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AUGUST ALSINA AT HOUSE OF BLUES

photos by JoBrea Neal

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August Alsina returned to Houston giving a passionate performance to the the fans who packed the House of Blues on Saturday night. The soulful R&B singer performed his hits and a few spiritual songs, but nothing compared to the heartfelt performance that he gave when his mom joined him on stage.

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Girls Trip!

by Petrice Douglas

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THESE GIRLS ARE A TRIP! And the movie is FREAKING AWESOME!!!

Thank you Malcolm D. Lee and Will Packer for making my life with this movie. It is not only funny, but it flows so well. Not the regular kind of transitional flow, but one that makes you feel like you are a part of the movie.

The story chronicles friends who take a trip to New Orleans for the Essence Festival. Trying to leave their current issues behind and just have a fun-filled let it all go weekend like they did in their college days as the Flossy Posse, these girls definitely did what they set out to do. The bond and boldness is undeniable.

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Black Girl Magic mixed with extraordinary talent sprinkled with several dashes of male sexiness is a movie that no woman should go without seeing. Believe me when I tell you that if you want a good laugh, then this is THE movie you need to see.

I hope a sequel is in the works, because we really need one.

Congratulations to all the cast for doing a super job!

 

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BET GIVES A MEMORABLE EXPERIENCE

This gallery contains 7 photos.

    photos by JoBrea Neal The BET Experience and Fan Fest opened up the weekend for the awards ceremony in Los Angeles. Fans came from far and wide to get a glimpse of some of the biggest names in … Continue reading

BIG SEAN HITS HOUSTON FIRST

by Jazsmin Douglas 

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Big Sean at Revention Music Center Houston, TX – photo by JoBrea Neal 

March 17, 2017 was opening night of rapper Big Sean’s I Decided Tour. Concert goers at the Revention Music Center in Houston, Texas were introduced to an array of artistic expression and diversity. From Tokyo to Detroit and back again the performances were on point; however, there were a few moments in the show where the audience just did not connect. Comprehensively, Big Sean and his creative team provided an atmosphere of pure hip hop. By the end of the show, I realized exactly what Big Sean had decided and the revelation is marvelous. 

I have yet to discover how MadeinTYO is connected to Tokyo, but I am familiar with his music. His popular song “Uber Everywhere” was a huge hit as he opened for Big Sean. Other songs during his set were in accordance with the sound of this era, but none of the tracks were strong enough to recall them later. Except of course, his second single “Skateboard P” featuring Big Sean. None the less, MadeinTYO’s performance was refreshing. He was great with the audience and the DJ, and blended new school dance with old school performance swag. He captivated older fans as well as the hipsters. But not all concert goers were vibing, per MadeinTYO. Apparently, the crowd was a mixture of turn up fans and fans who stand and look cute. Yeah, the crowd was diverse and quite stylish on Friday, but your job MadeinTYO is to get them turnt!                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      

photo by JoBrea Neal

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Fans got quite “turned up” during Big Sean’s performance, except when he forced us to switch our emotion in the middle of the show at which point I felt a little bipolar. It wasn’t just me. I asked my photographer what song felt the most out of place during his show and she was dead on. Although the song was amazing and I could not remember the title, it would have been better positioned at the end of the show. Sean encouraged the audience and then provided time to slowly empathize with his words. The moment would have been better suited for Sean to perform such a more powerful track. He might have received the reaction he wanted rather than a disconnected and detached audience.  

 Being momentarily detached is common among family, but it does not take away from the unconditional love. The Revention Music Center was full of love! It began with MadeinTYO mentioning that his grandmother was from Houston. Then, Big Sean acknowledged his relatives in attendance who also lives in Houston, namely his aunt and a few cousins. The fun part for me, was when Big Sean recognized the audience members in attendance with their own family members. The first relationship highlighted of course being a sister! I immediately looked over at my sister as she and I began our personal hand shake in laughter! Houston’s own son of rap Travis Scott hit the stage, and things got taken up a notch when homage was paid to the legendary Pimp C.  

 Based on the artistic expression provided by Big Sean and his crew, I am positive that his decision is related to providing for his family and he is on tour encouraging others to fulfill their own destiny and do the same. The lights, videos, and images of burning windows all proved that he is an artist capable of creating intriguing concepts and visual expressions as well. Big Sean is destined to be a legend of the culture at the benefit of his fans, friends and family.   

  

Celebrities Showing Love

Super Bowl Weekend was full of great events all over our city, but the event that was collectively our favorite was The Draftkings Antonio Brown Celebrity Super Slam. It had all of the ingredients for a memorable event benefiting The Boys and Girls Club of Greater Houston. Fans filled the Joe K. Butler Sports Complex to watch notables like DJ Khaled, Doug Flutie, Porsha Williams, Snoop Dogg, and Houston’s own Kirko Bangz (that young man can really play ball) shoot it out in a fun game of basketball.

Here are a few pictures of the event.

Photos by JoBrea Neal

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WELCOME TO HOUSTON!

The teams are here and so are fans from all over the world. Houston has so many GREAT restaurants that it is hard to pick which one is best, but we want to give our guests a few that they should visit. Some of you are in areas such as Pearland, Sugar Land, and Katy so please go on-line to find restaurants in those areas. DoorDash and Uber Eats will deliver from a variety of restaurants as well.

 These are some of the places the locals go:

For Fried Chicken

Frenchy’s – 3919 Scott St., Houston, TX 77021 (fast food)

Golden Chick – 8910 Westheimer Rd, Houston, TX 77063 (fast food)

Chick-Fil-A – any location (fast food)

Raising Canes – any location (fast food)

For Brunch

Cadillac Bar (Sundays Only) – 1802 Shepherd Dr, Houston, TX 77007 (casual and mid-range prices)

MAX’s Wine Dive – 4720 Washington Ave, Houston, TX 77007 (casual and mid-range prices)

Caracol – 2200 Post Oak #160, Houston, TX 77056 (business casual mid-upscale prices)

Brennan’s of Houston – 3300 Smith St, Houston, TX 77006 (business casual upscale prices)

For Burgers

Bernie’s Burger Bus – 5407 Bellaire Blvd, Bellaire, TX 77401

Hopdoddy Burger Bar – 4444 Westheimer Rd H100, Houston, TX 77027

Lankford’s Grocery & Market – 88 Dennis St, Houston, TX 77006

Tommy’s Grill & Café – 2004 Post Oak Blvd, Houston, TX 77056

Five Guys – any location

Whataburger – any location

For Mexican/TexMex

El Tiempo Cantina – 3130 Richmond Ave, Houston, TX 77098 (casual mid-upscale prices)

GUAD Texas Chef Mex – 2925 Southwest Fwy, Houston, TX 77098 (casual and mid-range prices)

Chacho’s – any location (casual and low-range prices)

For a Variety of Options

Grand Lux Café – 5000 Westheimer Rd, Houston, TX 77056 (casual and mid-range prices)

Tommy’s Grill & Café – 2004 Post Oak Blvd, Houston, TX 77056 (casual and low-range prices)

The Cheesecake Factory – 5015 Westheimer Rd, Houston, TX 77056 (casual and mid-range prices)

MAX’s Wine Dive – 4720 Washington Ave, Houston, TX 77007 (casual and mid-range prices)

Vegan/Vegetarian Options

Ruggles Green – 2305 W Alabama St, Houston, TX 77098 (casual and low-mid range prices)

Green Vegetarian Cuisine – 6720 Chimney Rock Rd, Houston, TX 77081 (casual and low-mid range prices)

Loving Hut – 2825 S Kirkwood Rd #100, Houston, TX 77082 (casual and low range prices)

Sunshine’s Vegetarian Deli – 3102 Old Spanish Trail, Houston, TX 77054 (casual and low range prices)

Pepper Tree Veggie Cuisine – 3821 Richmond Ave, Houston, TX 77027 (casual and low-mid range prices)

True Food Kitchen – 1700 Post Oak Blvd, Houston, TX 77056 (casual and mid-range prices)

Kirko Bangz Day In Houston

by Petrice Douglas

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photos by JoBrea Neal

November 22, 2016 is officially Kirko Bangz Day in the City of Houston. Ashley Turner presented him with a proclamation during his “Back Flossin'” concert at Warehouse Live on Tuesday in front of a packed house. In true Kirko fashion not making the day all about himself, fans were treated to the concert for free with a canned food donation as part of a benefit effort with Houston community leaders. Notable local talent such as Tim Woods, DJ XO who is also Kirko’s DJ, Neekdaskittz, MC Beezy, Final Draft from Atlanta, and several others opened up the show.

Congratulations Kirko on your well deserved day!

ScHoolboy Q Blank Face in Houston

by Petrice Douglas

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ScHoolboy Q at Revention Music Center – Houston                             photographer – JoBrea Neal

 

Fans filled into the Revention Music Center for the first Texas stop of ScHoolboy Q’s Blank Face Tour.

First up – Joey Bada$$. Kicked the night off and warmed the crowd up real good.

Headliner – ScHoolboy Q. Doin’ what he do!

Groovy Tony is what we call him, and he came out blazin’ that “Gangsta” right out the gate. Tie-dye hoodie and dark shades all in tact. The crowd went crazy! I must admit that I went a little crazy myself because the music made me do it.

No over-exaggerated staging or dancers were used in his set. The simple yet very captivating stage lighting and tour logo as a backdrop was all that was needed to compliment the sound. Honestly, with lyrics like the ones ScHoolboy Q spit he doesn’t need all the extra shenanigans.

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ScHoolboy Q

Though the crowd was jumping and moshing throughout the night, I think he expected a little more. He compared us to the crowd he had a few months ago at Warehouse Live, and said that he didn’t feel that same energy. In the words of our First Lady, when they go low we go high. That was all it took to get the crowd all the way turnt up. From “Blessed” which had the best light show of the night to “Collard Greens”, all I could see were hands in the air, bodies moshing, and dancing crutches. Yes, someone had their crutches in the air like dancing batons. That’s the kind of power ScHoolboy Q gives off, and it made us feel unstoppable.

One Hell of A Duo – Blaze and Black

By Petrice Douglasphotographer - JoBrea NealBlaze and Black – House of Blues September 2, 2016

We should have listened the first time when we heard about the fusion of sounds and cosmic energy hip hop duo Blaze and Black bring to the stage. All we have to say is, “they are one hell of a duo!”

The two along with band The Artthrobs layer r&b, pop, and hip hop to create a nice palatable sound that keeps you wanting more. The lyrical flare and high energy Black exudes across the stage is infectious while Blaze’s vocals help you feel every word.

More on Blaze and Black

Don’t Believe Me Just Bite

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STOP THE PRESS RIGHT NOW! Somebody just said this burger is a vegan burger. Stop lying! Tell the truth and shame the devil.

Yep, it’s true. What you are looking at my friends is vegan deliciousness with double no-meat and all from the new love of my life Green Vegetarian Cuisine, 6720 Chimney Rock Rd., Houston, TX 77081. I went ahead and put the address and you can thank me later.

I’ve tried this restaurant three times. Once to try it out on DoorDash, once to see how the restaurant was personally, and once because the food was so freakin’ good the other two times that I had to go back again. Even people that are not vegan or vegetarian go for the fever from the flavor of what they have on the menu. The Cauliflower Hot Wings are soooo good. A tiny bit of crunch with a nice mild buffalo sauce. I’ve also had the Real Deal Enchiladas, and they ARE the real deal for real FOR REAL. I’m telling you that you will not know the not-meat is not “real” meat. I’ve tried other things on the menu, and I have not been disappointed at all. My family agrees with me that this is THE go to spot when we want to eat out and not have to worry about compromising our health for tasty food.

One word of caution – they are not open on Saturdays.