Posts Tagged ‘Harlem’

October 14th was a typical Friday night in Harlem, a little windy but relatively calm until you reached 135th & Lenox.  As we walked by the Schomburg Center for Research In Black Culture  we could smell the food trucks, see the flowing gowns and bowties, but the most intriguing sense was hearing the plethora of voices speaking about the rise of women in Film and TV!  This was the night African Voices hosted the Reel Sisters of the Diaspora Film Festival & Lecture Series event.  Kim Coles, the lively and forever funny mistress of ceremonies, presented Cathy Hughes (Radio One & TV One) with the Reel Sisters Hattie McDaniel Award and Naturi Naughton (from Power) with the Trailblazer Award.  This one event is a part of a two week celebration of women of color in film and media held in various venues throughout New York City.

Before all the awards went out, my associate, Juanita Miller and myself had the opportunity to walk the red carpet and speak with a few of the participants, the award winners, and Carolyn A. Butts, founder of Reel Sisters. Butts was clearly proud of the hard work that her and her team put in to coordinate such a successful event.  “I am very proud of my team for putting this together. This is our way of congratulating these pioneering women for the tremendous roles they play in promoting progress in film and media for women of color!” Butts excitedly stated.

Butts’ gratitude and excitement was contagious as Kim Coles also expressed her feelings towards the event and the progress of women of color in general. When asked if she was excited to host the awards, Coles said “I am honored to be a part of this event, let alone host it, and I am very excited to see Naturi Naughton & Cathy Hughes.  I’ve worked for Cathy for years and can’t wait to see her receive this prestigious award. And Naturi is doing a fantastic job for herself and paving the way for many more to come.”  Coles also mentioned that she is “all about lifting women of color’s voices and an advocate for women. I am also an advocate for men, just not at the expense of women.”  

Phyllis Stickney (The Inkwell & New Jack City actress) talked about her own involvement with uplifting women of color when she discussed her relatively new program designed to assist young women in transition called “Get Wit It.”  The program is filled with workshops to teach young women independence, life skills, and job preparation.  Stickney spoke intensely about the advancement of women of color stating “the support system has changed and we need to give these women an opportunity to have their right of passage!”

On that note, the red carpet was rolled up and we all proceeded to the show.  Kimberly Nichole’s (The Voice) fresh and powerful voice opened up the ceremony. Then Coles vibrantly took the stage and hosted with passion. The audience was very receptive to her boisterous personality and gave an abundant amount of applause when she expressed her view on the progress of women of color in media.  Coles talked about how important it is to stay relative in a world of fast growing technology and for all of us to empower and educate the young women of today.

After a brief video about the history of Hattie McDaniel who had the first black syndicated radio show, Hughes was presented the Hattie McDaniel Award by Kevin John Goff, McDaniel’s great grand-nephew. Hughes although having back pain at the time,  graciously got on stage as the crowd gave her a standing ovation and showed their gratefulness for her hard work.  She spoke eloquently, thanking Reel Sisters for the award and reminded the crowd that hard work does pay off.   She brought to light that her dedication to making it happen was not painless or easy.  Hughes stated, “I remember awhile back I was working day and night on Radio One, I thought I had the first black syndicated radio show and I was so happy!  Then someone told me about Hattie’s. I thought to myself: well then, I will have the first television station!” She gave many accolades to her mother who was “kind and gave everything she could to make someone’s day better ” and how she incorporates that mentality into her work.  Hughes then expressed her gratefulness to the organization for having the ceremony and the importance of women encouraging and helping each other in order to stay progressive.  

Meli’sa Morgan brought down the house with a halftime performance of her hit “Good Love.”  Shortly afterwards, the next announcement was for Naturi Naughton to accept her Trailblazer Award.  From 3LW to being a main character, Tasha on Power, Naughton has fought tooth and nail to make her presence known in the world of music and film. She gracefully took the stage and stood in shock as the crowd rose to give her applause.  In her acceptance speech Naughton mentioned she felt like she “was still blazing the trail” and gave a huge shout out to her parents for believing in her dream.  She represented East Orange, New Jersey giving “thanks to New Hope Union Baptist Church for inspiring her to have this dream and to all the fans making this dream a reality.” Naughton finished with thanking Hughes for opening doors. She added, “who knows if I’d be where I am at right now.”

When all was said and done, Coles wrapped up the ceremony giving thanks to Carolyn Butts, Film Festival Curator Lisa Durden and Council Members Jumaane Williams and Laurie Cumbo for their hard work and dedication to Reel Sisters.  Group photos of everyone involved were taken and then the celebrities took time to take selfies with their fans.  Once everyone dispersed, the attendees took pleasure in taking photos in front of the step and repeat and paid tribute to Reel Sisters for having the event.  As a women of color who is involved in the world of media, attending the ceremony was truly a delightful and eye opening experience.  The amount of support that the men and women have towards the education and empowerment of women of color made the Reel Sisters of the Diaspora Film Festival & Lecture Series Award Ceremony irrefutably necessary. There is no doubt in my mind that the future of Reel Sisters is bright and many women of color will have the opportunities to make their dream a reality because of its efforts.

*Michelle Zattoni is the Director of Public Relations for Lehigh Valley Faces in Allentown, Pennsylvania.

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I’ve recently had the opportunity to hear Macklemore and Ryan Lewis‘, Downtown; a multi-layered and bouncy banger that is complemented by the fast paced yet well enunciated flow of Macklemore. And if that’s not enough for the Hip Hop/Rap aficionado, the song features some of Hip Hop’s most celebrated legends; Kool Moe Dee [of The Treacherous 3], Grandmaster Caz [of The Cold Crush Brothers], and Grandmaster Melle Mel [of Grandmaster Flash and The Furious Five].

Speaking honestly, up until my recent introduction to this song, compliments of my selective viewing of the 2015 MTV Video Music Awards, I’ve generally assumed a “Whatever” regard for the prowess of Macklemore; being a stark critic of lyricism while understanding that my subjective opinion is nothing more than personal perspective, I historically find myself only engaged by the careers of a few Emcees. But after my exposure to, Downtown, I suddenly find myself interested in Macklemore and Ryan Lewis and their trajectory into Hip Hop’s stratosphere and beyond. To know me, D.D. Turner, is to understand that my sudden interest in the duo has been precipitated by the groups willingness to pay homage to the legends by granting them the opportunity to be featured on a mainstream song.

To the Black Emcee/Rapper that didn’t find it necessary to grant a similar opportunity to our beloved legends, you should fuckin’ be ashamed of yourself! So often we hear the argument that Hip Hop culture, albeit universally accepted and celebrated, is ascribed to us as Black people and that it is only because of our permission, that others are able to partake of its concessions. Realizing the arguably extensive roots of Hip Hop culture, I consider this to be factual. However, being the fruit of such a legacy, today’s Black Rapper/Emcee that finds themself endowed with the fortune of mass appeal, has the responsibility of celebrating the legends in a manner that supercedes the mere occasional shoutout reference on a song, and provides the invitation of a feature, much like what Macklemore and Ryan Lewis have done for Kool Moe Dee, Grandmaster Caz, and Grandmaster Melle Mel.

Perhaps the graciousness of the Seattle Hip Hop duo will spark something in their fellow Emcees/Hip Hoppers, placing the realization of their own conscious or unconscious disregard for the lyrical legends before them. Bringing the expression of my perspective to an end, I find myself confronted with the very distinct feeling that we will now begin to see an increase in song appearances by our most celebrated and lyrically capable legends.

Shit! You all should have been doing this from jump.

By the way, Eric Nally…Dude, you’re destroying your knees!!

*Artists seeking guidance on a legendary Emcee capable of holding their own on a mainstream song feature, I bequeath the following list unto thee:

– Chuck D
– Rakim Allah
– KRS One
– Kool Herc
– Afrika Bambaataa
– King T
– Trigger Treach
– MC Lyte
– MC 8ight
– De La Soul
– Big Daddy Kane
– Special Ed
– Bone Thugs & Harmony
– Bahamadia
– Kool G Rap
– Lin Que
– Brother J
– Chubb Rock
– Wise Intelligent
– Everlast
– 3rd Bass
– Rob Base
– CL Smooth
– W.C.
– Jeru The Damaja
– AZ
– Mic Geronimo
– Sauce Money
– Tragedy Khadafi
– LL Cool J

By: D.D. Turner, #TCOHHL (The Chronicles of a Hip Hop Legend)

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Do you remember this cover? Do you recall the feeling that you were overcome with when you set eyes on it for the first time? Tune into #TCOHHL (The Chronicles of a Hip Hop Legend) Radio every Wednesday from 8-10pm est on tenacityradio.com and hear how we are looking to restore those feelings.

On the go? Then tune in to the live show via our mobile app using the link attached below.

http://tenacityradio.mobapp.at/#listen-live/Listen_Live

Or, perhaps you’re interested in catching up on our past shows. Then check out the show archives by visiting this link.
http://mixcloud.com/tcohhl_radio

Because of the great response that The Chronicles of a Hip Hop Legend received at the Harlem Book Festival this past weekend, we are extending the 2 for 1 sale!
For a limited time, when you purchase book #1, Paths of Grand Wizardry, you receive the Advanced Reading Copy of book #2, Cipher and the Lost Relic of Pangea’s Core, for free. That’s right…Absolutely free! That’s 2 books for $15.00 plus the cost of shipping!  Order at http://www.chroniclesofahiphoplegend.com

#free #hiphop #harlem #chroniclesofahiphoplegend
#sale #ddturner #nyc #harlembookfestival #fantasyfiction

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The day of the Harlem Book Festival has finally arrived. If you are in NYC, stop by today and check out D.D. Turner and his literary series, The Chronicles of a Hip Hop Legend. Free promotional giveaways available. And just for today, receive an Advanced Reading Copy of book #2, Cipher and the Lost Relic of Pangea’s Core, when you purchase book #1, Paths of Grand Wizardry. This young adult literary series is absolutely riveting, trail-blazing, magical, and inspiring!
Exclusive, The Chronicles of a Hip Hop Legend, t-shirts will also be available for purchase. We’re at booth R27.

#harlembookfair #chroniclesofahiphoplegend #ddturner #COHH #ciphersreadingcorner

The Advanced Reading Copy of “The Chronicles of a Hip Hop Legend – Cipher and the Lost Relic of Pangea’s Core” is now available. Get if for free with the purchase of book #1 (Paths of Grand Wizardry) at this year’s Harlem Book Fair… Taking place on July 21st.

#HBF #harlembookfair #chroniclesofahiphoplegend #ddturner #COHH

 

Get the Advanced Reading Copy of book #2 (Cipher and the Lost Relic of Pangea’s Core) for free with the purchase of book #1 (Paths of Grand Wizardry) at this year’s Harlem Book Fair…Taking place on July 21st