Posts tagged with "elle grant"

Bts illustration by Kaelen Felix for 360 magazine.

All You Need To Know K-POP

By: Conan Zhang, Elle Grant × Kai Yeo

Korean pop music, known as K-Pop is becoming a global force. With forceful sounds, charismatic performances, and colorful concepts, it is a maximalist’s dream perception of music. The fans are dedicated, if not overwhelming in their dedication to their favorite artists. Recently, the political successes of K-pop fans are making just as many headlines: fans crashed Donald Trump’s Tulsa rally and have been at the forefront of vocalizing issues related to Black Lives Matter. Who are the artists that inspire such loyalty and such action? Read into 360’s introduction to some of the twenty-first century mainstays below.

Seo Taiji And Boys

Debuted in 1992, Seo Taiji and Boys were and influential 3-member band and are known as the first “boy group” in K-pop industry consisting of Seo Taiji himself, alongside fellow members Yang Hyun Suk and Lee Juno. Their debut single, “Nan Arayo (I Know),” was an instantly catchy hit that topped the charts for a record-breaking, seventeen consecutive weeks and propelled the group to pop mega-stardom.

In April 2017 it was announced that Seo Taiji was assembling a group of modern K-Pop acts to cover songs from his past to celebrate the 25th anniversary of his debut with Seo Taiji and Boys. The first act announced for the project was BTS,  with other acts including Urban Zakapa and Younha. The first single from this project, a cover of “Come Back Home” (from Seo Taiji and Boys IV) recorded by BTS, was released with a music video on July 5, 2017.

In case you’re new to K-pop, it might be helpful to add that BTS was also invited by Seo Taiji to perform their rendition of Come Back Home and other acts at their 25th anniversary concert.

PSY

Heard of Gangnam Style? Born Park Jae-sang on December 31 1977, he is better known as the artist PSY. He is a South Korean singer, rapper, songwriter, and record producer. PSY is famous in Korea for his funny videos and stage performances. After releasing Gangnam Style on 15 July 2012, the video crossed over 2 billion views in less than two years (so many that it broke YouTube). This song can also arguably be named the first breakout Korean hit to become popular in the West. The song’s refrain was entered into The Yale Book of Quotations as one of the most famous quotations of 2012.

Since his international success, PSY has gone on to found his own record company P NATION and currently mentoring other artists.

Big Bang

No introduction needed, Big Bang is a South Korean boy band under YG Entertainment. The group consists of four members: G-Dragon, T.O.P, Taeyang, and Daesung; They are named as “Kings of K-pop,” Bigbang have greatly helped spread the Korean Wave internationally. A fifth member, Seungri, left the group and the industry in disgrace following an the Burning Sun sex scandal, of which he was an organizer, a moment that blighted K-pop’s reputation at home.

Eighteen of Big Bang’s singles have been number one hits in South Korea and have remained atop the Melon charts for a record 51 weeks. The group has sold over 150 million records globally, which rank them among the best-selling boy bands in the world. Forbes Korea ranked them as one of the most powerful celebrities in South Korea from 2009 to 2016 (placing 2nd in 2009, 2012 and 2014, and they were the first Korean artists to be included on the Forbes Celebrity 100 and 30 Under 30 list of most influential musicians in the world (2017).

Currently with 4 members discharged from military service, fans are eagerly waiting to see what happens next.

CL 

Lee Chae-rin, better known by her stage name CL, rose to fame as girl group 2NE1’s leader in 2009, one of the best-selling girl groups of all time. As a solo artist, CL made her debut with “The Baddest Female” in 2013 and has continued to pursue her own career following the group’s hiatus in 2015. The release “Hello Bitches” (2015) led CL to become the first female Korean solo artist to place onto the Billboard Hot 100, and the third Korean artist to do so overall.

In November 2016, YG announced the disbandment of 2NE1 after nearly two years of hiatus, and CL subsequently remained under the label. Shortly after leaving YG in December 2019, she released her solo EP project In the Name of Love (2019), consisting of six tracks written during the three years since her previous single “Lifted.” Her debut studio album, Alpha, was released in October 2021.

BTS

BTS, an abbreviation for Bangtan Boys, was formed in 2010 while the group debuted in 2013. The team is made up of seven members including Jin, Suga, J-Hope, RM, Jimin, V, and Jungkook. The members co-write and co-produce almost every song that they perform, marking a shift in the K-Pop industry to including artists in the songs they sing and promote.

Originally intended to be a Korean hip-hop group, they are now producing music in a wide range of genres. Their songs often focused on personal and social hot topics, mentioning mental health, troubles of school-age teenagers.

Having sold over 20 million albums on the Gaon Music Chart, BTS is now the best-selling artist in South Korean history and holds the best-selling album in South Korea with the work Map of the Soul: 7. The group’s numerous accolades include six American Music Awards, nine Billboard Music Awards, 24 Golden Disc Awards, and nominations for a Grammy Award and a Brit Award. They are undoubtedly the current Kinds of K-Pop and have broken through to Western popularity unlike any other artist.

BLACKPINK

Blackpink is a girl group formed by YG Entertainment, featuring four team members: Jisoo, Jennie, Rosé and Lisa. In August 2016, they debuted with their single album Square One, which is features the extremely popular songs “Whistle” and “Boombayah.”

Blackpink is ranked as the highest-charting female Korean act on the Billboard Hot 100 and they broke a huge number of online records since they released “Kill This Love” (2019) and “How You Like That” (2020), each become the most-viewed music video within the first 24 hours of release. Though this record was eventually broken by BTS, it is nonetheless just one of many examples proving the quartet’s impact on society.

IU

Lee Ji-eun is well known as IU. She is a South Korean singer-songwriter and actress. The name IU is a combination of the letters ‘I’ and ‘you’ which means “you and I become one through music.” She debuted as a singer when she was fifteen with her first mini album Lost and Found (2008). Her work “Good Day” won her five consecutive weeks at the top position of South Korea’s Gaon Digital Chart. In the year of 2019, “Good Day” was ranked number one on Billboard’s “100 Greatest K-Pop Songs of the 2010s” list.

NCT

NCT are a K-pop group created by SM Entertainment. NCT stands for Neo Culture Technology, and the idea is that they’re a group of infinite members who are constantly shifting into different sub-units in different cities around the world. Currently consisting of 5 sub-units – NCT U, NCT 127, NCT Dream, NCT 2018, WayV.

Currently, NCT is made up of 21 members – we know, it’s a handful! The members are: Taeil, Johnny, Taeyong, Yuta, Kun, Doyoung, Ten, Jaehyun, Winwin, Jungwoo, Lucas, Mark, Renjun, Jeno, Haechan, Jaemin, Chenle, Jisung, Xiao Jun, Yang Yang, and Hendery.

After debuting in 2016, they have won 7 awards from 19 nominations and are continuing their stardom today. Pionerring the “noise music” trend and have so far been the only ones that do it well – “Simon Says.” Find out more information about them through their show NCT Life streaming on YouTube for free.

TWICE

Like many of today’s K-pop acts, Twice originated from a reality competition show. The 2015 series Sixteen involved that many JYP entertainment “trainees” – the term used for aspiring idols-in-training, preparing for a potential debut. After a series of challenges and fighting for a place in the final lineup, the remaining nine formed a new ensemble, also known as Twice.

After the announcement of the label’s new girl group, founder and CEO of JYP explained that Twice refers to the act of making an impact “once through the ears and once through the eyes.” As so, the group’s fame has been propelled by hit after hit of vibrant sound through bright and colorful music videos. Their unique sound can be heard especially in “TT” and “Cheer Up.”

More on K-pop

These men and women are just of a few forcing open the door to K-Pop in the west after being mainstays in South Korean and Asian popular culture for years. This list features artists from the first to third generation of K-Pop stars, known as the generations to push international boundaries of popularity. In this new decade of the twenty-first century, K-Pop is more popular than ever. Stars of the fourth generation, coinciding with the Gen Z age group, are achieving international successes early on in their forebearers above could only dream of just years ago. A great deal of this success is owed to the listed artists, who have collectively decades breaking barriers and sharing music. New groups like ITZY, TXT, Ateez and Enhypen are achieving new heights, learning from the elders while paving the way for the future.

Twitter’s Future with Bitcoin

By: Sean Fontno, Elle Grant × Vaughn Lowery

Jack Dorsey always had a niche for technology. Back in 2000, he thought to himself, “What if you could share your status with all your friends really easily, so they know what you’re doing?” 6 years later, Jack Dorsey posted the very first tweet: “just setting up my twitter,” and became the company’s chief executive officer. In 2010, Dorsey started investing in the social networking company Foursquare and launched “Square.” Square lets people receive credit card payments through a mobile phone or computer. With his knowledge of social media and Square, it doesn’t seem like much of a surprise for Dorsey wanting to bring Bitcoin and Twitter together, creating something that can quickly connect people and their money.

What is Bitcoin? It’s a currency created back in 2009 by an unknown person using the false name of Satoshi Nakamoto. Have you ever been to the arcade or to the casino and received tokens or chips? Similarly, you must exchange real currency for cryptocurrency. Cryptocurrency is a digital currency that’s just like the normal United States Dollar (USD) but is protected by cryptography, which makes it impossible for scammers to attack this form of currency. It allows you to make payments online and money is easily moved place to place, account to account, with no credit card fees. With cryptocurrency being decentralized, YOU own that money. 

Along a contributing factor to this evolution in currency technology are NFTs. NFTs (non-fungible tokens) are the tokens used to buy things in cryptocurrency. NFTs helps the owner, artist, etc, earn a percentage of all the sales. It protects the unique original work being sold because in this day in age, everything is being used for something and wouldn’t you want your rightly earned money for that? They create an immutable record, keeping note of every sale. It’s the new modern step to your work or business. All you need is a smart device and an internet connection, and with just those two things, Dorsey’s goal to reach a worldwide audience will definitely be achieved. Especially as there are already 192 million daily active users on Twitter. 

Jack Dorsey sees a new chance to bring cryptocurrency into Twitter in the modern moment. Dorsey, who has been supporting Bitcoin for years, even discussed with his investors about the next steps. He told them it would help the company keep up with new market strategies. He explains how the native currency can help them move products like Super Follows, Commerce, Subscriptions, and Tip Jar. Dorsey sees this as an opportunity to “…reach every single person on the planet,” instead of doing the regular market-to-market approaches. So, Dorsey’s goal to always stay connected with people continues to be in play.

Bringing Bitcoin to Twitter seems like it will give businesses from small to big an option to increase profits and reach more audiences. With Bitcoin, you can create your own fees, avoid fraud, and kiss “three business days” goodbye! Having these benefits accessible on Twitter could be the next step for the social media of the future. 

Lamborghini Huracán STO

“Can perform a corner without losing its speed, there is no secret, only a matter of overall balance.” Andrea Caldarelli 

By: Conan Zhang, Elle Grant × Vaughn Lowery  

The Lamborghini Huracán first debuted at the 2014 Geneva auto show, and it is nearing 17,500 sales nationally, making the Huracán of the most popular cars in the United States. In the year 2022, This legendary model displays its prowess in a powerful performance! The “Super Trofeo Omologato,” in short as STO, is making its name in the Lamborghini Huracán family.

The Huracán STO is the most powerful Huracán ever made, created with only one goal: to deliver the most genuine feeling of a track car in the body of a road-legal machine. The car is inspired by the racing heritage of Lamborghini Squadra Corse’s one-make race series, featuring the Super Trofeo EVO and also GT3 EVO model, which won 3 times at the  24 hours Daytona and twice at the 12 hour Sebring race. In this car model, drivers are provided with the opportunity to enjoy the ultimate race experience every time they take to the road. 

Once again, 360 Magazine is excited to be invited to the exclusive Lamborghini Lounge NYC; the opening of this site coincides with the debut of Huracán STO! This private space is located at 533 W 26th Street in the heart of the Chelsea district. The space was designed in an extravagant way offering us and other users the most luxurious experiences. The sound system in the room provided by Bang & Olufsen brings forth a progressive listening experience, maximizing the atmosphere of rallies and parties that can be held in the space. All the rooms here feature Italian furniture by Living Divani, while the kitchen is furnished by La Dolce Vita, allowing all the guests to not only enjoy driving Italian but also living Italian. Most excitingly, 360 had the chance to see and drive the 2022 Lamborghini Huracán STO with the guide with a Formula 1 Racer from the Lounge.  

Design 

The exterior is designed to achieve the balance of being both powerful and functional. It inherits the appearance of the Huracán Super Trofeo EVO while being even more aggressive! The usage of carbon fiber in the model makes up 75% of the body panels, which means every part viewable to the consumer’s eye is made of carbon fiber. This unique configuration makes the car 88 pounds lighter than the Performante model. 

The one thing extraordinarily unique about the design is in the front of the car. It is called the “Cofango” – a specially designed body component that incorporates the front hood and fender. It looks like a stylish clamshell made purely of carbon fiber resting on the head of the car and it can be lifted as a whole. 

When we move our sight to the back of the car, there is an exaggerated double-profile rear race wing that can be adjusted into 3 positions. It will provide 714-925 pounds of downforce, equivalent to the weight of a highland cow! On top of the car is a central shark-fin along with several air scoops that helps drag optimization and an ideal aerodynamic performance. Compared with the Performante model, this vehicle is 37% more aerodynamic efficient. 

Compared with the 2021 Lamborghini Huracan EVO RWD Spyder, which 360 had the opportunity to test drive last month, the drag coefficient is much better on the STO model, as the EVO is a Spyder version where the drag force is extremely high with the top down. 

Performance 

The rear-wheel-drive not only contributes to making this car’s ability to drift and turn in a more sophisticated way but also assists in making the car lighter than the AWD models. It is equipped with rear steering that makes handling even more precise. With a V10 naturally aspirated 640 hp (470 kW) power plant, it produces a torque of 565 Nm, at 6,500 rpm. These components combined provide an acceleration of 0-62 mph in 3.0 seconds, 0-124 mph in 9.0 seconds, and a top speed of 192 mph. 

The brakes on this car absolutely provide us with a race evocative adrenaline! The CCMR Braking System, which is directly derived from F1, is now built into the carbon-ceramic brakes that help stop this speed monster in 3 seconds when driving at 62 mph. 

Technology 

When we settle into the driver’s seat, there features a delicate touch screen on the center of the console. New Human Machine Interface (HMI) is equipped on the car, which helps the users to control the drive mode, monitor tire pressures, and tracks brake temperatures. The car is exactly what is needed to be a champion on the track day on the weekend without sacrificing the high-end features of a technologically advanced model. What is more satisfying is that the STO Connected Telemetry System will record a splendid performance which drivers can use to check our phones anytime and everywhere. 

There are 3 driving modes that one can choose on the steering wheel – STO mode which is for daily driving, Trofeo mode which is for a fast and furious track driving experience, and Pioggia mode that adds huge traction designed expressly for driving on the wet surface.

Besides those technical features that help monitor the Huracán’s day-to-day performance, this car also features more classic modern features such as Apple Car Play and USB cables for convenience on the daily commute!

Conclusion 

This stunning beast of a vehicle starts at USD 327,838, which is surely more expensive than the RWD Huracán EVO. People may doubt whether it is worthwhile spending more on a car that is both a daily vehicle and born for the track. The answer, from experience, is this STO model is a supercar of its kind and features peak performance qualities across the board – the STO stands in a class of its own. In a look towards the future, Lamborghini has announced that they will go completely hybrid on all model lines beginning in 2024. Despite this development, we are glad to still be living in an era where the STO still shines on stage, or rather, the track. 

Pre-order now.

Photos by: Anthony Marotta

Edited by: Jeff Langlois

Vaughn Lowery illustration by Allison Christensen for his book Move Like Water x Be Fluid produced by 360 MAGAZINE

Move Like Water × Be Fluid

By Katrina Tiktinsky

Vaughn Lowery, founder and publisher of 360 MAGAZINE, is set to release his first book this month. Move Like Water × Be Fluid is a stunning memoir documenting the author’s journey from a childhood in the Detroit’s subsidized, section 8 housing to a successful career in fashion and media. The arc of this remarkable passage twists and turns in surprising ways, ensuring readers will believe in the concept that this life truly is what you make it. The text will debut as an exclusive multi-volume installation within 360 MAGAZINE and marks the inception of the brand’s foray into publishing.

This provocative coming-of-age story explores the power of branding strategy, a technique the writer developed at an early age and carried with him throughout his lifetime. Lowery, from the time he was a young child, is able to comprehend that one’s innate, individual self is their greatest commodity in life. Through the highs and lows that inform his experience, he stays true to that ideal. Lowery puts forward a raw and compelling narrative of a child, and later a man, who repeatedly picks himself up, reimagines his life, and finds innovative ways to move forward. The self-empowerment so emblematic in Lowery’s character and story promotes readers to adopt the author’s tactics in their own lives.

The influence of prominent civil rights leader Joseph Lowery, the writer’s grandfather, is prevalent in this work. A beacon for both hope and progress during the Civil Rights Movement, the legacy of Joseph Lowery weighs heavily on the narrator. This, along with his upbringing and existence as a black man in America, make Lowery both introspective and contextually aware when it comes to race. Moreover, draws parallels between the movement his grandfather championed and led, and the Black Lives Matter movement of today, exposing the failures of our system and calling for meaningful, systemic change. Both Joseph and Vaughn Lowery are members of the first intercollegiate historically African American organization Alpha Phi Alpha. Lowery simultaneously considers the work he can do, as a singular human being, to forward social justice causes in his day-to-day life and interactions with others. 

In 1920, his grandmother, Agnes Christine Moore Lowery (the little girl in the blue dress, also a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha), came with her grandmother to become the first black to vote in Tennessee. The kids’ book, The Big Day, depicts their journey the day she voted, now available on Amazon here.

Photo of LaJUNE by Armon Hayes for 360 Magazine

Photo: Armon Hayes, Talent: LaJUNE

360 Magazine is also now selling one of a kind home goods via Chairish, a curated marketplace for the best in vintage and contemporary furniture, decor and art. Check out this piece designed by 360’s founder Vaughn Lowery.

In the year 2020, which has been afflicted with an overwhelming amount of change, there has never been a timelier moment for insight from a man like Lowery. As mentioned, Lowery’s deep ties and connections to racial justice in America feels incredibly relevant, as do his thoughts on digital media, something Lowery pioneered years before COVID-19 forced the world hurriedly online. Constantly at the forefront of social change, Move Like Water × Be Fluid offers an understanding of the current moment, yet looks forward to the possibility of an evolved, cosmopolitan world. One that Lowery aspires to through all his works, including this installation and 360 MAGAZINE.

As we follow the author through grade school, high school and on through Cornell University, we collect advice from a myriad of powerful secondary characters. From all walks of life, these secondary support systems offer Lowery the push he needs to continue on striving towards something better. We watch Lowery model the work ethic of his admired older sister, gain confidence from an encouraging teacher, change the trajectory of his life due to a neighborhood mentor, and learn from the critique of a Residential Advisor. This self-help-book stands apart for never failing to appreciate the importance of an individual’s support system. Fittingly, while the book catalogues Lowery’s journey to success, it inspires and encourages readers in the same way Lowery’s community uplifted him – to take action towards a meaningful life.

Comparable titles to Move Like Water × Be Fluid include other stories of individuals who later turned to publishing their experiences in self-help books. Numerous celebrity examples include Becoming by Michelle Obama, Shoe Dog by Phil Knight, or The Path Made Clear by Oprah Winfrey. These titles, as well as Lowery’s first book, all feature introspection and explanations regarding the course of the authors’ lives. 

The following descriptions outlines the chapter-by-chapter journey within Move Like Water × Be Fluid.

Chapter 1: The beginning of Lowery’s journey is marked by his complicated childhood in Detroit, distinctly connected to his sense of place and community. Financial struggles and surroundings reminiscent of the song “Gangsta’s Paradise,” as well as the author’s early experience with assault contextualize the course of Lowery’s life.

Chapter 2: A childhood mood, coupled with the realization of his intelligence, swiftly changed the direction of Lowery’s life. Following a move to New Jersey to live with his older sister, Lowery’s early experiences of racism shine a light on his passion for racial justice today. The opportunity to participate in an honored education program again changes the trajectory Lowery follows.

Chapter 3: This chapter offers insight into the ups and downs of high school, a narrative many are familiar with. Yet, Lowery’s poised observations throughout the chapter reflect his early understanding of the world.

Chapter 4: After a remarkable yet complex journey through high school, Lowery achieves the first of many dreams by gaining the chance to attend Cornell University in New York. At Cornell, he is able to expand his understanding of self and what he hopes to accomplish.

Chapter 5: Saks Fifth Avenue recruits Lowery to work in their corporate office, marking Lowery’s first foray into the world of economics and fashion. The advice he gains from mentors in the field prompts him to shift towards a career in acting and modeling, supplemented by working in the Medicare Department of U.S. Healthcare.

Chapter 6: New York, in all its hectic nature, pointed Lowery west towards California where he could further capitalize on his talents in the entertainment industry.

Chapter 7: This chapter details one of the events in Lowery’s life for which he is best known: his commercials as “Joe Boxer Guy” that overwhelmed the nation. Following ups and downs in Los Angeles, this success cemented Lowery’s understanding of his own talents as well as his ties to L.A.

Chapter 8: Following an offensive home invasion, Lowery pivots to continue embracing what life throws at him with appearances on NBC’s “Scrubs” and “America’s Next Top Model.”

Chapter 9: With plenty of capital and the space to complement his next steps, Lowery founded 360 MAGAZINE in 2008, powering through the tidal wave that was the recession all due to his own brains and the belief in his product and brand.

Chapter 10: After another painful reminder of the inadequacies of the justice system in America due to an unjust prison stay, Lowery’s comprehension of what is truly important is once again realigned. Despite his negative experiences, his magazine is able to be on the cutting edge of the Los Angeles scene.

Chapter 11: The number 360 is ubiquitous to Lowery – one embodies the other. His appreciation for both his own capabilities and expertise, as well as the ones of others, assures his magazine and brand are constantly evolving. 

Chapter 12: Thinking on the future following the tragic death of a friend, Lowery is nowhere near finished and is more than ready to continue is many metamorphoses. He now exists in a space where he strives to empower others, all around the world. 360.

Move Like Water x Be Fluid, by Vaughn Lowery, is available this month exclusively on the 360 MAGAZINE’s website. 360 MAGAZINE has received numerous accolades, and has recently been featured on Dancing with the Stars. Stay in touch by following both Lowery (@vaughnlowery) and 360 (@360magazine)

Additionally Vaughn has an audio book titled, “Say Uncle: The Story of Vaughn Lowery” which loosely based on his childhood. It is available for here on Amazon Music. For additional info on Vaughn Lowery visit Wikipedia and IMDb.

Move Like Water x Be Fluid hard jacket on Blurb.

Move Like Water x Be Fluid is available in hard copy format at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Google Books and Target.

Move Like Water x Be Fluid audio book available on Audible.

Signed copies of Vaughn’s memoir,  Move Like Water × Be Fluid, are available in our shop.

Kaelen Felix illustrates Ritchie Torres for 360 Magazine

TRAILBLAZER: CONGRESSMAN RITCHIE TORRES

By Elle Grant

January 3rd marked the commencement of the 117th Congress and the swearing of its newest members. For many, it marked the beginning of a new dawn. One that will be followed by the inauguration of TIME’s People of the Year, President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris. They will replace President Trump on Inauguration Day on January 20th. Yet several other remarkable individuals were elected this year and sworn in a bit earlier, solidifying the 117th Congress as the most diverse in American history. One of these representatives is a freshly elected Ritchie Torres, a 32-year-old politician serving the 15th congressional district in the Bronx, New York. Torres is the first openly gay Afro-Latino man elected to Congress, and one of two gay Black men that will serve in the 117th Congress, a distinction he shares with fellow New Yorker Mondaire Jones. 360 Magazine had the opportunity to sit down with Torres to discuss the story of his life, the issues he considers vital, as well as pick his brain for his thoughts on current events.

“I am a product of the Bronx,” Torres says of his childhood, “I spent most of my life in poverty.” Ritchie Torres was raised by a single mother, one of three children, in the Throggs Neck neighborhood of the East Bronx. He recalls the difficulty his mother had raising a family on minimum wage in the 1990s, as well as the awful conditions of the public housing he grew up in. Torres recollects these experiences with the soft yet fluid countenance that marked his speech throughout 360’s conversation with him. He floats between topics and memories with ease.

He recalls, with a rich sense of irony, the construction of Trump Golf Links as a child. “My life is something of a metaphor. I grew up right across the street of what became Trump golf course and actually something funny, is when the golf course was undergoing construction, it unleashed a skunk infestation. So, I often tell people I’ve been smelling the stench of Donald Trump long before he became President.” His own situation, compared with the government subsidized construction of the Trump Golf Links, deeply unsettled Torres’ image of society. He says collectively of his youth, “Those experiences shape not only who I am as a person, but as a public official.”

Such injustices prompted Torres to seek to become “The change that you wish the see in the world,” he says, quoting Mahatma Gandhi. He named public figures such as Abraham Lincoln, Franklin Roosevelt, Lyndon Johnson, Ted Kennedy as role models. He got his start as a housing organizer and eventually took the leap of faith to run for public office, becoming New York’s youngest elected city official at age 25. He had “No ties to the machine. No ties to the dynasties of Bronx politics, but I was young and energetic. I knocked on thousands of doors,” he claims that kind of face-to-face contact won him that election. Torres then became the first LGBTQ+ official elected from the Bronx.

“I think it has several implications,” he says when asked what this early accomplishment meant to him. “I mean, first, we are all products of our identities and our lived experiences. Right? Who we are as people shapes what we do as policy makers. It is important to have LGBTQ policy makers in the room where decisions are being made. A wise person once said, ‘If you don’t have a seat at the table, then you are probably on the menu.’” Referring to his 2020 election win, he says “My election means that LGBTQ people of color, in particular, will have a seat at one of the most powerful tables, the United States Congress.” He calls the reality of his election both empowering and normalizing. “I am a symbol of possibility.”

“I met Mondaire for the first time four years ago,” Torres says of Mondaire Jones, U.S. representative of New York’s 17th congressional district. “I remember when I met him for the first time, we had a conversation about the lack of LGBTQ representation of color in New York state politics. And I never imagined that four years later, he and I would become the first openly LGBTQ Black members of United States Congress.”

Congressmen Torres recognizes that his path, though marked with accomplishments, has not been one of only highs. Torres stands apart as a public official on the national stage who is open about the lows of his life and his struggles with mental health. When asked why he chooses to be so transparent, he says “I felt a deep sense of obligation to speak openly about my own struggles with depression in order to break the silence and shame and stigma that surrounds mental health.” He seeks to evolve, not perpetuate, the current ideas surrounding mental health. He hopes to show that “there is a way forward” out of difficult moments, which for him were struggles with substance abuse, the loss of a friend, and moments when he considered taking his own life. But seven years later, Torres was elected to city council. “I would not be alive today, much less a member of the United States Congress, were it not for mental health care which saved my life.” He aspires to send a message that “Recovery is possible. You can take an antidepressant, as I do every day, and find normalcy and stability” and achieve feats like being elected to Congress.

The 117th Congress is slated to be the most diverse in history. Torres says of this reality, “I think American is increasingly becoming a multi-racial, multi-ethnic inclusive democracy. We are witnessing the collapse of politics as an old voice network. I am part of a new generation of young leaders every bit as diverse as America itself. Congress is becoming what it always should have been, a miniaturization of America itself.”

Torres acknowledges the year 2020, monumental in many ways, as harrowing for his Bronx community. “COVID-19 has been a catastrophe for the city and the country, and the South Bronx has been the epicenter of COVID-19. The South Bronx had the highest rate of COVID-19 morbidity and mortality during the peak of the pandemic. And just as destructive as COVID-19 itself were the deeper inequalities that were brought to light.” He argued that the coronavirus exposed the deeper health inequalities, racial inequalities, and class inequalities laid bare by the pandemic.

These issues are at the forefront of Torres’ mind in thinking of his work as a legislator. When asked what he saw as the first step to rectifying the rampant racial injustice in the United States, he answered “the first thing is to bring greater accountability to policing in America,” an argument familiar to many Americans following the deaths of Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and George Floyd and their ensuing protests. As the Black Lives Matter movement swept the nation with greater momentum than ever before, cries for justice and defunding the police became common across the country’s cities. “Where there is no accountability, there will never be an end to police brutality” Torres says, being especially critical of qualified immunity in the United States.

Torres heads to Congress as a man with a mission regarding many issues. He himself declares “My great passion is affordable housing,” reflecting a long journey working continually in the housing sphere. He seeks to secure far greater funding for public housing in New York City and to expand the Section 8 program. The Section 8 program, also known as the Housing Choice Voucher program, created by an act in 1978, provides assistance to eligible low- and moderate-income families to rent housing in the private market. Torres says, “For me the surest way to stimulate the economy is to put money in the pockets of struggling families.” In order to do that, he believes the solution is an expanded child tax credit, which he describes as the single largest tax expenditure in America, yet he finds fault with a system that is “so regressive that it excludes a third of American families. Particularly the poorest families in America.” Torres’ passion shines through when he discusses the subject, detailing how this solution could slash childhood poverty by 40% in the span of the year. He calls its potential an absolute “game changer.”

Without question, affordable housing and tax reform are the first issues Torres hopes to address after being sworn in to the 117th Congress on January 3rd, 2020. “For me, the central mission of my life is to fight poverty in America. Racially constructed poverty in America. The South Bronx is said to be the poorest district in America and if we can make progressive policies work in the South Bronx, we can make them work anywhere.”

360 Magazine also had the opportunity to discuss a variety of current issues with Congressman Torres, one of which being the then impending Senate run-offs in Georgia. Following races too close to call in November 2020, Republican incumbent David Perdue is facing a challenge from Democrat Jon Ossoff. Additionally, GOP appointee Kelly Loeffler is defending her seat against Democrat Reverend Raphael Warnock. The election is vital because it will determine which party will control the Senate. “The stakes are supremely important,” Torres says of Georgia. “As long as Mitch McConnell refuses to bring critical bills to the floor for a vote, there is a limit to what we can accomplish. For me, Mitch McConnell is the single greatest obstruction on the path to progress. Winning those two seats in Georgia are essential.”

Regarding the impending mayoral race in his home of New York City, as well as early polls that display former Presidential candidate Andrew Yang as the frontrunner, Torres is coy. “The mayor’s race is wide open. Anyone who claims to have it figured out is lying.” He goes on to affirm “It is full of more than one credible candidate.”

“To be clear, I never announced that I wasn’t going to be in the squad.” Torres says, referring to ‘The Squad’ of United States Congress, composed of Congresswomen Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a fellow New Yorker, Ayanna Pressley, Ilhan Omar, and Rashida Tlaib. With new young progressive politicians like Torres joining the fray, claims of expanding membership are common. Torres, along with the aforementioned Mondaire Jones, as well as Congresswoman Cori Bush, Congresswoman Marie Newman, and Congressman Jamaal Brown are commonly referred to as impending members.

Instead, Torres clarifies, “I would never issue an announcement that I would not be a part of something. That would be an odd thing to do. Whenever I’m asked about the squad, I simply state that I’m my own person and I prefer to be judged on the basis of my own story and my own record, on my own terms.” He goes on to assert he is willing to work with “anyone and everyone in the service of delivering to the people of the South Bronx. That is my highest priority.” Torres is clear in this declaration that he is willing to work with more conservative members of his own party or the Republican party in hopes of progress.

On a future in politics, Torres affirmed his intent to serve the people in the moment and to “let the dice fall where they may” regarding the future. When asked what wisdom he would impart to a younger generation, Congressman Torres says “We are all only as strong as the support we have in our lives and be grateful for the supporters you have. The friends and family. I would not be here today if not for the friendship of people who believed in me more than I believed in myself. Know who those people are and value them and be grateful for them.”

Update as of 1/14/21, Congressman Ritchie Torres has formally endorsed former presidential candidate Andrew Yang for mayor of New York City. This comes just a day after Andrew Yang announced his campaign in a video titled ‘Why I’m Running,’ which features Torres in it.

Black Pink illustration by Kaelen Felix for 360 MAGAZINE

BLACKPINK Postpones ‘The Show’

BLACKPINK shared today that their highly anticipated global livestream experience THE SHOW will be postponed from December 27 to January 31, 2021 at 12 a.m. EST / 2 p.m. KST, due to safety precautions and current restrictions pertaining to COVID-19 in South Korea.

BLACKPINK said, “We can’t wait to meet our BLINKS as soon as possible, but in order to comply with the South Korean COVID-19 prevention guidelines and to ensure a safe performance, we have unfortunately made the decision to postpone THE SHOW from December 27 to January 31 of next year. Through our concert, we wanted to give you some sort of comfort during these difficult times, but the health and safety of everyone taking part in THE SHOW is our top priority, so, in order to make sure that we prepare for the concert in a safe environment, we have decided to postpone THE SHOW.”

Automatic Refund Details

Everyone who purchased access to BLACKPINK’s THE SHOW via channel memberships will be automatically and fully refunded to their original form of payment starting today and can expect the following:

Fans who already purchased access to THE SHOW will receive emails from YouTube confirming the cancellation and refund. Shortly after these fans receive email notifications from YouTube confirming their refund, the “JOIN” button will reappear on BLACKPINK’s Official YouTube Channel and fans will be able to re-purchase the new channel membership.

How to Buy Access to a NEW Channel Membership

The good news is that Blinks from around the world can NOW buy access to a new channel membership. Fans have two purchase options, both of which include access to the online concert experience on January 31 and additional membership perks. Details on how to purchase and membership options are included below:

Fans can buy access to THE SHOW via the channel membership offer page on desktop and mobile devices, or by visiting BLACKPINK’s Official YouTube Channel and clicking “JOIN” membership on the YouTube website or the YouTube Android app.

Fans can choose from a Standard or Plus channel membership which include the following:

STANDARD: 36,000 KRW / $29.98 USD: THE SHOW livestream, rebroadcast and custom emojis

PLUS: 48,000 KRW / $39.98 USD: THE SHOW livestream, rebroadcast, custom emojis and behind-the-scenes content

Safety is of the utmost importance to BLACKPINK, YG Entertainment and YouTube so we hope fans understand and will join us to celebrate THE SHOW in just a few weeks’ time on January 31, 2021!

Visit BLACKPINK’s BLACKPINK’s Official YouTube Channel for the most up-to-date information on THE SHOW.

Holiday Gift Round-Up

The team at 360 MAGAZINE has curated a list of their favorite products and we’ve put them into a Holiday Round Up to show our readers even more excellent gifts. We know 2020 hasn’t been easy on anyone so this holiday season is the best time to show those one’s you love how much they mean to you with a personal gift. From everything from stocking stuffers or a big gift, for those near and far, these items are sure to be special for your friends and family.  

Check out our favorites below from bottles to snacks to everything in between. 

360 x INTEGRITY BOTTLES

To ring in the holiday season, 360 Magazine launched its very own collection of bottles, stemware, and glasses in collaboration with Integrity Bottles. The bottles are sand-carved by hand with the 360 logo, painted, and etched with our trademark in either deep etch (no color), silver, or gold. The collection features seven products. Use the code “360MAG20” for 20% of your first purchase of glassware from the 360 Magazine collection. Also, the code “GIVEBACK” will save you 5% on a separate order, not limited to the 360 Magazine collection.

Glasses, Decanters & More – Starting at $19.99

SKECHERS DR. SEUSS COLLECTION

All can agree that 2020 has been quite Grinch-y year, so just in time for the holidays, the whole family can dress the part with the new  Dr. Seuss Collection. Available in both women’s and kid’s sizes, even Cindy Lou will love these fun and festive sneakers featuring The Grinch. The Dr. Seuss Collection is available on Skechers.com for $42 – $85. And hey, once you buy, you can go back to your regular at-home schedule… “4:00, wallow in self-pity. 4:30, stare into the abyss. 5:00, solve world hunger, tell no one. 5:30, jazzercize; 6:30, dinner with me. I can’t cancel that again.” – The Grinch. Get your street beat sneakers in style for the holiday season!

Dr. Seuss Skechers – Starting at $42

SUGAR PLUM NUTS AND SWEETS

Mother & son duo Frann and Neil Edley have made it their mission to work together and bring a little more sweetness into the world with Sugar Plum Chocolates, offering premium chocolates and confections to worldwide customers for over 25 years. Using only the finest ingredients for their delectable treats, generations of customers have trusted Sugar Plum with all of their snacking and gift-giving needs and have been coming back for seconds, thirds, and more!  All of their delicious gourmet treats are lovingly hand crafted and made from their bakery and kitchen in Kingston, PA. Ideal for the small get togethers you might be hosting this season, or for sending to a loved one you can’t quite reach. Delicious for all!

Varying Sweet and Nut Boxes – Starting at $11

MUCK BOOT COMPANY

Muck Boot Company for 360 Magazine

The Original Muck Boot Company has been rolling out the sturdiest muck boots for all outdoor activities. From mud to snow, these boots ensure to keep your feet dry and warm no matter the conditions. The camouflage pattern ensures to blend in with all your hunting gear. They are 100% waterproof which makes them a great gift for any outdoor lover. The boots above are currently on sale for $130, marked down from their original price of $205. However, some styles start as low as $100, an amazing price for such a sturdy shoe. 

The Original Muck Boot – Starting at $100

RADO’S WHITE CHRISTMAS

Rado's White Christmas Selection

The Rado Winter Selection for 2020/2021 defines exquisite watches. The selection includes expertly chosen watches that open up infinite possibilities for the new year. The timepieces have been designed to be sturdy while still elegant, so they will last a lifetime. The watches have shimmering accents that will look beautiful no matter the occasion. The watches in this collection make the perfect gift for anyone who values style and wants a high-tech timepiece. Rado offers both men’s and women’s watches which makes these watches a perfect gift for a loved one. 

Rado’s Winter Selection – Prices vary based on selection

BLUE RIDGE CHAIR WORKS

The Caravan Chair Blue Ridge Chairs

Blue Ridge Chair Works makes the most versatile chairs for everyone that loves relaxation. The Caravan Chair is a smaller version of the classic model and is perfect to bring to the lake or beach. It’s also the perfect size to fit in a small room or apartment. Made from sustainable materials entirely in the United States, this is a gift to feel good about giving. There is a variety of styles available on the Blue Ridge Chair Works’ website and these chairs are a wonderful gift for anyone that wants a functional and easy to use seat.

The Caravan Chair – Starting at $148

Hockey NHL illustration by Kaelen Felix for 360 MAGAZINE

NHL All-Star Dylan Larkin Joins BODYARMOUR

BODYARMOR Sports Drink, the fastest-growing sports drink in the category, today announced a new partnership with Detroit Red Wings Centerman and NHL All-Star Dylan Larkin as the brand’s newest athlete partner.

Larkin’s partnership with BODYARMOR makes him the latest addition to BODYARMOR’s impressive athlete roster, including Kyler Murray, Mookie Betts, Christian McCaffrey, James Harden, Naomi Osaka, Mike Trout, Ja Morant, and Megan Rapinoe. In addition to its robust athlete partner roster, BODYARMOR is the Official Sports Drink of the UFC, Major League Soccer, and the US Open.

Larkin joins the BODYARMOR team at a pivotal time for the brand as its growth continues to accelerate and challenge competitors in the category. Now the No. 2 sports drink sold in convenience stores nationwide, BODYARMOR has incredible momentum and is on track for nearly $1 billion in retail sales by the end of 2020.

Tickets on Sale for New Three-Day London Concours

The London Concours presented by Montres Breguet, returns to the Honourable Artillery Company from 8-10 June 2021, expanded with an all-new ‘Style Edition Day’ and a ‘Supercar Day’. Tickets are on sale now, starting from just £25.

Previously held over two days, the London Concours will capitalise on visitor demand for more luxury brand content – from jewellery to bespoke suits – and modern supercars. At the heart of each day will remain the collection of nearly 100 rare and iconic luxury cars of all ages that has quickly cemented London Concours as one of the UK’s top motoring events.

First established in 2017, the London Concours attracts an extremely high calibre of cars and luxury partners to the Square Mile. In 2020, cars were on display across nine classes and three major features. In 2021, the organisers will gather an even higher standard of cars in classes as diverse as The Italian Berlinettas, The Young Timers, Great Marques – Porsche and a 60th anniversary celebration of the Jaguar E-Type.

Visitors to day one of the show, the VIP Preview Day, will be treated to exclusive previews of the cars, along with live judging of the classes throughout the day and an Awards Evening with cocktails and champagne. On day two, some of the world’s most sought-after luxury brands take centre stage, with live watchmaking classes, talks with fashion and design luminaries and a host of luxury shopping boutiques. Day three welcomes a collection of the latest supercars into the venue, lining up alongside the London Concours’ existing selection of vehicles.

The London Concours is famed not just for its displays, but also for its atmosphere. For 2021, the event welcomes a host of new food and drink partners, as well as all-new hospitality experiences, including live mixology, and a Veuve Clicquot drinks evening on each day of the event.

Andrew Evans, London Concours Director, said: “As the London Concours continues to evolve, we’re always looking for ways to develop a show that’s perfectly in tune with our audience’s wants and needs. The message we’ve received loud and clear, both from partners and visitors, is that there’s demand for even more of the luxury, supercar and hospitality elements of the show, which is exactly where we’re focusing for 2021. We’ve always created the London Concours around the idea of an automotive summer garden party and next year, more than ever, London Concours will be a party to remember.”

The London Concours takes place from 8-10 June, 2021. Tickets are available here with 20% off using the code LCEARLYBIRD21

Robert Goggins – Until We Rich

Robert Quentin Lawrence Goggins (born August 3, 1978), American rapper from Harlem, NY. ENTERTAINER AT ROCDASTAR unreleased album IT’S UNTIL WE RICH featuring Hot Single All I Wanna Do and Street Hit Follow Me. Robert Q. Goggins is currently signed to Bentley Records and Robert released his first album to about Spotify in the top songs for 2019. Currently, he embraces his occupation as a jack of all trades, including: Entertainer, Record Executive, Composer, Songwriter, Singer; Commentator, Socialist, Entrepreneur, and Investor, Businessman, Actor, Author, Publisher, Marketer, Video Director, Inventor, Student and a College Graduate.

Goggins’ first stage performance was in 1993 at Amsterdam Community Center in Manhattan, which was televised on the Public Access Channel. In 1997, Rocdastar recorded a collaboration, called “Chilling In The Studio,” with some of his high school mates in New Jersey City. There, they would form a group called “The New Service Click”. In 1998, he and local neighborhood friends recorded a track called “You On Point”, which was produced by Roc Raida. In 1999, he featured a track called “They Say We Rougher” with Jamaica’s own Face Dada, Lady Thug, and Don Cease.

His second stage appearance was in 2000, in Rockaway, Queens at the Allstars Talent Show Network, where he won 2nd Place in the novice category. He also worked with Harlem’s own producer J R Blass. He’s worked with Producer Huggies, on songs like “What You Looking At”, and “They Don’t Want To Fuck Around With Me”. In 2001, one of his Neighborhood friends, A Gutter Snipes introduced him to his cousin Now Reality, who was with True Light Energy. They began working with Producer Diamond Cuts on songs like “Talking The Talk”, “Niggas Is Scared”, “Funny Ass Niggas”, “We Want Fast Money”, and more.

In 2003, he began recording his first mixtape “Threat Spitting That Fire.” The Mixtape features most of the members of his Lyrical Threat Family, as well as artist such as L Onez; Breeze Iceberg; Chynna Blakk; Red Platinum; and DJ Crazy.

In 2004, he would work on his second Double Mixtape called The Crack Team: Another 48 Grams. The Mixtape included appearances from artists such as Shawn Foster, Snapfu, Ninoman, and others.

In 2005, he began working alongside with A Gutter Snipes, where he would appeared on A Gutter Snipes Real!fe Sh!t TV. The show ran concurrent till 2009.

In 2007. He would appear on Internet’s sensation “Video City” alongside neighborhood friends “Millz Lane”, and Tech 9, where he would be interviewed by Nina B. Following this, in 2009, he performed on the Chocolate Thai Showcase in Midtown NYC. He was introduced to Ty Wiz (Wiz Bradley) by Detroit’s finest Timophy “T.A.” Atkins. They decided to record Rocdastar’s Third LP Inspire Freedom Of Speech.

As of April 5, 2018, Goggins signed an Exclusive deal with Bentey Records, and released his first debuted album called The Beginning Of The Truest Movement”. The album is a thirteen track LP, which included music features by A Gutter Snipes, Now Reality, and Red Platinum. Production by Huggies, Diamond Cuts, True Light Energy, and exclusive track produced solely by himself. He’s currently working on his sophomore album called “Until We Rich”. The seventeen exclusive songs included with features by A Gutter Snipes, Charlie Grounds, Rich Nino, MF, and More. Production from D.Cole, J.R. Blass and more.