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JoJo’s Journal – Diana Ross, The Grammy Awards

February 19, 2008

picture-015.jpg Hey folks.  Just stopping by for a minute to give my take on what’s going on in the entertainment world and beyond.  And remember, it’s MY take.  Everybody has an opinion. 

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Well, lookie here the number one diva is at it again!  Diana Ross was one of the headlining acts at The 2008 Air Jamaica Jazz & Blues Festival and apparently the Jamaicans don’t like her any more.  Ms. Ross did not want her set shown on the big screens or videotaped.  The concert goers were upset at that because people in the far back couldn’t see her perform after spending their money to see someone they consider a big star.  Sadly, Ms. Ross was booed and disrespected during her entire performance.  Three of her children were sitting on the side and were visibly upset at the audience insulting their mom.  I would have felt the same.  Yes, Ms. Ross was wrong for not allowing her show to be shown on the big screens, but she is Diana Ross – The Boss. 

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I wanna talk about the Grammys

I was so happy to see Amy Winehouse perform on the Grammy Awards.  You all know that I love her and am praying for her.  I loved her performance, I loved the way the stage looked and thought the three black dudes backing her up was nice!  The entire set reminded me of the 60’s.  My white soul sista’ won a lot of awards.  I say well deserved – regardless of Natalie Cole saying Amy didn’t deserve them!  And did you notice she added her husband Blake’s name to the lyrics of both songs she performed?  She really misses her man even though it appears to me that he’s no good for her.  Some of us women just love “bad boys”……including me.  J

How great was it to have the legendary and still fabulous Tina Turner perform with the legend-in-the-making Beyonće!  I was mesmerized by Beyonce, as usual.  I must declare for the umpteenth time that Beyonce Knowles just may be the best entertainer of her generation.  The introduction she gave Tina was a wonderful homage to many of the great African-American women entertainers of our time.  And Tina Turner still has it at 70 plus years old!  (Tina claims she is 68 but that is her “entertainment” age.)   She sang two of my all time favorite Tina songs – What’s Love Got To DO With It and You Better Be Good To Me!  Loved it!  I saw an interview with Tina prior to the show and she said that Beyonće asked her to perform with her and Tina said yes.  We all got lucky on that one. 

Natalie Cole looked beautiful even though she said an ugly thing about Amy Winehouse.  I think Natalie has forgotten that in the 70’s (or perhaps 80’s) she too had a serious drug problem. We should not throw stones. 

Rihanna was good and she looked beautiful, as always.  Her song Don’t Stop The Music gets me going!  And I just love her short do! 

It was so great to see Morris Day and the Time!  Morris is timeless! 

Prince looks great.  I loved his red suit!  Does this dude ever age? 

Alicia Keyes’ talent is in the class of Stevie Wonder, Bob Dylan, Barbara Streisand….I could go on.  By the time she is in her 40’s she will be considered one of the great singer/songwriters of our time.  You just wait and see.  Her performance with the late Frank Sinatra (who I absolutely love) was okay but we’ve seen that trick done a few times before.  Didn’t Alicia look like a woman from the 40’s?  That’s timeless beauty.  I preferred her performance of her song “No One” with John Mayer.  I’ve been a fan of John’s ever since he did that skit with Dave Chappelle on The Dave Chappelle Show.  That was some funny s***!  Oh yeah, Alicia was rockin’ that straight hair!

I didn’t particularly like the sound of Fergie performing with John Legend.  Fergie didn’t sound that good, but John Legend sounded great on keys.  Sorry, Fergie. 

Damn I love Carrie Underwood!  Me and my sista/friend Charlene can’t get enough of her!  Right Char?  Carrie is my favorite country/pop singer; the best artist to come out of American Idol as far as I’m concerned.  She is also a looker – fine as she can be. 

Kanye West’s performance of the song “Hey Mama” was moving and beautiful.  I don’t know how he made it through that song.  My heart was bleeding through the entire performance.  Damn shame what happened to his mother Donda – damn shame.  And I did not like it when they played that damn music over his speech; especially when he was talking about his deceased mother.  But can someone tell Kanye to get rid of those ugly ass white day glow glasses?! 

Vince Gill’s award was presented to him by Beatle Ringo Starr, which is an honor for any musician.  I like Ringo.  And that was very cute when Vince teased Kanye “have you had that happen yet Kanye?”  Cute. 

Wait a minute….stop the presses!  Did ya’ll see the photos of Whitney Houston at Clive Davis’ Grammy party?  Can you say beautiful? Damn, even crack can’t mess with real beauty!  LOL!! 

Okay, enough on the Grammys for now – more next week.

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Artist of the Month

Al Green

One of my favorite male vocalists of all time is the legendary Al Green.  Yeah, baby, not many people alive today can bring the grits and grease the way Al can!  (No pun intended on that “grit” statement; you’ll see what I mean later.)  Al Green was born the son of a sharecropper in Dansby, Arkansas. He started performing at the tender age of nine in a quartet called the Greene Brothers.  (Years later, as a solo artist, he dropped the final “e” from his last name.)  In high school Green formed a group called Al Greene & the Creations. Two members of the Creations formed an independent label called Hot Line Music Journal. Al Greene’s debut album was released on Hot Line in 1967 called Back Up Train. In 1969 Green met band leader Willie Mitchell of Memphis’ Hi Records when Mitchell hired him as a vocalist for a Texas show with Mitchell’s band and then asked him to sign with the label. Green’s debut album with Hi Records was Green Is Blues which allowed Al to show off his powerful and expressive voice.  The album was a moderate success. The next album, Al Green Gets Next to You (1970), was a massive success that included four gold singles as Green developed his vocal and songwriting talents. And some of us remember the timeless Let’s Stay Together (1972) that was an even bigger success, as was I’m Still In Love With You (1972). Call Me was a critical sensation and just as popular at the time; it is one of his most fondly remembered albums today.

On October 18, 1974, Mary Woodson, a longtime friend of Al Green, assaulted him, then killed herself. It is believed that she wished to be more than just a friend to Al. One night she snuck into Al’s house, entered his bathroom, and with no warning, she threw a large pot of sticky boiling grits over him as he was undressed and preparing to shower. Ouch!  As Al writhed in pain, Mary ran into another part of the house and committed suicide by shooting herself.  This horrible act by someone who was very dear to him shook him to his core.  Green continued to reaffirm and grow closer to his deeply held love for God. He became an ordained pastor of the Full Gospel Tabernacle in Memphis in 1976. Al continued to record R&B but saw his sales start to slip and the critics grew steadily harsher.  From 1981 to 1989 Al recorded a series of gospel recordings, garnering eight “soul gospel performance” Grammys in that period.

Al Green continues to wow us today with his soulful voice.  I’ve only touched the surface on Al’s life.  As always I urge you to do your own research and educate yourself on one of the most gifted vocalist of our time – soul man Al Green. 

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Love and Happiness

Live life ya’ll!  Ciao!

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One Comment leave one →
  1. February 21, 2008 4:09 pm

    JoJo, you continue to surprise me with your love of “oldies but goodies” – even tho’ I surely should know better by now! As always you are right on. Tina probably melted the chandeliers!

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