New Blog Coming Soon!

This site will be no more. I'm working on another blog titled "Raise It Up!" with a friend of mine.

It will be very similar to Brown Sugar when it comes to the underground artists and getting their names out there more. The only difference is that my friend and myself will be blogging about more popular music as well. This way, we'll have a larger audience that will stumble upon these underground artists while they are looking for what they know. This mix will be interesting, but this way I will still be able to blog about the music I love and hopefully the blog will have more visitors.

Hopefully this time I'll be able to balance school and blogging and everything else. College begins this fall, but with two of us posting on RIU, things shouldn't be slow.

Stay tuned!

Save VH1 Soul!

VH1 Soul, the only music channel on television that plays the greatest soul music, is on the verge of getting the axe. Every cable provider does not offer this channel, but those who have it and are fans of it cannot live without it.

If VH1 Soul was to be discontinued, what channel would soul-lover watch to get their fix? MTV Jams? MTV Hits? MTV? VH1? Fuse? Not a chance.

VH1 Soul has created many of their own original programs, i.e. the notable SoulStage. Jill Scott, Chrisette Michele, Erykah Badu, Wyclef Jean, and Raphael Saadiq have all been performers on the program, and without it, where else where we go to watch these artists' sets?

The fact is, people do not WANT to air this kind of music. Soul music isn't as popular as all of the other genres, so most channels have zero interest in airing it. If the artists who get their videos played on the channel were platinum-selling, multi-grammy winning artists, cancellation would not even be a thought. Good music? People can't take that. People don't need that. People don't want that.

But you know what, forget music with substance. Who needs to turn on their television and watch Sub-Soul and see underground soul artists (with great talent) do what they absolutely love to do? Who needs Soulphrodisiac where the best of the love songs are played? Who needs Soul School to watch the old soul and R&B videos from back in the day? Not I. Not VH1 Soul's fans either.

Let's get rid of VH1 Soul and keep MTV Jams! What a great idea, because everyone wants to see the latest videos from Waka Flocka and the like. Let's keep BET because, to put it simply, it is the best channel for black music. We get to see the most music of depth and substance on these channels, don't we? I don't care to see live sets from artists like Erykah Badu. I don't care to see my favorite R&B music videos from the 80's and 90's. Yes, getting rid of VH1 Soul is a fantastic idea.

However, if you disagree with me, you can sign THIS PETITION and follow @SaveVH1Soul on Twitter. They'll keep you updated with the entire situation. Share the links with a friend and tell your friend to share the links with a friend, and so on and so on.

Peace and love.

Have You Downloaded Brittany Bosco's Spectrum 2.0?

The EP hit the net September 1st at midnight(EST). Many Brittany Bosco fans and supporters downloaded it straight away and those who haven't even heard of her gave it a listen. Spectrum 2.0 is a re-release of her first Spectrum EP. This time around, she has included a few new songs. Her musical style is far from usual. However, I've seen her being compared to the likes of Janelle Monae, Kissey Asplund, and Erykah Badu. If you're new to Bosco, download this EP. There isn't any theft here, it's all free. Major props to ConcreteLoop for the Artist Spotlight post on her.

Don't Miss Fertile Ground In D.C.!

If you are a Fertile Ground and/or Natalie Stewart fan, don't miss your chance to see these artists live. On September 19th, these artists (along with Beny Blaq and Jason Reynolds) will be at The Arc Theater. Orchestra seating is $20 and box seating is $24.

Visit TSSS for more information. Mark your calenders, people.

SoulCulture Presents: Aaliyah Revisited.

Eight years ago today, a true angel was taken away from this word. Every year on this day, Aaliyah fans take their time out to honor her. Whether it's listening to her music, watching her videos, or getting together for her, we do what we can. She will never be forgotten.

SoulCulture has put together this EP which includes great artists singing some of Baby Girl's classics. These artists include Tawiah, Sy Smith, Jesse Boykins III, and more. Cover/Tracklisting + download link below.

1. If Your Girl Only Knew (Syberized) – produced & performed by Sy Smith (Recorded & Engineered by: Grant Nicholas at Rumbo Studio C, Winnetka, CA)

2. Are You That Somebody – performed by Tawiah, produced by Jodi Milliner

3. I Care 4 U – produced & performed by Jesse Boykins III

4. It’s Whatever – produced by Black Einstein ft. Baby Sol

5. A Million Preludes – performed by Marsha Ambrosius

6. One In A Million – performed by Jonas

7. Rock The Boat – performed by Vula, produced by Jodi Milliner

8. ESP (A 4 Page Suite) – produced by AFTA-1 ft. Nikko Gray


Thanks to SoulCulture.

Video: Sy Smith- B-Side Love Affair.

Below is the official video for Sy Smith's "B-Side Love Affair" from her album Conflict. Very nice video for one of my personal favorites on the album.

Make sure you're following Sy on Twitter. The woman is amazing. A 10 in my book.

Randomness: What Makes You A Good Artist?

Many people, including myself, are always talking about good music and good artists. But what does that mean, exactly? In my opinion, it doesn't mean that there are good artists and bad artists. There are many things that make you a "good" artist. With that being said, I made a list of 10 things that I think make you a good artist. (with a couple of things added by my boy Vince)

Top ten things that make you a GOOD artist:

1. "Money Don't Mean a Thing."
A true artist makes music for the love. They're not worried about how much money they're going to make or how many album sales they get. They make music because they love it and because there are people out there that love it.

2. Staying True to Yourself.
You don't have to sell out if you want to be a good artist. What is selling out you ask? Conforming, basically. Hopping on a track with Drake being drowned out in auto-tune. That's what it is. If you make music the way you want to, you will get true fans. No shade towards Mary J. Blige by the way. Just do you.

3. Performing Your Tail Off.
This is very broad. If you love the music, you'd love to perform. Everytime you perform, you'll give it your all. It doesn't have to be at a major venue, it can just be at a small show. At either location, you perform with all of your might. And when it comes to performing, most artists' live performances are better and different each time. I don't know what it is...but an artist who can put on one heck of a show blow my mind.

4. Good Attitude.
Nobody likes a stuck-up artist or a hater. If you can acknowledge another artist's talent and greatness, you're amazing. The artists I follow on twitter are constantly showing love to eachother which makes me love them even more. You're all in this business together, no need for hate.

5. Meaningful Lyrics.
No one wants to hear anything about you "[insert expletive here] every girl in the world." We want something we can relate to. (And if you can relate to those lyrics...please click the "X" at the top right of your browser. Thank you.)

6. Don't Let The Industry Take You Over.
I'm not an artist, but from what I have seen and heard, the business is very stressful. Don't let them see you sweat, though. I know there are artists that can't seem to catch a break, but yet they don't quit and they stick it through. Good things come to those who wait. Don't lose yourself.

7. Love for the Fans.
When you make good music, you gain fans. Fans who love your music and who love you. That can ALL change when your fans meet you and you act like you don't care about them. You + Fans = You doing something right. We love interaction :)

8. Good Personality.
People love to see that their favorite artists love having a good time and to joke around. Also, we love it when you're nice. No need to take yourself too seriously. If you can't have fun while you're doing something you supposedly love, what's the use?

9. Define Your Music, Don't Let Your Music Define You.
Let that marinate.

10. Work Hard.
A good artist doesn't get "success" the easy way. Success doesn't necessarily deal with album sales or anything of the sort. I don't believe success can be handed to you on a plate. You have to get up of your bottom and go get it for yourself.

All of the artists I mention on this site are good artists. But maybe the word good isn't strong enough? Who knows. And again, these are just opinions. I may be leaving some things out, and if you have something else to add please do.