Swag Snap of the Week: Verdine White

Afua can mark an item off of her bucket list after meeting Verdine White,

bassist and co-founding member of the legendary band Earth, Wind and

Fire, following the band’s phenomenal performance Sunday night at

Stifel Theatre.

RIP Quinton Jackson. Man, I really don’t have the words to express how much I hate kicking off Partyline with an in memoriam. And to make matters worse, it always seems like I’m saying goodbye to folks who are so young, impactful and with so much to give that are gone too soon. Such is the case with Quinton Jackson of BPLR clothing. Q’s sudden passing Wednesday night still has me stunned. He was always everywhere with the biggest smile on his face and repped his beloved Phi Beta Sigma and BPLR to the fullest. His passion for his family, community and educating our youth should be a model for everyone to follow. 

Prayers up for Tony J. I wish I could just get on with my regularly scheduled programming, but I have to send out love and prayers to former St. Louis radio personality Tony J. For the sake of his privacy, I won’t go into specifics except to say that he is battling a health crisis that will require prayer warriors – and financial support for mounting medical costs. Tony J. is one of a kind with his “Trafffficccckkkkk” report and “bia bia check” during the Q 95.5 days. And he always went above and beyond in supporting the community with his Traffic Music Awards. There will be a fundraiser for him on Tuesday, July 30 at the LaRose Room (2723 Dr. Martin Luther King Drive) from 7 – 11 p.m. Stop through and show your support if you can. Tony J. is a class act –eager to reach out and lend a hand to rising radio personalities. What I love most about him is that he shows love to everybody, regardless of whether they were at competing stations or competing events or whatever. Let’s show him some love -and show him that his hilarity during his time on air and his continued support for the St. Louis music and entertainment scene is still appreciated. 

Another win for Earth, Wind and Fire. Listen, I know it seems like Earth, Wind and Fire is in town all the time. I don’t care if it’s EWF overload for some of y’all that I continue to report on it. I promise, with the type of show that they put on, they could come through every week and it would be in Partyline each time. You can think I’m playing if you want to! Anyway, I was a wreck when Philip Bailey took the stage Sunday at Stifel Theatre and looked under the weather. I was like please Lord don’t let him serve me Frankie Beverly scratchy vocals because of whatever ailment he is suffering through. I don’t know why I bothered worrying. Now he wasn’t prime, pristine Philip. But he gave me every high note I needed to let me know that he is a soldier! The entire band and the whole concert was life. Verdine was whipping that hair and slapping that bass for life in that bedazzled bellbottom get up. He is so extra – and everything to me. The thing that I love most about the shows, which probably has EWF founder Maurice White smiling from heaven, is the diversity that happens in the audience every time they come to our town – or anywhere else. It shows that music is not only an equalizer, but a unifier! 

BPV bursting at the seams for Bone. I have been going to Ballpark Village for as its been around – and I must say that Sunday night’s Bone Thugs-n-Harmony show was one of the most packed that I have ever seen. I was handling some business downtown just before 5 p.m. and folks were already lined up, looking like they had been there for a while. Shout to Phil Assets, 100.3 The Beat and whoever else was involved in bring that show, because they snagged a big win! I’m not saying I’m surprised Bone pulled a crowd, but this crowd was something else. And the crazy thing is that it was a truly blended crowd as far as the ethnic makeup. And it was so packed that the A/C couldn’t handle it. I was as hot as when I went to Frizz Fest, which I’ll get to in a minute. The crowd was so into the show that they sang along to every single word – I did not realize until the show they did at the Pageant that Bone had such a strong general population following, but this show set that fact in stone. Becky, Bruce and Chad were singing along to “1st of Tha Month” like they could really relate to getting government assistance. Perhaps they could. At any rate, it was a great show once it finally got started. As usual, Bone reminded the folks that they have collabed with the biggest names in hip-hop over their 25-plus years in the game. Was anybody else a nervous wreck that Krayzie Bone was going to tumble off of that stage during his little dance sequence finale? 

Hot fun at Frizz Fest. Listen, if you weren’t team natural when you stepped up in 3rd Annual Frizz Fest Saturday afternoon in Tower Grove Park, you were when you left! That heat and humidity had me trying to create a blueprint for a backpack A/C unit. But the heat advisory didn’t deter the folks from coming out to celebrate their kinks, coils, curls, twists, locks and fros. I was shocked by how packed it was. And the vendors had something for all types of natural beauties – from hair, makeup, jewelry, fashion and accessories. It was a beautiful thing – and seems to be getting bigger every year. Shout out to Miss Frizzy and all the folks who made it happen. 

AfroSexyHot. Speaking of natural hair and heat, the air was out at Sophie’s for the latest installment of James Biko’s AfroSexyCool – so I technically can’t call it by its true name. But the heat didn’t stop that party. Honey, the folks said, “I can’t worry about getting any pit stains because of this here groove!” It was a piping hot house party on the second floor of the .Zack building Saturday night. They were dancing and carrying on like they were oblivious to us being in a lowkey sauna, and I am not the least bit mad. What else could you do, considering Biko’s skills on the wheels of steel? 

Showcasing the creatives at AMP. Shout out to Seals Brock for once again bringing us Art, Mimosas and Pancakes (better known as AMP) with a grouping of fresh young artists –  many of whom I hadn’t seen before. I did run into Alvin J. Lewis and Sean Alexander, who I meet back when ARTC was presenting their Frist Friday sets. Most of First Friday crew has been laying low since they phased out their event – which made it all the more impressive to see Brock and his team representing for the STL creatives.

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