ItsNotYouItsMe Blog: 2018-10-07

Saturday, October 13, 2018

Kohei Takabatake & Morten Nielsen for Vogue Ukraine Man October 2018

"Models Kohei Takabatake and Morten Nielsen star in Boss story captured by fashion photographer Manolo Campion for Vogue Ukraine Man‘s October 2018 edition. In charge of styling was Vena Brykalin, with set design from Daniel Horowitz, production by Six Wolves, and beauty by Eric Polito." -

Max Barczak, Noah Luis Brown & Piero Mendez Model Calvin Klein FW18

"Fashion photographer Willy Vanderperre captured Calvin Klein‘s Fall Winter 2018.19 advertising campaign starring Max Barczak, Noah Luis Brown, and Piero Mendez. Styling is work of Olivier Rizzo, with casting direction from Ashley Brokaw, and beauty by hair stylist Holli Smith, and makeup artist Hannah Murray." -


"Ilyusha, Misha, Nikita, and Artyom, photographed by Putregai Vadim & Ira Condrea and styled by Alexander Antoniu, in exclusive for Fucking Young! Online.

Assistant: Ecaterina Tricaziuc." -

Friday, October 12, 2018

The Number Ones: Aretha Franklin’s “Respect”

In today's Queen of music news:

"Aretha Franklin – “Respect”

HIT #1: June 3, 1967

STAYED AT #1: 2 weeks

"Some great artists are not appreciated in their times. Aretha Franklin wasn’t one of them. People knew that she was incredible.

Aretha Franklin was a chart monster. She was a chart monster ever since the moment, early in 1967, when she released her first Atlantic Records single and remade herself as a hard soul singer. In her lifetime, Franklin had 73 singles that charted on the Billboard Hot 100. For decades, this was the most that any solo female artist had ever managed. On a 2 Chainz song last year, Nicki Minaj rapped, “I broke Aretha record.” Nicki was telling the truth, but Aretha Franklin did not get on there by rapping guest verses on other people’s songs. If you measure it like that, Franklin is still the all-time champ.

And yet Aretha Franklin only got to #1 twice in her career. “Chain Of Fools, “Think,” “(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman,” “Baby I Love You,” “Spanish Harlem” — these were all huge records, top-10 singles, but none of them went all the way. And one of Franklin’s two #1 singles was “I Knew You Were Waiting (For Me),” a 1987 duet with George Michael. It almost doesn’t count. The other Aretha Franklin #1, however, is the right song. If you had to boil Aretha Franklin’s power and craft and importance down to one song, “Respect” would be that song.

Now: “Respect” isn’t my favorite Aretha Franklin song. It’s not even my favorite song from the first album that she released on Atlantic; that would be “I Never Loved A Man (The Way I Love You),” that album’s title track. (It was also Franklin’s first Atlantic single and her first top-10 hit.) “Respect” is a song that I’ve probably heard a thousand times in my life, a song that’s hard to hear with fresh ears. And yet it is an undeniable destroyer, a song of historic proportions.

“Respect” started out its life as an Otis Redding song. Redding wrote the song for the singer Speedo Sims in 1965, but Sims couldn’t get it right, so Redding took it for himself. It’s a raw and fiery song, a song about a man needing respect from his significant other when he gets home from work. He’s been out working all day, suffering whatever indignities a working black man would be made to suffer in 1965. He wants to be good to the woman in his life however he can. He promises, for instance, to give her all his money. But he also tells her that he needs a place where he can feel important. It’s a plea.

Redding’s version of “Respect” is a really good song, a great example of hard and unadorned mid-’60s soul. It was also a hugely important song for Redding — only the second single of his that crossed over to the top 40 of the pop charts. And yet Franklin’s version of the song immediately and totally eclipsed his own. He knew it, too. At the Monterey Pop Festival, two weeks after Franklin’s version of “Respect” hit #1, Redding introduced “Respect” as “a song that a girl took away from me… This girl, she just took this song!”

Franklin had been covering “Respect” in her live shows ever since Redding had released it. And when she recorded it, she radically made it over. In her hands, it’s a completely different song. The parts of the song that everyone remembers — the spelling of the title, the “sock it to me” — are hers. More than that, though, she destroyed and rebuilt the song just by being the one to sing it. Because, in the ’60s, there was one segment of society given less respect than black men, and that was black women.

But before we get into the resonance of Franklin’s “Respect,” it’s worth mentioning that it’s a fucking amazing piece of music, even divorced from its context. The groove is fast and nasty. Other than the King Curtis saxophone solo on the bridge (repurposed from Sam & Dave’s “When Something Is Wrong With My Baby,” which Curtis had recorded the night before), every instrument on the song, including Franklin’s own piano, is part of the rhythm section. It’s a loose but precise groove, and Franklin falls right into it.

As a singer, Franklin starts the song at a 10 — “what you want!” — and she stays there throughout. She never dips. Franklin wasn’t controlled and modulated like Diana Ross or like any of the white pop singers who were dominating in 1967. She was an overwhelming force, drawing on her experience in the church and putting that same passion into demanding what she needed. There’s no real structure to “Respect,” no verse-chorus-verse. Instead, it’s built as a series of events, all of them welded to that groove. Franklin makes all of them sound like explosions.

Franklin was only 25 when she recorded “Respect,” but she’d already lived a life. She’d been a child gospel prodigy. She’d been a failed mainstream pop crooner. She’d become a mother three times over. She was almost finished with her tempestuous, abusive first marriage. And when she sang “Respect,” anyone listening could tell that she knew exactly what she was singing.

If Otis Redding’s “Respect” was a plea, Aretha Franklin’s “Respect” is a demand. It’s forceful, heavy, ferocious: “I’m about to give you all my money / All I’m asking in return, honey / Is to give me my propers when you get home.” And in singing about her own money, she neatly inverts the gendered economic dynamic of the original. She’s the one making the money, so she says what the fuck is up.

“Respect,” of course, hit the world when the Civil Rights struggle was near its peak and when the women’s liberation movement was just emerging. It worked as an anthem for both. On the paper, the lyrics are just about a relationship, not about the changing tides of history. And yet that history is there. People picked up on it. It was the perfect song, from the perfect person, at the perfect time. It’s already outlived Aretha Franklin. It’ll outlive the rest of us, too.

GRADE: 10/10

BONUS BEATS: Here’s Kool Moe Dee interpolating “Respect” and using it to warn about prison rape on his 1987 single “No Respect”:

BONUS BONUS BEATS: Here’s the only non-Aretha “Respect” cover I really like, the diva-house version from the New Jersey singer Adeva that was a UK hit in 1989:." -

CHVRCHES Sturt Their Music Magic On 'Ellen'

Seeing that we've personally worked and catered at one time to Scottish synth-pop group CHVRCHES, it is our personal joy to see them finally make their daytime TV debut after some 3 years of being together.

 With a bright bold shiny and warm performance of their current underground smash single"Miracle" . The Ellen Degeneres Show welcomed the dazzling frontwoman Lauren Mayberry and the boys as they ripped through in a blue-dream neon backdrop complete with her beautifully ginormous patterned sequined dress.

Carrying  a transcendent yet simple enigmatic energy to the stage, miss Mayberry moodily sang "I need you to know I'm not asking for a miracle/But if love is enough, could you let it show."

"Miracle" is our favorite tune off the band's 2018 studio album "Love Is Dead."

And on a sidenote carebears, pss, come a little closer because we have an exclsuive ItsNotYouItSmE trivia tale to tell! Some people, if you can believe it, are even better in real life. This band is one of those rare zebras. In life, you can talk the talk but very few walk the walk. Creative, kind, and authentically euphoric.

Dig out CHVRCHES' stellar performance on Ellen right below.

Shirley Manson on the Groundbreaking 1999 Grammys: 'Nonconformist Women Were Getting a Moment'

Ooh leave it up to your dreams or at least leave it up to alternative musique queen Shirley Manson to spill the tea with a spoonful of heavy truth!

"I remember that day. I walked past Madonna, and she grabbed my arm. I turned around, and she went, “I think you’re amazing.” I nearly fell on top of her in shock. Then I was ushered to my seat next to Lauryn Hill, and of course, I’m trembling at her genius. She sat there very kind of regally, and she had a small Bible in her lap. I was like, “Wow, I’m not fucking with that!” Just sort of stayed in my own mad fear. I remember meeting Bono -- there’s a photograph of us together, and I literally look like I’m in the midst of an orgasm. [Laughs.]

To be in that category with those huge hitters seemed really ludicrous to us. [Manson was nominated with her band, Garbage.] When you come from outsider spaces and infiltrate the mainstream, there’s a gleefulness to that. Like, “Wow, did we just come in on the perfect Trojan horse?” From the mid-’90s onward, I had a sense that progressive-thinking, nonconformist women, for the first time ever, were getting a moment in the sun. In that moment, it really felt like this was a natural evolution, and that was a glorious thing. I remember thinking, “Wow, things really are changing.”

It never occurred to me that that progress would find itself blunted really suddenly. I felt rage [at Neil Portnow’s comment after the 2018 ceremony that women in music needed to “step up”], but I also felt grateful, in a funny way, that he revealed his colors so perfectly to the world -- so ignorant and unaware of his own white male privilege that he stepped into the fire without even knowing it. Women have to work harder than any of their male counterparts, and black women and women of color have to work even harder. This kind of misogyny, sexism and racism goes on all over the globe, and it has to stop.

I don’t mean to be rude, but the Grammys really are irrelevant to me. I do care, however, about female representation and opportunity in the industry. I love SZA, Kelsey Lu, Fuck U Pay Us and Mereba -- her song “Black Truck” is beautiful. I saw Natalia Lafourcade play in Mexico City recently, and she absolutely fucking blew me away.

Across the board, I would like to see more female-identified artists who are challenging the patriarchy and systems and culture -- not just the all-pleasing dancing and smiling white female pop star. Mostly, though, I’d like to see more [support for] black female-identifying artists and female-identifying artists of color. And start employing female engineers, producers and mixers! We have to change the way young women see opportunities in those fields. This is on all of us to make changes. It’s time.

As told to Jeanne Fury." -

Garbage's iconic "I think I'm Paranoid" + "No Horse" performances with a stellar interview with Shirley!

Bill Cunningham. The Man. The Legend

The forever adored fashion photographer, and longtime fixture of both street life and society events in New York, nabs a second documentary tribute in "Mark Bozek’s feature, narrated by Sarah Jessica Parker."

"The death of Bill Cunningham in 2016 marked the end of an era with the disappearance of his candid snapshots from the "On the Street" and "Evening Hours" Sunday columns in The New York Times. The self-effacing fashion historian's monastic dedication to his work, along with the unbridled joy he drew from it, were celebrated in Richard Press' gorgeous 2011 doc Bill Cunningham New York. First-time director Mark Bozek now takes an expansive view of the subject in The Times of Bill Cunningham, a captivating portrait built around a previously unseen interview he shot with the photographer in 1994.

Does this new film shine much fresh light on a life already so affectionately examined in the earlier close-up? Aside from the gratuitous dissing of the Press documentary — when Sarah Jessica Parker reads Bozek's scripted narration, making the unverifiable claim that the 2011 film's success and the public recognition it brought Cunningham made him uncomfortable — perhaps not. But if you have a subject as delightful and forthcoming as the self-invented shutterbug, not to mention decades' worth of fabulous footage and photographic records of high and low fashion, you really can't have too much of a good thing.

Bozek, whose background is in fashion marketing, television production and 20-plus years as a QVC exec (he was the basis of the Bradley Cooper character in David O. Russell's Joy), began work on the film the day Cunningham died, aged 87. He dug out the long-lost video interview, which had been planned as a quick 10-minute chat but ended up a life-spanning reflection that continued until the tape ran out. During production on the doc, Bozek scored access to Cunningham's vast photo archives covering six decades, including a wealth of previously unpublished material from the pre-New York Times years.

For someone inherently shy and unfailingly modest about his achievements, Cunningham is a brilliant interview subject. His words are buoyed by the infectious enthusiasm, the sense of gratitude even, that he shares about having been able to carve out a significant career doing something he loves. "A luxury," he calls it, bringing an exciting sense of discovery to each new day on the job. And he was always on the job. Parked on his favorite corner of 57th Street and Fifth Avenue, or whizzing about New York in his customary uniform of a blue French sanitation workers' jacket on a series of 25 bicycles in as many years — "The cheaper the better. They're only gonna steal it!" — he was never without his camera.

With prompts from Cunningham at every step, Bozek guides us through the subject's life from his conservative Boston Irish-Catholic upbringing to his arrival at 19 in New York, where he worked in advertising at the chic department store Bonwit Teller. Having fooled around making hats since he was 10, Cunningham began sidelining as a milliner, fashioning fantasy headgear that was much in demand during the explosion of postwar fetes and costume balls. But Bonwits fired him when they learned that his attention-getting creations weren't being sold in their stores.

It's the chronicle of this period in particular that makes Cunningham's career such a wonderfully New York-centric story — of a creative artist propelled by drive, resourcefulness and fortuitous connections, though seemingly not by the usual fundamental quality of guile. He secured himself a small apartment to use as a studio, rent free in exchange for janitorial duties, earning a modest income delivering lunches on Madison Ave. and working nights at a Howard Johnson's.

He was drafted during the Korean War and stationed in France, where he attended the Paris fashion shows for the first time while also selling his hats to major designers like Schiaparelli. Back in New York, he started working for the influential couture salon Chez Ninon, where his association with future First Lady Jacqueline Bouvier began." -

Anuar Layon Spring/Summer 2019

"Anuar Layon unveiled his collaboration with The Simpsons for Spring/Summer 2019, during Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Mexico." -

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