I’m writing this article from a really strange and bitter place. I grew up in a household where not only giving money to charities was normal, but also our time and effort. My mother was a chair of the Atlanta Women’s Resource Center, and our house was a safehouse for abused women and children. Once I was able to drive, I donated my time to campaigns on various levels. To this day, since I don’t have the time volunteer, I donate to various causes when I can, as well as strangers and friends in need when I encounter them. However, in my older age, I have experienced encounters that discourage giving.My company was a sponsor for an anime club at a local library, for which I had to run and pay for my own background check. I bought food, refreshments, and planned outings for the future. None of it happened. In the end, I think the librarians that oversaw the group were weirded out that I wanted to help. When I tried to find other groups in libraries to sponsor, I received what I perceived resistance.
Well, at least that’s what I felt in my heart. Since when did it become so hard to help? Since when was my money, or my company’s money not good enough. I’m not wealthy, and it’s not like I was going to donate thousands, but I was considering in the triple digits at least. It’s a lot for me and my company, but that shouldn’t even be a factor, should it? Shouldn’t the correct response for all of them been something to the effect of, “Hey, thanks! We appreciate it! We are very busy right now with the protests and COVID-19, but we would heartily accept whatever efforts and donation you have to give.”
Well, I’ll keep this article short and sweet. There’s a lot of talented folks out there hurting because of The Quarantine; artists, entertainers, business owners…strippers..? Yes, that last one might be funny, but hey, everyone has to eat, and that’s about as intimate a job as I can think of that is probably being killed by COVID-19. So, the next time you think about donating to a Black Lives Matter cause, think about how much of that donation will actually go to helping, once all the salaries, meals for volunteers, cuts from funding companies, and whatever various miscellaneous fees that middle men and bureaucrats can think of get paid for. Keep your support local.
Go to the local comic shoppe or pub. Purchase something from an Etsy. Become a patron to your local artist. Send a PayPal to your favourite musician. Of course, you can go down to your local strip club that reopened, and place some dollar bills on the ground for your favourite dancer. (Remember social distancing..!)
I think that the one good thing about The Quarantine is that we are all beginning to appreciate the potential for closeness we all took for granted. A lot of us are hurting financially as well as socially. Supporting your local artist, entertainer, or business help solve both of those problems.
I’ve actually lived half a life that if I wanted to learn about the latest music, I go to YouTube, Vevo, or Vimeo. ‘The other half before, I would go to MTV, VH-1, or BET. This isn’t one of those “yesteryears articles,” so don’t worry. You’ll be spared of any stories. I thought I’d talk about some of the ladies of YouTube that I’ve been occupying my time with, lately.. .If you haven’t heard of them, you might be glad you just did. Each one of them are very unique, even amongst themselves, so I think you’ll be entertained by my choices These are my Guilty Pleasures: Divas of YouTube.
Yeah…I know. You try to find a better word for “woman who musically vocalises or stylises well.”
Well, it worked! Lion Babe is actually the duo of Jillian Hervey and Lucas Goodman, and I thought it was a diva that liked to show off her handsome boyfriend in her videos. Jillian Hervey is the singer/dancer combo we have all come to know and love in entertainment, and Lucas Goodman is a producer. I think that he plays guitar and some other instruments, as well as handling sound quality, but there is not very much written about him.
As a style, I would describe them 2 parts Erykah Bahu, 1 part Beyoncé at her funkiest, and a big pat of Doja Cat for thickening and smoothness.
“I have been kicked out of my home for being gay. I felt that.” –Brooke Candy
Brooke Candy is a straight up succubus that found YouTube and said, “Bet! I’ll never go hungry for souls and sex again!” Background-wise, Brooke Candy is a rapper/singer, songwriter, fashion stylist, and director from LA.
According to Zheani, she was a fan that was contacted, groomed, and then lured to South Africa to meet Ninja (Watkin Tudor Jones), where he gave her drugs, alcohol, and performed strange sexual and mental acts both with and against her will at times. This was a part of his conditioning to make her a convenient human sex object.
According to Die Antwoord, Zheani has been called everything from a former girlfriend, a fan, an employee, and even a satanic prostitute looking to come up. Ninja said he had her flown to see him, but felt “catfished” when she arrived. Even though he was displeased with her, he had sex with her, became friends, and even hired her.
I’m not going to get into the controversy anymore. I felt that I had to touch on it for her background. As for the rest of it, much of the money she got for her career she got as investments from crowdfunding and what she might call “creative marketing.”
What can I say about Zheani’s style? Zheani sort of reminds me of an anime pixie with an angel’s voice, and a sailor’s vocabulary. She likes to sing and rap about having a good time and screams about the bad ones…but it ALL sounds great! Of course when she vocalises about lighter and happier things, the melodies of the music fit; it’s almost two different great styles. However, I think she really shines when she’s angry or excitable, like in “Powder Tuff” and “The Question.”
I get the feeling that her name is more telling than people realise, in the fact that the personality is somewhat of a product. When I look at the total package of Snow Tha Product, I get the feeling that she and several individuals sat down to think of the best YouTube personality that she could become…and that is the brilliance of who she really is.
Snow Tha Product is just as entertaining and addicting to listen to when she spits English or Spanish. She’s sexy. She’s bold. She’s even cute when she wants to be. (not nearly as often as I wish she was, BUT…that could be a part of her charm that just isn’t meant for me)
Trivia: I believe that she is a mother of one son (about 11 years old), and said she wanted to be a social worker when she was growing up.
We are all products of our times, in some aspects. They try to mold us by their rules. ‘What’s acceptable for race, sexual, sex, professional, as well as so many other relations. As we grow up, we push, ignore, and create our own norms. The distance we travel and the morals that we establish, much to the dismay to the ones that came before us, become the new times that contribute to, and judge the new future.
I’m sorry, I tend to wax didactic. ‘Back to Ashnikko. None of the artists that I’ve mentioned in this article can really fit in a box. No style of anything should really be absolutely uniform or predictable. Ashnikko practices this concept very well. She raps. She sings, but what is her style? That’s hard to explain, because not only would Ashnikko not be able to exist 20 years ago, (Such fusions of styles and images would be far too unfamiliar and incompatible.) but her style is understood without words, as her image is almost cliché…for the times. (Am I the only one that could see her dating Oliver Tree for a second, only to have him stalking her for the rest of her life?)
Ashnikko is a sign of the times. She is an avatar. She is Hip Hop with a Punk aesthetic, an weeaboo frame, a digital coating, and creamy inside that has a slightly more refined and aged taste than you would expect. Oh, and she smells female. She smells extremely female, which of course attracts other females. This seems to give her some amount of pride as well, despite not really trying for any male attention, except as a target for her rage for being mentally inferior. (“Stupid”)
Ashnikko: She’s NOW! Try some! You just might like her!
“I don’t have to fake it. Real recognise real. They already know.” –Jessi, “Who Dat B“
Ho, ho, ho! I had to write about this lady! She is the antithesis of many of the other ladies on this list! She is from the East, heavily dipped in music and culture from the West, and her love is serious! ‘Don’t understand? Just how Zheani surrounds herself in otakukawaii in “LULU,” Ashnikko is portrayed in “Tantrum,” and Snow Tha Product gets down in her kigurumis in “NoWhere To Go,” Jessi immerses herself in the Hip Hop culture…However, Jessi can argue that Hip Hop IS her culture, and her claim to it is legitimate in almost every way. Let me explain…
Jessi was bourne Jessica Hyun-ju Ho, and as you might have guessed, is a Korean-American rapper/singer and songwriter. In fact, Jessi was bourne in New York, raised in New Jersey, and moved to South Korea when she was 15…Yeah, she was pretty much USAmerican when she moved.
I don’t know how attitudes are in South Korea, but I heard that North Koreans have a serious problem with Korean-Americans, and that would-be idols have suffered for it in the past.
Just like her Western counterparts that adopted music and culture from their opposite hemispheres, Jessi is attracted to the more flashy and attractive attributes of that music and culture.
“It’s been difficult releasing music, but I remind myself that everything made in love must permeate and keep us bonded together in strength.” –Whitney Tai, April 13, 2020
I have been enjoying this woman’s music for some time, now. I have listened to her music break through the mold of time and trend, and become something truly timeless. Even songs like “To Be Loved” seem to have matured and evolved, when listen to, in recent performances. Whitney Tai sings with heart, soul, feeling, and true talent, separating her from a sea of synth and autotune in her own atoll of sonic beauty.
If this was 4,000 years ago, Whitney Tai would be sunning herself in shallow waters luring mariners into the foamy depths with her beauty and song.
While Whitney Tai definitely deserves the lion’s share of credit for her growth, she has worked with many people along the way, including an inner circle of similarly talented musicians and professionals in the biz. Men like Tim Janssens, aka Sunfreakz, and Andrew Kingsley have worked with her for years on many occasions, forming a perfect synergy both on stage and in the recording studio.
In fact, Whitney Tai and Andrew Kingsley also have their own group, that like Lion Babe, is a full partnership in music, completely different from Whitney Tai in feel and style: The 1905
Whitney Tai dropped her latest LP, “Apogee,” a couple of weeks ago. Her single, “Surrender” is enjoying rotation on some impressive playlists at the moment, and is receiving great reviews from critics and fans of music everywhere. Her single, “Righteous,” comes out May 12, 2020.
These are some of my ladies of YouTube. There were quite a few others that I enjoyed to some degree, yet didn’t quite find them entertaining enough to feature in this article. I even contemplated making this a two or three part article, but in the end, I just wan’t feeling them enough. If you want to check them out, feel free: Alice Chater, Nitty Scott, Bebe Rexha, AleXa, SoRi, Ängie, Qveen Herby, and Kerli.
Some of them like Alice Chater and Bebe Rexha sound somewhat dated and ordinary, while acts like AleXa, Ängie, and Qveen Herby should probably work well on paper, but also seem ordinary. I guess at one time, they would have been a little edgy, but you can’t just say “pussy” and expect be shocking anymore. You also can’t depend on trendy directing in a cool music videos to carry a song, either.
The one honourable mention that I wanted to be on this list was SoRi, but there just wasn’t enough recent stuff from her released. From what I understand, she had some small amount of success about 5 years ago, and she is in the middle of her comeback, but two songs are not enough to get a good idea of her.
I should say that I was impressed by what was out there, and both songs and videos were very different from each other. This speaks to me of hopes that her style is very versatile and that there will be different sides to her as an entertainer.
So what do you think? After you get a chance to check out some hyperlinks and listen to some songs for yourself, please come back and and share your opinions. Share and start some discussions. We would love to hear what you think.