Ciara Ciara
arrives at Ciara Celebrates The Release Of Her New Album "Basic Instinct" at Drai’s Hollywood on December 15, 2010 in Hollywood, California.

An Open Letter to Ciara

Ciara,

When you blasted onto the scene with "Goodies" in 2004, you filled a void that had been left by the likes of Janet Jackson and our beloved Aaliyah. Combining understated vocals with dance moves that even the most flexible girl would envy, you Matrix’d your way inside of our hearts. With the videos and songs that followed, you brought sexy back to the regular chick, repping A-Town a la Usher, as you rocked fitted caps and booty-popped like nobody’s business. No wonder your debut album went triple plat--you were the hood’s girl next door as the Princess of Crunk&B.

Fast forward to a relationship with Bow Wow that we barely understood but still followed. Perhaps our eyebrows were raised because we couldn’t help but wonder how the premature pooch was keeping up with your “1,2 Step.” Yet, your separation from that courtship brought about a second album that was well-appreciated and garnered platinum success. When you resurfaced with the dark hair and slowed it down for the “Promise” single, we saw the Evolution you had alluded to, and you exuded levels of womanhood that we had not seen before. And then came that manly-man: 50 Cent (girl…). On top of that, you parted ways with Jazze Pha, a split that shook things up a bit.

After that came Fantasy Ride. Something was different, and we couldn’t quite figure it out. “Never Ever” was every lonely girl‘s anthem, and “Love, Sex, Magic” with Justin Timberlake was everything; but neither had given us the amount of life from your previous joints. You were still serving on the dance floor, but something was missing from your sound. With Basic Extinct, we had hoped for the resurgence of our Crunk&B girl-next-door, and “Ride” was the ultimate tease. You gave us a glimpse of that CiCi we missed: gyrating and rocking that fitted cap once again.

BET thought it was too much, we thought you were finally back.

We even thought you and Amar’e Stoudemire made a cute couple! Somehow amidst giving these projects a chance and rooting for your relationships, we have yet to see you back on top of your game. Maybe this new label move will bring you back to the top. We are patiently waiting for you to remind us of your “Goodies” days and we hope that whatever needs to be done, will.

To keep a long story short, Ciara, we miss you girl. We believe there is plenty of room for you amongst the Beyonce’s, Rihanna’s and Keri Hilson’s. In the meantime, we’ll keep thumping ourselves on floors trying to get that Matrix right. --Iyana Robertson

 

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Kelly Rowland Says Her Highly-Anticipated Project Is "Definitely Coming"

Six years ago, Kelly Rowland released her fourth studio album titled Talk a Good Game. The project boasted hit singles like "Kisses Down Low" and the transparent "Dirty Laundry." Now, the Houston native is preparing to release a project that'll surely satisfy fans' patient earbuds.

In an interview with Billboard, Rowland shared her hopes for putting out a new body of work and the pressure that she's encountered since she's been in the studio. "This is by far the longest, most pressure-filled process ever, only because I know what it's supposed to be and I have been so hard on myself. I know it," she said. "And it's the first time I've said it out loud. I've been extremely hard on myself. But it's definitely coming, and I'm more so excited about this project than anything else."

The news follows the recent release of Rowland's "Kelly" track, which was met with critical acclaim in November 2018. In addition to preparing the release of new music, the "Motivation" singer discussed fans' wish for a Destiny's Child reunion. The rumors have been fueled by social media photographs of Rowland with either Beyonce or Michelle or all three, especially during Beyonce's past Coachella performance. But Rowland assures readers that it's not what they think.

"It's so funny. I guess every time people see us together, they just see music but I see sisterhood, and that's what we are and that's what me, her, Michelle [Williams] and Solange and I are. People see us all together, they immediately think music. I'm like, no. Just family." As Rowland previously mentioned Solange, she hopes to one day work with her again.

"I'm a huge fan," she said. "I love her writing and how detailed and particular she is. I always wanted to figure out how the heck she has so many different layers of harmonies when she is constructing these vocals, and it's so complex but simple. It's genius. It's the genius in her genius mind that she has in there." One of the last times the pair collaborated was on Rowland's "Simply Deep" track off her debut solo album of the same name. Solange also penned a few songs off the same project. Fast forward to 2016, and Rowland's vocals were featured on Solange's iconic A Seat at the Table.

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Teyana Taylor To Pay Homage To Ballroom Culture In "WTP" Video

Teyana Taylor aims to keep her hot streak of innovative videos coming thanks to this recent announcement. Taking to Instagram on Wednesday (Jan. 9), the "Gonna Love Me" singer will show adoration to ballroom culture in the visual for "WTP."

Directed by Gregory "Beef" Jones, The Aunties Inc., and Taylor herself, the Harlemite takes viewers on her journey to the expression-filled space where she hopes to rack up 10s across the board from a group of judges. The premise of the video also seems to follow a mockumentary format airing on a fictional network named FEMTV. Alongside Taylor, other men and women get ready to display their talents and confidence on the ballroom floor.

"WTP" is featured on the mother-of-one's sophomore album, K.T.S.E., which was released in June 2018. While the rollout's controversy didn't entirely muddle the excitement behind the project's debut, Taylor said she was sold on the idea that her album would be treated as the biggest out of G.O.O.D. Music's string of releases last year.

"I didn't know ahead of time that there wouldn't be any singles or visuals. But I knew that it was going to be the five-album thing," she said during a HOT 97 interview. "[Kanye] wanted [my album] to be last, he wanted mine to be the biggest. That's the way they sauced it up. I was sold."

The video will debut on Jan. 19. Check out the teaser below.

 

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👀 1.19.19 👀 #WTP Directed by @teyanataylor & @ogbeefjones @theauntiesinc 🙏🏾🙌🏾🙏🏾 The wait is ALMOST over. 😏 @museumofsex

A post shared by Jimmy Neutch- Shumpert (@teyanataylor) on Jan 8, 2019 at 6:32pm PST

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Trina Braxton’s Ex-Husband, Gabe Solis, Dies After Battle With Cancer

Gabe Solis, the ex-husband of Trina Braxton, lost his battle with cancer, Thursday (Dec. 20),  TMZ reports. He was 43.

Solis passed away at his home in Texas, surrounded by friends and family, according to the outlet. No official details have been released about his passing.

Solis had reportedly been keeping his cancer battle private. His death came as a shock to his loved ones. On Friday (Dec. 21), Braxton seemingly mourned the loss of her ex-husband with a cryptic Instagram meme reading, “I need a hug..E bottle of wine.”

The former couple tied the knot in 2003, and appeared together on previous seasons of WEtv’s Braxton Family Values. Despite finalizing their divorce in 2015, Braxton and Solis confronted lingering issues from their marriage during an episode of Iyanla: Fix My Life, earlier in the year.

Braxton has since moved on to a new relationship, but remained friends with Solis.

 

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A post shared by Trina Braxton (@trinabraxton1) on Dec 21, 2018 at 9:49am PST

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