Category Archives: Music

CD Vs Digital: Are CD’S a thing of the past?

Ever wondered where that favourite CD of yours disappeared too? Surely it’s not just me, that misses the era of buying a shiny, circular disc I could see my reflection on the back? I remember the first CD I ever bought. It was Destiny’s Child album and although I was twelve, I officially became an adult that day. So to speak. It went straight into my yellow Alba all in one stereo. There was a 2 tape-deck, followed by a CD insert that sat right at the top. I loved it. 

This article was long overdue! I look back and think why I put this off, maybe because we live in a digital age and my nostalgia about the good old days would somehow mean I’m not in with the times. Well, to hell with the times! The near ‘death (or actual death) of the CD has left my once collectable, non-scratched discs with the case still in-tact, worn out with Mariah’s album cover missing. Sorry, Mariah, I’ve been travelling a lot recently. Still, I want my CD’s back. The eclectic near-perfect album collection I almost convinced myself to do a boot sale over, was how good of a collection I have.

 

Photo by: Yanko Peyankov: Unsplash


I remember taking my time in HMV, spending hours in the store trying to find the right album to add to my collection. Sometimes I’d look around and not buy anything, only to realise I couldn’t find my favourite artist. So I’d settle for a DVD. Sometimes I discovered something new. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve legally downloaded tunes in my time, had the iPod and engage with most things Mp3; the digital age is here to stay. I just miss the ‘CD.’

Photo: Mick Haupt-Unsplash
Still, CD’S give you that collectible items feel…

When I’m on the go, there’s no other way to listen to music other than digitally. However, the last CD I think I bought was Good Kid, M.A.A.D City, in Chicago at the time. The excitement around the album and finally getting my hands on the CD in the middle of Chi-town as a tourist is a buzz you can’t get online. The sleeve notes, the lyrics, album cover and the actual CD to put in my CD player, was an experience. I’ll even buy a vinyl of an artist I’m less passionate about just to prove my point, that physical and original is where it’s at! Nothing beats that quality sound.

The concept of buying a CD in droves may be somewhat “gone” but not forgotten. To pay tribute, here’s my top 20 album playlist (10 was impossible) in no particular order.

  1. Destiny’s Child –Destiny’s Child 
  2. Michael Jackson’s –Thriller
  3. Usher – My Way
  4. Beyoncé – Crazy in Love
  5. Shola Ama Much Love. UK R&B crooner of the 90’s!
  6. Lauryn Hill – The Miseducation Of Lauryn Hill
  7. Oasis – What’s the Story Morning Glory? If you’re like me and grew up in the 90s in the UK, this was it. (You know who you are).
  8. Aaliyah – One in a Million RIP.
  9. Sting – Ten Summoner’s Tales. The original blue-eyed Soul singer, yes. Thanks mum! 
  10.  Aretha Franklin – Aretha Now ^
  11. Mariah Carey – The Emancipation of Mimi…
  12. Notorious BIG; Ready to die
  13. BIG –Life After death RIP.
  14. So Solid Crew –They Don’t Know. If you’re like me and went to school in the 2000s; this was the soundtrack of my childhood & possibly any Rap/Urban act from the UK today!
  15. Kendrick Lamar – Good Kid, M.A.A.D City.
  16. Nas – Illmatic 
  17. Aaliyah – Age Ain’t Nothing but a Number
  18. Usher – Confessions 
  19. 2Pac All Eyes on Me. (Would I be cheating if I say pretty much anything he released? RIP 2Pac. 
  20. A Tribe Called Quest – The Anthology!

That wasn’t as easy as it looks; now for the Honourable Mentions.

Photo by Dome Dussadeechettakul on Pexels.com

(Artist or Albums’ respectively).

  • Brandy. ‘Vocal bible’ all Brandy.
  • Aaliyah ~ AALIYAH. Rest in Peace.
  • Usher – 8701, Raymond V Raymond, Here I Stand & the list goes on..
  • Jodeci – The Show, The Party, The After Party. PS: I had no access to Jodeci’s album being a kid when it came out. I’ve got my digital favourites now. Too many options I wonder; exactly why albums should pretty much make a full comeback & Stay, I want to Touch the sleeve..
  • Lil Wayne – The Carter 2 (Too many Carters’ he more than made the list)!
  • 50 Cent – Get Rich or Die Tryin
  • Jon B – Cool Relax. The original blue-eyed crooner no, yes! 
  • Kirk Franklin – The Rebirth.
  • Destiny’s Child: The Writing’s On the Wall
  • 2 Face- Face 2 Face
  • D’Angelo – Brown Sugar. Again, like Jodeci, there are some albums I want to see and not stare at the song titles before checkout. 
  • Funky Diva’s 90s compilation. Yes, we’re squeezing that in too. From Whitney, to Mariah vocal legends and epitome girl group’s too. (The first CD I ever owned, long before I was old enough to by a CD). RIP to the Legend Whitney Houston!
  • Bob Marley RIP. (Too many hits)
  • Prince alone gets a shout out bar none! RIP and both Great Legends. 

There we have it, my album playlist collection with the odd 1 or 2, maybe 3 CD’S ‘passed down’ to my teen years. What are siblings for!

Are CD’s a thing of the past or will it one day be seen as a prized possession? What albums would you include in your playlist?

Happy Listening! 

Oh Beyoncé

No1 seeing you

Beehive fan, regular fan or just a plain ole’ music lover, one thing Beyoncé will always lead in and be the best at are live shows. She knows how to bring a show to life, and definitely the best live performer today. Momentum, hype, and all the build-up to one main event Beyoncé; as with the rest of her fans can say, they left fulfilled. Being a Coachella fan, there was no getting past the ‘Watch Live videos.’ The introduction of Ms headliner herself, whose face you couldn’t see not until after one girl beat the drum, fiercely looked into the camera and indirectly told viewers to get ready for a showdown. Rather, fans were not ready for what was about to go down. As the dancers and marching band members fade away we see the Queen Bee, in an Egyptian inspired outfit headpiece included and she indeed, looked like a Queen.

beyonce_en_el_festival_de_coachella_vestida_de_balmain

Her entrance began with her solo debut; Crazy In Love. With all the pomp & pageantry, her segment felt like a concert in itself. The horns and bass instruments playing in the background, her message at intervals and message overall in terms of the hierarchy of Black women was touching. As with an atmosphere of excellence and history being made (Beyonce is the first black woman to headline Coachella), an array of Black culture and pride, as alumni from HBCUs stood center stage. It’s fair to assume that the theme of the show was not unintentional and anything in-between was well thought out. She might just have an appreciation for such institutions, but one thing you can’t take from her, is she uses her platform to do more than just sing. No-one is alienated, she sings and there’s power, she performs and she’s effective. You don’t have to be a die-hard fan to be moved when she’s on stage. The 10/15 minute segments I watched were okay, but it didn’t do enough justice. After seeing her full Coachella performance (lasting up to hours), the excitement I felt missing from music was back.

There are few performers who have the ability to hold your attention, Beyoncé is definitely one of them. Look away or leave the room, you just might miss something.

Dancers

Her transitions into each song, the musical production, dancers and marching band were all concerts in itself. From Crazy in Love, to paying homage (down south) with Juvenile’s ‘Back That Azz Up’ followed by the anthem ‘Freedom,’ she then took us to church with ‘Lift Every Voice’ by Melinda Doolittle. The Caribbean influences came through with Dawn Penn’s ‘No No No‘, also representing Africa with ‘Zombie’ by Fela Kuti. She slayed ‘Formation’ followed by ‘Sorry,’ but her entire show was unapologetic.

Coachella has been on my to do list as one of those annual events to attend, and I’m kicking myself I didn’t get to see her but boy did she leave an impression. Being a 90s baby means a lot of things; one being a slightly musical snob, so I’m not trying to hear yet another artist being forced on me, you know. There’s the music scene then, vs music now…Totally unmatched. I’ll bop my head and dance to a good beat, but artists wise, a few actually penetrate. It’s that deep. Destiny’s Child is where it all began for Queen B, and my real engagement with R&B albums-from a female group, yes. Mrs Carter is thee best live performer today. It was nice to go back in the archives and watch some of her performances as if I needed reminding! She is from that beloved era after all…;) #Beychella #Coachella the rest is Formation.