choose from a list of discounted intimate items from Burruss’s luxury pleasure line, Bedroom Kandi. A Kandi Koated Night can include any combination of the following items, available after your date and room type selection in the online reservation process: Happiness & Joy, Kandi Kisses, Make Me Over, Hold On To Me or Natural Intimate Lubricant. Selected items will be discreetly wrapped and in room upon arrival.

For more information on the Kandi Koated Nights Room Package, visit For more information on Bedroom Kandi, visit


 Photos courtesy of Hard Rock Hotel Chicago

Killer Mike Announces New Album‏: R.A.P. MUSIC Due May 15

Atlanta-born rapper and Grammy®-Award winner Killer Mike will release his self-proclaimed finest work to date with the debut of R.A.P. Music on May 15 from Williams Street Records. The album, which was produced entirely by El-P, Brooklyn’s resident laureate hip hop artist, producer and entrepreneur, features a line-up of tracks that both deliver on rap’s most basic level and simultaneously document the socio-economic discrepancies and racism that still plague America today. With the album’s title acronym representing “Rebellious African People’s Music,” it takes its influences from all genres of music black people have rebelled through, including gospel, jazz, soul, rock and funk. R.A.P. Music‘s lead single, “Big Beast,” features hip hop heavyweights Bun B, T.I. and Trouble and is currently available on iTunes.

Nearing his tenth year in hip hop, Killer Mike has found tremendous success as both a group member and solo artist.  He has released five critically-acclaimed records and won a Grammy® Award for Best Rap Performance by a Duo or Group with Outkast for the song “The Whole World.”

R. Kelly Headlines 2012 Soul Beach Music Festival

Soul Beach Music Festival, hosted by Aruba, announced that multi-platinum selling, chart-topping, Grammy award-winning powerhouse R. Kelly will headline the 2012 Soul Beach Music Festival being held May 23-28 in Aruba. Joining an already stellar legacy by world-renowned guest artists, R. Kelly will headline the main stage of the Nikki Beach Amphitheatre closing night, Sunday, May 27.  Known for his mesmerizing live stage show, the multi-instrumentalist, producer and vocalist R. Kelly will perform an electrifying set, allowing Festival-goers a chance to turn up the heat on Memorial Day weekend with one of the most notable artists of the decade. Decor here is cosmopolitan tropical: turquoise bliss set against caramel sensations. Aruba isn’t just somewhere you visit. It’s something you experience.

“Aruba welcomes all the fans of the Soul Beach Music Festival for another celebration of spectacular performances and a chic island ambiance under the starry skies and on Aruba’s famous beaches,” said Otmar Oduber, Minister of Tourism, Transportation and Labor.

“We are thrilled to bring the incredible R. Kelly to the 2012 Soul Beach Music Festival in Aruba,” said Mark Adkins, producer. “Fans can look forward to an amazing weekend of great performances this Memorial Day Weekend with a combination of sizzling beach parties, luscious dining and plush Night Club after parties.”

The 2012 Soul Beach Music Festival rolls out more highly anticipated announcements of main stage performing artists in the weeks to come. For information about ticket sales, accommodations and the latest updates sign up for the Soul Beach Club, visit or Join the Soul Beach Music Festival community: follow us on Twitter @SoulBeachMusic and become a fan of 2012 Soul Beach Music Festival on


Oprah Winfrey to Join Lady Gaga for Born This Way Foundation Launch Event

Lady Gaga and her mother, Cynthia Germanotta, announced that Oprah Winfrey will be joining them at Harvard University for the official launch of the Born This Way Foundation (BTWF) on Wednesday, February 29 th, 2012. Oprah will appear alongside Lady Gaga as she formally unveils BTWF before a crowd of policy makers, non-profit organizations, foundation leaders, students and youth at the Harvard Graduate School of Education’s Askwith Forum.

Lady Gaga also will be joined by several renowned guests including prolific author and speaker Deepak Chopra, U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services, Kathleen Sebelius, and Charles Ogletree, Harvard Law School’s Jesse Climenko Professor of Law and Director of the Charles Hamilton Houston Institute for Race and Justice. The one-day event will be co-hosted by BTWF, Harvard’s Berkman Center for Internet & Society, the Harvard Graduate School of Education, the John D. & Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation and The California Endowment. Highlights of the launch event will be featured in an upcoming episode of “Oprah’s Next Chapter” on OWN: OPRAH WINFREY NETWORK. 

BTWF has partnered with the John D. & Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, The California Endowment and The Berkman Center at Harvard to explore the best ways to reach youth and create a new culture of kindness, bravery, acceptance and empowerment. BTWF, a non-profit charitable organization, will address issues like self-confidence, well-being, anti-bullying, mentoring and career development through research, education and advocacy. With a focus on digital mobilization to create positive change, BTWF will lead youth into a braver new society where each individual is accepted and loved as the person they were born to be.  

Additional details concerning the Born This Way Foundation launch will be announced closer to the event date, February 29 th, 2012. Please visit: to take the pledge and become part of the movement.

Photos from and


Tyler Perry’s Good Deeds Announces Good Deeds:Great Needs‏

In conjunction with the release of Tyler Perry’s latest film (Good Deeds) Tyler Perry’s Good Deeds is very happy to announce Good Deeds:Great Needs, an initiative to support Covenant House, a non-profit organization that provides for homeless youth. Through, Good Deeds:GreatNeeds will be collecting unused gift cards and donating all collected to Covenant House.

In addition, Lionsgate will be making a financial donation to Covenant House for every share of the Good Deeds trailer! So make sure to watch and share the video! To learn more and share Good Deeds:Great Needs, visit

Good Deeds also presents fans the opportunity to win a Valentine’s Date Night! Just head over to the Good Deeds Facebook page and submit your “love story” for the chance to win a $500 Visa Gift Card! Contest can be found here:

Tyler Perry’s Good Deeds opens in theaters everywhere on February 24, 2012. Film Synopsis: A successful, wealthy businessman, Wesley Deeds (Tyler Perry) has always done what’s expected of him, whether it’s assuming the helm of his father’s company, tolerating his brother’s misbehavior at the office or planning to marry his beautiful but restless fiancée, Natalie (Gabrielle Union). But Wesley is jolted out of his predictable routine when he meets Lindsey (Thandie Newton), a down-on-her-luck single mother who works on the cleaning crew in his office building. When he offers to help her get back on her feet, the chance encounter with someone so far outside his usual circle ignites something in Wesley.  This one good deed may finally spark his courage to exchange the life that’s expected of him for the life he’s always really wanted.

A moving, uplifting drama about coincidence, courage, and the defining choices we make on our paths to happiness, Tyler Perry’s Good Deeds is written, produced and directed by Tyler Perry, and stars Perry, Thandie Newton, Brian White, Rebecca Romijn, Jamie Kennedy, Eddie Cibrian, Jordenn Thompson, Beverly Johnson, with Phylicia Rashad, and Gabrielle Union.

stars Tyler Perry, Thandie Newton, Brian White, Rebecca Romijn, Jamie Kennedy, Eddie Cibrian, Jordenn Thompson, and Beverly Johnson with Phylicia Rashad and Gabrielle Union.

To learn more, visit: Covenant House: and Gift Card Giver:

DVD Review: The Mortician

DVD Release: February 14, 2012

Review by James Klein

Wow, talk about false advertisement. The Mortician is promoted and packaged like this is a horror film. Far from it. Much like films such as Boyz N the Hood and Menace II Society, this urban drama tries to be a life story about a lonely man helping a down on their luck family by getting away from an evil street gangster. While the previous films I mentioned worked due to the talent behind the camera and also in budget, The Mortician lacks the same heart and drama due to its extremely low budget and an oddly all British crew (shown in the making of featurette on the DVD) who just don’t seem to know what exactly makes an urban drama click.

The Mortician is about…well, a mortician. Played by Method Man, the mortician is a lonely, quiet, nerdy man who lives alone in a small apartment where he does taxidermy on the side and his only contact with anyone is when he goes to take refugee at a local hooker’s apartment. You know, the movie hooker whose beautiful and has a heart of goal. Even though the film is set in a real nasty crime filled area, the hooker is drop dead gorgeous and is always kind to her (Method) man.

While street crime and filth fill the streets, the mortician is busy fixing up all the dead bodies that come his way. When a beautiful young woman pulled from the canal is given to him, her young son tries to get in to see his dead mother but the mortician chases him away. When the boy’s ex-con uncle begins to work for the mortician, we find out that there is more to this dead body that is lead to believe. While the mortician sees much of himself in this young boy, he finally takes it upon himself to save the boy from this life of crime and help him find closure for his mother’s death.

I will say I expected The Mortician to be this silly over the top horror film and was glad to find a decent if not muddled story about a lonesome man with a dark past helping a young boy confront his. Method Man plays the mortician perfectly and shows great depth as an actor. The rest of the cast is fine although very mis-cast, especially Dash Mihok as Carver, the deadly gang member who is out to kill the boy but just looks like a skinny Irish hoodlum and Edward Furlong in a small, thankless role as the mortician’s supervisor. The cast just seems to “Hollywood” to me. They act fine but I never believed any of them would be criminals or poverty stricken inner-city folk. Even the setting looked too phony to me, as if the film makers were on the set of Death Wish 3 or Escape From New York. I just didn’t buy it. Maybe it was because of the budget. However, this film was shot in 3-D for God knows what reason. Is this the first drama shot in 3-D?

While the story is interesting, the pacing is very slow. At the 40 minute mark nothing had happened in this movie aside from the young woman’s death. I don’t mind character build up but let’s get a move on. At 89 minutes, the movie just dragged. It didn’t help that some of the music for the film seemed so made for TV-ish and was just too melodramatic and over the top. I do appreciate what the film makers tried to do but they end up making a forgettable film with good intentions.