Posts Tagged ‘Amerie’

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Top 20 albums of 2009.

December 25, 2009

Hello everyone, and Merry Christmas!  I have compiled (and it was startlingly easy) my top 20 albums of 2009 (if you know me, you know it’ll be an R&B female-dominated affair as usual!).  Unlike last year, when I listed 10 and did mini reviews, this time I’ve got 20 (since my shortlist came to 20 albums, I thought it would just be easier to rank 11-20, than pick out some for Honourable Mentions).  No mini-reviews, or I would be here forever, and I think my blog posts are long enough without breaking the 5000 word barrier!  So I’ve just put the best and worst tracks from each album with the album cover, and hopefully you’ll be intrigued to download my favourite songs of 2009.  And while you’re at it, you can download my own album, Quiet Storm, here too! So without further ado…

20. Utada HikaruThis Is The One (read my full review here!)

Highlights = Come Back To Me, Apple And Cinnamon, This One (Crying Like A Child), On And On

Skip = Automatic Part II, Poppin’

19. Electrik RedHow To Be A Lady Volume 1

Highlights = Muah, P Is For Power, W.F.Y., Drink In My Cup, Kill Bill

Skip = So Good, Friend Lover, On Point

18. Lady GaGaThe Fame Monster

Highlights = Bad Romance, Alejandro, Monster, Teeth

Skip = Speechless, So Happy I Could Die

17. Joss StoneColour Me Free!

Highlights = Could Have Been You, Stalemate, Girlfriend On Demand

Skip = Incredible, Parallel Lines, Governmentalist

16. Cheryl Cole3 Words

Highlights = 3 Words, Parachute, Heaven, Fight For This Love, Boy Like You

Skip = everything else!

15. Chrisette MicheleEpiphany

Highlights = Blame It On Me, Epiphany (I’m Leaving), Notebook, On My Own

Skip = What You Do, Another One, Mr. Right

14. Nicki Minaj – Beam Me Up Scotty

Highlights = I Get Crazy, Kill Da DJ, Mind On My Money, Keys Under Palm Trees, Beam Me Up Scotty

Skip = Best I Ever Had, Easy

13. MýaBeauty & The Streets Vol. 1

Highlights = About My B.I., Show Me Something, Boss, Club Go Crazy, Work It Out, Black Out

Skip = Go Hard Or Go Home, The Only One, Full Service

12. Robin ThickeSex Therapy

Highlights = Sex Therapy, Meiplé, Shakin’ It For Daddy, Elevatas, Make U Love Me

Skip = Million Dolla Baby, I Got U, Mona Lisa

11. Alicia KeysThe Element Of Freedom (read my full review here!)

Highlights = Doesn’t Mean Anything, Try Sleeping With A Broken Heart, Love Is My Disease, Distance And Time, Empire State Of Mind (Part II)

Skip = Love Is Blind, Wait Til You See My Smile, Like The Sea, This Bed

10. The-DreamLove vs Money

Highlights = My Love, Take U Home 2 My Mama, Fancy, Right Side Of My Brain

Skip = Walkin’ On The Moon, Sweat It Out, Love vs Money, Let Me See The Booty

9. Keri HilsonIn A Perfect World…

Highlights = Turnin’ Me On, Get Your Money Up, Knock You Down, Make Love, Energy, Where Did He Go

Skip = Intuition, Slow Dance, How Does it Feel

8. Black Eyed Peas The E.N.D.

Highlights = Boom Boom Pow, Rock That Body, Imma Be, Electric City, Mare

Skip = Alive, Missing You, Rockin To The Beat

7. ShakiraShe Wolf (read my full review here!)

Highlights = Did It Again, Why Wait, Men In This Town, Mon Amour

Skip = Gypsy, Spy

6. Trey SongzReady

Highlights = I Invented Sex, I Need A Girl, LOL :-), Black Roses, Yo Side Of The Bed

Skip = Jupiter Love, Does He Do It, Be Where You Are

5. AmerieIn Love & War

Highlights = Heard ‘Em All, Higher, Swag Back, Different People, Dear John

Skip = Tell Me You Love Me, Red Eye, Pretty Brown

4. LeToyaLady Love (read my full review here!)

Highlights = She Ain’t Got…, Not Anymore, Good To Me, Regret, I Need A U, Don’t Need You

Skip = Take Away Love, After Party, Tears

3. CiaraFantasy Ride (read my full review here!)

Highlights = High Price, Like A Surgeon, Never Ever, Work, Keep Dancin’ On Me, I Don’t Remember

Skip = Ciara To The Stage, Love Sex Magic, Lover’s Thing

2. RihannaRated R (read my full review here!)

Highlights = Hard, Russian Roulette (check out my single review here!), Fire Bomb, Rude Boy, G4L, The Last Song

Skip = Rockstar 101

1. Mariah CareyMemoirs Of An Imperfect Angel (read my full review here!)

Highlights = H.A.T.E.U., Ribbon, Angels Cry, I Want To Know What Love Is, Candy Bling

Skip = It’s A Wrap

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tenacity.

July 2, 2009

So I’m sitting here outside on the patio, it’s 9pm and I don’t really know what I have to write about, for possibly the first time I started this blog only a couple of days ago!  I’ve got Amerie on my ipod, my parents are speaking loudly (read: arguing) in the living room and I need a quick escape.  So here I am.

I suppose today the only recurring theme that’s come up is tenacity.  Watching both Wimbledon women’s semi finals between the Williams sisters and their Russian counterparts was an exercise in tenacity.  I’ll start with the second match first:  Venus Williams v. Dinara Safina was a masterclass in tennis where Venus, clearly the best women’s tennis player around at the moment, barely broke a sweat while outplaying and outclassing her opponent, puzzlingly the current world number one both upon entering and leaving the semi-final.  I suppose that’s why labels aren’t always as important, and statistics don’t always tell the whole story; Safina, the world #1, was by far the weakest player in today’s semi finals.

The other match was far more interesting : Serena Williams v. Elena Dementieva.  The longest Wimbledon women’s semi final for 15 years, Dementieva threatened to win the match multiple times, only to fail to capitalise upon the match points every time.  After getting very irate at the television and at the biased commentators who could barely remove their tongues from Serena’s backside, I said “Blonde (Dementieva = too many syllables) deserves to have won already; if she hasn’t won by now, she isn’t gonna do it.”  And I was proved right, though Serena Williams came from behind so many times and was lucky not to have been dismissed in the second set, let alone the third.  But at the end of the day Serena had the belief in herself (both tennis players were extremely skilled so I’m not going to say who was “better”), while Dementieva ultimately let her nerves get to her and prevent her time and again from capitalising upon the breaks she had made for herself.  Serena was definitely lucky to have gotten through to the final (and she certainly does not deserve to beat her sister, unless something drastically changes), but she got through because of her tenacity.  Even when the going got really tough, she didn’t give up and kept playing and playing and pushing through to the victory.  She demonstrated more self-belief than her opponent and it brought her through.

About an hour later, my mother and I were having a conversation, I can’t remember how it started, but it got along to the notion of not giving up on oneself.  At first I told my mother that although I would never give up on myself, sometimes it is easy to feel like giving up on yourself, to stop believing that my new job will ever give me any hours during this recession, to believe that my uni course might fall through, to feel like my singing and my university degree and my weight loss and muscle buildup has all been for nothing.  I think that everybody feels weak at times, and I think that we are only human; weakness is an understandable feeling.  As much as I try to display an icy, strong and flawless public persona even around my friends and family, there are cracks that I know exist; and I try to accept them and patch them up one at a time as much as I can.

Once my mum got annoyed because she thought that I meant I wanted to give up on myself (which wasn’t my meaning at all), I explained that I wasn’t going to give up, but just that sometimes success isn’t as simple as how much effort you put in.  Other things happen around you, life sometimes leads you in another direction through its myriad events and coincidences.  You can only control your life to a certain degree; I believe that outside factors can make you stumble, divert your planned course and force you to take a moment out to regroup.  It doesn’t mean giving up, but it does mean that things don’t happen as easily as you expected, nor the way you expected them to. (Look at me: Oxford languages graduate, one year later I’m going back to university to do a Careers Guidance course that I’m not even sure that I will be able to afford…) My mum understood and agreed, and we then went on to discuss how my nan says that we shouldn’t buy nice / designer things, because the money could always be useful for something else more “necessary”.  My nan isn’t wrong, but me and my mother both agree that sometimes life is too short to be forever wanting something that you continue to deny yourself.  I’ve told my nan before that she is in a position financially to have near enough anything she wants, where there are thousands of people who dream of owning even one little slice of Gucci or Armani (or whatever your poison happens to be) and never get round to affording it.  And there’s also a difference between spending recklessly on luxuries without taking care of the bigger picture, and treating yourself to something that you’ve earned with your own blood, sweat and tears, that will make you happier and is within your grasp.  Sometimes I feel I have to justify why I have a designer watch, ring, necklace, tshirt, sunglasses, but I don’t have to justify anything; at the end of the day, I can afford those things which make me happy and indulge my fashionista persona, and I can still afford to pay my phone bill, my transport, my rent, my gym membership.  I’m not earning a lot of money, but I’m not living beyond my means.  And now that I have Prada sunglasses, I did it once and I won’t go back to aspiring to that. I won’t surrender that dream that I made reality.  I will only keep moving forward.  In a roundabout way, that is the definition of “tenacity” to me.