Yellow Gold or Black Gold? The Music of Andy Allo and Esperanza Spalding


Queen’s and King’s need good music to groove to, right? Then choose: would you rather have black or yellow gold? I’ll take both! Check out what these very beautiful sistahs have to say about gold. The lyrics are so sweet. It is good to know that people are still making good music… with their clothes on! Don’t forget to check out their styles. These ladies have so much flava and it doesn’t require any exposed body parts. At the very end of this article make sure you look at my book suggestions. Royalty must read!

YELLOW GOLD by Andy Allo

This is Andy Allo


I discovered Andy last night while looking for some Prince music on Amazon. My latest Prince fetish has me searching all over the Internet for his music! She came up as a suggestion and after listening to several of her songs, I think that she is pure hotness.

BLACK GOLD by Esperanza Spalding featuring Algebra

This is Esperanza Spalding


Esperanza is my sweetheart of jazz. She is uplifting and I am glad to know that she is keeping jazz alive for the younger generations. She is the first woman to accomplish the things that she has on the bass. Sometimes when I hear her music I get chills. Check her out.


Life, love, and wisdom. You are black gold!

Queen for African Essence

P.S. Are you a reader? Then you have to check out QUESTLOVE’S new book: Mo Meta Blues. 


Or Prince’s book: I Would Die 4 U: Why Prince Became an Icon


In love with you and the things that you do. Enjoy your day!


Comments from Readers Were Blocked


I just want to make an announcement about people who have visited and commented on my blog. I really thank you all for visiting my “art space” and making suggestions and just showing so much love. Many of you have sent positive vibrations my way on a regular, but much to my amazement, I wasn’t getting the comment notifications!

Why I am posting this? I hadn’t realized it, but it turns out that wordpress has blocked over 700 comments from users and readers of African Essence. These comments date back to 2012 and they were sent to a folder marked “SPAM” for various reasons. I am saddened that I missed out on so much positive feedback! There are too many comments to weed through, but I did check the most recent one’s from July. I have responded to those comments on various articles which can be found in my archives.

If you ever posted a comment and I did not respond, I apologize. I take this blog very seriously and I hope you come back soon. I have corrected the problem with the SPAM so PLEASE FEEL FREE TO CONTINUE TO COMMENT AND SEND SUGGESTIONS.

Peace, love, life, & wisdom.


It's always love and art.

It’s always love and art.

Nice photo editing by a FB friend…


Nice photo editing by a FB friend...

I appreciate the sponsorship. I like that he made the ankh ring golden. I actually lost this ring during this photoshoot and have not been able to find one like it since. It was a brass ring I got in Nashville, TN at an Afrikan bookstore on Jefferson Avenue.

Life, love, & wisdom.

Queen Duafe for African Essence

Beautiful Elements of Nature


We just had a beautiful hail storm! Probably the most intense I’ve witnessed in a while. My cat was scared and she started crying. What a baby!

Thandiswa and Lira- The Light of My Week


A very wonderful elder of mine introduced me to the lovely music of these South African women:

Thandiswa Mazwai and Lira

Thandiswa has so much energy and humility. She has a highly-attractive spirit.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Lira is so graceful and just all out beautiful. I love her smile!

LiraMake sure you click on the links and pictures to visit their websites and see some of their great performances/videos. The world needs more women like them who are beautiful, stylish, and who respect themselves.

Queen Duafe for African Essence

On the Cover: Ya’ll Know I Love Janelle Monae!


So I was out and I picked up the new Black Hair Fashion Beauty Style August/September 2013 Magazine because Janelle Monae is on the cover. Of course she is sitting lovely in her black and white. I really like her.


I can’t believe she has a new video out and I didn’t know! I always love the creativity, the flare and the boldness of Janelle. I also dig that she has really attractive female energy in her videos and she isn’t afraid to dance crazy. Furthermore, my favorite video from her remains to be Many Moons. I also adore Tightrope and Q.U.E.E.N. Go Janelle!

Dance Apocalyptic by Janelle Monae

Gotta include my Many Moons!

Review of the Black Hair Magazine:

I really think that the editor is cool and I am glad Black Hair got someone that we could relate to! Her name is Keysha Davis. This issue of Black Hair features fearless women who wouldn’t even give a second thought to other peoples’ opinions of them, Keysha quotes. She says that Monae is one of the most brave, creative, and free-spirited artists of her generation. I really dug the interview! It was cool to know that Janelle wrote and produced Erykah Badu’s part in her song Q.U.E.E.N. I like that she was open and honest. I did not know she was only 24, though. I thought she was in her later 20s.

Words that I took away from the interview:

QUESTION: What do you do when you’re not Janelle Monae the artist, and the persona we know you for?

JANELLE’S ANSWER: I love laughing, I love art, I love discussion and stimulating conversation where I’m learning things. I like hanging with people who speak different languages. I am just a sponge for knowledge. I swim in my tuxedo, I walk with monkeys, I kiss tigers, I do lots of different things. I have tea with bumblebees. … sounds like something I would say!

I also like her dedication to expressing herself and her femininity in a respectful manner as opposed to the get naked get rich fast model. She is all about respecting her Queendom and redefining what it means to be a woman. She say’s that she wants young girls with natural hair to know that they can be Cover Girl’s too. What a lady! That is what it’s about- being comfortable with what God gave you! She is super cool. She ended the interview by saying she uses as many natural products as possible like raw Shea butter from Ghana. That’s what we do, right? Gotta love Janelle Monae!

As to the rest of the Aug/Sept issue of Black Hair… it was cool. Black Hair is a nice magazine because it is modern with great photography and many style variations. The images normally look really nice and the women and men are not air brushed to plastic! Definitely realistic photos which oddly is not common in mags today.

They have lots of info on weaves and honestly, it is always hard for me to embrace features focusing on weave because I see women hiding behind false hair and using it as definition rather than adornment. Weave can be beneficial in transitioning processes and to use as decoration from time to time. It should not be our everyday mask. We have to learn to let our own hair down! However, this issue had the TOP AFRO TRENDS. There were only a few in the article, but the pages from the issue that I really liked are: Black Hair.

I am posting these pages just to let you all get an idea of what Black Hair looks like inside. Not too many people know about it, but if I had to choose a “black hair” mag, this is definitely the best. I am hoping that the posting of these pages do not constitute any form of infringement. I do not stand to make a profit and this is in promotion of Black Hair! I want people to try it! (page 44 was my fav!)

Love, life, & wisdom

Queen Duafe for African Essence

P.S. This is a another interview of


UK-Centered Artist Omar celebrated at Luxe in Gordon Square Cleveland


Image representing Skype as depicted in CrunchBase

Image via CrunchBase

Today I was introduced to Omar. I really like the sound of him. I visited a bar on Cleveland’s west side and he was set up to do a video interview on Skype for fans and in promotion of his new album. He was really cool and laid back. The bar played the whole CD and I really dug it. Check it out.


I am looking forward to dissecting this CD. I will probably get it in a few weeks. It sounded so good at the bar! Omar seemed grounded and pure during his interview.

Life, wisdom & love,

Queen Duafe for African Essence