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: Prince’s Memoir Nears Completion, MTV Resurrects Yo! MTV Raps, a New Basquiat Documentary & More!

Bourgeois Brief: Prince’s Memoir Nears Completion, MTV Resurrects Yo! MTV Raps, a New Basquiat Documentary & More!

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

Prince Memoir Nearing Completion

Two years after Prince’s death, Random House is reportedly readying an official memoir about the music superstar’s life.  ICM agent Esther Newberg, who is representing the book, shared that it would hit bookshelves by year’s end.  However, a Random House rep denies the book is on the 2018 publication schedule. Newberg shared details of the book deal on Variety’s Strictly Businesspodcast.  Read additional details at EW.

MTV Resurrects Yo! MTV Raps

MTV has spent most of the last year rebooting some of its most famous properties, including Jersey Shoreand TRL.  Now, it has plans to resurrect Yo! MTV Raps.  The show originally debuted in 1988 and provided a national platform for hip hop culture.  Before it returns to airwaves, Yo! MTV Rapswill host a 30thanniversary celebration at Brooklyn’s Barclays Center June 1.  Doug E. Fresh, Flavor Flav, and Ed Lover and Doctor Dré are all slated to appear. Read more at CNN.

B.B. King Blues Club Set to Close

After 18 years, New York’s B.B. King Blues Club and Grill will close its doors.  Like so many other New York establishments, the venue cited high rent as the reason for its closure.  The final show takes place April 29 and will feature Buddy Guy.  The club’s owners are reportedly seeking a new location but no further details are available at this time.  The club has been a fixture of Times Square, serving as a popular concert venue for black artists in blues, R&B, and hip hop. Find out more at Billboard.

New Basquiat Documentary Highlights Artist’s Early Years

Boom for Real, the new documentary highlighting artist Jean-Michel Basquiat’s teenage years, will hit theaters May 11.  The film, helmed by Sara Driver, explores his early work and struggles in late 1970s New York.  Some of the film’s highlights include previously unseen work, photos, and writings from Basquiat.  Get the full story at Rolling Stone.

Will Big Freedia Receive Her Due?

Big Freedia’s voice has become a mainstay in popular hip hop and R&B songs, with prominent features on Drake’s “Nice For What” and in Beyoncé’s “Formation” video.  But her likeness is invisible, as neither artist recruited her for their videos.  Myles E. Johnson writes that Big Freedia is undeniably the artist who has put bounce music on the national map, but “she is also a gay man with dark skin whose gender performance is extremely deviant from the binary. This is why we often hear the magic of Big Freedia, but rarely see the magician.” Read more at Noisey.

Tidbits

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT…

New Tyler the Creator, “Rose-Tinted Cheeks” [Pitchfork]

Nicki Minaj set for SNLseason finale [Billboard]

See the tracklisting for J. Cole’s KOD[Complex]

Rae Sremmurd and Travis Scott team up for “Close” [SPIN]

Video: Moses Sumney “Quarrel” [YouTube]

Food for thought

Love it or hate it, Shonda Rhimes’ Scandalends its seven-season run tonight.  Vulture’s Matt Zoller Seitz weighs in on the show’s legacy:

“It was a series that could put a black woman front and center, then assert the same writing privileges that had been accepted on shows driven by white men for 20 or 30 years: You don’t have to like lead characters as long as you find them interesting. And Olivia, a lawyer and former White House aide turned master of spin, was fascinating.”

Read the full think piece here.

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

Bourgeois Brief: Kanye West Announces 2 New Albums, TIME’s 100 Most Influential People List Champions Diversity, New Prince Music & More!

Bourgeois Brief: Kanye West Announces 2 New Albums, TIME’s 100 Most Influential People List Champions Diversity, New Prince Music & More!

The Age of the Smart Artist

The Age of the Smart Artist