The War Against & Within Azealia Banks.

I logged onto Twitter today and saw on my timeline that people were either rejoicing or simply content that Azealia Banks' Twitter account was suspended. This came after a beef fueled week from the artist which included racist remarks to Ex boy band member, Zayn Malik and overall mean comments Disney actress Skai Jackson. By all means, we know this isn't the first beef Banks has ever had. She literally has some kind of beef or goes on some kind of rant at least twice every season. This behavior has become normal for us to see from her.

There are other issues that the Harlem bred creative is facing as well. Such as body image, which caused her to begin bleaching her skin and maybe even get breast implants. Then there is also her political views which include her support of Donald Trump for president-do I have to explain why that's problematic?! And I'm sure there are a slew of other issues that she faces not only as an artist but as a human being. And because of that, I sympathize with her.

Yes, I feel for Azealia Banks. I understand her anger and her pettiness. For me, when I truly dissect her antics and overall opinion about things, there is some true logic and emotion behind it. I don't agree with her approach 99.9% of the time when she is trying to get her point across but I get it.

Put yourself in her shoes if you dare to fit in them: 24 year old dark skin black woman who is a singer/songwriter/rapper based in America. Now at first glance, that may seem like nothing much to consider but every word in that description is something. Those words can represent barriers to opportunities, being discredited for your creativity and originality-and just overall oppression. Azealia's artistic journey has not been an easy one. She's had major label drama, whether it was her fault or not, and her talent and innovation has gone overlooked by so many due to unauthentic competition. *cough* Iggy *cough* So as you metaphorically stand in her shoes, you want to tell me that you wouldn't even be a slight bit angry and frustrated at what's going on?

And no, her behavior doesn't help her situation but we can't overlook where all this negative energy stems from. She is fed up and sick of how the industry and maybe even the world is treating her. And this industry isn't kind to anyone but because no two artists are created equally, everyone deals with it differently. Think about it, Azealia could be strung out on drugs and alcohol, or even doing self harm but she's not. At least we haven't heard that she is, which leads me to another point.

We don't know everything. About anyone. Her situation can be 100x worse than what we think it is. She could be facing some real life pain and all we see is her dealing with it on Twitter in the form of bullying others for whatever reason. So you think you know her and then you bash and judge her. We are so good at knowing our own problems and how to hide them as if others around us aren't doing the same. When it comes to these celebrities, you only know what is reported or what they choose to display on social media but I'm sure that's not even half of their stories.

So do I see her behavior as a cry for help? Yes. Is she responsible for her actions and should be held accountable then? Yes. I've been following Banks' career since she dropped her first music video and I genuinely love her work. And she is undeniably talented. I don't think this is a phase but a war within herself and I know that she is fighting to see brighter days whether she is aware of it or not. But as a fan and fellow black woman just trying to find her way, I refuse to rage war against her. She needs support, not for her current actions but for the betterment of her future, -and even some prayers. I truly believe that she and her situation can change for the better. But we'll see if it happens when it happens.

'Always More, Never Less'-Es


Zoe Saldana as Nina Simone Makes Me Itch.

So awhile ago, we got the tragic news that Zoe Saldana would be playing the legendary Nina Simone in a biopic. And once the photos of Saldana in full hair and makeup surfaced, people flipped! And they had every reason to. The film, Nina, is set to play in theaters in April and today we got a trailer.

I recently watched the awesome Netflix documentary on the legend titled What Happened, Miss Simone?. Not only was it truly insightful on the journey that Simone took musically but also on her life in general. You even had Nina speaking for herself throughout the documentary. It was just so well done and please check it out if you haven't.

But watching this trailer honestly made me itch. It seems like some horrible spoof of Nina that even SNL wouldn't do. Clearly this "biopic" (I don't even feel right calling it that) is based on a certain period of Simone's life and her relationship with her assistant-turned-manager, Clifton Henderson. The acting seems tacky, the hair and makeup on Zoe Saldana is not even just horrific but lowkey disrespectful.

Everything about this is tacky. The period of Nina Simone's life that the film is based on seems interesting, I just wish they went about it in a more proper way, like actually casting a black woman who resembles Nina. And a major thing to note is that Nina Simone's daughter and her estate did not and are not supporting this film. So I'm not even sure if they are using original songs from Simone. The singing sounded off too. This is just all bad. Yuck.

'Always More, Never Less'-Es


The Moment Rihanna Became "ANTI" Rihanna.

Rihanna is a born again pop star and this album is her celebrating that evolution. 

 When I first listened to this album, my initial reaction was,"So we waited forever for Rihanna to essentially drop a basic ass mixtape? Ugh." I didn't get the vision. I didn't initially see her intentions with this album. It was more than just an album of new Rihanna music that is suppose to top the charts and be played on the radio non stop.

Furthermore on my first listen, I felt like the album lacked the energy that we typically get from Riri. Like you get stadium size energy from some of her songs. Even if its a ballad. And because of that, a lot of the songs on the album felt the same to me. They felt lazy which translates to mediocrity to me. So like I said before, this was just a basic ass mixtape to me that we had to wait like two yrs for.

50+ listens later, the album started to grow on me. As the album grew on me I started to understand the vision of the body of work and how intentional Rihanna (and her team of course) were with the execution of the music and the visual components to this album. From the artwork incorporating a photo of Rihanna as a child and the custom poems in Braille in the booklet of the physical copies (are there physical copies out yet?) to the entire Samsung driven site (antidiary.com) where like every week, a new interactive room of Rihanna's world would open. By the way, not only was that a big deal as far as marketing goes-it was just simply creative and dope as hell.


I Miss Obama, too.

Doug Mills/The New York Times
Recently, I was on Twitter and was checking out the trending topics like I always do. Saw that "I Miss Barack Obama" was the top trending topic. And of course, I kinda freaked out. I'm like, "What happened? Where is he? OMG!"

But it was just the title of a popular New York Times article by David Brooks that a lot people could relate to, including me. I Miss Barack Obama didn't recognize the great attributes of our current president but also how just messy the presidential candidates.  The 2016 election has been a real circus with both parties and it will have even Obama haters nostalgic of the good ol' days when Obama was running and his time in the White House.

Besides being the first president of color, Obama has truly been iconic as a leader of the free world. America is yet to be perfect but you have to admit, it got a whole lot better under his administration. Well, people will have strong opinions about that but um, change surely came and hope is still in the air.

So as the wild primaries continue, sit back and reflect on one of the best presidents this country will probably ever see.

'Always More, Never Less'-Es

E-Spring Cleaning.

 This more of a FYI than some think piece.

I know we still got some weeks of winter left (damn groundhog) but I'm getting a head start on my cleaning. Cleaning out my email inbox that is.

Even with me not writing a single post for months, my inbox was still getting packed with new submissions daily. And because I kind of want to start this next chapter of this blog on a clean slate, I'm am deleting all unread messages. It's a lot to go through, so everything is just going to go.
With that said, starting this FRIDAY (2/ 19), I will begin to read, listen, and maybe even post some submissions. So hold the emails!

I'm trying to be back for good y'all, we gotta be organized! lol

All blog submissions regarding music, fashion, technology, or anything awesome can be sent to Es@thegirltheycalles.com!
'Always More, Never Less'-Es


Because that girl is now this woman...

Shine 2 by DAWNOKORO

Well hi there! Long time, I know. And I know, you're sick of my "comebacks"-I am too. But my long drawn hiatuses are for good reason. Growth. I started this blog at the tender age of 17 and I poured so much of myself into it and all my other offline entertainment endeavors that I lost the true essence of Es Famojure. So I took time off to find that essence of self, found it, and here we are.

Hopefully, you follow me on social media so you could see that I haven't been completely off the grid. In fact, I've been quite active. My career and personal life have taken some interesting and exciting turns. I've been successful, I've failed. I've been challenged, I've been rewarded. Basically, I've been living life as best as a 20 something year old black working professional in the South can. And yes, all those details are important.

This blog will evolve with me. I want this blog to display, and celebrate in a way, the complexity of Es Famojure. There will still be plenty of music on here because I always have an opinion about it-all of it. Yet, there will be some other topics discussed on here, such as business & innovation, film, spirituality, relationships, -maybe even politics. I want to talk about it all. My voice, my experience is unique enough to talk about it all and still not fit a basic ass mold of another chick with a blog.

So let's not see this as a comeback but as a new chapter. The story continues, keep reading.

Find me, then follow me on Twitter, Instagram, & Snapchat: EsFamojure
'Always More, Never Less'-Es


Spotify's Found Them First.

Anyone who knows me knows I love me some Spotify! And for good reasons because not only are you able to stream full albums and more from your favorite known artists, but they make it super easy and fun to discover new artists on the rise. 

A lot of the artists I listen to religiously now, I discovered through Spotify and their curated playlists, which they have thousands of. So Spotify probably realized this and found a way to please the inner snotty hipster in all of us. You know the part of you that always feels the need to tell people you were listening to an artist before everyone else was. That one.

Spotify's Found Them First is fairly simple. It's a site you log into with your Spotify login and it goes through your Spotify playing history to see what artists you discovered before they made it big. Once it does, it generates a list of those artists, let's you know when you first listened to each artist and what percentage of their first listeners you are in.

For example let's take Hozier. Yes, Mr. Take Me To Church. He was the first artist on my list and I first listened to him (via Spotify at least) on August 1, 2014. Furthermore, I am in the first 4% of all his listeners. When it comes to A$AP Ferg, I first streamed him on August 30, 2013 and I'm in the first 8% of his listeners. SQUAAAAD!
I think FTF is a super dope idea and it's cool for the listeners to know who they helped to get the level of mainstream stardom. Another feature of FTF is you get to tweet the artist and let them know you were one of their first listeners. I mean Spotify is not only giving listeners some cool data about their listening ways but also helping the artists get to know their "early adapters" and solidify their fanbases as they blow up.

I got 14 artists that I "found first" but if I want to get my numbers up, FTF creates a customized playlist for you called Find Them Next, were they include artists on the verge of their breakthrough who you might become a fan of. And I just have to say that my Find Them Next playlist is pretty on point. 

I'm all for this and I can't wait to check in with FTF every now and then and see what other artists I was up on before the world was singing their praises. 

To see who you discovered through Spotify first, check out:
'Always More, Never Less'-Es


Quickie: Gueringer the 13th's PMI EP.

All hail Gueringer the 13th and his glorious new EP, PMI! He pays homage to his hometown of Pontiac, Michigan with rapid flows and trippy, chill production. Listening to this project feels like I was on a road trip in the Midwest when randomly the sky started changing colors, the clouds were results of kush burning, and the weather became perfect. As my car started to cruise, I was allowed to take in my surroundings in pure bliss. And in that moment, I was in PMI.

Ever since I first pressed play on this EP, it's been on repeat. I'm literally in the office hitting that Bobby Shmurda jig like no one's business. To think that this was a project to hold the people over till Gueringer drops his album, Clifford, makes me even more excited for that project to drop.

So with all of that said, you might want to do yourself a favor and get into PMI! Enjoy the ride, thank me later.
For more Gueringer the 13th, check out:

'Always More, Never Less'-Es


Always and Forever... Aaliyah.

It's been 14 years since we lost the amazing talent and beautiful soul that was Aaliyah. Her work continues to inspire artists and producers over the years and this is a quick playlist of their takes on her music. This playlist includes remixes, re-works, and covers from artists across genres.

Some people still can't understand why Aaliyah is is considered legendary and important to others today and the fact of the matter is that she was so ahead of her time. She helped open the doors for female artists to be the other kind of girl-next-door. The girl who wore baggy pants and jersey, kept her hair and makeup simple, and was an overall free spirit.

And most of all, she was indeed talented. She had a such a beautiful, smooth tone and her range was wide. She made it acceptable and even profitable to not be like every other female artist out. So hopefully that puts things into perspective for those who just don't understand why Aaliyah remains important to music today.

I will always love and miss Aaliyah. She had a big impact on me as a young girl and that impact continues as I continue to mature. May her legacy live on... always and forever.

Enjoy the playlist, share this playlist, and just dance your ass off... do it for her.

*Sidenote: Drake's label, UMG, came at people hard on Soundcloud after his recent album. They took down covers, remixes, and yes, my remix project. I am going to try to redo the project as a playlist and not one "mixtape-like" track, so y'all can enjoy it still. So bare with me.
'Always More, Never Less'-Es


Netflix & Chill: Narcos.

I know the term "Netflix & Chill" to certain people has sexual intentions behind it but for a busy, single lady like myself, it literally means that I sit my ass down, browse through Netflix, press play on the chosen movie or show, and chill.

With that being said, I did just that last night and the choice for my viewing pleasure was the new Netflix original series, Narcos.  And here is quick synopsis of what this show is about:

Netflix takes on the infamous Medellín drug cartel in "Narcos," which follows the rise and fall of Colombian kingpin Pablo Escobar and the Drug Enforcement Agency agents hunting him. The story is told largely from the points of view of Escobar, played by Brazilian actor Wagner Moura, and U.S. DEA Agent Steve Murphy (Boyd Holbrook), on opposite sides of what would become an all-out war. The gritty drama begins with the early days of the drug battle, when the biggest offenders were "hippies in flip-flops" caught with up to a kilo of marijuana, continuing to the violent, bloody battles between members of the cartel peddling tons of kilos of cocaine and drug agents from Colombia, Mexico, and the U.S. -- a struggle estimated to have cost at least 4,000 lives over two decades. Pedro Pascal ("Game of Thrones") co-stars as Mexican DEA Agent Javier Peña.
source: Google 

I'm really into crime television and film, as well as documentaries and anything non-fiction, so this series was right up my alley. I really only knew about Pablo Escobar because I would always hear his name in rap songs and then something about cocaine and money would follow the name drop. So watching this series is not only entertaining but really informative/educational.

The directors and writers do a good job of covering all bases/aspects of this story. From the effects on the Columbinan and American economy, the amount and brutiality of the violence, the complexity of Escobar and pretty much everyone involved with him, the DEA and CIA strategies in catching him, etc, etc, ETC. The acting is amazing and super believeable. The feel of the visuals-the visuals period are really dope. 

Only thing with this show, and they can't really help it, is that you're reading subtitles a lot. I mean the situation happened in Latin America and the majority of the people involved speak Spanish. And I actually salute Netflix for keeping as much of the Spanish speaking as they did because it adds to the authenticity of the series. But the constant reading is just something I really had to get use to. 

Overall, this series is amazing! Yes, I watched the entire season in one day because that is what you do it with shows on Netflix! Excited to see the next season and yes, I'm definitely adding this to "My List"
'Always More, Never Less'-Es

Quickie: BASECAMP's Greater Than EP

I love me some BASECAMP and when their latest EP, Greater Than popped up on my Soundcloud home stream, I pressed play instantly. The Nashville group continues to warm our hearts and make our heads bob with their smooth, layered production and Aaron's vocals... can we discuss his voice real quick.

Aaron Miller's voice is like NSFW. His voice on this EP is like silk sheetson the bed in a candle light room, with the windows open on a warm summer night. Yes, it's that damn sexy. And on this EP, he really showcased the beauty of his voice.

Honestly, I like this EP more than their self titled EP because they really explored the boundaries of their unique sound. And this is some of the best music I've heard as of recent. Kinda sidenote, the re-work of Greater Than-Aaron, you're not slick and I'm still a Boss of Nova fan. So if y'all are going to re-work gems from those days, I need a re-work of Cold Tea-just saying!

BASECAMP is everything! And so is this EP, so press play and indulge!
For more BASECAMP, check out:
'Always More, Never Less'-Es


The Cycle.

Whether you are watching the news or keeping up with social media, a subject that is always on our minds whether we speak on it or not is police brutality and more specifically, police brutality against black people. It seems like everyday there is a new case of this matter and it unfortunately results in the death of an innocent person.

In an effort to not only start this conversation amongst people but to also conduct it in a productive manner, director Michael Marantz and Already Alive give us the short film, The Cycle. The Cycle is described as "a free tool to inspire important dialogue about the cycle of violence and fear that affects our communities." The film follows a NYC cop (played by Ade Otukoya) as he commits a fatal mistake and deals with the aftermath.

This film is literally only about 11 minutes long yet so much is told throughout. The story is so well written and the film is extremely well directed. I think that this film needs to be seen by everyone and I think the conversation to follow will educate people and allow people to open up and share their feelings. I also think it's awesome to use art in any shape or form to provoke a neccessary conversation that is affecting so many of us. 

Since this film is presented as a tool, there is also a free conversation guide you can use to engage in conversation with those who watched it with you.

I know that we can get tired of talking about these issues and it seems draining but if we don't talk about what is happening, nothing will change. We have to continue to have these conversations where we educate and share with each other. Due to the state of where we live right now... not having these conversations is like life or death. We have to be the change we want to see.

To watch The Cycle and for more information, visit:
'Always More, Never Less'-Es

The Light Phone.

Few months ago, I traveled to my home away from home, Nigeria, and unexpectedly was off the grid from most technology and the internet. Now Nigeria is not some desolate country, in fact, Nigeria is booming in all areas including technology. But due to the circumstances I was in, I didn't feel any of that "boom".

For the first few days, I was really pissed I couldn't access my email or check out my Twitter and Instagram timelines. But as time went on, I was glad I was off the grid of the World Wide Web because I was actually enable to enjoy... well at least experience what was happening around me. And I was able to enjoy the people around me too.

For those of us who would like to escape all the "extraness" of our mobile devices today, there is the Light phone. The Light phone brings you back into the time where phones were made to simply call others-nothing else. This light weight, simplified device connects with your current cell phone and while eliminating the notification buzz from email, social media, and apps. So while you may be missing notifications from retweets from Twitter or likes from Instagram, you won't miss a call from Mom or anyone else.

They say it's "your phone away from your phone". I like to think of it as a vacation phone. Often fellow family members may complain that you're "not being in the moment" and let's be honest, they're right. Even for someone like myself who literally makes a living off of social media and the internet, there are days when I don't want to be bothered by the constant "tapping of the shoulder" feel of those things.

The Light Phone is up for pre-order right now on the company's website. It's $100 for the device, the charger, SIM, and 500 pre-paid minutes. To me, that is actually somewhat affordable and I could definitely see myself copping one of these.

So you don't need to go out of the country to go off the grid. You can cop a Light Phone and go off the grid in the comfort of your home or your world.

For more on the Light Phone, check out:
Moo's Interview with Light Phone's co-founder, Joe Hollier
'Always More, Never Less'-Es


No Sleeep.

Mom's homeee!!!Yasssss! Janet Jackson is back with some smoothness to get us right for this weekend with her new single, No Sleeep! It features J.Cole, who kills it! Janet definitely went back to her 90's vibe for this song and I am loving it!

I'm so excited that I can barely type! Janet Jackson is like everything to me and I will fight you if you try her-I dare you Meek Mill, I dare you! Lol But I'm so happy about this comeback of hers and it seems to be going really well and we are all excited for her. Love this song and I want the album now but I'll wait till Mom is ready to give it to us! Press play now, you know you want to!

Janet will be on tour for the rest of the year and the first quarter next year, so check out her website for all the dates!!!

For more Janet Jackson, check out:
'Always More, Never Less'-Es


White Lightning.

When did this happen? Apparently, Aubrey and Shannon of former girl group, Danity Kane are now a duo called dumblonde. Here is the video for their first single, White Lightning, which is actually pretty dope.

I was a huge Danity Kane fan and was always upset about the disbanding of the group. But Dawn went off to have some solo success and for a minute, four of the girls got back together but obviously, that didn't last.

Finding out about dumblonde, I'm actually excited about them! Aubrey and Shannon were never really standouts in their early girl group days but they have found their lane and are riding quite well in it. Their vocals are very fitting for the electro pop vibe of the production they have been working with. I'm obviously not expecting powerhouse vocals from them but I like what they're doing.

The video is really cool. Simple yet intriguing. dumblonde... I'm liking this. Press play and enjoy. ...I'm gonna have go listen to Welcome to the Dollhouse now. =/

dumblonde's self-titled, debut album is available for pre-order on iTunes now!

For more dumblonde, check out:
'Always More, Never Less'-Es