If I had a $5000 Birkin bag, I’d probably treat it the way old black folks treat furniture — I’d KEEP it in protective plastic, even when in use. But that’s me. Clearly, $5000 is nothing to Lady Gaga. She was photographed out with “I love little monster, Tokyo love” written in Japanese on her arm and her Birkin.

I just discovered two new songs in the “Listeners Also Bought” box when I was listening to Erykah Badu on iTunes and deciding whether I’ll buy the digital album or the CD. Both Leela James and Vivian Green, two artists I’ve been waiting for new albums from, dropped singles in the last month or so.

I really enjoyed Leela’s on first listen. “Tell Me You Love Me” is a woman’s plea with her unexpressive man to understand that she needs to hear how he feels. Listen on her site.

Although Vivian Green sounds amazing as always, her song was less of an instant hit with me. “Beautiful” also speaks directly to a man, this time about what he needs to do better with the next one – “tell her when she looks beautiful.”

I love that she starts out this song by singing, “I don’t want to waste an entire album on you, I’ve been there and done that.” Pow!

Erykah Badu and Kelis both just released videos for the first singles for their upcoming albums.

In “Window Seat” we see a knew, umm… side of Erykah Badu when she strips down to nothing on the streets of Dallas. At the end of the video, after a gunshot, Badu falls down – completely nude- in the spot where JFK was assassinated.

In “Acapella,” Kelis sports that gray hair, long tail look she raised eyebrows with in January. Somehow, it works. But pretty much everything Kelis does works for me.

Kelis – Acapella
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Erykah Badu has released the cover art for New Amerykah Part Two: Return of the Ankh, due out March 30.

A lot going on. But Erykah always has a lot going on. Can’t wait for this album.

Sofia Maldonado’s Times Square mural reminds me of women I know. It reminds me of Oaktown’s 357 and J.J. Fad, the sassy lady rappers whose style I admired as a little girl.

Maldonado’s mural, depicting Black and Latino women with long fingernails, wearing leggings, skimpy tops, hoop earrings and lip gloss, has been criticized for demeaning women of color. I even got an email from a black professionals group asking folks to come out and protest in front of the mural because it made Black and Latino women look like “prostitutes, hoes and sluts.”

Why is it that these bright and fanciful images inspire such shame? There are crotch shots in the underwear ads American Eagle Outfitters broadcasts on their 15,000 square foot LED display around the corner! Crotch shots, people! But, those REAL women are white and these DRAWN women are women of color.

Perhaps the Black women in business suits who find this mural so offensive would like to forget the long fingernails and freeze updo they wore to their prom? Perhaps. Or maybe they resent the celebration of “round the way girls” – who, I guess, aren’t supposed to be considered beautiful or worth celebrating.

I always wonder who the models on these do-rags covers are. They don’t look like models (not that anything’s wrong with that). They have to be relatives of the do-rag manufacturers, right??

According to the UK’s Sun, Jourdan Dunn’s boyfriend, and father of her two-month-old son, has been sentenced to 3 1/2 years in prison. The 20-year-old, also named Jordan (last name Cummings) was charged with possession of cocaine and intent to supply.

Several online sources say the two Jordan’s have been together for five years. That would mean this has been the boy in her life since she was 15 and not a famous model.

You have to wonder what pressures a 17-year-old boy must feel when his girlfriend is suddenly making hundreds of thousands of dollars for a day’s work. Or, who knows, maybe he was just bad news.

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