Category Archives: New Music

Esperanza’s Story [Show review]

Submitted by Brandon Jackson.

Sometimes a story is only as good as the storyteller, and last Saturday Esperanza Spalding told a story of love, hope, and life during her second visit to the city of Indianapolis. Spalding performed at the Old National Theatre with her 10-piece Radio Music Society Band.  Spalding introduced each member of the band throughout the 2 hour long show as they each brought their own unique flavor to songs like “Black Gold” which backup singer Chris Turner sang out during the interlude. This song also consisted of a dialogue with Spalding as he sang “Was Travon Martin’s life so dispensable?”

Spalding allowed her feelings to take center stage as she played her bass and spoke to the audience while introducing songs like “Smile” in which she stated that, “If you’re not his queen, then he’s not your king,” making reference to how couples should treat each other in their relationships. Spalding also took out time to talk about the Innocence Project which was founded in 1992 to help prisoners prove their innocence through DNA testing. To date over 300 people in the United States have been exonerated by DNA testing because of the vigilance of lawyers who volunteer their service to the Innocence Project. Spalding signed posters, CDs, and t-shirts after her performance from which she donated all proceeds to the organization located in New York.

Spalding is not only a musician who uses her music to bring change, but she is also a musician who doesn’t mind getting to know you if only for a few moments, as she proved during her signing after the concert. To be in the presence of Esperanza Spalding and the Radio Music Society made you feel right as she spoke to the audience as if they were friends that she knew for years. One funny moment during the show was when someone’s phone rang as she started to introduce the next song, and she reached out her hand and stated “Is that for me?” During her rendition of Michael Jackson’s “I Can’t Help It,” she wasted no time upping the energy level as she played her bass with ease and captivated the audience as she danced as if she was the only one in the room. Something else that stood out during her set was the life size boom box that sat on stage as Spalding actually used the prop throughout the show and made reference to as she introduced her last piece entitled “Radio Song.” Spalding had the audience laughing as she talked about how a bad day could go by being stuck in traffic on your way to an interview, but somehow that day would turn out good because you found your favorite song on the radio. Aside from the feeling that Spalding seemed like your best friend or your fun-loving sister, you still could not ignore the fact that she is a musical genius and a true musical icon in the making.

Read more of Brandon’s writing on Esperanza, HERE. Get a FREE TEE for you and a Friend by guessing this Esperanza Spalding SONG.


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A Deep Introspection Into My Last Show [Video] + Blue Moon Sunday

Any artist that is faced with a crowd like this must first acknowledge that they will not, and can not measure up to the need of the crowd. They must call for backup. They must call on the giver of the gift. So that’s just what I did. Continue reading

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Black Radio- Yasiin Bey Lyric Video

Pure hot jazz-hiphop-fusion-experimentation-mix…


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Yasiin Bey’s New Muhammed Ali Ad + Louis Vuitton

Round 1: DREAM

Stuart A. McIntyre is represented exclusively by Steam Films.

See more of his work here:

Production House: Steam Films Executive Producers: Krista Marshall Director: Stuart A. McIntyre Producer: Paul Matthews Cinematographer: Kris Belchevski Camera Operators: Stuart Cameron, Claudio Manni, Luis Moreira Editing: Posterboy Edit Executive Producer: Michelle Lee Editor: Stephan Sora Colour: Alter Ego Executive Producer: Greg Edgar Colourist: Wade Odlum Online: Motor VFX Flame Artist: Daniel Kelly Music House: Apollo Studios Executive Producers: Benedicte Luneau, Koo Abuali, Phillipe-Auburt Messier, Yan Dal Santo Music: Mathieu Brault, Daenen Bramberger, Mike Wise Sound Design: Yan Dal Santo

Full Campaign Here:

Round 2: WORD

Full Campaign Here:

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Africa is Worldwide!!!

I bet you never thought Mexico and Australia were two strong promoters of the Motherland. Continue reading

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UK iLLIGAN ALERT: Emeli Sande’

Emeli Sande: She’s already an international superstar! Why haven’t you ever heard of her? Continue reading

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Shad Attack…Dope Rap is B[l]ack

Shad is not a newbie to the game. Cats from Vancouver to Nairobi know his name. The hardest thing to figure out is… Why is he new to you?

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If you’ve never heard of Meleni Smith…Let us introduce!
Meleni Smith
Watch out there now…

If you are looking for more…Search here, you soul carnivore!

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Forget a 16…She’s got a mean 64! Lady Leshurr is killin ’em!

As the US continues to go head over hills for the Queen of Young Money, something fierce is brewing in the UK. Continue reading

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Nneka Returns!!!

Nneka God First

This is what I stand for…

If you haven’t heard of Nneka by now, maybe you are being intentional in making sure you don’t know what’s hot! She has traveled the globe pushing a message that cry’s for transparency, humility, and love. Check out her newest video, Stay.

In “My Soul is Heavy” Nekka takes us on a journey into the despair that her heart feels for her Nigerian people caught in the middle of the Niger Delta oil crisis.

With an entire continent’s concerns on her back, Nneka delves into the depths of Africa’s darkest realities to arise with faith, love, and hope on each of her 3 studio releases. The video “My Home” explores how her faith in God is the sustaining force that allows both her as well as millions of Africans to face the harsh circumstances the they face together.

Just in case you’ve have been sleeping under a rock; check out this link:

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iLLIGAN EXXXCLUSIVE: Melissa Briggs [Lock It Down]

Have you ever heard a voice that immediately made you smile. You must have heard Melissa ‘Missy’ Briggs. Although she remains unknown to many, she has a top tier voice and a reason to sing.

My first encounter with Briggs was at Blue Moon Sunday in the early 2000’s. She was singing back-up for Tasha Jones. Since then, I have worked with her and learned why she is quickly catching the attention of music lovers.

In the song Lock It Down, she is stepping out of the shadows to show why she needs a top spot on Indy’s ‘Best Kept Secret List’.

Listen and enjoy!


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Indie Scene on pins and needles awaiting ‘Stranger Pt. 2 Love Me’…Whitney Coleman- produced by Jace

Whitney Coleman Stranger [world premier]

See the preview here!

The online world premier of ‘STRANGER Pt. 2 Love Me’ will be our iLL EXXXCLUSIVE on October 24, 2011 at 10am.

See it! Discuss it! Share it!

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Common’s In the Sky!!

Dope music by Common…
Check-it, yo!

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Yoruba Soul Mixxx: 20 Feet Tall
Here is Osunlade’s Yoruba Soul remix of Erykah Badu’s 20 Feet Tall. Enjoy… by user6663169

Shouts out to Cultural Cannibals for sharing!

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Discover a Dope Artist: Tinashe

Tinashe: You Will Be Saved! Continue reading

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umm. excuse me!

Beautiful Hair Everywhere! Continue reading

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Aloe Blacc- Mama Hold My Hand Aloe Blacc Good Things

Teach your babies to fly and they will carry your hopes and dreams across seas, mountains, and borders! Love them… teach them and warn them! If you are so fortunate, they will sing a song like this to you one day!


Shouts out to Black Box Creative for sharing this! Cop Aloe Blacc’s album HERE!

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Chicago’s Khari Lemuel To Feature at Blue Moon Sunday June 26, 2011

If you know anything about today’s soul music scene, you must know about Khari Lemuel!! He is the embodiment of soul meets spoken word. Khari is a singer, composer, writer, and classically trained cellist. Trained in 8 different instruments, he has been playing cello professionally since the age of 3. Both Oprah and Good Morning America’s Charles Gibson sing his Praises.

This Sunday you can experience Khari LIVE at Indianapolis’ Premier Poetry/Jazz Set, Blue Moon Sunday.

Hailing from the Windy City, Khari, brings a style and flavor that can only be rivaled by the greats. Even though he is well under 40, his style and flavor remind you of something mama ‘anem used to listen to. So this Sunday is the Sunday to grab your date and prepare to do some serious chillin.

If you are an artist, you can also share at Blue Moon Sunday. The open mic is always one of the high points of the night. With performances spanning the genres of poetry, jazz, hip hop, comedy and gospel; Blue Moon’s stage is one of the most welcoming stages you’ll find anywhere.

Our host is the ever stylish Tasha Jones and the house band is Diverse Fragments Featuring Michael Houston.

Seeya Sunday at 7pm at the Madame Walker Theatre!

Blue Moon Sunday

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The MIXTAPE Game is Crowded (DO SOMETHING NEW!!)

Artists need to read the following excerpt from a recent edition of “The Urban Buzz Factor”.

By Jesse Atkinson, CEO of Urban Threshold Inc. and Founder of The A&R Power Summit and The Underground Music Awards

Presently the Mixtape market is very over saturated. There are too many mixtape projects being released freely into the marketplace without any defined purpose or mission. The end result is nothing but clutter!

There are several important factors you must consider before releasing a mixtape.
Firstly, make sure the mixtape is recorded properly, mixed down correctly and sounds crisp.

Equally important, make sure your mixtape content, cover and concept are unique to stand apart from the competition. Strive to make a “Classic” mixtape not a “Clutter” mixtape. Don’t just make “clutter” music that you give away for free to clutter the marketplace. Make “Classic” music with passion and feeling that music afficianados can appreciate.

If you’re going to do a remix of a popular song or rhyme over a well know industry instrumental, then make sure that your version is just as good or even better than the original.

Don’t Get Caught up in the “Mixtape Madness.” Don’t release your 3rd free mixtape in 3 months if you haven’t properly promoted the first two.

Most indie Hip Hop artists release a mixtape without even promoting it. Some rappers spend thousands of dollars to get a “big name” DJ to host their mixtape and then spend zero dollars marketing it.

Develop a strategy to make people excited about downloading it. Create Hype about your mixtape before releasing it. Send out press releases, do giveaways, get reviews on it, do radio interviews, etc.

Before dropping a mixtape, release a single and develop it virally. Inform the public that this is the 1st single from the upcoming mixtape. A week or two before releasing your mixtape, do a couple of mixtape release parties and invite the press, fans and DJ’s. Perform a couple of songs from it.

To promote the mixtape, use a small budget to sponsor local events. Advertise with your local internet radio shows that support your music.

And don’t just spend money on a Mixtape Marketing company. Work the project yourself as well. Make your fans part of the experience!

Put a snippet of a bonus single on your free mixtape and then sell that bonus single in its entirety on Itunes. Additionally, make a music video of the bonus single, put it on Youtube and advertise that it’s a bonus single from your mixtape.

Also try to Do something different with your mixtape like tie it in to your favorite charity whereby you can get awareness for the charity as well.

If you’re going to pay a so called big name DJ to host your mixtape, then try to have an agreement which stipulates that the DJ has to promote the project as well.

Now that your free mixtape has been downloaded “5000” or more times, what’s next? That’s what you should be asking yourself. (Movement Calculations)

The purpose of giving away free music is to advertise your brand for opportunities that make money like paid live shows, endorsements, merchandise sales etc.

If you don’t have a follow up plan to generate money from your “Free Mixtape”, then you’re just wasting your time. Monetize your Movement!

The little bit of advice I just gave on “Mixtapes” is priceless! I hope it helps so that we can get rid of some of this clutter of free Mixtapes that are put into the marketplace without any Rhyme or Reason.. Jesse Atkinson

To learn more about how people are beginning to think about alternatives to mixtapes; check out De Gud Life. They are an Indianapolis multimedia collective that believe in delivering more than just music. They mix 2 dimensional art, video, and music together to deliver a package that they call a BLENDER.

De Gud Life- The IDEAL Blender

Even though I agree with the lyrical content of the music about as much as I dig Lil Boosie or even 50 Cent; I gotta say, “I really think these guys are on to something!” They flawlessly deliver a serious in the nail of the casket of Mixtapes!

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Not So Local- Local SuperStars! Whitney Coleman and
Whitney Coleman

Every once in a while
Somebody comes with a style
That will make a grin
Turn into a full smile

It’s not Everyday
That you feel this way
Dope is Dope
& iLL is iLL
@ that is OK

But what about when
Dopeness finds a friend?
What do you do
when when your friend’s dope too-
Life takes a dope spin!

Whitney Coleman is an unashamed Christian who’s style and flavor is enough to appeal to the masses. She has a take-charge stage presence that leaves crowds begging for an encore. This is not to take away from her soothing class. On her newest single, Whitney teams up with fellow Dope rhymer to deliver a great track for the summer. Even though they both reside in a town that’s better known for race cars and brawling basketball teams, than soul and lyracism; together, they put a familiar face on the circle city.

This face is the face of Dopeness!

Enjoy this new song [Feelings ft.] off of Whitney Coleman’s new Album, The Love Chapter: Lessons From A Human Heart

… Must Be Love!

Cop the album HERE!

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