Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Drama Button

How many times at work or anywhere else during the day have you wished that you had access to this sound effect?

Drama Button

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Monday, July 27, 2009

Summer Love - Tia

I have been rockin' this track all summer. I will never forget the day Toya hipped me to Luchini. I fell all the way in love with Camp Lo. Uptown Saturday Night is THAT RECORD!!

I've been digging around trying to find out if this track will actually be on the forthcoming album. But I haven't really been able to find anything. So if anyone out there knows what the deal is with this track and/or the album, holla at me.

And for good measure....Because Butterfly is FINE!!!!
Open Letter to Robin Thicke - Tia

Dear Robin,

Long time listener, first time writer.

Maybe I'm just biased. I don't know. But I have not liked a thing that you've put out since The Evolution of Robin Thicke. Don't get me wrong. I'm a fan. And I understand that as an artist you have to remain "relevant." So I almost forgive you for putting that no talent hack of a gremlin Lil' Wayne all over Evolution.

But between you, me and the wall, I think you're trying a little too hard to be relevant. So much so that all the talent and creativity that you displayed on A Beautiful World has been sacrificed for radio friendly fare.

I just heard your new single over at Yeah, I'm gonna pass on all that. It almost sounds like a, dare I even say it, a lost JT track. I'm sorry...I'm sorry. I know people try to group all of the white boys into the same category. But if you don't want to be just another "blue-eyed soul singer" then do better. I know you've got some old Thicke tracks in a vault somewhere. Maybe give those another once over...

I need you to dig up that flash drive that has all of the songs that didn't make the cut for A Beautiful World and put out another Thicke album. Give this guy "Robin Thicke" a break and bring back the Thicke we all know and love. I mean, who doesn't love Brand New Jones?

But hey, if you just want to continue to cater to the masses and put out songs that are just a-ight, that's on you, Champ.

Kindest Regards,

Sunday, July 26, 2009

The Gospel according to John - Tia

We here at BGLU have long since referred to John Mayer as Pastor John. If you don’t know what we mean, take some time to really listen to his catalog. From Inside Out to Continuum, his music will preach if you let it. We jokingly (but not) said that Gravity should have been nominated for a Best Gospel Song Grammy.

That being said, I, well both of us, have been going through some dramatic changes in our lives. It’s too soon to really speak on it but please know that as soon as we know, you’ll know.
When things change in my life I’m pretty quick to turn to music. I honestly feel like God speaks to me through song. And it’s not always “Christian” music. I once heard a whole sermon in Van Halen’s Why Can’t This Be Love. I’ve learned to let God use WHATEVER He needs to use to get through to me.

So with that, I’ve decided to start what I hope will be there first of a lot of messages that I’ve learned from Pastor John.

No Such Thing – Room For Squares

Things have gotten really scary for me recently. My company laid off all of our contractors about a month ago and then they turned off our blackberry service the next week. They say it was in an effort to cut costs because no one uses them anyway, but I don’t know. (I will say that I hardly EVER used mine.) My boss started taking a lot of time off and I commented to a co-worker that I thought she was probably looking for a new job. Sure enough, two weeks ago she gave her notice. With all of the exodus both voluntary and otherwise, there are rumblings that the company could be in real financial peril and that the rest of us could be out of a job with the next month.

It’s a bit unsettling really. I have far too much debt to be out of job. And the constant talk and emails regarding layoffs have done nothing but generate unnecessary fear in those of us who remain. I found myself wondering if I am going to have to move back in with my father as a 30+ year old.

On Friday I finally had a come to Jesus moment about the fear and uncertainty in my life.

Welcome to the real world she said to me condescendingly. Take a seat, take your life. Plot it out in black and white.

How often has God made things happen in ways we would have never imagined? I’m SURE Sarah didn’t think she’d be pregnant during her retirement years. Joseph, yeah, I’m thinking he never planned on ending up in a pit thanks to his siblings. And I’m sure Noah gave God something of a side eye when he was asked to build a HUGE boat on dry land in a country that hadn’t seen rain for a minute.

We’re trained from an early age to plot out every second of every minute of our lives. But sometimes following Christ means that the “real world” will end up taking twists and turns that don’t really include our plans. There is a faith that has to happen if we are to truly call ourselves followers of Christ. And while the best laid plans of mice and men aren’t often wrong or bad, they sometimes aren’t the best. But even when things may look “off” we must have faith that the plain, boring, safe, black and white path that looks so good, may be the one that leads to an end that does nothing for us.

They love to tell you stay inside the lines. But something’s better on the other side.

Ohhhhh, God will call you to step out of the lines on faith. If you haven’t had to do that yet, just wait. You will. I mean, look at Ruth. Everything was pointing her to back to her own land and her own people. But in faith, she went with her mother-in-law with nothing but the hope that she would not be straight out of luck. Esther had the fate of an entire race of people on her shoulders. She could have easily tapped out and kept it moving for herself.

In times of uncertainty, God may very well call us to step out on faith and do what appears to be the impossible. But the great thing about it is, he not only promises to guide us but that the reward on the other side of our faith will be great.

Psalm 32: 8 - The Lord says, “I will guide you along the best pathway for your life. I will advise you and watch over you.

I wanna run through the halls of my high school. I wanna scream at the top of my lungs. I just found out there’s no such thing as the real world, just a lie you have to rise above.

Perception is not always reality. What it looks like is not always what it is. Elijah the prophet was being hunted by Jezebel and was posted up in the desert alone. I can understand Elijah’s fear. Not only had this broad, Jezebel killed all of the prophets, but she was brazen and sent Elijah a message letting him know that he was next. That’s gully.

So my man was under a tree crying out to the Lord for death because he felt alone and that there was no hope. His perception was that God had abandoned him and that it was all over. But what he perceived was inaccurate. While it was true that Jezebel HAD in fact killed the prophets, the lie that Elijah was alone and forsaken was just that, a lie. What Elijah seemed to have forgotten was that he served the God of provision. He served the God that brought the rain on the famine stricken land. He served the God who shamed the prophets of Baal and Asherah. He served the God who will make a way when the real world says that there is none.

God not only provided for Elijah’s needs but he brought up another prophet in Elisha. Elijah didn’t see (or perceive) another prophet in the land. God basically told Elijah to look beyond the obvious into His will. God will make a way when the “real world” lies to you and tells you there isn’t one.

Read 1 Kings 19 for the story of Elijah and Elisha.

I don’t know what’s going to happen with my job situation. But I do know that what it looks like isn’t necessarily what it is. I believe that wherever God guides me is the best path for my life. I just have to be willing to trust him and believe. And where I’m going and what I’m doing may not look like what I think it will look like, but I know that in end I will know what all this time was for.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

So Things Have Been Feeling Like THIS Lately- Toya

Will explain...soon.

Once In a Lifetime- Talking Heads
And you may find yourself living in a shotgun shack
And you may find yourself in another part of the world
And you may find yourself behind the wheel of a large automobile
And you may find yourself in a beautiful house, with a beautiful
And you may ask did I get here?

Letting the days go by/let the water hold me down
Letting the days go by/water flowing underground
Into the blue again/after the moneys gone
Once in a lifetime/water flowing underground.

And you may ask yourself
How do I work this?
And you may ask yourself
Where is that large automobile?
And you may tell yourself
This is not my beautiful house!
And you may tell yourself
This is not my beautiful wife!

Letting the days go by/let the water hold me down
Letting the days go by/water flowing underground
Into the blue again/after the moneys gone
Once in a lifetime/water flowing underground.

Same as it ever was...same as it ever was...same as it ever was...
Same as it ever was...same as it ever was...same as it ever was...
Same as it ever was...same as it ever was...

Water dissolving...and water removing
There is water at the bottom of the ocean
Carry the water at the bottom of the ocean
Remove the water at the bottom of the ocean!

Letting the days go by/let the water hold me down
Letting the days go by/water flowing underground
Into the blue again/in the silent water
Under the rocks and stones/there is water underground.

Letting the days go by/let the water hold me down
Letting the days go by/water flowing underground
Into the blue again/after the moneys gone
Once in a lifetime/water flowing underground.

And you may ask yourself
What is that beautiful house?
And you may ask yourself
Where does that highway go?
And you may ask yourself
Am I right? I wrong?
And you may tell yourself
My god!...what have I done?

Letting the days go by/let the water hold me down
Letting the days go by/water flowing underground
Into the blue again/in the silent water
Under the rocks and stones/there is water underground.

Letting the days go by/let the water hold me down
Letting the days go by/water flowing underground
Into the blue again/after the moneys gone
Once in a lifetime/water flowing underground.

Same as it ever was...same as it ever was...same as it ever was...
Same as it ever was...same as it ever was...same as it ever was...
Same as it ever was...same as it ever was...

Today is Tia's Birthday!!!!!!!

Feel free to send my bestest best friend ever some love. We love you Tia! Have an awesome day :O)

Friday, July 17, 2009

This Song Will Preach Too...Who Knew?- Toya

sha na na na, na na na na, sha na na na na

Autumn turns to winter and then winter turns to spring,
its not just a season to know its goes for everything.
clouds can turn to rain and then it just might snow
You gotta take lesson from mother nature and if you do you'll know.

Well its time to change
then its time to change
move by the time come along for the ride, dont you see
when its time to change you've got to rearrange
move your heart to what your gonnabe.
sha na na na na na na sha na na na na na

day by day its hard to see the changes you've been through
a little bit of living a little bit of growing all adds up to you
every boys a man inside
a girls a women too
and if you wanna reach your destiny its what you've got to do

Well its time to change
when its time to change
move by the time come along for the ride, dont you see
when its time to change you've got to rearrange
move your heart to what your gonna be.
sha na na na na na na na, sha na na na na na

Well its time to change
when its time to change you've got to rearrange
move your heart to what your gonna be.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

I Wish You'd Drive (sung like Miley Cyrus' "The Climb")- Toya

I can almost see it
Couple miles from the exit, but
I’m stuck in this here traffic
Illegal textin’
Wondering ‘bout the hold up
Oh we’re moving now, hold up
And now you wanna get over
Pushing me towards the shoulder

But now, I gotta be strong
Cause flippin’ the bird is wrong

I'm always gonna be stuck in traffic
I'm gonna always want to make it move
Nashville drivers are something special
The use of turn signals, something moot
It doesn't matter who got pulled over
Why are fools rubber neckin' on 65???!!!!!!
I wish you’d driiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiive...

*Kerri Hilson, don't go jackin'my lyrics. I have a lawyer*

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

This Song Right Here...

will preach. I woke up singing this this morning the day after having a rough conversation with my dad about how he sees my life as a pattern but I see it as a journey. Someone sent me this version of YouTube sensation Ahmir singing it and I burst into tears at my desk. It is indeed The Climb. And soon, it's about to be The Grind. Details coming soon...

Friday, July 10, 2009

Human Nature
or YES JOHN!!!!! - Tia

I'm sure you, like the rest of EARTH, have already seen this. But just in case you were in space last week, please observe why I would marry John Mayer where he stood if given the opportunity.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Gratuitous New Kids - Tia

This picture is old....I know. But THEY ARE STILL FINE!!! And this SOOOO brightened up my very dreary Sunday afternoon.

Dear Donnie Wahlberg,
I need you to stop playing and call your girl Candice and get my number.

Friday, July 3, 2009

Toya's Lazy Day Ramblings

1. Brandi Sellerz's "A Wonderful Day" is single handedly my favorite song right now so go check it out on her Myspace page at Refreshing. Remember, we told you about Robin Thicke, Adele, Mat Kearney and Laura Izibor WAAAAAY back in the day. You don't want to sleep.

2. I seriously don't know what God has against us being comfortable. Maybe it's because He constantly wants to show us how big He is and the cool plans He has for us.  I am VERY uncomfortable right now. Nashville just seems so...small. I'm a little freaked out but pretty at peace with whatever is next...ok 80% at peace.

3. My hair is boring. I had big fabulous kinky curly hair for 9 years so this Business Casual Barbie haircut has got to go. Will be seeing my hairdresser tomorrow morning.

4. I had a heated debate on Facebook this week with some people that think Mary Mary's song "God In Me" sounds too much like "the world" to be an acceptable gospel song. Church folk make me tired sometimes. I find it very hypocritical that people will excuse a vulgar song that has lyrics that go against what they believe that the bible is against because the beat sounds tight but will not excuse a song that has Godly lyrics because it makes them want to dance. Please.  I was PISSED. Still am. I wholeheartedly believe that the church is partially to blame for BET and the state of urban music today because we have failed to encourage artists to use their gifts outside of the church walls. It really sickens me. 

5. So I have lost 8 pounds in 2 weeks and I feel pretty good. I wouldn't say I am a vegetarian but I gets down with vegetables way more now than ever and without having one salad to boot. God bless the day when I remembered that potatoes are vegetables. Say what you will but again, I lost 8 pounds. I am taking my first yoga class tomorrow. Here's to agility.

6. I need Anthony Hamilton and Ginuwine to do an intervention with Jamie Foxx and teach him how to make music appropriate for a grown man. 

7. So...Michael Jackson and I ARE NOT getting married? Still can't fully believe that. And how hot is he in those rehearsal clips??????? My baby... I miss him so.

8. Speaking of MJ, ever since he passed away (still can't say the D word) my favorite songs of his have changed immensely. For instance, another part of me is MY JAM. I am also loving Rock My World and I'll Be There. I danced my little heart out the morning after he died to Butterflies after I sat on the bed and cried for a bit. I guess that was my way of celebrating his life. I am not so sad anymore. Now thinking of him makes me smile.

I cannot tell you how many people have said that I was the first person they thought of when Michael Jackson di...still can't type it. I didn't know that people knew I loved him that much. I didn't even know to be honest. I just numbed myself the day of by watching TV which is probably why I didn't cry until the next day. By the way, Butterflies is now my favorite song ever. Put it on the books.

9. I have already put the HR department on my job on notice that if Stevie Wonder leaves here, I am calling out of work.

10. I am sitting outside typing this. I NEVER sit outside but it is too nice out to be inside. It's perfect. Almost like...LA. *Sigh* We'll see...

Thursday, July 2, 2009

So EVERYONE is Mad - Tia

June 29, 2009

Dear Debra Lee,

Sunday night's BET Awards show was a disgrace. It's sad and unfortunate that your network, owned by Viacom, continues to crank out mediocrity and perpetuate negative stereotypes of black men, women, and children. Although you likely received high ratings for the awards show, there is no honor in reinforcing the status quo's opinion of black people. Your tribute to Michael Jackson and the overall show had its great moments, however, BET failed to deliver a solid, quality show. Rather than "raising the bar" and presenting African-Americans as a creative, proud, dignified people, BET lowered the bar for the entire world to see. The BET Awards drew a huge audience to watch a tribute to Michael Jackson, but left millions of viewers feeling disappointed, embarrassed, and reduced to classic stereotypes.

During the most blatantly sexist performances of the night, the executives at BET failed to act and display intelligence, courage, and leadership. Show executives watched, approved, and applauded as artists Lil' Wayne, Drake, and Cash Money brought young, under-aged girls onto the stage to dance and serve as window dressing while they performed "Every Girl," a song that reduces girls and women to sex objects. In a culture where one out of four girls and women are either raped or sexually assaulted - and where manipulative men routinely traffic vulnerable women into the sex industry - it is not okay that BET allowed this to happen. BET owes its entire audience - particularly girls and women around the world - an apology for its failure to intervene. BET should also take immediate steps to ensure that this kind of sexist performance does not happen again. Sunday night's show epitomizes why so many black people worldwide are fed up with BET and feel strongly that your network inaccurately represents black men and women.

Please take my letter and criticism as one that represents millions.

Byron Hurt
Also in Drake News - Tia
This will be the last of it. I promise.

So I finally got a chance to see the BET awards. Overall, it gets a fail from me. Michael would not be pleased. I'll keep my eye out for the real tribute.

And I finally got to see the end performance with Drake, Wheezy and the children. Yeah, where is DFCS when you need them? I was SCREAMING mad as I watched it. All I could think was whose children are those and where is yo' mamma at?!?!?!? But ALLEGEDLY, there is an explanation for why the junior high dance troop was on stage.

Word on the curb is that one of the little girls is Wayne's daughter. Apparently, when he went up to accept his award she was too far back in the auditorium to make it onstage with him. She was said to be inconsolable back stage for missing her opportunity to stand behind her father in front of thousands of people. (Or maybe she's smarter than we think. Maybe she was upset about not getting to go on stage because she knows her dad is NOT going to be winning too many awards outside of BET. This may have been her only shot....hmmm...moving on.) Wayne, being the father of the year, decided that to make it up to the girl he would let her "dance" with him during his performance to close the show. Her appearance was neither planned nor rehearsed.

Now this child being the Ride or Die chick she is didn't want to leave her girls out (they have some little group together called OMG) so she invited them to go on stage with her. How thoughtful...I'm sure their mothers were happy to see them.

So that f*ckery we saw was just a product of bad parenting. So I have upgraded the performance from EPIC EPIC EPIC FAIL to EPIC PARENTING FAIL. But my first question is, what made Wayne think that letting his pre-teen daughter dance to a song about sleeping with every girl in the world was a good idea? Do we have NO morals and standards left? But then again, it's her dad. So she's probably heard each and every one of his lyrics.

Honestly, it saddens me that this is what so many of our people have allowed themselves to become. Minstrels, bad parents, promiscuous...the list goes on and on. We already live in a hyper-sexualized country. So to encourage that behavior in children SO YOUNG truly hurts my heart. We have dropped the ball and I don't know if we can recover from the fumble.

I usually try to end my stuff with words of encouragement. But right now, I have nothing....
Open Letter to Drizzy - Tia

Dear Drake,

Congratulations on the EPIC FAIL that is the video for one the hottest songs of the summer, Best I Ever Had. It may easily be one of the worst videos I've seen...ever. First video out of the box and this is what you bring us. Wow...I'm in utter shock at how craptacular this is. You just inked a $3 million dollar deal and THIS is all you got....I guess it can only get better from here...I guess. If I were you though, I would consider reshooting this with better lighting, a better storyline, a better director (Yeah, I'm talking to you Kanye) and better actors...I mean, I guess those girls were "actors" right...? Never mind, they're probably just video girls and that would explain why the delivery from every last one of them was horrid. HORRID, I SAY!!!

Oh and before I forget, kudos on being able to objectify all of the following in under 5 minutes: women, female athletes, strippers, and mascots. That is no small feat.

Anyway, I'm still a fan of the album. As a lyricist, I'm more than just a little impressed by your flow. So I'm looking forward to the album "officially" dropping in the fall. And hopefully it will include some new stuff. But until then, you get the gas face and a Boo Negro Boo from BGLU.

Kind Regards and Boy, Do Better,