FILM: Young, Gifted, and Grinding

Filmmaker Ndrika Anyika just dropped the first episode of her docu-series feature ‘Young, Gifted and Grinding’ a docu-series that explore a number of topics in relation to Black British enterprise and entrepreneurs. It was a pleasure to be part of this project nothing like working a night shift and having a full day of filming so it was the perfect labor of love. Also thankful to share my musical love and get my Raphael Saadiq on (Insecure) as the music supervisor for the series.

Ndrika describes the docu-series.

Young, Gifted, and Grinding focuses on innovative black entrepreneurs in Britain who are carving out opportunities for themselves and turning their passion into profit. The themes of which are: The Hair Industry, New Media, The Art Industry and Publishing. The first installment in the docu-series focuses on female entrepreneurs in the lucrative black hair industry, which in 2014 was reported as being worth £5.2 Billion of which black women accounted for 80% of the hair product sales. And will premiere at the University of Sheffield on 14th October. Yorkshire based film director, Ndrika Anyika, said: “I wanted to make Young, Gifted and Grinding a platform to highlight the variety of ways black entrepreneurs in Britain are flourishing. The project was also an opportunity for me to hear stories first-hand from people across the country who inspire myself and many other young entrepreneurs.”

Twitter / Instagram /Facebook @ndrikaanyika

Check out the Trailer below and catch the first in the docu-series on ‘Hair‘ on the same Youtube Channel.

FILM: Idris Elba 007

Just over a year or so #teamidriselba have been vying for him to take on the role of 007 after Daniel Craig, at the start of 2015 Elba made his first response in regards to claims with a funny instagram picture.

On the 1st of September 15 Anthony Horowitz a writer of the Bond novels was quoted saying that Mr Elba was ‘too street’ to play James Bond and moved on to say “Idris Elba is a terrific actor, but I can think of other black actors who would do it better,” twitter soon went into a frenzy and Horowitz later issued an apology but what we love more is Elba’s response (see attached image below). The Definition of a Classic Man.

Only time will tell if Elba will surely take on the role of James Bond, personally am still waiting on Luther to get back on our screens.

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Maureen Muthoni

@MISSMUSO

MUSIC: #MCM No.1

So I’ve decided to launch something new wait for it….. #MusicCrushMonday yes it come to me clear and straight, well most of my #MCM’s tend to be musician so why not mix it up and also get to share some of the fantastic music am currently listening to …. I hope this segment works beyond today, so the first official Music, Power and Politics #MCM isssss drum rollll…… Blitz The Ambassador.

Time away is always a great time to finally think evaluate, explore some of my fears and get to amerce myself in fantastic music my current listen is Blitz The Ambassador I can’t place when I first come across his music but his name was always circulating among the blogs I follow so this was a long overdue clear listen his mix in visual media commands your full attention, (as a side note I would be interested to see what him and John Akomfrah can cook up) but yup to the main point he has so far been the newest music addition and without aiming to sound cheesy he’s  a breeze, his smooth conscious and one artist that can actually pull me to explore my own musical desires but I digress once again press play enjoy the vibes and visuals for his album ‘Native Sun

Maureen Muthoni 

@MISSMUSO 

Power: Living Life

So I have been absent and at times missing in action when it come to blogging but we are back and hopefully better, ready to share the wonderful material that has been held back. I have a few things that went on during my break for example the Anti-Rape Summit that took place in Excel I come across some amazing Kenyan artists Mumbi and Wangechi and their producer Kevin Provoke; it was a wonderful time and as always with musicians turned to talk about the state of Kenyans music and the lack of radio support that artist receive, with all that talk I had to support the artists and left with both albums from the ladies. Mumbi’s EP and Wangechi’s LP.

L-R. Marvin, Mumbi, Wangechi, Kevin P, Kevin O.

Secondly I had a fantastic opportunity to take part in a pageant that had the sole aim of promoting charities in Kenya to people living in the United kingdom, a chance for the Diaspora youth to connect with projects back in their homeland. I choose the Sarakasi Trust a foundation that aim to help young adults establish themselves in the creative arts dance and music, while visiting in Nairobi in 2013 I had a chance to attend two shows at the Sarakasi Dome and was amazed at the talent that was showcased so it made perfect sense to choose them.

photo 2-2 Processed with Moldiv

 

Review: 12 Years a Slave

12 Years a Slave
Production year: 2013
Runtime: 133 mins
Directors: Steve McQueen
Cast: Benedict Cumberbatch, Brad Pitt, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Michael Fassbender, Paul Dano

‘12 Years a Slave’ was one film that I was close to denouncing and vowing never to watch. Why you may ask? Just like ‘Avatar‘(of which I have never watched) each year produces the ‘must watch’ film the one film that we all race to the cinema to view so that we can have a moment to look up from our phones and tablets and share a conversation, moreover this is a film about a heavy subject the unspoken sins of slavery bought to light by a British Director.

Aside from all that I watched the film on the 12th on January, made the trip to the cinema with two other friends and situated myself in the Vue Xtreeme to experience the Oscar tipped movie, the cinema audience as many others would mention was predominantly Caucasian, that only made some scenes that a group let out a nervous laugh seem misplaced. I cannot say that I loved any aspect of the film am someone who is drawn in by cinematography but I didn’t feel that the film visually took me anywhere the opening sequence editing being the only part that challenge the liner development of the piece. Chitewel Ejiofor (Solomon Northup) performance is somehow overshadowed by Lupita Nyong’o (Patsey) in the press so I found that I spent a longer time waiting to see her on screen while yearning for Solomon Northup to regain his freedom.

At the end we sat and was disappointed that I felt that the piece hadn’t stirred up anything in me, at no point was I moved to tears (while my friend sitting to the right of me shed a few) nor did I feel that McQueen had moved me to aspire to tell the slave narrative; having said that it does not mean that I am removed from the reality of the history that the images depicted; however violent and harsh speak to the struggles of the slaves who were sold into the trade. One question did arise why did we not see any real attempt to escape, were all the slaves content with slavery being their ultimate fate?
In all this was a chance to really unmask and take the slave narrative on film to another level ultimately the picture produced amazing characteristic representation but failed to unearth an in-depth well rounded depiction of the emotional turmoil that Solomon Northup encountered in his years in slavery.

I guess the problem I have is taking a real story and making it into a cinematic picture a form of escapism and entertainment. What is ‘12 Year a Slave’ purposes? To educate on the history of slavery or to create Hollywood stars and win awards? Or do the two come hand in hand in this case?

Just a TED Talk

Super happy, proud and excited that this happened Just a Band one of the best out of the beautiful nation of Kenya graced the TED Talks this month of June in Edinburgh and bought some needed sunshine and colour.

Described as the creators of the “Africans first viral video” the boys definitely show and express how talent and consistent work can place you on a global stage. As we wait on the TED Talks Video we can surely enjoy the video that helped in getting them there here’s  ‘Ha- He ask yourself

“Are you a dreamer?”

Just a Band

 

Just a Band

Just a Band latest released ‘Probably for Lovers‘ is a solid album and worth the purchase and listen… go gerrrttt itt.