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Gentleman Jack Real to Reel Tour Giving African American Filmmakers The Platform They Deserve

First published via Houston Style Magazine, June 2017 While last year’s #OscarsSoWhite controversy helped launch a national discussion about Hollywood’s lack of diversity, others have taken the issue into their own hands, choosing to change the narrative by writing and telling their own stories. Now black filmmakers are taking the issues into their own hands, thanks in part to initiatives like Jack Daniel’s innovative “Real to Reel” series, a nationwide competition created to highlight rising African-American directors. Led by Power star Omari Hardwick, Jack Daniel’s Gentleman competition is quickly turning…

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America’s Diversity Gets Reflected in New Disney Films

First published via Houston Style Magazine, March 2017 The creator of the magical world of Disney, like many other figures in American history, Walt Disney was a complicated soul. An entire generation grew up with Mickey Mouse and company, as the Disney name expanded into a global brand. But despite the success, the brand has not been exempt from criticism, thanks in part to racist characters and tired stereotypes once seen in hits like 1941’s Dumbo or the blatantly offensive, Songs of the South. By the time I’d discovered this as an adult, like…

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Friends, Admirers Gather at Rice to Celebrate Pimp C’s Trill Legacy

First published via Houston Press, February 2017 “Do you need help?”  Clearly I did. Not only had I foolishly worn heels, I’d parked on the opposite side of Rice University’s sprawling campus. As I searched for the Rice Media Center, a student offered to help, leading me to the building as we made small talk about the reason the city had come out in droves. A legend was being honored. “Pimp C is speaking tonight? He’s the one from UGK, right?” For a moment I was taken aback before reminding myself that…

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Recap: Drake Brings Charity To #HAW With Houston Celebrity Basketball Game

In a weekend that featured everything from two packed shows to a pop-up shop, Drake‘s third Houston Appreciation Weekend still managed to squeeze in a little time for charity with the Houston Celebrity Basketball Game. Last Sunday, the city flooded into Texas Southern University’s HPE Arena for a celebrity basketball game benefiting the TJ Ford Foundation, Prince Complex Foundation and Sure Thing Inc. Houston’s own Kirko Bangz did the city proud, dropping over 25 points in the first half alone. Also in attendance were Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner and Olympic champion Simone Manuel. #InCaseYouMissedIt: EZAccess TV has you covered. Twitter: @EZAccess…

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Buzzfeed Asked 27 Questions And Gave Us 27 Shades of Struggle

Despite what some may believe, there is no “national spokesperson” for Black Americans. Not Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, or any other name that typically follows statements like “I don’t see them screaming ‘Black Lives Matter’ when it comes to black on black crime.” It’s why figures like Hilary Clinton doing the “dab” was unnerving for some, as too many individuals make the assumption that “knowing Black culture” consists of nothing more than learning popular phrases or dance moves. It’s why we’ve grown fiercely protective of how minorities are portrayed in…

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Town Business: The Relationship Between Houston & Bay Area Hip-Hop

Via: http://dayandadream.com/2015/06/19/bay-area-houston-rap-connection/ The Bay Area and Houston are kinfolk. Two DIY areas that live and thrive on local music sticking to the top and staying there. They’re both robbed, pillaged and adopted by outside cultures to the point where they all blend together. Cooking dance? Bun B says Pimp C started it back in 2000, Lil B says he perfected it. Houston DJs know that you only play the remix of the Luniz “I Got 5 On It,” out of respect. Bay Area rap fans salute Houston OGs and DJ Screw…

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On Rachel Dolezal & The Last Transracial Thinkpiece Ever

Via: http://dayandadream.com/2015/06/16/rachel-dolezal-last-transracial-thinkpiece-ever/ There should be zero capes flying for Rachel Dolezal. Not on an academic level for us to study why one particular white woman who wanted to identify herself as black. Not on a level of letting her pass because she’s done plenty of work for African-Americans as head of her chapter of the NAACP. Damn sure not on a level of “let her be her” when masquerading as a black woman with all of the privilege of a white woman has no benefit for a black woman if the…

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20 Years After Eazy-E Did It: The Legacy Of Eric Wright

Via: http://swaysuniverse.com/20-years-after-eazy-e-did-it-the-legacy-of-eric-wright Before Death Row, Bad Boy or even Roc-A-Fella there was Ruthless Records; the empire that Eazy-E built. In a generation that at times seem to forget everyone not named Pac or Biggie,  even 20 years after his death the legacy left by the N.W.A front man refuses to be ignored. Rising from the streets of Compton via a crew once named the “World’s Most Dangerous Group,” Eazy would transition from crack dealer to rap entrepreneur. Responsible for ushering in what would later be titled Gangster Rap, he stands apart for being one of the…

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In Sauce You Must Trust: The Sauce Factory Explodes Out Of Houston

Via: http://allhiphop.com/2015/03/18/in-sauce-you-must-trust-the-sauce-factory-explodes-out-of-houston/ It was only a matter of time before everyone else caught the beat of what’s been pulsating in Texas for quite some time now. Mainstream be damned, every once in awhile there emerges a sound so unique that it simply can’t be ignored, especially not when the streets have latched onto it, proving that the Lone Star State will no longer be written off as just another regional sound. Much has been made of their past, yet it’s their similar connection to the streets that both shaped and brought…

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#FlashbackFriday How The NFL Got Michael Jackson For Super Bowl XXVII

Via: http://allhiphop.com/2015/01/30/flashbackfriday-how-the-nfl-got-michael-jackson-for-super-bowl-xxvii/ There are few true super stars left in the game, before digital sales and Social Media, artists had to depend solely on radio spins and performances for album sales. Rising to stardom with theJackson 5, as a solo artist Michael Jackson broke a number of barriers throughout his iconic career, from being the first urban act featured on a then fledgling MTV to winning 13 Grammy’s, 26 American Music Awards and having 13 number one singles in the U.S. One of the biggest stars on the planet at the time, in 1993 Jackson would change the…

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