Parvenu Weekly

Art and Artists
  • Iris

    IRIS Pairs legendary 87-year-old documentarian Albert Maysles with Iris Apfel, the quick-witted, flamboyantly dressed 93-year-old style maven who has had an outsized presence on the New York fashion scene for decades. More than a fashion film, the documentary is a story about creativity and how, even in Iris' dotage, a soaring free spirit continues to inspire. IRIS portrays a singular woman whose enthusiasm for fashion, art and people are life's sustenance and reminds us that dressing, and indeed life, is nothing but an experiment. Despite the abundance of glamour in her current life, she continues to embrace the values and work ethic established during a middle-class Queens upbringing during the Great Depression.

    "I feel lucky to be working. If you're lucky enough to do something you love, everything else follows"

    See Trailer below

    source: IMBD
  • Ms. Lauryn Hill Performed For Yall

    Ok, how do I begin? So we went to see Ms. Lauryn Hill at the Keswick Theater right outside of Philadelphia on March 28th. I’m not writing a review about this Lauryn Hill concert. I’ll just give you my honest take on things. Ms. Lauryn Hill is an incredible talent but you already knew that. You know the history also; she’s an awesome musician, singer and rapper, released one solo album in 1998 that’s still receiving accolades and breaking records in this very year of 2015. However, Ms. Hill has totally missed the mark on the artist and fans relationship and here’s why. 

    Lauryn Hill of course comes to every show late; we expect this by now because she’s notorious for it. She wasn’t four hours late this time but just shy of two. And as the lights dim and she takes her seat and begins to strums a guitar along with her band a melody begins that you want to be familiar with, you’re so excited at this point! Is it Everything Is Everything?” is it Doo Wop? no… it’s not. You don’t know this song, you’ve never heard it. Now you think to yourself maybe its new, maybe it’s a cover because a few folks are singing along, they must be mega-fans and you’ve not reached that level so you relax and enjoy the opening number and wait for the next song to begin. Ten whole songs later you still have no clue what the hell this woman is singing; did you buy the wrong album? Was there a deluxe version you missed out on? NO. Ms. Lauryn Hill does what she damn well pleases and doesn’t perform anything you are familiar with and now you along with many others are up out your seat but not dancing, back at the bar because you aint’ missing nothing but another drink at this point.

    This is the night summed up… I think it’s a huge mistake for an artist to do an entire set of unpopular or not widely known music, especially when you only have one album out… also doesn’t help when it’s over 15 years since its release. Granted The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill is old, it is a masterpiece and fans want THAT. Instead we got “The Narcissism of Lauryn Hill” which doesn’t feel like an “artists decision" to change the show but more of an IDGAF and this is what I want to do. Now, I will say this, the show was far from bad. Musically excellent, the band was phenomenal, but you have to please the supporters who are putting money in your pockets. When the first song the audience responds to collectively, more than half way into the show is "All Falls Down" That's absolutely terrible. This was never released as a single and her cut never made Kanye West’s final version, it’s a clear that the audience was desperate for familiarity at this point.

    I'll give you this to take away; a music lover or musician would absolutely love the set. But an average fan who just wanted to hear a familiar tune, dissect the lyrics or see the woman who actually sang the song you’ve been belting into your hair brush in front of the mirror for the past decade perform it live, you'd probably leave upset and unfulfilled. A show that has no opening acts and starts at "9" but actually quarter to 11, with a body of music you aren't familiar with, unidentifiable covers of known singles or "classics" feels like a letdown. 

    Now I'll chew on some of my words if this would at all discourage you from actually going to see Ms. Lauryn Hill live because that is not my intent or mission with this. The woman is indeed a musical genius. I don’t know if it's the decision to not conform to what the masses want and remain true to her artistic truth or just rebel but the show put on two hours late is well worth the wait, it’s just not fan friendly. Ms. Lauryn Hill might as well have been a new artist showcasing new music, but go and have an open Mind or be disappointed. I was confused.  

    photo by Wei Shi

  • The Roots Picnic 2015

    It’s that time again...  The 8th annual Roots Picnic will be Saturday May 30th at Philadelphia’s Festival Pier. Of course the lineup is packed with awesomeness but we're really looking forward to the incomparable E.Badu and A$AP Rocky. #JustBeingHonest 

    Check the lineup below

    image: okayplayer

  • The Return of The Hummingbird

    This past weekend some the crew here at Parvenu decided to attend a show put on by the amazingly beautiful and extremely talented singer Tweet. Tweet has faded in the background of the music scene for the past couple of years; I chose my words wisely in saying faded because she hasn’t totally disappeared as some may think. Having released an EP "Simply Tweet" in 2013 and lending her vocals to other musicians and singers in the industry doing features, she'd taken a back seat and was only seen if you were looking for her. 

    If you’ve ever taken a listen to Tweets music it’s easy to identify her soul. The music is a representation of truth and emotion from the perspective of a vulnerably honest woman experiencing love and life. We’re used to her being an open book so when The Southern Hummingbird took a break for years with no explanation it left her fans confused and she’s been missed terribly, however... The return is in the making and one of the first steps taken was to gather a clan of fans in an intimate setting at the Hard Rock Cafe in Philadelphia and put on a show, remind us why we fell in love with her the first time.

    And if you’re like us and want to know what led to the break and where her head is this time around- we spoke with her the night before the gig and got all the deets! Stay tuned for that in Parvenu's upcoming third issue but take a look at the singer’s playful rendition of “Turn Da Lights Off” below. 

     Khalif M

  • Side Show at Yale

    International multi-media Artist and friend to Parvenu Mag Pamela Joseph invites you to a group show at the Yale School of Art, Side Show opening January 13, 2015. Joseph will also be participating in an all free and open to the public a panel discussion on Monday, Jan. 26 at 6:30 p.m. at 36 Edgewood Ave. The discussion will follow a performance by Coney Island Sideshows by the Seashore at 5:30 p.m, sponsored by the Traphagen Alumni Speakers Series and Yale Office of Student Affairs. 

    Side Show” presents more than 70 works by 29 artists — including Diane Arbus, Otto Dix, John Waters, and Riva Lehrer — ranging from the mid-18th century to the present. The show includes original sideshow banners, props, promotional cards, photographs, historical ephemera, and works of art inspired by circus and carnival culture from the Yale University Art Gallery (YUAG), Yale Medical School Library, the Museum of Modern Art in New York City, the International Center of Photography, School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and private collections.

    For more information Click here

  • Black Messiah

    After a 14 year album gap D'Angelo's Black Messiah was released at Mdnight (12/14/14).

    Stream it here. Get it here! Rejoice in this for a while.

    Black Messiah track list:
    1. Ain't That Easy
    2. 1000 Deaths
    3. The Charade
    4. Sugah Daddy
    5. Really Love
    6. Back in the Future (Part I)
    7. Till It's Done (Tutu)
    8. Prayer
    9. Betray My Heart
    10. The Door
    11. Back in the Future (Part II)
    12. Another Life

  • Spotlight: Good Girl

    Aren’t you in the mood for another good R&B group? A new “Girl group” at that? Well we got you covered… meet Megan Nicolle, Morgan (JL), Bobbie (Courtney) and Arielle; they make up Good Girl.  

    It’s been a while since we’ve seen an all female group that’s captured our attention. I recently had the pleasure of meeting these young ladies while attending an event for songstress Syleena Johnson in Philly, their hometown. These girls hit the stage and were nothing less than amazing. All, not some but ALL of them can sing. So any question of what is it that might set these four girls apart from the rest could be their individual vocal abilities; exhibited when they went into an En Vogue cover, which gave the different members a chance to be heard individually. Proving that they all have talent [there are no filler vocals here]. The harmonies were nice and mellow, choreography on point and their set was structured perfectly.   

     So after witnessing them perform there is no question as to why they’re booked! Good Girl has been extremely busy from tree lighting ceremonies to shows in N.Y; word is spreading fast about Philly’s newest sensation. So if you want to get more familiar or a good listen to Good Girl for yourself… or Download their mixtape 90's Kinda Girl here!

    And just in time for the Holidays Listen to Perfect Christmas by the girls below.

     Tameka Nash


  • Spotlight: Amber Sauer

    Sometimes we feature newcomers that our readers are somewhat familiar with which is a good thing, but sometimes we find those hidden gems that we need to introduce you to! Miss Amber Sauer is the latest addition to that list.

    After coming across her single That’s OK (Self Talk), we’re officially on the lookout. Having a background in gospel music, singing on different choirs and also background vocals for Kelly Price has shaped her personal style and delivery into something special. The song is a breath of fresh air, its relatable and fun. We feel like Music today has been looking for something reminiscent of the days where your mother and grandmother didn’t side-eye one another when a song came on the radio. Like soul music, Soul music has always been a genre driven by emotion, sounds of joy, pain, love or anything passionate and true. No matter what’s driving it, it has to be greatly executed and believable to the audience and Amber, we believe you girl!

     That’s Ok definitely does the job in filling that void for something new but familiar to bop to. The beat is funky, vocals are flawless and production great, thanks to the one and only B-Slade (Tonex). We hope to be hearing more from Miss Sauer in the future.

     Check out the video below & get That’s OK (Self Talk) on iTunes now!

    Tameka Nash/ Photo: Amber Sauer Facebook

  • Spotlight: Mary J's London Sessions

    Mary J. Blige has always been an artist to stay on my radar for her artistry. Her albums are like period pieces in a way. I can recall the hairstyles she sported, fashions and the energy each project produced. It’s like when you think about Mike Jack’s Thriller Era and instantly recall the studded leather jacket. It’s an unspoken commitment artists make to the movement of their project, a part of the image they want us to receive.

    Mary J. does that well. Her product is well thought out... for the most part- sans the Burger King incident. So when I heard that she decided to move to London for some time to record a new project I got a little excited to see what would become. The mission was to experiment with a new sound she'd taken a liking to and play in a new genre with the help of some of the top artists and producers who are currently running that show. And while the crossover is always a big risk for artists, what does she have to lose?

    After reigning in the music biz for 20+ years now, Mary has earned a spot that she cannot be moved from. Critical evidence shows a decline in her popularity, we would be lying to say she’s not remained relevant through the many changes the music industry has encountered during her tenure and has even conformed to some. And while The Queen of R&B has hopped the pond and landed her feet in the Pop genre, it doesn’t read conformity but pretty authentic actually.

    After listening to The London Sessions signs that this may have been a project unconsciously in the making for years now appear with sounds peaking in and out of Mary’s last few efforts. Album fillers like Fade Away, What Love Is and Smoke from 2008’s The Growing Pains could easily come across as tracks left on the cutting room floor from The London Sessions with their absence of heavy bass and R&B style production that the other tracks on that project possess. Minimal instrumentation or simple arrangements move from that album and onto others like My Life II, which produced a sound similar sound with power ballads like Empty Prayers and Need Someone.

    The London Sessions is a solid effort and a testament to the importance of growth in artistry. If anything that’s what’s sold us all on Mary over the years. With the ever growing popularity of British artists and their sound taking over the airwaves, these “Sessions in London” prove to be some of the best she’s had in a long time.

     The London Sessions is available in the U.S. on Dec 2nd.

  • Remembering Oscar de la Renta

    Legendary Dominican American fashion designer Oscar de la Renta has died at the well-lived age of 82. A name that’s traveled from the white house to the red carpets around the world for decades and has had an impact for half a century of fashion is not a fashion house that would nearly fade but should live forever in the history books.

    Best known to the current generation for his red carpet gowns and eveningwear, de la Renta has done and is so much more than that. Those who are newer to Fashion culture probably wouldn’t know his history, even with some of their favorite labels like Lanvin and Balmain. Labels he’s worked for many years ago and that have recently jumped ship from their couture roots to being best known, again in this current generation as everyday wear.

    Cause of death leads towards de la Renta’s history with cancer, which he spoke about being “totally free” at The Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) a year after his diagnosis.

    “Yes, I had cancer. Right now, I am totally clean. The only realities in life are that you are born, and that you die. We always think we are going to live forever. The dying aspect we will never accept. The one thing about having this kind of warning is how you appreciate every single day of life.”

    We suggest aspiring fashion minds take this opportunity to reflect and research the history that is Mr. Oscar de la Renta. We can only know where we’re going if we know where we’ve come from, right?

    May Oscar de la Renta Rest Peacefully.


  • Spotlight: Chartel

    Meet Chartel, Philadelphia based singer/songwriter originally from the DMV, Chartel has shared the stage with some of your favorite artists. Performing as a background singer for BET Music Matters' artist Leah Smith, she has appeared on BET's 106th & Park, 2010 BET Honors Celebration, and numerous other stages along the East Coast. As a regular feature with jazz band, Vertical Current, Chartel has opened for Grammy Award winning Robert Glasper, and 2X Grammy Nominee Eric Roberson. In addition, she has had the honor of performing musical tributes to soul singer Carol Riddick and legendary producer James Poyser of The Roots.

    But Chartel is now ready to take center stage with the release of her debut single "Make Up Your Mind to Love"! With a sound and writing style described as 'pop-soul', it is also the charisma, charm, and vulnerability of Chartel's live performances that leaves listeners begging for more.

    I am excited to share my point of view as a songwriter with this single and music that is yet to come. I'm a very contemplative introspective person and I hope that listeners will hear that and connect with it." Of her debut single she says, "At its core, Make Up Your Mind to Love is an admittedly ambitious declaration of unwavering love for someone who hasn't quite shown the same in return...

    In 2013, she was nominated as Best New Artist in Philadelphia at the Philly Hip-Hop Awards hosted by Urban Celebrity Magazine. She is active in music education and has also graced the theatrical stage, starring in and supporting productions throughout the greater Philadelphia region. So keep an eye out and your ears open for this one! Take a listen to Make Up Your Mind to Love below and download it for later, you know, when you cant get it out of you head and want to hear it again.


  • Spotlight: Dante Kennedy

    Howard Dante K. Kennedy, born September 24th, 1987 began playing the drums at the age of 3 on pots and pans to classic Disney movies and under the tutelage of his father, a well know musician in the gospel genre. Becoming quite well known in the Philadelphia area as just a drummer he knew that he needed to break out on his own as an overall performer.

    Dante started his own Production Company "V4texx Music Group", and began to find his sound as an artist. With his unique vision, in 2007 he released an album entitled The Marriage of Rhythm and Rhymes, a project with a compilation of different artist. With hopes to expand his audience Dante began to build relationships by spreading his music locally and around the globe.

    After sharing his music with different labels and experiencing the politics of artistry Dante continuously pushed and attracted Travie McCoy's attention while on tour as a drum tech. McCoy, intrigued by his hustle then had him record in Miami at the Hit Factory and Dante joined McCoy's label "Batsquad". It was summer 2013 when Travie released Love Hate, a track with some of the members of Batsquad, Dante, AX, Siya (Sisterhood of Hip Hop) and McCoy.  This afforded him great opportunities and more motivation to continue on his path. Dante has appeared on The Ellen DeGeneres Show and The Queen Latifah show playing drums for McCoy but hopes to come back as an artist. 

    Currently working on a project Dante released his new single, "You Don't Belong" feat. Corey Lee, and in 24 hours, & it went Global catching attention of fans everywhere. His fan base includes Taiwan, Germany, Australia, Denmark, South America, the U.S, and more. 

    Listen to You Don’t Belong below and which is available on iTunes, Amazon, and many other online music stores.

    Story: Tameka Nash

    Photo: Khalif Moore

  • The Revolt TV Music Conference 2014


    Revolt TV Music Conference will be in Miami Beach, FL this year. This year the three-day series of events solely constructed for networking will be one of the most important events to newbies in the business! Word on the official site states The REVOLT Music Conference provides an environment where technology meets influencers, music executives, entrepreneurs, songwriters, designers, producers, bloggers, students, brand managers, marketing executives, publicists, music artists and more.

    Keynote speakers include Revolt Founder/CEO P.Diddy, Def Jam Co-founder/Hip-Hop legend Russell Simmons, Epic Records Chairman/CEO L.A. Reid, Clear Channel Chairman/CEO Bob Pittman and many more. The one-of-a-kind forum designed to help guests do one thing... understand and navigate the evolution of the music business.

    So if you are interested, Join Revolt TV on October 16-19.

    Registration info is HERE.


    A Group show of atomized paint at The Hole in NYC

    Summer exhibition in the main galleries, Go With The Flow, looking at the diverse and contemporary uses of sprayed paint. From aerosol to airbrush and further into the field of atomized paint, these artworks range from the slickly gradiented to the more surreptitiously sprayed, with a lot of flying paint in between.

    Running until August 23, 2014

    Michael Dotson

    Greg Bogin Evan Gruzis Eric Cahan
    Eric Cahan Zane Lewis Austin Lee
    Jesse Edwards Dennis Hoekstra
  • Warten am Waldrand or Waiting at The Edge of the Forest

    Calling attention to Dutch artist and illustrator Femke Hiemstra's show at Roq La Rue Gallery. Included in the exhibition are graphite drawings, painted vintage book covers, and pieces on found antique objects, part of her recognizable, signature types of works. All framed in vintage frames bought at flea markets and restored by her father, this body of work is a sequel to the dark fairytale-like imagery from her previous exhibitions. Cleverly mixing cute with scary, her detailed paintings and drawings could be both seen as endearing dreams and creepy nightmares, but often also have a sense of morbid humor in them.

    She draws her inspiration from everyday life and subtle events she likes noticing in the animal world. Incorporating a good amount of fantasy, her creations work as triggers for an observer’s imagination. Each piece tells a fantastic story, starring mostly animal characters, often mutilated and almost always engaged in random human activities. Examples include Pooch Patrol showing two old guard dogs at work, or You Sure It’s Pure telling a story about a duck that’s illegally buying sushi, or The Crafties, depicting two fox cousins knitting wet spiderwebs into rivers.


  • Unlocking The Truth

    While most eighth graders are dealing with their parents singing trip slips, the pre-teens who make up the Metal Trio Unlocking The Truth are singing record contracts! Malcolm Brickhouse, 13, Jarad Dawkins, 12, and Alec Atkins, 13 are the most talked about “new artists” in the past few weeks. Three young boys straight out of Brooklyn who have been seen many times playing around the streets of NY have left the curbside and are officially headed to the stage!

    Just this past week they’ve signed a multi album record deal with Sony and they’re touring the states on the Vans Warped Tour this summer. Tabatha Dawkins [mother of Jarad] told the New York Daily News. “What started out as play dates went to Times Square and now this. It’s been one great thing after another.”

    We’ve all witnessed really young talent take off, its nothing new but we haven’t seen this happen in this genre. Is the world ready for pubescent metal rock stars? We’ll have to wait to see… but until then check out one of their street performances below!

     img source

  • "Synthesis” Gallery Exhibit

    Previously featured Artist John Singletary's "Synthesis" series will be featured as part of the R.S.V.P. 4: An Invitational summer group show at the LG Tripp Gallery in Philadelphia.

    Information Below!