‘The Bridge’ chanteuse Melanie Fiona is definitely crossing her fair share of promo paths in support of her upcoming LP. Most recently spotted on The Recording Academy’s “5 Questions With” series, the up-and-coming diva dished on everything from her Grammy nominations to her sophomore studio release ‘The MF Life’ (due October 25).
If you thought the set pics from Kelly Rowland‘s ‘Lay It On Me’ video shoot were hot tamale, wait till you see the action in motion!
Our friends over at Hip Hollywood were on set, and got the good good on all the day’s happenings – including Rowland and her troop of dancers getting down to the Anthony Burrell/Frank Gatson choreographed routine.
Traipse the political terrene and anyone not living under a rock has seen the last couple of years spawn unprecedented progress in gay rights period, let alone in the Pop musical landscape. Lady Gaga, Jessie J, Ricky Martin, and Adam Lambert are just a few of the openly bi or gay stars who are pushing an envelope (arguably) signed and sealed by Melissa Etheridge, George Michael, and Boy George before them. But while Pop is busy pushing an envelope, hip hop maybe busy hiding it, sweeping it under the taboo throw rug. For while the male-dominated industry has embraced ‘openly’ bisexual rapstress Nicki Minaj, that embrace may border more on fantasy than respect. This, of course, would open up the argument that women who openly flaunt alternative lifestyles are more easily accepted than men.
Regardless, in a land where hyper-masculinity is often used to denote (and sometimes disguise) one’s ‘true’ hip hop identity, those who do not succumb to the stereotype are often branded ‘gay’. There are few R&B male singers who are relevant that haven’t had the title accompany their name at one period of time. So, we’ve already asked you:
‘Will Hip Hop ever accept an openly gay/bi male rapper or singer”. And we, as ever, appreciated your feedback. But now, let’s twist it. That Grape Juice wants to know:
Why, when other genres are beginning to embrace being ‘out’, does Hip-Hop not?
‘Would you still support your favorite rapper/singer if he or she came out of the closet’?
You voted in your thousands, all in support of who you believed deserved the title of Rap’s Reigning Emperor.
In a list which included the likes of both The Game and Kanye West, Rappers of both sexes were included to pay homage to the plethora of both male and female Rappers whose artisty has both shaped and influenced the way the world sees Rap/Hip Hop music to day.
Now, find out who YOU decided was most deserving of this title below…
For all the social strides towards equality, the topic of homosexuality remains taboo in many an arena – not least in Hip-Hop.
Indeed, despite living in an era where displays of sexuality are as flagrant as ever, such showings in Urban music are almost exclusively of the hetrosexual (and often, misogynistic) persuasion.
Do such practices point to same-sex relations being non-existant in the Hip-Hop diaspora? Of course not. However, what is potently underscored here, is Hip-Hop’s willing silence on topics of the rainbow persuasion. Particularly when it pertains to artists active in the hyper-masculine field.
What’s bothersome for many, however, is the genre’s continued embrace of homophobic lyrics and images. Images which perpetuate the ideology that to be gay is to be ‘less’ than a man.
And yet for many industry and cultural analysts, such a stance is as ironic as ironic can be. For, the very industry at the heart of discussion is dominated by those of the gay persuasion. From make-up artists, to managers, to label execs, to – of course- artists themselves. Rapper the Game indeed made no mistake when he declared“Beyonce really should have sung, who run the world? Gays”. Well, at least when it comes to any such discussion relating to the music world.
As such, in our drive to continually push the envelope, That Grape Juice TV brings you a telling segment from Byron Hurt‘s 2007 documentary ‘Hip Hop: Beyond Beats & Rhymes’.
In this riveting piece, Hurt probes Hip-Hop’s homophobia and undercover displays homo-erotica in the videos and images of some your favourite rappers.
Singer/actress Jennifer Lopez delivered a casual look on the cover of this month’s US Weekly Style Issue.
Generating excitement within her fan base earlier this month with the surfacing of images from her ‘Papi’ video shoot, readers of the Style Issue will find advice from the entertainer on a number of issues.
From shopping on a budget to how she feels fans can achieve the styles and looks of their favorite stars.
It’s been a long time coming, but change has finally come for Kelly Rowland‘s video predicament.
The R&B diva is set to thrill fans with not one, not two, but three videos – all shot this week.
First up is the much anticipated clip for ‘Lay It On Me’. Shot yesterday, the Sarah Chatfield and Frank Gatson directed clip sees the 30 year old stunner crank up the sexy and play with an elephant. Pics of which you can peep, via Rap Up, above and below.
The visual for ‘Here I Am’s first European offering ‘Down for Whatever’ shoots today, while Rowland is set to appear in the clip for Verse Simmons’ ‘Boo Thang’ – which she features on tomorrow.