Two’s Day: Two For Happy

This weekend was a weekend of unspeakable tragedy. The type of tragedy that leaves a lasting impression on your heart and in your mind. The type of tragedy that renders you speechless and momentarily breathless. A catastrophe of such drastic proportion that it’s complicated to see any silver lining, bright side, sunshine, or any hope of healing.

Although it’s not blatantly visible, there is a lesson to be learned in all of this. Beyond the politics and debates about citizens and their rights to own, hoard, carry, conceal, or whatever else they’d like to do with guns, beyond the discussion about the recognition, diagnosis, and cure of mental health issues – there is bigger perspective to gain and bigger questions to answer.

What are you doing to add value to the lives of those around you? What are you doing to add value to your own life? Are you happy? Many people try to place a box around “happy”. They want to give it one definitive definition. They say happiness is only acquired by success and profit. They lead you to believe it’s only attainable through constant pursuit of greatness (and we already discussed how dangerous that can be). Today, I challenge you to define your own happiness. I dare you to track down your happiness and embrace it. I encourage you to take a break from the man-made demand of your profession and focus on the God-ordained peace of your purpose. Recognize that you weren’t created to stress or fear or waste time. You were designed to prosper and to love and to live a happy life.

Even when we are aware of what we were created for, we tend to dilute the strength of revelation with the notion that we have unlimited time. Although we were created to be happy, we were not created to live forever. So while you’re here, you have a choice – be hurried or be happy. What is happy for you? Define it and find it. Even if you’re there for only a minute, make it there before it’s too late. Enjoy what God has placed in front of you. Be present. Be open to new experiences. Be purpose driven. Be happy.

The Foreign Exchange – Happiness

“…good people, good loving, good music in my life – that makes me happy…”

Frankie Beverly and Maze – Happy Feelings

“…these happy feelings…I’ll spread them all over the world”

What’s on your playlist?

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Artist of the Week: Little Brother

With a new album scheduled to hit stores this Tuesday, it’s only fitting that we show love to North Carolina’s own Little Brother. Comprised of rapper/singer/songwriter Phonte, Rapper Big Pooh, and producer 9th Wonder (who is no longer a member of the group), Little Brother is one of the most under-rated collectives in hip hop. Their debut, The Listening, was as close to classic as you can get. Especially from a group of then unknown rappers from the South. Conceptually, it played from top to bottom like a hip hop radio show – WJLR, Justice League Radio. Dope beats. Dope rhymes. What more could ya’ll want?

For their second release, The Minstrel Show (2005), they moved from the radio to the television. This album, released on Atlantic, was their first major label release. Much like on their debut, the Brothers provided us with what most artists, group or solo, had abandoned long ago: a concept. And although it didn’t get the commercial success or respect that it deserved (most great music never does), hardcore LB fans were definitely tuned in to the Show.

Along with their third studio album, The Getback (2007), they have several mixtapes and multiple side projects (including one of my favorites right now – The Foreign Exchange) that are more than worth a listen. Make sure you stop by your local cd store…I mean log on to iTunes…and pick up that new album, Leftback, on Tuesday! In the meantime, enjoy these gems:

The Yo Yo from The Listening

Atari 2600 from an early release of The Listening

Speed from The Listening