UIC Brings First Female Headliner to Spark in the Park

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UIC’s annual Spark festival is coming up this Friday! Spark will be held this year in Granderson Field, doors open at 2:30. Tix are $10 for UIC students, $25 for staff and alumni, and $45 for non UIC guests. Ticket prices will go up at the door so buy them now!

Purchase tickets here: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/uic-spark-2018-tickets-49491523479?aff=erelexpmlt 

Line-Up:

  • 2018 DJ Battle Winner @ 3:30pm
  • 2018 Battle of the Bands Winner – New House @ 4:15pm
  • FemDot @  5:00pm
  • Jussie Smollett @ 6:15pm
  • Rich The Kid @ 7:30pm
  • 2018 Cultural Showcase Winner – EKC @ 8:30pm
  • H.E.R. @ 9:00pm

This year Spark is proud to announce we will be having our first ever female headliner!

H.E.R. (Having Everything Revealed) is a 21-year-old contemporary R&B artist, who surfaced into the music scene in 2016. H.E.R. offers both a vulnerable and assured sound through the production and writing in her music. The California native artist has collaborated with other prominent musicians such as Daniel Caesar, Khalid, and Bryson Tiller.

Spark is also excited to give a festival experience to attendees this year. We will be having multiple acts, great food options, face painting stations, out door games and more! Come find out for yourself!

Wanna get familiar with all the Spark artists before the show? Check out this playlist!

Continue reading “UIC Brings First Female Headliner to Spark in the Park”

The Daily Blend’s April Top Ten 2018

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Wassuppppppppp everyone! IT’S FINALLY NICE OUTSIDE, WHAT A CONCEPT! I am so excited that it is finally warm and also that new good music is being released! This month’s edition of my music library is full of new releases, both released this month and this year. Keep reading if you’re wondering if certain albums made it on the list. Also, PS, sorry for this being later than I usually do this blog; not only has April been a good month for new music, but also it has been the busiest month of my entire year.

Continue reading “The Daily Blend’s April Top Ten 2018”

Looking For New Music?

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in the midst of procrastinating to study for finals, i put some playlists together on spotify.

i highkey have a bomb taste in music, so if you’re looking for something new, or something to fit a certain mood, check these playlists out:

(i PROMISE these are good)

1.)

for nights out with the girls / pregaming / promiscuous and saucy moods

2.)

f*ck boy rap, but like, good f*ck boy rap

Continue reading “Looking For New Music?”

Best Albums Of 2017

2017 is almost at an end and though it has been a terrible year for politics, and basically everything else, 2017 however, has been an incredible year for music. 

Back in March, I put out an article highlighting some of my favorite albums that had been released early on in the year. Since then, we have been graced with even more outstanding, 10/10, listen-from-start-to-finish albums, so I would like to take a moment to showcase my top 15 picks (in a very particular order) of 2017: 

15.) Ariel Pink – Dedicated To Bobby Jameson

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Dedicated To Bobby Jameson is Ariel Pink’s 11th studio album. The album is an intimate and humble piece, containing a combination of pop and rock anthems.

TOP SONGS:  I Wanna Be Young // Bubblegum Dreams // Do Yourself A Favor 

Continue reading “Best Albums Of 2017”

Frank Ocean Drops New Music

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This week, Frank Ocean aired the third episode of “blonded RADIO,” on his Beats 1 show. On previous episodes of “blonded RADIO,” Ocean premiered his songs, “Chanel,” and “Slide,” featuring Calvin Harris and Migos. On this most recent episode, Ocean ended the show with his newest song, “Biking” featuring Jay Z and Tyler, the Creator.

Talk about an iconic trio.

–  You can find “Biking” on SoundCloud  here  –

Tyler, The Creator, who is now back on Twitter after a brief disappearance, tweeted his lyrics to his verse on “Biking,” on Saturday afternoon. Lana Del Rey Responded with, “who else’s lyrics could these be !” and I automatically had high hopes for this song.

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I was not disappointed. I’ve always been a fan of Jay Z, an even bigger fan of Tyler, The Creator, and a disgustingly huge fan of Frank Ocean.

“Biking,” is a relatively mellow song, that for a reason I cannot explain, makes me feel the way I feel when I look at a painting by Vincent van Gogh.

Everyone interprets music in a different way, and every feeling is unique to the listener. And that’s the beauty in music.

With a slumbering sound and acoustic harmonies, “Biking” gives me a feeling of nostalgia for deep summer nights, and with summer just around the corner, this was great timing for Ocean to drop this hit.

Frank Ocean will always be one of my top favorite artists, and I strongly and whole heartily believe “Channel ORANGE,” and “Blonde,” are two of the greatest albums to have been produced of all time.

Ocean never lets us down with his music, and I can’t wait to hear what is yet to come from him.

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The Best Albums Of 2017 So Far

2016 blessed us with incredible new music. From Kanye’s The Life Of Pablo, to Chance The Rapper’s Coloring Book, and to in my opinion, the greatest album to have ever been produced, Frank Ocean’s Blonde, it was just a great year for music.

We’re three months into 2017, and the new music is starting to pour in. The year is still young, but here are some of the best new albums that have been released so far:

American Teen – Khalid 

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Khalid’s debut album, American Teen, is just the very beginning to the successful music career glowing in front of him. At only 18 years old, Khalid has made huge waves with his single, ‘Location,’ which can be found on American Teen. This album is emotionally crafted with soulful 90’s vibes and smooth vocals. American Teen is one of those rare albums that you can listen to from start to finish, without skipping any songs, and you’ll never get tired of hearing it. Highlights include: ‘Saved’, ‘Location’, and ‘Shot Down’

Mansionz – Mansionz

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Mansionz is a new duo featuring singer-songwriter, Mike Posner, and singer-producer, Blackbear. The self-entitled album consists of electronic-based hip-hop and R&B pop. It’s a unique combination that deserves more attention. The transitions from each song are flawless, and blends perfectly. Highlights include: ‘The Life Of A Troubadour’, ‘I’m thinking about horses’, ‘nobody knows’, and ‘My Beloved’

CollXtion II: Unsolved – Allie X

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Canadian singer-songwriter, Allie X, has been working on her second studio album, and it’s for sure a bop. Her sound can be described as edgy electronic pop, and it’s just different than anything else. Highlights include: ‘That’s So Us’ and ‘Too Much To Dream’

I See You – The xx

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I See You is The xx’s junior album, and in my opinion, their best. The xx have always been known for their calming and soothing vocals, and they lived up to expectations yet again. The production of their third album has been a step up from their past work, and it’s honestly beautiful. Highlights include: ‘Lips’, ‘Brave For You’, and ‘Performance’

Process – Sampha

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Heavy emotions can be found in Sampha’s debut LP. Process contains R&B roots, and vocals that sound almost haunting. Sampha rediscovers himself through his work, and you can hear the vulnerability in his LP.  Highlights include: ‘What Shouldn’t I Be?’, ‘Plastic 100ºC’, and ‘Take Me Inside’

I can’t wait to hear what else is yet to come in 2017, and I do have high expectations

A Spreading Deanfluenza

By some miracle, my first official post as a UIC Radio blogger is about an event I attended under the guidance of an experienced member- the incredible Pearl Shin! She graciously took me under her wing and influence and, thanks to all that, we successfully infiltrated a Northwestern KASA event: Seoulmates. Their Asian-American community, more specifically here, their Korean-American Student Association, was tight-knit and enthusiastic for their end-of-the-year event.

Photo by: Pearl Shin

Of course, this year was more hyped than ever; and even allowed outside guests (including us) to attend the event because of their incredible headliner! Northwestern KASA had managed to snag a growing Korean R&B sensation! Hailing all the way from Seoul Korea, young Kwon Hyuk, better known as DEAN, performed for the lucky people in attendance. This prodigious gentleman of only 23 years is steadfast in becoming one of the greatest cross-over acts to break into the music scene in Korea and the US. He has collaborated with in-demand artists and producers such as Eric Bellinger, EXO, Zico, Anderson Paak, and more.

 

Dean’s sensual and soulful sound captivated the crowd- not only with his voice but his charisma as a performer! As far as student production can go, Dean’s command of the stage was no joke, and it was hard not to be swept up in the overwhelming energy of the room. Despite his long travel time and lack of rest, his energy was high as he swaggered around the stage alone and roused the crowd. His nervous English endeared the audience and his cute poses for the camera only epitomized his adorability as a person.

Photo by: Pearl Shin

As for his concert setlist, it featured some of his popular US and overseas tracks, such as Pour Up, 21, Bonnie & Clyde, and D (Half Moon), as well as his hit single I’m Not Sorry featuring Eric Bellinger.

Social media chatter has definitely enhanced his career in Korea and other countries; so after witnessing this performance, it’s not hard to believe he’s come this far in his goal of bridging the divide between “western” mainstream and international music. If you want to follow Dean in his quest of bringing Korean R&B to the world, check out these links!

Instagram: @deantrbl

Twitter: @deantheofficial

Official website: officialdean.com

^^There are dates available for his upcoming shows, and coming up very soon he’ll be performing back to back shows at a club event in Los Angeles, CA on June 2nd and his own event in New York City, NY on June 3rd. Hopefully we’ll see him in Chicago again soon!

 

The Elle – 4 Chi City Radio Recap

Chicago R&B soul vocalist The Elle, came through to 4 CHI CITY RADIO, with new music and latest on updates. Here’s a recap of her interview.

The Elle

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B Roc – Name your top five favorite artists?
The Elle – In no particular order…

Stevie Wonder – He’s one artist that I have a really hard time selecting a favorite album of. His catalog is so rich musically, vocally and lyrically.

Amy Winehouse – Amy changed the way I listened to music, her songwriting is so bold, poetic and frank. She also has influenced to be very honest and unapologetic in my songwriting.

A Tribe Called Quest – I think I’m incapable of getting sick of Tribe… their music is timeless to me. Midnight Marauders is one of my all time favorite albums.

Minnie Riperton – the unsung soul songstress. Minnie is another artist who has great songwriting, it’s a shame most people don’t know her catalog outside of “Lovin’ You” (and maybe “Inside My Love”)

Erykah Badu – I’m a day one Badu fan, I used to steal the Baduizm album out of my mom’s room to listen to Appletree and Four Leaf clover. She is incomparable.

B Roc – What inspired you to become a singer/artist?
The Elle – Singing was my childhood dream but I gave up on it to pursue something practical. I was in the midst of figuring out what I wanted to do with my life when I lost a family member who happened to be a musician. I sang at the funeral and was given a prophecy by someone who said that I had a gift that was beyond just my voice and needed to use the gifts that God gave me, so here I am.

B Roc – Tell us about one of your biggest accomplishments as an artist? Or most memorable moment.
The Elle – Growing vocally is a big one, I’ve been taking lessons on and off for two years with jazz vocalist Michele Thomas. I didn’t have much confidence in my singing when I first started but the harder I work the better my voice gets and the more refined my ear gets as well.

B Roc – What’s something you want people to know about you as an artist?
The Elle – I’m not an artist you should expect a certain thing from. I’m always evolving and I do my best to put my entire self into my art. I’d like to think I’m a unique person so you never know what you’ll get. One day I’ll be singing a ballad, the next dat I may be singing you some gangsta rap song… That’s just me.

B Roc – What do you hate & what do you love about Chicago?
The Elle – I love how well-rounded Chicago is culturally. You have good food, so much to do, diversity, the lake, great music, and great art.

What I don’t like so much, is when I come back from visiting somewhere else and I’m hit in the face with the smell of urine in the air.

B Roc – What’s something about you, that you want people to know?
The Elle – I’m a very complex individual who is 100% her own person. I have a lot of stories to tell, and I hope that they inspire and resonate with people. If I can do that, I’ve fulfilled my purpose here on earth.

Want to know more about The Elle?
Check out her website www.theellemusic.com
Follow her via  facebook.com/theellemusic

Thanks for ROCKIN wit me!!! Roc4Chi_City
IG @rockwitb_roc @4chi_cityradio
Log on to uicradio.org Sunday nights 6-8pm
4 CHI CITY RADIO: Hosted by B ROC

R.Kelly says he wants to work with Trey Songz: 5 Reasons Why That Will Never Happen

In a recent interview with Hot97 R&B legend, R.Kelly was asked who would he like to work with and this seemingly traditional question took a turn when Kelly unveiled his answer. Kelly initially hesitated at first but than after some slight pleading and probbing, R. Kelly admitted he wanted to work with Trey Songz.

“I’m at my best when I’m wanted. I always wanted to take somebody and just do what their trying to do and really do it they way they trying to do. Cause I see where they trying to go, I know what they want to do, and I know exactly how to get there.  Their taking the elevator but where their trying to go they have to take the stairs. So I would take Trey Songz and tie him up and really Give him what it is he’s trying to do. The whole album….everything. look young fella this trying to do bam! “

“I look at everything and everything is about timing. I’m at my best when I’m wanted and incredible when I’m needed. so people have to realize that though.”

After hearing this my inner pessimist and I comprised a detailed list of reasons why this will never happen.

1. The R. Kelly shadow: Not every R&B artist falls into the R. Kelly shadow but if you started singing after the 90’s or even early 2000s than it’s likely you spent sometime in the “Kelly shadow.” Early in his career, it appeared as if every note and video from Trey was being compared to Kelly. Trey has been trying to escape the R. Kelly shadow for years and since clipping the cornrows and releasing “Neighbors Know My Name”, Trey has silenced some of the comparisons. Doing a full album with Kelly would not only bring back those comparisons but welcome them on a red carpet. Is this a wise move for Trey?

2. R.Kelly’s recent music: It’s fair to say that Kelly’s new music hasn’t been getting the reception that his earlier work has. On the other hand, Trey is beginning to peak and find his signature style.It seems like Kelly is in the process of reinventing himself once again. All said and done, it appears as if R.Kelly’s best work is behind him while Trey’s best work seems to be just over the horizon. In my opinion, his most recent work Trigga is his best work to date. Would it be a step back for Trey at this point?

3. Past beef: Kelly’s and Trey’s R&B beef has been well publicized. It all started with the Trapped In The Closet series. R.Kelly had fans and an uproar and on pins and needles for every chapter. Actually, if you look back on it TITC was the initial template for Fox-series Empire. Soon after, Trey began to make his own versions of TITC and Kelly quickly unleashed his lawyers on Trey and shut that down immediately.  Consequently, when R. Kelly tried his hand at autotune, Trey was one of Kelly’s harshest and loudest critics. Kelly than responded by shunning Trey existence all together choosing to not address his desire for all things trendy at the time. However, since than both Kelly and Trey have sinced buried the beef and spoke highly off each other and various media outlets.

4. Both are doing just fine: Neither of these artists need this collaboration. Trey Songz is on a steady incline in his career and Kelly’s face is solidly engraved on the R&B Mount Rushmore. R. Kelly can go on tour whenever he desires because of his extensive catalogue and the same goes for Trey because of versatility and hardcore fanbase.  Kelly made clear that he wants to feel needed and this situation. So could this be the deal breaker?

5. It just might be a good idea: Sometimes it’s as simple as that. Sometimes if something sounds perfect, logical, and makes sense we tend to reject it. I’m not sure why…I guess life is more interesting that way. This “good idea” theory along with ego is the reason why we might never hear a Lil’ Kim and Nicki Minaj record, Rihanna and Beyonce record, Eminem and Vanilla Ice (just kidding…well kinda). Good ideas are rarely realized.

So what do you think? Is this a good idea or bad idea? Could you really count out someone as great as R. Kelly out? Although, they speak to two different generations will the competitive nature smother this idea or better yet will it create another Best Of Both Worlds catastrophe. Let me know.

Follow Me on Instagram: @leofromthego

Taylor Mallory – 4 Chi City Radio Recap

Recently on 4 CHI CITY RADIO, R&B artist Taylor Mallory came through with new music, singing acapella, and more.. Check it below! Here’s a recap of his interview.

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Name your top five favorite artists?

Stevie Wonder – He is a musical genius and his song catalogue is timeless.

Earth, Wind, & Fire – They are my favorite band of all time because their music not only makes you feel good but it inspires you to do better in life. Plus, they have very unique melody in their songs.

Kanye West – I love his progressive and honest nature as an artist. I believe he stands for something and I believe that is very important as an artist to speak out on subject matters that some may be too afraid to speak out on or address.

Steely Dan – My writing and production year of 2014 was inspired by this duo. Their music by far as the best arrangement and sound of all time. I love how they use different musicians on their records and performances too. They were pretty much a pre-cursor to Hall & Oates.

Janelle Monae / John Mayer – it’s a tie between those two. I’m sorry. Lol. Janelle is just so powerfully brilliant with her music and message and I feel she doesn’t get the proper recognition. She’s an amazing singer. John Mayer’s “Room for Squares” was the highlight of my senior year in high school /freshmen year of college. Brilliant artist and great songwriter.

What inspired you to become a singer/songwriter?

My father would play a lot of great records and I just took to it at a very young age. I started out in a contemporary gospel group and we all learned at a young age how to be creative and express ourselves. That’s where the inspiration started.

Tell us about one of your biggest accomplishments as an artist? Or most memorable moment.

My biggest accomplishment as an artist was having my record “Footage” on the radio for 6 consecutive months and doing it independently with my team Level Next. My most memorable moment was performing in front of a packed crowd at one of Chicago’s popular music venues, Refuge. I mean to see fans sing along to your records is a great feeling!

What is something you want people to know about you as an artist?

I want people to know that I am an artist and a creative. My mission is to be as creative as I possibly can while contributing to the culture of music, specifically R&B. I feel that most people see R&B as just “baby making” music. However, there is so much more to it. Rhythm & Blues is the basis of Hip Hop, country, Rock, soul, electronic music and so many more genres. I would like to see R&B get more recognition for the culture that it brings. So, I just have high hopes in that regard.

But I am also apart of a collective called Level Next and we believe in doing good, while doing well. My level is next!

twitter @TaylorMallory IG @taylormallory

What do you hate & what do you love about Chicago?

I hate when people from Chicago pay money to see shows and they stand there and show no love to an artist… it happens too often.

I love the scenery and the food culture here. There is always something to do here.

http://www.levelnextmusic.com/the-artists/taylor-mallory/

Thanks for ROCKIN wit me!!!
IG @rockwitb_roc @4chi_cityradio
Log on to uicradio.org Sunday nights 6-8pm
4 CHI CITY RADIO: Hosted by B ROC