Uptown Bourgeois is an arts, news, and culture blog created by New York-based freelance writer Jefferey Spivey. UB explores universal themes through a black, queer lens. 

Bourgeois Brief: Michelle Obama Announces Memoir Release, Laverne Cox Debuts First Single, Black Panther Rules Second Weekend & More!

Bourgeois Brief: Michelle Obama Announces Memoir Release, Laverne Cox Debuts First Single, Black Panther Rules Second Weekend & More!

Your daily dose of art, news, and pop culture headlines, and a signal boost for creators of color.

 

Michelle Obama to Release Memoir in November

Former first lady Michelle Obama will release her first memoir.  Becoming is due November 13 and will be published by Crown Publishing Group.  “I talk about my roots and how a girl from the South Side found her voice,” she tweeted Sunday.  She’ll head out on an international book tour later this year.  Read Crown Publishing’s synopsis and get additional details at EW.

Laverne Cox Makes Surprise Foray Into Music

Laverne Cox surprise released her first single and video last week.  “Beat For the Gods” is a high-energy dance track that’s equal parts camp and a tribute to vogue culture.  Cox talked about the single and her burgeoning music career with OUT.  See the video below.

Black Panther Rules Box Office for Second Consecutive Weekend

Despite an onslaught of high-profile new releases, none could dethrone Black Panther.  The megahit film pulled in an additional $108 million.  The movie’s second frame intake is second only to Star Wars: The Force AwakensBlack Panther has pulled in nearly half a billion dollars domestically in just 10 days.  Additionally, the soundtrack scored another week in the top spot.  Get more details and figures at Variety.

Mary J. Blige, Common Announced as Oscar Performers

This Sunday’s Oscars ceremony will have quite the diverse roster for its musical performances.  Mary J. Blige, Common, Andra Day, Miguel, and Sufjan Stevens are all scheduled to perform their selections from the Best Song category.  Blige is also up for Best Supporting Actress.  The Oscars air March 4 at 8 p.m. Eastern on ABC. Read more at EW.

Stars Call For Stronger Latino Representation at Impact Awards

The message was loud and clear at this weekend’s 21st Annual Impact Awards.  Latino representation in Hollywood is abysmal, and it’s time for change.  In her acceptance speech for Outstanding Performance in a Motion Picture, Aubrey Plaza pointed out that no Latina has ever won the Best Actress Oscar.  Head to Variety for additional highlights.

Tidbits

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT…

Flying Lotus contributing music to sci-fi thriller Perfect [Pitchfork]

Teacher brings the Black Panther handshake to the classroom [EW]

Glowing reviews for Janelle Monae’s “Make Me Feel” [Pitchfork]

Roxanne Gay throws her hat in the ring to write Batgirl movie [Variety]

Mavis Staples talks about her second act [Rolling Stone]

Food for thought

This year’s Grammys reminded us of the taut relationship between hip hop and the Recording Academy.  However, the Brits, the Grammys’ British counterpart, awarded its top prize to Stormzy, a rapper in the popular grime genre.  Billboard’s Dan Hancox thinks the Grammys could learn a thing or two from that move:

The genre's outsider status has been transformed in the last 18 months, with Skepta winning the Mercury album prize for his Konnichiwa LP, and his crew Boy Better Know winning regular festival headline slots, along with Stormzy. The industry has been very keen to catch up and engage with a scene that -- essentially given no other choice -- has stoically built its own parallel infrastructure, through YouTube channels like SB:TV and GRM Daily. Both Stormzy and Skepta released their albums independently, and seem determined to maintain that status – it hasn't hurt their reputations, or their sales.”

Read his full piece at Billboard.

If you liked this Bourgeois Brief, share it with your friends and stay tuned Monday through Friday for more updates.

 

Bourgeois Brief: Donald Glover Talks Race in Hollywood, Paramount Teases New Trayvon Martin Docuseries, Gina Rodriguez Stars in and Produces Netflix Rom-Com & More

Bourgeois Brief: Donald Glover Talks Race in Hollywood, Paramount Teases New Trayvon Martin Docuseries, Gina Rodriguez Stars in and Produces Netflix Rom-Com & More

Podcast: Do We Stand to Gain Anything from Clapback Culture?

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