Archives for : January2014

Angela Stanton: The Truth!

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In an official statement Stanton wrote:

“In 2012, I released my personal memoir, Lies of a Real Housewife: Tell the Truth and Shame the Devil. In the book, I detailed the struggles I faced as a young woman drawn to the temptations of crime and the false glamour it affords. I alone am responsible for the mistakes I made as a young woman. Yet, I have felt a certain sense of anger toward the people who used me during that period of my life. Certain individuals found me at a time when I was vulnerable and searching for friendship, and used those traits to lure me into doing their bidding.

I read with sadness the news that Phaedra Parks’ husband, Apollo Nida, was arrested for alleged schemes that are remarkably similar to those that lured me years ago. I was troubled to learn that the alleged crimes involved the use of a vulnerable woman to carry out the schemes. The story is all too familiar to me. I sincerely hope that Ms. Parks has not been part of his alleged crimes. I hope that she, like I, learned from her mistakes.

Although tragic, the news of Apollo’s arrest has been vindicating for me. Since I published my book, Phaedra Parks has used her wealth and influence in an attempt to silence me. She filed lawsuits against my publisher, and threatened them with years of expensive litigation if they did not cease publication of my book. As a result, I lost nearly all the royalties I was owed. Ms. Parks used her influence in the media to discredit my story and smear my name, casting me as a delusional liar on the pages of popular blogs. After going to prison and losing everything, my story was all I had left, and she took that from me.

Pattie Boyd: The Ultimate Trouphy!

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Patricia Anne “Pattie” Boyd (born 17 March 1944) is a model, photographer and author from the United Kingdom, best known as the first wife of both George Harrison and Eric Clapton. In August 2007, she published her autobiography Wonderful Tonight. Her photographs of Harrison and Clapton, titled Through the Eye of a Muse have been exhibited in Dublin, Sydney, Toronto, Moscow, London and throughout the United States.

Boyd was born on 17 March 1944, in Taunton, Somerset, and was the first child to Colin Ian Langdon Boyd, and Diana Frances Boyd (née Drysdale), who were married on 14 September 1942. The Boyds moved to West Lothian, Scotland where her brother Colin was born in 1946. The Boyd family moved to Guildford, Surrey, where her sister, Jenny Boyd was born in 1947.Boyd’s youngest sister, Paula, was born at Nakuru hospital, Kenya, in 1951.The Boyds lived in Nairobi, Kenya, from 1948 to 1953, after her father’s discharge from the Royal Air Force. Boyd’s parents divorced in 1952, and her mother married Robert Gaymer-Jones in February 1953, in Tanganyika (now Tanzania). The family returned to England where Boyd gained two half brothers, David J.B. (b. 1954) and Robert, Jr. (b. 1955).

Boyd attended Hazeldean School in Putney, the St Agnes and St Michael Convent Boarding School in East  Grinstead, and St Martha’s Convent in Hadley Wood, Hertfordshire (where she received three GCE O level passes in 1961). Boyd moved to London in 1962 and worked as a shampoo girl at Elizabeth Arden‘s salon, until a client who worked for a fashion magazine inspired her to begin work as a model.

Boyd began her fashion career in 1962, modelling in London, New York and Paris. She was photographed by David Bailey and Terence Donovan, and appeared on the cover of Vogue. Boyd appeared on the cover of the UK and Italian editions of Vogue magazine in 1969, with other popular models of the day, such as Twiggy, who based her early modelling appearance on Boyd. Boyd was asked by Gloria Stavers to write a column for 16 Magazine, and appeared in a TV commercial promoting Smith’s crisps. She was cast for A Hard Day’s Night, where she met George Harrison.

Boyd exhibited her photos of Harrison and Clapton, at the San Francisco Art Exchange on Valentine’s Day 2005, in a show entitled Through the Eye of a Muse. The exhibition appeared in San Francisco and London during 2006, and in La Jolla, California in 2008.Boyd’s photography was shown in Dublin and in Toronto in 2008 and at the Blender Gallery in Sydney, Australia and in Almaty, Kazakhstan in 2009 and 2010. Her exhibit “Yesterday and Today: The Beatles and Eric Clapton” was shown in Santa Catalina Island in California, and at the National Geographic Headquarters in Washington, DC in 2011.

In 2007 Boyd published her autobiography, which includes some of her photographs, titled Wonderful Today in the UK; in the US it was published with the title Wonderful Tonight: George Harrison, Eric Clapton, and Me. In the United States, Boyd’s book debuted at the top of the New York Times Best Seller list.

1964, Boyd met Harrison during the filming of A Hard Day’s Night, in which she was cast as a schoolgirl.[12][23] Her only line in the film was asking “Prisoners?”, but she later appeared in the “I Should Have Known Better” segment. Boyd was “semi-engaged” to photographer Eric Swayne at the time, thus declining a date proposal from Harrison. Several days later, after ending her relationship with Swayne, she went back to work on the film and Harrison asked her out on a date for a second time. The couple went to a private gentlemen’s club called the Garrick Club, chaperoned by the Beatles’ manager, Brian Epstein. According to Boyd, one of the first things Harrison said to her on the film set was: “Will you marry me? Well, if you won’t marry me, will you have dinner with me tonight?”

Boyd had her first encounter with LSD in early 1965 when the couple’s dentist, John Riley, secretly laced her coffee with the drug during a dinner party at his home.[As she was getting ready to leave with Harrison, John and Cynthia Lennon, Riley told them that he had spiked their drinks and tried to convince them to stay.Outside, Boyd was in an agitated state from the drug and threatened to break a store window, but Harrison pulled her away. Later, when Boyd and her group were in an elevator on their way up to the Ad Lib club, they mistakenly believed it was on fire.

Later that year, Boyd moved into Kinfauns with Harrison.The couple were engaged on 25 December 1965, and married on 21 January 1966, in a ceremony at a registry office in Ashley Road, Epsom, with Paul McCartney as best man. Later, the couple went on a honeymoon in Barbados. In September, Boyd flew with Harrison to Bombay to visit sitar virtuoso Ravi Shankar, before returning to London on 23 October 1966. The following year, Boyd attended the Our World broadcast of “All You Need Is Love“.

Through her interest in Eastern mysticism and her membership in the Spiritual Regeneration Movement, she inspired all four Beatles to meet the Indian mystic Maharishi Mahesh Yogi in London on 24 August 1967, which resulted in a visit to the Maharishi’s seminar in Bangor, the following day. Boyd accompanied Harrison on the Beatles’ visit to the Maharishi’s ashram in Rishikesh, India, in February 1968.In March 1970, Boyd moved with Harrison from Kinfauns to Friar Park, a Victorian neo-Gothic mansion, in Henley-on-Thames.

In 1973, Boyd’s marriage to Harrison began to fail and she had an affair with Faces guitarist Ronnie Wood. She separated from Harrison in 1974 and their divorce was finalised on 9 June 1977.Boyd said her decision to end their marriage and leave Harrison was based largely on his repeated infidelities, culminating in an affair with Ringo Starr‘s wife Maureen, which Boyd called “the final straw”. Boyd characterised the last year of her marriage as “fuelled by alcohol and cocaine”, and claimed “George used coke excessively, and I think it changed him … it froze his emotions and hardened his heart.”According to Boyd, Harrison’s songs “I Need You” and “Something” were written for her.

Marriage to Eric Clapton

In the late 1960s, Clapton and Harrison became close friends, and began writing and recording music together. At this time Clapton fell in love with Boyd.His 1970 album with Derek and the Dominos, Layla and Other Assorted Love Songs, was written to proclaim his love for her, particularly the hit song “Layla“.When Boyd rebuffed his advances late that year, Clapton descended into heroin addiction and self-imposed exile for three years. Boyd moved in with Clapton and married him in 1979

. Her struggles within the marriage were masked by her public image with Clapton. Although Boyd drank and admits to past drug use, she never became an alcoholic or a drug addict like Clapton did. Boyd left Clapton in September 1984, and divorced him in 1988. Her stated reasons were Clapton’s years of alcoholism, as well as his numerous affairs including one with Italian model Lory Del Santo. In 1989, her divorce was granted on the grounds of “infidelity and unreasonable behaviour”.Boyd believes she was the inspiration for the songs: “Bell Bottom Blues” and “Wonderful Tonight“.

 

 

 

Glynn Turman: Happy Birthday!

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Kerry Washington: Happy Birthday!

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IDLEWILD: THE BLACK EDEN OF MICHIGAN

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Some of the venues on the Chitlin’ Circuit were the Cotton Club  and Apollo Theaters in New York City, Regal Theatre in Chicago, Howard  Theatre in Washington, D.C., Fox Theater in Detroit and the Uptown  Theatre in Philadelphia, and a bunch of 1 night stand places in the  middle. A lot of these acts played Idlewild to incorporate some  relaxation along with work. Many of these fabulously talented artists started on the  chitlin’ circuit, including Cab Calloway, Duke Ellington, Ella  Fitzgerald, Lena Horne, Etta James, Billie Holiday, Count Basie, Dorothy  Dandridge, Sammy Davis Jr., Ray Charles, .

The Supremes, Moms Mabley, Ike and Tina Turner ,George Benson, B.B. King, Richard Pryor, Muddy Waters, Aretha Franklin, Smokey Robinson, Redd Foxx, Patti LaBelle, Jimi Hendrix, Gladys Knight & the Pips, The  Temptations, John Lee Hooker, Wilson Pickett, Otis Redding, The Isley  Brothers, and The Four Tops.

( The dancers were love with Otis) And a Motortown Revue Dancer named Donna Dixon….I met Donna on the phone as she called into me for tech support a few years ago. It was just before the holidays and we struck up a long conversation as I fixed her computer problems. Donna was a backup dancer for the Funk Brother’s band.

They were the massively talented studio musicians that created the “Motown Sound” See a bit of their movie:Standing in the Shadows of Motown The touring company of acts from Motown were called the Motor Town Revue.

Idlewild became known as the “Black Eden of Michigan”. As this new black intelligentsia began to settle in the community, some relocated as activists and members of Marcus Mosiah Garvey‘s Universal Negro Improvement Association (UNIA), some as followers of Du Bois’ National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), others as believers of the late Booker T. Washington‘s political machine, and others as potential investors. For the majority of these professionals who brought their families, the idea of land ownership conveyed black social status and membership in this community.

Idlewild gained national stature among African Americans during the period between the World Wars. For example, the Idlewild Land Owners Association had members from over thirty-four states in the country. In addition, the Purple Palace, Paradise Clubhouse, Idlewild Clubhouse, Rosanna Tavern, and Pearl’s Bar provided summer entertainment for tourists and employment opportunities for seasonal and year-round residents in the community. The Pere Marquette Railroad built a branch line to the area by 1923. A post office opened that same year. The Idlewild Fire Department was established, and a host of new entrepreneurs began entering the community. Paradise Palace became McKnight’s Convalescent Home.

Following World War II, Idlewild attracted what some sociologists have labeled the new African American “working” middle class. With the construction of a few paved roads in Idlewild, a reinvestment in the township’s only post office, and greater availability of electricity, a new generation of entrepreneurs began to invest in Idlewild. Phil Giles, Arthur “Big Daddy” Braggs, and a host of other African American businessmen and women took advantage of the market by purchasing property on Williams Island and Paradise Gardens, and began developing these areas into an elaborate nightspot and business center. The cottage started by Albert Cleage in the 1940s was expanded by his sons Louis, Hugh, and Henry.

Many African American entertainers of the period performed in Idlewild. Della Reese, Al Hibbler, Bill Doggett, Jackie Wilson, T-Bone Walker, George Kirby, The Four Tops, Roy Hamilton, Brook Benton, Choker Campbell, Lottie “the Body” Graves, the Rhythm Kings, Sarah Vaughan, Cab Calloway, Louis Armstrong, Dinah Washington, B.B. King, Aretha Franklin, Fats Waller, and Billy Eckstein, and many other performers, entertained both Idlewilders and white citizens in neighboring Lake County townships throughout the 1950s and early 1960s.

Arthur Braggs produced singers, dancers, showgirls, and entertainers, which helped Idlewild to become the “Summer Apollo of Michigan”. Braggs produced the famous “Arthur Braggs Idlewild Revue” which not only performed in Idlewild but was also taken on the road to Montreal, Boston, Kansas City, Chicago, New York, and other cities. Braggs’ show helped Idlewild become a major entertainment center and contributed to the financial prosperity of the area

Donna told me all the gossip “on the road”with the famous groups.She also sadly told me then how Levi Stubbs had just had a large stroke and was wheel chair bound. He would never perform again. Donna suggested I read a book that mentioned her and Donna’s picture is in it twice! The book was written by Dr. Ronald J Stephens an acclaimed expert on African American History at several large universities. It was a fascinating hour long conversation with a woman thathas lived a fascinating life in Detroit. She is still as as sparkling as her costumes were back then

Tallulah Bankhead: Happy Birthday!

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Damion ” World” Hardy: American Gangster Part I

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We all know that when the feds get a new case they construct it based on the lies, half-truths and insinuations perpetrated by rats, cooperators and snitches. It doesn’t matter if what the witnesses are saying out of their mouths is true or not. The feds just roll with it. There is no investigation or nothing substantial going on. The U.S. Attorneys just go by what their snitches are saying. The cooperator’s words become the universal truth that prosecutors base their case off of.  And in reality, the snitches are just saying whatever it is they think the feds want to hear, so they can get out of whatever jam they have managed to get themselves into. Whatever happened to the saying, if you are willing to do the crime be willing to do the time?

Nowadays these so-called hustlers, players and gangsters get themselves into a messy situation where they are facing the prospect of spending decades of their lives behind bars, due to the governments War on Drugs, the mandatory minimums and sentencing guidelines, and it seems they will say just about anything to get out of it. They’ll rat on their friends, their family and in some cases, even their moms. Basically they will tell the feds whatever it is they want to hear. There is no honor in the streets and when dudes flip they say, “Charge it to the game.”

These big multi-layered RICO act cases that the U.S. Attorneys crank out have become more a matter of the feds getting their snitches stories to fit the indictments they have concocted, and less a practice of justice or  looking for the truth. There have been numerous cases we have reported on and exposed here in this magazine that show how the U.S. government works. They are using statutes made to convict Mafia families and Colombian drug lords on inner-city drug crews, who are usually more unorganized chaos than organized crime. The feds have a tendency to identify the ultimate target of their probe before the investigation into their affairs has even started. If someone’s name is ringing in the street than they are a target. Especially in regards to the feds’ tough on crime policies as they apply to their war on minorities. Because let’s keep it real, black people account for 15 percent of the U.S. population, but 50 percent of the prison population. How can those numbers be justified?

The feds are putting cases on people, but let’s face it they aren’t doing it alone. And the snitches play along, doing whatever it takes to get that time cut. They say one thing in their proffers to get people indicted, but once they get on the stand they change the story up, doing whatever the prosecutor wants them to do so they can to get that 5k1 or Rule 35 sentence reduction motion. Ain’t nobody trying to do that 20 year sentence even for their so-called man. In the streets it’s every man for himself. Because the feds don’t play. Dudes get busted and talk that “Death Before Dishonor” shit, but when it comes down to it if they want to get that time cut you know what they are doing. And it has nothing to do with death before dishonor. The prosecutors are the same way; they don’t care what they have to do to get their convictions. They have no sense of honor and justice or right and wrong. They will literally do whatever it takes. The whole profession of attorneys is a pit of snakes and sharks.

Maxims like “Death Before Dishonor” and “Stop Snitching” don’t exist in the drug game and criminal underworld anymore, except in very rare cases. They are ideals of the past, held up in memory and supposedly cherished, but not honored in the present day. Most dudes in the streets are playing a dirty game. When that indictment comes down its literally every man for himself. It’s like the buffet, whoever is first in line gets the best deal. You heard Rick Ross talking about, “I caught a charge,” but nigga you didn’t catch no charge. The drug game to you is a fantasy, a hip-hop video where you fake it to make it. But this shit isn’t entertainment, this isn’t about fronting and stunting, this shit is real life. Dudes are doing life because these crab-ass busters can’t hold their weight. These dudes are talking about how gangsta they are these days but in truth they are suckers. They think it’s a music video or a video game, like they can walk off the set, change the song or hit the do over or reset button when the feds roll in. But there are no do over’s in life, homie. The drug game and life in the streets is not Grand Theft Auto. The truth and reality of it all is much more serious.

The brothers doing life in the pen know what we’re talking about. They are the ones doing hard time. They have lived the life, talked the talk and walked the walk. They are the real gangsters. The ones the rappers rap about and portray themselves to be. Their lifestyles are what the rappers pretend to flaunt. The reality is not MTV Cribs though. Imagine being locked down since 2005 and you haven’t even blew trial or been found guilty yet. Imagine that the feds consider you so dangerous, so gangster that they have held you in limbo, even though they know their charges won’t stick at trial. You’re probably saying this doesn’t happen in the USA. This can’t happen. It won’t happen. We are the land of the free and the home of the brave, but we are here to tell you it can happen and it does. It’s not about justice it’s about Just-Us and in Amerikkka, the kkk mentality still pervades. Case in point, the Cash Money Brothers, straight outta Do or Die Bedstuy, Brooklyn, New York. The borough that brought us the Notorious B.I.G., Jay-Z, Lil’ Kim, Big Daddy Kane and the part of the city that’s known for producing the most thorough gangsters, thugs and hoodlums to grace the streets of the Big Apple.

Cash Money Brothers was a crew formed in Lafayette Gardens Projects in Brooklyn in the early-90s by brothers Damion “World” Hardy and Myron “Wise” Hardy. With their homeboys and associates they allegedly held it down in L.G. and made a name for themselves across the city as a gangster and respected crew, but as various members including World went to prison on different charges the crew became inactive and remained just a legend on the streets of New York. But when a series of murders in the early 2000s were laid at the crew’s doorstep the feds stepped in.

On July 19, 2005, Roslynn Mauskopf, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York announced the filing of federal racketeering and narcotics charges against Damion “World” Hardy and 12 additional leaders, members and associates of the Cash Money Brothers or CMB, what they termed a violent Brooklyn street gang responsible for five murders, widespread crack distribution, the attempted murder of a witness, the kidnapping and attempted robbery of a drug dealer, assault and illegal firearms possession.

The charges and arrests followed an 18 month joint ICE, FBI and NYPD investigation coordinated by the U.S. Attorney’s office as part of an ongoing initiative to eliminate violent street gangs that erode the quality of life in many of the districts neighborhoods. “The arrests announced today strike a devastating blow to a drug gang responsible for spreading fear and violence in one of our communities,” stated U.S. Attorney Mauskopf. “When gangs flood our streets with drugs, assassinate rivals, attempt to murder witnesses and endanger the lives of innocent residents, we will mobilize all resources available, including federal prosecution, through the RICO statute. This case is the latest of several successful joint investigations that demonstrate our commitment to protect public housing from gang violence. We are determined to return control of these communities to their rightful law-abiding residents.”

The government’s investigation revealed that for more than 10 years, CMB members, led by Damion Hardy, controlled narcotics trafficking in the Lafayette Gardens Houses in the Bedford-Stuyvesant section of Brooklyn through violence and intimidation directed against their drug trafficking competitors, innocent civilians and potential witnesses. Hardy, Eric “E-Bay” Moore, Dwayne “Thor” Myers, James “Popsie” Sessoms, Kenwayne “Stro” Jones, Robert “Troub” Footman, Carl “Big Jim” Davis, James “Jimbo” Farrior, Lamont “Sambo” Johnson, Zareh “Puff” Sarkissian, Abubakr Raheem, DJebara “DJ” McMillian and Isheen “Sha” Campbell were charged with conspiring between 1991 and August 2004 to distribute crack cocaine using apartments they controlled in Lafayette Gardens to cook, store and buy the drugs.

“This case is another example of the continuing resolve of the FBI and our partners to reign in gang violence,” FBI agent Mark Mershon said. “The lethal combination of gangs, guns and drugs can terrorize neighborhoods and victimize innocent people. Our purpose fundamentally, is to secure for all New Yorkers the right to be safe and out of harm’s way in their own neighborhoods, whether they live on Park Avenue or in public housing.” World was identified as the founder and leader of CMB with E-Bay, Thor, Popsie and Stro being named as the main members in charge of the crew. The feds also attributed numerous murders to CMB.

Throughout the 1990s the government claims that Ivory “Peanut” Davis was one of CMB’s drug dealing rivals in Lafayette Gardens. On June 12, 1999, Davis’ nephew, Rumel Davis, shot and killed World’s brother Myron “Wise” Hardy during a so called turf dispute while World was locked up in the state. When World got out he investigated the circumstances of his brother’s death and the feds alleged that World and the other members of CMB retaliated by conspiring to murder Peanut and four of his associates. World, E-Bay and Puff were charged with the murder of Darryl “Homicide” Baum on June 10, 2000. This is the same Homicide rapper 50 Cent accused of shooting him nine times earlier that same year in May. 50 Cent also implied in his song Many Men that Hommo was killed in retaliation for shooting him. But like a lot of 50 Cent’s gangsta rap fantasies this tale has yet to be clarified one way or another. So in reality it’s up to the streets to decide.

Homicide was a Brooklyn stick-up kid and gun thug who counted boxer Mike Tyson as a close friend and employer. He was even living at Mike Tyson’s home when he was murdered. The feds concluded that World targeted Homicide because of his association with Peanut. They alleged E-Bay shot Homicide in the back of the head at the corner of Quincy Street and Marcy Avenue and fled in a get-away car driven by Puff. The feds implicated World, E-Bay and Abubakr Raheem in the August 1, 2000 murder of James “JR” Hamilton also. On World’s order E-Bay allegedly shot and killed JR inside a seafood restaurant that Hamilton owned at 102 Sarasota Avenue in Brooklyn. E-Bay than fled in a get-away car driven by Raheem. JR was supposedly killed due to his association with Peanut also.

According to the feds the CMB crew was not finished with their murder spree, more bodies had to drop. At 4:00 a.m. on the morning of August 10, 2000, E-Bay carrying a .40 caliber handgun that belonged to Thor, allegedly shot Peanut twice in the back as he sat in a car parked in front of Club NV, a nightclub on the corner of Spring Street and Hudson Street in Manhattan on World’s orders. Peanut sped away, but lost control of his car and killed an innocent pedestrian. Peanut subsequently died from his gunshot wounds. Both deaths were attributed to World. World’s and CMB’s revenge was complete but the killing continued.

On July 25, 2003, Homicide’s brother, Tyrone “T-Rock” Baum, who the feds alleged World believed was seeking to avenge his brother’s murder, was killed. On World’s order, Thor and Raheem located “T-Rock” by a construction site at Reid Avenue and Hancock Street in Brooklyn where “T-Rock” was shot three times in the head. “These arrests have dismantled a major criminal enterprise that has engaged in murder, kidnapping, extortion and narcotics trafficking. These criminals have threatened our citizens and the well-being of our communities. No more, today, they are off the streets and will be prosecuted for their crimes.” U.S. Attorney Mauskopf said. That is the feds’ line and they are sticking to it but during Raheem’s trial the government’s star witness Edward “Taz” Cooke didn’t testify because the government wouldn’t let him. The other witness Shelby “Moo” Henderson stated that Taz could have been the mastermind behind the murders of JR, Hommo and T-Rock because JR was running numbers and that was a business Taz was involved in, not World. And Hommo and T-Rock allegedly had something to do with Taz’s father getting killed. So Taz had revenge on his mind for Homo and T-Rock. And he wanted to get Brooklyn on lock with the numbers running so he got JR killed and once he got locked up he put the feds on World and got him locked up. Court records also relate that Taz was present at all three murders, not World.

Phil Collins: Happy Birthday!

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Happy Birthday to Singer-Songwriter, Multi-Instrumentalist and Actor best known as a drummer and vocalist for British progressive rock group Genesis.

Philip David Charles “Phil” Collins, RVO (born 30 January 1951) is an English singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and actor best known as a drummer an…d vocalist for British progressive rock group Genesis and as a solo artist.

Collins sang the lead vocals on several chart hits in the United Kingdom and the United States between 1975 and 2010, either as a solo artist or with Genesis. His singles, sometimes dealing with lost love, ranged from the drum-heavy “In the Air Tonight”, dance pop of “Sussudio”, piano-driven “Against All Odds”, to the political statements of “Another Day in Paradise”.

Collins’s professional music career began as a drummer, originally in a band called The Real Thing with Andrea Bertorelli, who later became his first wife. Collins played drums and shared lead vocals (with Brian Chatton) in Flaming Youth which recorded one album, (Ark II). In 1970, he took over drums for Genesis, which had already recorded two albums. In Genesis, Collins originally supplied backing vocals for front man Peter Gabriel, singing lead on only two songs: “For Absent Friends” from 1971’s Nursery Cryme album and “More Fool Me” from Selling England by the Pound, which was released in 1973. Following Gabriel’s departure in 1975, Collins became the group’s lead singer.

His solo career, heavily influenced by his personal life, brought both himself and Genesis commercial success. According to Atlantic Records, Collins’s total worldwide sales as a solo artist, as of 2000, were 150 million. Collins has won numerous music awards throughout his career, including seven Grammy Awards, five Brit Awards—winning Best British Male three times, an Academy Award, and two Golden Globes for his solo work. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a member of Genesis in 2010.

Collins is one of only three recording artists (along with Paul McCartney and Michael Jackson) who have sold over 100 million albums worldwide both as solo artists and (separately) as principal members of a band. When his work with Genesis, his work with other artists, as well as his solo career is totalled, Collins had more top 40 hits on the Billboard Hot 100 chart during the 1980s than any other artist. In 2008, Collins was ranked the 22nd most successful artist on the “The Billboard Hot 100 Top All-Time Artists”.

Mexican Chocolate Pound Cake!

1624-good-text-839x1024Adapted from Souther Living recipe

5 ounces semi-sweet chocolate baking squares, chopped 3 ounces bitter-sweet chocolate baking squares, chopped 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened 1/4 cup Fage 0% fat Greek Yogurt 3/4 cup sugar 5 tbsp. Domino light sugar/stevia mix or another 2/3 cup sugar 2 eggs, at room temperature 1/2 cup egg substitute or equivalent to 2 eggs 1/2 cup chocolate syrup 2 tsp. vanilla extract 1 1/2 cups (180 grams) all purpose, unbleached flour 1 cup (120 grams) whole wheat pastry flour 1 tbsp. ground cinnamon 1/4 tsp. baking soda 1/8 tsp. kosher salt 1 cup buttermilk Powdered Sugar, optional

  1. Preheat the oven to 325°.
  2. In a medium, microwave safe bowl, microwave the chocolate on high for 30 seconds.  Stir the chocolate and continue to microwave at 15 second intervals, stirring after each time until the chocolate is melted and smooth.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat butter and yogurt until creamy.
  4. Gradually add in the sugar and sugar substitute.  Beat for 5 to 7 minutes or until light and fluffy.
  5. Add the eggs one at a time stirring until just incorporated.  Add the egg substitute and beat until just incorporated.
  6. Stir in melted chocolate, chocolate syrup and vanilla until smooth.
  7. In a medium bowl, whisk together all purpose flour, pastry flour, cinnamon, baking soda and salt.
  8. Put mixer on low speed and beat in one third of the flour.  Then beat in half of the buttermilk.  Repeat ending with the final third of the flour.  Beat until just incorporated.
  9. Spray a 14 cup tube pan with baking spray.
  10. Pour batter into the tube pan and even out with a spatula.
  11. Bake for approximately 1 hour and 10 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the middle of the cake comes out clean.
  12. Place pan on a wire rack for 10 to 15 minutes.
  13. Remove the cake from the pan and place directly on the wire rack.  Cool completely.
  14. Serve with powdered sugar.

Nutritional value per serving:

Calories 226    Fat 9 grams    Carbs 34 grams    Protein 5 grams

Moroccan chicken: A Middle Eastern Delight!

 

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Moroccan chicken Yield: 8 servings Ingredients: 3 Tbsp olive oil 2 onions, chopped 6 large garlic cloves, chopped 2 Tbsp Hungarian sweet paprika, any other paprika will do 1 1/2 tsp celtic salt 2 tsps turmeric 2 tsp ground coriander 2 tsp fennel seeds, ground 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper 1 tsp ground cumin 1 tsp ground ginger 2 tomatoes, chopped 2 cups water 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice 12 organic chicken thighs, fat removed 12 organic chicken drumsticks, skinned 1 large eggplant, unpeeled, cut into 1-inch cubes 2 Tbsp marjoram 1/2 cup whole blanched almonds or slivered almonds

Chopped fresh cilantro Directions: Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in heavy large wide pot, this is what I used, over medium heat.

Add onions and garlic. Cook until onions are soft, about 4-5 minutes. Add paprika, salt, turmeric, coriander, fennel, pepper, cumin, and ginger, stir for 1 minute. Add tomatoes, water, and lemon juice and bring to a boil. Arrange all chicken in a single layer in the pot and spoon some sauce over. Bring to a boil.

Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer for 20 minutes. After the 20 minutes turn the chicken over, cover and simmer for 5 minutes longer. Stir eggplant and marjoram into chicken. Carefully stir through and cook uncovered 10 more minutes over medium to high heat until chicken is tender and the eggplant is fully cooked.

Season stew to taste with more lemon juice, salt and pepper if you like. Transfer chicken to a large shallow bowl. Sprinkle with almonds and cilantro. I served this chicken with this Moroccan couscous recipe. I actually doubled the recipe for it.

Recipe adapted from Bon Appetit Read more at http://www.eatgood4life.com/moroccan-chicken/#sddxTmIlkFVFvGUy.99

Sam Lightnin’ Hopkins: 30th Anniversary

 

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Remembering blues guitarist, singer Sam Lightnin’ Hopkins On the anniversary of his death.

1982, American blues guitarist, singer Sam Lightnin’ Hopkins died of cancer aged 70. Influenced Bob Dylan, Stevie Ray Vaughan and Jimi Hendrix. R.E.M. recorded a song named after him on their Document album.

Sam John Hopkins (March 15, 1912 – January 30, 1982), better known as Lightnin’ Hopkins, was an American country blues singer, songwriter, guitarist and occasional pianist, from Houston, Texas. Rolling Stone magazine included Hopkins at number 71 on their list of the 100 greatest guitarists of all time.

Hall & Oates: Today In Music

Hall and oates

On This Day In Music: 1982, Hall and Oates went to No.1 on the US singles chart with ‘I Can Go For That, (No Can Do)’ the duo’s fourth US No.1, also was a number one hit on the R&B and Dance Charts..

Angie Stone: Happy Birthday!

 

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Happy Birthday to R&B and soul singer-songwriter, record producer, and occasional actress Angie Stone…

Angie Stone (born Angela Laverne Brown on January 30, 1961) is an American R&B and soul singer-songwriter, record producer, and occasional actress. She has been nominated for three Grammy Awards. She has been most successful on the R&B charts, with four Top 10 albums, including a number one album, and ten singles, including a Top 10. She has sold over 1.4 millions albums in the U.S. and over 5 millions albums worldwide.

In the early 1980s, Stone (then known as Angie B.) was a member of The Sequence, a female hip hop/funk trio consisting of Cheryl The Pearl and Blondie. They were the second rap group signed to the Sugar Hill Record Label after auditioning for Sylvia Robinson backstage at a Sugar Hill Gang concert in South Carolina.

 

They had a hit in 1980 with “Funk You Up”, which reached number fifteen on the U.S. Top Black Singles chart, and a minor hit with “Monster Jam” featuring rapper Spoonie Gee. The Sequence enjoyed a series of rap hits as the first female rap group during the early years of Hip Hop. Such hits as “Funky Sound (Tear The Roof Off)” kept The Sequence touring with many of the Soul Bands of the day. She then worked with Mantronix, before singing background on Lenny Kravitz’s fifth studio album, 5. The Sequence faded into obscurity as Hip Hop changed from its original party sound to a more gritty street art form.

Stone emerged during the 1990s as part of the R&B trio Vertical Hold which released the popular single “Seems You’re Much Too Busy” as well as two albums: A Matter of Time (1993) and Head First (1995).

In 1996, she teamed up with Gerry DeVeaux (Lenny Kravitz’s cousin) and together with Charlie Mole they formed Devox. They recorded one album, Devox Featuring Angie B. Stone. Released in Japan by Toshiba EMI and selected cuts featured on Gerry DeVeaux’s Front Of The line via the UK Expansion Records, which also included Stone-penned material.

Stone shared songwriting credits on D’Angelo’s first two studio albums, Brown Sugar (1995) and Voodoo (2000), as well as providing backing vocals on tour with him.

Her solo debut album, Black Diamond, was released on September 28, 1999 on Arista Records; the album would eventually be certified gold by the RIAA. She has since also released, on Clive Davis’ J Records, Mahogany Soul on October 16, 2001 (which also went gold), and Stone Love on July 6, 2004.

Much of Stone’s solo material has significant soul influences and features notable samples. For example, her first solo single, “No More Rain (In This Cloud)” samples Gladys Knight & the Pips’ 1972 song “Neither One of Us (Wants to Be the First to Say Goodbye)”, while “Wish I Didn’t Miss You” samples The O’Jays’ 1972 song “Back Stabbers”.

Stone sings the theme song for the UPN/The CW’s sitcom Girlfriends.

During an interview to BBC 1Xtra on August 27, 2006, Stone announced that she had signed to the reworked Stax Records. Her fourth studio album |- The Art of Love & War was released on October 15, 2007. The lead single is “Baby” and features Betty Wright. Its music video features cameo appearances by comedian Mike Epps and America’s Next Top Model, Cycle 3 winner Eva Pigford. The song was nominated for Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals at the 2008 Grammy Awards.

Angie released her fifth studio album titled “Unexpected” in the UK on February 8, 2010 on Stax Records. Speaking to noted UK R&B writer Pete Lewis of the award-winning Blues & Soul in January 2010, she explained her ideas behind ‘Unexpected’: “Being as I’ve delivered four decent albums already, I felt it was safe to switch up and do something different this time. And musically overall I just wanted to have FUN! I wanted to do something that embodied a jam kinda feel, so that we could have some fun in concert and show people everything doesn’t always have to be so serious.”

Veggie: The Recycle Method!

veggies

Here’s an idea to stretch your grocery money and grow your own, organically. Re-growing veggies doesn’t cost a dime. It’s easy to cut off the bottom, re-root and grow your own lettuce, celery, green onions, bok choy, garlic, ginger, basil, potatoes & carrots. If you can think of another veggie to grow this way, please share. Let us know if you’ve tried this and how well it worked!

READ: http://lessonsinfarming.wordpress.com/2013/04/01/re-growing-lettuce/

READ MORE: http://www.buzzfeed.com/arielknutson/vegetables-that-magically-regrow-themselves

Jalen Rose: Happy Birthday!

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Otis & Carla: Secret Lovers?

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According to sources –  during their hay-day as singers the Queen of Memphis soul (Carla Thomas) and Otis Redding were.. quite close for comfort. Sources exclusively spoke to Daily News:

I witnessed Carla & Otis together more than they should’ve been during the times they performed. In studio, out of studio, you name it, they were always together. Carla had a child in her younger days, but never made it public information because it had actually belonged to Otis Redding.  Redding & Thomas had an affair in the beginning, but ended when it became rather hot and people were beginning to ask questions. His wife Velma, eventually after his death severed ties with Thomas because of it.

The source went on to explain that,

Otis cheated on Velma so many  times during the beginning of their marriage before he died. He was having sex with numerous white women while out on the road, some underage girls.  He’d treat the white women so bad, because of the difference in their skin color; it was sickening.  One of his former band members, Mack, had threatened to go to the police if he hadn’t stopped beating on the women he had slept with which resulted in the two arguing over money, who did what, and who was in control.

Dionne Warwick: Business women!

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RHOA: The Real Back Story?

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Real Housewives Of Atlanta’s Apollo, Greg, And Peter all involved in the financial scam? How is Peter Able to open an second Bar One in North Carolina With Kordel Stewart?

Shannon Moakler:Ex Wives Club!

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Reality show veteran Shannon Moakler (ex-wife of Travis Barker) will be joining the Hollywood Exes cast this Spring.

Justin Bieber: Days Are Numbered…..

justin

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