EXCLUSIVE: Alabama Rapper, JABO, Breaks Down the ‘Anatomy of a Street Genius’, Sidechick Issues, & Impact of Doe B’s Death
There always seem to be some concern when a college educated artist talk about street life in their songs. We’ve heard the whispers when 2 Chainz starting making real moves. Before him, Florida rapper Plies received backlash from various critics. Eventually, however, the hate faded away from both artists. They went on to build very successful music careers. So, does having an education REALLY disqualify a person’s “street cred”? It should’t.
Artist such as Birmingham, AL’s Javan Micah Ishman a.k.a. Jabo, is an example of how both worlds can intertwine with one another. His latest mixtape, Anatomy of a Street Genius, is described as a musical “collection of street and the intellectual combined together.” And what’s wrong with that if you grew up in that environment? Nothing. Jabo, like many others, didn’t allow the hardships (and the temporary luxuries) of the street life persuade him to go all-in. Although he could have easily gone that route, he decided to head to Alabama State University to further his education. But, while in college, Jabo painstakingly endured the same struggles that plague many of our neighborhoods…gun violence. He was shot twice during an attempted robbery. Then later, lost his catalog of music when a friends’ studio was robbed.
If you had to sum up Jabo’s 26 years of life, you can almost relate it to the parents and great-grandparents who survived Alabama’s civil rights movement. Growing up in one of the main focal areas of the Black struggle, Jabo embodies the spirit of perseverance and strength. And his personal testimony reads as such. After the loss of his music and being a victim to gun violence, he made the choice to continue pursuing a rap career. In an exclusive interview with STACKS Magazine, Jabo attributed his passion in life and music to his humble upbringings.
“We come from a place where, you know, people were raised by their grandparents. We had older people in the community that looked out for each other. It really ain’t like that no more. These days you got young people who’s parent that really ain’t caring what they kids do. They ripping and running. We knew Ms. Such-n-such will get you. Or Ms. Such-n-such will get you and you can’t go outside or you will get whooped the whole way down the block until you get home. You know what I mean. So its like, that’s where the soulfulness comes from. That sense of just being…feeling like we had to stick together to survive. Like when they say “it take a village..” In a way, yes it kinda do. The whole civil rights thing. That bring alot into it. That soulfulness. It’s just a real passion from where I come from.”
As an artist-on-the-rise, Jabo understands that the business of music can be as hateful as well. Sharing a little advice to other aspiring artists, the West Side Birmingham-native believes that conducting research can solve a lot of problems. Also, he insists that you have to be smart in where you spend your money and be willing to take risks.
“For somebody that’s coming out of high school, I would say at least give college a try. Go to college, give that a shot. You learn so many basic tools that you’ll need in this industry in college. Like how to deal with people in the corporate world. Most college professors will deal with you corporately. They are not your friends. They deal with you on a corporate level and that’s how the industry deal with you too. As far as the money aspect, I think you need to be smart on how you spend your money. Spend it in the right spots and you’ll be very successful. A lot of people have the money, but they just spend it in the wrong places. By the time they look around they’ve kind of blew through their budget. Nothing really happens for them. But, if you are spending that money in the right spots – and I’m not saying I know where all the right spots are – you got to get out there and shake the tree a little bit. You are going to make mistakes. You can’t be scared to take risks, can’t be scared to lose either. It is all a gamble. Once other people see that you are not afraid to lose (and you’ll gamble with your own money), they have more confidence in you. They see that this young man ain’t scared to lick the bottom of the barrel to come back up. So, I know if I put a little push behind him, he can stay up and he won’t fall.
It’s all about being smart and doing your research. A lot of people get into this without even Google’n “How to get your music on the radio”. It might be right there. But, we don’t even do the research. Researching, being smart with your money, spending it in the right places, and building relationships with people. So many people burn bridges at the early stages of their career because they think they’re “here” when they are really “here”. And when they burn the bridge, it’s like they go to try and…[move back up]. You can’t burn a bridge with people. Relationships last for a lifetime.”
Jabo’s viewpoint of “needing” college – or some form of education – to help an artist understand the business was perfect. Oftentimes we hear that school isn’t needed and that there are self-made millionaires who’ve never attended college. Although that may be true, at some point that millionaire had to read a book or ask questions to find out what next steps to take. So, Jabo should be applauded for understanding its [education's] importance.
On his latest project Anatomy of a Street Genius, listeners will hear a mixture of a lot of things. Jabo’s content mixes the negative with the positive, but maintains its local integrity with the production choices. He also features industry allies, Slim Thug and the late Doe B, on a couple joints. New York rapper Jadakiss is also featured on Jabo’s breakout hit “What I’m About”. During our discussion, he opens up about his relationships with Slim Thug and Jadakiss. He also explains the impact of Doe B’s death on the state of Alabama.
Jabo’s humble spirit and educated know-how has the potential to make him the next big thing. So many artists lose their way while reaching for success. After several unfortunate setbacks, Jabo’s still standing but is grateful for each step of his journey. If he continues to embody the spirit of his local civil rights heroes, Jabo has a great chance at becoming the star Alabama has long awaited for.
To stay updated on Jabo’s upcoming tour schedule and latest news, visit www.JaboEnt.com or follow him via Twitter/Instagram/Facebook @JaboEnt !
The Ratchet Report: Draya & Sundy’s Oscar Party Fight, LHHNY’s Rashidah Ali Back in Court, & Lamar’s Pushers Stole $250K in Jewels from Khloe??
Brawl In Beverly Hills between LA Basketball Wives Stars
Basketball Wives of LA get into a heated confrontation…. Draya Michele and Sunday Carter of the new season of Basketballs wives of LA get into a verbal confrontation at an Oscar Party. The reality stars kept the drama going even off camera at the Uptown Magazine event during Oscar weekend. Shows from this season have only appeared a few times, but I conclude that there is going to be tons of drama. Reports from several press outlets stated that the two women yelled and argued at a civilized crowded venue while co-star Malaysia Pargo stood close. Apparently the women had been arguing about issues they are having on the show as well as comments Sunday Carter allegedly had been making about Draya during press interviews.
Well, if anything, they have definitely boosted ratings by acting like two High School children with nothing else better to do but hey it gives me something ratchet to write about…. Thanks Ladies!
Love and Hip Hop NY Rashidah Ali Back in Court
Reality-star Rashidah Ali facing parole violation…. Back in 2011 the infamous, unapologetic, no holds bars boss chick Rashidah Ali was arrested for fraud. Ali was convicted on charges of stealing and using a credit card from a professional athlete that she had known. Court reports that Ali didn’t get any jail time, but was put on parole for the conviction. A judge violated Ali’s parole after missing several scheduled parole meetings and never paid restitution per order of the court.
I’m sure Ali has the money especially after all the guest appearances she has made on the show. On top of that, she is planning a lavish wedding on the show that she kicked her former BFF Tahiry Jose out of, I must add. Ali was spared by the judge and was not in violation this time. Hopefully, she has learned her lesson.
Lamar Odom Drug Dealers Possible Suspects of Home Robbery
Odom dealers may have stolen wife Khole Kardashian’s jewelry…. After further investigation and several testimonies about Odom’s drug debt, police think his pushers could have been the perp’s in the burglary of his home. Whoever robbed the home took a reported $250,000 worth of jewlrey from Khole Kardashian. Several sources say that Odom owed the dealers several thousands of dollars and would always blow them off when they contacted him to recoup whatever he owed. Cops say because there were no signs of forced entry, they think it was an inside job by one of their staff members that may have been working with the dealers.
Lamar Odom’s has a net worth of $50 million. I have no clue of why he would be in debt with anybody. I just hope that for his sake, his gorgeous wife Khole Kardashian, and the kids, that he seeks the help he needs.
This week “Really Award” goes to Rashidah Ali. How can you skip out on parole meetings and appear on several episodes of one of the highest rated shows in America?
Parole + Restitution – Non Reporting – Non Payment of Restitution = Not a Good Move #THINK
On Thursday, Feb. 27th, Atlanta artist Fahamu Pecou welcomed a sold out (and diverse) crowd to the first ‘InterSessions: Art x Hip Hop Dialogue‘ event held at the High Museum of Arts. The sit-down conversation about the ways in which hip-hop and art intertwines included Atlanta rapper Clifford “T.I.” Harris Jr and High Museum’s curator, Michael Rooks. The ArtxHip Hop series kick-off was created to coincide with Art Papers Magazine’s “Art x Hip Hop” issue, in which Pecou was its guest editor.
The candid conversation between the three gentlemen began with the acknowledgement of arts close relationship with hip hop. Since hip hop’s inception, from graffiti to fashion, art has had an undeniable impact on the culture. Pecou navigated the evening by asking his guests questions regarding their entry into their perspective industries, how art transcends into their world, the future of artxhiphop and society’s acceptance, and other insightful things. Both Pecou and T.I. shared a similar story on how they both made the decision to pursue art and rap as a career. T.I. explained how it was LL Cool J’s “I’m Bad” that intrigued him enough to want to learn to rap. Pecou, on the other hand, mentioned Goodie Mob’s first album Soul Food as his inspiration to want to learn more about hip hop. Their love of the music is what both pinpointed as the common factor for which they owe their appreciation.
Michael Rooks, the official curator for the museum, understands too the relation of both worlds. The audience members learned more about his position within ArtxHipHop. And that is, the next piece of the puzzle that holds the two together. Rooks job is to manage and maintain the integrity and authenticity of historical artifacts.
Throughout the evening, Pecou, T.I., and Rooks opened the minds of most of the audience members who may not have known anything about their lives and careers. Therefore, it was a pleasant surprise to see the three worlds collide, understand one another, and accept each of their individual existences.
Here are a few photos from the ArtxHipHop event:
To find out when is the next ArtxHipHop event, follow the series on Instagram @ArtxHipHop!
Rapper YG hit the ATL on Tuesday (Mar. 4) to promote his upcoming project MY KRAZY LIFE. It was apparent that there was a full day planned out for the west coast emcee.
First, YG stopped through the West End Mall area to meet-and-greet the locals. The Athlete’s Foot sports store was packed with fans eager to snap a photo and obtain an autograph. Check out a few photos from the in-store:
Recently, the RIAA announced that YG’s single “My Ni$$a” sold a million copies, certifying its platinum-selling status. The single, which featured Jeezy and Rich Homie Quan, originally appeared on a CTE compilation mixtape and soon after became a radio and club favorite. The song has a remix version as well and it features Lil Wayne, Meek Mill, and Nicki Minaj. Many people wonder, however, will YG be able to produce another platinum-selling single or a platinum album. We’ll have to wait and see. But, he did host a listening session later in the evening over at Patchwerk Studios.
YG’s listening session for MY KRAZY LIFE, brought out several artists and local industry cats. Jeezy, Don Cannon, Slick Pulla, DJ Aaries, A1 Super Group, Que, and many others showed up to support.
Fans who pre-order the album on iTunes will also receive three tracks (“Who Do You Love” feat. Drake, “Left Right” feat. DJ Mustard, and “My Ni$$a” Remix).
MY KRAZY LIFE hits stores on March 18th!
To see the full gallery, CLICK HERE!
Photo Credits: STACKS Magazine & Desmick Perkins
As previously posted on February 11, the 4th Annual Legendary Awards went underway at the fabulous Fox Theater in Atlanta, GA. This special event honored local and national individuals who has impacted their careers, industry, and the people around them. This year’s ceremony was hosted by comedian Rodney Perry and actress Kendra C. Johnson. Those honored were Joe Louis Reliford (World’s Youngest Pro Baseball Player), Jonathan Babineaux (ATL Falcons player), Sugar Shane Mosely (boxer), Cameo (music group), Elisabeth Omilami (actress/activist), Shanti Das (entrepreneur), Madeline Nelson (Sony Music VP). The Lifetime Achievement Award (and most special awardee for the night) was presented to Jim Kelly, NFL Hall of Famer and former Buffalo Bills Quarterback.
Due to this ocassion being titled the “Legendary Awards”, STACKS Magazine took to the meet-and-greet area to find out exactly what being “legendary” truly is. Our on-site media reporter, Bianca Hawkins, had the opportunity to learn first hand the definition of being “legendary” from Q. Parker (group 112), Sharlinda Parker (entrepreneur/reality star), Sabrina Rowe (entrepreneur), B Angie B (singer), Sonia Booker (wealth expert), Reigndrop Lopes (artist), Case (artist), and Karyn Greer (11 Alive News anchor and recipient of the Media Icon Award).
PHOTOS: Tameka “Tiny” Harris & Mother, Dianne Pope Hosts ’10,000 Coins 4 A Change’ Alzheimer’s Charity Event
On Saturday (March 1), a special event took place at Nancy’s Pizza-Buckhead in support of those who lives are affected by Alzheimer’s. The For The Love of Our Fathers foundation hosted the 10,000 Coins 4 A Change charity event, which VH1′s “T.I. & Tiny: The Family Hustle” star Tameka “Tiny” Harris was in attendance. Tiny, along with her mother Dianne Pope, Shekinah Anderson, and King Harris were on-site to greet the crowd and show their gratitude for their support of Alzheimer’s research and caregiver’s assistance.
Many of those affected with Alzheimer’s are not only stricken with the disease, but also placed in unfortunate situations when there’s no one available to care for them. FTLOOF continues to spearhead efforts to financially support these caregivers. This is a cause Mrs. Pope is all too familiar with. Her husband fell ill to the disease and later passed away. This charity event, along with past events, are Mrs. Pope and Tiny’s opportunity to continue the charge of seeing that caregivers are supported and provided the facilities and/or supplies needed to care for their Alzheimer’s patients.
If you would like more information on FTLOOF and/or donate to the foundation, please visit www.fortheloveofourfathers.org.
Check out a few photos from the event:
To see the full gallery, CLICK HERE!
The music scene, especially in Atlanta, is never a dull moment. With the city claiming home-base to many of the industry’s top songwriters and producers, you are always running into a hungry young artist ready to make his or her mark in music.
One of those new artists is Devin Michael.
Last Thursday (Feb. 27), he hosted an album release/listening party at Nancy’s Pizza-Buckhead. The event was well-attended with his industry peers and local socialites. STACKS Magazine was on the scene as well to show support, although we had the pleasure of meeting Devin a while ago. During our initial conversation, Devin Michael seemed very genuine. You don’t meet many aspiring (or veteran) artists who are naturally sincere. So, it was refreshing to speak with Devin as we got a chance to get to know more about him. At that time, he spoke of the new project, which he premiered on Thursday night called L.O.V.E..
The acronym L.O.V. E. is defined as “Letting Out Various Emotions”. Devin said that, “each song is going to touch on a different emotion that you feel while you’re in love. Be it “jealousy”…sometimes you be in love and you get jealous. Or “happiness” because love is happy. But you know, just different emotions is going to be on it [the album].” The free album encompasses the emotions indeed, which may attest to his fondness of R&B singer Brandy. As his all-time favorite artist, Devin is highly inspired by Brandy’s vocal sincerity and technique.
The Portland, Oregon native has big plans for his future, which is also a surprise. Some indie artist have a difficult time planning for the next day, let alone 5 to 10 years down the road. When we spoke, Devin assured us he has goals and a 5 year plan mapped out.
In 5 years, I want to be on album number 2 or 3. Album 1 will be a couple songs platinum. I’m on the road and writing a song for Beyonce’s new album. Working on my first movie. And I have 3 songs on the Top 10 on the charts (one of mine, one is a duet, and the other is one of me singing and rapping).
And I want to have writing credits on every song.
I feel like a lot of male artists just want women; you got to be beyond that. It’s only going to last for so long if you are just thinking about that aspect. I got goals. So, I want to get to those goals. And the women will come.
Devin Michael has his career well-planned. With the assistance of a great team, we are sure all of his musical dreams will come alive.
Here are few photos from his L.O.V.E. release party:
To see the full gallery, CLICK HERE! Follow Devin Michael at @IAmDevin on Twitter.
Special thanks to Devin Michael & Jakeem Smith for the invite!
PHOTOS: @BobbiV @Dondria, @IamLaTavia @MarlonWayans Support Hair Product Line @ Bronner Bros. Hair Show
via press release…
Various celebrities and hair brands descended upon Atlanta this weekend to participate in the annual Mid-Winter Bronner Bros. Hair Show. Actor/comedian Marlon Wayans, R&B singer Bobby Valentino, So So Def’s Dondria and singer/”R&B Divas Atlanta” star Latavia Roberson all stopped by the Strength of Nature booth to get a glimpse of their newest product, the Beautiful Textures Reversible™ Straightening Texture Manageability™ System.
For information on the Reversible™ Straightening Texture Manageability™ System, visit www.beautifultextures.com.
Photo Credit: James Hogan, Joi Pearson
Special thanks to Saptosa Foster, of the 135th Street Agency!
The Ratchet Report: Papa Knowles Owe $32K in Child Support, Bieber’s Security Guard Arrested, & Parking Goes Bad at Texas A&M
Matthew Knowles Baby Mother Breaks Her Silence….
Papa Knowles called out on National TV…. Alexsandra Wright the mother of Matthew Knowles youngest child speaks out about his neglect to their child. Wright stated that she had no reason to go public about her and Matthew’s business until he decided not to be a father to their 4 year-old son. Wright stated that before she actually got pregnant she and Matthew had a secret love affair during the time he was still married to ex-wife Tina Knowels. Wright is now 44 years old and states that she is barely making it and depends on food stamps to support their son Nixon. She went even further to say that she was asked to let Beyonce & Jay Z raise Nixon as their own before Blu Ivy was born, however, she declined the offer. Wright stated that she didn’t have anything negative to say about the family nor has the family been negative towards her. She only wants her $32k in back child support from Matthew and a chance for Nixon to know his sister Beyonce.
Another Scandal in Bieber Land….
Police seize Justin Bieber’s Escalade…. Atlanta Police Department officials seized the Escalade of pop star Justin Bieber and find marijuana. Bieber and members of his camp have been in the news for the past several months and he has been getting tons of good and bad press. Bieber recently moved to Atlanta after his run-ins with the law all across the world. This time Bieber’s bodyguard was arrested for stealing a photo camera at a fun house Bieber rented for the day according to TMZ. The Atlanta police report stated that the after the Escalade has been seized and towed to police headquarters cops found marijuana and 2 large glass smoking pipes. Although the pipes has marijuana residue there was not enough to charge anyone for a crime. Biebers driver stated that he had no clue about the pipes and it was common to never ask questions.
When Parking Goes Bad for Texas A&M football players….
Police detain 3 Texas A&M football players…. I’m not sure what our colleges and schools are teaching the youth these days, but I think they should add “common sense” as a pre-requisite before each grade. Texas A&M blue chip recruits Isaiah Golden, Darian Claiborne and Devante Noil pulled into a Handicap parking spot at midnight on Tuesday in the College Station Apartments. According to police reports from the officer, he initially detained the 3 boys after he approached the car because he smelled marijuana. The officer asked Golden, Claiborne and Noil to exit the car, and as he searched it, he found an open container. Reports also stated that Claiborne began to shout in frustration about his football career being ruined. Claiborne was also charged with a “noise violation” for continuing to scream and disrupting the search. Golden was later arrested for possession and Noil the top wide receiver recruit in the country was let go.
This week “Really Award” goes to the 3 Texas A&M football players “Golden, Claiborne and Noil”. I want to break this down because for all students or adults everywhere:
Lesson 1: Don’t park in a Handicap parking spot without a Handicap sticker with marijuana and an open container.
I, Abner, had the pleasure of interviewing my fellow University of Central Florida (UCF) alumni Tony Khuu, one of the owners of VAIN Nightclub in Orlando, FL. In 2013, Nightclub.com ranked Vain as one of the Top 100 nightclubs in the US, the first time any club in Orlando has made the list.
Tony started Powerhouse Events Marketing & Promotions (Powerhouse E.M.P.) with Johnathan “Kocky” Hamilton in 2005 to help put their own stamp in the nightlife industry. With the success of Powerhouse, Tony and Johnathan also started Khuu Hamilton Enterprises Entertainment & Promotions (K.H.E.E.P.). K.H.E.E.P. has grown into a brand that specializes in throwing distinct events with a purpose and vision. If you visit or live in Orlando, be sure to check out Orlando’s largest club. VAIN is the nightlife experience you been waiting for.
How long have you been in the business and were you a Business major at University of Central Florida?
Tony: I have been in the promotions and marketing business since 2002. On the ownership side, I am in my third year. I went to UCF for Business Administration with an emphasis in Marketing.
How did it feel to see Vain Night Club make the 2013 Top 100 Clubs in the United States?
Tony: It felt great, especially being that we are the first club North of South Florida to make the list. It’s a blessing to see the growth of Vain Nightclub over the years from the first day it opened.
What do you feel separates your club from others?
Tony: Orlando is a melting pop, and VAIN NIGHT CLUB is ORLANDO! Every night is a different experience that appeals to all walks of life. VAIN alone is a melting pot. It’s diverse and caters to everyone of all nationalities. Tuesday is Latin, Wednesday is Urban Hip Hop, Thursday is College Mainstream Hip Hop, Friday is EDM and House Music, and Saturday is Open Format Top 40.
What are the pros and cons of being a owner?
Tony: Being in the industry there is a lot of good and bad. Being an owner you are put under a microscope from everyone. For example, when you become successful or get into a new situation in life people will assume that you have changed and want to categorize you as “Hollywood”. Why would anyone want to do the same things that they did in college? Why would you as a professional want to run in circles and do the same things over and over again, that is INSANE! It is natural that with success you may do things differently, and move a certain way, which is not necessarily bad thing, because you are GROWING as a person.
What the public fails to realize is that, the way the people around view you in your new position and that perception has changed! My partners and I have pretty much the same circle of friends since college. Instead of drinking every night, we like to stay sober so we can wake up because we have 100+ employees that relay on the place to be packed and to be ran properly. It’s good when its good, and its bad when its bad. I love what I do. I’m passionate about it and we feel we are built for it, and just have to take it all within stride. In life you just have to find balance in all you do. Balance work and your personal life, too much of ANYTHING is NEVER good for you.
Why is it difficult for most clubs to stay open after 4 or 5 years?
Tony: It’s difficult because most club nights (and clubs in general) last about 3-5 years assuming everything stays the same. Eventually, the public will get bored and will look for something new. That is natural. There is an advantage in being in small markets because not many new venues pop up like places like Vegas and Miami; not until recently here in Orlando at least. There was a run before the last 2-3 years ,there were no new venues. As owners and promoters get older, their lives evolve so sometimes they may not be in touch with what the trends are and what is hip.
What’s the most important aspect of the nightclub experience?
Tony: The customers…making sure they are having a good time and are pleased. When that is accomplished, you will get repeat business. There is a reason it is called hospitality.
How can readers keep up with you and Vain Night Club through websites (Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, etc.) ?
The city of Atlanta was in full go-mode this weekend with the Bronners Brother’s Hair Show and various other events. Many celebrities embarked on the city to capitalize on the crowd by promoting their new projects. One of those individuals was actor/comedian/film writer and producer, Marlon Wayans. Besides attending the hair show for autograph signings and meet-n-greet, the comedic genius hit the city to promote his upcoming film A Haunted House 2.
On Monday night (Feb. 24), Wayans hosted a exclusive press reception for over 80 journalists. The journalists and bloggers got the opportunity to ask questions about everything from his family’s legacy to the Oscars.
Here are a few pictures from the reception:
For information on A Haunted House 2, visit www.facebook.com/AHauntedHouse.
Hash Tag #AHauntedHouse2
Follow him on Twitter @MarlonWayans .
Photo Credits: James Hogan, Joi Pearson
Special thanks to Saptosa Foster, of the 135th Street Agency.
On Thursday night (Feb. 20), Def Jam, Maybach Music Group, and Tree Sound Studios (in Atlanta) hosted a private listening session for Mastermind. As expected, Rick Ross was in the building to present the album, which is less than 11 days away from its official release date (March 4). The place was packed with industry veterans, DJs, media, and tastemakers all under one roof to listen to Mastermind in its entirety before it goes public.
Celebrities and socialites including Trae the Truth, Lil Wayne, Tracy T, T-Pain, Terri Vaughn, Traci Braxton and her hubby Gabe, Big Tigger, DJ Drama, R.L. from Next, Mr. Ruggs, Blue Davinci and many others were also there in support of Ross’s new project.
Mali Hunter, a very well-respected industry vet and official hostess for the evening, and her Tree Sounds family laid out the red carpet for all of the guests. A delicious southern meal was prepared for everyone, which included fried chicken, green beans, collards, mac-n-cheese, pulled pork/chicken, and much more. Bellaire Rose, Ciroc, and Hennessey flowed through out the evening as well. As always, everyone felt comforted and excited about the new music that was coming.
As for Mastermind, let’s just say…Rick Ross may surprise a few with this new album. The level of continuity, concept, production and lyricism has remained the same, yet it has upgraded possibly due to his maturity in the game and as a man. The album, as a whole, is one that will be well-liked by hip hop heads. It is well-thought out. Tracks aren’t obviously thrown together, as many rap albums we’ve heard in the last 10 years. Mastermind stays true to Ross’s ability to bring imagination and truth together and make us all concisely visualize (and sonically hear) every aspect of his album.
To start, we all were greeted by Rick Ross and given a brief acknowledgement of gratitude for being in attendance to listen to his project. He gave the city of Atlanta and its industry experts major props, which was only right given the fact that he recently purchased Evander Holyfield’s sprawling estate and is now a local resident.
Within seconds, a video montage of photos (vintage to more recent) began to transition alongside each track off the album. The photos chosen were spot-on in that they helped all of us put each song into perspective. There are 12-tracks on Mastermind, including two bonus tracks. The entire album is one for your CD player or iPod. It is definitely “riding” music that you can play non-stop without getting frustrated by wack tracks or corny interludes.
But, based on the tracklist and my listening ear, below are my thoughts on a few stand-outs:
Track 1: Intro
Track 2: Rich Is Gangasta
Track 3: Drug Dealers Dream – takes you back to the 1980s/90′s drug wars; lyrically making us aware of the luxuries (and pitfalls) of being in the game.
Track 4: Shots Fired
Track 5: Nobody – the song pays homage to the late Notorious B.I.G., which many says Ross personifies in his swag and effortlessly rap style. The production goes as far as to sample B.I.G’s original recording and words “You’re nobody until somebody kills you”. This was definitely one that many fans will gravitate to.
Track 6: The Devil Is A Lie feat. Jay Z
Track 7: Mafia Music III feat. Sizzla & Mavado – Ross’s Miami roots, I’m sure, paid a part in his decision to record this joint. Sizzla and Mavado both do their part for that Jamican/Caribbean authenticity. I loved it. But, many people aren’t fans of reggae music. So, this may only be on the tracklist for diversity purposes.
Track 8: War Ready feat. Jeezy – We all know Jeezy murked this track. #Facts
Track 9: What A Shame
Track 10: Supreme
Track 11: Blk & Wht – This will be one of those joints that the D-Boys will gravitate to, for sure.
Track 12: Dope Bitch Skit – My initial thought about the skit was that it would have been funnier – or more impactful – if it wasn’t so long. It took up too much time for no reason at all.
Track 13: In Vein feat. The Weeknd – Decent song for the ladies.
Track 14: Sanctified feat. Kanye West & Big Sean- Kanye West went IN on this track! The production is absolutely crazy. Big Sean added a little extra flavor to it as well.
Track 15: Walkin On Air feat. Meek Mill
Track 16: Thug Cry feat. Lil Wayne
Bonus Tracks: The room did not get to hear the bonus tracks. Bummer… :-(
Track 17: Blessing In Disguise feat. Scarface & Z-Ro
Track 18: Paradise Lost
Track 19: You Know I Got It (Reprise)
My concern with the album is its ability to produce radio singles. I didn’t hear any except “Devil Is A Lie”, which has hit radio already. The only other joint that has any “single” potential is the Kanye West joint, “Sanctified”. But that’s only because of Kanye’s crossover status and Big Sean’s commercial-friendly voice. However, who knows. We’ve seen wilder things happen in music.
The other issue with Mastermind is Ross’s lyrical content. Of course, it’s a great business move to shout out your Wing Stop favorites (lemon-pepper wings) and alcohol brand. But, we heard it way too many times in the same context. Maybe if Ross figured out another catchy way to plug his brands, then it won’t seem over-done.
Lastly, he’s built this persona around himself as a BOSS – acknowledging the drug game, the “rich ni**a lifestyle, etc. However, it’s his sixth album and the perfect time to start talking about other things – more meaningful topics. Ross is a veteran at this point. It’s time to mature up – not only through his ability to produce a solid album – but mature through discussion topics as well. Although, he does deserve credit for telling the kids to “get an education” at the end of track 11, “Blk & Wht”. I appreciate Ross for that.
Mastermind drops March 4.
The Ratchet Report: Old VHS Tape Sends Woman to Jail, Senior Citizen Attacked w/ Meat, & ‘RHOBH’ Star Overpaid in Child Support
“The Ratchet Report”
Each week Stacks Mag will bring our readers “The Ratchet Report”…. We will highlight hot topics that have made headline news that make us say “Really”….. We will choose one report to receive the “Really Award” for the most down right ratchet thing we have ever heard of…. So sit back and enjoy as we bring to you “The Ratchet Report”!
Definition of Ratchet in the Urban Dictionary: A hot mess
SC Woman Placed in Jailed for not returning VHS from 2005
Kayla Finley of SC catches a misdemeanor charge and spends a night in jail…. Kayla Finley, 27 years-old of South Carolina, was arrested on Tuesday February 28, 2014 for failing to return a VHS from 2005. Pickens County police department arrested Finley after an active warrant was discovered for failing to return the movie “Monster-In-Law.” The movie featured Jennifer Lopez and Jane Fonda in the popular hilarious film about a feuding soon to be in-laws.
Finley was already at the Pickens County Jail when the active warrant was discovered filed by the store owner several years ago. Court documents show several certified letters asking Finley to return the movie however she never responded to the request. Finely spent the night in jail and was released on a $2000 bond the very next day. Finley reached out to media outlets such as FOX news and stated that she couldn’t return the VHS because she had to move of state and simply forgot.
Super Market Employee attacked by Customer
Frances Slyman arrested for hitting employee with a piece of meat…. Can you imagine coming to work and all of a sudden you are confronted by a customer and assaulted with a perfectly good piece of beef. This story drew national attention after police were responded to a call a Giant Eagle grocery store that 44 year-old Frances Slyman smacked 64 year-old, Alzbeta Barath, with a steak. Slyman was in the super market looking to purchase a pair of “special cut filets” for her and her husband for dinner that evening. Slyman stated that after Barath cut the meat and passed it to her she made a derogatory comment about her husband’s weight. Slyman stated that that Barath comment outraged her so she decided to react and tossed the steaks back at her. Barath decided not to take medical treatments and Slyman was released from jail the same day.
Real Housewife of Beverly Hills Brandi Glanville Possibly Overpaid $100k….
Eddie Cibrian wants his money back from Ex-Wife Brandi Glanville…. Being rich and famous can be fun at times but when you go through nasty legal battles things could get ugly especially during a divorce. The legendary Christopher Wallace aka Biggie Smalls said it best, “Mo Money Mo Problems.”
Actor Eddie Cibrian is accusing ex-wife Brandi Glanville, former model and star of the “Real Housewife of Beverly Hills”, of over payment for spousal support. Cibrian allegedly overpaid Glanville $100k in spousal support and has hired attorneys to retrieve his money. Cibrian legal team contacted Brandi’s attorney Ron Rale with a letter of claims for overpayment and requested immediate action.
TMZ reported that Brandi tweeted,”…Mr.fancy new cars & house man is asking ME for child support.”
This week “Really Award” goes to Frances Slyman for wasting a totally good piece of meat….
#1. You clocked a senior Citizen
#2. There are millions of starving kids in the world
Singer of “Charlene”,” I’m a Mess”, “Woo” and dozens of other amazing and soulful songs, Anthony Hamilton has been in the game since 2003 writing and singing songs. On Valentine’s eve (Feb. 13), South Bend, Indiana and its surrounding cities welcomed Anthony Hamilton along with special guest, Avery Sunshine as they rocked the stage at The Morris Performing Arts Center.
Both artists captured the embracing audience’s attention from beginning to end with their melodic vocals. They even assisted a man present at the concert, there to propose to his girlfriend. The city enjoyed their presence and is looking forward to seeing Keith Sweat and R. Kelly both perform on that same stage in the future.
Check out our footage of Anthony Hamilton performing “Pray for Me”:
By: LaQuesha Williams, contributing writer intern for STACKS Magazine
@TheKelseyNykole, of VH1′s ‘Couples Therapy’, Shares Her Plans as an Urban/Pop Artist & Being a Positive Role Model [EXCLUSIVE]
Rising starlet Kelsey Nicole Byers, better known to many as Kelsey Nykole, is setting her footprints in the entertainment industry. Kelsey Nykole is currently a cast member of VH1’s “Couples Therapy” Season 4, alongside rapper Ghostface Killah from the Wu Tang Clan.
Kelsey got her start in the entertainment business as a model. Kelsey is currently pursuing her music career and plans on taking her career to new heights. Kelsey has been nominated for music awards at the ‘Atlanta Underground Music Awards’ in 2012, as NYKKY B, and nominated for the 2012 ‘Indy Urban Music Awards’ winning ”Mixtape of the Year” & “Best Female R&B Artist” under the name Kelsey Nykole. She was a chosen artist to open for the ”Paradise Tour” at the Indianapolis Tour Stop and also called to Louisville, KY to open up for rapper Trina. The Indiana native known as “The Midwest Princess” discussed her accomplishments, her future plans, artists, and what she does in her free time during a recent interview.
How did you come up with the name Midwest Princess?
I didn’t come up with the name because of my swag. It was because of my passion and my drive behind my music. I actually got proclaimed that by a few producers I was in a session with. I was really getting around the Midwest and I was running it, building a name and they said you were the Midwest Princess and it kind of stuck from there.
How has your life changed since you appeared on VH1’s Couple Therapy?
My life has changed definitely in a great way. It is changed in a sense that when I walk the streets and when I go places, I get asked by fans running up for photos and things of that nature. It has brought a new platform for me to express my musical passion. I been building a lot more of a fan base when it comes to the music and I get a lot more support when it comes to my music. Which is amazing and beautiful, because you know you work so hard for so long. It comes a time when things start to pay off and that’s how it feels at this point. It’s all good. My life has changed socially because I interact with my fans a lot more on social networks than I used to. I interact with them definitely when I’m out and about. They notice me ’cause of my hair. It is my style and I can’t hide it. I can’t go incognito cause the hair it right there and it’s very noticeable. It’s all good. My life has definitely changed for the better and I’m excited.
Tell us about your singing career as pop/r&b singer, songwriter and are you currently working on anything in the studio?
My career as an artist, as a pop artist is my life, it’s my everything. I have been pursuing this dream professionally for almost five years. It’s been going wonderful. I jumped out there. It’s been my passion since I was a little girl. I knew this is what I wanted to do. Life hits and, in the teenage years, everything kind of blossoms out. I had a tragic incident that happened in my family that really woke me up and made me realize life is short. I have people depending on me and I want to set a great example out here for the person that the tragedy happened to. I really started to go very hard (that can’t stop won’t stop attitude towards pursuing my dreams) and something in my spirit really helps me with it. This is my purpose and what I’m supposed to be doing. It’s been amazing and over the years it’s been great growth, prosperity and blessings. Keeping my name good and respectable, definitely networking and showing my face in the right places and to the right people. Getting results, working hard, growing, developing as a artist and up to the point where it’s go time now. It’s time to take it to another level. As soon as I was done in the studio working on a lot of great music, I flew to Atlanta then to L.A., in the studio building a catalogue, writing and recording great music for my own project; be able to shop it to different artist out here. I’m definitely working on music and got a lot of great things lined up (a few music videos). Everything is all coming in due time. I’m very excited for everybody to hear it. Right now, there is a leak of a song, kind of a viral song – a song I did with super-producer/Grammy-award winning producer, Looney Tunez, called “Can’t Feel My Legs”. My actual single will be released in the spring and we are super-duper geeked about the world hearing the new sound and the music. So yeah, I’m working.
When you’re not in the studio, on TV or modeling, what do you do in your free time?
In my free time, I am working out, rehearsing, talking to family definitely, cuddling and loving on my child. It’s never a dull moment with me. I don’t like sitting around doing a lot of nothing. Sometimes, I will pray. I’m always using my energy and time wisely to ensure continuous prosperity in my career.
Any artists’ music you listen to often on your iPod? And, if you could collaborate with any, who would you choose and why?
I am a hardcore Beyonce fan, definitely blasting her music. I listen to Ghostface music. I listen to Amy Winehouse. I listen to Jazmine Sullivan. If I could collab with anyone right now, it would be super-duper dope to collab with August Alsina. I think we could definitely make great melodic-hypnotizing-sexy music together.
Would you ever do a collaboration with Ghostface?
Yes, absolutely. That’s definitely in the making, so keep it locked. Stay tuned.
What is your biggest accomplishment in this field of work?
I think my biggest accomplishment in my field of work thus far, is being a role model, being inspiring to younger girls. When I get tweets and get comments from younger girls when they want to be beautiful like me or they love my spirit – you know you such a good role model, such a good person. Just that love from these girls. Knowing I’m that somebody they can look up to, to set a new standard, that’s what I think is great for me over everything. I love entertaining crowds. I love the love I’m receiving and the support; getting that kind of response from the youth and from the next generation; being a new person to catch their eye and for them to pay attention to. Knowing that I have to set a great example, gives me life. I love it. That’s definitely what I plan to do. I have a vision board and one of the quotes I cut out says, “Pop stars stop saying you don’t want to be a role model because you’re”. We have a platform, there are people and kids looking at us all the time. They need something positive to look up to. I definitely want to be that. Not saying there aren’t any positive role models out there, there just aren’t enough. I definitely want to be that. That’s huge for me.
What else can we expect from you in the future?
You can expect everything from Kelsey Nykole. You can expect greatness, uncommon success from Kelsey Nykole, movies…the sky is not the limit. I’m reaching for the stars and beyond. You can expect great fashion from Kelsey Nykole, trend setting from Kelsey Nykole. You can expect great things from Kelsey Nykole, please believe that. So keep it locked and stay tuned.
Do you think the Indiana Pacers are going to win the championship this year?
I think they have a strong possibility of winning. They are an amazing team and I’m rooting for them 100%.
So, you think they can beat the Miami Heat this year?
Oh yeah, definitely. They beat them before and they can do it again.
How can fans keep in contact with you with social networks?
You can keep in touch with Kelsey Nykole at HeyKelsey.com, I’m on the web on Instagram and Twitter @TheKelseyNykole. On Facebook and YouTube, you can search me at Kelsey Nykole. When searching for the kid, make sure you spell the Nykole (N Y K O L E). I spell it a little different. You can hit me up on heykelsey.com and find the links for the social networks under Connect tab. Hit me up y’all. Google me. It’s music, news, and interviews. Everything is there for you at your fingertips.
The Ratchet Report: RHOA’s Mama Joyce Strikes Again, Crayton Explains Anti-Gay Tweet, & Rickey Smiley Trickin’ Off Into Debt??
RHOA Mama Joyce Strikes again and taking no Prisoners
Mama Joyce confronts Carmen again…. We have all watched and enjoyed the RHOA for several years. We have watched cast members come and go and build life long bonds, plus friendships that would not usually happen. We have the opportunities to see weddings, divorces, child births and the city of Atlanta get some good exposure. Most of all we have had the chance to see these women grow personally and professionally and “keep it real” all at the same time. The RHOA franchise has shown the world that wealthy people have the same challenges and issues everyday working class citizens have the only difference is the women in the show have just a little more cash flow.
This year the show took an unusual twist when Mama Joyce, the mother of RHOA star Kandi Burruss, expressed her thoughts about Kandi’s fiancé Todd. The last episode Mama Joyce was on sparked super ratings for the Bravo show because of the altercation she had with Kandi’s best friend and assistant Carmen. Well get ready because clips are circulating the web for the next episode and Mama Joyce is at it again. Carmen received some news about “the people in the streets” making accusations that Todd and Carmen were having a secret relationship behind Kandi’s back and confronted the person.
To Carmen’s surprise, Mama Joyce got wind of Carmen confronting the alleged person who happens to be Todd’s ex-girlfriend and left a threatening message on Carmen’s phone. Mama Joyce stated that she was not happy with Carmen confronting the alleged person and threatened to drag Carmen up and down the street.
I love Mama Joyce and think she is a fantastic woman, however, at a certain point in your life some things should be left alone – and this in my opinion is one.
Hide you kids hide your friends Mama Joyce is knocking out everybody or maybe just Carmen.
Patrick Crayton has to back track “there goes the NFL” tweets…
Patrick Crayton Twitter rants about Prospective NFL rookie Michael Sams announcement about being gay…. On Feb 9th Patrick Crayton responded to a tweet from ESPN’s Adam Schefter’s report about the projected mid-round NFL pick Michael Sam announcing being gay. Crayton replied with his beginning tweet “Oh wow!!! There goes the NFL!.” He later went to tweet, “trying to figure why announce and stay in the closet and keep, To urself!!!” Clayton later went on to try to clarify tweets after making such a dumb move and stated.
“A lot of people are mad because I said there goes the NFL,” Crayton tweeted. “I say that because now this young man is (going) to get all the wrong attention for his sexual choice and a lot of players and execs will get asked about playing with a gay guy and they are going to have to lie about how they really feel.
“This young man will come in with notoriety for announcing his sexual choice more then his ability to play the game he loves!!! This will be a major thing in football for yrs to come. So for all u guys cussing at me and calling me a bigot, a–hole or whatever, know where (expletive) I’m coming from before u do what u hate others to do when a situation like this is announced!!” (Source: www.dallasnews.com)
The world is filled with so much hate and scrutiny because a person is rich, poor, black, white, short, tall, skinny or fat, but no one is trying to embrace and love others for just being a human being. I applaud Michael Sams for having the guts to tell his truth and be happy with himself. I understand Crayton has his views and that’s also okay because this is America the land of the free and the brave and we all have our views and opinions. My suggestion however would be to embrace others and try to be more understanding.
In the words of the late Rodney King “Can’t we all just get along?”
Is Cash Flow Really Low for Comedian Ricky Smiley?
Former employee of Ricky Smiley calls former boss out…. We have all heard of the negative comments that terminated disgruntle ex-employees can make about previous employers. This time a former employee of comedian, actor and radio personality Ricky Smiley is talking to the press about his “debt” issues. The former employee stated that Ricky Smiley is up to his ears in IRS debt and back money owed to his previous manager. The former employee went on record stating that Smiley was a compulsive spender and made unnecessary purchases such as boats, cars and very expensive hotel rooms for call girls while on the road. The former employee stated that due to his spending habit and debt issues Smiley fired a lot of his staff and several others quit for various reasons. It was also stated from the former employee that Smiley’s CFO stated that Smiley would have to do live performances to supplement his monthly revenue according to www.celebnmusic247.com.
I’m not sure if this is true because of the source. But, if it is, my advice to Ricky is start booking and planning those shows because the IRS is outchea.
This week “Really Award” goes to my girl “Mama Joyce”. I know you mean well and want the best for your baby girl, but leave well enough alone and let that go. Kandi is a nice and intelligent woman and according to her net-worth, she is very smart… So no worries!
History was made on Feb 9, 2014 as Full Blossom Magazine (FBM) produced the 1st exclusively Plus Size fashion show during New York Fashion Week. This event allowed women all over the world to see a fashion show, which glorified the body of the average woman. Full Blossom Magazine showcased new trends in plus size fashion from designers: Niq Nicole, Mad Couture’s Madilyn Wade, MH302 creator Marco Hall, and Juul Couture. Not only did this event show off beautiful curvy women, but the Face The Sweet Fashion Showcase also helped to promote the awareness and education of diabetes.
Founder and Executive Director of Divabetic® Max Szadek, along with Catherine Schuller of BEHIND IT Magazine and Model Maker Mentors hosted and educated the attendees about Divabectic. The motto for this non-profit organization is you get a nutritionist so you eat good, feel good and manage your diabetes. So why, not get a stylist, make-up artist or take care of your physical appearance so you look good too. “Don’t just be a Diabetic, be a Divabetic! A Diabetic with an attitude!”
Alongside the CEO of FBM, Mello Andrews, comedian/actor Michael Blackson was also in the building to show his support for cause.
Check out a few photos from the runway show:
Special thanks to Full Blossom Magazine for the invite. Also, a huge thanks to LaQuinta Munford, for covering the event on behalf of STACKS Magazine.
via press release…
Atlanta, GA (February 10, 2014) - Divas Unlimited Inc. presented the 4th Annual Legendary Awards created to honor the accomplishments of citizens who have left an impact within their professional field of practice. The celebration took place at the Fox Theater in Atlanta, Georgia. The Annual Legendary Awards was hosted by Rodney Perry, a Host of Bounce TV’s show Off The Chain and Kendra C. Johnson, an Actress on OWN Network hit show Love Thy Neighbor’s.
This year’s honorees were:
• Jim Kelly – NFL Hall of Famer, Buffalo Bills Quarterback - Lifetime Achievement Award
• Joe Louis Reliford – World’s Youngest Pro Baseball Player – History Maker Award
• Jonathan Babineaux – Atlanta Falcons NFL Player – Community Award
• Sugar Shane Mosley – American Professional Boxer – Trailblazer Award
• Karyn Greer – 11Alive News Anchor – Media Icon Award
• Cameo – American Soul-Influenced Funk Group – Legendary Award
• Elisabeth Omilami – Award-Winning Actress - Humanitarian Award
• Legendary Awards Ambassador Teddy Riley Highlight Honorees: Shanti Das – CEO of Press Reset Entertainment and Madeline Nelson – VP of A&R, Artist and Label Relations at Sony Music
Celebrity guests, honorees, executives, elected officials and others were in attendance for the red carpet Big Rich Atlanta Sharlinda Parker, VH1 Couple’s Therapy Kelsey Nykole, Own TV For Better or Worse Actor Brad James, Co-Star of Bravo’s Kandi Factory Don Vito, Dekalb Chairman Robert Pitts, Cumulus Vice-President of Operations Colby Bruell, Vice-President of Franco Industries Steve Franco and others.
Rhonda Wilkins, Chair and CEO of the Legendary Awards Foundation, Creator and Executive Producer of the Legendary Awards and John Wilkins CEO of Divas Unlimited Inc., presented the Legendary Awards to a deserving and achieved group of honorees for its fourth year celebration. The Legendary Awards Foundation Board Member Dora Din-Durant announced its first winter initiative with Side by Side Brain Injury Center.
Performers included Two-Time Grammy Award-Winning group members Rasa Don and Headliner of Arrested Development who emerged back on the scene with a breaking performance, Germany hit singer Wolfgang Hildebrandt who did a heart wrenching tribute to Nelson Mandela and others, Case, Q Parker of 112, and Jase of Soul 4 Real followed with a tribute to Cameo, B Angie B and the Legendary Awards Choir who raised the roof.
Presenters included R&B Divas Creator Nicci Gilbert, Have and Have Nots Actor Palmer Williams, Host of HGTV’s Property Virgins Egypt Sherod, Former Atlanta Falcons Player turned Pro Boxer Ray Edwards, Editor-in-Chief of Viva Magazine Katherine Phelps, Fulton County Chairman John Eaves, WXIA Producer Evelyn Mims, Licensed Professional Card Trader Jim Pasco and 20-year veteran of V103 House Announcer Joyce Littel.
Presenting Sponsors included Divas Unlimited Inc., a full service marketing and event production company, The Creations Group doing social impact commercial investments in Downtown Atlanta including the M. Rich Center and 34 Peachtree and Anushka Healthcare, owner of multiple hospital rehabilitation centers.
Stay up-to-date with The Legendary Awards online at www.legendaryawards.com and on Twitter and Instagram (@legendaryawards).
Here are several photos from the red carpet:
To see additional red carpet photos, please click HERE!
Stay tuned for additional highlights from the 4th Annual Legendary Awards.
The Ratchet Report: Nude Church??, Bieber Plane Sniffed Out By the Feds, & Murphy Daughters VS Shoot
“The Ratchet Report”
Each week Stacks Mag will bring our readers “The Ratchet Report”…. We will highlight hot topics that have made headline news that make us say “Really”….. We will choose one report to receive the “Really Award” for the most down right ratchet thing we have ever heard of…. So sit back and enjoy as we bring to you “The Ratchet Report”
Definition of Ratchet in the Urban Dictionary: A hot mess
When the Church reference “Come As You Are” goes too far
Virginia church welcomes congregation just as they are…. For years pastors have been preaching messages of love, prosperity and hope, but for the small church in Virginia the message don’t just stop there. Whitetail Chapel, a small church just a few miles away from Virginia’s state capital, is doing more than putting their burdens down but their clothes as well. The church has literally relaxed the dress code for its members so that they don’t have to worry about what to wear, but focus on getting there. The church has an optional clothing policy that the congregation feels is not sexual, however, free from societal judgments. The pastor of the church , Pastor Allen Parker, leads the efforts and stated, “God doesn’t care if the believers wear clothes while they pray to Him. If God made us that way, then why is it wrong?” The church is located on a Nudist Resort in the Ivor Community and the members support and defend their decision to be free.
The bible does state judge not that ye may not be judged. So, if that’s how these people decide to pray, then more power to them. Just don’t expect me to show my neighbor a hug of love at the end of service.
Bieber Plane Searched by Feds in New Jersey
Bieber just can’t get enough of the police…. TMZ reported that Justin Bieber plane was searched in New Jersey after the pilot radioed Customs stating that Bieber and his friends were smoking marijuana on their flight to New Jersey. Reports from Bieber’s camp state that Bieber was aware – and was going to be searched by Customs upon arrival back to the states – because he is on a Homeland Security watch list due to 2 pending criminal cases. Although Bieber was informed by sources from his team, he decided to smoke on the aircraft anyway. The pilot stated that the he had to put on a gas mask because the smell of the marijuana was so strong and unbearable. The flight attendant on the flight stated that she was disrespected and harassed by Bieber and friends after asking them to stop smoking on the aircraft. When the plane arrived in New Jersey, federal officials were waiting with dogs to search the plane. Although Justin and his friends smoked all of the marijuana before the plane landed, drug-sniffing dogs detected trace amounts.
Bieber taking flying high to a new level. This is Biebers brain” __” …this is Biebers brain on drugs”__.”
Eddie Murphy’s Daughters Victoria Secret Photo Pitch
The Murphy girl’s home grown photo-shoot…. Do you remember when you were young and things you did when your parents were away? Well, Bria and Shayne Murphy took us all back down memory lane when their photos surfaced the media. Bria (age 24) and Shayne (age 19) decided they would make their mother Nicole Murphy and stepfather Michael Strahan’s bedroom the location for their lingerie photo shoot. The girls shot with photographer Dimitri Ray in the master bedroom of their parents Beverly hills mansion to pitch to Victoria Secrets. TMZ reported that Bria has attempted to model before, however this is a first time for her sister Shayne. But I must say, Shayne looks really HOTT.
I can say one thing Bria and Shayne better be glad Respusia Latimore isn’t their mother.
This week “Really Award” goes to no other than Justin Bieber. I mean what’s the deal with this kid. How many times does it take?
Photo Sources: TMZ, WVEC.com, & NecoleBitchie.com
Joseline, Lil Scrappy, Shay Johnson, Big Tigger & Others Attend ‘Sleazy & Zino Bistro’ Private Grand Opening [PHOTOS]
On Wednesday (Feb. 5), Stevie J and Benzino hosted a private grand opening event for their new spot, Sleazy & Zino Bistro & Bar. The “Love & Hip Hop Atlanta” stars brought out several of their cast mates, local celebrities, and industry insiders for an evening of food tastings, Ciroc, and entertainment. Of course, “entertainment” is more of an understatement considering that the LHHATL production crew were in the building catching more drama for this upcoming season’s premiere.
During the course of the evening, DJ A-One kept the party atmosphere hyped before and after the fellas hit the stage to perform. Some of you may not know, but Stevie J and Benzino have a band called The Magnificent 757′s. With help from their band mates, the 757′s rocked the crowd with a few selections. We can’t front…the band sounded pretty good. But, viewers can vouch for that when the show airs. Plus, we have video footage coming soon. So stay tuned…
The turnout was good. In the building we saw Big Tigger (V103FM radio personality), Towanda Braxton, celebrity hair stylist and TV personality, Derek J, rapper Tiffany Foxx, Johnnie Cabbell, singer Shamari Fears-Devoe, rapper Gloss Da Boss, comedian Pierre, and a host of others. Even the WeAreToonz boys, with the new dance craze “Nae Nae”, bust a few moves for the party-goers.
As the top-rated reality television show among African-Americans (per 2013′s Neilsen Sound Scan Data Report), the evening couldn’t end without a few “TV ready” incidents occurring. Out of fellow cast members, Lil Scrappy, Momma Dee, Shay Johnson, Kirk Frost, Joseline Hernandez, Karlie Redd, and of course, Benzino and Stevie J – let’s just say that season 3 will bring more scandals and altercations! From what we experienced at this event, fans of the show WILL NOT be disappointed when the new season airs in May 2014 on VH1.
Special shout out to The Garner Circle and Sleazy & Zino Bistro & Bar for an awesome event. To view the full photo gallery, click HERE!
Actor, Mykelti Williamson, Talks His Upbringing, Acting Career & Expanding His Brand with ‘Bubba Style Seasoning ‘ [EXCLUSIVE]
In 1994, the world fell head-over-heels for a supporting character whose strong southern dialect and love for shrimp warmed hearts as he established an unique bond with Forrest Gump, who was played by Tom Hanks. Forrests’ best bud was Benjamin Buford (Bubba) Blue, formally known as Michael T “Mykelti” Williamson. Even after Williamson’s breakthrough role, he continues to inspire others through acting, while keeping a small piece of “Bubba’s” spirit within.
For over 35 years, Williamson has entertained thousands of film enthusiasts with his acting abilities. He has starred in numerous films such as Wildcats (1986), Free Willy (1993), Forrest Gump (1994), Heat (1995), Waiting to Exhale (1995), The Final Destination (2009), Get Rich or Die Tryin’ (2005), ATL (2006) and many others. Television roles has included “Miami Vice”, “Hill Street Blues”, “Starsky & Hutch”, “Boomtown”, “CSI: NY”, “24″, and “Justified”.
Nowadays, 56 year old Williamson is reaching new heights. He’s currently has a lead role in the upcoming film, Convergence, and continues to perform on television in “Chicago PD” and “The Wild Blue”. Another passion has emerged into a new business venture for Williamson. Thanks to his longtime reputation of being a great cook, the actor now sells his very own line of seasonings called Bubba Style Seasonings.
No matter the industry, film or food, Williamson make sure he gives it all he’s got. This is a testament as to why he’s outlasted a lot of his peers and has many more years left in him. Check out our interview with Williamson. He talks about how he entered into the business, current projects, and his new line of spices.
How did you get your start in acting? What made you pursue a career in film?
I grew as most people of color and most of Americans, I grew up in the church. A lot of singers get their start in the church with their singing, like the Whitney Houstons and a lot of the amazing singers. It was no different for me. I used to watch television with my grandparents when I was a kid, I was the youngest at the time. I stay home from school, I wasn’t school aged yet I would watch public people on television. I thought because I could see them they could see us; my family explained to me that it wasn’t realistic and explained to me what television was. I decided I wanted to be on that thing, I started acting in church. My mom told me to pray about it. I told my mom I want an agent. Sometime went by and my parents moved to California after she told me to pray about it. That was the first piece that fell into place and I didn’t realize it. I continued to pray about it and then one day in a car wash a man walked up to me. We were talking and he said “Hi, you not in school today?” I told him I was out early and was with my mom. We started joking around, this man and I. I was laughing at his car because it was entering the car wash about to get eaten up by this machine. I was like, ”Oh My God, it was over. Your car is crushed and it’s done.” He was laughing and I was just clowning. My mom turned the corner and said, “Boy sit down” and I was like “Oh God, I’m in trouble.” The man and my mom had a conversation and it turns out his girlfriend was an agent. He told my mom, “That young man has quite a imagination, if he is interested in doing movies and television” and I jumped up and said, “Yes Sir I am.” She said, “Sit your butt down” I sat down and he said “If you call this number this is my fiancé, she is a agent and tell her I want her to represent your son.” That’s how I got my first agent. It just came from God. One thing led to another. Started working. Started training. Started studying. Started auditioning and here it is 40 years later, I’m still in the game.
Outside of your character “Bubba” in Forrest Gump, has there been any other pivotal moments that helped change your career?
I would say Heat with Al Pacino, directed by Michael Mann. To me, that was more of the important roles I have done. Forrest Gump was more of the popular project. That actually enhanced my career more than Forrest Gump did. Forrest Gump didn’t really help me. It damned near destroyed my career. People didn’t realize that was an “actor” doing their role. They thought they found a guy with a big lip somewhere on a farm and stuck him in a movie. All the money I earned in Forrest Gump I had to spend campaigning and putting myself in magazines so people can see that it was a actor. It kinda pissed me off. You know as a person of color. Only a person of color would have to jump through hoops like that. It actually pissed me off. I was able to savage my career and now people think I’m brilliant…go figure (ironic).
On FOX new show “The Wild Blue” and NBC’s “Chicago”, what are your roles? How do those characters differ in comparison?
On “Chicago PD”, I play an assistant chief of police and he is a social climber. Then, in the “Wild Blue” the character Donald Bowman is a master chief and the highest ranking enlisted man on the ship. It’s about the US Navy and he is the highest ranking enlisted man in the Navy. Between the enlisted men and the officers upstairs, he is a great a negotiator and a great manipulator. One of those guys, the police chief is not always a nice guy. Donald Bowman does the best he can to be a good guy. But, he is not to be played with. So, I think those are the differences.
So, you have a leading role in a new feature film “Convergence”. How did that come about? What was interesting about the character that made you want to audition for it?
Convergence is about a group of team of police officers and emergency workers show up to investigate an explosion. Once they get inside the building, the real big explosion is triggered, the booby trap is triggered and it goes off. All of their sprits, because they lose they lives in the building. All of their spirits are running around in limbo trying to figure out, where they belong based off how they lived their lives. For me, it was an amazing opportunity and the script was great. It was a project I had to make work as busy as my schedule is. We were able to consolidate my days, so that I can do the project and I’m very happy about it and very pleased.
When will Convergence hit theaters?
I am not sure, its in the hands of the Director/Writer, Drew Hall. He is so smart, such a good guy, and he can easily be another Stephen Spielberg. This guy got so much talent. It’s amazing. Drew Hall is cutting the film right now and it may hit the film festival circuit first, before it goes to theaters. So they are sort of testing it and brainstorming to figure out the best way to move it forward.
If you could name one role in your career, which was most memorable?
On television there is a series called “Boomtown”, created by Graham Yost who wrote “Speed”. The character name was Fearless Bobby Smith, that was my favorite television character. He was so mystical and philosophical. He was kind and he was dangerous. In film, there was a independent film called “Truth or Consequences New Mexico” and directed by Kiefer Sutherland. I played an undercover – a guy who was not who he said he was named Marcus. For me, in film that is my favorite character, even over Forrest Gump. My favorite character I ever done in film. On stage I had the privilege of playing Denzel [Washington] brother on Broadway, in a play called “Fences”. The role I did in “Fences” was my favorite role I ever done on stage.
If you could play someone in a biopic, who would it be?
Donnie Hathaway and Stepin Fetchit. Donnie Hathaway, since he was misunderstood and probably one of the most gracious, sensitive and talented man, who had to wrestle against a lot of internal struggles. And talented most gracious men to ever walk the face of the Earth. Stepin Fetchit, he was the first black movie star, but he was misunderstood and hated by his peers. He struggled to be loved by his peers. I just think that actor’s life to me is most fascinating. Even today if someone called is Stepin Fetchit, it’s meant as an insult. He was our first black movie star. It’s ironic to me people of color are taught to hate their own pioneers. He was the first person to break through a color barrier and people often times hate. Those , to me, are the two dream roles I would love to play.
How long has your Bubba Style Seasoning been around for?
That’s a passion project for me, my Bubba Style Seasoning. I have an online store called www.BubbaStyle.net. I launched the online store with my wife, brother and I about a year and half ago. People can just go online and order the spices. These spices are my own recipes that I grew up learning how to blend. My parents taught me how to blend. My mom taught me how to cook over the telephone while she was at work raising us a single parent. She would call us after school and tell us what to do. How low or how high to turn the fire and call us back and tell us what to add next. And to do our homework in the kitchen, so you can watch the pot so it won’t burn or boil over. That’s how I learned to cook, over the phone while my mom was at work. These spices are a lifelong passion and the very same spices I been making for my friends and other entertainment professionals that I have known over the years – who always asked me to put together some spices, hook up some ketchup or bar-b-que sauces for them – these are the spices. For about a year and a half it’s been available at BubbaStyle.net. We hope to get it in stores nationwide very soon, but it’s all about striking the right deal.
What inspired you to sell seasonings?
I don’t really like salty food. I like tasty food. I like all kinds of cultures from Indian, Mexican, Southern Italian, French, and Asian. I like it all. The reason I started making my own seasoning, I got tired of everybody food tasting the same. They would go to the store and buy the same seasoning and everybody food pretty similar. People would come to our house say “Man what you guys put on this.” That’s a testament to the fact that it doesn’t taste like things they can get down the street. So that’s what inspired me to start using my own seasoning, to get away from the salts and chemicals which we use very little salt. We used herbs and spices, it taste like it has as much salt as you like in it, but its herbs and spices blended a certain way. That’s what inspired me to not wanting to get the stuff off the shelf and put in my body.
Which flavors are available to buy?
Right now there is three. What we called Good Ol’ seasoning, which is a sort of a smoke brown sugar seasoning. Then we got a Spicy Ol’ seasoning, which is a mild spice but it’s a smoke brown seasoning. When I say smoke brown sugar, it doesn’t have enough sugar in it to even register on the label. The way the spices are blended it’s going to taste a little bit sweet to you. Then, I have something that we use instead of using Lawry’s, which I grew up using and I think people like that, that’s cool. We have one that doesn’t have as much salt and it’s called Fry Bubba Fry. You can use it for frying and it’s like a all-purpose seasoning. So, it’s Good Ol’ seasoning, Spicy Ol’ seasoning and Fry Bubba Fry.
What’s the key to seasoning meat perfectly?
Not overpower the meat with salt. Salt should be the absolute final ingredient added when you cooking your meat. Some people put salt early in and that’s just not the right way to do it. Use all your other herbs and spices and use salt last. I think you will enjoy and be happy with your final product.
The Ratchet Report: An Ex-Wife’s Outrageous Child Support Request, Hospital Charges $81K for Snake-Bite Meds, & Bieber’s Miami DUI
Jon Cryer’s ex-wife Request More Child Support
An LA Judge denies claims from Sarah Trigger for an increase in child support…. We all know Jon Cryer as Alan Harper from the popular CBS sitcom “Two and a Half Men”. Jon Cryer played alongside Charlie Sheen who played the role of his brother, Charlie Harper, which has since been replaced by Ashton Kutcher. It was reported by TMZ that his ex-wife requested more money from the actor in child support. Sarah Trigger pleaded her case to a judge stating that she needed the additional money to be able to keep up with the wealthy kids her son went to school and associated with. She also made claims that she needed the money because her son was subject to humiliation from other kids because of his financial status not being able to purchase lavish things. Trigger later went on to tell the judge that Cryer made enough money from “Two and a Half Men” to increase her child support from (get this) $8,000 a month to $88,000 a month. The judge denied her request and demanded that Trigger cut back her spending habits.
Case Dismissed Sarah Trigger… You won’t be able to get rich this time around.
The $89,000 Snake Bite
NC man charged over $89,000 for a hospital visit… 54 year-old Eric Ferguson from Mooresville, NC was shocked when he received a hospital bill after being treated for a snake bite. According to the Charlotte Observer, Ferguson was rushed to Lake Norman Regional Center after being bit by a snake, while taking out his trash. Ferguson was reported to be in the hospital for 18 hours and had to be treated with a four-vial dose of medication. When Ferguson received the bill, he was very alarmed after reading the breakdown of charges that included an $81,000 charge for the four-vial anti-venom medication. After coming out of shock, Ferguson and his wife searched the web for the same medication that they found for as low as $750. Lucky Ferguson had insurance and his bill was reduced to $20,227 which he was only responsible for $5,400 for his deductible and co-pay.
That must have been one hell of a bite!
Bieber’s Miami DUI Saga New Developments
Justin Bieber pleads not guilty to charges in Miami court … New reports are surfacing on the Justin Bieber DUI case in Miami. In addition to the DUI charge, the teen star is also being charged with resisting arrest and driving on a suspended license. In court, Bieber pleaded not guilty to the charges and Florida police reports also show that his blood alcohol breath test was only a .14, which is under the legal limit. Bieber did admit to drinking one beer and smoking marijuana and taking prescription pills. There were also allegations that Bieber was drag racing and his father closed off streets for him to do so. Hollywood Life reported that there was a GPS tracker in the car from the company the car was rented from and Bieber was only reported going 20 mph. Bieber is still under fire however things may be looking more in his favor.
The “Bieber” that cried wolf was telling the truth after all…
This week “Really Award” goes to Sarah Trigger for trying to convince a judge to give her an additional $80,000 per month with such a weak case. She is basically exploiting (urban dictionary: pimping) her child for more than extra cash.
Photo Credit: MassAppealNews, KRMG, USNews
#OnTheBlock: @BravoOfVA Transitions from Ex-Convict to Freestyle Champion; Releases “For The Record” Video
Meet Taijuan “Bravo” Kenney of Richmond, Virgina. The emcee recently won the 2013 DTLR and Converse Rubber Tracks 16 Bar battle in New York City. Still riding the wave from this nationally recognized competition, Bravo remains on schedule with his plans to one day become a mogul and key figure in hip hop.
His journey into rap game is an interesting one. See, Bravo’s shoes just hit the Virginia soil in 2012. He has been incarcerated since 2002. But, Bravo’s 10 year bid helped him realize that even under the worst circumstances, you can still make the most of it. Which is why, the lyricist used this time to earn a GED and perfect his craft.
STACKS Magazine wanted to talk to Bravo to understand how he’s been able to remain positive and persevere. In addition, we wanted to congratulate him on his Converse 16 Bar Freestyle win and see how he felt about the Southern rap versus New York rap controversy. Check out his interview below…
On his start in rap…
Ok,. Well, I was rapping pretty much before I got incarcerated. But, I wasn’t taking it seriously. Then, I got incarcerated and did a lot of growing up and thinking – in that time I got my education [GED], took a few college courses and at that point I was growing and maturing. I realized that my writing had become a lot more mature. It became from a “like” to a “love”. I just went at it and did a lot of research on things I needed to know in terms of the industry and to come home and put things in motion. With God graces, I found a studio to record out of and we just went strong with it.
On his inspirations…
Musically, it was guys like Jay Z and ,of course, Rakim. I grew up under adult guys like that Nas, Jay Z, and Jadakiss. I like people with substance (people who are actually talking about something instead of what’s going on with music). Those are my music influences. Then, I had other influences like historical figures like Martin Luther King, Malcolm X…guys who sent a message because I like to send a message through my music as well. It leaves something behind for someone else can pick up, a journey that they can live by, and continue to live by. That’s what I like at the end of the day. There are going to be the kids that will be listening to it. So, you want to give them something influential because we are not always going to be around the kids and they are going to pick up on things. And, it may not always be good things but I want it to be good things.
On future endeavors…
Realistically, I’m 31 now. I really don’t want to be 40 years old still on stage. No disrespect to the guys that are still doing it. I really don’t want to be. Right now, I look at one of the stepping stones is to be me venturing off to having a shoe line, a clothing line, doing real estate things of that nature. Also, becoming a mogul as someone who can bring a lot of things to this city that I’m in now which is Richmond, which really don’t have anything, especially musically. It’s so hard for those who have the title to do things. I want to be the one for those people…to be the fore front of that. That’s my long term and short term goals.
On his Converse Battle Competition win…
I think it’s a combination of both. I seen people that has had the greatest talent in the world and they just can’t perform in front of a crowd. They get nervous and fumbled at the competition and he was a dope artist, but he couldn’t seize the moment. Then you have those who are talented and who can win the crowd. And that’s one of the things I did. I think I was the only person from Richmond there in New York in such a hostile environment. The guy from Baltimore had a million people there. I had to mentally win the crowd because what happens is the crowd had to choose who the winner is overall.
On why this battle was different than others…
I’ve been in a couple of battles, but this one was more magnified to the point where the other battles are regular battles. Guys around the way. Local crowds cheering you on. This one you had celebrities there like Mobb Deep was there. Buck Shot was there. Sway was there. Also, I was in a completely different city. I knew no one there it was just me and what I knew and my talent. It was a growth experience and at the same time. The magnitude was so much better. They [Converse & DTLR] did an awesome job they treated us like stars… courtesy t-shirts and signing autographs. They made us feel like we was apart of something big.
On what he received as the rap battle winner…
I got a shopping spree with DTLR. I got a single recording deal with DTLR, which I record at the Converse studio in Brooklyn. The single will be distributed to all DTLR stores and on DTLR radio constantly. I will be going on Sway in the morning soon. Then, MTV after that.
On the Trinidad James and Maino, South vs New York beef…
For one, I think New York rappers need to quit complaining. Honestly, I think you have to adapt to the times. I’m not saying you should change your morals and the way you do things. But, you need to adapt. I’ve seen a couple of NY artist do it, but that’s what you have to do is adapt to the times. I am very proud of the southern music even though I don’t agree to a lot of it. For the longest time, New York had things on lock and now that the south have it, I feel a lot of hate going on with the northern people…it’s all good. I just think people need to grow up and make music. Do what they feel is in their heart. Whether they make it big or not, as long as you did what you felt was right – at the end of the day that is what’s important.
On how he differs from other rap artists…
I bring a combination of old school hip hop and a little of the new. Even though I’m 31, I’m very hip to whats going on now and I’m able to talk the slang. I’m able to relate to the younger people. So I’m able to keep myself “old hip hop” and give off a message and do things like the old artist would like tell stories like Slick Rick and Nas did. Being able to paint those pictures where you can listen to it and it actually make you feel like you were there when they was telling a story. I think this is what’s missing, ultimately, is substance. Instead of everyone talking about popping molly and things like that. So, I think that’s what I will be bringing to the table.
On any future projects…
I do…actually the mixtape. This will be hosted by a DJ named, DJ Swerve Danerio. He is a big DJ here at Power 92. Then, after that, I will drop an EP called Single Print. After that that the album, Restraint Order.
On his advice to former inmates worried about stepping back into civilization…
Don’t think too much of it because the more you think about it the more you get discouraging. It could be and it definitely could be that the devil is working. You can’t be discouraged. Keep pushing and be strong man and allow God to do his will.
Follow Bravo on Twitter and Instagram @BravoOfVA and listen to his music at www.soundcloud.com/BravoofVa.
Video for “For The Record”:
The Ratchet Report: Comedian Claims Eddie’s the Father, Young Jeezy’s In Trouble Again, Mandela & His Rabbit Ear
Each week Stacks Mag will bring our readers “The Ratchet Report”…. We will highlight hot topics that have made headline news that make us say “Really”….. We will choose one report to receive the “Really Award” for the most down right ratchet thing we have ever heard of…. So sit back and enjoy as we bring to you “The Ratchet Report”!
Will the Real Murphy Please Stand-Up
Eddie Murphy is on the defense about claims of alleged accusations of being the father of rising comedian…. Eddie Murphy popular actor and comedian hired lawyers to mount up on what he states are false claims that he parented a fellow young comedian. Brando Murphy has been threatened by Eddie’s attorney that he has gone on record to stating that he is the son of Eddie Murphy. Letters to Brando Murphy from Eddie Murphy’s attorney state allegations that Brando has gone as far as changing his last name to Murphy and showing up at Coffee Bean & Tea were Eddie often visits screaming, “My father won’t talk to me.” Brando has also joined the “Sons of Comedy” tour with Mason the son of the late great Richard Pryor. Brando replied to Murphy’s attorney stating that he has never stated that he was the son of Eddie Murphy and threatened to sue the comedian for defamation.
The best way to settle this is to call Maury. In the case of grown ass Brando, Eddie you are not the Father!
Rapper Young Jeezy Arrested Again
Young Jeezy arrested after dispute with cops…. We all know Young Jeezy for his boss like rap image and hit songs, however cops don’t seem to feel the same way. On January 21st, police responded to an alarm at the residence of his alleged girlfriend in Alpharetta, GA. Cops weren’t certain what set the alarm off however when they arrived all hell broke loose. Police reports state that when they arrived to the alarm call the request to see ID from Young Jezzy however he refused to cooperate. TMZ reported that Jezzy told officers he would not provide them with his ID and went as far as pulling away while being hand cuffed. The popular rapper was arrested earlier this month for a dispute between him and his teenage son.
Jeezy is the big homie so in the immortal words of him “Wait a minute, everybody balls for the photos. Somebody tell these local hating people I’m global.”
The new 29.5-foot Statute of Nelson Mandela under Fire
South African officials demand sculpted rabbit be removed from Mandela Statue….South African officials are not happy about a new statue in South Africa of one of the world’s greatest leaders. The statue is the second largest exhibit in South Africa that honors Nelson Mandela. However, officials feel it does not represent what the country is proud of. The Department of Arts went on recorded stating that they were not aware that the statue had a small sculpted rabbit in one of the ears. The statue was supposed to represent the devotion and efforts of the country’s first Black president. South African official Mogomotsi Mogodiri is very disturbed by the the rabbit and would like for the rabbit to be taken out without any harm to the statue. Andre Prinsloo and Ruhan Janse van Vuuren stated that they added the rabbit as a discreet trademark for their work.
This situation is defiantly out of control. A signature rabbit in the ear of one of the world’s most influential leaders is straight whack.
This week the “Really Award” goes to artists “Andre Prinsloo and Ruhan Janse van Vuuren”. I’m sure there are a few places they can stick that rabbit and the ear of Icon Nelson Mandela definitely isn’t the place.
EXCLUSIVE: Yung L.A. “God Moves In Ways You Don’t Understand” + Talks Publishing Deal & New Outlook [AUDIO]
If you have ever wondered “what happened to Atlanta rapper Yung L.A.“, he’s still around and I ran into him recently at a local restaurant. The last time I heard his name was in 2013, unfortunately, in the beginning two minutes of Hustle Gang’s “Err’body” song, which appeared on their G.D.O.D. mixtape. T.I. and Dro dissed him for some things that happened a few years prior. So, I curiously wondered if the public would here a diss track from Yung L.A. after that. Nothing ever surfaced (that I know of). Well, what was he doing during this time? Did he ever remove the Duct Tape Ent. tattoo from his face? Hell, I was curious. By the looks of it, he’s doing alright. No sign of the infamous tattoo. And according to Leland Austin (his legal name), he’s in a good place…professionally and spiritually.
Peep our convo….
Bels: What’s been going on with you?
YL: Wow. What isn’t going on with me?
Bels: Well, we haven’t seen you in a minute.
YL: Well, let me say this. What doesn’t go on with L.A.? This ni**a always in some shit. The ni**a always in trouble. It’s always adversity. But, every time we see the nigga [himself], he’s looking good and he looking like he’s maintaining. An he’s always smiling so he must be happy.
But, it’s crazy right now. Shout out to Dirty Money. Shout out to Kalenna (Harper), my new music partner at Phantom Music. And God, you know…wow. You know how it go and it does go like that. Because I would look at myself and ask “how am I writing R&B now?”
Bels: But, you’ve always done the singing-type rap thing anyhow…
YL: Right. But I think when I came out I think I set a sound. I started a sound that never existed until I came out. I don’t think a lot of people understood when I first came out because it was so new. So, music today is like L.A. never left. When you think of an artist staying relevant off of something he did, 4 years ago, then you get to say “well this guy is the truth. He’s the real deal. How’s he surviving through longevity and he not even putting out music?” It’s like, you just dealing with that kind of person.
Right now, we writing R&B. We writing gospel. We writing Rock & Roll. It’s no limit. We writing country. If Taylor Swift was to send us something, we will cut it in the likeness of Taylor. We will reference it and we will send it right to Taylor Swift. That’s what I’m doing now. I currently have a publishing deal situation.
FRAK enters the conversation (he’s L.A.’s publishing partner; pictured above)
Bels: What’s the name of the publishing company?
YL: Frik & Frak. You say, well dam isn’t it the same word. It’s only one letter that differentiate, Frik from Frak. So when you see me and him standing next to each other, we’re totally opposite. But we are really the same. It’s probably only one thing that make us so different. But, when we are in the room together, it’s crazy. When I tell you it’s not a game…
YL: Can you tell her our new phrase?
Frak: IT’S NOT A GAME. IT NEVER WAS. IT’S NEVER GOING TO BE.
YL: Sometimes God move in ways that you don’t understand. But when he moves, he moves. But I’m happy. What can I say? I’m happy. This is the happiest I’ve been in a minute. I’m very very happy.
Of course, we didn’t have time to go into detail about a lot of the “adversities” he’s endured. But, stay tuned because we will finish this conversation. Yung L.A.’s ready to speak the truth about everything and Stacks Magazine is going to give you the exclusive.
On Sunday (Jan 19), Detroit-native Mario Johnson celebrated the one year anniversary of his restaurant, MOJO’s Motown Eatery. The event brought out several local celebrities, socialites, media, family and friends. In the building were Sharlinda and Sabrina Rowe, Khadijia Rowe, Yung L.A., Nicci Gilbert, Devin Michaels, and Jasijah just to name a few. Mario poured on the hospitality with never-ending food tastings. The drinks were flowing as well (courtesy of Exclusiv Vodka) along with ATL Camera Man to keep the atmosphere festive. Additional sponsors included: Lush Cakes, PZI Jeans, Jay Productions, Reinchild PR, and Cupcake Sweet.
If you haven’t heard of MOJO’s, the quaint eatery is snuggled in the West End (a largely Black populated area within the Atlanta city limits). The West End area is pretty historical. It is home of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr’s alma mater, Morehouse College. The all-female institution, Spelman, Clark-Atlanta University, and the now defunct Morris Brown College, are too, close in proximity. With the heavy student population and warmth of other mom-and-pop businesses nearby, MOJO’s Motown Eatery’s appreciation for history and culture has proved to be a great investment for the entrepreneur.
One of the main reasons the restaurant is going into their 2nd year of business is because of its signature burgers and hot wings. Johnson moved to Atlanta 3 years ago from the Motor City bringing his special recipes with him. In Detroit, he owned a carry-out location that garnered a lot of business. So, why not bring that Detroit flavor down south?! For starters, MOJO’s signature burgers offers quite a surprise when you take a bite.
“The specialty is the burger that you all had. It’s a stuffed cheeseburger. It has mushrooms, bacon, and cheese cooked on the inside of the burger. You can get it in beef or turkey. Also, we have catfish and then the wings. Honey Lemon Pepper and Hot Honey Lemon Pepper…those are our signature flavors. You now Atlanta is a hot wing city. So…,” said Mario Johnson, Owner.
And that’s accurate. When you cook hot wings in Atlanta, they better be good! Mario understands wholeheartedly and that’s why MOJO’s wings are said to be some of the best the West End has to offer.
Luckily, other areas of the city may soon get their chance to taste his great food. Mario says he plans to open a second location soon. He is also planning to franchise the business. So, be on the look out for a MOJO’s Motown Eatery near you.
Here are a few photos from the event:
To view the full gallery, CLICK HERE!
If you’re in the Atlanta area, visit MOJO’s Motown Eatery at 530 Joseph E. Lowery Blvd SW, Atlanta, GA 30310, open Monday – Saturday 8:00AM to 8:00PM.
The Ratchet Report: Gosselin Twins Embarrass Mom, Bieber’s Home Raided by LAPD, & ‘Girls’ Lena Dunham #EPICFAIL Globes Look
Kate Gosselin is humiliated by her children on national TV…. Kate Gosselin well known reality star for being the mother of eight children appeared on the “Today” show with her children. The original show “Jon and Kate Plus 8” spotlighted the Gosselin’s all American family from 2007-2009 and went on break after problems in the couple’s marriage. After the divorce and the cancellation of the show Jon & Kate appeared on several talk shows and tours separately. Kate also published four books, with her first two both debuting at #5 on the NY Times best sellers list. Recently Kate appeared on the popular “Today” show with her twin daughters with intentions to show America how great things are going for her family. Kate’s twin 13 year-old daughters Cara and Mady didn’t feel the same way as their mother and refused to agree that reality television didn’t damage their family. Kate appeared to be upset and demand the girls to tell the world that reality TV didn’t damage the family.
HA HA HA…. When keeping it real goes wrong!
Justin Bieber in trouble with the Law again…. Justin Beiber’s LA home was recently raided by LAPD detectives after a search warrant was executed. Initially the detectives issued the warrant after an incident that allegedly involved Bieber throwing eggs at his neighbor’s home. LA FOX news station reported 12 detectives in 8 patrol cars showed up at Beiber’s residence in Calabasas, California. When the detectives arrived, they reported that they noticed what appeared to be a controlled illegal substance “in plain sight.” Long time friend and known rapper Lil Za was the only person arrested during the search for narcotics possession. Lt. Thompson of the LAPD made a statement to LA FOX news, “None of this has anything to do with him being a celebrity. This is a felony crime that we determined had evidence,” he said. “We would do this same level of investigation to anyone.” The cops also seized Beiber’s phone with hopes of finding information that would link him to the egging, however he is more concerned about private naked pictures.
I guess the yokes on you Bieber….
2014 Golden Globes “HOTT Mess” Worst Dress
The best of the worst dresses for the 2014 Golden Globes…. Flash Flash, Click, Click you should fire your stylist for putting you in that Shhh! We have all been watching the Golden Globes for years and the best part has been the Red Carpet. Wither you win an award or not, on this momentous star studded occasion, at least you have the opportunity to show your fans and the millions of potential fans that you are on point. Each year stars walk the Red Carpet with nice suits, tuxedos, gowns or simple fashion but each year we have a few that fail to hit the mark. This year there were several worst dressed celebrities but one in particular that should be acknowledged is Lena Dunham. Lena Dunham is an actress and filmmaker that produced and wrote the HBO film “Tiny Furniture.”
Better luck next year Lena Dunham…you may not have received a 2014 Golden Globe but you did win the Tacky Award!
This week the “Really Award” goes to Lena Dunhan. Can you say #EpicFail? The true essence of “Ratchet” in all sense of the word.
On Tuesday night (Jan 13), “R&B Divas” very own KeKe Wyatt returned the love to all of her Atlanta supporters at her ‘Fan Appreciation Party’. The event took place at the stylish 200 Peachtree, located in the downtown area. Fans of the singer came out to support the new season of TV One’s hit reality show and see a special performance. In attendance were her cast mates, Angie Stone, Monifah, and Syleena Johnson. Other celebrities and industry notables in the building were Egypt Sherrod (radio personality/host), Derek J (“Fashion Queens”), Mimi Faust (“Love & Hip Hop ATL”), rapper Da Brat, Bobby Valentino, Dondria, Gary Wit Da Tea and Juicy (“Ricky Smiley Morning Show”), Kalenna Harper (“Love & Hip Hop ATL”), Amanda Cole (from Envogue), Kash Howard (stylist), Yung L.A., Demetria McKinney, and many others.
The venue was filled with, not only fans, but the show’s production crew. The party was actually being filmed as part of KeKe’s story line for next season. This is probably why her performance didn’t begin until a couple hours after the crowd arrived. However, this was cool for most considering there were several bar set-ups and DJ A-One (“Kandi Koated Nights”) on the turntables. As soon as the songbird hit the stage, though, we were all ready for an outstanding performance. And that’s what we received.
KeKe Wyatt is definitely anointed. The girl can sho’nuff SANGGGGG!!!! She started the show off with several new songs, which we expect to be included on her next album. After going into her Avant-assisted, “You & I”, she called up her background singers to do their thing. Although we were at a party, it felt like church. Several gospel songs were sung and everyone in the place were close to catching the Holy Ghost. The event was pulled off quite well. It’s hard to say when and where the drama took place. But, we guess we’ll have to wait and see when “R&B Divas” returns.
Here are more photos from the party:
To view the full gallery, click HERE or friend us on Facebook @StacksMag!
On January 11, creative minds who are working towards a career in fashion and entertainment filled up The Hookah Spot, in Columbia, South Carolina. The event was designed and hosted by celebrity stylist, Zoe Dupree. Attendees were given the opportunity to learn the proper ways to handle business in in the fashion industry. The Style School, also, taught ways to network and what to expect in the industry. STACKS Magazine’s South Carolina ambassador/contributor, Jeffery Young (@Kiid_Fro), was onsite to catch all the happenings.
Zoe Dupree twisted things up with a surprise photo shoot for participants who no nothing about a photograph studio. Other special guests in attendance were T. Shanell (celebrity stylist), Tyrike Britt (celebrity hair stylist), and Sergio Hudson (winner of Rihanna’s “Styled to Rock”).
Here are a few photos from the event:
Zoe Dupree will continue his Style School event next in Las Vegas and then Charlotte, NC.
To see the full gallery, CLICK HERE or visit us on Facebook/Stacks.Mag.
Photo Credit: Tamyia Allen (@Myia_Byia)
On Saturday, January 11, 2014 elegance united at the GA World Congress Center for the Second Annual Georgia Entertainment Gala. The event shines the spotlight on talented individuals working in the state of Georgia’s entertainment industry. The Black Tie event included a raging 20s theme, red carpet, and an awards ceremony. Many were honored for their outstanding work in film, television and the music industry. Guests were treated to live entertainment and complimentary cocktails and hors d’oeuvres, and more.
What is the Georgia Entertainment Gala? Who’s benefiting from the proceeds? Well, according to their website…
The Georgia Entertainment Gala has garnered the support of a number of community leaders, brands, and organizations thus providing a unique opportunity for sponsors to take part in an unparalleled celebration. With an explosive year under our belt this highly anticipated event will continue to embrace and celebrate the Georgia entertainment industry of yesterday, today and tomorrow.
Benefiting the Art program of Bethune Elementary School and Corporate Code Atlanta. Bethune Elementary is a Title-One school located in “Vine City,” a community in Atlanta’s down town area. It is a predominately African-American school, which encourages students to strive for academic excellence. The Art Program uses a Discipline Based Art Education (DBAE) that enriches student’s learning by connecting art concepts to core subjects that incorporate history, aesthetics, art criticism and production. Corporate Code is a nonprofit program designed to assist displaced men reentering the work force by providing them with interview appropriate attire and career counseling. With the growing number of men in need of assistance in transitioning from unemployed to gainfully employment, Corporate Code provides the a much needed Code to a Second Chance!
The Georgia Entertainment Gala brought out industry executives, talent, and a host of other notables in film, television, and music. Celebrity guests included Ramona Debreaux (V-103), Carl Payne (“For Better or Worse”), Bryan Michael-Cox (producer), Demetria McKinney (“Meet The Browns”), Rashan Ali (Streetz 94.5), Ebony Steele (“Rickey Smiley Morning Show”), Jacob Lattimore (“Black Nativity”), Erica Mena (“Love & Hip Hop NY”), and many more.
Take a look at a few photos from the red carpet: