Watch A Special Christmas Episode of 'ESSENCE Live' Now!

On this week's episode: We take a look at some of our best #ESSENCELive moments including a visit from Empire Star Grace Gealey, our favorite #SteamRoom moments with Jay Ellis and Thomas Q. Jones, Luke James hitting every note we throw at him, the best of ESSENCE Live host Dana Blair and more! #ESSENCELive

ESSENCE.COM Dec, 23, 2015
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Hey hey hey, Essence Live. It's Christmas Eve and I hope you and yours are having a wonderful holiday season whatever you're celebrating. Today we're looking back on our best moments from Essence Live. I've got some presents, a little hot cocoa in my pjs, and of course some special guests so let's go. [MUSIC] Welcome to a special Christmas Eve edition of Essence Live. I'm your host, Dana Blair, and, Joining me today are two of my favorite gals, my homies, my colleagues. Just some good old girlfriends, Essence Entertainment director Cori Murray and of course, our relationships editor miss Charli Penn. Hey ladies! Hey! Hello hello! Cori what are you doing? [LAUGH] I am getting my Wonder Woman stance and I would like to be referred to as Wonder Woman. Yes, we can do that. For the entirety of the special. Can you show your accessories please? Oh yes. Only Cori's PJs Have accesroeis, and [CROSSTALK] we need to get you a fan. Plus it's a onesie party. It's a onesie party and yours have the feet in them. Which is super cute. Wait is that a grip on the bottom? Yes just in case. Sometimes you need a little grip. [LAUGH] Well, we're just going to jump right into it. One the biggest things that have happened in 2015 was Hotline Bling, of course. Not only did the song become a radio smash, but it helped Drake become the most streamed artists around the world. One of our favorite parts about the Hotline Bling ring The dance from the video of course I mean. It created memes everywhere. Corey, Sharly can you do a hot line green dance? Can you all hot line dance? I mean we can. We can [CROSSTALK]. But can I just say for the record I didn't see anything wrong with it because that's kind of how I dance. Great. I've seen you dance that is not how you dance. Is that I mean. I use a little That's how you slow it down. You're on the beat, though. You do this little turn. And then you do this little kick. My favorite meme was the little Einsteins. Little Einsteins. [LAUGH] Was the Mortal Combat mash up.>> Mortal Combat was good. That and the tennis racket.>> Take me back.>> I like the dominoes, where he's throwing pepperoni on the pizza. [LAUGH] We asked some of our favorite celebs to do their best Hotline Blink. The rule was you had to try to imitate Drake's moves from the video. Girls, you're going to absolutely love this.>> I am so ready.>> I can't wait.>> [MUSIC] Yeah, [MUSIC] That was too funny. Kirk Franklin killed it. Oh my god. No, but Thomas Q. Jones? How did he get down like that? Why did he go down like that. I think we know how he got down. We know how he got there. I think we know why. [LAUGH] He was All over this. We are. [CROSSTALK] But did he get back up? [LAUGH] Thank you so much to all of the celebrities who participated in that. Everybody in such great sports. But Hotline bling wasn't the only hit this year. We can't forget about Empire of course. Of course. And Blackish. Yes. What was your favorite Empire moment of Season two. Cookie Monster for life. [LAUGH] I am a cookie monster. You should of worn a cookie monster PJ. I know. That would of been cute. [CROSSTALK] Next time, but Cookie. I mean just her evolution. She's really come into her own and it's been so much fun to watch her fashion, her beauty, her sass, her mother hood. EVerything is just changing and I love it. [INAUDIBLE] what about you? I like that Anika's is going a little crazy. Me too. Like, what's going on? But I really like it. Okay. That's the real clip right there. Okay, well Empire of course is very big but Black-ish was another huge hit. We asked Essence Live family member if you will Yara Shahidi who plays Zoey on Black-ish to spit her best rhyme, Grace Gealey of Empire to dance, plus Janelle Monae gave us a sneak peek of classic man Of course, before it took over the air waves we were the first alright, so check it out. Can you free style anything? No? You don't have to no pressure. In my head I just walk around the Essence office and I go bars, bars and I see if anybody's going to challenge me. No body really does except for Yolanda our entertainment editor and I'm really trying to take her toe to toe. I'm like what? That is fantastic. Bars. And then I would just like drop a piece of paper and I'd walk away. No. I am so serious, the thing is when I read the lyrics like it's no longer cute or to rhythm, it's just me trying to spit off things. So I memorize all right, and it's like, what you want, you want a house, you want a car, four hundred acres and a mule, you want a piano, a guitar, anything. So my name's Lucy, I'm your dog. Yes. You can win them all. I can see the evil. I can tell it. I know it's legal, I don't think about it, I don't pause, and I don't be a part of the recounting of what's regal, and that's. We gonna be alright. Oh, We gonna be alright I'm really good to come in for the chorus. I'm really good to come in for the chorus. Thank you. Okay so, so here we go. One, two. Three and four, five and six. Now we're going to do the dip. I'm ready for the dip. So we go one, two, three and four, five and six. Girl, you got it. Wait, we need a partner. Oh, OK. [LAUGH] I was thinking this We make for a very good- He's a little stiff I cannot with this>>The dimensions were a little off in the printing departments.[LAUGHTER] I'm gonna break it down. [LAUGH] I love it. He didn't do too bad himself. Not bad, not bad at all. He's restored his name. This is hilarious. [MUSIC] I just thought Classic Man was the perfect song to start off the launch of Wonderland Records. [MUSIC] I'm a classic man, you can't be mean when you look this clean. I'm a classic man. Men need to be uplifted and encouraged, and Jodenna brings a unique perspective to the classic man, and what a classic man means. A classic man is really a celebration of a dignified gentleman. It's about capital, or age, it's It's about character. It's about poise, it's about discretion, taste. So a classic man has all of the above. It doesn't matter what you wear. It's how you wear it. I'm an electric lady, and I feel like I can be a classic man too. [MUSIC] One of the dreams that I've always had was all of us swimming towards this boat. And no artist, no person being left behind. The EP has been named the Eephus. And Eephus is a curve ball. A game changer. L.A. Reid has given me a platform to showcase the artists that I. I love in this movement. So it's not just a record label, but it's a movement of artists and a story of five artists coming together to help change the world. [MUSIC] We love to do fun things here at Essence Live that are so Celebs, and of course that includes games. Charlie, what was your favorite [LAUGH]. [LAUGH] What'd I miss? I'm getting amped up for the game. She's like wonder woman is powering up over there. She's ready. I think she has her answer. What's your answer? I just felt the force back there. You felt it with you, felt it with you. There are so many games that I love. There were so many but Luke James, can you hit that note? Ok. I laughed for that entire segment and he did that. He did that. No he was like. Great. But he did it because he's from New Orleans. Ok that's what we do. And he hit those notes. [LAUGH] What about you Cori? Speaking of NOLA, I love the beignet eating contest because I love a good beignet down at the Essence festival and you gotta have them. Those are all good so let's watch. [MUSIC] Hi, my name is Luke James and I [INAUDIBLE] [MUSIC] [LAUGH] [MUSIC] Wow. [MUSIC] And I will always will always love you. That's not too high. For who? [LAUGH] [MUSIC]. Love you. I will always love you. Love. That's it, that's all I got for it. [MUSIC]. [MUSIC] Oh baby, oh darling, living in the rhythm of the night [SOUND] Something else [SOUND] [MUSIC] [LAUGH] This is so weird. [LAUGH] [MUSIC] That's a big brother. [MUSIC] We're just ordinary people. We don't know which way to go. Because we're ordinary people. Maybe we should take it slow. Take it slow. Oh, this time we'll take it slow. I'm Rick James and I can hit any note you need me to hit. Oh, whoa [UNKNOWN] yeah. Yeah, yeah, yeah. [SOUND] I just hit that. I hit it, oh yeah. [SOUND] I'm going to count to three and then you can all start. Put them hands away. Okay, ready? One Two, three. Okay. Oh whoa. Reba's ready! Okay. All right people. Okay. All right. Josh is in there too now. He's not to be. Okay, not to be disturbed. I'm gonna come over here to David. Okay David, you gotta hurry up,man. Come on, David. Reva, really, Reva want them tickets. Look at the sugar everywhere. Oh, there you go. Everybody's taking a little water break. Breathe a little. David hasn't stopped. Okay. Oh, she's one down, okay, okay. One down. David's there. David, you're in last place right now, brother! What do we have over here with Josh? Look at this! This is commitment, people! This is commitment. But Riva's not giving up. Riva's not giving up. Neither is David. This is a serious competition. Okay. Oh man. Josh might be. If Josh can do it. If Josh can do it. Breathe guys. Breathe through it. Alright Reba. This is difficult. You guys think eating three beignets is. [UNKNOWN] What is it? Oh my gosh! I can't, I can't! [MUSIC] Reba is our winner ladies and gentlemen! The only lady on the competition is our winner. Congratulations. Uh-oh, uh-oh. Hold up. Breathe honey. Take a second, take a second. Reba is our winner, she barely made it but she made it through. She's going away with two Essence Festival tickets for one night. Thank you so much for playing. Hey look, high five girl. You did it. Essence Live, Cafe [UNKNOWN] in [UNKNOWN], it doesn't get much better than this. [MUSIC] These clips I mean, I promised y'all the goods. Did I deliver? Yes you did. My god. I did deliver? So much. Well, don't worry. I've got lots, lots more. Don't go anywhere. More Essence Live will be up next. Essence has always supported you and what you stand for. Now imagine Essence could be even more. Offering a selection of new beauty products specially curated every month, so you can see what's fresh, try samples before you buy, so you know what works for you. You're getting the essentials from name brands and up and coming black owned businesses. Go ahead. Be bold. Be confident. Be you. Become a member. [MUSIC] Welcome back to the best of Essence Live. I'm your host, Dana Blair, and today we are chilling. I'm joined by Essence Entertainment Director Cori Murray and Relationships Editor Charli Penn for some good old Christmas Eve fun in my PJs. Thank you, ladies, for joining me and being in your PJs. Of course. Yes. Always a pleasure. Now, Charli. It is a personal favorite of mine, but I know that you love you some steam room, so. Yes I do, It's hot in here. Hahaha. Let me tell you Dare. Tell me all about the steam room Steam is my baby. It's your baby. And we fill it with our babies. Mm. Now some people out there don't know what the Steam Room is. Okay. So can you give us a quick rundown? Yes. So I, you know, being the relationships editor, and editing eye candy every week, you know. A tough job! I was just all about the hot chocolate. Such a hard job. Such a hard job. [LAUGH] And I was like, what do we really wanna see? And I was like, we wanna see these men Steaming up our screens, okay. Our monitors, our phones, everything. And answering the questions that we're thinking everyday like, what do you wear to bed? Damn. What turns you on? They don't wear onesies. They do not wear onesies. Now if we wanna know, why can't we ask them? Now Charlie, I gotta say my favorite one was that one with Jay Ellis from The Game Tell me, I wasn't there, but put me in the room, put me in the room. I'm a professional, right? Okay. [LAUGH] > Well, I'm happily married, right? Yeah. But we got in that steam room session, and Jay [UNKNOWN] just became, he's already sexy, okay? But he became the sexiest man alive when we rolled those cameras. Wow. And we were all like: "Oh my God!" You know. You can just feel it.>> Oh my god. That was the highest rated [UNKNOWN] ever. Really? What? Ever. It was like it was made for him. But, what about Thomas Q. Jones? Nope. Cuddy buddy?>> Cuddy Buddy. [UNKNOWN] Did y'all catch that one? Yeah. Who could miss it? It was kinda uncomfortable, being in the studio. I was like, don't look. [LAUGH] I'm on a sugar free diet. Don't look. That's a lot of chocolate, though. You having a good time! Don't look. He took his time with it. But wait, how big is he, like is he like Ooh. We'll talk about that off camera. [LAUGH] Let's take a look. [LAUGH] Action. [LAUGH] So, Mary Jane and cuddy buddy like to get down anywhere, kitchens, pools, etc. What's your personal favorite place to have sex? My personal Favorite place to have sex, the couch. Why? Because the way you're positioned on the couch, means you have to move around. Which means you probably end up in different Positions. Thomas, can you let our viewers see your famous six pack? You can go ahead and flex, wink. [LAUGH] Okay. There you go. I'm in a steam room. [MUSIC] Can you work it? Is that me? That's me. Hello Jay, welcome to the steam room. What's the sexiest place to make love? The steam room, right? Sensual, it's warm, somebody might walk in, so there's a little bit of fun, there's that element to it. Yeah. I like that. What do you wear to bed? If I'm sleeping alone, I wear boxers to bed. If I'm sleeping with my girl, I don't wear nothing. What's your favorite type of foreplay? Ooh. [LAUGH] I'm kind of no limits, when it comes to foreplay. Like I feel like, it's a time for us to have fun, experiment a little bit, try out some stuff you wouldn't normally do. Maybe get rough. Maybe bite a little. Kiss a little. You know, I probably really can't say all of that. And my mama might see this too. Have you ever skinny dipped? [LAUGH] I have skinny dipped a couple times. Maybe a few weeks ago, and like two weeks before that. And I would go right now if there was a pool in here actually. [MUSIC] Sexy Music, Sexy Movies, or Sexy Talk? I like movies. Yeah, I'm a very visual person so if I can see it It's game on, no pun intended. And then sexy talk, I like knowing what you like and knowing what she wants. And then exceeding expectations. What's your favorite way to make a woman blush? So I love being in like a public place, and kinda like pulling my girl tight and getting like right next to her ear, right? Right where you lips are kinda like, you know what I'm saying? And just saying something like, yo, tonight? I'm gonna [BLANK_AUDIO] So please be ready. And now you see her goes blush and she's like, oh my god. But she know what time it is. I got to get out of here. It's way too hot. Way, way too steamy and I might be a little too turned on to be in here doing this. So Im going to get out of here. Throughout this year, we've had some pivotal moments with race in America that warranted some deeper discussion. From Sandra Bland, to Freddy Grey, and unfortunately, more black lives have been in the crosshairs this year. So, Essence Live team with Essence Debate to discuss the current climate and provide some solutions. Welcome to Essences Debates Now. The Baltimore uprising can shine light on an issue across America. What is the emotional state of our community? Fed up. And worn out. But where are their parents? Right, right. I mean, I believe that's the wrong question, the real issue is the police. I haven't even made it a block before I was arrested. It's not just about the individual now, it's about a community of people. And I think in large part most of law enforcement is doing the right thing. Why are these cops not brought to justice The people don't see value in black life. Join us as we continue the search for hope and peace. I'd like to say this, and in anyway does this reflect essence. This only reflects David Banner. But white supremacy only respects two things. That's a loss of life And a loss of finances. I was about to say money. You said finances, yes. Until black people threaten one of those two things, they will forever continue to do what they do. So instead of blaming an external source, blame yourself. Because until we blame ourselves, we will never change the things that are going on with our women, with our own lives, and with our communities. We are the problem. Thoughts, ladies? Those were some really good conversations, and I'm happy that Essence joined in. And they were difficult conversations. Very difficult. Difficult. But, you know, each and every one, in all of the hard conversations that we've had, I must admit that David Banner really impressed me. I'll admit, hip hop stars get a little bit of a stigma because they don't seem to be that involved, but he just comes in and he makes me remove all of my own stereotypes that I have. I feel like he's speaking as a black man in his troubles and I'm thankful that he's speaking up. He poses a lot of questions that make you think. He's like I'm not necessarily going to plant you in the right direction so to speak, but I'm going to try to plant those seeds to get you in the right. A destination, if that makes sense, Yeah, he's very self aware. Very self aware. He's willing to participate in the entire conversation, Yeah. Definitely. And I loved his apology to black women. Bad. Oh, it was bad. I was like, "Dude, you got it." And of course, we're gonna continue to have these types of conversations on Essence.com, in the magazine each and every month, and of course, right here on Essence Live. So, alright, we'll be right back with more of the best stuff! Essence Live Christmas Edition. [MUSIC] Welcome back to the Best of Essence live. Finally we're going to close out the show with a special performance. Wait a minute. Dana. Breaking news. Pull it out. Oh snap. What is it? Wait a minute. We have got a special performance, but the star is already here. Very special. Oh my gosh, she's chocolate and six foot something-ish. Not quite. Is she coming out of the sofa and the tree? But you do know them well. Oh who is it? It's you boo. Oh is it me? [LAUGH] And that is so right on time right now. Yes. Because the looks, the voices, the antics. Getting on the fellas all of it. Like I know. Shauna says I get on the fellas but I really don't. He's just mad about his Dallas Cowboys. Oh my god. And that is why we love you. That's why we love you. And so we rounded up Yes. our own little Montage. Oh I wanna see it. Oh give me the mic. Remote please. Wait, that's power. [LAUGH] Ready? [MUSIC] And per, blah. Sorry. [MUSIC] Yeah. Do you want to body roll? [MUSIC] Essence Live starts. I'm a cornball. Mm, mm, mm, mm, mm, aight. How are you? I was good until you came in the studio and caused a ruckus. What do you mean? Bars. Bars. We might let you get in on that next time. He over here trying to be [UNKNOWN]. Must of been really hard working around all those hotties. I'm going to get me a pompadour, y'all ain't going to hold me back. I feel like Anderson Cooper. Boom! Y'all try it. It's okay. I still love you. We're family wearing onesies together.>> Yeah.>> Those who onesie together, stay together, But I'm coming for all of you. It has been such a fun year, and Essence Live has even more fun stuff in 2016. Yes, can you imagine? Is it possible? Mm-hm. So keep watching every Thursday right here on Essence.com and as always you can connect with us anytime using the hash tag EssenceLive. And you can even call in live to ask questions of our celebrity guests. Just email us at EssenceLive@Essence.com for more information. All right, ladies. Mm. We're gonna close out with an encore performance from Gabby Wilson singing Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas. But before we get to that, I told y'all I had some gifts. Mm. I don't know if y'all should still get them after that little montage. [LAUGH] I don't know what y'all think Essence like. So this is pour vous. Oh, thank you! And this is for you. Oh! Merry Christmas everyone! Are we toasting? Of course, we have to toast. We have to look each other in the eye? Oh yeah, and then you have to sip. Have a merry Christmas everyone and cheers. Thank you. I'm going to open mine now. Wait, you have to share. Mm, I love [INAUDIBLE]. Chocolate, it's Ghirardelli. Me likey, thank you. [MUSIC] Yeah. Have yourself a merry little christmas. Make the yule tide [UNKNOWN]. [MUSIC] As in olden days. Happy golden days of yore. Faithful friends who are dear. [MUSIC] Faithful friends who are dear to us gather near to us once more, oh. For years we We all will be together, if the fates allow, but til then we'll have to muddle through [MUSIC] Ooh. Thank you.