I’ve written about the Kinjaz but I haven’t yet about ALiEN Dance Studio. In my many YouTube travels, I came across this choreography video of Tinashe‘s song “2 On” and was entranced. I’ve seen several male-only and mixed-gender dance crew videos on YT with much admiration and excitement, but ALiEN Dance Studio brings a bold and sensually precise dimension to the dance moves.
Their videos of Bruno Mars and Britney Spears songs leave me speechless.
While we’re on the subject of grooving tunes, I watched All Eyez on Me (Benny Boom, 2017) over the weekend. While I enjoyed the film and loved the music, I agree with many of the criticisms of the film discussed here on Reddit. When Tupac Shakur was successfully navigating the rap scene in the 1990s, I was listening to The Cranberries, Cake, Dishwalla, Live, Bjork, Whitney Houston, Mariah Carey, TLC, En Vogue — basically lots of alternative rock and top 40s pop/rock and r&b. While I knew who Tupac was and had come across his music by virtue of being a teenager of the 90s and immersed in pop-cultural media, it wasn’t until I saw the music video for “Gangsta Party” (aka “2 of Amerikaz’s Most Wanted”) featuring Snoop Dogg that I paid (more) attention to his voice and presence. I liked the rhythm of the song.
During the late 90s through the mid-2000s, I listened primarily to Asian pop music (Japanese, Korean and Chinese (Mandarin). Given the way Korean pop, hip-hop, and hip-pop have evolved in the last few years, I feel as though I owe my taste for Tupac’s music to Korean hip-pop. * Specifically, these kinds of tunes:
There is no soundtrack for All Eyez on Me, but Tupac’s albums are available to own. After YouTubing a few of the songs on his album of the same name, I went to Best Buy and got it. Let me tell you, driving while listening to “All About You” has been so much fun. Snoop Dogg’s narration at the end is hilarious. It’s also interesting to realize that “Recipe” by Kpop girl group Brown Eyed Girls lyrically samples “How Do You Want It.”
So why would I watch a movie about a rapper whom I didn’t really listen to when he was still alive? I saw Notorious (George Tillman Jr., 2009) in theatres out of curiosity and not too long ago watched Straight Outta Compton (F. Gary Gray, 2015). I figured I’d have to watch the Tupac biopic for symmetry.
* I am aware that American hip-hop heavily influenced Korean hip-pop.