Archives for : April2014

Jade Pinkette-Smith:The Mane Attraction!

 

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I know you all often see my hair in various ways, but what you see in these pics is MY natural hair. I’ve taken care of this mane with CAROL’S DAUGHTER products for over 15 years, specifically…Lisa’s Hair Elixir.

With that said, Carol’s Daughter is still going strong, despite some misleading press, so much so you can now find it in Target, on HSN, Ulta and Sephora inside JCPenny.
My hair would like to say thank you to Lisa Price of Carol’s Daughter for making products that actually nourish the scalp and hair;)

The Cosby Show: The Last Call

 

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“Goodbye Mr. Fish” Season one, episode 2, September 20, 1984. After eight seasons, the Cosby Show Final episode was April 30, 1992.

The Temptations: On This Day In Music

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On this day in music history: April 29, 1968 – “The Temptations Wish It Would Rain”, the sixth studio album by The Temptations is released. Produced by Norman Whitfield, William “Smokey” Robinson, and Henry Cosby, it is recorded at Motown Studio A in Detroit, MI from Mid 1967 – Early 1968.

It will be both the final Temptations album to include lead singer David Ruffin (who will be fired from the group and replaced by Dennis Edwards), and the last to feature Smokey Robinson writing and producing for the group.

The album will spin off three singles including “I Could Never Love Another (After Loving You)” (#1 R&B, #13 Pop) and “I Wish It Would Rain” (#1 R&B, #4 Pop). “The Temptations Wish It Would Rain” will spend three weeks at number one on the Billboard R&B album chart, and number thirteen on the Top 200.

Happy 115th Birthday:Duke Ellington(April 29, 1899-May 24, 1974)

Duke Ellington is an American iconic composer, pianist, and big-band leader. Ellington wrote over 1,000 compositions.

Duke Ellington is an American iconic composer, pianist, and big-band leader. Ellington wrote over 1,000 compositions.

Edward KennedyDukeEllington (April 29, 1899 – May 24, 1974)was an American composer, pianist and bandleader of jazz orchestras. His career spanned over 50 years, leading his orchestra from 1923 until he died.

Though widely considered to have been a pivotal figure in the history of jazz, Ellington himself embraced the phrase “beyond category” as a “liberating principle”, and referred his music to the more general category of “American Music”, rather than to a musical genre such as “jazz”. Born in Washington, D.C., he was based in New York City from the mid-1920s, and gained a national profile through his orchestra’s appearances at the Cotton Club. In the 1930s they toured in Europe.

Some of the musicians who were members of Ellington’s orchestra, such as saxophonist Johnny Hodges, are still, in their own right, considered to be among the best players in jazz, but it was Ellington who melded them into the best-known jazz orchestral unit in the history of jazz. Several members of the orchestra remained members for several decades. A master at writing miniatures for the three-minute 78 rpm record format, Ellington often composed specifically for the style and skills of his individual musicians, such as “Jeep’s Blues” for Hodges, and “Concerto for Cootie” for trumpeter Cootie Williams, which later became “Do Nothing Till You Hear from Me” with Bob Russell‘s lyrics.

Often collaborating with others, Ellington originated over a thousand compositions and his extensive oeuvre is the largest recorded personal jazz legacy, with many of his extant works having become standards. Ellington also recorded songs written by his bandsmen, for example Juan Tizol‘s “Caravan“, and “Perdido“, which brought Spanish tinge to big-band jazz.

After 1941, Ellington collaborated with composer-arranger-pianist Billy Strayhorn, whom he called his “writing and arranging companion”. With Strayhorn, he composed many extended compositions, or ‘suites’, as well as further shorter pieces. Following an appearance at the Newport Jazz Festival, Rhode Island in July 1956, he enjoyed a major career revival and, with his orchestra, embarked on world tours. Ellington recorded for most American record companies of his era at some point, and appeared in several films, scoring several, and composed stage musicals.

Due to his inventive use of the orchestra, or big-band, and thanks to his eloquence and charisma, he is generally considered to have elevated the perception of jazz to an art form on a par with other traditional genres of music. His reputation increased after his death and he was awarded a special Pulitzer Prize in 1999.

Gunther Schuller wrote in 1989: “Ellington composed incessantly to the very last days of his life. Music was indeed his mistress; it was his total life and his commitment to it was incomparable and unalterable. In jazz he was a giant among giants. And in twentieth century music, he may yet one day be recognized as one of the half-dozen greatest masters of our time

In the opinion of Bob Blumenthal of The Boston Globe “In the century since his birth, there has been no greater composer, American or otherwise, than Edward Kennedy Ellington.”
A major figure in the history of jazz, Ellington’s music stretched into various other genres, including blues, gospel, film scores, popular, and classical.
His career spanned more than 50 years and included leading his orchestra, composing an inexhaustible songbook, scoring for movies, composing stage musicals, and world tours. Several of his instrumental works were adapted into songs that became standards.
Due to his inventive use of the orchestra, or big band, and thanks to his eloquence and extraordinary charisma, he is generally considered to have elevated the perception of jazz to an art form on a par with other traditional genres of music.
His reputation increased after his death and the Pulitzer Prize Board bestowed on him a special posthumous honor in 1999.
Ellington called his music “American Music” rather than jazz, and liked to describe those who impressed him as “beyond category.”
These included many of the musicians who were members of his orchestra, some of whom are considered among the best in jazz in their own right, but it was Ellington who melded them into one of the most well-known jazz orchestral units in the history of jazz.
He often composed specifically for the style and skills of these individuals, such as “Jeep’s Blues” for Johnny Hodges, “Concerto forCootie” forCootie Williams, which later became “Do Nothing Till You Hear from Me” with Bob Russell’s lyrics, and “TheMooche” for Tricky SamNanton andBubber Miley.He also recorded songs written by his bandsmen, such as Juan Tizol’s “Caravan” and “Perdido” which brought the “Spanish Tinge” to big-band jazz. Several members of the orchestra remained there for several decades.
After 1941, he frequently collaborated with composer-arranger-pianist Billy Strayhorn, whom he called his “writing and arranging companion.”

Ellington recorded for many American record companies, and appeared in several films.
Ellington led his band from 1923 until his death in 1974. His son Mercer Ellington, who had already been handling all administrative aspects of his father’s business for several decades, led the band until his own death in 1996.

At that point, the original band dissolved. Paul Ellington, Mercer’s youngest son and executor of the Duke Ellington estate, kept the Duke Ellington Orchestra going from Mercer’s death onwards.

 

Happy Birthday: Tammy Terrell(April 29, 1945 – March 16, 1970)

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Tammi Terrell (April 29, 1945 – March 16, 1970)

Tammi Terrell (born Thomasina Winifred Montgomery; (April 29, 1945 – March 16, 1970) was an American recording artist, best known as a star singer for Motown Records during the 1960s, most notably for a series of duets with singer Marvin Gaye.

Terrell’s career began as a teenager, first recording for Scepter/Wand Records, before spending nearly two years as a member of James Brown’s Revue, recording for Brown’s Try Me label. After a period attending college, Terrell recorded briefly for Checker Records, before signing with Motown in 1965.

With Gaye, Terrell scored seven Top 40 singles on the Billboard Hot 100, including “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough”, “Ain’t Nothing Like the Real Thing” and “You’re All I Need to Get By”. Terrell’s career was interrupted when she collapsed into Gaye’s arms as the two performed at a concert at Hampden-Sydney College on October 14, 1967, with Terrell later being diagnosed with a brain tumor. She had eight unsuccessful operations before succumbing to the illness on March 16, 1970 at the age of 24.

Childhood
Terrell was born as Thomasina Montgomery in Philadelphia to Jennie (née Graham) and Thomas Montgomery. Jennie was an actress and Thomas was a barbershop owner and local politician. Tammi was the eldest of two. According to the Unsung documentary, her younger sister Ludie Marianna said that they had thought Terrell would be a boy and therefore she would be named after her father. However, when she was born, the parents settled on the name Thomasina, nicknaming her “Tommie”. She later changed it to “Tammy” after seeing the film, Tammy and the Bachelor, and hearing its theme song, “Tammy”, at the age of 12. Starting around this time, Terrell started to have migraine headaches. While it was not thought to be of significance at the time, family members would later state that these headaches might have been related to her later diagnosis of brain cancer. According to her sister, Terrell’s mother suffered from mental illness.

Career
Early recordings
Before turning 15, Terrell signed under the Wand subsidiary of Scepter Records after being discovered by Luther Dixon, recording the ballad, “If You See Bill”, under the name Tammy Montgomery and doing demos for The Shirelles. After another single, Terrell left the label and, after being introduced to James Brown, signed a contract with him and began singing backup for his Revue concert tours. In 1963, she recorded the song “I Cried”. Released on Brown’s Try Me Records, it became her first charting single, reaching #99 on the Billboard Hot 100.

After this tenure ended, Terrell signed with Checker Records and released the Bert Berns produced duet, “If I Would Marry You” with Jimmy Radcliffe, in which Terrell co-composed herself. Following this relative failure, Terrell announced a semi-retirement from the music business and enrolled in the University of Pennsylvania where she majored in pre-med, staying at the school for two years. In the middle of this, Terrell was asked by Jerry Butler to sing with him in a series of shows in nightclubs. After an arrangement was made by Butler to assure Terrell that she could continue her schooling, she began touring with Butler.

In April 1965, during a performance at the Twenty Grand Club in Detroit, she was spotted by Motown CEO Berry Gordy, who promised to sign her to Motown. Terrell agreed and signed with the label on April 29, her 20th birthday. Before releasing her first single with Motown’s Tamla subsidiary, “I Can’t Believe You Love Me”, Gordy suggested a name change. Figuring “Tammy Montgomery” was too long of a name to put on a single, Gordy changed it to “Tammi Terrell”. He felt this name screamed “sex appeal”. “I Can’t Believe You Love Me” became Terrell’s first R&B top forty single, followed almost immediately by “Come On and See Me”. In 1966, Terrell recorded two future classics, Stevie Wonder’s “All I Do (Is Think About You)” and The Isley Brothers’ “This Old Heart of Mine (Is Weak for You)”. Terrell joined the Motortown Revue after the release of her first single. During a tour in which she opened for The Temptations, Terrell met the band’s lead singer David Ruffin and embarked on a torrid romance.

Success with Marvin Gaye and cancer diagnosis
In early 1967, Motown hired Terrell to sing duets with Marvin Gaye, who had achieved duet success with Mary Wells and Kim Weston as well as having recorded duets with Oma Heard. During recording sessions, Gaye would recall later that he didn’t know how gifted Terrell was until they began singing together.

At first the duets were recorded separately. For sessions of their first recording, the Ashford & Simpson composition, “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough”, both Gaye and Terrell recorded separate versions. Motown remixed the vocals and edited out the background vocals, giving just Gaye and Terrell vocal dominance. The song became a crossover pop hit in the spring of 1967, reaching number nineteen on the Billboard Hot 100 and number three on the R&B charts, making Terrell a star. Their follow-up, “Your Precious Love”, became an even bigger hit reaching number five on the pop chart, and number-two on the R&B chart. At the end of the year, the duo scored another top ten single with “If I Could Build My Whole World Around You”, which peaked at number ten on the pop chart and number-two on the R&B chart. The song’s B-side, the Marvin Gaye composition, “If This World Were Mine”, became a modest hit on both charts, reaching number sixty-eight on the pop chart and number twenty-seven on the R&B chart. Gaye would later cite the song as “one of Tammi’s favorites”.

All four songs were included on Gaye and Terrell’s first duet album, United, released in the late summer of 1967. Throughout that year, Gaye and Terrell began performing together and Terrell became a vocal and performance inspiration for the shy and laid-back Gaye, who hated live performing. The duo even performed together on TV shows to their hits. While Terrell was finally being established as a star, the migraines and headaches that she suffered with as a child were becoming more constant. While she complained of pains, she insisted to people close to her that she was well enough to perform. However, on October 14, 1967, while performing with Gaye at Hampden-Sydney College, just outside the town of Farmville, Virginia, Terrell fell and buckled onstage; Gaye quickly responded by grabbing her by the arms and helping her offstage. Shortly after returning from Virginia, doctors diagnosed a malignant tumor on the right side of her brain.

After recovering from her first operation, Terrell returned to Hitsville studios in Detroit and recorded “You’re All I Need to Get By”. Both that song and “Ain’t Nothing Like the Real Thing”, reached number-one on the R&B charts. Despite Terrell’s optimism, her tumor got worse requiring more operations. By 1969, Terrell had retired from live performances as she had been ordered by doctors not to perform due to her tumors. Motown issued Terrell’s first and only solo album, Irresistible, in early 1969. Terrell was too ill and sick to promote the recordings.

Both Marvin Gaye and Valerie Simpson gave different stories on how the production of Terrell’s and Gaye’s third album together, Easy, went about. According to reports, Terrell had gotten so ill from her operations that she couldn’t record, and Motown opted to have Valerie Simpson sub in for Terrell, a report that was repeated in the book Marvin Gaye: What’s Going On and the Last Days of the Motown Sound. Gaye would later say the move was “another moneymaking scheme on BG’s part”. Valerie Simpson, on the other hand, stated that the ailing Terrell was brought into the studio when she was strong enough to record over Simpson’s guide vocals, insisting Terrell sung on the album. Easy produced the singles “Good Lovin’ Ain’t Easy to Come By”, “What You Gave Me”, “California Soul” and the UK top ten hit, “The Onion Song”.

Late in 1969, Terrell made her final public appearance at the Apollo Theater where Marvin Gaye was headlining the bill. As soon as Terrell was spotted by Gaye, he rushed to her side and the duo began singing “You’re All I Need to Get By” together.

Personal life
In her memoirs about her famous sister, Ludie Montgomery writes that Terrell was the victim of sexual molestation by three boys after leaving a neighborhood party at the age of eleven. The boys were arrested and convicted on a rape charge. The incident led to a change in Terrell’s behavior. During her early career, Terrell dated many men both in the music business and out. Though they never dated, Terrell had been romantically interested in singer Sam Cooke and she had a budding friendship with Gene Chandler. In 1962, at 17, she signed with James Brown and the two engaged in a sexual relationship. However, this relationship turned out to be abusive. After a horrific incident with Brown backstage after a show[clarification needed], Terrell asked Chandler, who witnessed the incident first hand, to take her to the bus station, so she could go home. He later called Terrell’s mother to pick her up. This ended Terrell’s two-year affair with Brown.

In 1965, Terrell forged a romance with then-Temptations singer David Ruffin. The following year, Ruffin surprised Terrell with a marriage proposal. However, Terrell was devastated once she learned that Ruffin had a wife and three children and another girlfriend, also living in Detroit. This led to the couple having public fights. Though it was later claimed that Ruffin had hit Terrell with a hammer and a machete, these claims were denied by Terrell’s family and her Motown label mates, though Ludie Montgomery confirmed a story that Terrell was hit on the side of her face by Ruffin’s motorcycle helmet, leading to the end of their relationship in 1967.

After signing with Motown, she forged friendships with some of the label’s artists. One of her closest was with her duet partner, Marvin Gaye, with whom she had a close platonic relationship. Though it’s often alleged their relationship grew into a brief romance, those close to the singers denied this claim. Ashford & Simpson, and Gaye in later years, stated the relationship was almost sibling-like. Nevertheless they were reported as having opposite personalities: Gaye being shy and introvert, Terrell being streetwise and extrovert. What they shared was their charisma as a performing couple and their sense of humour. Gaye would later call Terrell “sweet” and “misunderstood” and stated that Terrell was his “perfect [musical] partner”. At the time of her death, she was engaged to be married to Ernest Garrett, who was a doctor at Terrell’s hospital but not her personal doctor.

Death
By early 1970 Terrell was confined to a wheelchair, suffered from blindness and hair loss, and weighed a scant 93 lb. Following her eighth and final operation on January 25, 1970, Terrell went into a coma for the remaining month and a half of her life.

On March 16, Terrell died of complications from brain cancer. She was six weeks short of her 25th birthday. Her funeral was held at the Jane Methodist Church in Philadelphia. At the funeral, Gaye delivered a final eulogy while “You’re All I Need to Get By” was playing. According to Terrell’s fiancé, Dr. Garrett, who knew Gaye, her mother angrily barred everyone at Motown but Gaye from her funeral.

Aftermath
Already depressed from the first diagnosis of her illness back in late 1967 and from her onstage collapse, Marvin Gaye further withdrew from performing following Terrell’s death, re-emerging two years later performing during a benefit concert at the then newly-opened Kennedy Center at Washington, D.C. in May 1972. Terrell’s mother criticized Motown for not helping with Terrell’s illness accusing the label for covering up the singer’s condition releasing albums of Terrell’s work without her consent. Gaye had also contended that he felt Motown was taking advantage of Terrell’s illness and refused to promote the Easy album despite Motown telling him it would cover Terrell’s health expenses.

Gaye never fully got over Terrell’s death, according to several biographers who have stated that Terrell’s death led Gaye to depression and drug abuse. In addition, Gaye’s classic album What’s Going On, an introspective, low-key work which dealt with mature themes released in 1971, was in part a reaction to Terrell’s death. In July 1970, four months after Terrell’s untimely passing, a dramatic rearrangement of “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough”, was released by Diana Ross, becoming a number-one hit and one of Ross’ signature songs.

On October 8, 2010, Hip-O Select released Come On And See Me: The Complete Solo Collection, a collection of all of Terrell’s solo work dating back to high school, plus never before released songs and 13 minutes of the only known live stage recordings.

Discography
Studio albums
1967 The Early Show (with Chuck Jackson) A Side A is by Terrell, side B is by Jackson
United (with Marvin Gaye)
1968 You’re All I Need (with Marvin Gaye)
1969 Irresistible
Easy (with Marvin Gaye)

Compilation albums
1970 Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell’s Greatest Hits
1980 Superstar Series Volume 2 (with Marvin Gaye)
2000 20th Century Masters – The Millennium Collection: The Best of Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell
2001 The Essential Collection
The Complete Duets (with Marvin Gaye)
2010 Come On and See Me: The Complete Solo Collection
2011 Icon: Love Songs (with Marvin Gaye)

Singles
1961 “If You See Bill” Credited to Tammy Montgomery.
1962 “Voice of Experience” Credited to Tammy Montgomery.
1963 “I Cried” Credited to Tammy Montgomery.
1964 “If I Would Marry You” Credited to Tammy Montgomery.
1965 “I Can’t Believe You Love Me”
1966 “Come On and See Me”
1967 “What a Good Man He Is”
“Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” (with Marvin Gaye)
“Your Precious Love” (with Marvin Gaye)
“If I Could Build My Whole World Around You” (with Marvin Gaye)
1968 “If This World Were Mine” (with Marvin Gaye)
“Ain’t Nothing Like the Real Thing” (with Marvin Gaye)
“You’re All I Need to Get By” (with Marvin Gaye)
“Keep On Lovin’ Me Honey” (with Marvin Gaye)
“This Old Heart of Mine (Is Weak for You)”
1969 “You Ain’t Livin’ till You’re Lovin'” (with Marvin Gaye)
“Good Lovin’ Ain’t Easy to Come By” (with Marvin Gaye)
“What You Gave Me” (with Marvin Gaye)
“The Onion Song” (with Marvin Gaye)
1970 “California Soul” (with Marvin Gaye)

Jamie Foxx: The Amazing Spider-Man!

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Ill be doing a live Twitter Chat with @iTunesMovies about The Amazing Spider-Man 2, on 5/1 at 9am PT/12pm ET. Send your questions using ‪#‎AskElectro‬.

Mariah Carey: Cover Girl!

 

 

 

10314732_10152373436167766_1137330319778769836_nExcited to be on the cover of Wonderland Magazine, out this Friday in the UK and worldwide next week!

Happy 70th Birthday:Richard Klein

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Donald Sterling:BAND FOR LIFE!

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NBA commissioner Adam Silver bans Clippers owner Donald Sterling for life. Sterling fined maximum $2.5 million, Silver says he’ll urge Board of Governors to force Sterling to sell team.

Sponsors pulling support of Los Angeles Clippers. In rapid succession, the mass exodus included used car seller CarMax, State Farm Insurance, Kia Motors America, airline Virgin America, P. Diddy’s water brand, AQUAHydrate, Red Bull, Yokohama tires and Mercedes-Benz.  

Alfred Hitchcock:On This Day

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In honor of Alfred Hitchcock, who died on this date in 1980, here’s a fun still of the Master of Suspense from his classic TV series “Alfred Hitchcock Presents.” Photo from the L.A. Times files.

Happy Birthday:Carl Edward Gardner (April 29, 1928 – June 12, 2011)

 

Obit-Carl Gardner

 

Carl Edward Gardner (April 29, 1928 – June 12, 2011) was an American singer, best known as the foremost member and founder of The Coasters. Known for the 1958 song “Yakety Yak“, which spent a week as number one on the Hot 100 pop list, he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1987.

Gardner was born in Tyler, Texas, to Rebecca and Robert Gardner.As a singer, his first major career success came with The Robins, a rhythm and blues group that had a big hit in 1955, “Smokey Joe’s Café”.

After leaving that group, in 1956 Gardner formed the Coasters with the Robins’ bass singer Bobby Nunn, Leon Hughes and Billy Guy, at the behest of the songwriting/producing team of Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller, and had a two-sided hit in 1957, “Youngblood” (on which Gardner sang lead) and “Searchin'”. With new members Cornel Gunter and Will “Dub” Jones, the Coasters went on to produce several enduring classics of 1950s rock and roll music including “Yakety Yak“, “Charlie Brown“, and “Poison Ivy“.

Together with the other members of the Coasters – Cornell Gunter, Billy Guy and Will “Dub” Jones – Gardner was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1987.

Gardner’s son, Carl Jr., officially joined the Coasters in late 2005, after Gardner semi-retired, although Carl Jr. had been touring with them since at least 1998.

Carl Gardner, Sr. died on June 12, 2011, after suffering with congestive heart failure and vascular dementia (according to the Coasters website). Carl, Jr., took over as lead singer, but left the group in 2012 to form his own Coasters group. Veta Gardner, Carl’s widow, manages the group, which contains no original or recording members.

 

Happy Birthday: Otis Rush

2011 Otis Rush

Happy 44th Birthday:Uma Karuna Thurman

 

uma-thurmanHappy Birthday to actress and model Uma Karuna Thurman (born April 29, 1970).

Happy Birthday:Michelle Marie Pfeiffer

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Happy Birthday: Tamara “Taj” Johnson-George

 

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Happy Birthday to Tamara “Taj” Johnson-George (born April 29, 1971)…singer, actress, and author. Best known as one-third of the singing group SWV.

 

Happy Birthday:Willie Hugh Nelson

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Happy Birthday to Willie Hugh Nelson (born April 29, 1933)…country music singer-songwriter, as well as an author, poet, actor, and activist.

Happy 44th Birthday:Percy Robert Miller, Sr.

 

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Happy Birthday to Percy Robert Miller, Sr. (born April 29, 1970), better known by his stage name Master P or his business name P. Miller…rapper, actor, entrepreneur, investor, producer, and former professional minor league basketball player.

Master P’s son is rapper/singer/actor Romeo Miller.

Happy Birthday:Erica Atkins-Campbell

 

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Happy Birthday to singer Erica Atkins-Campbell of the Gospel sisters duo Mary Mary (born April 29, 1972).

Apricot Fizz

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Getty Images

Apricot Fizz

Ingredients (per cocktail):

1 tablespoon vodka

1/4 apricot nectar

1/2 cup champagne

Directions:

Pour the vodka and nectar into a flute. Top with champagne.

Via womansday.com

Fresh Coconut Layer Cake

Ultra Fancy Cakes, including this Fresh Coconut Layer Cake

Ultra Fancy Cakes, including this Fresh Coconut Layer Cake

Ingredients

 

  • 2 (1 1/2-pound) coconuts
  • 1/4 cup sugar

For cake layers

  • 3 1/3 cups sifted cake flour (not self-rising; sift before measuring)
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1/8 teaspoon pure almond extract
  • 2 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 3/4 cups sugar, divided
  • 7 large egg whites, at room temperature 30 minutes

For frosting

  • 3 large egg whites, at room temperature 30 minutes
  • 2 1/4 cups sugar
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons light corn syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • Equipment: 3 (9- by 2-inch) round cake pans

Preparation

Prepare coconut:
Preheat oven to 350°F with racks in upper and lower thirds.

Pierce softest eye of each coconut with a small screwdriver and collect liquid in 2 separate bowls to sample. If either tastes rancid, discard that coconut and liquid and Start over with another. Strain liquid from 2 coconuts through a dampened-paper-towel-lined sieve into a 1-cup measure and set coconuts aside. (You should have about 3/4 cup liquid. If not, add water.) Bring to a simmer with sugar and a pinch of salt in a small saucepan, stirring until sugar has dissolved. Cool and reserve.

Bake coconuts on lower rack 15 minutes. Leave oven on. Break shells with a hammer, then remove flesh with screwdriver, prying it out carefully. Peel brown membrane from flesh with a vegetable peeler. Coarsely grate enough coconut on large holes of a box grater to measure 5 cups.

Make cake layers:
Butter cake pans, then line bottom of each with a round of parchment paper and butter parchment. Flour pans, knocking out excess.

Sift together flour (3 1/3 cups), baking powder, and salt.

Stir together milk and extracts.

Beat butter and 1 1/2 cups sugar in a large bowl with an electric mixer at medium speed until pale and fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes. At low speed, add flour mixture in 3 batches alternately with milk mixture, beginning and ending with flour mixture and mixing until each addition is just incorporated.

Beat egg whites in another large bowl with cleaned beaters at medium speed until they just hold soft peaks. Beat in remaining 1/4 cup sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, then beat until whites just hold stiff, glossy peaks. Stir one third of whites into batter, then fold in remaining whites gently but thoroughly.

Spread batter evenly in pans and rap pans on counter several times to eliminate air bubbles.

Place 2 pans on upper rack and 1 pan on lower rack and bake 20 minutes. Switch position of pans and bake until golden and a wooden pick inserted in center of each cake comes out clean, 10 to 15 minutes more. Cool cakes in pans on racks 5 minutes, then run a knife around edges of pans and invert cakes onto racks. Discard parchment and cool completely, about 1 hour.

Make frosting and assemble cake:
Beat together egg whites, sugar, water, corn syrup, cream of tartar, and salt in a large deep bowl with a handheld mixer (clean beaters if necessary) until combined. Set bowl over a pot of simmering water and beat mixture at high speed until it holds stiff, glossy peaks, 5 to 7 minutes. (Humid weather may necessitate additional beating time.) Remove bowl from heat, then add vanilla and beat until frosting is cooled and very thick, 6 to 10 minutes. Transfer 2 1/3 cups frosting to another bowl and stir in 2 cups coconut to make filling.

Put 1 cake layer on a cake stand or large plate. Brush top with one third of reserved coconut syrup, then spread with half of filling. Repeat with another layer, more syrup, and remaining coconut filling, then top with third layer. Brush top with remaining syrup, then cover cake with remaining frosting and coat with remaining coconut, gently pressing to help it adhere.

Cooks’ notes: ·Coconuts can sometimes be rancid. You may want to buy an extra one.

·The egg whites in the frosting might not be fully cooked, which may be of concern if salmonella is a problem in your area.

·Cake layers can be made 3 days ahead and chilled, wrapped separately in plastic wrap.

·Cake can be assembled 4 hours ahead.

This website content was created with the help of Ultimate Tinymce!

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