VOLUME IV. 5.18.12
We hereby present to you the Wondaland W LIST….a funky gathering of remarkable art i facts and experiences guaranteed to keep you balanced and on the tightrope for at least the next seven days…
(in no particular order, but arrayed in a fashion to make you smile)
1. The Facebook IPO.
Time to crack open the piggy bank for the biggest tech IPO in history. For opening day details and predictions, read here.
2. Donna Summer
The woman who introduced the world to disco passed away this week at the age of 63, a fact that “saddened” even the President. Digital Underground fans should know there would have been no “Freaks of the Industry” without her. And David Guetta fans should know that she paved the way for dance music on the pop charts. For more details on her life and legacy, read here. And celebrate by dancing (or loving) to the classic Donna Summer song below, the original 17-minute album version of “Love to Love You Baby.” Enjoy!
3. Bollywood Dreams by JonathanTogovnik.
A collection of stunning Bollywood photos courtesy of the acclaimed photographer Jonathan Togovnik. As Slum Millionaire proved to the Academy and the world, the film industry in India is serious, exhilerating and bursting over with great stories, songs and emotions. Experience all that in this book and more… A $30 ticket to India that you can take again and again.
4. Voguing and the House Ballroom Scene of New York, 1989-92 by Stuart Baker (editor) and Chantal Regnault (photographer).
Speaking of photos and intriguing art scenes, New York continues to stun us again and again. And over the years, black folks in New York have been steady innovators in music, dance, fashion, you name it. All of that innovation is on display in this wonderful rush of photos collected by Stuart Baker. Make no mistake: this is the late 80′s black gay club scene that Madonna (hmmm what’s the kindest word we can use?) appropriated in order to make her worldwide smash single and video for the song “Vogue.” And if you’re wondering where she and her dance descendants (ummmmm Lady Gaga) got their funk from…look no further…(see the photo above)
5. Chuck Brown.
Another funk genius has passed away. Hailed everywhere as “The Father of Go-Go,” Chuck Brown was tireless onstage, dancing and playing to the very end. And we’ll never forget his many funk classics which include the party anthem “Busting Loose” (see below). Read more on his life and legacy here.
6. Spy: The Secret World of Espionage (Discovery Times Square Exhibit, New York)
Remember watching James Bond when you were young and believing anything was possible? Exploding cigars, collapsible motor scooters, shoes with listening devices embedded in the heel. Well, thanks to this new exhibit, you can see that reality is a lot like your very fondest childhood fantasies. It truly is possible to poison your enemies with a coin. And unlike the rest of the fogies at the exhibit, you’ve known and believed that since you were five years old. And you were right! For more exhibit details, read here.
7. Michael Eric Dyson.
We just want to take a moment to salute Michael Eric Dyson who went to war this week with black church conservatives over the Obama gay marriage announcement. You’ve gotta hear Michael preachin to really get the true sound of freedom. Watch here.
8. John Douglas Thompson.
Who knew the greatest Shakespearean actor alive was black? We sure didn’t. But according to James Shapiro, a Shakespeare scholar at Columbia, Thompson is “the best American actor in Shakespeare, hands down.” Find out this and more about Thompson in the revealing New Yorker profile.
9. Aaron Sorkin Signs On to the Steve Jobs Biopic.
That’s all we have to say. Really. We’re excited. And oh yeah, according to Sorkin, it won’t be a standard “cradle to grave” biography. And double, oh yeah, Steve Wozniak is involved. That’s a lot to take in, we know. Read more here.
10. Belita Woods
One of the funkiest voices ever has just left for the mothership. On May 14th, Belita Woods passed on, joining other P-Funk core members back in the pyramids in the sky. Wow. It’s best to celebrate her life and funky sanging by dancing. And by reading George Clinton’s testimony on her life and legacy here.