The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame & Museum to Host FREE Admission Day with Special Events in Honor of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Screen Shot 2015-01-18 at 10.11.56 AM

The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum in Cleveland, OH is hosting its 14th annual FREE admission day in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on Monday, January 19, 2015 from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. The Museum will offer a day filled with live performances, education programs and family activities that will highlight how people use music to find their voice and create a sense of community.

Visitors are invited to experience the Rock Hall’s many exhibits that showcase how Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductees and other artists have used popular music to communicate ideas to a wide audience and bring about social change.  The day of events is sponsored by KeyBank.

In addition to free admission, visitors will be able to enter for a chance to win a Museum membership, as five Family Roller memberships will be raffled off during the day.  For a list of current exhibits and for more information about this and other Rock Hall events, visit http://www.rockhall.com.

Klipsch Audio stage entertainment lineup:

Jason Walker of Sounds of Entertainment will emcee the events.

The Antioch Spiritual Arts Choir, an acclaimed co-ed choir from Antioch Baptist Church who focus on spirituals, folk and gospel music.

West Side Community House’s Summer of Sisterhood program began in 2010 under the leadership of Ali McClain, youth services director.  The program teaches girls ages 10-18 how the power of creative expression can positively change their community and even the world.  The girls work intensively for eight week with professional teaching artists to create original songs, music videos, and live performances of their work.

The Distinguished Gentlemen of Spoken Word, a powerful performance arts and spoken word group comprised of adolescent males (age 12-19) from various inner city Cleveland communities.

Inspire *1* One, a band comprised of former students from Cleveland School of the Arts.

Lake Erie Ink, a writing space for youth is a non-profit that provides creative expression opportunities and academic support to youth in the greater Cleveland community.  LEI works with youth from different socio-economic, cultural and academic backgrounds, using creative writing to increase literacy and social engagement. The organization offers creative expression workshops onsite and off, to youth of all ages, including an after school program, weekly evening workshops for teens, and monthly weekend workshops and open mics.

Foster Theater Programming:

Programming will be taught by the Rock Hall’s award-winning education staff.  Seating is limited. Attendance will be on a first-come first-served basis.

Special Presentation:  “Rock and Roll and the Civil Rights Movement”
This program will explore how a range of artists, from Mahalia Jackson and Sam Cooke to Berry Gordy at Motown and rock and roll pioneer Fats Domino created a popular music that empowered African Americans to take their rightful place in American society. Young people of all races flocked to their performances and embraced their music, which helped to break down the walls and barriers that the Civil Rights movement was fighting against.

Album Spotlight: Marvin Gaye’s What’s Goin’ On
This special presentation will focus on the making and impact of Marvin Gaye’s landmark 1971 album, which still resonates for listeners today. The full album will be played, with no interruption, with discussion to follow. Continue reading

THEATER: “Alive: 55 and Kickin'”, a Show in Harlem with Cast of Singers 55 and Up, Commands Prime Coverage from CBS’ “60 Minutes”

Screen Shot 2015-01-11 at 12.02.55 AM

After airing last Sunday, GBN contributor Becky Schonbrun forwarded me links from “60 Minutes” that were labeled as inspiring “must-watch” material.  So I finally did, and they most definitely are.

cu-vy-higginsen-smiling

“Alive: 55 and Kickin'” creator and producer Vy Higginsen

Alive: 55+ and Kickin’” is a live show that was created by theater producer and former disc jockey Vy Higginsen, who has made it her mission to preserve a special part of American culture: African-American music, both gospel and popular music like soul and R&B. She found a pool of untapped talent, men and women in what she calls their “second half of life” just waiting for their chance to shine.

The music and the stories are uplifting, remarkable and definitely worth your time.  To check them out for yourself, click below:

http://www.cbsnews.com/videos/alive-and-kickin-part-one

http://www.cbsnews.com/videos/alive-and-kickin-part-two

The show reopens this Spring and you can go to http://www.alive55themusical.com to see performance dates and purchase tickets.

Enjoy!

Lori Lakin Hutcherson, GBN Founder and Editor-in-Chief (follow @lakinhutcherson)

‘Get On Up,’ ‘Selma,’ ‘Dear White People’ Score NAACP Image Award Nominations (Full List)

"Dear White People"

NAACP Image Award Best Picture nominee “Dear White People”

“Belle,” “Beyond the Lights,” “Dear White People,” “Get On Up” and “Selma” have grabbed top film nominations for the 46th annual NAACP Image Awards.

The Image Awards will be handed out Feb. 6 in a ceremony telecast live by TV One.

“Get On Up” star Chadwick Boseman, “Selma’s” David Oyelowo, Nate Parker of “Beyond the Lights,” Gugu Mbatha-Raw of “Belle” and Tessa Thompson of “Dear White People” are among the actors who were cited.

Boseman, Oyelowo and Mbatha-Raw are all portraying real-life people.

In the TV heat, ABC freshman “Black-ish” and “How to Get Away with Murder,” Netflix’s “Orange Is the New Black,” BET’s “The Game” and “Being Mary Jane” were among the top nominees. ABC did well, earning three of the five drama-series nominations. Also notable was Lifetime’s scoring seven of the 10 nominations in the two lead acting categories for telefilm/miniseries/dramatic special.

Here is a full list of Image Award nominees:

MOTION PICTURE

Motion Picture

  • “Belle” (Fox Searchlight Pictures/ DJ Films)
  • “Beyond The Lights” (Relativity Media)
  • “Dear White People” (Lionsgate and Roadside Attractions)
  • “Get On Up” (Universal Pictures)
  • “Selma” (Paramount Pictures)

Actor in a Motion Picture

  • Chadwick Boseman – “Get On Up” (Universal Pictures)
  • David Oyelowo – “Selma” (Paramount Pictures)
  • Denzel Washington – “The Equalizer” (Columbia Pictures)
  • Idris Elba – “No Good Deed” (Screen Gems)
  • Nate Parker – “Beyond The Lights” (Relativity Media)
 Actress in a Motion Picture
  • Gugu Mbatha-Raw – “Belle” (Fox Searchlight Pictures/ DJ Films)
  • Quvenzhané Wallis – “Annie” (Columbia Pictures)
  • Taraji P. Henson – “No Good Deed” (Screen Gems)
  • Tessa Thompson – “Dear White People” (Lionsgate and Roadside Attractions)
  • Viola Davis – “The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby” (The Weinstein Company)

Continue reading

10 Year-Old Willie Myrick Escapes Kidnapper by Repeatedly Singing Gospel Song

willie-myrick

10-year-old Willie Myrick in Atlanta escaped a kidnapper in the most improbable way. On the night of March 31, Myrick was outside taking care of his pet Chihuahua. The boy spotted a few dollars near a tree. When he walked over to the money, a man grabbed Willie and forced him into a four-door Honda Civic.

“He was cursing at me, telling me to shut up, and didn’t want to hear a word from me,” Willie recalled to WSB-TV in Atlanta. “He said if I told anyone he would hurt me, like, in a bad way.”

The man drove around for three hours before leaving Willie on the side of a road in East Point, Ga. According to the fourth grader, the reason the man released him is because Willie irritated him with gospel music. Willie sang the track, “Every Praise” by Hezekiah Walker repeatedly until he was set free.

Stranded miles from his home, Willie went door-to-door seeking help. After one person turned him away, an elderly man across the street called the police and contacted Willie’s guardian.  Willie escaped the situation physically unscathed. He was examined at a hospital before returning home.

Community leaders in Atlanta are now stepping up to help find Willie’s kidnapper. According to WSB, a group of churches, civic organizations, and businesses are offering the $10,000 for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the kidnapper.

“Our concern is not just the city of Atlanta boundaries,” said Michael Langford, speaking for the coalition behind the reward. “It’s the society in general. It’s metro Atlanta. We’ve seen a number of attacks.”

But as authorities continue their investigation, Willie’s family is offering their own praise that his love of gospel music might have saved his life.

article by Ralphie Aversa via news.yahoo.com

Soul Train Music Awards Bans Lip Syncing From Upcoming Show

Producers of the 2013 Soul Train Awards are guaranteeing viewers an “100 percent live” show. According to Billboard, this year’s vocalists — Chaka Khan, Jennifer Hudson, Gladys Knight, Tamar Braxton, Candice Glover and Ruben Studdard — will have to bring their A-game because lip syncing is officially banned from the urban music celebration.  “100 percent live,” executive producer Bart Phillips said. “No tracks here.”

Phillips explained that the new rule was put into place to keep Soul Train’s legacy alive. “So many legends were made on the infamous Soul Train stage,” he said. “The music is the core and that is what keeps Soul Train relevant today, both with the people who grew up running to their TVs on Saturday morning and to today’s youth.”  He went on to reveal this year’s motto: “We got soul.”

“It’s a party! People aren’t going to want to miss this,” he added. “We have so many surprises planned. It’s all about the 90s this year!”  Rapper Kendrick Lamar racked up the most nominations with a total six, including best new artist, album of the year and song of the year.  The award show, which will be taped on November 8th in Las Vegas, will air on BET December 1st.

article by Myeshia Essex via blackamericaweb.com

Singer Darius Rucker Gets Street Named After Him in South Carolina Hometown

darius-rucker-e697ea0f63c7db6eDarius Rucker has hit the top of the charts both the leader of Hootie and the Blowfish and as a solo country artist. And now, a street in his hometown bears his name.  The pavement leading to the North Charleston Coliseum in South Carolina where Hootie and the Blowfish played in the 1990s shortly after it opened was renamed Darius Rucker Boulevard on Monday, reports the Associated Press.  

Rucker grew up in the Charleston area and was on hand for the ceremony along with North Charleston Mayor Keith Summey.  Rucker says he may return to the coliseum this fall to play a country set. But first he plays with Hootie and the Blowfish next week at the Family Circle Stadium on Daniel Island.

article via eurweb.com

Cedric the Entertainer, Mary Mary, Niecy Nash & More Set To Headline T.D. Jakes’ MegaFest

8th Annual Jazz in the Gardens Day 2 - Show

Mary Mary

The “Just Churchin’” Comedy Show, Woman of Purpose Concert and the Ball Up Streetball Classic Tour Championship game are just a few of the electrifying entertainment events that will captivate audiences during the upcoming Labor Day weekend.

“MegaFest is about coming together to strengthen each other and our families, and leaving refreshed and ready to help our communities,” said Jakes. “There’s no better way to get inspired than by having fun, creating memories and laughing together.”

Making its triumphant return to the United States for the first time since 2006, MegaFest will be held at the Dallas Convention Center, American Airlines Center and other venues throughout the city. This supersized event marries four of Jakes’ most popular conferences: ManPower, Woman Thou Art Loosed, MegaYouth and MegaKidz with a plethora of entertainment, business and other empowering features for the entire family.

Hosted by Cedric the Entertainer and Niecy Nash, stars of the TV Land hit sitcom The Soul Man, the “Just Churchin’” comedy show is a MegaFest favorite. Slated for Friday, August 30 at 8 p.m. at the Dallas Convention Center Arena, “Just Churchin’” guarantees a flavorful mix of comedic talent, with hilarious, family-friendly stand up routines from seasoned veteran comedians to the hottest up and coming talent. Tickets went on sale June 28.

Continue reading