Bourgeois Brief: Lena Waithe is Vanity Fair’s latest cover star, SZA talks possible retirement, Run D.M.C. gets archived & more!
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Lena Waithe Covers Vanity Fair
Emmy-winning writer and actress Lena Waithe covers the new issue of Vanity Fair. In the cover story, she talks about her life before and after her Emmy, her appearance in the upcoming Ready Player One, the upbringing that led her to TV and film, and the importance of mentorship. She also talks about diversity in Hollywood. She tells Jacqueline Woodson, “it was a symbolic moment when Moonlight literally took the Oscar out of La La Land’s hand. It is a symbolic moment when Issa Rae’s poster is bigger than Sarah Jessica Parker’s. Now the hands that used to pick cotton can pick the next box office. . . . See what I’m saying? There’s a shift that’s happening. There’s a transition of power. But we still aren’t in power.” Read the full story at Vanity Fair.
Big Boi Signs New Deal with L.A. Reid
Rapper, and one-half of iconic duo Outkast, Big Boi is the first artist to sign with L.A. Reid’s HitCo. The move is somewhat controversial as Reid was ousted from Epic Records for sexual harassment allegations. HitCo is being distributed through EMPIRE, an large independent company. Both Reid and Big Boi have worked together before—Reid was the first to sign Outkast. Get additional details at Stereogum.
SZA Talks Retirement After Next Album
SZA is having a huge moment. She was nominated for 5 Grammys for her debut full-length, CTRL, and she’s literally everywhere, including a spot in a heavily circulated MasterCard ad. But the buzzy singer has hinted her next album might be her last. In a new Flaunt interview, she says that her quality of life has only worsened since finding music success and that she’ll hang up the mic after her CTRL follow up. But she also says this with a grin. So, we’ll see what happens. Read the full interview at Flaunt.
New Kendrick Lamar Biography Announced
Pitchfork contributor Marcus J. Moore will release The Butterfly Effect: How Kendrick Lamar Ignited the Soul of Black America. The book will be distributed by Simon & Schuster imprint Touchstone Books, and will tell the story of Lamar’s rise to the upper echelons of the music industry. Read more details and Marcus J. Moore’s work at Pitchfork.
Run D.M.C., Chic Archived by Library of Congress
Every year, the National Recording Registry archives 25 works that are deemed culturally significant. Among this year’s archive inductees are Run D.M.C.’s 1986 album Raising Hell and Chic’s “Le Freak”. Other artists archived include Fleetwood Mac, The Temptations, and Bill Haley and His Comets. Read the full list at the Library of Congress.
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT…
Drake announces work on new album, single with Murda Beatz [Billboard]
Angélique Kidjo Taps Blood Orange, Ezra Koening for Talking Heads cover album [Pitchfork]
Meshell Ndegeocello’s Ventriloquism reviewed [SPIN]
Chiwetel Ejiofor stars in new Come Sunday trailer [Vulture]
Jeezy announces his retirement [SPIN]
Food for thought
Pop music stans are a different breed of fan. They are devoted to their favorite singers (i.e. Beyoncé, Kesha, Katy Perry, Lady Gaga, etc.) and will draw blood to protect the images of their icons. EW’s Nolan Feeney takes a look at pop worship:
“[Michael] Eisele’s commitment to Kesha goes beyond that of most fans. He’s what you would call a stan — the hardcore superfans who collectively give themselves nicknames like Kesha’s Animals or Lady Gaga’s Little Monsters — and he has devoted much of his free time during the last few years to Kesha’s cause. As the human behind the @KeshaTODAY Twitter account, which has 17,000 followers, he has helped popularize the #FreeKesha hashtag that’s been used by celebrities such as Demi Lovato and Lady Gaga. He has taken part in petitions calling for Kesha’s creative freedom and organized numerous protests on her behalf, including one at the headquarters of her record label, where he projected messages such as “Sony Protect Your Artists” on the building’s exterior. Though he’s known and been in touch with Kesha as a fan since before her lawsuit, their relationship has recently attracted scrutiny: In March of this year, Dr. Luke’s lawyers asked a judge to subpoena Eisele, alleging in court documents that he and Kesha were “closely coordinating” to spread “defamatory statements and tarnish” the producer’s reputation, and the judge granted the request; Eisele is expected to go to court later this year.”
Read his full piece here.