This was the scene outside of M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore, Maryland. The Baltimore Ravens offered fans to exchange their Ray Rice jerseys for another player’s jersey. The exchange was held today and will continue tomorrow. Fans lined up to return the jersey of the once well regarded former Ravens running back. There were still some rumblings from other fans stating that those participating in the exchange aren’t true fans and they are turning their backs on Rice.
You can’t dictate people’s moral directions in life. If fans wanted to return their jerseys because they felt what Rice did was wrong, that’s their given right. I’m sure those that were speaking out against the exchange, did things in their life that they wanted to be forgiven for. I’m sure tomorrow that there will be an even larger number of fans that will be in line.
While the jersey exchange was going on, ESPN Outside The Lines reported that the Ravens organization knew about the incident between Ray Rice and his wife Janay, but also had a hand in trying to cover it up. The OTL report details the events leading up to the elevator incident to the events after. In regards to this incident, there’s a cast of characters including Ravens owner Steve Bisciotti, president Dick Cass, general manager Ozzie Newsome, Ray Rice’s attorney Michael J. Diamondstein and a close personal friend of Rice’s Kyle Jakobe among others.
According to the article, the Ravens wanted to play clean up with this since Rice was the corporate face of the team. Whenever owner Bisciotti needed Rice to make an appearance, Rice was game. Rice was well known in the community and the Ravens wanted to keep that up. Also, according to sources within the article, Rice told everyone straight up about the incident. As you read the article, you’ll see photos of Rice at various functions for the Ravens. Once the video of the incident inside the elevator was released, Rice was sent this text message:
“Hey Ray, just want to let you know, we loved you as a player, it was great having you here. Hopefully all these things are going to die down. I wish the best for you and Janay. When you’re done with football, I’d like you to know you have a job waiting for you with the Ravens helping young guys getting acclimated to the league.” – Text message from Ravens owner Steve Bisciotti
In a sense, the Ravens organization was abandoning Rice even after convincing NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell to be light on Rice’s sentence. The NFLPA appealed Rice’s indefinite suspension earlier this week and it seems as if it may be in the cards for him to win. Just when we thought the NFL season would be the solution to a crazy Summer and we’re taken on another ride.
Down South, I know you bouncing right
West coast, I know you walking right, cause
Midwest, I see you swinging right"
Got so good to me doubled back twice, I
Musta been outta my mind
Knowin’ I don’t wanna
I’m about to nut up
Guess it’s too late to turn back now
Can’t apologize cuz that ain’t my style"
Afternoon rounds would be clutch.
If you’ve listened to Jhene Aiko’s past releases (2011’s Sailing Soul(s) and 2013’s Sail Out) then you know that her music is an acquired taste. Not everyone is a fan of her music but on the other side of the coin, you have those that swear by the lyrics that she sings. After many delays, Jhene’s debut album Souled Out is finally here for her fans alike to enjoy. So will Jhene bring anything new to the table on her debut release? Let’s review Souled Out.
SO debut single, “To Love & Die” (which also features Cocaine 80’s) shows Jhene singing about the risks of falling in love and the effects of it. (“Cause where I’m from/We live by the love, die by the love/We live for the love, die for the love/I live for you, love, die for you, love“) In the second verse, she borrows the hook from 50 Cent’s “Many Men” as she bridges the gaps from past failed relationships to fighting for the one that she wants to be with. (“Many, many, many men, wish death upon me/Have mercy on me/Cause I’m just a prisoner of your army of one/But I’ll fight to the death or until your heart is won“) The album’s second single, “The Pressure” Jhene sings about the burdens of relationships and as the song dwells the negative attitude starts to show. (“Major weed smoke in the air/Pass it like you just don’t care/Have you seen my fucks to give?/I have none, I cannot live with“)
The music on SO is the sound that may have listeners in their feelings. “It’s Cool” may have listeners relaying to when they are interested in being in a relationship but they are awaiting the other person to make the next move. (“If that is fine with you, it’s fine with me/Definitely love/Definitive love/Infinite love, yeah/I’ve been wrong before/But this time I am for sure/It’s you/Something you did made me feel it deep in my core“) The album’s strongest track comes in the form of a feature with Common titled “Pretty Bird (Freestyle)“. Jhene’s singing about having nothing left to give and how the person on the other end is trying to convince her to keep on pushing. (“Pretty bird, pretty bird, I know your hurtin’/Well so am I, so am I/Pretty bird, pretty bird, pretty bird, pretty bird/Please don’t cry, you can fly/And there’s a blinding light inside of you/There’s a blinding light inside of you/And they cannot deny you, they cannot deny you“) Common’s verse speaks on the pain that we all deal with on the daily. (“They say through the pain is how we learn/You landed on the window of pain, simple and plain/It’s hard for you to fly in the rain/The way love goes is not the way that it came/Come fly, un-die, be born again/I’ve seen the strongest of them be torn from men/Ripped apart and get put back together/Them the ones with the most beautiful feathers“) It’s No I.D.’s production which makes this track stand out.
As stated in the beginning, Jhene Aiko’s fans swear by her music as her critics slam her constantly. Souled Out is one of those albums that you should listen to in the dark and ready to shed some major tears. If you’re looking for vocals with high rifts and bang out production, this is not the album for you.