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The NY Experience- A New York City Street Photography Journal

Late Night Midtown Walk
Photo by Mark Giarrusso, NYC, 2013

To capture the people of New York City in photos is to indeed document the very soul of the most complex yet beautiful places in the world. The 2011 Census estimates there are 8,244,910 people and 800 languages spoken in New York City.  Ask each individual what New York City means to them and you will probably receive 8,244,910 different answers in whatever of the 800 languages they are speaking. There is no more unique place on Earth and that uniqueness comes from the people here.

It’s easy enough to see that the city is not only made up of people, but the experience of life here is made up of their moments.

A Moment Of Prayer
A Moment of Prayer, Photo by Mark Giarrusso, NYC, 2013
Night Shift At The Grace Building
Photo by Mark Giarrusso, Grace Building, NYC, 2013
Late Night Reader (Black And White)
Photo by Mark Giarrusso, NYC, 2013
Late Night Midtown Walk
Photo by Mark Giarrusso, NYC, 2013
3rd Watch at St. Patrick's Cathedral
Photo by Mark Giarrusso, St, Patrick’s Cathedral, NYC, 2013
 Brooklyn Bridge Park, FDNY
Photo by Mark Giarrusso, Brooklyn, NYC, USA, 2013
A Walk Down The MOMA Stairs
Photo by Mark Giarrusso, MOMA, NYC, 2013
A Quiet Smoke In The Park
Photo by Mark Giarrusso, Central Park, NYC, 2013
This Machine... (Black and White Street Musician)
Photo by Mark Giarrusso, NYC, 2013

Hiding out from Winter Storm Nemo with a Chinese play on Seafood Ravioli

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The Final Product.
The Final Product.

I felt like I was in the middle of a chopped episode when I opened up my fridge while hiding out from winter storm Nemo. I had been traveling so the cupboards are a little bare, and I just did not want to go back outside.

I gathered up this episodes mystery ingredients; crab and lobster ravioli, a Vidalia onion, baby spinach, baby portabella mushroom, ginger, garlic, sesame oil, curly parley and hot pepper.

Ingredients
Mystery Box Ingredients

I then wondered why I did not have any olive oil in the apartment, but then looked and the dish as a way to change ravioli into dumplings. I heated the oil with the hot pepper and let the flavor soak in. I then fried the onions, but to be honest, they needed a little more time on the high heat, and would have be much better suited with a sharper onion, instead of one with such a high sugar content. I grated the ginger on the onions as they cooked. From here I broke down the mushrooms with salt and tossed them in with the onions and the spinach and parsley followed shortly after. All this was tossed with the Nuovo’s Crab & Lobster Ravioli after a quick four-minute boil.

All and all considering the fact that I was cooking from what felt like a mystery basket of ingredients I’d say that I would have gotten a solid B on the test. But, I should have cooked down the onions further and chopped them smaller, infused more chili spice into the oil and included more spinach for better balance. The dish should have used a sharper onion.

The Final Product.
The Final Product.

But I will say I successfully transformed a very traditional Italian meal base to a Chinese fusion type of dish. The sesame oil, chili, garlic and ginger melded well with the seafood moose that stuffed the red and yellow pasta. The dish was nutritious containing those dark vegetables high in nutrition. The dish was not fat free by any stretch of the imagination, but the sesame oil does have additional health benefits when compared to other oils. One surprise about the oil is the high levels of calcium and magnesium. It also is know to lower blood pressure. This combined with the anti-inflammatory properties of ginger makes for a meal that is filling, delicious with health benefits.

This in my mind is a fun way to spend the afternoon while avoiding going out in the snow.

Album Review: My Bloody Valentine – M B V

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My Bloody Valentine:          M B V

Score:          10/10

 

Similar Artists:          Slowdive, Ride, Cocteau Twins

Genre:           Shoegaze, Dream Pop

 

Ah, I remember when the last My Bloody Valentine album came out; those were the good ol’ days. I might have only been an infant of 1 year and a few months at the time, but the roaring guitars completely stood out from the other albums my mom used as lullaby music. Ever since then, I, along with countless other fans have been eagerly awaiting the band’s follow up. Decade after decade passed and little to no news arose; although we still waited, most of us knew the sad truth that there simply wasn’t going to be any more material from the band. Well, it turns out that truth doesn’t really exist, as the new MBV album has just been released. As exciting as it is to know that dreams do come true, even after listening on heavy repeat for the last few days, it feels awfully strange to be writing this review. Despite the recent appearance of every other  band from the 90’s reuniting to either put out a new record or roll around the country in a cash grabbing tour, this event seems bewildering, and similar to the music in question, dream like. The best comparison to this event would be the 44 year wait for The Beach Boy’s Smile sessions release, but even that was never actually completed. Now it would seem the only thing I have left to wish for is a new Neutral Milk Hotel record.

So the big question everyone seems to want to know the answer to is, “How does M B V compare to its highly lauded predecessor?” Let me talk about that. That album was known for its unexplainable production, restrictive use of non-guitar instruments, breathy vocals (often inaudible) and an ocean’s length of challenging tremoloed guitar waves. Well, this album has all of those things, and as it turns out, it has a whole lot more as well; so the question in hand should actually be “has Loveless been surpassed?”

This new album title, “M B V”, splits the band’s name into 3 letters with a space in between each. This seems to be in relation to the three distinct sections of the album, (of 3 songs each). The end of each section even has a few seconds of rest to symbolize the changing direction. Because of this, the album can even be taken as a grouping of EP’s the band has deemed up to its standards. Those standards in question are exceedingly high ones, but this release is proof that these individuals are the same group of perfectionists they were in the early 90’s.

The first of these sections is best described as a continuation of the Loveless style. The sounds, textures and songwriting are arguably more accomplished than they were before. We enter with “She Found Now”, a particularly majestic song that keeps things slow moving, yet tense due to the jagged, storm-brewing undercurrents. “Only Tomorrow”, brings on the band’s sorely missed crackling guitar fuzz. Major chords are introduced ¾ through to remind us of how the band excels at combining the accessible with the non-accessible.

The second section opens with “Is This and Yes”, which is an electronic ambient piece led by bright organ drones, the light thumping of a drum, and Bilinda Butcher’s tenderly sung vocals (which are featured prominently through these 3 tracks). It is a curious track that brings to mind select pieces from Angelo Badalamenti’s “Twin Peaks” soundtrack. “If I Am” and “New You” are the most accessible moments on the record, the latter of which throw us into a guitar bass shuffle and ends with beautiful vocal harmonizing from Bilinda.

The last section is the loudest, fastest and least comparable to anything else in the group’s discography (or anyone’s discography for that matter). “In Another Way” is an achievement in its use of superbly warped guitar licks, and a keyboard that sees the band at their most ethereal. “Nothing is” is three and a half minutes of punishingly repeating guitar and drums, but it proves so hypnotic that the word “repetitive” never comes to mind. Final song “Wonder 2” is another out there track that I won’t embarrass myself by trying to put into words….

Of course… none of my words have any relation to what this music sounds like. The band’s indescribability is how they have managed to never falter in turning up repeatedly in day to day conversation. The time off has proved this laughably unprolific band to be a true one-of-a-kind act. MBV’s followers have had 21 years to make an album that sounds like Loveless and nothing has come close. So here we are, listening to this unexpected new release, and all I can think is “I don’t need Loveless anymore.”

 

Track Listing:

1.) She Found Now*

2.) Only Tomorrow*

3.) Who Sees You

4.) Is This and Yes

5.) If I am

6.) New You*

7.) In Another Way*

8.) Nothing is

9.) Wonder 2*

* – Album Highlight

HELP! UNEMPLOYMENT! I am Unemployed. What do I do now?

THIS IS UNEMPLOYMENT!
http://www.bwmag.in/wp-content/uploads/2011/10/This-is-Sparta.jpg

HELP! UNEMPLOYMENT! I am Unemployed. What do I do now? Take a deep breath. Inhale. Exhale. While being unemployed or facing unemployment is a very scary and daunting moment in one’s life, it is not the end of the world. On many levels, Job hunting is much like dating. You win some, you lose some but when it comes down to it, you learn more about your true wants and needs in the end.

Just like dating and meeting people for the first time, unemployment or the single life, can open many doors and venues that you may not have thought of whilst in your last position (relationship).

Jobs come in many different shapes, sizes and skill sets. They also have different salaries, schedule structures, corporate structures and employee perks.

You gotta know what you want in a job before you can make it happen. Culture Beat: Mr. Vain “I know what I want and I want it now”

1) Education. Despite the high costs of this sector furthering your education is never a bad thing as long as you are researching and understanding the short and long-term benefits and negatives to education. Yes, you are unemployed and money is tight but this could be a GOOD boost to your experience.

2) Career transition. Maybe you have reached that moment with your job where you have had enough? It’s okay, this happens sometimes and you are not at fault but in this time of a slowed lifestyle, try to focus on what you want to do next and how you can attain that goal.

3) Network. But don’t beg.

DON’T. Sit and complain about your job situation. Keep in mind that just because you are unemployed does not mean EVERYONE is unemployed. The last thing you want to become is that guy/girl who never stops complaining and gives the ‘I’m poor and unemployed’ sob story. We get it. Get over it. It’s life and make something happen out of it. Complaining will not get you a job.

DO. Ask friends how they are doing and politely see if they know of any openings in their company. Some may ask for your resume and forward it along, others may not feel so inclined. Try and stay as happy and positive as you can. I repeat no one needs another Debbie Downer in their life.

Don’t Be a Debbie Downer with Unemployment!

 

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Don’t Be a Debbie Downer with Unemployment! http://cdn.business2community.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/10/debbie_downer.jpg

4) Too much unemployment is NOT a good thing. Despite what many people have yet to realize about job hunting is that the moment you become unemployed, your career clock is ticking. This clock determines the probability as to how quickly you will be hired again. The longer you allow this clock to tick, the more challenging the search will become ESPECIALLY if you wait a year or longer before you hop into the job market again.

Yes, I know that there are SOME people out there who get lucky and have the ability to pull some strings but most of us do not have such luck and when an employer sees a huge unemployment period they question a person’s motivation/drive and work ethic.  

Keep this in mind before your two-year hibernation.

5) Learn a New Hobby! Get yourself out there and try something new. Anything. Ballet, magic, architecture, travelling, bear wrestling. Yes, it is important to spend a large chunk of your time finding work and honing in on job opportunities but this gives you ample time to find yourself again and discover new things about yourself. Keep it light, keep it simple. As humans, once we stop learning, we stop living. As a Ghandi writes, ““Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.”

Seize the day! THIS.IS.UNEMPLOYMENT!

THIS IS JOB HUNTING!
THIS. IS. UNEMPLOYMENT!!! http://www.bwmag.in/wp-content/uploads/2011/10/This-is-Sparta.jpg

 

Most of all what I would like to reiterate in this post is to be consistent. Job hunting IS a full-time job and it requires consistency to really put a dent in finding what you want.

Regardless of your career level, the state of being unemployed is a tough position to be in but with the right attitude and motivation it can propel you forward in your career.

Have you ever been unemployed? How did you go about obtaining your next job? What did you succeed with in your job search? What were your struggles?  Feel free to share! There are MANY of us out there who are dying to know because, well, quite frankly we are very high in unemployment numbers right now.

 

 

Scruff is in. Thank freaking god.

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Credit to: ScruffScruffandbeards.tumblr.com
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Credit to: Pinterest.com

 

Good news to all the men out there that decide not to shave more (or all) than your sisters and girlfriends- Scruff is in, and its here to stay.

A recent study founded that gay men preferred when their other half didn’t shave and kept things natural.  I usually don’t pay attention to studies like this as they are stupid because most of the time they only poll 10 people, but in this case I completely agree.

And this goes for both gay and straight men- seriously what are you doing shaving your whole body.  Unless you are Michael Phelps or that other douchebag Ryan Lochte where you have to shave in order to gain an inch or two on that competitor from some country I have never heard of in swimming, keep it real.

In my opinion, unless you are naturally not hairy or have a hard time growing body hair, I prefer someone I date to be naturally themselves.  I can understand a little manscaping once in a while, but when you look like the amount of body hair you shaved could turn into my new pet that I have to raise myself, please don’t bother messaging or approaching me.

Smart phone apps like Scruff and Growlr have in a way made this revolution even better, because when a man has Scruff it can also identify itself with masculinity.  Masculinity is something that many gay men want (myself included) and when you have that type of Scruffy look, it elevates that attraction to a whole other level.  Many a gay icons right now, from Bradley Cooper to Jake Gyllenhaal, do this well and understand their dual audience in gay men and women, hence why they are at at the forefront of everyone’s minds and pant inseam.

I say this goes for straight men as well.  I have a zillion girlfriends and they pretty much echo the same sentiment.  Many of them like the basic jeans and t-shirt guys, not the ones that spend two hours in the bathroom getting ready for a night out.  Put the freaking hair gel away, throw on a basic outfit, and go out.

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Credit to: Jeremy Lucido

Keep it natural folks. And enjoy the picture or two I have inserted in here. Yay.

Many Happy Returns: Community

The Cast of Community (Source: Rolling Stone)
The Cast of Community (Source: Rolling Stone)

 

The Cast of Community (Source: Rolling Stone)
The Cast of Community (Source: Rolling Stone)

Community: Thursdays at 8pm Eastern on NBC   

Since we last saw Community: A ton has happened in the last 9 months since any new Community last showed new episodes. Community was narrowly re-upped for a fourth season. The show’s creator was unceremoniously canned due to budget issues with Sony, Chevy Chase got really mad for a bunch of reasons, the show was moved to Friday (to be paired with Whitney…ewwww) only for that move to be rescinded when the Peacock had a disastrous developmental season left too few shows to be called up from the bench. As a result, the show was pushed back to spring, which is perfectly acceptable to me as it means that we will be replacing one of my least favorite holidays (Valentine’s Day) with one of my most favorite holidays (Halloween). Finally, Barack Obama was reelected president and the Manhattan Digest was created.

Oh wait, that section was supposed to be a recap of what happened on the show to catch people up? Ok. So when we last left off, the Greendale Seven had just saved the school from Chang, who had taken over the school in pure Napoleonic fashion after installing an imposter dean and kidnapping the real dean. A few months later, Jeff was forced to choose between his career and his newly found friendship when Shirley and Pierce struggle to determine who would run their new sandwich shop. Troy saved the air conditioning school and moved into the room that was formerly the Dreamatorium. Finally Britta was giving Abed therapy, which almost led to Evil Abed trying to recreate the darkest time line by being generally evil.

Our season premiere looks to revolve around two key points. First and foremost, the Dean has a limited number of tickets to a course titled “The History of Ice Cream”, which in true Greendale fashion leads to a Hunger Games style campus-wide fight for those precious few tickets. Additionally, we learn that last year’s beloved dictator Chang has acquired a case of amnesia, meaning that he has completely forgotten about his psychotic reign of terror last year (though hopefully he hasn’t forgotten how to play the Key-tar).

What I’m looking forward to: One of the things that last season finale did well was leave a number of plot threads open for season four while leaving an ending that would not be a complete let down in the case of cancellation. We should finally meet Jeff’s dad this season, which I’m awaiting with baited breath as Jeff’s daddy issues played a large role in season 3. Finally, even without a fifth season renewal, season four seems like a natural closing point to the story about college, so the absolute worst case scenario is the story reaches what would be it’s natural conclusion.

What I’m not looking forward to: No new episodes after may? A possible change in tone in an attempt to “broaden” the show under Sony’s behest? Whatever line it was that made Chevy Chase blow up midseason? This topic is pretty difficult for me as Community is easily one of my favorite shows on the dial and I am way too happy to see it return (hence the column title: Many Happy Returns). However, knowing the creative tour de force that is Dan Harmon (and if you haven’t checked out his podcast Harmontown I strongly recommend it) is gone, the show could lose some of the intricacy that was it’s hallmark over the last two seasons.

Janeration’s Fashion Show: Knits, Colors, and The Cashmere Touch Collection

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Bravo Jane and Anna.  Bravo.  Timeless, stunning touches of detail, and superb craftsmanship is what Janeration’s Ready-To-Wear hand knitted collection is bringing to the table for 2013. The Cashmere Touch collection is about color, embellishments, leather, textures, crocheting,  and above all beautifully executed pieces.

Netflix’d: Days of Heaven

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Well hello there, all those that be faithful towards internet news feed. Welcome to the first edition of my new column for Manhattan Digest that I will be calling Netflix’d. Those that have been following my reviews will notice that I’ve mainly been focusing on recent theatrical releases. Thing is, we currently live in a day and age where so many people are getting their entertainment fix from the internet thanks to legitimate sites like Netflix and Hulu. Seeing that people are always asking me for Netflix recommendations (and that I certainly watch Netflix enough to get more than just my money’s worth), I decided I might as well write about some of the more hidden gems that the site carries. For my first entry, I’ll be tackling Terrence Malick’s Days of Heaven, which is one of my favorite films, and a must see for any self-respecting fan of American cinema

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Title:  Days of Heaven

Director: Terrence Malick

Writer: Terrence Malick

Year: 1978

Running Time: 94 minutes

Starring: Richard Gere, Brooke Adams, Sam Shepard, Linda Manz

Genre: Drama, Period Piece, Surrrealism

Similar To: There Will Be Blood, Citizen Kane, great movies in general

What is the quintessential American movie? It’s a question that has plagued scholars for decades, with vital considerations coming up time and time again. Many would go with Citizen Kane, as it’s not just a powerful spectacle about the power our nation carries, but it’s one of the most important films ever made in terms of cinematic technique. Or, many could also suggest The Godfather as it’s a film so epic and ageless, that it’s subtext about capitalism is so relevant even today. You could even look at recent cinema like Paul Thomas Anderson’s There Will Be Blood and say that current film makers have a better understanding of America’s roots than ever before. I, however, feel that Terrence Malick’s 1978 masterpiece, Days of Heaven, is more transcendent and visually striking than any of those aforementioned films.

Set in 1916, the film takes place primarily in the panhandle area of Texas. It follows a trio of drifters, Bill (Gere), his girlfriend Abby (Adams), and his little sister Linda (Manz), who are on the run after Bill accidentally kills his steel mill boss. The protagonists join a large caravan, with Bill and Abby deciding to tell people they are siblings rather than lovers. Eventually they come across a large farm, where they take up jobs from the owner (Shepard) who is only referred to as “the farmer” throughout the film’s running time. We soon discover that the farmer is both dying from illness, as well as infatuated with Abby. Bill and Abby then hatch a plan to have her pose as the farmer’s lover, only so that she may inherit his fortune after he dies.

Of all the great new Hollywood directors, Terrence Malick was the most enigmatic. Keeping much of his personal life private, and rarely responding to interviews, the director almost immediately became seen as a recluse. Also, Malick’s films didn’t adhere to popular American genre conventions (i.e. film noir, westerns) as much as his contemporaries, didn’t have snappy dialogue to them, and featured characters that tended to be social outcasts.  These might be the reasons his films aren’t as ingrained into the public conscious as much as films like Taxi Driver and Dog Day Afternoon are, but there’s no doubt that his work is just as influential.  Days of Heaven was most certainly an ambitious project, especially considering that this was only Malick’s second feature, after having shot his debut feature, Bad Lands just a few years earlier. The film could of easily been a mess (like Michael Cimino’s disastrous Heaven’s Gate), but fortunately the script, cinematography, directing and editing all came together in a truly sublime fashion to form a film that remains an unqualified masterpiece.

days of heaven train

Right from the film’s start, it’s clear that this is a film about America’s progression during the early part of the 20th century, even if  the tone is so different than what we are used to. The film’s opening credits sequence showcases black-and-white photographs of workers, children and architecture from the era, with a rendition of The Aquarium by Saint Sans playing. It’s a haunting start for sure, and the film doesn’t become any less chilly. Regardless of the tension, the film is a perpetual beauty with Malick and his cinematographer Nestor Almendos illuminating the screen with lasting imagery. Malick said the film’s look took influence from the artwork of early 20th century painters like Edward Hopper, and it definitely shows. The film’s look is restrained yet expansive, asking us to view America during a shifting and perplexing period of time.

Still, as evoking the imagery is, it would fall on deaf ears if the story didn’t match. It certainly does though, despite it’s lack of dialogue. The film had a very arduous editing process, with Malick spending three years of his life to make sense of the massive amount of footage that he had shot. Eventually it was decided that much of the film’s shot dialogue scenes would be cut, and instead replaced with narration monologues from Linda Manz’ character. The effect is subtly eerie, as there’s just something so strong in hearing this story told from the point of view of a teenage girl, speaking in a very distinct Chicagoan accent. The film’s last spoken monologue from her is one of the most powerful closing lines I can think of.

Despite it’s surrealism and breaks away from convention, Days of Heaven is also a fairly accessible film too. It has a standard beginning, middle and end, a love story, and it does indeed climax with an exciting action scene that would not be uncommon in most other Hollywood films. Still, the more cinematically-savy people will get the most out of this film, and certainly find much to ponder about in terms of subtext, especially regarding it’s biblical content. Featuring an impeccably shot scene involving locust,  a story that mimics Genesis 20, and lighting that often suggest illumination, Days of Heaven certainly seems to be tying godliness to the American dream. While many people have been discussing the religious implications in Tree of Life, I honestly think this earlier Terrance Malick film gives it a run for it’s money.

After Days of Heaven, Terrence Malick would not return to film making for another 20 years. I’ve heard conflicting reasons for why this is the case, with some sources telling me Malick was simply exhausted after the massive editing process, while others have told me that he was unhappy with the way the film was edited. Whatever the case, I feel that this film is likely to stay as his final masterpiece. While films like Tree of Life  and The New World are certainly the work of a true visionary, they are ultimately bogged down by his insistence on using experimental and confusing narratives. Days of Heaven, however, is both a spectacle and a truly human work of art that will stay with you for a very long time. This and Bad Lands are enough to give Malick the distinction of being one of the best American film makers, and a most singular artist for the later half of the 20th century.

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R&B and Hip-Hop at the Grammy’s

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Credit to: pitchfork.com

Music’s biggest night is headed our way as the 55th Annual Grammy Awards will be live this Sunday night at 8pm eastern time on CBS.  Some of music’s biggest names will be performing, from Taylor Swift to Frank Ocean and most recently Justin Timberlake, who is not riding high so much on his failed first single “Suit & Tie”.

So who will be the biggest winners of the night? We already divulged into Record of the Year, but who will be crowned king in the rap and R&B fields? Here are my predictions as to who will win, should win, and was left in the dust.  Leave comments if you agree or disagree!

Best R&B Performance-

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Credit to- hiphop-n-more.com

Miguel- “Adorn”
Usher- “Climax”
Luke James- “I Want You”
Estelle- “Thank You”
Robert Glasper Experiment Featuring Ledisi- “Gonna Be Alright)”

Who will win-  This should be an easy win for Miguel as “Adorn” got a coveted nod for Song of the Year, and that it pretty much is the best of the bunch.  Grammy darling Usher could give him a run for his money, but this is a sure fire win for Miguel.

Who should win- Miguel.  Repeat what I said before.

Who was left out- UMMMMMMMMMMMMMM “Thinking About You” by Frank Ocean.  WTF.  How is this in the Record of the Year category and not in this one? It makes no sense.  Such a phenomenal R&B record and his vocals are haunting.

Best Urban Contemporary Album-

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Credit to: pitchfork.com

Frank Ocean- “Channel Orange”
Chris Brown- “Fortune”
Miguel- “Kaleidoscope Dream”

Who will win- Frank Ocean should be the only nominee here as far as I am concerned, and this will be his guaranteed win if he doesn’t get Album of the Year.

Who should win- Ocean.

Who was left out-  Let’s rephrase this with “Who should’ve been left out”.  Chris Brown’s homophobic ass.  Please go away.

Best Rap Performance-

Drake Featuring Lil Wayne- “HYFR”

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Credit to- Straighttothea.com

Nas- “Daughters”
Jay-Z & Kanye West- “Paris”
Kanye West, 2 Chainz, Big Sean & Pusha T- “Mercy”
Young Jeezy Featuring Andre 3000 & Jay-Z- “I Do”

Who will win- God this really is a tough one, no joke.  It’s between three- Nas, Jay-Z and Kanye.  All three songs are strong in their own way.  The Grammy’s love all three, but I think “Paris” will nudge the other ones.

Who should win- Not really a fan of “I Do” or “HYFR”.  Lyrically, “Daughters” is amazing and one of Nas’ best songs ever, so that would be my pick.

Who was left out-  Don’t kill me for saying this, but I happened to love “Beez In The Trap” by Nicki Minaj featuring 2 Chainz.  The album sucked but this was a shining example of a rather dull album.

Best Rap/Sung Collaboration-

Credit to: wikipedia.org
Credit to: wikipedia.org

Jay-Z & Kanye West featuring The Dream & Frank Ocean- “No Church In The Wild”
Nas Featuring Amy Winehouse- “Cherry Wine”
John Legend Featuring Ludacris- “Best You Ever Had (Tonight)”
Flo Rida featuring Sia- “Wild Ones”
Rihanna Featuring Jay-Z- “Talk That Talk”

Who will win-  It’s video was just as stirring as the song, so I would go with “No Church In The Wild”.  Ocean’s voice is very subtle yet powerful for a song of this magnitude.

Who should win- Either “Church” or “Talk That Talk”.

Who was left out-  SHOCKED and I’ve said this before, nothing for “Take Care” by Drake and Rihanna.  Such a phenomenal record.  I would’ve chosen the Chris Brown remix of “Birthday Cake” by Rihanna over “Talk That Talk” personally as well.

Best Rap Album-

Drake- “Take Care”
Lupe Fiasco- “Food & Liquor- The Great American Rap Album, Pt.1”

Credit to: Businessinsider.com
Credit to: Businessinsider.com

Nas- “Life Is Good”
The Roots- “Undun”
Rick Ross- “God Forgives, I Don’t”
2 Chainz- “Based on a T.R.U. Story”

Who will win- This is somewhat of a weak category, but Drake will finally earn his first Grammy after 9 nominations.

Who should win- Drake or Nas, the only two that I really think are that good for this category.

Who was left out- Either Macklemore or Kendrick Lamar.  God knows why 2 Chainz got in here, good lord.

 

Chatty Talk with Elise

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Frank Chris
Credit to Towleroad.com

Welcome back!

 

Well, well, well … By the looks of things, Chris Brown is up to it again.  Being a total waste of space that it!  So, as most of you already know, he & Frank Ocean were in an altercation a few days ago BUT what most of you may NOT know is that apparently Brown called Ocean a ‘F@*got’ AND threatened to shoot him… Right before he jumped him.  WOWWWW! Just when we think Chris Brown can’t possibly get more disgusting, he goes & proves us all wrong!  You know what’s even less okay then Chris Brown? Homophobia!! We don’t need anymore hate being thrown around then there already is! GO AWAY, CHRIS BROWN! You’re ugly behavior isn’t welcomed by anyone but Rihanna.  Have I mentioned Chris Brown is also being investigated for falsifying his community service records for when he assaulted Rihanna?  Keeps getting classier ….. frank chris

This isn’t really gossip but it’s definitely still worth sharing.. Darren Criss turns 26 earlier this week! You’re welcome!

Darren CrissGisele Bundchen and Tom Brady’s baby Vivian Lake is everything you probably expected.. Gorgeous, adorable & everything else in between.Brady Baby

Lets discuss the Russian woman who had a man’s name tattooed on her FACE after a single date!! ONE DATE people!! I’m a lover of love but I think you should have waited a few more dates sweetie!  Here’s hoping that all works out for her… Because if it doesn’t she’s going to have quite the story to explain to people!Lesya Toumaniantz