SOULcial Studies: The Real Rap on (so-called) Reality Show Stardom

I’m not the biggest fan of Dr. Boyce Watkins, but I have to admit, more often than not, he’s on point.

Opining on a recent interview Kandi Burruss gave Madame Noire.com, he says he’s “proud of Burruss”. For those of you who wannabe reality tv stars – and there’s an alarmingly high number of you – it’s worth the read.

Kandi Burruss of Real Housewives of Atlanta

Kandi Burruss of                               Real Housewives of Atlanta

Kandi Burruss explained that being a reality TV star is not as financially rewarding as some might think … [and] why she works to live below her means. “On a new reality show they’re not making anything,” she said. “If they are getting anything, it may be like $2,500 per episode to $5,000, at the most. Most times, like say for instance the women who started out on our show, in the beginning they didn’t get anything for that first year. They got like $5,000 for the whole season just for the use of their house. When I first came on they didn’t really hardly pay me anything either. A lot of those shows do not pay a lot of money.”

Lessons for those who think they wannabe a star:

“1) The words “rich” and “famous” don’t always go hand-in-hand. The worst thing in the world is to be famous and have everyone think you have more money than you actually have. This happens a lot for entertainers who have no understanding of business models.

2) Conservatism is the key to financial survival: Unfortunately, materialistic culture promoted through music and movies promotes the opposite, leaving us looking really stupid later on down the line.

3) You must be your own business and brand in this ever-changing economic landscape: Even if someone gives you a job, always find a way to create your own job.”

Here’s the link for the entire piece:

http://financialjuneteenth.com/rhoas-kandi-burruss-describes-the-stupidity-of-living-the-glamorous-life/

RESPECT DUE – GEORGE DUKE, dead at 67.

George Duke, musician, keyboardist, composer, mentor, innovator, professor and trailblazer has passed away. He was 67.

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Besides being a collaborator with some of the biggest and most important names in the history of music he also released more than 30 solo albums.

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He was well known as a Jazz & fusion musician and R&B artist when he recorded his biggest hits “Reach For It” & “Dukey Stick” in 1977.

“Dukey Stick” – George Duke

“Reach For It” – George Duke

He also scored a hit collaborating with Stanley Clarke.

“Sweet Baby” – The Clarke/Duke Project

I didn’t know George Duke but I have a gang of friends and associates who did. I never heard a single person say a negative word about him. I met him a few times during my BET tenure and every single time I saw him I swear he was smiling.

A big Teddy Bear of a man, he was a mentor to a few generations of musicians and played just about anything he wanted from Jazz to Funk to R&B to Fusion.

He collaborated with too many artists to list but here’s a smattering: Frank Zappa, Jean-Luc Ponty, Miles Davis, Stanley Clarke, Michael Jackson, Dizzy Gillespie, Al Jarreau, Deniece Williams, Sheila E, Patrice Rushen, Billy Cobham, Edwin Hawkins, Regina Belle, Angela Bofil, Anita Baker, Joe Sample, Phil Collins, George Clinton, Cannonball Adderley, Mike Mainieri, Flora Purim, Milton Nascimento, Rachelle Ferrell, Marcus Miller, Teena Marie, Ndugu Chancler, Jill Scott and his cousin Dianne Reeves.

He was also liberally sampled by producers and rappers such as Kanye West, Daft Punk, A Tribe Called Quest, Pete Rock & CL Smooth, MF Doom, Mylo, Ice Cube and many, many others.

George and Billy Cobham “Live At Montreux” – Full concert                       

He had recently released his last project, Dreamweaver, dedicated to his wife Carine who passed away last year after a battle with cancer.

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Here’s a short on the process behind the recording of the project.

George Duke – Dreamweaver                      

I remember a time in my life that 67 seemed old, now it seems that your 60’s might be when things become clearer and easier, if you’re lucky to have lived that long and have the good health to enjoy that period of calm & clarity

He passed from heart complications as a result from being treated for chronic lymphocytic leukemia.

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RIP, George Duke. You will be missed.