Nikki Lynette, “Praying To A God I Don’t Believe In”

nikki lynetteNikki Lynette does not shy away from the hard questions. From her substantial body of work to her Twitter feed to her occasional newspaper opinion columns, you’ll find the Chicago artist challenging conventional wisdom and taking on the trolls who can’t handle it. Her newest track, “Praying To A God I Don’t Believe In” (below), does not deviate from the theme, and she expresses the profound sense of doubt experienced to some degree by everyone but the most unquestioningly faithful. Lynette doesn’t waffle much in gray areas, though. As the title indicates, she comes down pretty definitively on the side of disbelief.

And all the king’s horses and all the king’s men / couldn’t put my faith back downloadtogether again / Now that’s dark / But I don’t see no light / And if there’s wrong I don’t see no right.

But of course there’s doubt in the doubt, because in the end, she’s still praying. No atheists in foxholes, as they say. Talking about this dichotomy, and the tension within her own doubt, she wrote, “For me, the idea of God I was raised with is something that is ‘#GoneButNot’ but it’s something I never spoke about until now.” The hashtag #GoneButNot is related to a larger project that this song is a part of.

More like this:
New Track From Nikki Lynette: “Move The World”
Nikki Lynette’s Excellent Kmart Spot

New Track From Nikki Lynette: “Move The World”

nikki lynette
The amazing, multi-talented Nikki Lynette has just released a new track via Soundcloud. It’s called “Move The World,” and it’s a deeply-textured, R&B-flavored song that leaves enough room to showcase Lynette’s emotive lead vocal over a multi-layered groove. Every new release from Nikki Lynette is an artistic leap. It’s kind of amazing to see. Listen here:

More like this:
Nikki Lynette’s Excellent Kmart Spot
Rapper’s Delight: Hip Hop Girls


Nikki Lynette's Excellent Kmart Spot

nikki lynetteNikki Lynette is awesome. She’s a crazy talented artist, but also startlingly honest and often hilarious. We highly recommend following her on Facebook and Twitter, as her content there is all killer, no filler (or filter). It was from those sources that we learned of her appearance in a new national commercial for Kmart.

If you’re like us, when you first hear the concept, “rapping lunchladies in a commercial for Kmart,” you imagine the cringe-worthy worst. Instead, it’s incredibly well-done and very funny. Never doubt a creative team savvy enough to include Nikki Lynette.

In addition, Lynette is a very good writer of prose and frequently contributes to Chicago Now, as she did with this piece discussing the new commercial. Very worth the read, and typically insightful, as she connects this opportunity to the options now available to artists:

So what I will do is remind my fellow indie artists that it’s a new day in the entertainment industry. More and more opportunities are available for us now so we don’t have to be so limited.  Just change your perspective. From where I’m sitting, things are looking pretty good to me.

Her new album, Respect My Disrespect, is due in the coming months.

More like this:
Backstage With Nikki Lynette
Nikki Lynette Reviews The New ˜Pirates’ Movie On MTV’s
Hey Nikki

Is Rihanna Getting Millions For Flicking A Light Switch?

The British tabloids are abuzz today with word that pop starlet Rihanna would be receiving a £5 million, or over $8 million USD, pay day for turning on the lights.

Now these aren’t ordinary lights. It’s not as though the Barbadian singer is getting paid every time she flicks the lights off when she leaves a room! Though it begs the question what kind of residuals dimmer switches bring in.

No, RiRi is getting the big bucks to turn on the holiday lights at Westfield Stratford City, a shopping complex in East London and one of the largest such complexes in the European Union. Granted, she’s also performing a concert as part of the lighting ceremony, but who cares about that!


Members Only: Making Music Licensing Easy

Over the last two weeks, we’ve given you a little overview of all the benefits OurStage’s Premium Artist Membership has to offer artists. One of the tastiest items on the menu is OurStage’s music licensing platform. While dealing with licensing fees, company politics, and publishing jargon may induce headaches for some people, we’ve put our team through a rigorous course load so that they know the best ways to get music licensed.

We also have the chops to walk musicians through all the steps of music licensing so no one is overwhelmed or freaked out. Here are some highlights:

  • Finding a Music Supervisor – We know who they are and where to find them.
  • Negotiating the Licensing Fee – We do the dirty work when it comes to the best deal for Master and Sync Licenses.
  • Understanding Royalties – We figure out all the little details to make sure payements are collected and distributed.
  • Closing the Deal – Artists don’t necessarily have time to chase down all the writers, producers, banjo players on every song. Decisions are made quickly in the licensing world, and we’re very thorough.

Now we understand that four bullet points does not a licensing deal make. And there are plenty of nuances to the biz that are complicated and confusing. So OurStage is also working to educate our community of artists. Whether we’re helping artists license their music or not, its important to us that they have the knowledge to protect and share their work effectively. That’s why we’re conducting Music Licensing Without All The Noise, a webinar featuring pros like OurStage’s Director of Community and Content, the VP of Digital Content at Pollack Media and OurStage’s own licensing success story Nikki Lynnette, who will help you cut through the chaos.

With such a talented community of musicians on OurStage, its easy to see why music supervisors and production companies are so quick to enlist OurStage Artists for their projects. Just listen to the great tracks OurStage has helped place in television and commercials.

Rapper's Delight: Hip Hop Girls

Women have played a critical role in the evolution of hip hop; Queen Latifah, Lil’ Kim, Missy Elliott, Lauryn Hill and Nicki Minaj, to name a few, have all left distinguishable marks. In 2008, the Hip Hop Culture Center in Harlem recognized their importance with its first annual tribute event called “The Impact of Women in Hip Hop”. Our very own fast-growing pool of female talent, living in the Hip Hop Channels on OurStage, also deserves some love, and we thought that featuring a playlist with a few of them was apropos.

Nikki Lynette

One prime example is Nikki Lynette, who won our “NextMovie Review” competition just weeks ago with her upbeat, genre defying dance jam “Love U Crazy.” Check out her review of the new Pirates of the Caribbean movie for MTV’s And that’s not her first big moment on OurStage; Nikki was a finalist in OurStage and New Music Seminar’s “Artist on the Verge” competition last year. “I was competing against all male rock bands, she recalls, and I still managed to come in 2nd. Black girls know how to rock, too!” She’s lingered in the Top 100 of our Best of Urban charts for nine weeks this year, too, peaking at 11.

Another exciting artist to follow is @Ibtunes. This Houston sensation has opened for Drake, J. Cole and Wale and was featured as the Unsigned Band of the Month in this past March’s edition of High Times Magazine. She’s also been doing very well on OurStage this year; take a minute to check out some of her mixtapes here. I mean, c’mon, they’re free!


The Lyrical Maze is another one to keep your eye on. Given her childhood interest in writing and poetry, TLM is aptly named. Her confidence on the mic is not surprising either”she’s been competing in and winning talent contests since she was thirteen. More recently, she’s transferred these skills into live performances and even a headlining slot at the NWO Word Warriors Tour. This interview with Female First sheds some more light on the person behind the music.

The Lyrical Maze

Tracks by these women, along with other female artists, are included in the player below. We’re proud of their achievements, and we’re sure there’s something here for everyone. Do any of these tracks really stand out to you? Write us a comment and tell us why.