Tag Archive | "Miley Cyrus"

Fashion Meets Music: Long Live the King of Pop

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Fashion Meets Music: Long Live the King of Pop

So smooth, so souful, the teen dream of girls in the 70s

So smooth, so soulful, the teen dream of girls in the 70s

With last Friday marking the one year anniversary of his death, we are revisiting Michael Jackson’s influence on pop culture as a whole that has spanned several generations.

In the world of pop music, there is Michael Jackson and there is everybody else. New York Times, 1984

In an age where artists are granted icon status after they have managed to stretch their 15 minutes of fame into a somewhat lucrative career, Michael Jackson stands alone as the one solo artist that everyone born in the last half of the 20th century can identify. While Elvis Presley and The Beatles produced music my parents and I can agree on, only Michael Jackson remained relevant producing music throughout both their lifetimes and mine. The fact that both his influence and career spanned over 30 years and hundreds of hits ensures that his music will continue to live on well past tragic death.

In the 1970’s, long before boy bands were a thought in record label execs’ eyes, the Jackson 5 was murdering the charts with their infectious melodies and making teenage girls weak with their boyish good looks. Before Justin Beiber was a twinkle in his father’s eye, girls were getting Jackson fever and stopping at nothing for a glimpse of the brothers, and who could blame them. Little Michael and his brothers kept their fros fresh and their leisure suits crisp as they wowed everyone from the cities to the suburbs with appearances on  everything from The Ed Sullivan Show and American Bandstand to their own Saturday morning cartoon. As the decade progressed and Michael grew from the precocious young star of his family’s group to a talented young adult seeking to become a star in his own right, he eventually went on to leave the group and produce his first solo record with Epic, Off The Wall. The release of Off The Wall proved that Jackson was camapble of directing the course of his own career and further established him as a bona fide solo star.

Michael in all his 80s glory...zipper jacket and all

Michael in all his 80s glory...zipper jacket and all

Following the success he achieved as a child in the 70s, Michael Jackson entered the 1980s with nowhere to go but up. That decade saw MJ at his best with his top selling album Thriller making its debut, his performance at Motown 25 which brought the moonwalk into our living rooms, the birth of his infamous rhinestone glove, and MJ being the first African-American artist to have a video shown on MTV. As a kid in the late 80s, I remember my older cousin having a picture of herself with an MJ backdrop hanging on her wall and trying to do the lean from Smooth Criminal after watching Moonwalker one too many times. During these ten short years, Jackson proved over and over again that he was the most talented musician on the scene. As he moved from the height of his fame in the 80s into the decade that would tarnish his career and reputation, Jackson continued to revolutionize the way that we think about pop music.

All hail the King of Pop

All hail the King of Pop

If the 70s saw the rise of my mom’s MJ, and the 80s was my Jackson decade of choice, the 90s definitely belongs to my younger brother who at age 5 danced around our living room to “They Don’t Really Care About Us”. Before everything got crazy and he married Lisa Marie Presley, had two kids with nurse Debbie Rowe, and was in court defending himself against false allegations, Jackson was keeping us entertained with the release of his eighth album Dangerous and his unforgettable performance at Super Bowl XXVII.  As Jackson’s wacky antics began to overshadow him as a performer, even his most loyal fans began to distance themselves from him.

In the end, the storm of tabloid tales that continue to surround him after his death have done little to change the fact that Jackson was  and still  is the most successful recording artist of all time. There isn’t an artist alive, from Madonna to Miley, that wasn’t touched in some way by his work. Beyonce’s golden gloved hand in her Single Ladies video, Gaga’s over 7 minute long video for Telephone, Chris Brown, Uher, and Justin Timberlake’s dance moves, and even a pre-K Fed Britney (did I mention K-Fed was in the video for You Rock My World as a back-up dancer?) can attribute their success to Michael Jackson’s ground breaking work as a musician, dancer, philanthropist, and visionary.

Cue the video….

MJ killing the robot on Soul Train

My absolute favorite MJ song is and will always be Dirty Diana

A 90s MJ classic, with Iman, Eddie Murphy, and a pre-movie theater Magic Johnson.

Layout by Feesh

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M.I.S.S. In the Mix: M.I.A. “Born Free” Music Video!

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M.I.S.S. In the Mix: M.I.A. “Born Free” Music Video!

M.I.A. releases the video from her upcoming third album for the Diplo produced "Born Free".

M.I.A. releases the video from her upcoming third album for the Diplo produced "Born Free".

Usually when we’re treated to a music video from M.I.A, we drool over the bold colors, ethno-psychedelic prints, dancing (both choreographed and chain-link inspired), and jumpsuits galore wrapped up in Maya K’s larger artistic meditations.

Her latest, while devoid of any dancing, is an artistic meditation unlike any we’ve seen from M.I.A.–or most people making music lately, for that matter. Directed by French auteur Romain Gavras, the video for the single “Born Free” from her upcoming third album is a graphic and violent commentary on the undisclosed and often disturbing nature of hot-button global issues including racial profiling, immigration, and military/police brutality.

Directed by Romain Gavras, "Born Free" is a violently graphic meditation on ethnic profiling, military agression, and the roots of terrorism.

Directed by Romain Gavras, "Born Free" is a violently graphic meditation on ethnic profiling, military aggression, and the roots of terrorism.

The nearly 9 minute video, which is pretty much a masterful short film, is shot verite-style and aims to capture the covert process of a nation’s (which in this video, happens to be the US) targeting of a minority” population. Paired with a pulsating, punk rock drum beat produced by longtime M.I.A. collaborator Diplo, the video depicts a gang of sinister military figures invading the homes of unsuspecting citizens, violating their civil liberties and physically brutalizing them, and later point blank assassinating the targeted minority–red headed males–one by one in the desert.

Always politically outspoken, the Sri Lankan born performer is famously publicized as a defender of the “terrorist” organization LTTE, better know as the Tamil Tigers.  It really is no great surprise that M.I.A.’s latest album addresses political issues, but what is surprising is the graphic, and shockingly accurate, nature of the violence in “Born Free”. With American values proliferating the rest of the world on such a grandiose scale thanks to the media, a majority of US citizens (particularly those of the right-wing sector) fail to realize that American isn’t always right.  And although it’s not the easiest pill to swallow, the singer’s representation of the American military force as aggressors of the most oppressive kind is a wake up slap-in-the-face for many in this country, who often forget that we aren’t always the great liberators that Fox News makes us out to be. M.I.A is making a statement, but with “Tik Tok” and “Party in the USA” among the other top female offerings circulating at the moment, I’m personally glad that someone’s decided to make music, and a healthy bit of controversy, for the thinking listener.

M.I.A.’s third, and as of now untitled, album is slated for release on June 29th off her label N.E.E.T, in association with XL and Interscope. View “Born Free” below, or on www.miauk.com, and visit neetrecordings for a download link to “Born Free”.

Images courtesy of Dani and Feesh

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82nd Annual Academy Awards:  Fashion at the Oscars

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82nd Annual Academy Awards: Fashion at the Oscars

Fashion at the Oscars: Jennifer Lopez in Giorgio Armani Prive & Sarah Jessia Parker in Chanel Haute Couture

Fashion at the Oscars: Jennifer Lopez in Giorgio Armani Prive & Sarah Jessia Parker in Chanel Haute Couture

One of my favorite nights in fashion just came to a close and of course I’m here to give you my two cents.  When I covered the Golden Globes earlier this year, the main thing I took away was that I was…yawn, bored.  The Oscars were a bit more interesting but most actresses still played it safe – but at least some had the good sense to wear couture!

My two favorite dresses of the night happened to be haute couture:  Jennifer Lopez in Giorgio Armani Prive and Sarah Jessica Parker in Chanel Haute Couture.  Lopez was stunning in an iridescent pink dress that was equally sparkly and dramatic.  The extra petal at her hip were beautiful and accentuated her feminine curves.  Parker’s gown, on the other hand, was striking in it’s simplicity. The most beautiful part of the dress was the neckline and back of the dress.  Both women wore the most popular hairdo of the night – the messy updo.

Fashion at the Oscars: Gabourey Sidibe in Marchesa &  Mo'Nique in Tadashi Shoji

Fashion at the Oscars: Gabourey Sidibe in Marchesa & Mo'Nique in Tadashi Shoji

The best story behind an outfit – without a doubt – goes to Mo’Nique.  Her entire ensemble was dedicated and made in homage to Hattie McDaniel, the first African-American actor to be nominated and win an Oscar for her role as Mammy in Gone With the Wind.  Mo’Nique stated:

The reason why I have on this royal blue dress is because it’s the color that Hattie McDaniel wore in 1940 when she accepted her Oscar. The reason why I have this gardenia in my hair, it is the flower that Hattie McDaniel wore when she accepted her Oscar. So for you, Miss Hattie McDaniel, I feel you all over me.

Overall, the ladies looked lovely and there weren’t too many missteps… though of course I had my least favorites.  Here’s my quick rundown on the trends I picked up on and my picks for different categories:

Color Trends:  Lots of metallic shimmer, especially gold, but silver and iridescent were also really popular.  Blue also was a popular color for the night – from midnight navy to royal blue to pale baby blue – blue was popular in many shades.  Pale blush was also on the carpet and I must say, I was not a fan.  The color of the dresses were too close to the color of Demi Moore’s & Anna Kendrick’s skin – they blended in too much and were not flattering (which was a shame because Demi’s dress was gorgeous!).

Couture:  Finally!  The ladies wore couture.  From Chanel, Giorgio Armani Prive, Atelier YSL, Atelier Versace, Donna Karan Couture – the ladies went a bit more high fashion.

High Slits:  At the Golden Globes the ladies showed off their um, “globes” – at the Oscars, they showed off their legs with thigh high slits.  Mariah Carey, Zoe Saldana, Demi Moore, Anna Kendrick and Jennifer Lopez all showed us a little leg.

The Messy Updo:  I’m not sure if it was the weather (rainy) or if it was intentional, but many of the ladies had messy updo’s.  Jennifer Lopez, SJP, Zoe Saldana, Penelope Cruz, Nicole Ritchie and Miley Cyrus all wore this look.

Most Improved:  Tina Fey in Michael Kors looked great.  Word on the street was that Vogue helped style her – and it showed.  She looked beautiful while still looking strong and intelligent and didn’t have any uncomfortably low necklines.  Mariah Carey also came far.  She still had the girls on display but this look was almost classy for her.

Least Favorite:  Charlize Theron & Zoe Saldana.  Charlize’s awkwardly placed rosettes drew all the attention to the breasts – and looked ridiculous.  Yes, Dior, apparently, can do wrong.  Zoe’s dress was beautiful from the waist up but the mass of tiny ruffles on the bottom of the dress was just too much.

Most In Need of Finishing School:  Miley Cyrus and Kristen Steward are tied for this one.  Kristen Stewart should stick to converse because she can’t pull off glamour.  She needs to wipe off that smug look off her face and stop slouching before she hits the red carpet.  Miley actually has great Oscar dresses (she had one of my favorites) – she just needs to be able to wear it like a lady.

Check out the gallery to see for yourself and let us know your favorites, least favorites, etc…

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Fashion Meets Music End Of Year Wrap Up

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Fashion Meets Music End Of Year Wrap Up

Michael Jackson's influence will live on for generations

Michael Jackson's influence will live on for generations

The Fashion Meets Music column is a new addition to the M.I.S.S website. We compile a list of style icons; Modernists, Eccentrics, Classics, It Girls, Rebels, etc., who impress us with their panache and decide on a weekly feature. The collision of fashion and music has always enamored me because the complete package of sound and style can elevate a live experience and inspire you to dazzle in an outfit. We even included two of the most desirable men alive; David Bowie and Pharrell Williams. However, I think its safe to say that 2009 was undeniably the year of the Avant Garde with Lady GaGa serving as its commander-in-chief. Thankfully, her stylist, Nicola Formichetti kept us faithful followers up-to-date with her performances and the genius designers behind the daring stage/everyday combinations that have caught the international fashion press abuzz as well as notable designers. The woman met  Queen Elizabeth!

Lady GaGa in Alexander McQueen

Lady GaGa in Alexander McQueen

Pants were left behind and exaggerated shapes pushed forward. Especially in the sharp angular tailoring in the shoulders of jackets courtesy of Christophe Decarnin at Balmain, whose muse was 80’s luminary; the late Michael Jackson. Fashion in the Pop star world definitely became more tough and quite glittery. Accessories mirrored the look of body armor or came studded. Sparkly biker jackets and shiny micro-minis were all over red carpets and fashion editorials. Pink known for her edgy approach to, well, everything, and earthy Colombian songstress, Shakira both arrived at the MTV Video Music Awards in the same diamond chain embellished Balmain leather dress! Even the ladylike and mild mannered Beyonce transformed into Sasha Fierce dripping in Thierry Mugler and Alexander McQueen. Rihanna definitely stepped up her Pop star status with her daring outfits mixing well known designers pieces like Rodarte’s leather diamond laser cut leggings with independent designers like A-Morir by Kerin Rose‘s Barracuda sunglasses in the “Run This Town” video. What do you think of her new video? I was feelin’ it until she jumped on a hot pink tank and straddled the cannon in a Mickey Mouse helmet. Oh RiRi.

Pink and Shakira in the same Balmain dress! Who wore it better?

Pink and Shakira in the same Balmain dress! Who wore it better?

Rihanna in her new video, "Hard"

Rihanna in her new video, "Hard"

I was raised by a SoCal mother who would escape to Mexico on the weekends, listened to Led Zepplin, and has the backstage passes in our photo albums to prove it. I’m a rocker at heart. I don’t think I was more excited than the mega return of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs and Karen O. Hands down the best show I attended this year; opened by Philly’s darling with the dirty mouth and M.I.S.S favorite, Amanda Blank. Karen O’s costume designer, Christian Joy created the visual splendor that she paraded in with her yoga-like stretches while belting out hits like “Heads Will Roll” and  “Y Control” compelling me to ‘dance until I was dead’ Oh! Too easy. The giant eyeball bouncing about the stage reminded me of the Mishka “Keep Watch” leggings I was rockin’ this year which got just as much fanfare as completely appalled/disgusted looks. Other women who rock that we featured were, The Gossip’s lead singer Beth Ditto, 60’s French Ye Ye Girl Francoise Hardy, artist/fashion designer/Sonic Youth’s lead bassist and singer Kim Gordon, the adorable Katy Perry, and my personal favorite (whom I would probably have a Wayne and Garth “we’re not worthy” moment with if i ever met) Gwen Stefani.

The Almighty Karen O

The Almighty Karen O

Then there are the musician/designer collabos that set the internetz on fire. Kanye West and Louis Vuitton put out a few version’s of a high priced sneaker. Miley Cyrus and Wal-Mart recently teamed up for a capsule collection. The Kings of Leon (swoon) teamed up with the Paris-based creative collective, Surface to Air, on a flannel heavy collection of mountain-man staples. Kim Gordon came out with the Mirror/Dash collection at Urban Outfitters. The most enduring style stars that have developed their global brands the best have to be, Pharrell Williams at Billionaire Boys Club and Gwen Stefani at L.A.M.B. What were some of your favorite collaborations? And did you purchase anything?

Gwen Stefani and her Harajuku Girls

Gwen Stefani and her Harajuku Girls

I hope everyone has a fabulous New Year donning their prettiest sparklers, even if your in your PJ’s! Carrie Bradshaw killed it with her sequin hat a la the Sex And The City movie. So looking forward to the next one! And looking forward to discussing more of our fashion inspirations. Peace out 2009!

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The Link List: 10.12.09

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The Link List: 10.12.09


♥♥ If you watch America’s Next Top Model, I hope to god that you are reading Rich Juzwiak’s recaps on Four Four. For the animated .gif’s alone!

♥♥ It’s cute, creative and weird all at the same time. Dead fly art via Urlesque.

♥♥ Miley Cyrus quit that twitter bitch. Then she rapped about it on Youtube.

♥♥ And speaking of Youtube, this dude skillfully popping his booty is just about the best thing I’ve seen in weeks. Mesmerizing.

♥♥ Jeremy Scott is kind of killing it with these hologram winged Metro Attitude Hi’s. The  Adidas Originals X Jeremy Scott Spring 2010 Preview is looking fresh to death as usual via Highsnobette.

♥♥ “Let’s not beat around the grey haired bush” about what’s going on at the Single Cougars Convention. Miss Cougar America! via Current TV.

♥♥ Save the money you might spend on invisilign! If you have a gap between your teeth, you don’t necessarily need braces to conform to conventional beauty. Complex counts down their favorite gap toothed ladies.

♥♥ Super feelin this Skream Remix of the new Chromeo joint Night By Night. Download from Mola Super Poco.

♥♥ “Yours To Keep”  Is the new joint by The Teddybears featuring Neneh Cherry!  downloadable from The Burning Ear.

♥♥ Very cool public art by Liesbet Bussche that replicates jewelry, via Diary Of A Broke College Student.

♥♥ Zip a dee doo dah. The Zipper trend makes it’s way to jewelry by blogger Style Hurricaine.

♥♥ You know how people write “wash me!” on the windows of dirty cars? Well this dirty car art by Scott Wade takes that to another level, and you certainly would not want to wash it off. Via Beautiful/Decay.

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