Denise Johnson, Soulful Singer For Primal Scream, Has Died

denise johnson

Tributes are pouring in on social media for Manchester-born singer Denise Johnson, who has died at the age of 56. The news of Johnson’s passing was announced on Twitter. The cause of death is not known yet.

Johnson made an indelible mark in music by way of her vocals on Primal Scream’s classic 1991 album, Screamadelica. She was the featured vocalist on the group’s breakthrough single “Come Together.”

Her body of work includes recording with A Certain Ration, Fifth of Heaven and The Joy as well as solo releases by New Order‘s Bernard Sumner and The Stone Roses’ Ian Brown.

Johnson began her career in gospel music and was later discovered by Frankie Beverly. She went on to perform with Maze during a tour of England in the late ’80s.

This is a breaking story and will be updated.

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Producer Patrick Holland Clarifies Project Pablo Artist Name Change & Apologizes ‘For the Harm That I’ve Caused’

producer patrick holland

Canadian deep house DJ/producer Patrick Holland has issued a statement clarifying why he stopped using his former artist name Pablo Project in January.

In a post to Facebook and Twitter, Holland wrote,

In January I retired the Project Pablo moniker, and shifted to my given name, Patrick Holland. While I mentioned I’d done so to be more personable in my artistic practice, I omitted the fact that members of the Latinx community had reached out to me publicly and privately, to express their discomfort towards my moniker and educate me on why using the name “Pablo” is harmful and appropriative as a white, non-Latinx, non-spanish-speaking person.

Holland went on to write that he has “…contributed to white supremacy and consistently benefit from my white privilege; my ego has blocked me from recognizing this. Though I never intended to offend or misrepresent marginalized people with my previous moniker, the hard truth is that I did, and therefore my intention is irrelevant. I apologize for the harm that I’ve caused.”

Holland’s statement comes two days after DJ/producer Marea Stamper (a.k.a. The Black Madonna) changed her artist name to The Blessed Madonna after mounting pressure that included an online petition.

Image via Facebook

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The Black Madonna Changes Artist Name to The Blessed Madonna

TheBlackMadonna

DJ/producer Marea Stamper — better known as The Black Madonna — has changed her professional name to The Blessed Madonna.

The decision comes after an online petition called The Black Madonna: It’s Time to Change the Name was launched by Monty Luke, asking Stamper to change her alias.

Wrote Luke on the petition page,

“On June 14 of this year, I emailed Marea Stamper, in an effort to open a dialogue about the possibility of her moving away from using her DJ alias, The Black Madonna. This name, “The Black Madonna,” holds significance for catholics around the world, but especially so for black catholics in the US, Caribbean and Latin America. In addition, Detroit’s Shrine of the Black Madonna has been an important cultural figure to many interested in the idea of Black feminism and self-determination for the past 50 years. Religious connotations aside though, it should be abundantly clear that in 2020, a white woman calling herself ‘black’ is highly problematic. I explained these things in my message and concluded the email with some practical suggestions on how the nickname/alias transition could take place.”

Taking to Instagram today, Stamper wrote,

“I have always been transparent about my faith because I felt a responsibility to be clear about who I was and who I was not. The name was a reflection of my family’s lifelong and profound Catholic devotion to a specific kind of European icon of the Virgin Mary which is dark in hue. People who shared that devotion loved the name, but in retrospect I should have listened harder to other perspectives.

But now I hear loud and clear. My artist name has been a point of controversy, confusion, pain and frustration that distracts from things that are a thousand times more important than any single word in that name. We’re living in extraordinary times and this is a very small part of a much bigger conversation, but we all have a responsibility to try and affect positive change in any way we can. I want you to be able to feel confident in the person I am and what I stand for.

Thank you for listening. Stay blessed.

-Love Marea
PS: If you read this far, arrest the cops that murdered Breonna Taylor in my hometown of Louisville, Kentucky: Jonathan Mattingly, Brett Hankison, Myles Cosgrove.

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Friends, I have changed my name to The Blessed Madonna. I have always been transparent about my faith because I felt a responsibility to be clear about who I was and who I was not. The name was a reflection of my family’s lifelong and profound Catholic devotion to a specific kind of European icon of the Virgin Mary which is dark in hue. People who shared that devotion loved the name, but in retrospect I should have listened harder to other perspectives. But now I hear loud and clear. My artist name has been a point of controversy, confusion, pain and frustration that distracts from things that are a thousand times more important than any single word in that name. We're living in extraordinary times and this is a very small part of a much bigger conversation, but we all have a responsibility to try and affect positive change in any way we can. I want you to be able to feel confident in the person I am and what I stand for. Thank you for listening. Stay blessed. -Love Marea PS: If you read this far, arrest the cops that murdered Breonna Taylor in my hometown of Louisville, Kentucky: Jonathan Mattingly, Brett Hankison, Myles Cosgrove.

A post shared by The Blessed Madonna (@blackmadonnachi) on

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Native Instruments Releases Free Sound Pack to Benefit Charities Supporting Musicians

Community-Drive-Sia-Native-Instruments-Free-SamplePack

The COVID-19 pandemic has hit the music world hard. Clubs are closed. Festivals and tours are canceled. Uncertainty looms about how and when musicians can get back to work.

To help musicians during this difficult time, Native Instruments has launched Community Drive, a free sound pack featuring over 200 samples, 67 loops, 35 kits and 58 presets created with the help of 14 artists from varying genres: Sia (pictured above), Take A Daytrip’s No Idle Crew, Just Blaze, Richard Devine, Miquela, DJ Dahi, BT, Philomene Tsongui, Junkie XL, Georgia Anne Muldrow, Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith, Peaches, Laurel Halo and Kimbra.

“I wanted to take part and give and support all the artists I’ve worked with, that I’ve collaborated with, that I’m inspired by, that I love, who are struggling right now,” says Peaches of her involvement. “So I made presets for Massive and Monark, and they’re dark and they’re nasty and I love them. I also learned a lot, so that’s really cool! So, check ’em out, donate as much as you can so we can get back to making inspiring, creative music, and fighting the good fight.”

While there is no charge for the sample pack, users who can see their way clear to donate a few bucks are encouraged to contribute to a GoFundMe supporting several organizations supporting musicians during the pandemic: The MusiCares Covid-19 Relief Fund (USA), Musicians Without Borders (NL), Keychange (EU), Black Trans Femmes in the Arts (USA), KUUMBA In Motion (USA), In Place Of War (UK) and Heart N Soul (UK).

Native Instruments have already donated €100,000. More info is available here.

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