Fantasia and DJ Khaled tell Fans How They’re Keeping Their Game Strong and Fame from Going Wrong

The list is in (or out)! As word on the winners are announced, some folks are glad to come out on top. Well it depends on whether you’re looking at the election results or the MTV EMA’s. Candidates in political races usually give their acceptance speeches while award winners get to hold their prized statue.

In the case of the upcoming America Music Awards (AMAs), the list of nominees is out. Word is that Lizzo will be performing on the big stage. She’s been nominated in the Best New Artist category. Also expected to make a showing is Selena Gomez. She’s back in the game with a new attitude and market appeal.

Hot on the charts are two artists among our hit list of music biz players. Fantasia and DJ Khaled give us their take on how they stay relevant. Fantasia who’s best known from her days on American Idol, has released new music and settled into having a family life outside of the glitz and glamour of showbiz.

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For DJ Khaled, it’s always been about sharing ‘major keys’ to his brand identity. He started spinning records for the ‘Miami Vice’ scene and now he’s a top-rated music producer. In recent interviews and posts on social media, they tell fans how they’re keeping their game strong and fame from going wrong.

Her new album recently jumped to the #1 spot on the Billboard R&B list with a concert tour in the rollout. His latest collabs feature artists who have their own standing in the game but who’re ready to produce crossover hits for the charts and movie soundtracks. They keep stirring-up their skills with:

  1. Passion

Think about how television is a way to tell-a-vision. The shows we watch go from vision to script to passion. That may be one way how Fantasia and DJ Khaled keep fans wanting more. Sometimes their music is like soul-vision as they put vision to lyrics and music on a track with a stirring in rhythm & soul.

  1. Path

For them, the paths taken have been different, but the results have been similar. Hot music, awards lists, excited fans. It’s more than just going down some money-making path. It’s also about creating a lit-path. They’re likely to share some life-notes from their journey to bring more light to the passion within.

  1. Purpose

When you see Fantasia on stage, she’s like a next-gen Patti Labelle. When you checkout the music from DJ Khaled he’s like a next-gen Quincy Jones. Similar passions to how they affect the game. But how they affect everyday life itself is more about living with a higher purpose beyond themselves.

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  1. Peace

There are some artists who seem to make news for all the crazy reasons (not calling any names). Maybe they’re still trying to find their peace. For Fantasia and DJ Khaled there’s lots of blessings to go around coming out of their sense of peace. It keeps them in a state of rest when things bring stress.

The AMAs will air on TV during the weekend before Thanksgiving. Lots of artists will be in the building hoping to rub elbows and up their cred. Fantasia and DJ Khaled may have special seats up front. But even if they don’t their passion for music will keep them on a path where they’re thriving and winning.

Tip: The path taken for more exciting times is filled with passion, purpose and peace by how you tell-a-vision your dreams and stir-up your skills.

Talkback: If you’ve seen the nominees for AMA Best New Artist, who’s your pick?

Tracks: Mary J Blige ft. Nas – Thriving – https://youtu.be/98YJEr9NaXc

Jay Rock – Win – https://youtu.be/ZPFnwgsTOWM

Beyoncé and Kirk Franklin: Two Performers on Opposite Ends of the Game who Know Something About Turning-up the Heat on their Dreams

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It’s been only a few days since Easter and the temperature is already turnt-up. Not so much the air outside but the buzz around town and on social media after Beyoncé pulled another surprise album drop. This time it’s a ‘live’ recording from her recent Coachella Festival concert set, with a remix on a classic.

Her version of the old Frankie Beverly & Maze track ‘Before I let go’ is setting records and exciting fans. She even caused another ‘breaking of the Internet’ with dance challenge videos to the track. Then as if to follow that with even more madness, her Lemonade album is now streaming worldwide on all platforms.

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That’s the story from the R&B/Pop side of the game. And then there’s Kirk Franklin who’s going from the studio to the road with his 13th album along with a U.S. concert tour. He’s already made waves and set records as a gospel artist. He’s even got Amazon’s ‘Alexa’ on the case to help bump his streams.

Beyoncé and Franklin are two performers on opposite ends of the game who know something about turning-up the heat on their dreams. Since Bey had to skip her previous Coachella performance the year before due to the ‘baby bump’ many were looking forward to her bringing a world-class stage show.

She’s the first black female artist to headline the event. Franklin’s the first gospel artist to have a music video on MTV. Their journeys have had bumps in the road where they reinvented themselves a time or two. Their performance side is lit, their biz side is legit, having taken their dreams through the phases of:

  1. Formation

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One takeway from the Homecoming show on Netflix is that Bey handles the details from the creative to the expressive sides of her performances. As an artist, she’s thinking about her craft in the band as much as she’s thinking about herself as a brand in taking her dream from conception to mass distribution.

  1. Resolution

There’re probably three key times in the year when people use the calendar to help propel their dreams or other social agenda. Whether it’s because the ‘new-year rush’ is over or the career thrill is gone, people will use Spring time or early Fall to make a kind of dream resolution for taking things up a notch.

  1. Correction

Most dreams go though an ‘up and up’ phase in building clout. Then something happens that becomes a setback or shift in strategy. Beyoncé and Franklin have had moments where the business caused them to make adjustments or life caused their dreams to make slight course corrections as planes do on autopilot.

  1. Appreciation

It took three years for Beyoncé’s decision on releasing the Lemonade album to all streaming platforms. This will give fans a greater appreciation for her work. Not as if the Beyhive wasn’t already on board with her music archive. But fan appreciation is sort of the best ‘tell’ of the impact of someone’s dream work.

Sometimes a dream takes a while to come into formation or full view. Other times it happens right before our eyes as we’ve seen with these two artists. To fans, Bey is like an angel and they show her major appreciation. While Franklin wants his dream to be like a gospel soldier for the ‘MHG – Most High God.’

Tip: Sometimes a dream takes a while to come into formation or full view. But when it takes off it goes from conception to fan appreciation.

Talkback: What’s the difference between a fan club and the Beyhive?

Tracks: Shaggy ft Rayvon – Angel – https://youtu.be/XWJrPzAUzAs

Destiny’s Child  – Soldier – https://youtu.be/qFJ3VKnwmJw

What’s it Like Being Issa Rae & Jay Ellis on ‘Reclaiming Your Game’ or Your Dreams in Business and the Real World?

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The new season of HBOs Insecure is getting attention for how it flipped the script. With a relationship breakup something many can relate to, the characters played by Issa Rae and Jay Ellis are trying to ‘kick-it’ in new ways. The story being told is like a test case for ‘reclaiming your game’ in the dating world.

In relationships there’re times it takes looking at bloodline versus fault-line to see where the problems rest. Some might point to things having to do with repeating errors from the past or issues that sit under the surface. Moving things to the next level can mean turning an insecure flow into a new glow.

The same is true with the ‘ins and outs’ of the daily grind. There’s an inner flow of hope that prevents us from giving up, whether in finding a relationship or in life dreams. A fresh sense of self-awareness leads to more self-acceptance. Then after a while the heavens finds a way to give a ‘wink and nod’ of approval.

This is how it might play out months after a blind-date. It’s kinda what happened for me after a business meeting. There I was sitting among a group of journalists as they discussed a few civic projects. Their day’s work had them writing lead news stories while their life’s work was about impacting life stories.

A few days later, a call from a journalist was like a ‘wink and nod’ from the heavens. Her assignment was writing a local story on ‘reclaiming your game’ in the professional world. That became a front-page feature in the Life section of the paper the day after Christmas. That’s how a flow of hope kept me in the game.

These kinds of hope-filled moments can led to a flow of hustle in the game. In every field of dreams there’s a time for hope and a time for hustle. Sometimes the hope comes before the hustle and sometimes the hustle comes before the hope. You can’t hate the hustle just because you’ve got no game.

It’s been said do what you love and the money will follow. Another way to look at that might be ‘do what you love and the hustle will follow’ once you know your game. Whether in relationships or life dreams the hustle is like a metaphor for the things that begin to flow your way as you nurture your love in the game.

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That might be where things are with fans of Insecure as the main characters show a thing or two on ‘reclaiming your game’ in the real world. Somewhere along the lines it boils down to a flow of heart and humor. That’s what you get from stories of ‘Black Love’ where long-term romance is more than just about finance.

When I first crossed paths with the woman who’s now my wife, it was a flow of feelings that made me think there could be something here. Over time the relationship became what would amount to a flow of hope, hustle, heart and humor. She’d bring one or two from her end and me doing the same on my end.

Here we are 25 years later with two daughters ages 20 and 17 who we try to give the best life has to offer. There’re things they’ll deal with tied to bloodline and to fault-line. We want them to know going from girls to women or college major to life dreams means turning any insecure flow into their primetime glow.

Tip: Your primetime glow in relationship or life dreams is a matter of letting the flow of hope, hustle, heart and humor shine through from the good old days all the way to your glory days.

Talkback: How have you improved a relationship or stretched your dreams by going from an insecure flow to a primetime glow?

Tracks: Craig David ft Sigala – Ain’t Giving Up – https://youtu.be/FC9fc12YYC4

Logic ft Alessia Cara & Khalid – 800-273-8255 – https://youtu.be/BLe1dddgZrg

@TaylorSwift Turns ‘1989’ into a Celebration of Her Career And Pop Music Reinvention – #WUWECAST

This production of “Wise-up Wednesdays” Blogcast by Douette ‘Doc’ Cunningham is a presentation in “social media entertainment from the groove-track of life!” #WUWECAST

LOL Tube – Got Funny?


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Theme:–The Year of ‘Uppertunity’ – Get Lifted!”
With Higher Hopes, Bolder Dreams and Greater Teams (Old-School Flava)

The summer season’s in full swing. For some this means more sun and surf. For others it’s about concerts and cookouts. If there’s a ‘song of the summer’ stuck in your head, Taylor Swift understands. She’s turned her ‘1989’ album into a world-tour celebration of her pop music career reinvention.

As if to keep the party going, Swift has teamed-up with Keds footwear for a ‘Ladies First’ global rebrand campaign. Keds president Chris Lindner said it’s “A celebration of amazing women like Taylor Swift who are blazing new trails every day. From CEOing to BFFing, these ladies are doing it all.”

For Swift it’s just another example of what it takes to reinvent yourself. She started out her career as a country music artist. But she made the right moves to build her chops and rebrand her stuff in pop music. She might say it has been a journey of next step, then next chapter and arriving at the next level.

Her story has been one of learning from her mistakes. She spent a lot of time listening to music from before her time. That was a turning point for her next step in the creative writing process. Plus, when things went sour in her relationships she would just ‘shake it off’ and turn the page to her next chapter.

Swift says her music has been about “coming of age, maybe even coming undone.” Her reinvention has been about coming into her own. So here’s what execs’ quotes and celebs’ stories like Swift say about being career standouts or earning bonus handouts: Be realistic, pursue excellence, embrace greatness!

Groove-Track: The Heavy – ‘How You Like Me Now’

Theme:–The Year of ‘Uppertunity’ – Get Lifted!”
With Higher Hopes, Bolder Dreams and Greater Teams (New-School Flava)

Summer season in full swing. For some surf and sun is their thing. With others it’s concerts and cookouts. Or watching the race car blowouts. If there’s a ‘song of summer’ in your head. Taylor Swift understands, enough said. Turned her ‘1989’ album into a celebration. Of world tour and pop music career reinvention.

As if to keep the party going. With lots more show-gigs flowing. She teams-up with Keds footwear. On ‘Ladies First’ rebrand affair. Company president thinks it’s the right time. Saying “amazing women like Swift blazing new trails” in their prime. “From CEOing to BFFing” in the mall. These ladies are doing it all.

For Swift it’s another example. Of a ‘reinvent yourself’ biz sample. Started out her career as a country singer. Then made the move to pop music winner. As artist she makes a song catchy. As country girl she keeps it on the happy. A journey going from next step to next chapter. With more clout in the game ever after.

Her story’s one of continuous learning. As well as a pay-grade of higher earning. Spent lots of time with music of the past. Became a turning point for songs that will last. A next step in the creative process of writing. Even if personal relationships weren’t biting. She’d just ‘shake it off’ for her next chapter turning.

Swift says it’s about coming of age. And coming undone without the rage. Reinvention’s been about coming into her own. And carrying herself in ways she’s grown. So here’s to execs and celebs stories on career standouts. Be realistic, pursue excellence and embrace greatness for bonus handouts.

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Tip: A good rule-of-thumb from Career Standouts: Be realistic, pursue excellence, embrace greatness!
Talkback: Who’s got a point in the twitter feud between Taylor Swift and Nicki Minaj about the VMAs?
Groove-Tracks: Taylor Swift – ‘Shake it Off’

Mark Ronson ft Bruno Mars  – ‘Uptown Funk’

This production of “Wise-up Wednesdays” Blogcast by Douette ‘Doc’ Cunningham is a presentation in “social media entertainment from the groove-track of life!” #WUWECAST