Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Hey Ladies!!! Interview with AUTHENTIC, a Philadelphia-based female artist collective

I had a chance recently to catch Simone "ease" Banks & Carrie Y. T. Kholi, the founders of AUTHENTIC collective for women of color in aural and visual arts, and two of the hardest working female community-builders-movers-and-shakers in Philadelphia for an interview. Humanitarians at heart, these ladies have been shaping Illadelph's cultural landscape for years shining light on the feminine wing of the creative force.

Your name? There are two ladies under AUTHENTIC...Simone "ease" Banks & Carrie Y. T. Kholi

What do you do for a living? Simone: I'm a gallery assistant and will be pursuing my Masters in Art Administration @ Drexel University this fall. Carrie: is currently working towards her PhD. in English at Rutgers University ... and we live and breathe AUTHENTIC. We're basically trying to get as many women participating and networking so that one day AUTHENTIC will run itself.

Where do you live? Simone: I live in Philadelphia/illadelph/city of
brotherly love...whatever works! :) Kholi: lives in New Brunswick, NJ ... okkk ... really Highland Park.

How is the Philly art scene? Is live art as big as it's been in New York City?
Simone: The Philly art scene is interesting. So far I haven't seen much live art displayed during events until we, AUTHENTIC incorporated it at our events. People really liked the idea...because it displayed the practice of raw talent right before your eyes. There are relevant galleries that hold gatherings fusing visual art and music, but live art is not as well known (without actively searching) unless you are in the art community. AUTHENTIC really wants to challenge this with events that feature music and art; both live! We make events for all sub-communities to not only attend, but participate and learn something new. AUTHENTIC wants to create a live art scene in some ways similar to New York City, but also bring what's real and raw about Philadelphia to the forefront. We want to do this by working and featuring artists like yourself (whom many in Philadelphia don't know) side-by-side with some of Philadelphia's greats! We're into energy ... potential and kinetic. We're into new energy most of all...and thinking outside of, next to, above and beyond the box is how we cultivate it.

I believe that there is an artistic renaissance going on, and there are more and more female artists getting out there, making things happen. It is like a creative liberation process...would you agree?
Simone:YES! that's the reason why I started AUTHENTIC. It was more than necessary, it was vital to establish a platform for female artists to expose their skills and network with other artists. The idea of creating AUTHENTIC stemmed from writing for an online magazine that covered mostly males and after pitching the idea of doing an all female issue, AUTHENTIC was born. Kholi's love for art/music and the advancement of women is why she's my partner...working together and executing the events we've done so far is liberating! We're two powerful women, i have to say. :) We're aiming to take over Philly's art/music event at a time and bring new artistry in the process. We see the need and AUTHENTIC is how we're going to do it.

Kholi: I would have to say I absolutely see the renaissance ... I mean I feel it. I think we're living it right now. As far as the work we are doing with AUTHENTIC ... these women have been at their hustle for a very long time. We are simply providing them with new resources, new means of marketing themselves, and CONSTANTLY trying to present them to new audiences. I think the art is often our activism. The art is what we provide to the revolution because it is incredibly personal ... and often incredibly political ... and incredibly necessary.

What made you decide to found Authentic, a female creative collective and networking site? When did it launch? Simone: Well, AUTHENTIC started early 2008...our social networking site was launched this past summer. It was a great find for us because all of our members could see each other. We have artists from across the country and some in different countries. We are really growing! At first we focused on only visual artists and musicians...but now we work with and feature any female "artist" and most recently have been working with poets and writers. As women, we need to come together and I know that's cliche, but it's true. It's empowering to host all female events from visual artists to just don't see it often in Philly, so we're really presenting a new wave of thought when it comes to art/music.

What makes Authentic stand apart from other similar networking sites?Simone: everyone wants to be an AUTHENTIC chick!! ;) Nah, seriously...we're different because we have an online presence, and a physical presence. We see an artist, invite her to join, feature her on our blog; and figure out how we can
work with her during an event! We want to provide exposure and not just the kind people read about. That's how we are different.

Projects for 2009? Simone: We are currently promoting an event called De Leche, it's an all female mixer to promote resources in Philadelphia regarding domestic violence. We are also working with a venue to schedule an Art for AIDS event featuring live artists; YOU! and many others. Both events will be an all female show and fuse visual art and music.

Who are your favorite contemporary artists you follow? Simone: I love
the work of Fahamu Pecou, Lorna Williams who uses wood and paper as her medium to create portraits, Flyygirl who paints images of women and I follow your [Lichiban] work as well! I remember coming across your page and saying to myself, I have to work with her!! :)

Kholi: Most of my favorite artists are my friends honestly. I love your work. I, too, love Flygirrl's work. I love Yacira of Cocolah's sketches ... I love the work of Dayna Marie Hood, Corey Whitehead (awesome artist who knows the female body well) ... and honestly there are SO many more, I'm sure I'm forgetting people who are gonna be spicy with me later. lol. [art by Lorna Williams]

3 favorite art/music spots you would recommend for someone visiting
Simone: Well, as you know Philly is known for its underground music scene..if you find yourself in Philly on a Monday, I'd say stop
by Silk City for Back to Basics featuring King Britt, Friday night (2nd and 4th of the month) make your way to the Social Club to experience The F.I.X. which features underground artists of all sorts. Saturday...FLUID! ?uestlove, sometimes Rich Medina and others spin
here. Otherwise, Old City has a First Friday event every month and there are lots of galleries to frequent in walking distance of each other...and of course free wine! ;)

Kholi: I completely agree with Simone. Right now The F*I*X is my favorite spot because Selina Carrera and Jovi Baby are really making awesome things happen as far as underground art and music go. But I'm also a poetry fiend ... so I dig Queen of Sheba, Just Words at Dowling's, The Fuze on Fridays, even the open Mics at Pearl of Africa. They are just cool down to earth places to catch music, poetry, anything representative of artistry at its finest.

How do we find you? You can find AUTHENTIC in three places!>>.JOIN IT!>> READ IT!>> FRIEND IT!!

Monday, June 22, 2009

fREE MUSIC:: Graph Nobel :: Something 2 Die 4

I just discovered Canadian singer and songwriter, Graph Nobel, member of Idle Warship, with Talib Kweli and Res, who recently dropped her solo EP Something 2 Die 4 (produced by Malik Worthy).

My favorite of the album is “Sweet Disappointment” where Graph's distinct vocals evoke Fleetwood Mac’s Stevie Nicks' emotional power. A definite force to be reckoned with.


FROM HER BIO: Nobel whas worked with the multi-instrumentalist, producer Martin ‘Doc’ McKinney, (producer of Esthero, Res, Sting, and Hawksley Workman) who was initially skeptical of Nobel’s commitment to her music; however, upon hearing her demo tracks recorded in New York with hip hop producers Geology and 88 Keys, he agreed to work with her. Nobel became part of Black Corners collective, a collection of artists who chose a “progressive approach to music”, avoiding the boundaries of a single genre. Together, Nobel and Doc experimented with various genres including rock, hip-hop and electronica. In the process, Nobel developed a distinct sound, incorporating atmospheric guitars, hip-hop beats, heavy bass lines, samples, string arrangements and innovative programming.

Graph Nobel continued to work with Doc until 2006. In 2007 Nobel made recordings with labels Aftermath (Dr. Dre, Che Vicious, Mark Batson) and BME (Lil Jon, Daddy's Girls). In May 2008, Nobel became the third member of label Electrosoul’s rap group Idle Warship (formerly composed of Talib Kweli and Res). Nobel has also recently worked with Muja Messiah, Simon Wilcox, Pharrell Williams, N.E.R.D.. Currently, Graph Nobel is a songwriter, guitar, and drum player with Res in the band Fleetwood Black.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

THE WORLD AROUND YOU :: New CLAM issue drops

The new CLAM, a Paris-based international photography/art/design magazine is finally out (I've yet to cop my copy). CLAM is my favorite such publication, and I've been blessed to get a feature in the upcoming issue along with my fellow artists friends from Brooklyn, Waajeed, Theophilus London, Diamond Girl, Raye 6, Concep, Jelsen Jargon and Amir Ebrahimi, who photographed all of us.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Mamas love...Codebreaker Feat. Kathy Diamond by (Jimmy Edgar Remix)

goodbye winter, welcome FIRE
 by Codebreaker Feat. Kathy Diamond by  (Jimmy Edgar Remix)

WORDS OF INSPIRATION from Elizabeth Gilbert

Elizabeth Gilbert, the author of the international bestseller Eat, Pray, Love, muses on the impossible things we expect from artists and geniuses -- and shares the radical idea that, instead of the rare person "being" a genius, all of us "have" a genius. It's a funny, personal and surprisingly moving talk. Came from TED via the wonderful Ashley Mui.

Mama wants....Beauty School Dropout accessories!

I can never have enough of accessories...they dress, highlight and accent curves and edges. I've been rocking one of these fresh earrings courtesy of Beauty School Dropout design.  Thank you!

You can see the crop and purchase your own pair on etsy.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

GeogiaAnneMuldrow on FRESH SELECTS!!

It seems FRESH SELECTS gets everything first.
Check out the newest on the site today:
>>>"Got another world debut for you guys today - this time its yet another from the multi-talented, Georgia Anne Muldrow, with an exclusive sneak peak into her upcoming solo album, Umsindo. The album is a dedication to the African ancestors (Umsindo means “sound” in Zulu) and the song I have for you today, entitled “E.S.P.,” is a heartfelt tribute to her partner Dudley Perkins’ daughter, and the ancestors that live on within her. Musically, Umsindo is a return-to-form of sorts, for those of us who were lucky enough to hear Georgia’s pre-Worthnothings demo/sampler - this is her closest work to that since then, but with all the added growth and upped production skills to boot." <<FRESHSELECTS.NET

Calling in sick...

I know there needs to be a balance, work vs play, but on the real.. I'm feeling this philosophy. Im sick of the GRIND. FUCK WORK. Holler if you hear me!

Check out this vid from Cubic Zirconia, and the remix cd art work by the homie reppin Minneapolis and Burlesque of North America, Mike the 2600 King.

For more info about the release check out DISCOBELLE.

Also check out the new newsletter from Burlesque of North America HERE. Launches TODAY!

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Mamas love...KOVAS :: Wax On Wax Off

Watch the KOVAS Wax On Wax Off Video, then tape yourself doing your own version. Battle everyone around the world to see who can be the most creative and innovative!! The Beat Freaks & KOVAS are watching. Show ‘em what you got!! Read more about how to enter on

Mama wants...DimePiece Summer ‘09 aka "Plastic City"

i'm loving the new DimePiece collection! Check for more on

Saturday, June 6, 2009


this video is off the hook! i need to find someone who'd animate my characters!!

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Tonight!!! SOUTHPAW------

Ladies Love The Breaks -
Autism Awareness Fundraiser @ Southpaw
Ladies Love the Breaks
Autism Awareness Fundraiser

June 4th @ Southpaw in BK - 9pm -1am / 8 with RSVP & 12 w/o - RSVP@LADIESLOVENYC.COM


Revive Da Live Presents:

Music By:

Live Art, Photography and Silent Auction - MarthaAlicia, Mike Schreiber, VIK and Noelle Theard

We are participating in Walk Now for Autism to help find a cure for autism. Please join me in my fight to make a difference in the lives of the more than 1 million Americans living with autism today.

Mama wants.. Jungle gurl!

Damn, this line is so damn hot, it got me down of the floor doing crunches to prep my body for the beach. I love everything about it. These ladies are doing it.... just wish they'd send some of those Bikinis on over to the BK ladies of Wronglips! Check for yourself: JUNGLE GURL!!!!
And close your jaw fellas, this is for the ladies...

Wish I could go : ( THIS SAT!!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Zaki Ibrahim X King Britt remix " Money" preview..

Zaki Ibrahim has been blowing minds with her amazing voice, powerful message and beautiful soul. With her recent release, Electica, she has been creating alot off buzz, and was even nominated for R&B/Soul Recording Of The Year at the 2009 Juno Awards. Keep you eyes and ears ready for her rature.
Check out this video preview of the track "Money" remixed by the one and only King Britt. Holla!!!

Make sure you grab the full album that dropped in May, released by Red Ink Music. You can grab it and check out more on her release on Giant Step.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Mamas loves Zap Mama

Now, you KNOW mama loves some Zap Mama! And she's at it again...
Her newest release, ReCreation, dropped May 26th and it's
first single, "Hello To Mama" has linked up with a non profit organization called CARE that deals with issues of maternal health with women around the world. All of the iTunes purchase proceeds will go to CARE, so please support!
Check out the video: Hello To Mama....