Nikki 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.
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!
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.
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.
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 NextMovie.com. 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.
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.
Instead of reading the same old boring movie reviews from the same old boring critics, why not watch a fresh new video review from the rock stars and rap gods you know and love? That’s part of MTV’s vision for the launch of NextMovie.com: movie reviews from all your favorite artists. Last month, we hosted a competition to find an awesome OurStage artist to share their thoughts on a new cinematic release. After a month of judging, thirty artists rose to the top of the heap and our very own Nikki Lynette was chosen from the ranks as the winner. Nikki has been tearing it up on OurStage since she joined, winning competitions and expanding her fanbase. With this review, she enjoyed the opportunity to connect with her fans and have some fun at the same time. And now, after much anticipation, Nikki’s review of Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides is up and running. Check it out and let us know what you think!
Recently, MTV launched NextMovie.com”a movie site for the next generation featuring celebrity interviews, movie news and video reviews from rappers and rockers. And naturally, since we have no shortage of talented rhymesayers or rock-and-rollers on OurStage, we got in on the action with the NextMovie Review Competition to offer one lucky rap, hip hop or rock artist a chance to have their own video review posted on the NextMovie site!
Well, a winner has been chosen: Nikki Lynette‘s fierce track Love U Crazy, earned her the prize. This Chi-town native is no stranger to success on OurStage. In fact, Nikki regularly kicks ass and takes names in the urban charts. Love U Crazy is a genre-bending hip-shaker that combines equal parts rock and rap in one tasty alternative hip hop package guaranteed to get you on your feet. If you’re ready to jam out to spiky guitars and sultry vocals check out Love U Crazy below, and keep an eye out for Nikki’s NextMovie review when it airs on OurStage! You can also head on over to nextmovie.com to see Lego versions of summer blockbusters and hear what MC Hammer thought about Thor.
Nikki Lynette has never been one to play it safe. Despite being told she didn’t fit into a genre, Nikki powered through, creating her own blend electro, hip hop, rock and pop. Slap on some fishnets and leather and mix with Nikki’s energy and excitement, and you’ve got a star in the making. So much so that after entering (and coming in second place) in OurStage and New Music Seminar’s Artist On The Verge Competition, MTV caught a whiff came calling with a licensing deal. Go backstage with Nikki below to hear more about how it all came together.
Dubbed the Queen of Englewood by Lupe Fiasco himself, there’s no doubt Nikki Lynette‘s got Chi-town clout. But even Lupe knows that big talent finds its way past city limits. To date, Lynette’s opened for KRS 1, Gym Class Heroes and The Game, played SXSW and CMJ Music Festival and had her songs placed in ads for McDonald’s and Marlboro. Her allure lies in her chameleonic tastes, artfully blended into cool music for fun, cool people. With musical interests as diverse as Pink Floyd and OutKast, the singer/rapper/songwriter/producer leads listeners on a colorblind, genreless dance juggernaut through hip hop, rock and Motown. Loveless is a campy preachfest that leans and bobs to tribal street rhythms. Need a Man is a vintage jitterbug, sung straight and flirty, whereas the electro-grind of Don’t Say No, with its tachycardia beats is more forward-thinking. But it’s Now That I’m Fine that will really get the pulses racing. Hand claps and electric guitar plus Tony Basil’s Hey Mickey equals an insistent, grrrl power anthem that will keep the masses moving. Fans of Missy Elliott, Santigold, even Roger Waters will find something to dig. Long live the Queen.