Please take a moment to hear this performance. The night this came on HBO, I had taped it on VHS (#TBT) b/c I was at my friend Felix’s birthday party & didn’t want to miss Def Poetry Jam. I had never met La Bruja, but that night she came to the party. At one point, the music stopped & she spit some spoken word. I was so taken, hooked & inspired, in awe of her passion & personality. I went home & watched the tape & saw her perform Lola & WTC. It was a double whammy! I immediately took out my pen & wrote a poem in her name called “The Good Witch”. She continues to inspire many with her magical brews.


I LOVE SIA! I love her videos just as much as there’s always something you don’t expect. Not even 1 minute in & you can feel so much. Not to mention The Amazing Maddie is the dancer & makes the interpretation that much more powerful & compelling. Sia was addicted to pain killers & alcohol. The video, lyrics & dance combine perfectly to show control, yet no control, neglect, invisibility, shame, abandonment, entrapment & loneliness… all which she experienced. And in the end, even in her crazed state, she takes a bow… even though she doesn’t care for fame. In fact, there’s a clause in her contract with RCA that says she doesn’t have to promote her music, tour or deal with the press. She’s not pressed, her music speaks for itself.

Sinéad O’Connor

So last night I was randomly watching the Oprah Network’s “Where Are They Now” & there was a piece with Sinéad O’Connor, who we all know & love & who many despise. She was talking about how when she was being signed the executives were very touchy & forward & tried it with her. They told her she would look better if she grew out her hair & wore shorter skirts. That’s when she went to the barber & shaved off her hair. Everything she did was in opposition to who/what they wanted to make her. She said she purposely tried to become as unattractive as she could be as a way to protect herself. I can see why she wrote that open letter to Miley about having more control, which also made her out to look bitter. Fast forward to when she ripped up the pic of the Pope. That was in response to the Catholic Church & the sex scandals & child abuse, which she experienced, but since the news wasn’t out in the U.S. yet, she just looked even crazier when lots of other people understood what she was doing. Mind you she’s a priest & very devout. They were all well aware of it in Ireland but it didn’t hit our news till later, which also shows how they censor things here in the United States, they hide shit & pick & choose what to show or distract you with & can make you believe anything they want with a News Report. And everyone is always plastered to their TV believing in the magic box! She was told that she was mentally ill & (mis)diagnosed by doctors as bipolar (which wasn’t true) & they put her on meds & purposely made her out to look insane. She also used the phrase paparazzi lynching, where they seek out these celebs & take pictures of them “breaking down” & turning it tragic & they use this & other tactics when the people rebel to discredit them & keep them down. Artists are first & foremost there to express themselves. When that form of expression is robbed & controlled, it’s easy to see why someone would lose it & act out. It’s a great reminder of how/what you perceive from watching the media & TV vs. what’s really going on. Of course she encountered controversy; she was speaking out on what she wasn’t supposed to. She wasn’t being a good girl & following directions, keeping her mouth shut & looking pretty. Instead, she was more concerned with expressing her views on organized religion, women’s rights, war & child abuse. She had a few kids which helped distract her, but she suffered a lot & now it all makes sense to me, why she was the way she was & dressed the way she did/does. So kudos to Sinéad for being true to herself & never compromising or conforming. THAT takes strength!

LADY GAGA – ARTPOP (Track by Track Review)

AURA – Sitting in the middle of a dessert with my banjo watching Kill Bill (slash that), starring in Machete Kills! Cool guitar intro into Terminator effects & edgy electronics. Do you want to me see me naked? It’s club ready, spacey, taking off to another planet. It’s perfect for the Robert Rodriguez film & I look forward to seeing the movie, as well as her acting debut.

VENUS – We’re dropped off in Venus on Rocket #9 & I feel like I’m in an Austin Powers movie. I want to be taken to the leader; I hope it’s the Fembots! I love the changes in the track & the chorus. Gets a little cheesy when she’s saying all the planets, otherwise, it’s a little out there & I like it. And I do feel very Aphrodite in a seashell bikini while hearing it, or rather, a fierce spacesuit.

G.U.Y. – We’re now watching a live performance via Skype from the planet Eros, God of sexual desire… and the track is just that. Out comes the alien seductress who wants to be his GUY (Girl Under You), b/c she’s from another dimension, role playing & she wants to unearth you! It’s like an old freestyle track, with hyped electrodes & a sensual baseline.

SEXX DREAMS – Now we’re in a underground 80s house party, it’s hot & people are having naughty sex! It’s thumpy, humpy, RnB, dirty, doing nasty things & masturbating … then you’re making love to Optimus Prime… and then you wake up & realize it was all just a dream… or was it?

JEWELS N DRUGS (Feat T.I., Too Short & Twista) –ErrrrrrrrrrT! Featuring… “I’m not featuring it!” What’s this track doing here? Not Gaga at all. She obviously did this one to reach new audiences & compliment the RnB & hip hop aspect but it’s not really working… fast forward!

MANiCURE – It’s Grease & a little bit rock n roll. Is it a salon manicure, or having a man cure you? Oh it’s both? Ok, either way I’m boppin’ away & I’m addicted to love, feeling like a teen-aged cheerleader while rolling on my bed singing into my brush & kicking my feet up in the air, then trying on clothes back & forth in the mirror cause I’m feeling like a mannequin. I thought that was the name of the song & I think it would’ve better & made more sense with the cover of the album & tracks in general.

DO WHAT YOU WANT – I love the slow, deep baseline, simple, not over sung or overproduced & R. Kelly adds some flavor to it. I really can’t take him sometimes but who cares, I’m turned up in the club with a drink in my hand & taking shots in the back. This just hit the radio here in FL(we’re a little behind) & I’m sure it’ll be nice for the winter, time to make some babies. But, what was that performance on SNL?

ARTPOP – It’s grown on me & I’m really digging this Tetris track. It’s very much what she’s about & whatever theme or effect she’s giving really could mean anything if you pay more attention. Perhaps she’s becoming too artsy fartsy for some & losing a few along the way. She did a short film for this she just released yesterday & funny people ask, “What does it mean?” Well, she just told you, just like art, her art pop could mean anything.

SWINE – This one is a bit loud & obnoxious, like the message. I like the words but not the music. She supposedly they say she wrote this for Perez Hilton. On Howard Stern interview she says how Perez was trying to get a place to live next to her & just harassing her & being mean, and lots of people think he’s a pig.

DONATELLA – It’s an upper class, rich bitch runway track… nose in the air feeling fru fru, very Miami & LA. A bit shady, yet complimentary to Ms. Versace. It’s perfect for the next show, which brings us into…

FASHION! – A throwback to David Bowie, now turn to the left, now to the right. I love this track, more in the beginning than in the end. “I own the world, we own the world!” And let’s face it, when it comes to fashion, she really is on top!

MARY JANE HOLLAND –Amsterdam truly does have the most magical herbs, I know! The track is chill, smooth, relaxed & lit up! While everyone else talks about “smoking the best shit”, she’s taking a different approach& actually picturing herself as Mary Jane Holland, a star. It’s as if you were coming into a room with a bunch of the best weed for all your friends &was like, “Ladies & Gentlemen, I present to you… MARY JANE HOLLAND!” And the crowd goes wild… cause you know now-a-days, weed is the celebrity everyone loves!

DOPE – Sounds like I’m sitting at the piano drunk as hell& I wouldn’t doubt it if she was when recorded this one, it’s pretty raw, melancholy, honest & out there. They say the references to drugs on this album prevented some moms from buying it. She pushes the vocals! She’s talking about how she needs her family, boyfriend & fans more than dope. She mentioned it on Howard Stern & I think it’s had some effects on her along the way. It explains the hurting low (inside) from being high for so long (fame& drugs). She lost lots of audience members on the YouTube Awards when she performed this live cause she got all emotional, but she sang the shit out of it, as sloppy, sad & drunk as she appeared, but in an artful &detached way. Then, she performed it again in Brooklyn at the iHeartMusic release after a few words on how she’s still dealing with things & wow, she can really fucking sing & had much more control… it was pretty dope! You can check it out here.

GYPSY – She’s on a new path, out on the road, fresh, alive& looking on to the future from a new perspective. She no longer wants to be alone with the night. It also reminds me of one of my favorite movies, “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun” when the girls wanted to compete in the dance competition… a little flash dance & also reminds me of the studio dance scene in Marry The Night, which I keep hearing.

APPLAUSE – Now she’s back on stage & loving the applause, poking at both sides of it. She explained this one enough, it’s not about the ego of it all (but one can interpret it that way), more about how she does what she does to make people happy & that’s the end result. The video really enhanced the track & I appreciated it more after watching it. You can see the transition from leaving behind the Fame Monster & into a higher artistic form, lighter & more colorful.

Overall, she gives you a bit of everything, one track follows the other & plays along the themes of otherworldly, EDM, rock & RnB, sex, drugs & fashion, so it’s not that out there, just sounds different to lots of people b/c she’s trying to mix up so much. She admitted it was a little heavy but that was time she was going through, so you can feel the highs & lows on this album, as well as in some tracks. It’s my least favorite album from Gaga but that doesn’t mean it’s a bad one. It’s fun, upbeat, laid back & enjoyable if you give it a chance. I’ll give it a 6.5/7 out of 10 stars!

One Love,
Carlos (CJ) Mendez

One Thing Leads To The Next

Random synchronicities have been catching up with me more than I can keep up with them. I often write about things, put them aside & wait for the right time to come up. And it always does, whether it be days, weeks or months later. But, lately, the time is always now.

I’m finding connections & messages so I want to keep sharing them b/c I can’t keep up with journal notes that I’ll get back to later. That’s what this blog is for so I’m gonna put it more to use aside from pics & quotes.

Here’s what I experienced this morning…

I saw a pic of a girl searching through library index cards… the pic said “Pre-Historic Googling”. I thought that was pretty funny. That led me to think about IQ’s, which led me to an article that led to lyrics of a song & then a video I’ve never heard before, which led me to what I posted yesterday about a movie I saw… and well… everything was in sync! This all happened in about 5 mins.

So it started with this pic…

That made me think how with technology, science & medicine being what it is today, you’d think that we’ve become smarter over the years, but in fact it’s the opposite, our IQ as a society has dropped.

People Getting Dumber

IQ of Western Civilization Dropped Since The Victorian Age

And while searching for an article on “IQ society drop”, this link came up with the key words to some lyrics of a song I’ve never heard before called “Hyperactive – Message To The Future”.

LYRICS: Hyperactive – Message To The Future

The lyrics were pretty on point with today so I searched further to see that the video was just published on YouTube about a week ago, 9.16.13. Great video, too!

And all this just circles back to what I wrote about yesterday for a movie review. I AM

I AM – The Documentary – CJ’s Review

No coincidences, just synchronicities!

Bruno Mars – Unorthodox Jukebox Review

Bruno Mars - Unorthodox Jukebox


YOUNG GIRLS – I just woke up in a Vegas daze, hung over, beat, walking down the dusky hall, making my way to the elevator while thinking about the long night I just had with all the young, wild girls. What a fucking blast! They made a mess of me and they’ll be the death of me, but I’m still rocking & rolling, dreaming about the simple life, yet, knowing that won’t exist living like this, and all these roads I drive with this lifestyle steer me wrong, but I’ll keep driving them… all… night… long.

LOCKED OUT OF HEAVEN – I couldn’t get enough of this track when it I first heard it and it’s still one of my fav, but now that I’ve heard it so many times, I’m kinda over it, the unfortunate circumstance of overplay.  What I love is the build, the break, the fun, the Toucan Sam repeating echos, electric guitars, and the heavy bass. It builds and then everything melts together and you’re just having an out of body orgasmic feeling, jumping & pumping, the like sex taking you to paradise. The video explains the feeling.

GORILLA – It’s pure sex, gorillas in the mist, sweating & nasty in the jungle! Clear the bedroom cause it’s about to go down and you can’t run in my bedroom jungle. No need to explain cause my dirty lover knows just how I like it, screaming baby give it to me muthafucker. It’s sensual, sexual, primal, chest banging Silverback sex!

TREASURE – I feel like I took a speed trip back in time, remnants of Re-run & MJ. My least favorite track but I can still enjoy it. I’m treating my golden star like a treasure cause he deserves it.

MOONSHINE – Now we’re deep on another level, an incredible chemical, physical attraction. We’re lying on the bed outside underneath the night sky, making love… it’s slow, sensual, ethereal & heavenly. The moon is shining on our bodies and we’re off to another planet, cuming alive in a special place, up in the clouds, with the moon and stars.

WHEN I WAS YOUR MAN – This song is that perfect, simple, piano ballad that makes you think about life, love & pain.  If you’re feeling sentimental about someone, you might cry. It makes you think about shit that happened in the past with different people, and how you should’ve been a better man and did all the little things you knew you could. It’s probably my fav track of all and Bruno said it’s his most personal writing to date. This track really gets you. It hurts to have had your heart broken, being too young & too dumb to know what you were supposed to do.  Now you just want the best for that person that’s no longer yours. The true love that you let go. And that can haunt just as much.

NATALIE – A deep bass & soulful, churchy clap & she’s sinning… Natalie, that bitch, she ran away with all my money. I know I should’ve known better. If you see her, tell her I’m coming. A great, jumpy track.

SHOW ME – I’m in Jamaica or any Island for that matter. I have a strong Rum Runner in my hand and eating a conch fritter watching the girls stretching their backs out with the limbo, and the rest dancing under the sun to the island sounds.

MONEY MAKE HER SMILE – The ultimate stripper track! She don’t go where preachers preach, she only goes to the church where dollars fall. This beat is one of the hottest off the album, it’s snappy, makes you want to dance, do runway, pop & pose, bounce, drop it like it’s hot, get back up and do it all over again. It’s not complicated & it won’t take a while… music makes her dance & money makes her smile. It’s all about the new girl in town, she won’t let you down.  Now toss some bills & make it rain.

IF I KNEW – A throwback to the doo wop. I feel like I’m watching Back to the Future eating in the diner with McFly in a pin stripe suit with the band in the background. I’m thinking about the breakup, wishing we 17 to start over again. I could give the innocence I had back then… but that was in the past. It’s very Bruno and he pulls these tracks off so effortlessly, like he did Amy Winehouse’s Valerie. 

YOUNG WILD GIRLS – DEMO VERSION – BEAUTIFUL, his voice shines even more and while I love the beat it’s also just the feeling and words, and they stand out more.

GORILLA – DEMO VERSION – Wow, simple love making, stripping away all the bass, the chest banging and the beats, yet, you can still hear and feel it all. 

I absolutely love this album, it’s literally a jukebox with a little bit of everything from ballads, dance tracks & throw backs. It’s not too long or too short, it’s just right, and why I’ve listened to it countless times. It’s fun, upbeat, emotional without being dreary and all about life, love, pain, strippers, sex & raw emotion. If you didn’t love Bruno before, you will now. And have you heard him sing live? Sounds just like the record, if not better. Enjoy!

Much love, CJ

My Oscar Experience

My Oscar experience… aside from the actual movies… b/c I honestly haven’t seen them all (would help), so I’ll comment on what caught my attention. Channing Tatum… & Charlize dancing. Chris Evans. Channing again w/ what’s her name? Brad’s ex, oh my that’s not good. Halle Berry’s cute Versace Bond dress. The great & powerful performances by Shirley Bassey & Jennifer Hudson, both sealed it & received standing O’s. Hugh Jackman, just b/c. Zoe Saldana (love her) & Chris Pine for hottest hosting couple. Anne Hathaway for Lis Mis (cause she deserves it), including her speech… I love it when she said… “Here’s hoping that someday in the not too distant future, the misfortunes of Fantine will only be found in stories, and never more in real life.” She makes me wanna watch Devil Loves Prada… no Meryl does. Adele’s performance of Skyfall… while it wasn’t as impactful in person as her other songs, it’s a hard song to sing & she still did great & snatched the award to boot… but she didn’t get a standing O. :/ Oh well. Why does Harry Potter look kinda cute?! Maybe cause Kristen Stewart looked crack the fk out!? Did Miss Babs just hit the stage? Oh shit, it’s really her, moving jaw & all… she brought back some Memories. Standing O of couse… timeless & classic musicality. Meanwhile, Queen Latifah has come such a long way since Ladies First, and she hasn’t changed who she really is. It’s so great to see her dazzle on that stage. Charlize Theron is so beautiful, and I love that blonde pixie cut on her. And then we ended w/ Quentin Tarantino. I love his movies, but why he always look a hot slop mess? The end!



1. I AM ART – We’re coming hard out the box reminding you to think about it before you hit the stage, cause people know the difference from an artist & a lip syncing model. It’s serving, working and giving you Aviance ARTist! A fresh palette, fierce canvas, and we’re bringing you house. The sounds build into an artistic project called I AM ART. Art is God. God is love. Love is light. Art is light portrayed through colors. Voice being the weapon of choice, 

with a kaleidoscope production, very origami, culture & crayons, serving various shades!

2. SHE’S THAT – I’m feeling the beginnings of an old school tribal house track. I don’t know if I’m coming or going.  But, this isn’t the track asking you for a bump so I’ll save that for later. Is this thing on, hello? Is this recording my voice, live? It’s making me very nervous!

3. IT’S OVAH CAN YOU HANDLE IT? – I’m ready to hit the floor and wondering, ARE YOU READY? I’m bringing it, turning it, and we come you live & direct. We have something very important to bring you. It’s Ovah, can you handle it!? Is anyone walking? I hear echoes of a distant runway that just got served.

4. GAGGING (momma’s dub) – Giving you breath! I can’t catch mine & I feel like I’m gagging. The hi-hat with electro pianos is thumping and expectant. This is the track that reminds me of hanging with my friends in the NYC clubs, watching each other live. “She’s Gagging!!!” We know what it means, taken back by EJ & Coqui saying, “That’s ok”  to the unexpected call by EJ’s mother.

5. THROWBACK – From the start, just the sound makes you feel like you’re preparing for a ball in the 80s. Teasing me with sounds, peppered with eras of old school. Honey let me tell you something, collaborations is just something we do. Now let’s take it back, one’s Costa Rican, one’s Black. It’s not over… it’s OVAH!

6. R.I.F. – What you hear my dear is audio. Don’t get it twisted, it’s only in your head, Rest in Fierce my darling, the sounds are quite alive, not nearly dead. This track is giving you a conjunction with a function, a who, a what & a where. ::turns the page:: Reading Is Fundamental.

7. TRUST – We’re in the jungle giving you tribal drums, live and direct from the forest music express. Trust in us andall shall be well. I could do without the Casio piano sounds but I enjoy the pops. These sounds are all over the place, but I have faith in the ones to come.

8. R U EXPERIENCED? – I’m at the coat check and this is a song I wish I was the floor dancing to. A space invaders experience, out there but underground. And it’s your mission, should you choose to accept it, to merge the 2 into one bump. Come here, let me talk to you for a moment. Are you experienced? Can you handle it? Let me give you a bullet and blow you away!

9. KNOCKOFF – The nerve!  Feeling like a million and showing it off.  Ana Sui, Gucci, Dolce & Gabbana, Donna Karen, Thierry Mugler and Miss Muccia Prada, what, where, how… when?  Your $19 Chanel Knockoff!?  The nerve, miss thing!

10. IT’S DONE – It’s battle time bitches! And while you’re getting ready, I’m already done. You feel ill, I look sickening, you just lost & I just won. Bring it, walk for me! This is one of my favorite tracks. ATL to NYC, EJ, Mother Juan and the rest of the Aviance family, here, there, we’re everywhere! Can you handle it? It’s OVAH, AVI’OUSLY!

11. OYE MARICON – Just when you thought it was quieting down, it’s about to bring it back harder and faster, with a blip, a rolling thump, build up, a bang, a cha cha and a drum! Move out the way bitches, I’m about to give you a Sumba, a Salsa, Meringue & Bachata! Oye Maricon, callate la boca y dame chicaron!! It gives you bass & tribal all the way through, keeps the stamina of a hot Latin man!

12. I AM ART (coqui’s mix) – A great house track to end, the synths build up and rock chords give it a new dimension while the timbales clic

k and clack. A great ending to a terrific compilation, different, unexpected & appreciated!