Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Cop That Ne-Yo Today...

'Words' Worth Hearing

After landing at No. 1 as co-writer of Mario's 2004 smash "Let Me Love You," R&B singer/songwriter Ne-Yo is poised to hit the top of the charts as an artist. The 23-year-old newcomer's debut, "In My Own Words," arrives this week via Def Jam. The crossover single "So Sick" is No. 4 on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart and No. 8 on the Billboard Hot 100 this week.

Just what is it about Ne-Yo -- who was born Shaffer C. Smith in Camden, Ark., and raised in Las Vegas -- and his music that is creating all the hoopla? Pair his lyrical skill with emotive vocals and arresting melodies, and Ne-Yo's game plan becomes clear: Push R&B back to the forefront.

"I'm glad to see that people like Alicia Keys, John Legend and Trey Songz are bringing a face back to R&B," Ne-Yo says. "And I'm trying to be one of those people, giving people quality R&B music that's going to trigger some kind of emotion."

Ne-Yo says breaking out of the songwriter mold was difficult at first, and his now busy schedule has caused him to sacrifice sleep, nourishment and a love life. But he is growing fond of the new pace. "As a songwriter you go into a studio and it doesn't matter what you look like in there," he says. "As an artist, you have to look right and make sure you say the right things. It's an interesting transition, but I'm making it."

Source: Billboard.com

*personally, I liked the songs on the advance better, but the retail is still hot! he's got much talent*

Not Much to Report in Career News...

I sent 'Despite What They Say' to the label exec this past weekend - I plan on following up with him tomorrow.

The producer said that we are most def gonna get down in the studio this weekend, so I am praying that happens.

I am starting Lent tomorrow. Although I am not Catholic, I believe in fasting which is a commom Christian practice and I am a Christian. Like last year, I am giving up 'Hoof and Fowl' meaning I will essentially be Vegan until Easter.

On that note, I am going to Fat Burger tonight to get a phat juicy Turkey Burger before I commence...

There is alot going on this week: a potential Baby Phat party going down on Thursday, Soweto Gospel Choir at SC' this Friday, Saturday - networking event, studio maybe and my best friend's mom's enchilada and margarita party....

Anyways, hopefully I'll be in a better blogging mood tomorrow, but right now, I've got a choatic desk to get under control and a growing 'To Do' list...

*back to work*

Sunday, February 26, 2006

Shout Outs...

again, because I feel like it...

to my boy GV (front and center, literally) and the bruhs of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc... for holding it down at the 2006 Image Awards.

Peep the show this Friday March 3, 2006 on Fox.

Brother, Don't Let Nobody Hold You Back....

pics of some of our fine, talented black men at the 2006 Image Awards... check out more pics @ CL.

*dang, I wish I was there this year*

Saturday, February 25, 2006

This Day In Music History...

1983 -
Marvin Gaye wins two Grammys for "Sexual Healing," Best Male Vocal R&B Performance and Best Instrumental R&B Performance.

Source: Billboard.com

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Shout Outs...

Because I feel like it...

My boi Austin Coleman. We went to college together, but as you can see from the photo above he's so sick as a professional biker. Man, our people are everywhere...

*big ups*

Perspective, Part II

*I contemplated whether or not I'd should even write this post because it's so personal, but considering the two previous posts on the topic, I felt like this is a befitting way to end the discussion.*

So my friend and I spoke very briefly today...

She instant messaged me while I was at work and said thank you for the message.

She could have ignored it, but she didn't.

She said her dad has "good days and bad days" and that she is "okay."

"People have been really good to the family" she said.

I told her that "I don't want to beat a dead horse, but I wish I could have been there for her."

at least she knows. I feel a little better. It's been on my mind and heart all week.

*thanks for reading*

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Elle's Pic of the Week...

I Used to Love H.E.R....

but now, I just wonder who keeps letting her out of the house like this...

Really Pink Sequined Biker Shorts?

My heart hurts...

*Still rooting her though*

You Run The Risk...

Up until now, I've never been offended by any comment left on my blog. But this morning as I checked my email, I saw this message.

You run the risk of hearing things that you don't like when you share extremely personal information with a world full of strangers, ...but somehow, the tone of this comment has rubbed me the wrong way. It could be the anonymity of the blogger with his or her judgemental tone or it could be that somehow I feel as I though this is someone I know...either way - I felt a bit attacked.

The only thing I have to say in response is that I am not perfect - I don't profess to be. And I may not handle every situation with as much maturity and rationale as I'd like to - or others think I should - but I try to deal with every situation and grow from it. I am not yet the woman I want to be, but I am working towards it everyday - sometimes I'll falter and sometimes I'll succeed with grace, but I am trying. And every mirror has two faces just like every situation.

Comment left my an anonymous Blogger regarding this post...

"damn, this is hella perspective"
The loss of a true friendship IS a tragedy, but one asks the question, "what is a true friendship?" Do you define your relationship with this person a TRUE friendship as you put it. A true friendship is one that regardless of anything that takes place you are able to reconcile. Pride should not be an issue at any point. Everyone has some level of pride, but when someone is going through the painful journey of a family member struggling with an chronic illness everything becomes a blur, including friends. It takes the persistence of TRUE friends to provide support for their friend. The pain of losing or possibly losing your mother and best friend can cripple most people. Others may become emotionally isolated. I don't know what took place in this situation, but it seems as though you were truly selfish when it came to reaching out to your TRUE friend. If this were your true friend, your pride would not be an issue. You would understand that your friend is in pain and make somewhat of an attempt to forgive and forget regardless of what took place. This is difficult to do, but it takes a selfless and caring person to do something so unselfish. I would ask the question, how many true friends do you have? From what I can tell from this blog is that you are indicating how important your feelings are as opposed to your alleged true friend. Do you even know how she feels? Take the time to ask yourself, was this friend there for you in your time of need or crisis, which everyone has? There are times in all of our lives when we need the comfort and solace of someone who understands completely, and for some reason, continues to help us when we are at our worst, perhaps even exhausting them. You have to understand that feelings of anger, frustration, sadness, and being overwhelmed can alter a friendship, but it takes understanding and effort to overlook these things. To me, a true friend understands. Not the kinds that say they will be there for you and then are purposely. They are the kind that say they’ll be there, then are, and amaze you with how devoted they really are. Going through a time of crisis reveals who your real friends are. But your real, true, friends are the ones who come through with flying colors, when you do not even have to ask. I realize that an attempt to contact your friend was quite difficult given the circumstances, but one call and a voicemail to me is simply not enough for a TRUE FRIEND who is mourning the loss or possible loss of a mother and best friend. I do not mean to seem harsh, but I am putting this into Perspective. If I were your alleged TRUE FRIEND, I would feel disappointed and somewhat betrayed that at this time of need and pain you put your feelings ahead of mine and could not go out of your way, putting 110% into being there for your friend. If the reasons for the fallen out are unidentifiable, what is holding you back. How would you feel if your mother was on her deathbed and ended up passing away, but your true friend did not go out of her way to make you feel supported and loved. Reflect on this as it might save or preserve some true friendships that you currently have. Just a thought....

Posted by Anonymous to ElleB-dom: Diva In Training at 2/22/2006 12:43:03 AM

*I am almost certain I know this person.*

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Half Empty or Half Full? What Do You Think...

...about open relationships?

good idea or bad idea?

under what circumstances?

do you think the two involved will ever become serious or is it doomed?

do you think it the two involved were ever serious and decided to have a open relationship, it's just a holding pattern for a break up (read: til something better comes along)?

have you ever been in an open relationship?

do you even know what an open relationship is?

*let me know what you think? I'll be waiting*

Not So Fresh and So Clean

Man beat his roomate to death over toilet paper.

Check out the story here.

Monday, February 20, 2006

Just Real Quick...

Full update to come soon, but check out my new track [in production] on MySpace.com

Despite What They Say

Still in production...gonna add some male vocal to the backgrounds and re-do some leads and ad libs...turn up the volume of some of the existing backgrounds and then it's a wrap.

Let me know what you think...I'm turning this one in to the label exec this Friday...


Thursday, February 16, 2006

Elle's Pic of the Week

Anybody else wondering, how Mariah went from this...

Mariah @ Grammys?

to this?

Mariah on February 23rd issued of Rolling Stone Magazine.

Don't get it twisted, I am a fan of Photoshop...and I'm not mad at Mariah for getting older and putting on some weight. But just keep it real, baby girl!

It's okay to be thick...don't fake the funk.


and i'll be damned if someone thinks he's PATRIOTIC! he only give a shit about his *and his friend's own interests* He'd sale America if it were constitutional, oh, and I am sure his boy Karl has got a team on it right now trying to figure out where that loophole is.

really doe...check out this story.

Update Time...Producers and more!

Tonight I am meeting the "the producer" to discuss my little project for the label exec I auditioned for last Friday.

We are meeting at his church tonight out in Lynwood. Anyways, I am excited that he called me back and we are gonna get the ball rolling on this project. Plus, he's really cool *considering he was just nominated for a Grammy as a co-writer on Fantasia's "Free Yourself."*

I've woken up the past several morning feeling congested in my throat and I think a cold is looming, although I hope that it will keep at bay at least until I've done all I need to do for my next meeting.

In addition to working with "the producer" I am supposed to be working with another producer 'Goldfingaz' whom I know from a former life. I am recording a track called "911" which a sick duet.

I am also suppossed to be meeting with Tuna Butter to FINALLY finish "What's the Difference." We only have the hook left to write - I think I am mentally tapped out at this point though on lyrics for the song.

"Despite What They Say" is almost completed. We started on a new track called "Workin'" It's my attempt at a club banger. I am having a lot of fun writing to this track - I think it's gonna be hot...in time enough for the summer. Ya' heard me?!?

In other news, some people are tripping including The Beatnix who have been MIA for the past several weeks - I hope everything is alright, but I won't know unless they call me back, right? Oh and then, someone else, who well, I have not decided if I really want to deal with...cus I feel like he's playing games *but that's just on a personal note* In any event, it'll be inspiration for another song.

Oh and before I leave...COP THAT NE-YO when it drops! He's mos def very talented...my boy said his PR ppl emailed him and said he's already sold 700,000 copies pre-sale. Gone Gold, before it hit the stores...

Anyways, gotta get back to work.


Tuesday, February 14, 2006


Today I learned a once good friend of mine's mother passed away from cancer this week. She and I had some differences between us, which are still really unidentifiable - only it appears that we both felt betrayed by the other in some way. I learned her mom was sick a few months before she and I stopped talking. Deep seated issues can make you so cross-eyed, that you fail to see what's really important about friendship. What's important is being there for your true friends.

Not only am I saddened by her loss, because she and her mom were best friends, but I feel a heavy burden on my shoulders for not being there for my friend. Many times, I have questioned whether I could reconcile - take the higher ground. All the time I came back with the answer that there can't be forgiveness when both parties have not made amends and taken responsibility for their actions. Neither one of us came out the white horse.

Still...I am feeling her pain and my own pain and I am really sad.

I asked a mutal friend we have in common to give her my condolensces. He told me that'd it be best if they came from me. So I called, got her voicemail, and left a message - through small sobs. I sat in my cubicle for about 30 minutes and cried to myself.

I realized that I am crying, not only for this tragedy but I am crying for my loss of friendship, a casualty to the weight of my pride. And by extension, I began to cry about my "strength" and my ability to "self-preserve" by-any-means-necessary.

Even though life hurts sometimes, isolating the things that hurt you can come back to hurt you even more - in this situation, my ability to adjust to life without people who I was once really close with is only temporary solution - A SLEEPING GIANT...

*damn, that's hella perspective*

There IS Something about Remy...

Because I like her. I think she channels my inner Lucresia or something.

More Good Reasons for Gun Control...



Oh, by the way,
Happy Valentine's Day

Sunday, February 12, 2006

Audition Day...

so the audition went well this past friday. although i was hit with an extreme wave of nervousness about 10 minutes before i went into my audtion i think the outcome is promising. i have another meeting with the label exec in two weeks. in the meantime, he hooked me up with a producer-friend of his to have some material for the next meeting.

although i have material already, said label exec wasn't really feeling my "no name brand" producers. i guess it didn't help that when he asked me who they were, i said producers on the "up and up" like me. i didn't sing to any of the tracks that i had prepared already because the label exec wanted to hear my "just sing." unprepared as I was to sing a capella, i slightly fumbled as i started in on lauryn hill's 'ex-factor.' with the assistance of nerves and not having been well prepared for this occassion i stopped somewhere around "who do i have to be" sighting "going blank" as the reason for my abruptness.

he asked me to sing something else for him - which i did, after contemplating singing one of my songs. I ended up singing my song: 'for my girls.' after i finished the first verse and chorus, the label exec said "you can sing' with slight astonishment and definite satisfaction. he also said my song was "good," which is a good thing.

shortly after complimenting me, he called the producer, telling him that i can sing. paraphrasing:

"i've got a girl here, [insert my real name here], who was one of my wife's scholars from her scholarship program. she can sing. i want you to work with her and let me know if we could/should work with her....do you have a minute? are you busy? no? okay, i want her to sing for you"

at this point i am handed the receiver and take the phone and sing her the producer. he also agreed that i could sing. yay! convo continues, the exec has the phone back now:

"so i just gave her your number. her name is [insert my real name here] - she will be calling you soon."

after they hang up, label exec tells me a bit about the producer whose name i already recognized when i read it off the sheet where his number was written. he names some names of some well recognized artists and tells me they have a studio and this producer plays so he can change keys for me, ect. good look.

so i have to call the producer on monday to discuss when and where to meet.when we first talked the producer asked me "so is [insert lable exec's name here] trying to sign you?" i respond, "that's on the table" to which he replies "so let's make that happen."

hey now!

*going to the studio with DJ OK today to record 'Despite What They Say*

in the end, i left him with my track and photos - untouched by either of us during the meeting, because it never came up. no problem though.

Saturday, February 11, 2006

Rest In Peace

J Dilla
Revolutionary Hip Hop Producer

Thursday, February 09, 2006

It's a Wrap...

These are the two pics I am taking with me to tomorrow's audition:

I wish there was airbrushing for life. Thanks Jerome and Carola for an amazing job!

*wish me luck tomorrow*

The Grammys and Congrats

So I wasn't able to watch the Grammys last night, but I did check out the award winners. I am personally happy for the following winners:

1. Johnta Austin - Co-wrote "We Belong Together" on Mariah Carey's Emancipation of Mimi. He's a talented songwriter and is the reason why Tyrese was first signed (he penned "Sweet Lady" and was bumped for a recording deal when the label saw Tyrese - they thought he's be more marketable). Johnta Austin is the brother of industry vet, Dallas Austin. He's got a record out "Ocean Park" on SoSo Def and can be heard singing the hook/bridge on "Getcha" by Jermaine Dupri.

2. Kelly Clarkson - "Best Female Pop Vocal Performance" Most people don't know it, but Clarkson has gone 5 times Platinum with her Breakaway release. I really began to take notice that she's moving up the ranks of the music industry elite, 1) I continuously listen to any single she has played on the radio 2) People around me began to notice the same thing. Don't be discouraged because Mimi didn't win this award, 2005 has been an amazing year for Clarkson - she deserved it!

3. John Legend - "Best New Artist" and "Best R&B Male Vocal Performance" He's simply the best. I will admit when I first heard John sing it was a recording of "If this World Were Mine" cover and it was terrible - I couldn't get with it. But as an artist myself, I understand that it's about finding your space or like DJay from Hustle and Flow would say your "Mode." His material is well written (only two other writers penned for his debut CD and the album was fire) and vocally he's come along way. I am very proud of him and look forward to more of his work.

4. Gorillaz - "Best Pop Collaboration with Vocals" Don't have much to say, but I really like Gorillaz. I think the concept of the group is so innovative and I love the fusion of Hip-Hop and Electronica style music. Consistently pushing the envelope...

5. Damien Marley - "Best Urban Alternative Performance" and "Best Reggae Album" I will saw that I've not heard the album yet, but "Welcome to Jamrock" was fiya. I love me some reggae.

6. Ray - "Best Compiliation Soundtrack for Motion Picture, Television and other Visual Media"
When I first saw Ray, I was amazed at how much I didn't know about that man himself. When I listened to the Soundtrack, I was amazed at how much great music I had missed out on. Albums are so much more than singles and rarely do you have great compilation records - the flow of the record and overall experience is an art within itself. I am happy the Soundtrack took home the award.

In closing, I am happy this year's Grammy Awards show recognized a wide spectrum of talent. I personally began to feel slighted when the Academy (voters) seemed to be giving away awards to glorified artists (ie, Norah Jones, Alicia Keys). I was expecting to hear that Mariah was gonna take away all of the awards. I guess it still happened in the case of U2, but something about their prevelence in music for the past several decades makes it appear well deserved and not overexposed.

*Hopefully I'll be there soon.*

24 Hours to go and still running....

While prepping for Friday's audition, I missed the Grammys. I want to hand my man a full package at my audition so I did a photo shoot with Jerome.

His girlfriend is a professional make-up artist, so she hooked me up. She does Kerry Washington's make-up for red carpets and other events. It's amazing how things have been coming together - I keep looking at how much me and the Elle B team have been able to accomplish since we really put our heads together and I it's only been by Grace!

Needless to say, I am tired as hell! The week in re-cap so far:

Monday: Party @ Larchmont
Tuesday: Studio with DJ OK to work on "Despite What They Say"
Wed: Photoshoot with Jerome D.

Tonight JD and I have to meet to select the best photos and do some retouch. Well I'm off to work...Another day, Another Dollar! Holla

*Damn, I thought I would have the night off to relax*

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Elle's Pic of the Week

My First Red Carpet...

I could have sworn that once I hit the carpet and they announced "Elle B." the photogrophers were gonna stop and stare, like "Who?"

But they didn't. It was fun. The event was a birthday party for celeb hair stylist Shirlena Allen. I heard that the party was live later on, but I am not on the level where I can party all night and wake up at 11a the next morning...although I am upset that I missed the goodie bags.

Oh well.

Tonight there are two more events: 1) Tyrese is having a pre-grammy shindig at his Studio and 2) Some pre-grammy party downtown

I'll most likely be in the studio tonight finishing up my demo tape for my GiNormous audition on Friday.


Monday, February 06, 2006

[Black History Month Spot] The ODs: Original Divas

I'd like to share with you the Original Divas: Jesse Norman, Leontyne Price and Kathleen Battle - classically trained negro women (opera) singers.

This post was prompted by a succession of occurances this past weekend:
1. Classical rendition of "Ain't a dat good news" was sung by an all-white ensemble at the Caltholic school where I performed at the Black History Mass
2. I was watching Hustle and Flow and was reminded of the church scene where the woman is singing "Change My Name"

I've known about classical Negro Spirituals since was a litle girl. My mother was classically trainined, or in other terms, learned to sing Opera. Although I wasn't, I was raised with a reverence for classical vocalists. Not until a college course on the Music of Black Americans did I realize that classical vocalist like the three named above are largely unknown - but many are unaware, that besides singing, operas, french arias, german ruders or spanish madrigals they are also the main purveyors of classical Negro Sprirituals.

Started by the Fisk Jubilee Singers in the last 1800s, adopting negro spirituals to classical form democratized "slave songs," preserved an aspect of black american history, and created a space for "black" music in America and Europe. Prior to the Fisk Jubilee Singers and similar groups, Black classical singers went unrecognized by the dominant society. And although they are not the same as "race music" (what Black music was first called when it became commercial) - they are still hugely significant to Black Music History.

I couldn't find video of a classical negro spiritual performance, but I still wanted to share the experience of Jesse Norman (she's my favorite).

Friday, February 03, 2006

In Honor of Black History Month...

I am performing at a Black History Month mass.

This Little Light of Mine (Opening Song)
Amazing Grace (Communion Song)
Lift Ev'ry Voice (Reflection)
Still I Rise (Closing Song)

I'm not Catholic, but these selections look more like a Baptist church than Jesuit Ceremony but hey it should be fun.

*k, gotta go. Have a great weekend!*

Oh and Support Black Film at the BoxOffice:

Opening in theaters today...

Something New

Copyright © 2006 Focus Features

A romantic comedy about finding love when and where it’s least expected. Kenya (Sanaa Lathan) is a beautiful career woman who has achieved great professional success but still yearns for a fulfilling personal life. Looking for that “perfect man,” she even has a checklist at the ready.

*peace, for real this time*

Thursday, February 02, 2006

Oh I Think They Like Me...

(click to enlarge)

But not THAT much. Would you pay $200 for a So So Def Afro Man, Action Figure? I wouldn't, even if it did come with a Mix CD from So So Def artists...oh wait, it does.

Watch the Commercial? Or Buy him!


For My Political Heads out there...

This following poem is composed entirely of actual quotes from George W. Bush.

Make the Pie Higher

I think we all agree, the past is over.
This is still a dangerous world.
It's a world of madmen
And uncertainty
And potential mental losses.

Rarely is the question asked
Is our children learning?
Will the highways of the internet
Become more few?
How many hands have I shaked?

They misunderestimate me.
I am a pitbull on the pantleg of opportunity.
I know that the human being and the fish
Can coexist.

Families is where our nation finds hope
Where our wings take dream.
Put food on your family!
Knock down the tollbooth!
Vulcanize society!
Make the pie higher!
Make the pie higher!

Source: Richard Thompson

Not sure where you stand on Bush? Take this quiz...
I answered: Bush/Cheney o4': Don't Change Horsemen Mid Apocolypse.

*My boss sent me both of these*

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Not Quite Paula, Simon & Randy...

So last week, I shared with you all that there may be an amazing opportunity in the wind for me. *Check out the post for more info*

Well today, I spoke with said label exec and set up an audition for next week Friday. Surprisingly, I had the crazy jitters all up to the point when he came on the line and then I was cool like I do this kinda thing everyday. I don't!

In preparation for my audition I will be focused on the following:

- Gym: Everyday
- Food: Tuna, Fish, Veggies and NO DAIRY!
- Water and Tea
- Sleeping early so that I don't need caffeine at work
- Practice, practice, practice
- Writing and Recording

I'm sure I'll continue to do these things even after my audtion next week, but it will be more deliberate daily.

We'll see what happens.

*what a great way to kick off Black History Month*

It's Black History Month

Today is February 1, 2006 - The first day of Black History Month. For my entire life, I've been in schools that have recognized and celebrated this month; and for that duration, I've been a participant in the festivities as well as spearheaded campus celebrations. But now that I am a cube-dweller in Corporate America who is striving to make her own Black History daily, I am must celebrate - on a smaller scale, but, celebrate nonetheless. Thus I am dedicating ElleB-dom in honor of the month. It may not be much, but it's recognition that I can't take for granted the history of Black America.

I hope you'll join me.

*got any Black history you think should be highlighted here @ ElleB-dom this month...leave it in the comments*