Monday, 23 January 2012

Michael's Oscar Race

So Oscar season is upon us for another year and nominations will be announced tomorrow for Hollywood's self congratulatory night. In the best actor race safe predictions are George Clooney The Descendants, Jean Dujardin The Artist, Brad Pitt Moneyball, Gary Oldman Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy and Leonardo DiCaprio J Edgar. I really hope Michael Fassbender gets nominated and if he does I hope he wins. Everybody loves George Clooney, by all accounts he seems to be a great human being and a gorgeous man, I think he'll probably win but I'd like to see Michael get it. His performance in Shame is amazing and brave. He possesses astonishing depth and the ability to depict the humanity, pain and fragility of a character,sometimes without saying a word. My favourite irish man's manly delights are just that, delightful. Brooding intensity, rugged, scruffy masculinity and uh, the stupendous talent. Plus I just wanted another excuse to post gratuitous pictures of him and there'll be more of that.

The best actress race should be interesting. The money's been on Viola Davis for The Help for a while but suddenly Meryl nabbed the award for her Iron Lady portrayal of Margeret Thatcher at The Golden Globes. I like them both, they were in Doubt together and both were remarkable in that film. Viola Davis is a revelation and a scene stealer. She stole her scene with Meryl in Doubt and to do that playing opposite one of the best actresses in history is no small feat. Meryl is incredible but it would be brilliant to see Viola get it. She's been underrated for ages. The phenomenal Tilda Swinton could throw a spanner in the works and win for We Need To Talk About Kevin. Love Tilda and her kookiness. I'd also love to see Adepero Oduye get a nod for Dee Rees gutsy flick Pariah. It's always nice at The Oscars when an outsider wins from leftfield. And Steve McQueen should get a nod in the Best Director category for Shame, whether the often predictable oscars has the balls to acknowledge it remains to be seen. All will be revealed...

Update:So the Oscars played it safe(as they always do) and didn't give Steve McQueen or Michael Fassbender a nom in the Best Director and Best actor categories, such a shame. Now that Michael's out of the race, it would be great to see Gary Oldman get it. He's an amazing actor but my money's on gorgeous George.

Sunday, 22 January 2012

Art On The Brain

Hat tip to The Girl at The Bookshop blog and The Bowtie Life.

The Cool

Being the rainbow inclusive chick that I am, here's a little sexy white dude swagger late into the weekend. Hat tip to Fuck Yeah Menswear, The Girl at The Bookshop blog and the Claremont Estate. Loving the fierce, poetic, slang infused writing on Fuck Yeah Menswear.

Slice:Hilary Swank

I love this image of actress Hilary Swank on the beach. Great actress, rocking body.

Crushed:Harry Belafonte and Dorothy Dandridge

Harry Belafonte and Dorothy Dandridge in the sublime Carmen Jones 1954. "Blow on em sugar." Unforgettable. Hat tip to Vintage Black Glamour.

Watch List:Lana Del Rey

US singer Lana Del Rey's album drops on January 30th and I can't wait to get a hold of my copy. I discovered her music last year having heard Born To Die and Video Games and I've been eagerly anticipating the album for a while. There's a lot of buzz about her and for me the hype is justified, I think she's an astounding talent. Her voice is cinematic and dark, she's cited Nancy Sinatra as an influence and you can hear it. I love artists like her and Florence Welch because their music works on so many different levels, it transports you and takes you to several spaces, sometimes all within one track. Not many singers are capable of that. Oh yes, I predict many a movie soundtrack featuring Lana's songs in the future. And I know she comes from money, some people seem to have a bee in their bonnet about that but who cares? She has the talent and that's what matters. She looks great too, for some reason she reminds me of Veronica Lake and certain actresses of that period.

Saturday, 21 January 2012

Vault:Vintage Drum

1950's and 60's archives from South Africa's legendary Drum Magazine. Celebrating 60 years of success.

Poster Boy:Willy Cartier

Model and dancer Willy Cartier has caused a bit of a stir in the fashion world and you can see why. The french model is mind blowingly beautiful, with his androgynous ethnic looks he could be an Apache indian from a different time. Willy is actually a dancer but a friend of his took him to a model agency because she thought he was way too gorgeous to not model. He was signed immediately and the rest is history. He's modelled for Givenchy, Benetton, Vogue, Arena Homme and many others. He's been sought after by photographers like Francois Rousseau, Justin Wu and Rosa Rendl. Willy juggles modelling around dance. I think he's unique, his hair and style are great. He has an other worldly sensibility. Willy has said that he's Senegalese, Vietnamese and French, so a mix of french, black and asian. I think he's stunning.Hat tip to The Smithian.

Friday, 20 January 2012

R.I.P: Etta James

Blues legend Etta James has died aged 73 following her battle with Leukemia. She's best known for the mesmeric At Last and I'd rather go blind. Etta battled a heroin addiction but she went on to win six grammys and be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Beyonce played her in the movie Cadillac Records. Wow, everyone's time comes. I remember her sublime voice and hilarious rants. She was a spunky woman and a true talent, they don't make em like this anymore. R.I.P queen.

Black Boheme 1

Fela Kuti. The king of afrobeat was a musical genius and a God. He was a political activist and voice of the people, we Nigerians are very proud. Fela was all about music, debauchery and sticking two fingers up at corrupt governments. Fela had many wives who lived with him in a commune like environment, the shrine.

Andre 300. The wacky, colourful Outkast frontman and father of Erykah Badu's first son Seven is one of my favourite people on the planet. He's so unique and I think he'd be perfect to play Jimi Hendrix in a movie. He even looks like Jimi!

Jimi Hendrix. The legendary rocker died young but his amazing music lives on. The fearless talent left America for British shores where he found his true musical calling and global stardom. I think Jimi's version of All Along the Watchtower is one of the best records ever.

Cree Summer. Actress, musician and all around cool alternative chick. Cree and her equally cool pal Lisa Bonet are two of the hotest milfs around.

Jean Michel Basquiat was an American artist, musician, poet and producer. His father was Haitian and mother Puerto Rican.He started as a grafitti artist and was at the forefront of the Neo expressionist movement. Immensely talented, Basquiat's tale is a tragic one, another artist who died at the age of 27. He was championed by Andy Warhol and dated Madonna but pressure, struggles with depression and a fatal addiction to heroin resulted in a heroin overdose in his art studio in New York.

James Baldwin. The writer, essayist, playwright, social critic and political activist was breaking boundaries in the 50's and 60's as a gay, black writer. Disillusioned with the US and the way black people were being treated during that period, Baldwin moved to Paris but was actively involved with the Black Panthers. I read Another Country some years back and it blew my mind. Superb writer, I have most of his books, he was a remarkable talent.

Zoe Kravitz. Well with parents like Lisa Bonet and Lenny Kravitz what would you expect? The beautiful, quirky madmoiselle is steadily building quite the acting resume and like her mother quite the eye for interesting, glorious men. Even when Zoe looks like she's fallen out of bed, not showered and flung on random clothing, she manages to still look effortlessly cool. I like everything about her. Who says black chicks can't do grungy and sexy?

Neneh Cherry. Girl crush alert. The stunner and alternative priestess of the London hip hop scene in the 80's rocks in every way. She even lived in a commune in Sweden as a kid. How's that for Bohemian? Hey Neneh, show me your buffalo stance.

Esperanza Spalding. What a name and what a woman. The multi instrumentalist, jazz bassist and singer is a virtuoso.

Erykah Badu. The singer and muse is a godess. No black bohemian list is complete without Badu. She of stupendous talent and indescribable allure, she who casts witch like spells on men that don't know what hit them until they're out of it. Just ask Andre 3000, Common and Q Tip. She even manages to be ridiculously beautiful bald. Unbelievable.

Rick James. Oh my God the boots! The boots are something else, so incongrous it's genius. "Cocaine is a hell of a drug." You'd know Rick! Oh and Super Freak is awesome.

Saul Williams is one of my favourite spoken word artists, infact he's a legend on the scene. I had no idea that he was married to actress Persia White for ages. What a cool couple.

Which leads me to Persia White! The tatooed actress and musician starred in the popular show Girlfriends.

Corrine Bailey Rae. The lovely chanteuse has gotten better and better in my opinion. A little Brit Bohemian for you. Her second album was darker and I think she has a mesmeric quality when you watch her sing live.

Of course Lenny Kravitz had to be on this list. You know all about the sexy rocker and father of Zoe Kravitz, Dilf! (That's dad I'd like to f***).

Which leads me to his former partner and mother of his child, actress Lisa Bonet. Exquisite creature, epitomises the kind of free spirited sensibility I love, plus she's married to Jason Momoa. She's still making it rain.

Musician Janelle Monae. I adore Janelle and her kookiness, she's an artist, dancing outside boxes and I love that about her.

Singer Ben Harper, like his fusion of old school style soul and folk. Love his version of Sexual Healing, not quite as much as the original but close.

Playwright and screenwriter Suzan Lori Parks is a phenomenal woman. She won the 2002 Pulitzer Prize for Drama for her play Topdog/Underdog starring the awesome Mos Def and equally awesome Jeffrey Wright. She also received the MacArthur Foundation Genius Grant in 2001.

Comedian, writer, actor and dude of geeky, quirky cool Wyatt Cenac. Dream husband alert times ten.
Singer, songwriter, guitarist and producer Raphael Saadiq is the king of reinvention. He was a member of Tony! Toni! Tone! and has just continued to evolve and collaborate with some amazing artists.

I love bohemians, they encapsulate a certain unconventionality and free spiritedness I adore. It's about a way of life and of course many artists are bohemians and I use the term artist as a wide umbrella to include writers, actors, musicians etcetera. And what of the black bohemian? They're not as illusive as some might think, infact there many many out there but perhaps they're not regarded in that light and when they are, they are often labelled a little weird. I say embrace the strangeness, destination bohemia. The Natural Idealist does a great post on the four archetypes of a bohemian.
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