Director Ava DuVernay and cinematographer Bradford Young collaborated with the folks behind Prada’s Miu Miu collection to bring forth a short film titled The Door that honors the “transformative power of feminine bonds and life change.” This short is the fifth installment in Miu Miu Women’s Tale and stars Gabrielle Union, Alfre Woodard, Emayatzy Corinealdi (Middle of Nowhere), Adepero Oduye (Pariah) and songstress Goapele. From the stunning cinematography to the beautiful, yet symbolic garments, The Door is a must watch.
Synopsis: Characters arrive at the door of a friend in need, bringing something of themselves. Eventually, we witness our heroine ready to walk through the door on her own. The door in the film represents a pathway to who we are.
Music from The Door:
Watch Ava DuVernay’s short film titled The Door below.
Soul crooner/acoustic guitarist Raul Midón reworked Billie Holiday’s 1939 blues standard, “Strange Fruit,” into a St. James Infirmary Jazz arrangement dipped in dub and cumbia stylings by LA-based production team The Decoders.
Midón’s rich vocals carries the anti-lynching lyrics, penned by Jewish songwriter Abel Meeropol, to the same haunting place as the original. However, The Decoders’ eerie production makes this record even darker.
Stream Raul Midón’s rendition of “Strange Fruit” below.
Baltimore rapper Substantial teamed up with Steph The Sapphic Songstress to deliver this Marcus D-produced track entitled “Golden Lady.” This is such a smooth record that pays homage to Jilly from Philly (Jill Scott) while interpolating Stevie Wonder’s 1973 record “Golden Lady,” but the story behind it makes it even better.
Back in 2011, Substantial was facing the possibility of cancer. He ended up having preventive surgery and while laid up, decided to start working on a tribute album to Jill Scott, one of his biggest influences. It was his way of staying busy while healing, and at the same time to give the people their roses while they can still smell them.
Stream/download Substantial’s “Golden Lady” featuring Steph The Sapphic Songstress below.
“This is a love song, to the people who love songs.”
Rapper Trek Life dropped a kickback joint entitled “Just the Music” that makes me reminisce about the days when I used to sit on the porch, crank up the radio, and rap along with friends. Filled with a summertime vibe, this Duke Westlake-produced single reminds us why we still love H.E.R. (Hearing Every Rhyme). This track will be featured on Trek’s 14-track LP, Hometown Foreigner, set to drop April 9th.
Stream Trek Life’s “Just the Music” below.
Ashanti definitely has a crossover hit on her hands. The singer-songwriter dropped her new single entitled “Never Should Have” produced by Mansur. This broken-hearted record will be featured on Ashanti’s upcoming, fifth LP titled Braveheart. It is scheduled to drop on June 4th via her label, Written Entertainment.
Stream Ashanti’s “Never Should Have” below.
Directed by Amir Bar-Lev, Re:Generation Music Project follows five DJs (DJ Premier, Mark Ronson, Skrillex, Pretty Lights, and The Crystal Method) from different genres “as they remix, recreate, and re-imagine five traditional styles of music.” This cool approach allows them to learn about genres and records they probably would have never took the time to appreciate otherwise.
From the classical sounds of the Berklee Symphony Orchestra to that good ‘ol New Orleans jazz, these DJs create fresh tracks laced with their personal stylings and vocals from artists like Martha Reeves, Nas, Erykah Badu, and Yasiin Bey, in order “to discover how our musical past influences the future.”
After you watch Re:Generation Music Project, head over to their official film page to download the free soundtrack, featuring all the records showcased in the documentary.
Watch ”Re:Generation Music Project” below.
Duration: 1 hr. 22 min. | Year: 2012
KING is one those groups that can sing anything and it’ll still sound smooth. The neo-soul trio, comprised of twins Paris and Amber Strother and Anita Bias, premiered their new record, “In the Meantime,” produced and arranged by member Paris. Similar to their past work, this track has an ear pleasing, organic feel and shows off their musical abilities, in which their flowing vocals weaves in and out of their instrumental accompaniment. Prepare to have “In the Meantime” on repeat.
Stream KING’s “In the Meantime” below.
Brownstones to Red Dirt is a touching documentary directed by Chad N. Walker and Dave LaMattina that “captures the growth of kids from housing projects in Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn and war orphans living in Freetown, Sierra Leone who are brought together by a pen pal program that will change their lives.” Brownstones to Red Dirt will definitely pull on your heartstrings.
Watch Brownstones to Red Dirt below.