ComplexCon excels in first year
Inaugural event brings together art, fashion, music, food and education
#ComplexCon is a real life twitter
— YoungKing (@Malique4k) November 7, 2016
When Pharrell Williams and Complex announced in May that they were launching ComplexCon, nobody was really sure what to expect. Of course, the superproducer and media site both hold separate and important places in society, but with the massive expansion of “cons” (conferences) in the past 10 years in other realms of culture, who knew what to expect. Done in conjunction with Williams‘ creative outlet “i am OTHER,” the two-day event in Long Beach, California, from all appearances, appeared to be a rousing success. They did it by sticking to their strengths in creating what Marc Ecko called an “intellectual discovery event,”described as Art Basel meets Bonnaroo.
Snoop Dogg headlined in his hometown, Skrillex performed and Kid Cudi made a triumphant return to the stage after checking himself into a mental health treatment facility and dealing with Drake’s low blows. The hypebeasts were out in full force to support their patron media saints’ inaugural affair.
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And there were sneakers upon sneakers upon sneakers. Speaking of Long Beach, their new prince Vince Staples also stopped in to do some shopping for kicks while he was there. Note the plastic-wrapped sneaks, which is just perfect.
It wasn’t all just fresh fashion and banger performances, the panels included a discussion about the future of our schools (which featured Pusha T and Jesse Williams) as well as a talk about the growing business of legal marijuana (featuring, unsurprisingly, Wiz Khalifa and Action Bronson, among others). WWE wasn’t left out, either. The ever-present generation gap in rap was up for debate, too.
Overall, this event was all over the TL with the aforementioned events, art installations, #MannequinChallenge feats and otherwise tremendous fanperson moments. With an historic election coming up Tuesday, it was the perfect antidote to the craziness of campaign season.
Daily Dose: 11/4/16
Sorry, folks. You can’t bet on the election
10:30 AMHey, don’t forget. 4:30 p.m. EST today, Domonique Foxworth and I will be talking trash on ESPN2 with Papi as co-hosts of Highly Questionable. I’m expecting a fun ride, plus I got to go to the beach this morning, so I’m happy.
A sex scandal has roiled Oakland, California’s police department over the past few months. The short version is that a multitude of officers were sexually exploiting a teenage prostitute and most certainly using their positions with the force as part of said criminal activity. One officer killed himself last year after revealing his involvement with the girl. As the story goes, officers were basically trading undercover bust info for sex, among other things. ABC News reports that California prosecutors are expected to announce results of their probe Friday.
It’s been a rough year for Samsung. First, the company’s Galaxy 7 phone was recalled en masse because it was simply blowing up for no apparent reason, which is pretty much the scariest possible proposition for any handheld device, save it sucking your soul from the inside out while you use it, which it arguably may be doing anyway. That aside, Samsung is recalling nearly 3 million washing machines, and I’ll bet you can guess why. Yes, they’re exploding. These stories of the tops blowing clean off these machines are actually pretty scary.
Most people presume that you can bet on anything in Vegas. Alas, that’s not true. You can bet on sports of all types. You want to lay down some cash on a sporting event? Sure. But all those crazy prop bets you hear about regarding all sorts of wild events aren’t really real anymore. Which is too bad. It seems like betting on the presidential race would be a great way for sportsbooks to make cash. And strangely, somehow, important to our democracy. FiveThirtyEight’s David McIntire explains why sports are the only things moving lines in Nevada.
There are all sorts of theories as to why ratings are down in the NFL. There are people who legit believe that Colin Kaepernick of all people is somehow turning viewers away because of his kneeling protest (something that was never on TV before, BTW, so why people would miss it makes no sense). Others think that Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton are sucking up all the airspace. Others say that too many games are to blame. But Seattle Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman has a more basic theory. The league ain’t fun and, thus, the games don’t entertain.
Coffee Break: Hamilton’s soundtrack went double platinum for the Broadway musical, and with Lin-Manuel Miranda stepping away from the production, there’s now room for him to do a lot more with the product. One such thing is a new mixtape based on the play, WHICH LOOKS FIRE.
Snack Time: Apparently, the fallout from that Beyoncé appearance on the CMAs went even more poorly than we thought. Turns out that they ended up scrubbing a whole lot of her from the show’s website as a result. What a mess.
Dessert: Tinashe dropped a new mixtape for your weekend. Check it out after you pick apples with bae.
Daily Dose: 11/3/16
Beyoncé shuts down the CMAs with the Dixie Chicks
2:00 PMWhat are you up to Friday afternoon? Nothing? Great. Then tune in to ESPN2 at 4:30 p.m. EST. Domonique Foxworth and I will be hosting Highly Questionable tomorrow. Yes, Papi will be there, too. Tune in!
When a former Ku Klux Klan Grand Wizard runs for office in 2016, problems will arise when he speaks in public. That’s exactly what went down Wednesday night in New Orleans where David Duke showed up at Dillard University for a Senate debate. Mind you, it’s an HBCU. The protests turned quasi-violent, with demonstrators trying to push their way into the event hall past police. Why? Because the broadcaster decided that having people in the crowd at all was a bad idea. It didn’t go well for Duke, to say the least. ABC News reports on the bizarre night in Louisiana.
Don’t ever try to tell me that the Dixie Chicks don’t keep it real. Remember back when lead singer Natalie Maines had the guts to stand onstage and tell the country music world in 2003 that then-President George W. Bush invading Iraq was a terrible idea? Well, it got the group blackballed from the industry to an extent. So, on Wednesday night, when they were invited to sing Daddy Lessons with Beyoncé at the 50th anniversary of the Country Music Awards, people lost their minds. Lucky for you, Beyoncé dropped a CDQ on SoundCloud of the collaboration. ABC News details the fun.
Dave Chappelle once told a very funny joke about voting. The basic premise was that white guys will tell you anything about their personal lives, up to and including lewd acts, but will never reveal who they plan on supporting on the ballot. So, when you hear all these people talking about how undecided they are, it’s really just a dodge to see what someone else is going to say and basically deflect. Point is, in this presidential race in particular, most people have known who they plan to vote for. FiveThirtyEight’s Dan Hopkins explains that those choices haven’t changed.
Josh Huff is a wide receiver for the Eagles. Not exactly a star, he’s not the kind of player you care about a lot unless you have him in a fantasy league or root for his team. He was pulled over this week with a gun in his car. Alas, the gun is licensed in Texas, where he’s from, not New Jersey, where he lives. It’s been a marginal distraction for the team this week, but in explaining his situation, Huff made a rather interesting observation. He basically said, if you think most athletes don’t carry guns, you’re wrong. Then he took a swipe at former NBA star Gilbert Arenas. ESPN reports.
Coffee Break: If you haven’t caught up on all of FX’s Atlanta, you absolutely need to, fam. I can’t even explain how much I love this program. The writing, the characters, the somewhat faux reality in the context of surrealism, the dialogue, all of it. But perhaps most important is the music. The finale ends on a legitimately perfect note. Watch it.
Snack Time: Some people have a hard time understanding how a large social media presence can lead directly to making money for individuals. Well, if Instagram develops its shopping feature the way it wants, you’ll get it then.
Dessert: If you smoke e-cigarettes, you might want to be careful. They can basically explode at any time, fam.
Daily Dose: 11/2/16
Two police officers ambushed and killed in Des Moines, Iowa
12:45 PMWe’ve got some fresh content for the streets from the desk here today. First, we got our first podcast episode off from the new studio here, and secondly another installment of Locker Room Lawyer. Stay for the outtakes, kiddos.
An ambush attack on police has left two officers dead in Iowa. For those of you thinking that this is somehow related to angry black folks deciding to take their anger out of law enforcement, pump the brakes. The suspect that officials are looking for is named Scott Michael Greene, who also apparently once decided that flying a Confederate flag and causing a scene at a high school football game was a cool thing to do. ABC News has the latest details on the incident.
People in this world identify themselves many different ways. There are heterosexuals, homosexuals, transsexuals, the list goes on. Until this morning, however, I had never heard the term “ecosexuals.” But apparently it’s a growing trend in which people basically identify their sexuality as something more closely related to their connection with the earth, than, say, another human being. There’s also a healthy dose of doomsday alert involved with many who feel this way. VICE‘s Neil McArthur looks at how ecosexuality may actually save the planet.
We’re less than a week away. Many people have voted early, as in tens of millions of people, but others are still gritting their teeth, waiting for what happens next Tuesday. The political ads are heating up, if you haven’t turned on your television recently. Somehow, and we’ll just chalk this one up to male privilege, there are people who believe that Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump is more honest than Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton, which … OK. Anyway, the gang at FiveThirtyEight has a new election podcast out. Tune in here.
LeBron James is already winning the psychological battle over the Golden State Warriors. Since the world won’t let the Warriors forget that they blew a 3-1 lead in last year’s NBA Finals, The King played along as well during his Halloween party. Come on, it was funny, no big deal, right? Wrong. The media has been asking players in The Bay about it since it happened, and many of them are NOT amused. I feel like this is the wrong tack. If you admit that this bothers you, you’ve already lost. ESPN’s Chris Haynes reports.
Coffee Break: Bruno Mars is the biggest pop star this world has right now. If you couldn’t tell on his latest Saturday Night Live appearance, my man is on another level. His live shows are off the charts, his music is dope and he’s finally embracing his star persona as a legit part of his presentation, which is awesome. Read this feature on him.
Snack Time: A casino in Queens, New York, is about to have the worst karma in the world after what they did to one woman. A machine told her she won $43 million. They basically just said, nah, and gave her a steak dinner. Seriously.
Dessert: You didn’t know that you needed a Sade and MF Doom mashup tape, but you did. You’re welcome.