Swag Snap of the Week: Gary Clark Jr.

Maurice Falls managed to grab a selfie with blues rock star Gary Clark Jr. just ahead of his performance at the Stanley Cup Final Game 3 pregame block party on Market near City Hall Monday night.

No Jaheim. No Problem. Okay, maybe there was a problem – because folks got all worked up to see him, even though he hasn’t shown up the past three times he was scheduled to come here. And Jaheim stopped exactly short of saying he wasn’t coming to the Spring Music Festival either, but the folks believed that he would manifest anyway. If I could have the type of faith in my spiritual life that y’all did in Jaheim this past week – I would be the next religious guru. I honestly believe that him not showing was for the best – because there would have been some sort of drama. Either he would have shown up hours late – or looked and sounded a whole hot mess – or both. But in his absence, the only negative notes I have to report came from Donnell Jones’vocal cords – and that Avant was giving the folks working behind the scenes the blues by not getting off the stage like he was supposed to. I enjoyed myself once. DJ Kut was killing it on the tables and Damon Williams had me cackling both during his opening and in between acts. When he got to talking about the girls with those store bought curves, he said they are out here asking the doctor to take a piece of their shoulder blade and shape a booty out of it – and then them walking around looking like raptors. I almost went to heaven. Donnell didn’t sound as bad as that time he was at that Valentine’s Day concert at the Ritz – but he was close. I was disappointed because he put on a good little show at Ballpark Village last year. Oh well. Maybe he was sick again. Speaking of sick, Avant can’t win for losing with y’all. He was all sorts of fluffy names when he was representing for team chunk his last couple of visits to town. And now that he got that body snatched, y’all were quietly acting like he looked like he only had six months to live. Listen, he looked fine to me. The weight loss was drastic, but he’s the same size as he was when he first came out. He sounded the same too. And it ain’t too many that can hold their own against KeKe Wyatt, but that background singer he had was singing those notes. Monica came out in a white Carmen Miranda (yes, the Chiquita banana lady) blouse, some sequined pants and orthopedic shoes. She essentially gave us not only the songs, but the fashion and  footwear of her “Miss Thang” days. Come to find out she had surgery. However, that doesn’t excuse the pants or the blouse. I’ll give her a pass on the feet though, since she sounded good and looked great. So did Tank. I knew he was nasty, but those songs from “Savage” are low-key audio pornography. If it were anybody else, I would be offended. But he’s still so fine, that I didn’t mind it at all. He had a good mix of slow jams and dance tracks – though I would have loved to hear more of his throwbacks.

It’s Prime (55) Time. After months of teasing Prime 55 – the sexy new restaurant owned and operated by African Americans (namely Tony “T-Luv” Davis and Orlando Watson with executive chef Tyler Wayne) – is open for business. They are a week in, and it has been bustling since day one. And if you taste the food, you will understand why. If I’m, not careful, those lobster fries are gonna make it so that I’m up in Salute wearing a Missy Elliott “I Can’t Stand The Rain” Hefty bag to hide my rolls. They are perfectly seasoned, crispy fries with a cheesy Cajun lobster sauce that will make sure that the idea of cheese fries won’t ever be the same for anyone who orders the appetizer. They have healthy options – like the cauliflower steak and the pear salad. But I had to taste what I felt like the people would want to know about. So, I’ll be walking Koeneman Park all week to make up for the epic cheat meal that I indulged in at Prime 55 – including the namesake steak. Just thinking about it made me lose the ability to formulate the words to express how delicious it was. And I’ve never had a plus-sized cheesy tater tot as a side for my steak before, but it won’t be the last. I’ve talked about the food, because I am a foodie, but the vibe was everything as well. Ooh, that food was so good! I’m sorry. I just flashed back. Be sure to hit them up for lunch or dinner. You won’t be sorry.

Happy b-days are in order! One of my favorite folks and one of my favorite DJs celebrated their b-days this weekend with special events that nothing but death could keep me from. First off, Linda Robinson had her birthday happy hour at the Marquee on Friday. Because she is ALWAYS giving back, as usual she chose to use her party for a purpose. This year she asked folks to donate to the Rickey Whittington Foundation. How can anyone not love Linda. Happy birthday girl. Did I tell you how much I am loving the silver hair on you? Okay, on with the parties. Sunday afternoon, Derrty DJ AJ had the Signature Club on lock with a wonderful laid back vibe of a white party. I saw some of my faves, including some folks I hadn’t seen in a minute. It was quite the cute set.

Soul under the stars. As I promised I would last year, I made my way back to Heman Park for their summer outdoor Starlight Concert Series – which goes down at 6:30 p.m. Monday nights in June, July and August. This week, it was my girl Tiffany Elle. She has had my attention since slaying a Lauryn Hill tribute a few years back. I had actually decided to turn around because I had another engagement, but when she started in with Jade’s “Don’t Walk Away,” how could I not oblige? She killed that cover. I felt a special kind of way about it because I hadn’t heard that song performed live – like ever. And since I’m talking about things that I’ve never heard, can we discuss for a second why Phil has been sitting behind the piano and keeping that voice to himself all these years? I could tell he was a bit nervous, but he had no reason to be, because he was giving us all sorts of life singing Daniel Caesar’s verse as Tiffany served a version of H.E.R.’s “Best Part.” I’m so glad I stuck around!

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