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Name: Kike

Web Site: http://accompanykike.wordpress.com

Bio: Anyone who knows me knows that I LOVE to listen to, discover, & experience new music. So I'm just passionately trying to chase my life's first love - music :)

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    About Kike Aluko

    Anyone who knows me knows that I LOVE to listen to, discover, & experience new music. So I'm just passionately trying to chase my life's first love - music :)

    Find more about me on:

    Here are my most recent posts

    5 Reasons You Should BUY Janelle Monae “The Electric Lady”

    September 4th, 2013


    Ok, so I’m gonna keep this short & sweet, because there’s frankly TOO MUCH to say about this album. And this is a purely (incomplete) instrumental analysis, gathered from the first listen. I’m sure an entire dissertation could be written, lyrically & stylistically, about this album. But here’s a fun little table of comparisons:

     Reason  Track  Sounds Like
     #1  12: “It’s Code”  Jackson 5
     #2  13: “Ghetto Woman”  Stevie Wonder
     #3  16: “Can’t Live Without Your Love”  Frank Ocean “Sweet Life
     #4  18: “Dorothy Dandridge Eyes”  Michael Jackson “I Can’t Help It
     #5  19: “What an Experience”  “I Want to Know What Love Is” (Mariah’s version is my favorite)

     

    Bonus: Title Track (Track 4 “Electric Lady”) just because it’s great & it’s the first thing Solange has done (musically) that I actually like… O_o

    Bonus #2: PRINCE. (Track 2 “Givin ‘Em What They Love”)

    Bonus #3: Everything in between = musical beautifulness

    In conclusion: If you like anything in the third column of the table above, or PRINCE, or musical beautifulness…then you should LISTEN – and then BUY. Exclusive album preview here. Enjoy!

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    LUKE JAMES INTERVIEW: On Love & Music

    December 20th, 2012


    Source: accompanykike

    We’re so excited to have had the opportunity to interview Luke James again, right off the heels of his Grammy nomination for “I Want You,” the release of his second hit single “Make Love To Me,” and his release of his EP Whispers In The Dark. But in the midst of all this excitement and budding success, the beautifully talented singer-songwriter remains humble, honest and true to his roots.

    Check out our interview with Luke James below & visit the original post @ AccompanyKike to see an EXCLUSIVE Director’s Cut video featuring a 3-in-1 package of his 3 major hits: “Love Chile,” “Make Love To Me,” & an alternate version of “I Want You.”

    When did you first discover your gift for music?
    Luke James: Really early on, very young. Around 9 I started singing in church & also played the sax – and things just started to be very easy for me with music. I can’t really remember an exact moment, but I do know I was really young and music just came naturally to me.

    How has your New Orleans upbringing influenced you & your music?
    Luke: A lot – New Orleans is the jazz mecca of the world and it has blues, folk, hip hop, soul, gospel & so much more. The aura of New Orleans is such a very musical kind of city. It influenced me tremendously just being surrounded by all the different genres of music and the different people.

    Explain in your own words what you believe the power of music is?
    Luke: Music has the power to change the world – it has the power to change ways of thinking and people’s points of view no matter where they are in life. The definition of music is a universal language. Everyone can harmonize together even if they don’t have the same language or beliefs. Music brings all these different walks of life together. Music can influence in a great, and a bad way – so that’s why you have to be careful how you use it.

    How have things changed for you since your Grammy nomination?
    Luke: Things have not changed – the only thing that’s changed is the title before my name which is awesome & a blessing and I’m so gracious to the Grammy committee for acknowledging this gift and talent that I’ve been working on so long. It’s an amazing opportunity and I will just ride it out, Lord willing it will turn into a win.

    On that note, you seem to be very grounded in your faith, how does that play into your career?
    Luke: It keeps me sane & hopeful and just looking ahead. I’m trying my best to live in the moment and just take life as it comes because life is short. I think it’s helped me with accepting things that have gone and happened in the past and that are happening now, and it’s also giving me more understanding for things that I’ve gone through in the past and how they have prepared me for now. It keeps me humble.

    What can we expect from your album release in 2013?
    Luke: You can just expect MORE. More Luke and more insight into where Luke is in this particular part of his life. It will be very dramatic, very emotional and filled with highs & lows. You’ll see love – how I view love & how I view the world. Hopefully you will see & hear a little bit of growth and relate – you’ll just hear more about me. Just expect GOOD SOLID MUSIC.

    If there’s anything you could say to your fans, what would it be?
    Luke: I would say: Love is all we need, Love can conquer all. Whatever it is that you want to do – as long as you love it, you can have it. You will prosper if you believe it will happen. Maintain your faith, Surround yourself by like-minded people, Stay in a positive place and dream bigger than big!

    Read the full story @ AccompanyKike to see the EXCLUSIVE Director’s Cut of Luke James’s video: Make Love To Me!”

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    Yes, Luke James. I Am Officially Obsessed…

    December 12th, 2012


    So this post is going to be short, sweet & to the point…I’m officially completely obsessed with Luke James (didn’t think that was EVEN MORE possible after his first pre-album) & his new video, just released. I’ve been listening to it on repeat (literally) ever since I discovered it today. The song is shockingly (although I’m not sure why I’m surprised) good in my opinion, maybe even better than most of the songs on his first pre-album. Meant to be a preview for his second EP Whispers in the Dark which is being released on 12.12.12 (can’t WAIT, that’s also the night I get to see him live in concert!! )

    I think the video beautifully brings to life the above painting (“Sugar Shack” by Ernie Barnes – whose art has actually graced quite a few album covers, starting with Marvin Gaye’s I Want You) while cleverly connecting the title of Luke James’s first single to Marvin Gaye’s album with some subtle replacements

    When he starts to “sing it again” around 3:33 – 3:55 his dancing & facial expressions suggest that his own song affects him in the same way that it moves me…! And at that little musical transition to the heavier bass line around 3:55…I die.

    Check it out Luke James’s new video for “Make Love To Me” below, and I’m sure I will be doing A LOT more coverage of him hopefully very soon

    Original Post @AccompanyKike

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    Not Sure What’s Happening to Me…

    November 23rd, 2012


    I had a very strange experience this week. I legitimately BOUGHT an entire album (on iTunes). This literally hasn’t happened to me in years. And even more strange…it was a RIHANNA album. I NEVER thought that would EVER happen in my life.

    So here’s the backstory – I went to a SoulCycle class for the first time this week where they were celebrating Rihanna’s album release so all of the music in this particular class was from Rihanna’s new album Unapologetic. I’m thinking it must have been the combination of the awesome dark candlelit ambiance in the class paired with the swaggerific instructor who had us working out really hard on those bikes while GETTING IT to Rihanna’s album. But afterwards, I was hooked…both to SoulCycle (I definitely recommend it! But make sure your pockets are deep enough…) and – almost – to Unapologetic.

    So after coming home from SoulCycle, naturally I went to look for the album on Spotify, but it wasn’t there. So I decided to wait a couple days, knowing that albums will sometimes show up on Spotify a few days after they’re released. A few days passed, & still no album on Spotify. At this point, I got so desperate to hear the music & remember my awesome SoulCycle experience, that I went on iTunes & BOUGHT the album. I was actually a little concerned that I would have wasted my money on something that wasn’t really that great but just sounded wonderful at the time because I was loving my SoulCycle experience. But very luckily – and to my surprise – that wasn’t at all the case.

    Generally, I’m really not a Rihanna fan. She has a couple songs that I really enjoy, but for the most part, I don’t think she’s talented enough to deserve all the hype she gets. So when I heard this album, I was really SHOCKED at how much I LOVED it. That’s right – LOVED it. And what’s even more surprising is that I actually really enjoy the majority of the songs. This album is almost a straight-through no skipping listener for me. Anyway, here’s my review of my favorite tracks (which again, is most of them – I’m not even including every one that I enjoy just to spare you guys from a never-ending post lol):

    “Phresh Out the Runway” – just a good dance track & strong intro I think! I believe this was also the first song in our SoulCycle class…which def got me really hype lol

    “Diamonds” – welp, didn’t like this one at all when I first heard it outside the context of this album, but I’ve now been sold on this song.

    “Numb” – ok so this one’s sound kinda blew me away when I first heard it…& then I heard Eminem…& he just topped it all off with his reference to their last major hit at 2:25 . This addictive beat has def been played a lot more than the others.

    “Jump” – another one that blew me away…first I was drawn in by the building intro, then I was loving that cool groovy beat that dropped, then “Pony” snuck in & grabbed me by surprise, and just when I thought I couldn’t handle anymore, that dub-step just came in & closed the deal!! Such a banger to me! (Note: this YouTube version is a little fast-pitched, I couldn’t find one that was exactly the same pitch as the album version but I think the faster pitch is a much better experience than the slower-pitched ones I found…I think they’d probably speed it up for the club anyway )

    “Right Now” – like so many of these, I could see this being a really successful dance single, especially with David Guetta’s help. (Also a little sped up pitch-wise, but same deal I think this represents the song better than the slower pitch versions)

    “Nobody’s Business” – say what you will about RiRi & Breezy (I personally think they’re doing the most), but I really like this song with Breezy’s tryna-sound-like-MJ self (Not sure what’s going on with the pitch on these YouTube videos but they don’t really sound that much like Justin Bieber chipmunks on the real version lol)

    “Get It Over With” – actually feeling the lyrics on this emo one.

    “Half of Me” – probably so good because it was co-written by Emeli Sande…and it def has Sande written all over it.

    “Diamonds (Gregor Salto Downtempo Remix)” – really just like this version even better than the original, it was the last song in our SoulCycle class & such a great finale!

    More broadly, being the music industry junkie nerd that I am, this really made me think about consumer behavior when it comes to buying music. We all know record & album sales have been suffering badly for a while, but I would like to know what Rihanna’s people’s rationale was for not putting her album on Spotify. I didn’t really try very hard to find it elsewhere on the internet, but it just generally seemed less available to me than most albums (correct me if I’m mistaken). But just based on my case study of myself this week (lol), I think that if music is actually good and you make it available to people for free for a limited time (like streaming or even a live listening party) or attach it to some awesomely positive experience (like my SoulCycle class!), it seems like there’s a good chance they’ll buy it to continue listening to it if they have no other easy option…? I mean I know that artists make royalties from Spotify too, but not sure long-term what would be more lucrative for an artist. Just writing stream-of-consciousness here, but I find it all very interesting.

    All in all, I guess I’m a RiRi fan (for) now…? Sigh lol

    Source @accompanykike

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    Brandy “Two Eleven” Album Review

    November 1st, 2012


    Source: accompanykike

    After four years and a brief stint as Bran’Nu, Brandy is back with her 6th and most recent studio album Two Eleven, released on October 12, 2012. I had a chance to listen and compare to her previous albums (I admit I hadn’t listened to a full Brandy album since Full Moon…) and here are my thoughts:

    Overall I thought the album as a whole was actually quite similar to Full Moon. Originally I was kind of disappointed, thinking that Brandy hadn’t really diversified her sound since her last album, but then I realized she had 2 albums in between that I hadn’t listened to yet. Having now listened to Afrodisiac and Human Nature, I definitely see a pretty large difference between all 4 of her most recent albums. However, this latest one still reminds me of the heavy electronic influences that Darkchild brought to the majority of Full Moon (which is interesting considering Brandy’s split with him to work with a diverse group of producers after the their experience with Human).

    Read the full story @ AccompanyKike to see highlights / favorites from the album!

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    5 Videos for Halloween

    October 31st, 2012

    Original Story at: accompanykike

    Happy Halloween everyone!! If you’re on the East Coast and in the path of Frankenstorm Sandy, I hope you’re all safe!! But if you’re stuck inside like most people I know over here, hopefully these videos will help you pass at least some time and bring back some entertaining Halloween memories…

    5. Backstreet Boys “Everybody (Backstreet’s Back)”LOL I had to do it!! Hahahaha…don’t tell me y’all didn’t jam to this song back in the day?!

    4. Missy Elliott “Get Ur Freak On”Ummm…this video was pretty weird right?? I was always pretty freaked out when her head snaked off like that lol…

    3. Michael Jackson “Ghost”MJ always had such an interesting affinity to ghosts, monsters, zombies & the like…I love it when that skeleton starts GETTING IT like MJ!! Haha

    2. Busta Rhymes “Gimme Some More”This video always scared me so much!! And it didn’t help that it sampled the theme from Psycho…but I always loved this song

    1. Michael Jackson “Thriller”Of course no surprise here, one of the most GENIUS & influential videos from the King of Pop himself!

    So, what are your other favorite scary / videos songs that I missed??

    Read the Original Story at: accompanykike

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    Top 10 R&B Proposal Songs

    October 25th, 2012


    Maybe it’s just me, but I feel like it’s been engagement season for about the past 2 years. I’m thinking it’s because it was at that time when many of my friends began to approach the mid-twenties stage during which we supposedly try to start getting our lives together, including thinking about the future and who we want to spend it with.

    So for those of you who are in this boat and perhaps thinking about popping that big question (or if you’re just in the mood to hear some good old-fashioned R&B love songs), here’s a list that may inspire you. Some are tried & true and some may kind of surprise you, but hopefully you’ll enjoy our Top 10 R&B Proposal Songs.


    10. Ginuwine “Differences”

    Not gonna lie, was kind of (read: COMPLETELY) obsessed with this song when it first came out, & couldn’t stop joining in with those distinctive snaps. Let’s just attribute the…interesting…video to the fact that it came out back in 2001…?

     


    9. Jaheim “Never”

    Like many of the songs on this list, this is a beautiful piece about how one special woman has completely changed her man’s entire outlook on love.

     


    8. Jesse Powell “You”

    Beautifully passionate song! Nothing like a sax solo to take a love song to the next level ;)

     


    7. Eric Benet “Never Want to Live Without You”

    Really just love this one. Again, so beautiful. Hopefully this song applies more to Eric’s current wife than it did to Halle…

     


    6. R. Kelly “Forever”

    So I will happily acknowledge that R. Kelly is prooobably not the one to look to for the best example of lasting love. But I’ve always really felt this song from Chocolate Factory, especially when he starts screaming “Marry Me!” towards the end.

     


    5. Barry White “You’re the First, the Last, My Everything”

    Gotta throw it back to one of the first recorded songs on this list from the man who had the deepest voice I’ve heard – just can’t help but smile when listening to this one!

     


    4. Al Green “Let’s Stay Together”

    Taking it back to another old school hit from the great Al Green…I don’t think you can go wrong with a song endorsed by the President!

     


    3. Luke James “I Want You”

    So maybe this song is so high on this list because I’m kind of (again, read: COMPLETELY) obsessed with Luke James, but how can you not be after hearing the passionate conviction in that voice??

     


    2. Case “Happily Ever After”

    Such a beautiful song & video! And pay close attention to who plays his girlfriend-turned-fiancée in the video…

     


    1. K-Ci & JoJo “All My Life”

    Finally at the top! And it should be no surprise this classic pick landed here. I think it’s a safe bet for any R&B lover! And, like many on this list, can also double as a wedding song as well.

     


    Now, I would like to quickly acknowledge one song that you may have been expecting that did NOT make the list: Jagged Edge “Let’s Get Married.” Listen to those lyrics – “We ain’t gettin no younger, we might as well do it??” NO THANKS! Haha!



    slimin45mins

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    Internet Radio Fairness Act: Take Action to Protect Internet Radio

    September 28th, 2012


    If you’ve used Pandora anytime in the last couple days, you’ve probably already heard about the Internet Radio Fairness Act that Founder Tim Westergren is encouraging all users to support by contacting their representative. I’ve already heard quite a few personal appeals from Tim Westergren myself that have interrupted my Pandora listening, as well as received a personal email from him about it. But what is the Internet Radio Fairness Act and why is it such a big deal?

    The Internet Radio Fairness Act is a bill that was recently introduced in Congress that seeks to ensure equity in the royalties paid by various radio platforms. Pandora apparently pays 50% of its revenue in royalties, while satellite competitors like SiriusXM pay only about 7.5%. Clearly a stark and dramatic difference! To address the difference, this bill is proposing that the same royalty standard be applied across internet radio, satellite, and cable by decreasing Pandora’s royalty obligation to be more comparable with its competitors. In one of his appeals, Westergren points out that so many new artists that wouldn’t otherwise be heard are discovered on Pandora and Internet Radio, but the unusually high royalties that Pandora is forced to pay will prove prohibitive in the continued success of internet radio.

    Opponents of the bill argue that it would reduce performance royalties to a level that is unfair to the artists. Instead, certain opponents are proposing that royalty rates applied to satellite and cable be raised to the same level applied to internet radio platforms, thereby leveling the playing field but also ensuring fair compensation for artists.

    I personally don’t know too much more about this debate and the subtle complexities that are sure to take place. It is refreshing to me in this election season that the Internet Radio Fairness Act is a bi-partisan proposal in support of the growth of the internet radio market. However, I also share the concern that artists should be fairly compensated in this ever-changing music industry that seems to be taking more and more money away from them. Regardless of the outcome, I believe it will have strong implications in determining the future of internet radio and how music is broadcast in general.

    Check out more coverage of this ongoing debate here, and learn more about the Internet Radio Fairness Act here.

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