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From CBS News:

A daughter of Malcolm X has been sentenced to five years of probation for stealing the identity of an elderly family friend to run up big credit card bills. Prosecutors say Malikah Shabazz (shuh-BAHZ') made $55,000 in illegal purchases.
  

South Sudan Enters the World Stage

With the birth of a nation comes the birth of its embassy.

Phil Moore/AFP/Getty ImagesWritten by Emily WaxIt's 9 p.m. and Sarah Chan's high heels are clacking at top speed across this Woodley Park hotel lobby. She's rushing hundreds of her South Sudanese brethren into cabs so they won't miss President Salva Kiir, who's speaking at a hotel a mile away.With the birth of a nation comes the birth of its embassy, a powerful emblem of its legitimacy and an assertion of the country's identity on the world stage. South Sudan will soon officially join Washington's 190 embassies, and Chan is one of 14 employees working for the fledging mission, whose first big undertaking is Kiir's mid-December visit here as part of a U.S. government-hosted South Sudan development conference.It was a grand, two-day coming-out party for the world's newest nation, with a speech by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and meetings with a lineup of elites from Washington's international, political, diplomatic and aid-and-trade communities.Kiir's location wasn't announced until the very last minute, a reminder that not everyone was eager to welcome the new country, whose July 9, 2011, independence redrew the map of the world."Sisters, brothers -- hurry! Our president has arrived! We have to go!" Chan called out.Tonight, Chan commands attention. That's partly because she's the daughter of Sudan People's Liberation Army commander Chan Dak, who was killed while fighting in the region's long struggle for independence.Newly emerged from a brutal 25-year conflict that killed an estimated 2 million people, South Sudan is still building its foreign diplomatic service. While some of the Washington mission's top envoys are trained in diplomacy, others, like Chan, are homespun talent.What they lack in polish, they make up for in pathos. 

Remembering Etta James

From doo-wop to soul to gospel to blues, her 50-year career was the mature sound track for several generations.

  • By: Paul Devlin | Posted: January 20, 2012 at 11:49 AM

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Music has lost another icon, the miraculously voiced Etta James, whose sultry soul, going back to the 1950s, provided a mature sound track for several generations.The 73-year-old singer died Friday, Jan. 20, of complications from leukemia, her friend and manager, Lupe de Leon, told CNN. She would have turned 74 on Jan. 25. Her leukemia was declared incurable in early December, according to a report by the Associated Press. Court records in a probate case indicated that she also suffered from dementia and kidney failure.Known for her incomparable ballad skills, James could also sing the heck out of the blues, not to mention gospel. The heyday of her music career was in the late 1950s and early 1960s, although after she was thrust back into the spotlight by the 2008 biopic Cadillac Records, in which her character was played by Beyoncé Knowles, James had begun to receive the recognition that was long overdue. (Her influence spanned the pop-and-rock spectrum. Check out young Christina Aguilera singing "Sunday Kind of Love" in 1988.)While the film, which depicted the rise of Chess Records, didn't put up spectacular numbers at the box office, James' music ("At Last" in particular) certainly found a new audience and was rescued from the lucrative purgatory of overplay in commercials. The disassociation of her mega-hit "At Last" from the many products it's been used to sell couldn't have hurt, either.And yet when Beyoncé sang "At Last" as Barack and Michelle Obama danced at their inaugural ball in 2009, James stepped back into the spotlight for the wrong reason. It was probably a poor choice of song, given its overuse in advertising, coupled with Desiree Rogers' infamous statement about Obama being a "brand."James reacted by saying she couldn't "stand Beyoncé" for singing the song she'd been "singing forever" on "big ol' President Day." This was so unfortunate (not to mention unfair to Beyoncé, who needed James less than James needed her in terms of contemporary music promotion). It prompted James' son, Donto, to tell CNN a year later that his mother had been suffering from "drug-induced dementia" at the time. As the singer's health faded, her offspring and her husband battled over control of her $1 million estate.Etta James was born Jamesetta Hawkins (now, there's a cool stage name: the reverse of a real name) in Los Angeles in 1938 to a 14-year-old single mother, Dorothy Hawkins. James would later claim that her father was the infamous white pool hustler Rudolph Wanderone, first known as "New York Fats" and later known as "Minnesota Fats" after the character Jackie Gleason made famous in The Hustler.There is strong circumstantial evidence, not to mention an oral tradition, to back the unusual claim. James' mother had told her that her father was a white boy, "one of those real slick white boys." The actor Willie Best later confirmed that it was Minnesota Fats. The billiards historian R.A. Dyer, who has written two books about Wanderone, seems to support the idea. Dyer writes, "In photographs both [Wanderone and James] look startlingly alike with their wide faces, their tiny tulip mouths, their small but piercing eyes."I don't know if I'd go so far as to co-sign "startlingly" alike, but the plausibility is there. If true, it's another sad chapter in the long history of mixed-race children in America unacknowledged by their white fathers. But at least young Jamesetta seemed to have inherited some swagger. But without a father, she surely struggled mightily with her teenage mother until she was discovered by the great Johnny Otis.Unfortunately, she became close to Best, who gave her the lowdown about her father but who was also someone she got to know through drug addiction. Heroin plagued her and so many musicians of those years (so memorably captured by Jamie Foxx in Ray).But her addiction also led her to be immortalized in what many critics have called one of the best books of 2010 (and best books of many years), the exceptional memoir Life, by Keith Richards of the Rolling Stones. (James mentions her respect for Richards in her 1995 memoir The Rage to Survive: The Etta James Story.) Richards memorializes her lovingly in his book, and his statement will surely, along with her music, outlast the Beyoncé controversy:Another great singer and a girl after my own heart -- as well as my bride in a rock-and-roll "marriage" -- is Etta James. She'd been making records from the early '50s, when she was a doo-wop singer. She's expanded into every range since then ... Now, Etta had been a junkie. So we found reciprocation almost immediately ... It takes one look in the eye for one to know another. Incredibly strong, Etta, with a voice that could take you to hell or take you to heaven. And we hung in a dressing room, and like all ex-junkies, we talked about the junk. And why did we do this, the usual soul-searching. This culminated in a backstage wedding, which in show business terms is like, you get married but you're not really married. You exchange vows and stuff, on the top of the backstage stairs. And she gave me a ring, I gave her a ring, and actually that's where I decided her name's Etta Richards. She'll know what I mean.  

Obama Croons to Harlem Supporters' Delight

At the Apollo to raise funds, he treated them to a little Al Green -- and a pitch for four more years.

President Obama (Getty Images)Who knew President Obama could sing?He caught a sold-out audience of Democratic supporters off guard last night at the historic Apollo Theater in New York's Harlem community when he broke out into a bar of Al Green's "Let's Stay Together." Following opening acts by india.arie and Green, President Obama began his remarks by crooning -- on-key -- "I'm so in love with you." As the gathering of more than 1,500 cheered with delight, he looked around and noted with a grin that the Apollo's beloved Sandman hadn't come with his hook to shoo the president offstage.As if. Even if the beloved tap dancer of Showtime at the Apollo had somehow been resurrected (he died in 2003) to let President Obama know his time was up, he'd have had to tackle a phalanx of Secret Service agents and an audience that fell solidly in the president's political base. The racially diverse gathering of uptown movers and shakers had come to see history: the first time a sitting president has appeared at the Apollo Theater.Democratic Reps. Charlie Rangel and Jerrold Nadler were among those on hand to enjoy the added treat of an impromptu presidential performance, which followed a concert featuring  india.arie's upbeat set ("There's Hope" and the new "6th Avenue" were among her selections) and soul legend Green, who kept the crowd on its feet with "I'm Still in Love With You" and "Let's Stay Together."  

Heidi Klum And Seal Divorce Over This 'Deal Breaker,' What's Yours?

First Posted: 01/23/2012 2:07 pm 

Heidi Klum is leaving Seal, her husband of seven years, but not for the reason many celebrities split. According to TMZ, individuals close to the couple say infidelity was not to blame, but rather Seal's temper: "Seal's inability to control his anger has become too much for Heidi to take, in no small part because it's affecting their children." The two were raising four kids together: Leni, 7, from Klum's previous relationship, Henry, 6, Johan, 5 and Lou, 2. The couple was known for their public displays of affection, lavish Halloween parties and annual renewal of their marriage vows, so news of the separation was received with shock, the Telegraph reported. If it's true that Seal's temper caused the split, it sounds like anger, for Klum, was a deal breaker that outweighed her spouse's good points. Dr. Bethany Marshall argued in her 2007 book, "Deal Breakers," that recognizing what you can't take is a good thing. "Identifying your deal breaker ... holds out the possibility of helping you to understand where the relationship has gone wrong, what needs to be done in order to make it better, and when to walk away because you're doing more work than him to fix it," she wrote. It's worth noting, however, that a person's deal breakers can change based on her experiences, at least according to dating expert April Beyer. Beyer told CBS News in a 2009 interview: "If you are looking for, at 45, what you were looking for at 25, then you might have a problem." She identified the most common deal breakers for men as a woman who who is extremely independent (interesting, considering that TMZ also suggested Klum's entrepreneurial success might be a factor in the split), inflexible, or who doesn't take care of her appearance (probably not the issue here). Women's most common deal breakers, Beyer said, are a man being too frugal, lacking an overall plan, and cheating or lying.   

Drake At Sundance: Three Hours Late, Stars Party Hard At Performance

First Posted: 01/22/2012 10:41 am 

There was a blizzard in Park City, Utah on Saturday night, but Drake kept a celeb-packed party blazing hot -- once he was finally able to show up, anyway.It was an internet-favorite extravaganza at the Bing Bar, Microsoft's branded hangout at the Sundance Film Festival, as the hip hop star headlined a buzzy event that featured the standup comedy of "Parks and Rec" star Aziz Ansari as his opening act. Ansari was the victim of a rowdy crowd whose pitch threatened to drown out his act; according to Twitter witnesses, as the crowd began to boo the normally beloved comedian, "Red Tails" star Cuba Gooding Jr. rushed the stage to admonish the audience.Ansari's response? "I'm not that upset, Cuba Gooding Jr."The crowd was kept waiting for Drake -- Ansari's publicist, Lewis Kay, tweeted, "Drake is to punctuality as Casey Anthony is to good parenting" -- and about three hours later than scheduled, the "Degrassi" alum finally arrived. He had a good excuse, too, telling the crowd, "I almost lost my life 6 times getting here. My flight was delayed 6 hrs. Some of the curviest roads I've ever been on."Immediately, his trademark style was critiqued. GQ senior editor Logan Hill tweeted, "Drake arrived at his dundanve party in middle of a near-blizzard and is NOT WEARING A SWEATER"; Vulture also noted his lack of warm overshirt, but did add that he was wearing a parka.Stars such as "Breaking Bad's" Aaron Paul, Ansari's "Parks and Rec" co-star Aubrey Plaza, "Man on a Ledge" star Anthony Mackie, and "SNL" alums Will Forte and Chris Kattan were on hand to revel in the scene; check out the photos of the event below.  

State Of The Union Guest List: Michelle Obama Continues A 30-Year Tradition Of Extraordinary Americans

First Posted: 01/24/2012 1:23 pm 

When Sara Ferguson, an elementary school teacher from Pennsylvania, and Alicia B. Davis, a General Motors plant manager from Michigan, join First Lady Michelle Obama in her viewing box during Tuesday's State of the Union Address, they will be taking part in 30 years of presidential history.Every president since Ronald Reagan has looked up during his speech and into the rafters to give a shout-out to special invited guests. These guests have included everyday Americans, war heroes, schoolteachers, celebrities and small business owners."For nearly three decades, extraordinary Americans who exemplify the themes and ideals laid out in the State of the Union Address have been invited to join the First Lady in her viewing box," Kevin Lewis, a White House spokesman told The Huffington Post's Black Voices via e-mail Tuesday morning. Tuesday night, as President Barack Obama uses his speech to lay out his plan for moving America forward and beyond these tough economic times, he will be joined by Ferguson and Davis, as well as Bryan Ritterby, a lab technician from Grand Rapids, Mich., and Debbie Bosanek, the secretary of multi-billionaire Warren Buffet, who famously proposed "The Buffet Rule," which calls for the wealthiest Americans to pay their fair share of taxes. Mark Kelly, the former astronaut and husband of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (R-Ariz.), is also among the president's invited guests. Ferguson, who teaches literacy and math at Columbus Elementary in Parkside, Pa., is a third generation educator who vowed to continue teaching her students as the school district faced bankruptcy earlier this year when the state made drastic cuts to education. "We are adults; we will make a way," she said, according to Lewis, the White House spokesman. "The students don't have any contingency plan. They need to be educated, so we intend to be on the job."Davis, who was recently appointed plant manager at General Motors Orion Assembly and Pontiac Stamping, rose through the ranks of General Motors and was the company's first African American woman to be appointed a general manager when she headed its Arlington assembly plant.Ferguson and Davis are the latest in a string of African Americans to be honored with a special invitation to the White House during the speech, perhaps more of an honor under the country's first black president. Last year's black guests included Ursula M. Burns, the CEO of Xerox Corporation, tapped by the president to help lead a White House campaign on science, technology, engineering and math; and Brandon Ford of Philadelphia, then a junior at West Philadelphia High School who lead a team of young engineers to the final rounds of a national automotive engineering contest which pitted them against corporations, universities and other well-funded organizations.The tradition of inviting everyday Americans to hear the president address the nation during the State of the Union dates back to 1982 when President Reagan invited Lenny Skutnik, a Congressional Budget Office employee. Skutnik dove into the icy Potomac River to rescue passengers of a downed airplane.Reagan invited Skutnik to sit with First Lady Nancy Reagan during his speech, and heralded him for exemplifying "the spirit of American heroism at its finest."The presidential guests have since been called "Skutniks."In the early 1990s, President George H.W. Bush invited Alma Powell and Brenda Schwarzkoph, whose husbands, Gens. Colin Powell and Norman Schwarzkph, were heading up military operations in Iraq.President Bill Clinton invited baseball great Hank Aaron and now-sullied home run legend Sammy Sosa, as well as Richard Dean, a Social Security Administration employee who searched through the rubble of the Oklahoma City bombing to rescue survivors.Later, President George W. Bush also invited war heroes and their families and people who helped thwart terror attacks against the United States, including a pair of flight attendants who helped foil "shoe-bomber" Richard Reid.Obama has used his invitations to also highlight American heroism, perseverance and ingenuity during these tough economic times. Last year's guests included Daniel Hernandez, Giffords' former congressional intern, who is credited with helping to save her life after a shooting in her district. "The guests of the First Lady each have uniquely American stories to tell, and in many cases their stories highlight not only the challenges we've overcome," Lewis said, "but some of the ways in which we can move forward together as a nation and create an America built to last."

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Earlier, Davis’ defense team had filed an eleventh-hour plea to the Georgia Supreme Court to halt the scheduled execution. That plea was denied.

That sparked a frantic rush by the defense team to take their plea to the U.S. Supreme Court with less than an hour to go before Davis was to be executed.

That plea held up the execution for hours as the 7 p.m. EST execution time came and went, and tension continued to build as lines of riot police were drafted in to attend to chanting crowds outside the execution venue.

As the hours passed, still no word came from the U.S. Supreme Court. It was not until about 10:20 p.m. EST that news emerged that the Supreme Court had denied the defense team's final plea. The Court also had previously rejected defense appeal arguments in 2010.

Davis has spent 22 years on death row for the 1989 murder of Mark MacPhail, a Savannah, Ga., police officer who was shot dead when he attempted to help a homeless man who was being attacked.

The Georgia Board of Pardons and Paroles denied Davis’ request for clemency, following last-minute testimony in a convened hearing Tuesday. It was a decision many called “unconscionable” and had prominent figures such as former President Jimmy Carter and Pope Benedict XVI speaking out against the death sentence.

Heidi Neumark, pastor of Trinity Lutheran Church of Manhattan, told The Christian Post that a judicial decision to end a person’s life was not in accordance with Christian teaching.

“Christian teaching is not about judging people,” theNew York City pastor told CP. “It’s about preserving life and leaving judgment in God’s hands.”

But Pastor David Wright, CEO of DOersTV, an online Christian TV network, believes the death penalty is in fact biblical, citing scripture Romans 13:1-5 which reads:

“Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God…”

When asked whether or not capital punishment was biblical, Wright told CP, “Yes I believe it is, if it’s correct and not the wrong person.”

“However, that does not mean a person has not been forgiven by God just because they have a death sentence,” he added.

A U.S. envoy for Pope Benedict XVI sent a letter appealing to state officials to consider the circumstances that have weakened the credibility of Davis’ conviction, Savannah Morning News reported.

Monsignor Martin Krebs wrote, “I reiterate the commitment of the Holy Father, Pope Benedict XVI, to uphold the sacredness and dignity of all human life, and I hope you will give heed to his petition.” 

 

Smithsonian Acquires Parliament-Funkadelic Mothership

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From the Washington Post:

The funkiest UFO in the galaxy is about to land in Chocolate City.


The Mothership - the iconic stage prop made famous by legendary funk collective Parliament-Funkadelic - has been acquired by the Smithsonian's National Museum of African American History and Culture where it will help anchor a permanent music exhibition when the museum opens its doors in 2015.

"I'm about to cry!" Parliament-Funkadelic frontman George Clinton said over the phone from his home in Tallahassee on Wednesday. "They're taking the Mothership! They're shipping it out! ... But I'm glad it's going to have a nice home there."

It isn't the original Mothership. This 1,200-pound aluminum spacecraft was built in the mid-'90s - an indistinguishable replica, Clinton says, of the smoke-spewing stage prop he first introduced to slack-jawed funk fans in 1976.

Funkmeister Bootsy Collins Opens a University of Funk

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Funk University, Bootsy Collins


You can now refer to the master of funk Bootsy Collins as professor. The bespectacled bassist will open his virtual doors to the world's first Funk University this summer.

Casper the Funky Ghost or Bootzilla, Bootsy's alter egos, will drop some P-Funk science on those disciples who really crave it. A staunch believer in the credo, "A groove is a terrible thing to waste," the rhinestone funk star has created an intense curriculum of lectures, lessons, and exercises on bass-guitar-playing techniques for intermediate or advanced players that can be accessed through streaming video with available tablature downloads.

Bootsy, whose spiritual space calling resulted in him becoming a standout band member of the '70s Parliament-Funkadelic, has also enlisted the help of some bass-legend guest professors, whose names remain under wraps.

The courses offer everything that a typical online class would provide, even practical testing. Funk wannabees can also access office hours, where their questions will be addressed online.

The Funk University begins July 1. Enrollment will be on a first-come first-serve basis. Pricing has not yet been released.

Bill Cosby to Russell Simmons: 'Get the F*ck Out My Face!'


Just when you thought Russell Simmons had the last word stemming from his 2009 verbal attack towards Bill Cosby, think again.

The Def Jam Records cofounder leveraged his Global Grind platform to inform the masses of his most recent encounter with the renowned comedian, philanthropist and activist during last week's Jackie Robinson Awards gala.

During the event, which honored hip-hop mogul Sean 'Diddy' Combs with the Renaissance Man of the Decade award, Simmons attempted to make amends with the Emmy Award-winning comedy icon by apologizing for his criticism. His effort was met with a scathing response.

"I wanted to find him to apologize, to tell him I was sorry about my statements and to tell him that I loved him," Simmons explained. "Suddenly, I turned and he was behind the curtain and I said, 'I love you,' and he responded on some real hip-hop, 'Get the f*ck out my face!' "

The Philadelphia native has made it quite clear not to confuse him with Cliff Huxtable.

Prior to the two industry giants' recent face-to-face meeting, Simmons wrote an open letter to Cosby in Nov. 2009 condemning and questioning his anti-hip hop campaign in addition to his generation's propensity to correlate violence with today's youth.


"It is certainly not that he and the rest of the elders don't care, because they do," he asserted. "In fact, their intentions are pure and good. All the things they say are actually true. What they don't understand is that the young people who they criticize did not create their own realities." he wrote, before adding, "Mr. Cosby, you know that your generation is carrying a lot more dirt, you are all just smart enough to cover it up."

Not one to lose his cool, Simmons took a liking to Cosby's off-color remark. In fact, he was even more intrigued by the their interaction following Simmons' onstage presentation to Combs.

"His next move was straight-up old-school pre-b-boy hood sh--," Simmons explains. "He walked by me and bumped me with his shoulder as I walked offstage after presenting my award to Sean, just like the cool-ass character in 'Let's Do It Again.' I then loved him even more."

"He's from the same hood I'm from, just got a lucky break like me, cause I am [one of] those suffering men. And after that elbow, I knew he was too."

'Avatar's Laz Alonso Ready To 'Breakout' In New TV Series

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For some actors, stardom comes either on their very first film, which may have been in a blockbuster, or in a lead role. For others, fame comes gradually, after some growing pains and paying their dues in the business.

After appearing in small roles on sitcoms and films, such as 'Jarhead,' 'Stomp The Yard,' and 'This Christmas,' actor Laz Alonso finally got his big break when Spike Lee cast him opposite Michael Ealy and Derek Luke in the war film, 'Miracle at St. Anna.'

While the film didn't do big numbers at the box office, it was enough for Alonso to be seen in a bigger spotlight than his previous gigs.

As opposed to actors who entered the field through comedy or sports, the 36 year-old came through the finance world, when he left his job as an investment banker to take on a new challenge.

"Acting was always a part of my long-term plan, but my short-term plan was to become an investment banker, make a couple million bucks, and then finance my acting career that way," he told BlackVoices.com yesterday. "I won't have to sleep in my car and do all kinds of odd jobs. Once I was in the workforce and I was actually working on Wall Street I realized I wasn't going to be a millionaire in my first two years on Wall Street. That's just a ridiculous way of thinking, but at the time it sounded like a brilliant plan."

"Once I realized that was not going to be the case, instead of going to grad school and getting my MBA, which is what most investment bankers have to do as part of their career path, I chose to pursue art," he continued.

Within two years, former BET host turned movie star's fame would reach farther than he thought when director James Cameron cast him in the 2009 Oscar nominated film 'Avatar,' which ended up being the biggest grossing film of all-time.

After briefly appearing with Queen Latifah in 2010's 'Just Wright,' Alonso's game has reached a new level with an upcoming lead role in 'Jumping the Broom,' co-starring Paula Patton and Angela Bassett.
If that wasn't enough, hej ust completed another lead role on A&E Network's original scripted drama series, 'Breakout Kings,' which premieres March 13 and follows an unconventional partnership between the U.S. Marshals' office and a group of convicts as they work to catch fugitives on the run.

Also cast in the show are Domenick Lombardozzi, Malcolm Goodwin, Jimmi Simpson, Serinda Swan, and Brooke Nevin.

While his roles in films are getting bigger with wider exposure, the Washington D. C native didn't want to let a good opportunity pass by him.

"First and foremost I love this character. When I met with Nick Santora, one of the creators of the show, he really wanted to write him as Clint Eastwood-ish. The one cop in a town full of bad people, but he can get the job done, and that attracted me a tremendous amount. The fact that in order to do good things this guy may have to break a few rules is appealing. This show explored that a little bit. It's not a picture-perfect world that we live in on this show, and we're not a picture-perfect team, we mess up. We don't necessarily like each other the majority of the time. I think it's a really true portrayal of real life, it's not cookie cutter, but we figured it out somehow."

After playing a criminal in 'Fast and Furious,' the role of veteran U.S. Marshals Charlie Duchamp gives Alonso the chance to work on the "right side of the law."

"I would describe my character as the moral core of the group. You've got these guys and girls that are criminals who now have the opportunity to do the right thing but we still encourage them to think like criminals, because it's that very thought process that helps us catch people that are even worse than they are. Then you've got my partner Ray, played by Domenick Lombardozzi, who has a pretty dark past of his own. Even though he's a member of the law, he isn't the most upstanding member of law enforcement. My job is to keep the wheels turning without things falling apart, and with each episode it becomes harder and harder for me to do."

Along with the TV series, Alonso's quite aware of the the balance he has to maintain when it comes time to not only promote this show, but his upcoming film projects.

"Balance is definitely the biggest challenge," he said. "You definitely wear a lot of hats. Now I'm wearing the promotion hat where I'm promoting everything I've been working on.

"You got 'Breakout Kings' that premieres this Sunday on A&E at 10pm. Just a month-and-a-half later, Mother's Day Weekend, I have 'Jumping the Broom,' which is going to be in theaters everywhere. The work doesn't end. This is probably as long hours as being on set shooting, but I love it. I don't consider acting work 'cause I love it so much. There's a saying, 'If you love what you do you'll never work a day in your life again.' I really believe that. Even this part of the business is fun. I get to interact with fans, and I really get to feel that support that's so necessary for actors to get from their fanbase. I get to give back, interact, be acceptable, hear their opinions and respond. We do that a lot with this particular show on A&E ... People who love cop shows and crime shows are going to get more than what they usually get from procedural dramas."

Sister Souljah: 'Midnight' Sequel, 'Meaning of Love,' Underway

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It looks like Sister Souljah may be continuing her winning streak.

The former raptivist turned best-selling author will release her newest book next month - and it is a sequel.

'Midnight and the Meaning of Love' (Atria, $26.95) is a follow-up to her 2008 New York Times best seller 'Midnight, A Gangster Love Story' and will go on sale April 12. On her Website, the former Public Enemy-associated rapper informed her readers that she was trying to get the book out last fall, but it was delayed after she completed it. "I hope you ALL know that I threw my heart into [it] ... and I hope you'll agree that it was worth the wait!"


The hefty novel is told from the point of the view of the African-born, devout Muslim, street-savvy protagonist from whom it is titled. It picks up where the last book left off: Midnight heads to Japan to get his 16-year-old Asian wife, Akemi, after her father took her back to their native land with no warning. He must travel across three countries and numerous cultures in his attempt to defeat his opponent.
Along his life-affirming sojourn, Midnight meets people who change him forever, even as he changes them. Encountering temptations and taking risks is par for course in his quest to get the woman he loves back.

Of the beloved character, Souljah said: "I thought, 'Wouldn't it be something to speak in a male voice?' And wouldn't it be something else to speak in an Islamic voice? Once I realized I had to go deep into my imagination and that the manhood had to stay in the tone and that I couldn't slip into a Souljah or feminine voice, I got excited about it. As I writer you have to be excited about what you're writing about. If you're not excited, you can't excite the reader."

Aside from pioneering the street-lit movement with her 1999 debut novel 'The Coldest Winter Ever,' Souljah (nee Lisa Williamson) is best known for her work as a political activist and educator of underclass urban youth.

'The Coldest Winter Ever' became such a phenomenon that Souljah's avid fans were waiting with baited breath for its follow-up. Many thought 'Midnight' - who is based on a secondary character of 'Coldest Winter' - was its sequel. To many people's dismay, it wasn't.

Souljah defiantly noted that the book was not a "sequel" but a "prequel" during an interview with BlackVoices.com. "I wrote 'The Coldest Winter Ever' as a complete work," she clarified. "If I were to do a sequel, let's look at the story: At the end of the book, Winter went to jail and was sentenced to 15 years. When Winter comes out of prison at 33, will her story still be hot? Would she have the same confidence? Her mom is dead; her father is doing life. These are real things that happened. She doesn't have the same resources. Do you really hold the same position when you're 33? Can you talk all of that s--- you talked when you were a teenager? No! So what makes that so hot?

"I loved 'The Coldest Winter Ever'; I would be a fool not to love it," she continued. "I wrote it. I imagined it. I put it into circulation. But I wrote it in a complete form - a beginning, middle and an end."

A proposed film version of the movie - optioned years ago by actress Jada Pinkett Smith - is still in limbo, but Souljah is readying a follow-up to the beloved tome after she finishes touring with 'Meaning of Love.'

A graduate of Rutgers University, she remains a respected personality in her own community. In between books, she worked with Sean 'Diddy' Combs at his charitable Daddy's House foundation.

"Souljah is the #1 author of the hip hop generation," the rap mogul noted.

Public Enemy front man Chuck D has also championed her literary efforts: "[She] has led a generation back into reading books. Souljah clearly and forever stands as a major trendsetter."



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Barry Bonds' Perjury Trial Gets Closer

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Barry Bonds' Perjury Trial Gets Closer

The Barry Bonds circus is coming to town. The former Major League slugger is scheduled to have his day in court, finally, after years of legal maneuvering.

While the government is intent to place Bonds behind bars for perjury and obstruction of justice, claiming that he lied to a grand jury about his alleged use of steroids and other performance-enhancing drugs, the real story lies in his relationship with his former trainer Greg Anderson. Anderson has spent over a year in jail thus far, refusing to testify as a government witness to implicate Bonds.

Back in 2003, Bonds became a central figure in the Bay Area Laboratory Co-operative (BALCO) scandal, where it was revealed that a designer steroid, called "the Clear," was being widely used by athletes who were achieving some incredible results on the field.

Despite his remarkable change in physique and increased power and production as he reached an age where most men start using Viagra, Bonds maintains that he never "knowingly" took steroids.

And I guess that he never "knowingly" realized that his head was expanding - but that is not the interesting point here.

When all of this reaches its merciful end, what we really want to see is Bonds and Anderson singing an updated version of the Dionne Warwick classic "That's What Friends Are For." I don't know about you, but I can't count one friend who would spend more than a year in jail, and then some, for me.

New Evidence That LAPD Officers May Have Killed Notorious B.I.G


CBS Los Angeles is now reporting
new evidence that officers within the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) may have played a role in the death of rapper Christopher Wallace, also known as the Notorious B.I.G and Biggie Smalls.

Wallace was murdered March 9, 1997.



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According to witnesses, a lone gunman in the driver's seat of a black Chevy Impala pulled up to the truck, where Wallace was sitting in the passenger seat, and opened fire. Wallace died shortly thereafter.

The Wallace family filed suit against the LAPD in 2005, bringing forth additional evidence that implicated LAPD officers in the death of Christopher Wallace. The two officers under suspicion are David Mack and Rafael Perez.

Both Perez and Mack are in prison now for unrelated crimes, Mack for bank robbery and Perez for stealing cocaine.

The new evidence involves an alleged conversation between Perez and a cellmate in the L.A. County jail. Mack and Perez were reportedly close confidants with Death Row Records, the label that represented rap artist Tupac Shakur, who was involved in a highly publicized dispute with Biggie.

In sworn statements, the cellmate said that Mack and Perez were on the scene when Biggie was killed, with Perez working security:

"Perez told Mack that Biggie Smalls was in his truck----circle whose truck?----Kicking it with someone else in the truck."

The cellmate says that Perez never said he set up the murder of Biggie Smalls, but that he strongly believes Perez had something to do with the murder. There were hundreds of pages of documents in the inmate's sworn statements that were not utilized in the original LAPD investigation.

Former LAPD Lead Investigator Russell Poole says that the documents are crucial and that he was frustrated that his investigation in to the murder was thwarted when he got too close to the truth. Poole resigned from the LAPD in 1999.

Poole put things in to proper context by referencing the fact that the LAPD was already dealing with major headaches after the Rodney King beating just a few years earlier, as well as the O.J. Simpson trial. This racially charged environment, according to Poole, made LAPD officials squeamish about the idea of enduring yet another major controversy.

Poole also mentioned the financial incentives of the department for possibly covering up the truth. According to Wallace family attorneys, Rafael Perez was on duty the night of the homicide.

If Perez was involved, then the LAPD would become liable for hundreds of millions of dollars.

Given the LAPD's tattered history of corruption and abuse of power, it is entirely conceivable that officers were involved in the murder of the Notorious B.I.G. as well as the deaths of countless citizens whose stories will never be told.

Additionally, the fact that officers Perez and Mack were both sent to prison gives tremendous credibility to Russell Poole's allegations. One might hope that years later, since the dust has settled and a few bigwigs have retired, the world may finally get the truth about what happened to Christopher Wallace.

The East Coast-West Coast battle between Biggie and Tupac was one of the most unfortunate incidents in the history of hip-hop. The gang warfare mentality of the West Coast, which was artificially contrived when guns and drugs from outside sources were allowed to flood South Central Los Angeles, is reflected in the music of Tupac Shakur and other groups of the day, namely N.W.A.

This kill-or-be-killed mentality spread like social poison with an in-your-face style of music that translated into real violence that ended the lives of scores of young black men.

As a fan of both Biggie and Pac, I believe that Tupac was truly prepared to die. I honestly don't believe that Biggie wanted to die and that he and his partner Sean "Diddy" Combs were hoping that common sense might prevail in this deadly game of chicken.

In the West Coast, though, where children are militarized at an early age and prepared for a short existence, beefs like this typically don't end until someone is in a casket. Years after the deaths of Biggie and Pac, homicide is the leading cause of death for young black males, with gangsta rap serving as fuel for the fire.

But while it's easy to blame the artists for the music that encourages black men to carry guns and kill one another, we must look deeper at the gun manufacturers, government officials, record labels and others who earn billions by creating this deadly environment. Quite a few institutions have blood on their hands, and we must dig to the root in order to stop it.

O.J. Simpson Beaten


According to the National Enquirer, O.J. Simpson has been having a hard time in prison. The magazine is claiming that some white supremacists have been targeting Simpson for bragging about his sexual conquests with white women:

"Inmates cheered as a muscular young skinhead knocked him to the ground, punching and kicking him to a bloody pulp and inflicting injuries so severe he secretly spent nearly three weeks in the infirmary before he recovered."

While the Nevada Department of Corrections is denying that any such incident took place, I know enough about corrections departments to know that their words have as much credibility as Sarah Palin at a Mensa convention.

The Georgia Department of Corrections (DOC) effectively denied that the largest prison strike in U.S. history ever took place and the DOC in other states run along similar paradigms with very little accountability to anyone.

It is not out of the question that the man who has had an "X" on his back for the past 16 years would be targeted by white supremacist prison inmates. The Department of Corrections is believed to be working to keep Simpson's beating a secret, according to the report.

Simpson is currently serving a sentence, totaling 33 years, for charges ranging from kidnapping to armed robbery. He is eligible for parole after serving nine years, but it's not clear if he is going to be released early or not. Given that he was sent to prison in 2008, he will be older than the age of 70 before having the opportunity to be a free man again.

The O.J. Simpson trials (both 1995 and 2008) were bellwethers of public perceptions on race and justice. The fact that whites and blacks viewed the original O.J. Simpson trial so differently is a ringing indictment of our nation's remaining hurdles on the road to racial equality.

Both of Simpson's cases were met with tremendous outrage from members of the public, who never would have cared about the case if O.J. had been accused of murdering a black woman. In fact, they probably wouldn't have cared much more if Nicole Brown Simpson's alleged killer had been white.

Simpson, who was born in 1947, turns 64 years old this year. He has changed from the strapping young superstar he was back in the 1970s and 1980s to the tired old man who probably lives in fear of those who are incarcerated alongside him.

Simpson spent 15 years after his original murder trial being treated like a guilty man, only to see a broad smirk on the collective face of the American public upon his most recent incarceration.

America's anger toward O.J. Simpson has been nothing less than an embarrassment, revealing a troubling lack of class of this country's citizens.

Our nation failed the test of the much-touted post-racial America that Republicans once talked about after the election of President Barack Obama (notice they aren't talking about that anymore after seeing the Tea Party in action).

Whether you believe Simpson to be guilty or not, the reality is that the lynch mobs that have served to taunt him are not entirely disconnected from the same mobs that threaten the lives of the first black family in the White House.

I don't have much respect for O.J. Simpson as a man.

His denial of the black community for so many years, combined with his extensive drug use, always bothered me. I also don't consider it out of the question that he did indeed kill his ex-wife.

In spite of my own belief that Simpson may have done something wrong, the fact that Americans have ignored the justice system or any sense of fairness to chase down a black man for allegedly killing a white woman reminds me of the so-called "Christians" of the past who once hung black men from trees. Black History Month, of all times, should be the period during which we most readily recognize this troubling historical relationship. The present was created by the past, and OJ Simpson's ordeal is a way for American to look into its social mirror.

Jada Pinkett Smith; One outstanding Black Woman.

Those Pesty squirrels

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Recently she's been captivating the attention of Both Children & Adults by helping her husband Will direct the movie "the karate kid" ; Which Includes her youngest son Jaeden, Who might I add did a terrific Job In acting out his role. The movie was based on the Original Movie, Yet Jada announced that she wanted the movie to have the same feel - But not be exact. She & Will wanted to have a movie that could embody their sons talent and have a perpetual outline as The original motion picture did in the eightys. Not only has she been working hard on the movie, but her televeision series "Hawthorne" Has re aired & new shows have been on her daily planner. I myself, Believe that Jada is one of the most talented African american Female actresses out there. Whatever role has been given to her she has Ultimately destroyed and made her own of It. Need I say more?! 

 - Braszii *

ALL ABOUT THE PROMO BABY . COM

Mr. CEO of Young Money Records / The Best Rapper Alive; Dwayne Michael Carter also Known as "Lil Wayne" Was finally sent to prision March 3rd, 2010. Apparently, His Previous three Court dates were post-poned due to various reasons. The Man On Top, Has finally gained himself a Little "down-time." Carter's last 'tweet' to His fans was stating that "Law Is Mind without Reasoning, . . I WILL RETURN." That Indeed He will. His Fans have been anticipating New music & Fresh Videos from "Rapper 'Ternt Singer" Lil Wayne & His Young Money Click. His charges consist of, Attempted Gun possesion And actually admitting that He In fact Did have a Loaded Gun on His tour bus In 2007. Wayne will be facing a Year of Jail-time In a New York City Penitentiary, & In hopes that He can maintain Good behavior, He'll be out In 8 months. With that Being said, Free WEEZY BABY!

"Drizzy" [ Drake ] ROGERS! The man holding down the throne for now. Every song, Is a Hit record with this man. Every punchline Is a verse to Remember for years. In the literal Sence. I remember Back In the Days when He used to play "Jimmy Brooks" On Degrassi. Canada Native, Blowing Up Big all Over the country. Of course, What other label would He be signed to other than Young Money Ent.?! This young voice Is being heard Everywhere & Being Featured on Every song you hear Now a days. From "Best I ever Had", To "BedRock", To "HoustaLantaVegas", To "Over"; He's lyrically Putting a Chokehold on the Game. I Guess while Lilwayne Is laying low behind Bars, Drizzy Drake'll Have to fien for himself & Keep things together. His biggest fans Are anticipating & Waiting to see Exactly & Precisely - What His Next Move Just May Be. Keep A LOOK out On This Young Rap Star.

The Most hated, Most Talked about Couple of The Year. Producer/Rapper Swizz Beatz And The Beautiful Musician/Singer Alicia Keys. The Two Have been having Secret relations For years now. While Rapper/Producer Swizz Beatz was still formally Married To His wife, The Late "Mashonda" Who sang Songs such as "black-out" & Even featured on the Chorus Of Rapper "Cassidy's" Number One Hit , "Get No Better". Allegedly, according To Mashonda - Rapper Swizz Beatz has failed To pay hardly any of his Child Support & Couldn't even pay for her heat when It got shut off. According to Rapper Swizz Beatz & Friends Mashonda's house Sits on 30,000 Square feet & That He did pay for the Heat in The wing we're Mashonda & His Child were sleeping at. Not only was he paying for the heat, But also paying for a numerous amount of Bills Plus more on his, Her & The Child's behalf. Swizz Recently Stated In An Interview With DJ ENUFF, That Alicia had absolutely nothing to do with His divorce; & That His marriage had been broken from the Beginning. He Also claims that "If you feel That the person You're with isn't your equal & Ya'll don't have that balance on the Same level. . Then It's just not gonna work."  Nobody knows the hidden truths & Secrets about Alicia & His Relationship; & Honestly, If they're Happy That's all that Matters. I Truly adore Alicia As a Singer/Songwriter/Musician & Swizz On So Many Levels. I Feel as though they Truly want to be together, SO LET THEM BE! I wish these two nothing But good things For their future Together.

Say It Ain't So! The "happily" married couple Singer/Songwriter "Monica" & Rapping Artist "Rocko" Have Split without any warning. No natural Reason has been stated for the split yet, So I guess as Everyone Else; We'll just have to speculate & wait for More Info On the situation. I personally Love Monica; That woman can truley sing her heart out. & The way she's handled this situation, She's deffinately earned points with Me. With that being said, Here are Monica's "Only &Last Words On the Situation at this point In time."

& She says: "  I am going to do what I have always done. Focus on my children, My family and My career. Rocko was put under a lot of harsh scrutiny during our entire relationship & I'm sure that wasn't easy. However at this point our focus is being great parents. He is a great father to his children, & continuing forward, that Is my only concern. With every breath In our bodies we will make sure that they feel as little pain as possible & continue to have the lives they had before with no attention dedicated to our separation. I will not be speaking on the subject further unless it is with God, who I believe does Everything with reason. I love my children & Their father & I'm truly grateful for those that Loved & supported us through the good & the bad throughout the years."

Take It One Day at a time Monica! It can only get better from here.

He Did It the BEST In '09 !

"YUUUPPPPP!!" The most overused / memorable phrase from this man. In 2009, Songz litterally had the Radio, Internet; Basically the entire USA ON SMASH. Without any questions asked, He Is one man that can't be topped. When It comes to R&B artists, He Is Ranked #1 In my book. He has a voice so captivating, That Everybody & anybody could fall In love with It. He's made the Ladies "Say Ahhh" & has Forced them to believe he's truly "Invented Sex". He Made the Dudes "Drink It straight" , & So many more Classic HITS that he will be remembered By. In 2009, Singer/songwriter shocked the world when he Cut off something he was very well known for, His beautiful Long braids. Luckily, He's gorgeous - So his haircut didn't damage Him, Infact It made him Look even More appealing & Grown up. Trey, As we all know - deserves his # 1 spot. We'll continue to see more of him In 2010, doing Bigger & Better things with his musical sounds. Enhancing, tweaking & perfecting his music. Can't wait to see what He has planned Next!

Written By Braszii.

Expectations too high for Golfing professional Tiger woods?

As we've heard this story escalate, Reporters have found ways to ruin & Demolish Tigers career. Yes, I know he did that All on His own, But I personally believe : What happens In his personal Life should stay In his personal Life. Everybody's so Focused on what he's doing. What makes me even More upset, Is all of His endorsments backing Out on Him. I understand the Man commited Adultry, But His sex Life has absolutley Nothing to do with His golfing career. I myself find Golf as a stress reliever. If I'm angry or upset; that first Blow to the ball Is what makes everything else seem to perhaps just float away. In this case, He can't escape It.. People expect way too much from celebrities. Just because they have Millions of dollars doesn't meant they're not as average as you. They may not be juggling with the cable & phone bills. But they do have their own fair share of Stress. Living A glamorous Life Is apparently harder than It looks. If It weren't then the paparazzi would have No stories to tell! Lately, I've been reading Up alot on this story & the many "mistresses" of Tiger woods. Honestly, There's no way his wife didn't know. She had to have known for years... Fact of the matter Is, they do Have children. Nobody knows what their Home life was Like , Just like Nobody knows what happens behind closed doors. People like to speculate, point fingers & judge.. Yet don't have the sympathy for a minute to THINK of WHY he would "hurt" his wife In such a way. I've seen people married who don't love each other / can't barely stand to be near each other but are for the sake of their FAMILY. & That in itself, Is extremely stressful. I wish Tiger the best In his years to come.. WE ALL Make mistakes, It's what Makes Life so Intriguing. We learn from them, we grow from them - & then we Move on.

Written By Braszii.

Bow Wows Early Retirement 
Shad Greggory Moss - aka Bow wow speaks on his Early Retirement from the rap game at age 21. Rapper feels as though he's done all that he can possibly do In the rap game, and Is ready for a New yet Fresh start. He claims to have a true love for acting & will soon be starting up his acting career. Bow wow has been making music since the age of 5 and has been killing It since. On his behalf, I think this will most deffinately be a change for him In a good way. The world Is ready to see him In a different Light, & I sincerely hope - everything turns out being the best for him. Early In the year, to knock everybody off - He joined Lilwaynes record label YoungMoney for his Encore album / Last Rap CD he claims he'll be making. I believe He'll still be underground and on mixtapes & features. So, with all that being said: make sure you cop his New cd when It drops, I think Its one of the many most anticipated* & Be on the lookout for Movies to come that he just May be starring In.
Written By Braszii.

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Chiwetel Ejiofor: Starring in the New movie "2012"

" London native Chiwetel Ejiofor has played everything from an exiled doctor working as a hotel concierge and cab driver in 'Dirty Pretty Things' to an intergalactic assassin in 'Serenity' and a drag queen trying to save a footwear factory in 'Kinky Boots'. He's also worked with such esteemed directors as Spike Lee, Ridley Scott, Woody Allen, David Mamet and Steven Spielberg to name a few.  Ejiofor's latest project, '2012' gives him a front row seat for the end of the world and I had a chance to speak to him a few weeks ago about his role in Roland Emmerich's epic apocalyptic adventure. " credit to : http://www.latinoreview.com/news/exclusive-1-1-with-chiwetel-ejiofor-on-2012-8494

Nicki Minaj & Gucci Mane

The baddest Chick in the game right now Ms. Nicki minaj & the most " flossy " Gucci mane. Two of the best out right now. Both upcoming rappers. Both became famous off of mix-tapes. Nicki Minaj was on a mix-tape DVD called " The Come Up " when she got discovered by president / CEO of Young Money Records - Lil Wayne a couple years back. & Ever since she's taken off from there without any warning. With her vigorous sex appeal & way with words she's up there next to Remy Ma & Foxy Brown. She has no problem letting female rappers know that shes coming to take over; with her witty sense of humor. She runs with a crew she named " The Harajuku Barbies " and to top it off she has the chain screaming BARBIE in flawless diamonds. Fair to say, shes the leading lady of Young Money & At the top of the hip hop game.

 Gucci on the other-hand is a whole different story. He previously got caught up with former gang ties he had before becoming famous & was incarcerated for quite some time. After getting out, Gucci mane went HARD in the studio making mix-tape after mix-tape - making his name KNOWN in the underground. Then of course, Just recently he hit commercial radios & broadcast stations with his latest jump-off " WASTED " and got everybody hype. Previous to that track; He had done a song with Lil Wayne called " steady mobbin" which OF COURSE, he killed the song when his verse came up. But, sadly - when it seemed as though his career was FINALLY taking off; on Nov. 12, 2009; Gucci mane was arrested & incarcerated for violation of Probation. People representing him stated that he will most likely get 12 months in jail; but due to the terms he may only have to do 6 months in prison. With that being said " FREE GUCCI ! "

Written By Braszii.

" FREE The Wave " ( asap ! )

" Max B was found guilty of manslaughter and conspiracy to commit robbery Tuesday (June 9, 2009) after a judge ruled over the case in a New Jersey courtroom. According to the rapper's attorney, Gerald Saluti, Max B was found guilty on nine of the 11 counts he was facing. The charges came from a theft that involved the rapper, Kelvin Leerdam and Max's former girlfriend Gina Conway. Conway eventually turned state's evidence against the men. Max B was accused of leading the trio to steal upward of $30,000.00 from two men. The incident went bad - however, when Leerdam allegedly shot one of the men. Conway testified in the case that Max B wasn't present at a hotel room he rented at the time of the crime. "They found him guilty of conspiracy to commit robbery. There's a very specific definition of robbery, by force," Saluti explained. "Then they found him guilty of aggravated manslaughter, instead of unintentional murder. The theory on which they convicted him leads to conspiracy. "It's boggling," Saluti continued. "The witness said the plan wasn't to rob but to go in there and steal money with no one there." Saluti previously filed a motion on Max's behalf to separate his case from Leerdam's since the second man was allegedly believed to be the shooter. The attorney said he feels his client should be facing LESSER charges based on the evidence presented. The news is undoubtedly a huge disappointment for Max's fans, who have been waiting for his official album since he was introduced as a member of Jim Jones' Byrd Gang crew some years ago. Max made immediate impact on the chorus of Cam'ron's Jay-Z dis record "You Gotta Love It." Jones featured Max on a string of underground songs and mixtapes until Max was arrested on his charges in 2006. Jones posted $2 million bond, but things fell apart between the two from what Jones called disloyalty and jealousy. Max claimed he was wronged financially. & with the death of his close friend " STACK BUNDLES " he felt as though, Jones was the reason for his unplanned & unaccidental death. That feud is one that may never be resolved, despite max B still being signed to Jones' record label. Max B has kept himself visible in the streets. He has hundreds of songs on mixtapes circulating over the past few years. Max formed an alliance with French Montana, who built a strong name for himself in the mixtape and street-DVD circuits. Max and French branched out to work with G-Unit's Tony Yayo, who claims he would have loved to sign max B if he could get the business straightened out with Jones. Besides more mixtapes, Max had a deal with Amalgam Digital to release an LP, which has yet to see the light of day. He was finally sentenced to 25 years; Just when everything was finally getting better for him. "

Source : MTV news

to see " mixtape mondays feat. max b & french " click here -» " http://www.mtv.com/news/articles/1613539/20090609/diplomats_rap_.jhtml "

The Gorgeous Whitney Houston - Back on track.

This impecable woman, disscussed her battles with drugs & the hard marriage life. She spoke on the fact that she felt overwhelmed which led her to the constant use & later addiction to drugs. I personally believe that this woman is outstanding. She's only human, & like my sister says " LIFE happens " ; & she chose to deal with it in her own way. I felt impowered to put her on the site just because she's the defenition of DIVA & FIGHTER. The best two words I could say fit her. Nobody could ever talk bad about Whitney Houston, because shes been around for so long. She's an entertainer - that's what she does " entertains " . If people don't like what she does in her spare time then they shouldn't pay her any attention. She might have done drugs for that moment but shes recovering - Knowing & Understanding that you have a problem & actually seeking help for it is a start. But we ALL have things that get us on that " temporary trip " or something we're addicted to. Everybody's addiction isn't illegal but her's just so happened to be. If you haven't seen the interview of Whitney & Oprah then you should definately jump on that! I'm not sure, but I think people are going to start seeing alot MORE of whitney in the coming years. Albums, Movies - beware, because " SHE'S BACK! "
Written By Braszii.

Travis Payne; Michael jackson's choreographer - His feelings & the interview about the new movie " This Is It ".

One of the individuals working on the big project, also served as editor of the film. His name is Travis Payne, who has worked with both director Kenny Ortega and Jackson since 1990, when his dance video of himself led to his big break (at age 19!) as part of Janet Jackson's 'Rhythm Nation 1814' World Tour. He was soon working on Jackson's "Dangerous Tour," and began to see the entire creative process close-up. Since then, Payne has worked with hit makers including Madonna, Lenny Kravitz, Jennifer Lopez, Ricky Martin and Beyonce. He was brought back to work with Jackson on the comeback tour and worked everyday with him until his untimely death.

Click on the link below to follow up & get more information and pictures on travis payne & michael jackson. The site also includes his feelings on the new movie " this is it " in sweet & loving memory of the worlds most caring & most missed man - the UNFORGETABLE Mr. Michael Jackson.

http://www.bvonmovies.com/2009/10/23/choreographer-travis-payne-interview-michael-jacksons-this-is-it/

Feelings on the situation....?!

When this story first came to my attention a few months back, it didn't necessarily SHOCK me like it shocked most people. Honestly, I have absolutely no respect or sympathy towards Rihanna in this situation or should I say, any Grown Black Woman who puts herself in such unnecessary predicaments. When the story first came out, newspapers and news stations broadcasted that this was NOT the first time or second time that chris brown MAY have intentionally hurt her & vice versa, rihanna has had her moments when she beat him too! In the eyes of the outside - this relationship seems so out of the ordinary SO incredibly interesting & Spicy. But the fact of the matter is, nobody knows what went on in that relationship & No one will ever know what happened in that car the night things happened to go so very wrong. All they have is rihannas word - & Personally nobody should be listening to anybody who doesnt have half a NORMAL brain. Black couples are in my opinnion sometimes the most ignorant - not to say any other race isnt, but with black americans its almost Expected! Not only did chris brown manage to become a Statistic - but he also managed to show people he himself is Only human & WILL step out of line quick. Which brings me to the next question about his anger. Storys were told that chris had a very abusive father & watched as his mother was beaten on several occasions. If rihanna was smart like chris's mother she wouldve realized the problem FIRST hand & moved as quickly out of the realationship as possible. I don't believe that LOVE should equal PHYSICAL pain, but apparently rihanna was struck by idiocracy! Don't get me wrong, Chris brown is 100% wrong for his actions, but the way people made it seem was really out of control. Like seriously, they played ONLY rihanna on the radio for a good 2 months after the incident & Just recently started playing chris brown again. There isnt another r&b / hip hop artist out there right now that can do better, so they have no choice BUT to play his music. I just think PEOPLE need to get a life! Rihanna needs to get a new career IMMEDIATELY because obviously she isnt doing a very good job at the one she has.. & Chris brown needs to continue pleasing his fans in such ways that hes shown... But enough about my opinion! How do YOU feel about the situation? Email me & let me know !! Laydiebraszii041@aim.com *

Life Without Black People
A very humorous and revealing story is told about a group of white people who were fed up with African Americans, so they joined together and wished themselves away. They passed through a deep dark tunnel and emerged in sort of a twilight zone where there is an America
without black people.

At first these white people breathed a sigh of relief.

'At last', they said, 'no more crime, drugs, violence and welfare.'

All of the blacks have gone! Then suddenly, reality set in. The 'NEW
AMERICA ' is not America at all - only a barren land.
1. There are very few crops that have flourished because the nation was built on a slave-supported system.

2. There are no cities with tall skyscrapers because Alexander Mils, a black man, invented the elevator, and without it, one finds great difficulty reaching higher floors.

3. There are few if any cars because Richard Spikes, a black man, invented the automatic gearshift, Joseph Gambol, also black, invented the Super Charge System for Internal Combustion Engines, and Garrett A. Morgan, a black man, invented the traffic signals.

4. Furthermore, one could not use the rapid transit system because its procurer was the electric trolley, which was invented by another black man, Albert R. Robinson.

5. Even if there were streets on which cars and a rapid transit system could operate, they were cluttered with paper because an African American, Charles Brooks, invented the street sweeper..

6. There were few if any newspapers, magazines and books because John Love invented the pencil sharpener, William Purveys invented the fountain pen, and Lee Barrage invented the Type Writing Machine and W. A. Love invented the Advanced Printing Press. They were all, you guessed it, Black.

7. Even if Americans could write their letters, articles and books, they would not have been transported by mail because William Barry invented the Postmarking and Canceling Machine, William Purveys invented the Hand Stamp and Philip Downing invented the Letter Drop.

8. The lawns were brown and wilted because Joseph Smith invented the Lawn Sprinkler and John Burr the Lawn Mower.

9. When they entered their homes, they found them to be poorly ventilated and poorly heated. You see, Frederick Jones invented the Air Conditioner and Alice Parker the Heating Furnace. Their homes were also dim. But of course, Lewis Lattimer later invented the Electric Lamp, Michael Harvey invented the lantern, and Granville T. Woods invented the Automatic Cut off Switch. Their homes were also filthy because Thomas W. Steward invented the Mop and Lloyd P. Ray the Dust Pan.

10. Their children met them at the door - barefooted, shabby, motley and unkempt.  But what could one expect? Jan E. Matzelinger invented the Shoe Lasting Machine, Walter Sammons invented the Comb, Sarah Boone invented the Ironing Board, and George T. Samon invented the Clothes Dryer.

11. Finally, they were resigned to at least have dinner amidst all of this turmoil. But here again, the food had spoiled because another Black Man, John Standard invented the refrigerator.


12. And when they got hungery and went out to dinner they could not get any C-food Ala-Tasha. because that right,Chef Robert Pinkney created that food.

Now, isn't that something? What would this country be like without the contributions of African-Americans?

Martin Luther King, Jr. said, 'by the time we leave for work, millions of Americans have depended on the inventions from the minds of Blacks.'

Black history includes more than just slavery, Frederick Douglass, Martin Luther King, Jr., Malcolm X, and Marcus Garvey & W.E.B. Dubois.

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That Flavor In Your Ear ;)

Brasziis HOT picks .

PROMOTE YOUR GOOD OR SERVICE ON THIS WEB SITE: Contact kjrogers98@aol.com

 

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Facebook Pastor Only Plans to Leave Post Temporarily

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Facebook Pastor Cedric Miller

Cedric Miller is known nationally as "the Facebook Pastor," after telling his congregation to ban Facebook in order to save their marriages. Miller went as far as telling his church leaders that if they didn't give up their Facebook accounts, he would remove them from their posts.

It turned out that Pastor Miller may have had his own reasons for fearing Facebook. The popular social-networking site may have been linked to the affair the pastor had involving his male assistant and his wife. Whether it was swinging, bisexual activity or something else, most of us know that a preacher shouldn't be "getting freaky" at bible study (which is where much of the sex allegedly took place, according to court testimony).

Pastor Miller took his humiliation like a man. In a public display of what seemed to be sincere contrition, the pastor told his church that he would step down in response to his being exposed for living a double life. The problem was that his reaction was only temporary: Rather than giving up his post permanently, the pastor plans to leave for just a little while and return in 90 days. In other words, it seems that he plans on stepping down long enough for the controversy to cool itself off, and then it may be back to business as usual.

Miller, who is the pastor at the Living Word Christian Fellowship Church in Neptune Township, N.J., received a vote of confidence as the church's spiritual leader before making his decision public. He also said that he came to his conclusion after "prayer and thoughtful consideration" by the members of the board, according to the church's spokesperson.

Miller must be given credit for attempting to take a stand against something that does play a role in undermining the sanctity of the marital bond in quite a few families across America. There is nothing wrong with a person learning from his mistakes and using that as credibility when admonishing the actions of others. It would have been better had Miler "fessed up" from the beginning, rather than trying to appear holier than thou.

The challenge for Pastor Miller, however, is that he can't stop people from using Facebook. Facebook, and sites like it, are never going to go away. The only thing we can do is learn to live in a world where human beings are interconnected. Telling people to stop using Facebook and other sites is like telling men to stop going to work because women are going to be there.

As for his own personal choices, I openly wonder if Pastor Miller might be perceived to be a hypocrite for having a zero-tolerance policy toward members of his church who possess flaws that are not nearly as dramatic as his own. I also fear for the black community, which puts a tremendous amount of faith in quite a few spiritual leaders whose spirits are not nearly as pure as we are led to believe. Rather than being told what to believe by our so-called spiritual leaders, perhaps it makes sense for us to simply think for ourselves.




 

Mr. Rogers Personal Opinion;

I think the pastor is gay and his wife is covering for him it happens all the time and will come out eventually .  I am so tired of people hiding behind the collar and doing dispicable acts daily luring people and making them feel guilty and stripping them of all they have.  I am not condeming the clergy but some of these parasites should not be allowed to continue.

Sincerely,

Mr. Rogers 

Last Updated: Saturday July 17th, 2010

Bill Cosby, A Man Of Much Respect Due to His Historic comedic Acts & Help efforts towards society. I wonder how much "Respect" he deserves after a speech so Oblivious & Disturbing Such as this. . .

' They're standing on the corner & they can't speak English. I can't even talk the way these people talk: Why you ain't, Where you is, What he drive, Where he stay, Where he work, Who you be... And I blamed the kid until I heard the mother talk. And then I heard the father talk. Everybody knows it's important to speak English except these knuckleheads. You can't be a doctor with that kind of crap coming out of your mouth In fact you will never get any kind of job making a decent living. People marched and were hit in the face with rocks to get an Education, and now we've got these knuckleheads walking around. The lower economic people are not holding up their end in this deal. These people are not parenting. They are buying things for kids. $500 sneakers for what? And they won't spend $200 for Hooked on Phonics. I am talking about these people who cry when their son is standing there in an orange suit. Where were you when he was 2? Where were you when he was 12? Where were you when he was 18 and how come you didn't know that he had a pistol? And where is the father? Or who is his father? People putting their clothes on backward: Isn't that a sign of something gone wrong? People with their hats on backward, pants down around the crack, isn't that a sign of something? Isn't it a sign of something when she has her dress all the way up and got all type of needles [piercing] going through her body? What part of Africa did this come from?? We are not Africans. Those people are not Africans; they don't know a thing about Africa..... I say this all of the time.  It would be like white people saying they are  European-American. That is totally stupid. I was born here, and so were my parents and grand parents and, very likely my great grandparents.  I don't have any connection to Africa, no more than white Americans have to  Germany,  Scotland,  England, Ireland, or the  Netherlands.  The same applies to 99 percent of all the black Americans as regards to  Africa .  So stop,  already! ! ! With names like Shaniqua, Taliqua and Mohammed and all of that crap ......... and all of them are in jail. Brown or black versus the Board of Education is no longer the white person's problem. We have got to take the neighborhood back. People used to be ashamed. Today a woman has eight children with eight different 'husbands' -- or men or whatever you call them now. We have millionaire football players who cannot read. We have million-dollar basketball players who can't write two paragraphs. We, as black folks have to do a better job. Someone working at Wal-Mart with seven kids, you are hurting us. We have to start holding each other to a higher standard.. We cannot blame the white people any longer.'

You would think a man of his stature would word his speech better! I'm a 17 year old Black Female Teen living in America today & I can honestly say I see where He's coming from, But in the Long run he's wrong. How dare a man such as He, Speak down towards his fellow Black people. In the economic struggles we already Face, a Man that smart has the nerve to shoot us in The foot while we're already down. He has no acknowledgement of why Teens do what they do or why they talk how they talk. It's OUR time, OUR generation. WE Make PEOPLE in general famous. We make the actors, the rappers, the singers, the comedians money. Everytime We pay for there mixtapes, Or go see their movie. We are what is making this planet spin. Whether or not ONE man deters our own common sense is Besides the point. How does bill Cosby know if that woman at wal-mart with 8 kids Isn't a woman who took them In from foster care And is trying to give them a better life? Why belittle someones opinnions just because they aren't the same as yours? How could a Parent possibly know what their child is doing 24-7? They could say one thing and mean the exact opposite. Teens of My Age, Are all looking for one thing and that's money. We have our own slang, We wear clothes how we want as our own freedom of Speech. Just as He did when He was A teen, What is that song they made in His time? " Express Yourself " .... Why It's such a big deal to him, Confuses me completely. Not all Black teens are as he speaks of, & If we are - some are mentally trained to turn it off and turn it back on again. We might say YO, and whatspopping wit you, Where he be at, Where he from - this that and the other thing.. But When It comes time for an Interview, we Know how to turn It off. We're supposed to be able to live Free; Bill Cosby Is not the president, He has No right to pass Judgement on something he has No knowledge about. Half the statements made were outrageous. It's not JUST black teens, If you haven't noticed America In General is probably the biggest Melting Pot On the face of the Earth. White Teens, Spanish Teens, Cape-verdean Teens, Japenese Teens, Asian Teens, Haitian Teens, African Teens, African American Teens - We ALL do the same thing! So To some this up, Mr. bill Cosby, We're hip that YOU MAD CUS WE STYLIN' ON YOU! But Get over It. FOR REAL! This Isn't a Jayz song, we will not be forever Young. The Generation will change, when It's time for it to change. He of all people should know you can't repremand fate.

 _ SIGNED x BRASZII *

" It's a Big crazy world out there; Not too many reliable souls. Life is full of adventure and growth. & At times we can't help but to resent our past, Yet we Live to learn how to embrace who we've become. There's an economic struggle, A neverending battle against race, And a curse against mankind.. Still I wonder who will be the one to Save us. To bring hope to future generations. Restore this planet, & Bring It back to health as If It were their own child. For whatever reason, we are All born to accomplish something. Overcoming our hardest battles Is what makes this Entire experience worth while. You ultimately have a choice In society.. To Lead, or to simply fall into statistics. So let me ask You this. . Where do You fall Into place? " _ By [ Braszii ]; Email Me at LaydieBraszii041@aim.com

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I myself, Don't usually do this : & YES, this is a website I've built based on Famous Lives & Glamour. But, I want to know how You feel on LIFE & what YOUR life Is like.. What are You're Outlooks on It? How could We make things better for Future Lives ( meaning our children / the next generation ) to come? Send Me an Email at LaydieBraszii041@aim.com & tell me How YOU feel life IS & what's Going on in the Society that surrounds us.
Me Personally, I don't know how to feel anymore. I Just barely know what to say. I could care less about peoples feelings towards me, YET : at the end of the day : All the hatred towards Me, Is what's going to be the cause of My demise. Happiness Is a word I rarely use; & I thought I finally found It.. But being In a relationship completely KILLS that happiness, not necessarily Increases It. Long Distance relationships are the worst & are only Fit for Heavy weights. You Give up Everything To be with someone for Little amounts of time; Every here & there. Whattever! >:-O I'm starting to re-evaluate & second guess alot of things In this Life. I Have absolutely NO clue where I'm supposed to be heading.. Maybe once I find some grip - I can. But for now, all I'm seeing Is Flashing colors. Spinning around & Going completely Heywire - But that's all In my Head. Red for pain, Orange for Relaxation, Black for STRESS, White For TIME I can't have back.. In the event of my Demise, I feel as though It will be painless. Quick & Easy; so I won't feel a thing. For people who fear DEATH, have absolutely NO clue about life. Honestly. When I was young I used to cry about how scared I was & Questioned, why do we have to die.. what was after "Life"? Nobody knows. I soon came to the realization that , That's what we Live to do. There's NO definite answer for why These things happen. They just do. It's mother nature; Apart of the phases - The cycle of Life Itself. Something We have NO control over. Alot of people might call me crazy, But that's simply because they don't understand My train of thought , Neither are they willing too.. My Insight is OUT there, forreal. My thought process could never be "the norm." I've been through too much to just BE that for the rest of the world. BUT People are VERY judgemental. & I personally, don't need that - Therefore I keep most or all of my thoughts to myself. What to do, what to do.. Venting is something I'm good at.. I Guess people get to "figure me out" through these things.. If they actually took the time out before making their careless assumptions. It's fine If It's Ignored. Alot of the IMPORTANT things are.. This morning when I woke up My dad called Me a Genius. I instantly started thinking of Arestotle, Galileo Gaelilei, Johann Sebastion Bach, Mark Twain, Kurt Cobain, Edgar Allen Poe, Charles Dickenson, Emily Dickenson, Albert Einstein - The list goes on & on. Nobody ever understood Those people - Ever. Albert Einstein Barely even Made It In School.. Yet He Invented something The average person couldn't even come up with. Pure Brillance Undefined. I have alot of Faith in Myself - But when It comes to the world, I have mixed feelings towards It. I, 1Body & 1soul , 1mind & 1heart - can only do SO much. There's over 6 billion people In this world, ONE person WILL not make a change throughout the planet In a year or Less. It will Take YEARS all in itself for this planet to change, & It will take more than ONE person. I have yet to see change; But political parties, & Scientists blame society. IN reality - their Not doing their job to the best of their ability. Don't you think If people knew what was Really going on, they would atleast Try to make the effort? Lol, Like the boy who cried wolf. After you LIE so many times, OR try to keep things from people; People start to question Everything & Soon enough Loose Intrest completely - In any instance. Ugh, But these are the ways of the world right. Something we all Should be SO happy to have.. Just Imagine this - When Your Bones are all that's Left to represent Your name Or that You even existed On this planet; & Your body Is pure dust; When You have NO brain to think or heart pounding In Your chest - Will You Really remember this Life? When You finally pass on to the next Life, Will what happens IN the real world affect you In any way.. I doubt It Highly. Change will come when It comes, It's obviously Not being rushed Or forced onto. Everyone's so Scared about 2012. If It was Really going to be the end of the world, You would know. This earth would be Crashing down & Falling out of orbit. It's not a fact of Science Or Biology Or For astronomers to try & figure out. It's simple & Plain common sense. Even If It were to be the end for all Civilians, Does It really matter? You (DO) have 2 Years Notice: So make the best out of Your Todays & Be thankful for the tomorrow that You DO still have. The whole point to this Is.. ONE Fact: Only the strong survive.. & The rest are left for the others to deal with. Meaning This LIFE will kill you, If you Don't kill IT first.

LIVE LIFE ABUNDANTLY.
written by Braszii 

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