STOP in the Name of ArtBLT: Exploring the Motor City

Friends!! We missed y’all so much! Tamika and I took a break away from blogging to handle family matters. In a few short months I have moved twice to 2 states (yep, you read right chile), AND Tamika has moved twice to the same state (LOOOOOONG story)! Needless to say, we have been trying to get ourselves together before bringing you the freshness you deserve. I’ve been traveling a lot lately (mostly for work), and I had the opportunity to visit Detroit….the Motor City…Home of Motown… Take a gander at a few of my travel shots! detroit3 A Birminghamian just HAS to take a picture in Birmingham, Michigan. 😉 detroit2 The Detroit Riverwalk is fascinatingly beautiful! It is near GM’s headquarters. I felt such a cool sense of peace as I walked along the river. Don’t let anyone scare you from visiting Detroit. It is a nice city…you just have to find those little gems. detroit1 To STOP and STAND in the same room where The Temptations, The Supremes, Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye, and the list does go on sang their hearts out was incredible. Visiting the Motown museum is a MUST if you’re visiting Detroit! detroit Along the way I tried some great eats, and found the coolest lil wine joint! But alas, I was so immersed in my experience I forgot to snap pics of the food! What’s your favorite place to travel too?

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Indie Love: George Tandy Jr

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Friends, a belle has been away for a minute. Tamika and I are both going through major changes with moving and such. PLEASE bear with a belle as we get back to some sense of normalcy.

I don’t know if y’all have heard of this cat by the name of George Tandy Jr, who sings this beautiful love song March. No worries, because ya fave belles have you covered. I got word that he was performing at the House of Blues in Dallas, so I did what any other music loving fashionista would do…purchase a ticket!

Tandy perfomed selections from his forthcoming album, The Foundation, which hits the streets tomorrow! You already know who will be on iTunes bright and early! Check out our Instagram to hear Tandy in action honey.

Tandy has the ability to fuse different musical styles together–r&b, jazz, soul, reggae, to create his own unique sound. When I tell y’all this cat is talented I mean it!

All in all, the one hour set was DOPE! Tandy has actual talent and knows how to work a crowd. He took it to the old school by even singing a lil Temptations, My Girl.

To make things better, Tandy is also VERY NICE, which is always a plus. He spelled my name incorrectly when he autographed a picture; once I pointed it out, he apologized ever so sweetly and signed a NEW picture for me.


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Support REAL music friends. Are  there any indie musicians you enjoy? Do tell a belle!

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Atlanta Food & Wine Festival Brings the Fun Out!

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Give a girl booze and good food and she is bound to have a great time! Friends, y’all know that a belle loves some good food and wine. When you couple these things with southern delicacies and a festival, you most certainly have our attention! Unfortunately, Tamika couldn’t make it, but I brought along our new intern, Khalia. We had so much fun at the Atlanta Food & Wine Festival (AF&WF), which brings together happy people, great food and wine.

The AF&WF celebrates southern culture, food, and drink. It is an awesome event to attend to try new foods/spirits you haven’t had before. The festival welcomes other cultural influences such as Indian, Chilean, African, etc. with its various foods and wines. In addition to the tasting tents, there are also culinary experiences, where you can see star chefs and mixologists display their unique talents.

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Held in Midtown, the festival was replete with tasting tents, classes, dinners, AND more! If you’re really into food and wine, then this is the festival for you…right in the heart of Atlanta.

I had the opportunity to try spirits I do not normally drink; this included moonshine, whiskey, and rum. The kind of stuff that puts hair on your chest…haha. Some of a belle’s standout favorites at AF&WF were barbeque chicken with Big Green Egg barbeque sauce, grit frittatas (who knew?!), sea-salt caramel gelato, and an AWESOME salad by Lumiere French Kitchen. Chef Tom Condron knew what he was doing with that salad babyyy!

Have a gander at my Watermelon Lime Patron popsicle…yes Patron! It was a King of Pops popsicle at that! This festival is not froo froo at all because as you can see…cotton candy was there!

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Whisper Creek had this yummy strawberry rye whiskey. I don’t even drink whiskey, so if I say it’s good, please trust my tastebuds.

afwf142Look at us being silly! Coke had this photo machine where we took a variety of cute shots. We got our Top Model on! Coke had this uber cool lounging section where a local musician played some smooth music, and patrons were given Coke floats. Y’all, that Coke float gave me life! It took me back to my childhood when we ate root beer floats at home!

I’d definitely suggest saving for AF&WF because the tickets can get pricey if you want to enjoy the FULL experience like a true VIP! However, the price is definitely worth it. Until next festival friends!

Disclosure: We received tickets to AF&W, but it does not affect a belle’s opinion.

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Let’s Jam: 5th and York’s All In

I remember the first time I heard about 5th and York. We’d just started ArtBLT and a belle was looking for some fresh talent to feature. Ever a fan of jazz music, the sis approached me one day and our convo went like this:

Tamika: You gotta check out this jazz group I found on Twitter.

Me: Really? Are they solid?

Tamika: These cats are tight!

Me: Lemme check out their website.

This was my introduction to 5th and York. The musicians latest album, All In, definitely goes all in. It has a smooth jazz feel that will take you back to drinking lemonade under the shade of a tree. This is not your typical jazz album. The group breaks up the monotony by having dialogue interwoven within the cd, adding a fresh touch to its signature contemporary style. I did regret that the dialogue could be too long at times though, as in “The Casino.” However, 5th and York does a splendid job of merging jazz, rock, and traditional r&b to create a style that’s distinctly their own.

One of my favorite tunes is “Key of G (Ea).” I want you to listen to it and you’ll know exactly what I mean.

If you’re ready to open your ears and explore the world in a smooth sultry musical ride, then check out 5th and York’s All In. You can buy the album on iTunes.

Disclosure: The cd was sent to us for review. It does not affect a belle’s opinion. 

Image via 5th & York