Word 27: Radio


remember them days
when we would sing and sway
and you would serenade
me every day
and you’d make mix tapes
so i could rewind it back
and play a thousand times
that one dedicated track

our language was lyrics
our bodies spoke music
our smiles hummed duets
our spirits symphonic

and when you were nowhere around
i’d fall asleep to the sound
of our favorite radio station
playing our favorite rotations
i’d dream of songs
stages and scenes
with our love strewn in between
with the radio
playing in a soft hum
our love in stereo
love set to drums

Word 8: Bridge


Is it a surprise that even though I’ve chosen to illustrate this post with that of a physical bridge…the first thing I thought of was the bridge in a song?

Is it just me or do a lot of songs nowadays lack a decent bridge. For those who aren’t quite sure what the purpose of a bridge in a song is for…it’s exactly what it sounds like. It’s the “high point” in a song that takes the song from a verse into a chorus. Some of my favorite songs are my favorites because of the melody, change in tempo.

Anyway…I thought of that…and “the bridge is over, the bridge is over”…from KRS1

I’m out. I’m too tired to be deep or fun. lol

Nippy’s 50th

Hi!! ~waves fanatically~

If you guys have been paying attention over the years…you know I love/d me some Whitney. Nippy was the first voice I heard that made me want to buy her album. I got her first album, which was MY first album, when I was 11 or 12. I played the ENTIRE HEYELL out of that album. Miraculously, it didn’t get scratched and start skipping. 
*dang…I said “album”…as in VINYL! lol*
Let me take you on a little highlight reel of my life featuring the incomparable Whitney “The Voice” Houston…

I used to sing her debut single, “You Give Good Love” to my first boo. lol That was my SHIT! Nothing was greater than that song, except for when it changes tempo at the break down. YES! I get all of my life with that song. 

I can’t hit all the notes anymore, but when I was younger…I could tear it DOWN!

The summer that her second album debuted…I was 13. Yea, things got real that summer. I fell in love with the sophomore album just like I did the first. This time, it was two remakes that held my heart the most. “For the Love of You”, originally by The Isley Brothers and “If You’re Really Ready For Love” by the Manhattans. Don’t get me started on “So Emotional”, “Where Do Broken Hearts Go”, “Where You Are” and the underplayed and underrated, “Love is a Contact Sport”.

Yes, I serenaded the boo with this, too. LOL

I could’ve played it forever…and sometimes, I have me a Whitney day and go hard on those 1st and 2nd albums. lol

When I heard Whitney would be starring in a movie…I was ecstatic. My Whitney…an ACTRESS! Cool, so when’s it coming out? lol

The Bodyguard’s soundtrack was my next purchase…this time on CD. No more vinyl purchases at that point. More so, because I no longer had a working record player. Well, of COURSE I fell in love with “I Will Always Love You” a remake originally by Dolly Parton. Oh, and “Run to You”. Such a beautiful song…but the one I sang constantly that made my mama tell me to shut up one night? “I Have Nothing”…

so…now we start getting into the part of my story that becomes a little more personal and raw.

In 1994 I got into my first REAL relationship…with someone 22 years my senior. We had a tumultuous relationship of the sometimes physical ilk.  He had a tendency to get outta pocket and because my mama ain’t raise no punk, I [after the first slap] got “projects” on his ass. Well, where there’s stress in my life…musical refuge coexists. Our song was off of the “I’m Your Baby Tonight” album. Along with the title cut, “My Name is Not Susan” and a very sweet duet with Stevie Wonder called, “We Didn’t Know”…my favorite…OUR favorite…was, “Lover For Life”.

I remember that on our anniversary, which was November 12th…HBO aired a Whitney Houston concert from South Africa…and Whitney sang this song (which was rarely ever played). A beautiful and serendipitous moment in an overwhelmingly rough time.

Who knew that I’d literally feel like a prisoner in that relationship?

The next level of fuckery was just beyond beyond. I refuse to font it. LOL

Just know that the next song was so very apropos once I realized this man was out doing all kinds of madness…

I played that song and album ad nauseum. I loved Nippy’s rendition of Stevie’s, “I Was Made To Love Her”.  “If I Told You That”, “Heartbreak Hotel” w/Faith Evans & Kelly Price, and “When You Believe” the song from “The Prince of Egypt” animated movie.

I remember when Whitney began struggling with drugs and infamy. I wanted so badly each time she arose with a new album, for that to be the moment of reckoning. For her to be on top again and clean with the sobriety of her fan’s love. It wasn’t easy watching her fall right into the next scandal trap. Most people wanted to see her fail. The naysayers were rampant…and when she died, the seemed to act in shame and quiet remorse, but the banter began again soon after. Details, presumptions about the way she died, who she was involved with…eh. I suppose it’s all a part of being a public figure. I just wish there was a way to receive the art…the gift from someone…without all of the negativity. Either way, my heart dropped the day I heard the news, same as it did when I heard about Michael Jackson.

You never truly stop missing such mega stars. If the sun died out today, the Earth would die with it…and a lot of people’s earthly love for music dies a little more as these stars leave here.

I still love you Whitney. I get my life EVERY…SINGLE…TIME I hear your music and sing with you.

Happy 50th Birthday!!

Love Always, Kiwi

Larger Than Life: Rest In Peace, Heavy…

This isn’t a blog of biographical statistics. I’m not reporting the news. I’m here to pay homage to my town’s pride…so excuse me if this blog isn’t cohesive.

I  hail from Mt. Vernon, NY. We call it 4sq. because it’s literally 4 square miles. A small city sitting on the edge of Westchester County, bringing us within tickling distance of NYC’s influence. Growing up in Mt. Vernon was kinda cool. I think my era was one of  the best…maybe even the last of the surge of good offerings to the talent industry.

From my town hails Dick Clark, Stephanie Mills, sisters Phylicia Rashad and Debbie Allen, Al B. Sure, Sean Combs aka Diddy, Doug E. Fresh (both of whom also share roots in New Rochelle), Misa Hylton our fashionista, basketball player Ray Williams, comedian Talent and our own jazz love, Michael Phillips aka Mike Philly. We’ve always had extreme talent in our town…you were beyond blessed to make a name for yourself and make it out. Hev has definitely done that. From his music to the big screen, he has made us proud to have known him first.

Heavy and “the Boyz” (Eddie F, T-Roy and G-Wiz) rapped and danced their way onto the scene in 1987. I was just 14 and could remember how proud we were that they’d made it. Not long after their single debuted, I can remember them visiting the high school and just chillin’ in the cafeteria. (I had a little crush on G-Wiz LOL). They walked and rode around like they weren’t making videos and had their faces on an album cover, lol. Hev in that Blazer…was a summer staple for a long time before his success got hold of him affording him travel and appearances far from home. No one hated…we loved it. He was “ours”. They were ours…

Heavy D, or Hev (born Dwight Myers)…boasted pride for his town and his native Jamaica. You can’t deny that his lyrical prowess was a seamlessly fused combination of New York hip hop and Jamaican smoothness. His “bon diddly diddly dee” is often imitated but NEVER duplicated by those captured by his lyricism. Hev could dance too…light like a mug. lol He damn sure could keep up with the boys.

**I remember when Trouble T-Roy…one of the boys, died. I believe it was 1990 and it couldn’t have hit my town any harder. They were just getting the success they’d worked so hard for and his life was snuffed out so suddenly. An accident on tour where he’d fallen and hit his head…was the reason one of our pride was gone. S/N: I remember not long before T-Roy passed, I saw him in the “Puerto Rican” store (even though I’m sure it was owned by Dominicans, lol) and just remembered his smile. I can’t lie…I was wondering why he was smiling and speaking to ME, but that’s just how they ALL were. Raised right, given manners and respect and just all around good dudes. For his death to be announced not long after was enough to make you flop lifelessly in your seat and ask, “Why?”.**

Still…they pressed on. They made the album “Peaceful Journey” in his memory. (Pete Rock and C.L. Smooth later made, “They Reminisce Over You” which is still one of my fave hip hop joints to date.) As they continued making that music we LOVED to bump in the car…we loved and supported them. They pulled many along for the ride. Hev in many ways encouraged and mentored Diddy. My girl Tei gave me a link to an article Hev wrote about Diddy and it’s quite inspiring. Read “Believe in Ridiculous Dreams” here.

When I was on my way out the door on November 8th to run errands…the last thing I saw was an influx of posts on my Facebook ticker. I statused that I needed confirmation because we all know how the Internet does. When I got in the car, my mother turned on  98.7 Kiss and it was confirmed. At 44, Hev had begun his own Peaceful Journey. It was devastating…IS devastating. There’s no describing how or why it hurts…it just does. I spent the entire evening in tears…and it still brings tears to my eyes. Hev will be missed.

There will be services held in Mt. Vernon. The following link has all of the information for those interested. I don’t think I’ll be going. It would be hard to get in and I honestly think that this is a time for his family and close friends. I knew him…but, not like that…and I respect this time of mourning. I will be praying for his services that everything is blessed with PEACE and order. My condolences to the Myers Family.

My condolences to his fans as well…Mt. Vernon is inconsolable right now.

Remember Heavy D

My fave song…I can hear me and my bestie, Vikki singing this loudly along with the music in her car on the way to nowhere. lol

Simple Math

I loved “1+1” the moment I heard it. I heard a small clip of Beyonce rehearsing in her dressing room before her American Idol appearance and couldn’t wait to hear the entirety  of the song. When I saw the performance via Youtube…I was moved to tears.

That’s what I want.

Raw, unabashed, soul-stirring, see-me-naked-to-the-bone, loving the crud in my morning eyes, fight for me like I fight for you, 1+1 = us, kinda love.

That’s all I wanted to say…

Dia Viente y Cuatro~ Make A Playlist To Someone…

…and explain why you chose all the songs. (Just post the titles and artists and letter)

This is SO hard. There are like SO many people whom I have a musical history with. Friends, family, loves. This is almost unfair to ask me to narrow it down to one absolute person. I think I’m gonna go with my 1st love. The reason being is because for all intents and purposes…this dude (as well as my dad) help to imprint the love of music into me. We did duets all of the time, singing and vibing off music. To this day, this dude and I are still cool. THAT is the reason I can rock this playlist. We’re over each other but love each other just the same. We don’t kick it (which is best for all involved) because our energy is overwhelming and could shut out everyone in the room. We don’t mean it…it’s just who we be! 2B & 2E friends forever!

So here it goes…

Dearest First (Anonymity is best, lol):

~Let’s Chill by Guy~ A song that no matter WHO I’m loving still reminds me of you and makes me want to chill with you (as friends) LOL

~Giving My All To You by Johnny Gill~ Man. I can’t stand you dude! To this DAY whenever I sing this song and get to this part, I sing it the way you did…”I’m just waiting for you, Kali…come to me” LMAO Even though I know GOOD and damn well, it’s BABY…not Kali. Too funny! (Who ELSE’S name did you interchange with baby…damn Romeo) LOL

~I Care by Tony Toni Tone’~ I can hear you AND see you singing this…I’m so glad we cool as hell or I’d have to marry you. LMAO

~Let Me Be Your Angel by Stacy Lattisaw~ This is the first song you ever heard me sing and realized I COULD sing.

~Secret Lovers by Atlantic Starr~ No comments. LMAO

~Always by Atlantic Starr~ I just think that our voices went perfectly with their sound then. We tore this down every time we sung it.

~Ready Or Not by After 7~ Remember how you’d take the low lead and I’d take the falsetto lead?

~Thriller by Michael Jackson~ YES…the WHOLE album. We sung the hell out of this it!

~Center Of My Joy by Richard Smallwood~ He probably doesn’t even remember that I smuggled my mother’s album out of the house so he could hear this…see what a girl does for love? LOL

~All I Want Is Forever by Regina Belle & James Taylor~ Another duet we couldn’t resist

~Purple Rain by Prince~ Yes…again….the whole album. We watched this movie ad nauseum, so we sang those songs until we got told to shut it by your mother. lol

~Adore by Prince~ Always and forever this will bring me back to one of the first times we “did it”. Barely 14…but forever connected with you…AND Prince!

~I Wanna Rock With You by Bobby Brown~ I can see you tryna rock with me. *giggling*

~Perfect Combination by J. Gill & S. Lattisaw~ Come on…we’re the king and kween of duets! LOL

~Where Do We Go From Here? by S. Lattisaw & J. Gill~ WHAT? O_o LOL

~Vanishing by Mariah Carey~ One of my solos you loved 🙂

~Tears of Joy by Karyn White~ I can see you sitting intently at my dining room table as you listened to me sing it with my eyes closed 🙂

Look, I could do this all day with so many songs from several eras…truth is…this cat and I sat and sang EVERY day in some way. We were bonded through music and knowledge. We’re each other’s blueprint for what it is we seek in people. That need to be able to enjoy music and have great conversation between sexual peaks is something that is a pertinent building block of a relationship.

I hope if he ever reads this…he’ll be able to go backwards with me and enjoy the trip.

Love Always, “Pekoe Light” LOL 

Dia Trece~ A Band/Artist Who Has…

…gotten me through some TOUGH ass days.

See, this is where this challenge falls away. I seriously cannot think of A band or AN artist. So…here it goes…

Dear Music,

I have loved you for so long. I have early life memories of myself doing a wiggle to a pamper commercial…to falling asleep during my high school years, to Kiss FM. You sent me so many wonderful artists who made me cry when I wanted to remember, dance when I wanted to forget and reflect when I was alone.

You sent me the Emotions,  Cheryl Lynn, Chaka Khan & Rufus, The Spinners, The Whispers, The Four Tops and the Temptations…You sent me the Motown Sound and the Disco Days. The 80’s and 90’s and then I discovered the 40’s, 50’s and 60’s. Through the 70’s…you sent me Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye, The Commodores, LTD, Confunkshun, The Gap Band and more.

Growing up…I loved Madonna, Kool & The Gang, A-ha, Elton John, Genesis, Earth, Wind & Fire, Phyllis Hyman, Shalamar, George Michael and my king of pop and prince of sex…Michael Jackson & Prince.

I zoned out on the 90’s mixing and mingling my R&B with Hip Hop…and there I fell for R. Kelly, Nas, Jay-Z, Biggie, Faith Evans, No Doubt, Mary J. Blige, Erykah Badu, Tribe Called Quest, LL Cool J, Jodeci, Envogue, Boyz II Men and our triad of babygirls…Monica, Aaliyah & Brandy.

Lately, I’ve swayed to Jazmine Sullivan, Melanie Fiona, Jill Scott, Chrisette Michelle, Beyonce, Eric Roberson, Fantasia, Jennifer Hudson, Usher, John Legend, Rihanna, Alicia Keys…MAN.

I’ve missed SO many…soooo many that have laid me down with their lyrics. Cheered me up with their cymbal and given me breath with their bass. I can name as many as you can contain within your broad definition of music…but, I’ll NEVER…EVER…be able to scale it down to just one artist or band.

To do that, is to take away from a rhythm that I’ve perfected with hums and finger taps over the years and I won’t. I’m mad now…just KNOWING their are jazz artists and gospel artists and pop and reggae and classical pieces that have lulled me into relaxation and meditation, and I’ve neglected to name them in the haste of writing this post.

I love YOU music…and all that means.

Loving You…
while playing you on repeat…

Kali bka ~Kween~

tell him ~ lauryn hill

This song is so deep…so beautiful and my favorite off of the Miseducation of Lauryn Hill. I automatically cry when I hear it. It doesn’t help that I’m feeling some kinda way right now. 

Here’s the lyrics and the song. If you don’t already know them, just take a look. Lovely song. Tomorrow, is the last blog for the challenge. See you then. Good night, loves…

~tell him~

Yo heh heh tell him it’s like uhh you know uhh
Sweet sweet SWEET tell him

Let me be patient let me be kind
Make me unselfish without being blind
Though I may suffer I’ll envy it not
And endure what comes
Cause he’s all that I got and
tell him…

Tell him I need him [yeah]
Tell him I love him [tell him]
And it’ll be alright
*Background singing* Telll himmm be alright be alright
Tell him tell him I need him
Tell him I love him
It’ll be alright

Now I may have faith to make mountains fall
But if I lack love then I am nothin’ at all
I can give away everything I possess
But am without love then I have no happiness
I know I’m imperfect [I know I’m imperfect]
& not without sin [& not without sin]
But now that I’m older all childish things end
and tell him…

Tell him I need him [yeah]
Tell him I love him [tell him]
And it’ll be alright
*Background singing* Telll himmm be alright be alright
Tell him tell him I need him
Tell him I love him
It’ll be alright

I’ll never be jealous
And I won’t be too proud
Cause love is not boastful
Oooh and love is not loud
Tell him I need him
Tell him I love him
Everything’s gonna be alright [w/ adlibs]
ieee iee ieee iee iee iee iee iee

Now I may have wisdom and knowledge on Earth
But if I speak wrong then what is it worth?
See what we now know is nothing compared
to the love that was shown when our lives were spared
and tell him…

Tell him I need him [yeah]
Tell him I love him [tell him]
And it’ll be alright
*Background singing* Telll himmm be allright be alright
Tell him tell him I need him
Tell him I love him
It’ll be alright

Um, yea…

…not much in the blogging mood so I’m just gonna leave you with a song, a poem and a piece of art.
I love Faith Evans…and this song is one of those songs that if you catch me in a certain mood, I’ll end up crying while singing. *getting choked up* This and “Reasons” just get me…

Until You Came – Faith Evans

I love poetry. I AM poetry and music. On any given day, I awake to one or the other…or both, shining rays of artistic shine on me. I sing in my sleep…oh yes I do…and poetry lives so deeply within, that I honestly believe that my picture should be next to the word in the dictionary. Anywho…I love this poem by Nikki Giovanni…”The Kidnap Poem”

ever been kidnapped
by a poet
if i were a poet
i’d kidnap you
put you in my phrases and meter
you to jones beach
or maybe coney island
or maybe just to my house
lyric you in lilacs
dash you in the rain
blend into the beach
to complement my see
play the lyre for you
ode you with my love song
anything to win you
wrap you in the red Black green
show you off to mama
yeah if i were a poet i’d 
kidnap you

Behind, writing, music, and cooking…I wish I’d painted. I love the concept of a mental picture playing out through loose colors and blurred lines. When looking for a piece of art to post here…I literally gasped and then teared up at the sight of all the impressionist paintings that came up. Wow. How beautiful are the colors? Anyway…here’s something that walked up, introduced itself and came right into my spirit…Something about scenery. I picture me being the eyes viewing this. A blanket underneath me, a breeze and air cascading effortlessly in and out of me. It’s a daydreamer’s thing, I guess. lol

Take the song…the poem…and the art…and breathe in some beauty for me. Happy Thanksgiving/Holidays to you all and be safe and blessed.

*um, did I blog again without knowing it?* LOL

What’s Their Name Again?

 I SO hate when I get a song or a group in my head that I can’t put a name to. UGH! 

It all started today when my friend on Facebook put in her status some lyrics to a Keith Sweat song…and of course I had to sing it in his nasally tone because his whining used to annoy the hell out of me. THAT led to my saying that I also couldn’t stand Al B Sure. Now, let’s get a little background. Al and I both hail from “Money Earnin’ Mt.Vernon” in NY. I remember how everyone was so proud of him and I do remember liking “Night and Day” and dancing to “Off On Your Own” but he too, had a nasally tone that sent me into ear-plugging mode. I also happen to know his oldest son personally as well as his mom. So, I know more than most fans do about Mr. Sure. O_o

BACK to the issue…I decided to take my taunting to the next level and go to Youtube for a video fix. GEEZ LOUISE…the outfits we wore back then. *gagging* He had on acid wash, ripped strategically and then took off his jacket to reveal a short-sleeved mock turtleneck. Where they do that at? LMAO 

Then…BAM!! I saw them. The back up singers…and remembered they tried to “Get off on their own” and make an album. A one hit wonder of course…or else this wouldn’t be so damn hard. I remember liking the song, too…but I can’t remember the name of IT or THEM. When I googled them…I got NADA basically, except a link for a question asked on answers.com. Someone wanted to know the same thing I did…and the answer led me nowhere. DAMNIT!!!

THEN…I thought about this other song called, “Yeah Yeah Yeah” by a group of little girls that I can’t remember either. AND another song that was by a group of kids and all I have to go on is the word “question”. I remember thinking when Monica came out…that she looked like the cute little girl with the big voice. I also remember a song I can’t find anywhere by a chick named Tenee Williams…who I remember SOLELY on the fact that her first name is my middle name. *_*

Does this happen to you? Do you have MILES of songs that you can’t remember the name of or the group they came from? WHAT in the No talent HELL is that about?

SUPER UPDATE IN THE MAKING!! I FOUND the video by Tene Williams!!! Here it is. Do you remember?