Swag Snap of the Week: Cedric The Entertainer & Mike Epps

Farewell to Kut and all the now former HotFoxy folks. I must say that I was utterly shocked when I learned Tuesday night that DJ Kut, Meghan O, Mz Sinita, Miss Pooh would no longer be on air at Urban One St. Louis stations Hot 104.1 FM and 95.5 FM The Lou. Time has flown by this last nine years he has been on the air – and he is a sure thing when it comes to moving the crowd as a DJ. The Rona has shaken every single industry. I guess I shouldn’t be surprised that it wasn’t any different in the radio game. I’ll miss him for now, but I’m certain that I won’t have to miss him for long. I’m also hoping for the best for Sinita, Meghan, Miss Pooh too. They are three of the coolest, most down to earth ladies in the game. I’m keeping y’all in my prayers and claiming that bigger and better things are in store for you all.

Battle of the hits. Every time I think I’m going to get bored with social media, somebody pops up with something to tide me all the way over. This week it was the battle of the hits as songwriters and producers squared off with their biggest hits in an Instagram faceoff. Everyone was talking about the Lil Jon vs. T-Pain, which was much more entertaining than I expected, but not my favorite. Folks seemed really surprised that Scott Storch wiped the floor with Mannie Fresh. How could y’all not see that coming? Yes, Mannie Fresh has “Back That Thang Up,” which has him in the hall of fame amongst pioneering twerkers and all of us looking for Cash Money to take over the 99 and the 2000s. But Scott Storch has songwriting/producing receipts so long that they have their own separate Wikipedia page. I’m so serious. Beyoncé, The Roots, P!nk, Christina Aguilera, Chris Brown, Nelly, Lil Kim…you know what, I would need a whole separate Partyline to really hip y’all so I will leave it alone except to say Storch’s win was warranted. I’m still sad that I couldn’t put my polka dot rayon skort set and kitten heels on in front of the computer and watch Mr. New Jack Swing Teddy Riley and Babyface square off.  Riley said that the reason the IG battle was delayed was because ‘Face was feeling a bit under the weather and they want to “make sure the battle is done right.” I will be waiting. Surprisingly favorite of the IG Live battles belonged to Ne-Yo and Johnta Austin. I know some of you may not have heard of Johnta, but the stone-cold cutie is responsible for some R&B fire from the 90s and 2000s. The sound on this battle made me feel like they recorded it via a flip phone speaker in the back of an extremely turbulent low-budget airline, but they brought some hits to that thing, you hear me?! I was singing along for the whole 90 minutes – which made me realize that Ciara was low-key trying to kill us with her hook on Bow Wow’s “Like You. (which was Johnta’s track).” I was like, “If I hold my breath through this whole thing after living a stint of a somewhat sedentary lifestyle due to social distancing, I will suffocate myself.”

STL in on the ‘Don’t Rush Challenge’ craze. So, the past week or so, the latest global social media craze is the “Don’t Rush” challenge. Here’s how it works. It’s kind of like an instant extreme makeover meets virtual tag. The song by Young T and Bugsey – which has finally given British hip-hop some play in the U.S. – starts off with whoever is featured in the clips that are edited together to appear as one video looking a mess. They wave something in front of the camera – handkerchief, makeup brush, wine glass or whatever – and voila, they are snatched for dear life. So far, I saw three groups of St. Louis folks make their own videos. And leave it to us to make the “Don’t Rush” Challenge video and not use the song. Well one of them did. But the other two featured Nelly’s “Country Grammar” and Chingy’s “Right Thurr.” I got life from all three. But I must say that one group should have told some of the participants to make sure their phones have the capacity for hi-res video. Now if your regular phone is busted and you are in limbo with your first cell phone ever due to social distancing, I will apologize in advance. But seriously, everybody was cute. Keep it up!

Def Comedy conversations for ‘The Rona’ relief fund. Before I get into it, let me first give a shout out to St. Louis’ own Cedric The Entertainer for stepping up and giving back to aid in the effort to fight The Rona. He didn’t have to spend his Sunday night with us to use the Def Comedy Jam to raise funds, but he did. Now I would be lying if I didn’t say I was expecting a least a few little jokes from his comedy call-ins over the course of the night. I felt like I was just eavesdropping on some phone calls of folks who don’t know how to hang up from each. I’m not dry hating, I just am stating my expectations. Now I got some cackles from Cedric, and Earthquake. But I was expecting to be kicking and screaming with laughter so hard that my neighbors could hear my kee-kee tantrum all the way through their social distancing oppositional defiance. I wish there had been a tad more structure and that some of the comedians, a few known to bring the house down with their funny, had at least flung in some of their old faithful material. There I said it. It doesn’t make me any less grateful, or proud that our boy Ceddy was behind such a worthy cause.

Round two of Badu’s Quarantine concert. I paid my little two dollars to check out the second installment of Low Down Loretta Brown a.k.a. Erykah Badu’s World Apocalypse Quarantine Concert Series. Now I got my money’s worth, and I loved the concept, but I didn’t get as much life from it as the first go-round. Last time we picked the songs. This time she kept things to her “New Amerykah Part Two” album as she commemorated its 10th anniversary – and had the genius idea of having different rooms dedicated to different musical styles. They included the experimental room, the jazz-ish room and the funk room. I felt like I was in the Twilight Zone every time they went to that experimental, but I wish she would have expanded the catalog so we could see how ingeniously she chopped and screwed songs we know. And the transition periods were the pits. We were subjected to Dollar Tree magic tricks from her brother-in-law and next-door neighbor – who both had the energy of extras from “The Drew Carey Show.” I’m still excited to see what she does for the third installment, which she hasn’t set a date for yet.

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