Posts tagged with "Interview"

All Good Just A Week Ago

If you’re feeling a little bit lonely as a single person during quarantine, there might be a perfect book for you.

For both men and women, “All Good Just A Week Ago: Funny Dating Stories to Help You Keep Your Head in the Game” is chock-full of funny, relatable dating stories put together from interviews.

With teachable moments and unimaginable scenarios, “All Good Just A Week Ago” helps single people keep their heads in the game.

Erika McCall and Niesha Forbes, two best friends, wanted to put their quarantine time to good use, so they set up 50 interviews to gather data and stories for the book.

These stories prove that relationships can make you laugh and roll your eyes instead of cry, all while showing us that we’re not alone.

In 1950, only 22% of Americans were without a romantic partner. In 2019, 124 million Americans were without a partner.

Though the percentage of people in relationships has gone down, the desire to find love and companionship has not.

McCall said, “It’s the year of 20/20 vision, and it’s time for a dating and love revolution.”

Both authors agreed that the revolution begins with this book. With a goal to understand romantic communication and expectations, “All Good Just A Week Ago” uses stories to heal relationships and foster close, loving, committed relationships in a generation obsesses with “hook up culture.”

McCall and Forbes even get into a few of their own stories. McCall herself is single and wants to clear the way for her future husband to enter her life while Forbes is on her way to her third wedding anniversary and hopes that sharing her experience can help bring about mutual respect, kindness and traditional courtship in relationships.

McCall said her story is every woman’s story while Forbes said, “It is critical to know that once you get to a certain age, things you did in your early twenties, all those toxic behavior patterns where you’re not putting your worth above your desire to be with someone, if you don’t do the work on yourself, you will find yourself in your thirties, forties and even fifties, having not learned the important lessons or found true love.”

Following the laughs in the beginning of the book, readers will reach a call to action that encourages men and women to think critically about how to move forward with healthier relationship dynamics.

For more information about the book or to order it, you can click right here.

Photo by @earthquakemgmt

Q&A With Devault & BabyJake

Devault & BabyJake Release Double-Sided Singles ‘Tell Me’ & ‘Blue’.
Electronic deejay & producer Devault and rising star BabyJake have teamed together for double-sided dance singles titled ‘Blue’ & ‘Tell Me’ that are set to be released at midnight. The singles come fresh off a powerful year for both artists, as each released EP’s and collaborative singles in their respective fields. While Devault released a string of audio/visual experiences, most notably RUBY, and collaborations with Manila Killa and Griff Clawson, BabyJake teamed up with Dillon Francis for a small dance EP and debuted his first solo EP project ‘Don’t Give Me Problems, Give Me Wine.’
360 Magazine asked DEVAULT and BABY JAKE, who are also good friends, some questions about their collaboration.

Q&A WITH DEEJAY & PRODUCER DEVAULT AND MUSIC ARTIST BABY JAKE

How did you both get started in music? And when did you first meet?
Devault: I initially started DJ’ing around 12 years old when my older brother randomly brought home a small turntable set and I immediately fell in love. As the years went on and when I was around 18 years old, I decided to start producing, essentially with the mentality of making music that I couldn’t find in my library of current music. Making something exciting; and now we’re here. I first met Jake a few years ago through a mutual friend when he was visiting LA for one of the first times. He ended up crashing at my house for a period of time and we immediately connected.
BabyJake: I first started taking music seriously after I dropped out of college in 2016, but I’ve been flirting with it since I was 8 years old when I picked up a guitar for the first time. Sage (Devault) & I originally met through a mutual friend, Austin Tompkins, when I first arrived in LA. I ended up sleeping on Sage’s couch for 3 weeks, maybe longer, and we’ve been friends ever since.

How would you describe your friendship and the dynamic between you two, did you always had the plan to one day work together and make a song?
Devault: I think we have mutual respect for each other, as when we met we were both figuring out our own paths in the music scene. I think we’ve both evolved greatly as musicians and as people. We always had the desire to make music together, but couldn’t find the right timing. Luckily, covid was almost a blessing in disguise as it allowed us to jam together for a few days with no pressure and these songs came out of it.
BabyJake: Yeah for sure. We always wanted to do something together, we just needed to wait for a good time to do it. I’m sure we’ll make much more music together as well, I practically see Sage every other day.

Which music artists inspired you? Where did you find inspiration for the two songs ‘Tell Me’ and ‘Blue’?
Devault: Depeche Mode, Daft Punk, and Jamie XX are some of my biggest inspirations. Music that is immediately recognizable to them and them only and that has become a mantra of mine. For our songs, we wanted to just have fun really, get out of our comfort zone and just make genuine dance records, while still retaining our styles.
BabyJake: Honestly there are too many artists to count that inspire me. That being said, I think the inspiration for these songs was less about who we wanted it to sound like & more about what feeling we wanted to establish to the audience. Whatever that feeling is, I’d say we captured it.

What three words would you use to describe your sound?
Devault: Moody, Emotive, & Ethereal
BabyJake: Not sure what 3 words I’d use to describe the records… I’d say everything that comes from Devault is somewhat emotional & deep.

A lot has happened in the last two years for both of you. Baby Jake, you released your first EP and Devault, you did remixes for Rihanna & Maroon 5. What was your personal highlight?
Devault: My personal highlight was releasing my first EP ‘Stay’ in 2018. This felt like it was finally a moment to identify me as not just an electronic artist, but as a genuine musician who can paint an entire world.
BabyJake: My personal highlight was a deep album cut named “Anywhere.” Even though it didn’t do crazy numbers, the production & experience of recording a completely live song with a choir, organ, drums… you name it… was incredible. That was definitely a high I hadn’t experienced before.

What is the thing you missed most during lockdown?
Devault: Missing live shows dearly.
BabyJake: Live shows. I was supposed to be on tour so that’s a real bummer.

What other artists do you want to collaborate with in the future?
Devault: A dream would be working with Toro y Moi or Blood Orange.
BabyJake: Definitely want to keep working with Sage, also wouldn’t mind doing some more electronic features with some other talented producers. This is a hard question for me because I feel like collaborations just kind of happen with friends and/or artists you are close with. I never really force it or think about it, it just happens.

Finally, what’s next?
Devault: Next is my second vocal EP, it’s nearly done and looking to get it out at the beginning of next year. Very excited about it.
BabyJake: An album. Finally.
Their double-sided single ‘Tell Me’ and ‘Blue’ will be released tonight at midnight!!! You can download on all digital platforms and follow them on Instagram,@itsbabjake and @devaultmusic.

Photo of Devault and BabyJake by earthquakemgmt

M.O.D.O.K. HEAD GAMES

Showrunners for the upcoming Hulu series about the popular Marvel villain M.O.D.O.K. will also spearhead a brand new comic series with the character as the lead.

M.O.D.O.K. HEAD GAMES comes from Patton Oswalt and Jordan Blum, who will showcase the leader of the terroristic organization AIM.

M.O.D.O.K. will be outsmarting the rest of the Marvel universe on his way to victory and domination, but this story is a bit more personal. He is haunted by memories of a family he doesn’t know, putting his power, and his brain, at risk.

You can see everything Oswalt and Blum had to say about the supervillain story in an exclusive interview from Marvel by clicking right here. You can also see brand new, never-before-seen pages of the interior of the books from Scott Hepburn, the artist of the upcoming run.

Oswalt said the writers of the show created such an amazing world for M.O.D.O.K. that they had to go further.

“We had so much creativity to burn that Jordan just said we should fill this in in a four-issue comic series as a background. I always love that, to be able to go even deeper into that world,” Oswalt said.

Blum added that he was excited to write the 616 version, or our world’s version, of M.O.D.O.K. specifically.

“We leapt at the chance to write the M.O.D.O.K. who had been there since Stan Lee and Jack Kirby and put our spin on him and pull from a lot of the other versions of M.O.D.O.K. in the past. The character is very flexible and I think you can do a lot with him,” Blum said.

The premiere issue of the series will hit shelves of comic book shops everywhere Dec. 2, and you can keep an eye out for the series starring the historic villain streaming on Hulu in 2021.

To find a comic book shop near you, you can click right here.

You can also follow Patton Oswalt on Twitter and Instagram, and you can follow Jordan Blum on Twitter.

Tyler Perry’s “Sistas” Season 2

360 MAGAZINE had the chance to sit down with the cast of BET’s hit show “Sistas,” which comes from mastermind Tyler Perry, to discuss the second season of the show.

The second season premiered Oct. 14 with a special two-episode event. You can see the third episode of the season on BET Wednesday, and you can catch up on the first season on BET.

Friendship and relationship drama are center stage in this show about four women in the middle of the Atlanta dating scene. Is Mr. Right out there in 2020?

360: What are you most excited about with your characters in season two?

Novi Brown (Sabrina): The drama. I’m just excited to see how far Tyler’s going to take these ladies, and one of my acting teachers says, “Crisis shows character.” We saw Andi in a crisis right when season one ended. Is she still on the road? What is she doing? What is Danni doing? Is Karen over there with Zac because people are dying around them? It’s getting really crazy. Then we have the whole situation with Calvin and Sabrina. Then there’s Olonzo and Maurice. I just feel like you guys should definitely expect every seed that was planted to start budding and cultivating on its own, but you can’t direct how it’s going to be. This is Tyler’s show. We just show up. That’s all we’re going to do. We just want to entertain you guys.

Crystal Hayslett (Fatima): I’m more excited because you actually get to learn who Fatima is. You get to learn more about her. You get to see a lot of different layers she has. Season one, you don’t really get to see that. All you see is that she’s a “ride-or-die” for Andi. This season she continues to do that, but it’s so much more to Fatima.

Trinity Whiteside (Preston): I’m just excited about Preston’s growth. I think with Preston being a mid-season reveal last season, we didn’t get to get into a lot of background as far as Preston individually. I think in this season you get to see a little bit more of him as an individual.

Kevin Walton (Aaron): I’m excited to see more of Aaron in a different kind of space. Season one was plenty of drama in things that were around him. I feel like he gets associated with that space as if he is that. With the opportunity in season two, you get to know him a little bit more beyond just that drama. I’m excited for people to get to see that and see how they respond. Right now everyone is like, “Red flag, Aaron! Questions! Questions! Red flag!” Soften it up for him, please. I’m excited to see that happen.

Devale Ellis (Zac): I’m excited for the evolution. Zac is not going to be the same person he was in season one. Typically that’s what happens in television. Season one to season two you see an evolution of the characters, but I’m excited for people to see where Zac goes in the season.

Anthony Dalton (Calvin): I’m excited to see the interaction with new characters coming in, especially with my character and some of the other characters on the show and the new dynamics that come with that.

Brian Jordan Jr. (Maurice): I’m most excited that people get to see more of Maurice this season and more into his personal life and not just him as an auxiliary to other people but really a deep delve into his life. I’m so excited about that.

360: How does the show’s balance of comedy and drama reflect real life relationships and real life itself?

Mignon (Danni): Life isn’t all anything. Things come to pass, right? Nothing is permanent, except for what you decide to hold dear, and I think comedy and drama being balanced is only necessary for authentic storytelling.

Crystal Hayslett: I think it hits spot on. In life, there’s a balance to everything, and Tyler, with his writing and the way he wrote everything, is the perfect balance and the perfect depiction of what real life is.

Trinity Whiteside: I think, in life, much like with the show, you take the good with the bad. You get the comedy with the drama, and those are two things that I believe drive the show and what has fans from different walks of life enjoying the show.

Kevin Walton: Funny is money. When people laugh, it kind of holds up that heart space, and we do that in general, and we do that in life. When you have comedy and drama dance like that, it is that space where you know where things hit home, and you can find ways to laugh about it and create more humor. Like Crystal said, TP does that beautifully in that space. I think it mirrors life in that way.

Anthony Dalton: I feel that it’s just the human condition. There’s pain. There’s sorrow. There’s laughter, especially amongst the black community. It resonates with the fans, and that’s why we got a season two, and that’s why our numbers are the way they are.

Brian Jordan Jr.: I feel like there are so many situations on this show that are just crazy, and I have been written in with comedic things that happen right in the middle of them. Personally, I’m a person who deals with sorrow, deals with trauma, with comedy. It’s something I’ve done my entire life. People look for joy in those types of situations, and laughter is the way we heal. Especially black people, I feel, we heal from laughter. Laughter is healing for us. I feel that it would not be an adequate depiction of the black experience if you didn’t have humor, so I think it’s perfect.

Devale Ellis: I would have to agree with Brian. I feel like we laugh sometimes to hide our pain, and Zac, in particular, was not supposed to be a super comedic character, but in order to bring some humanity to who Zac is and what he’s been dealing with, dealing with recidivism and some of the choices he made, I decided to make him a little bit funny because I wanted people to root for Zac. If you look at Zac in season one, it was hard to root for him because he made some really poor decisions, and I felt like if he was funny, it would allow Zac to be likable. He’s a charming guy. Even though he’s a little bit doltish and he makes some poor decisions, he’s not an evil guy, so for me, the comedy brings a humanity to my character.

360: The cast has made a point to say they want viewers to see themselves and people they know in this show. What has the fan reception been like, and what work is still left to do in season two and going forward?

KJ Smith (Andi): I think that, from the feedback I see, they do see themselves. They see themselves in each of our characters. We are multi-faceted, diverse human beings, and we all have different layers. I even see myself in all of us, so I think that what we’re doing is translating what it looks like to be a single, black female in this time and space, and I think people can really relate to that.

Crystal Hayseltt: People love that Fatima rides so hard for Andi, but in season one, they didn’t like the way that Andi treated Fatima. They were like, “She’s going for you. Why are you so mean to her?” Going into this season, you see more of a friendship and a bond built, which is beautiful. The fans are in for a treat for sure.

Trinity Whiteside: With Preston, I think it shows that a man can love a woman for who she is, despite how she feels or the insecurities she may have. There are people out there who love you just the way you are, and they don’t need you to change or be something other than simply who you are.

Kevin Whiteside: I feel like the fan receptivity drives the show in that space and in the relatability of those situations. As crazy as these things can be, it isn’t far-fetched from things that happen on a daily basis and in every day life. That’s where TP draws his inspiration from for these stories. That relatability is one of the successes of the show. It lands for people. When we get to, as people and the character, see, like the Twitter feeds and people’s responses, you’re seeing the things that land and people’s struggles and connectedness. They’re like, “Why would you do that? Don’t do that!” Then people go, “Damn, I’ve done that.” You see that, and I feel like that space is so important for the show because that’s what keeps people engaged. You see the drama, you want it to change, you know where you’ve done that and you’re just hoping someone makes a different decision. I think that’s huge, and I see the way that strikes a chord with our fans and is what makes them so awesome. It’s like they’re right there with you and emotionally engaged and calling us out.

Devale Ellis: I think this room here is a perfect example. We’re three of the six men on the show who represent the black men on the show, and we’re all different versions of black manhood, which I think is so important because now you have different versions of black men being represented on television for the first time. Everybody’s not a criminal. Everyone’s not gay. Everyone’s not toxic a masculine man. Everyone’s not super heterosexual. There are so many different versions of black masculinity, and I think it’s good for TV, and it’s good for us as a culture.

Brian Jordan Jr.: I think that we just continue to live and learn and be open to learning. For anybody who is creating content, anybody who is acting, there are so many different types of people in the world and so many different types of black people. There’s a quote they use on Boomerang that’s also on BET, and they say, “There’s not only one way to be black.” I think that when you continue to explore the different types of black men, different types of black women, different sexualities, different socioeconomic backgrounds and things people feel and breathe and experience, you continue to open your mind to learn, and you can always display them on television and make sure everyone is seen. The growth continues when you continue to learn.

Anthony Dalton: There’s not one way to be anything. I think that this show shows that there’s not one way to be a man. There’s not one way to be a woman. We all deal with certain things, and if we have conversations about them and try to get a dialogue and have an understanding, I feel like we’ll progress.

360: How has Tyler Perry helped get the show off the ground and get it rolling the way it is now?

Novi Brown: Besides the fact that he is Tyler Perry, he became who is is because he built it on his faith. There are so many years that he got so many noes, and I’m sure even until now some people still doubt what he’s capable of. Mignon says it all the time. He’s a maverick. He’s a leader. He’s a pioneer. He’s a person who really just shows us you can do whatever you want to do. That’s what I really, really love about our boss. It’s the best class in the world.

Mignon: We told him he should do a MasterClass. It doesn’t even have to be about filmmaking. It could just be “How to direct the course of your own life.”

Crystal Hayslett: It’s amazing. Working with him is fun. We really get to play. I love when he throws lines at me. He’s like, “Ooh, say this. Say that.” It’s a lot of fun, and there are moments where I’m laughing so hard. Then I’m trying to hold it all together because he’s so funny. At the same time, he’s so supportive. As soon as you finish he’s like, “Yes, you killed it!” He’s so supportive and makes you feel really good about your work.

Trinity Whiteside: People don’t realize how much fun we have in between takes. Tyler Perry isn’t “on-screen funny.” Tyler Perry is funny all the time. Just to have that kind of feeling around you all the time, the looseness, the comfort, it makes it easier for everyone, especially as an actor, to be able to be loose and to be free.

Kevin Walton: There’s this air of dedication in him because you see what he’s amassed and the work that he does, and there’s that space of working with him where you want to contribute to that dedication, work ethic and him pouring his heart in. Then there’s the lightness. He’s just funny, and there’s all these moments that happen outside of shooting where you’ll laugh, and you’ll play with it, then you have to get yourself together an go, “Alright. Let’s get the scene.” He’s personable, so it’s a really dope atmosphere to play with, then it also demands that you bring more, especially at the rate he shoots. It’s a really comprehensive experience when we reflect on it. Working with him is really cool. There’s that demand, discipline and his dedication, then the fun and lightness of it because he likes to crack jokes and mess around, and we get to have that fun, too.

Anthony Dalton: It’s monumental, putting that Tyler Perry stamp on this show. Him doing the Viacom deal and everything gets us into a bigger market, and it allows everyone to see themselves on this show. Tyler Perry is an icon, and to be in same presence as him, and to be a part of a successful show that he’s the head of is monumental, and it just means that the sky is the limit for, not only Tyler Perry, but for us and anybody else who walks through those doors.

Devale Ellis: For me I think it’s, one, being an example. He completely obliterated this idea of the gatekeeper mentality. Tyler Perry bulldozed his way into Hollywood his own way. He didn’t follow anyone’s rules. He didn’t go along with anyone’s ideas of who he should be in order to make it, and now he owns the largest studio in all of Hollywood. He’s one of the most paid and most celebrated producers and directors in all of Hollywood, and people continue to support his projects, so he’s an example. Also, he’s smart enough to understand that he has to change with the times. This show is a different type of Tyler Perry. We saw a lot of his Bible Belt content where he was speaking to the older generations, but now this is more of a millennial or Gen Z type of show. You have younger people getting introduced, which is crazy to me, to Tyler Perry for the first time. When you have teenagers saying, “Oh, I didn’t realize that he also did these types of TV shows,” it shows that you can have longevity if you stay with your people, you continue to research what’s going on and you keep your feet ten toes down to what’s going on in the world. Him being an example and using his following to help us push our numbers means a lot, and I’m proud to be a part of it.

Brian Jordan Jr.: Tyler Perry did something that no one else was able to do. He created a genre of media as a playwright first. People never really call him that, but he’s a playwright first. He created a style of television and film that included and showed a people who had been forgotten in Hollywood. In this time where we are observing the disparities in African-American people, I think that Tyler Perry is revolutionary with the things that he has created to serve the people who had been forgotten since the beginning of time, purposely. I think that is something that should be praised an always observed. Nobody else can do it. Nobody else has done it. He has created, and also cornered, this genre, and it’s something people will always be loyal to because he is the author of it, and that is revolutionary to me.

360: What does it mean when he is actually on set, laughing at the jokes and tying in emotionally with the show?

Mignon: He’s there every day. He directs every episode. It’s him.

KJ Smith: He’s hands-on creatively in all facets. It’s at his studio. He’s the writer, the producer and the director, so he’s on-set with us every moment of every day. If Andi doesn’t have any scenes, I can go back to my trailer. I can go back to my space. He’s there regardless. He’s there most times before people get there and after people leave, so he’s extremely hands-on, and I think his dedication and work ethic is shown in the things that he’s been able to do for so many people and employing so many people. Changing the film industry, changing the city of Atlanta as a whole. He’s an incredible human being. I love Tyler. He’s just great.

To learn more about BET’s “Sistas,” you can click right here.

Tokyo's Revenge Press Image by Kevin Maya Used By 360 Magazine

Tokyo’s Revenge Q&A

By Sabrina Weiss

Under the alias Tokyo’s Revenge, this youthful rapper’s prestige supersedes his TikTok fame. The anonymous musician’s track “GOODMORNINGTOKYO” blew up on TikTok and topped music charts, but his raw talent and earnest personality translate beyond the app. With his new song and music video “GOTHAM” and new album 7VEN, Tokyo continues to maintain his unique style with anime and comic-book inspiration. 

With humility and honesty, Tokyo navigates his quick rise to fame with his friends, who double as his musical team, by his side. The young talent spoke equally as transparently about his previous struggles with homelessness, personal approach to mental health, and favorite flavor of Starbursts (pink). All the while, Tokyo giggled and challenged us to video game battles. Even beyond his musical talent, Tokyo’s personality gravitates listeners and a loyal following.

When did you begin your music career?

Well, I did some free-style rapping in high school a bit, but that was mostly to fit into different friend groups. Then, for awhile after high school, I was homeless and ended up couch hopping at different friends’ houses. At one point I stayed with some friends who were constantly making music but didn’t know how to engineer it. It was from these friends that I got the inspiration to learn how to engineer the music. At first, I just engineered their music. But, I only started posting my stuff on Soundcloud about two months into me learning how to mix music. I’m not sure why it took that amount of time, something just clicked at that point.

Before the COVID-19 pandemic, you were on your As Good as Dead Tour. We saw all the love you give your fans, particularly when you surf the crowd and jump in the mosh pit with your listeners. What was your most memorable moment of the tour? 

Oh man there were a lot of good moments. One of the most memorable times would be when I had to lie to security about whether I was going to get in the crowd. If I were to say yes then they would chase me in there. They go in and grab me as quickly as they can when I tell them I’m going to crowd surf. But, lowkey, I hate when they do that. The crowd is where I get my energy from. So I lied so I could be in there with my fans for longer.

There is a Discord ping in your new song “Gotham.” Do you actually use the chat app?

Well, it’s funny you ask that because I have my Discord open right now. I am constantly in my Discord with thousands and thousands of my supporters. I’ll hop in there and play video games with everyone and chat with all of you. I was actually just in one right before this interview and my buddy knocked on my door and said, “Hey man, you’ve got that interview right now, hop off real quick.”

After you blew up on TikTok, we are all wondering what you will do next. How do you plan on maintaining long-term relevance?

By doing whatever I feel like. I learned early on that I am not striving to have fans and followers based on trends. I want fans, followers, and family who support me through any medium I choose because I feel like I am connected to them more than just musically. Whether it be through YouTube videos or making music, I just want to continue to be connected to my fans. My fans are one of my major support systems.

What made you decide to be anonymous?

The idea of no one really knowing about me and trying to figure me and my personality out through clues in my music, rather than social media, is really appealing to me. I am not super attached to social media because if you try to over present yourself through social media, then people won’t be into your art. I want my music to get my face out, not my social media. Some artists are more focused on being social media influencers rather than their art and I’m just the opposite. I don’t talk much about me, I just talk through my music and let my listeners figure me out.

Along the topic of the modern musician, what do you think the industry is missing right now?

Actually, I don’t think the music industry is missing anything right now. If anything, I think there is too much of everything. A little while ago, I had an epiphany and thought to myself, “The biggest problem we have right now is that we are overexposed to everything.” And I feel the same way about the music industry. 

Only two years ago, you were couch-hopping at friends’ houses and now you have quickly risen to fame. How have the struggles of homelessness made you successful in your career?

It taught me not to get comfortable, ever. Being homeless gave me this huge hunger to never stop doing something, because back then I wasn’t focused on music immediately. I was focused on finding a place to work and to sleep. But, if I was comfortable just living like that, then I would probably still be doing just that.

I always wanted to do something bigger and better than couch-crashing, bigger and better than finding a shitty apartment to stay in and just making enough money to survive. I wanted to level-up to a point that my friends and I can be comfortable forever, and that’s how I got here.

You’ve spoken honestly about your mental health in the past. What do you do to get your head right?

I wake up and take a super long, burning hot shower. And then I think of everything but music. I don’t try to force myself into the music. I wake up and remind myself that I am a regular person who came from one place to this place with my best friends. 

We all focus on each others’ mental health more than anything else, and the music is tied into that. I try not to think of music as a job, because it wasn’t a job to us prior it was an outlet for all of our feelings. We play Smash Bros, go out and do something, and then if we are in the zone to make music, then we make music. If not, then maybe tomorrow! There’s no pressure.

Sen. Harris HBCU Interview

BET DIGITAL PRESENTS “BLACK AMERICA VOTES: HBCU STUDENTS INTERVIEW SEN. KAMALA HARRIS” PREMIERES ON NATIONAL VOTER REGISTRATION DAY ON TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 22

Sen. Harris Discusses Education, Employment and Social Justice with HBCU Student Leaders from Spelman College, North Carolina A&T University, Hampton University, Tuskegee University and Howard University

Hosted by Emmy-nominated actor, producer, and media personality Terrence J

Watch, post and share the exclusive BET Digital News Special:
https://www.bet.com/video/news/politics/2020/kamala-harris-interview-hbcu-students-2020-election-video.html

On the heels of the first-ever National Black Voter Day launched by BET’s nonpartisan #ReclaimYourVote campaign, BET Digital will stream an exclusive conversation with Senator Kamala Harris, the presumptive Democratic Vice Presidential nominee with students and youth activists from Historically Black Colleges and Universities. Hosted by Emmy-nominated actor, producer, and media personality Terrence J, the virtual dialog “Black America Votes: HBCU Students Interview Sen. Kamala Harris” will feature political discourse between Sen. Harris and a cohort of student leaders including a student body president, editor-in-chief of a student newspaper, and a president of young Democrats; representing the often unheard millennial voice for many first-time voters in the most significant election in a generation. BET will stream the entire conversation on National Voter Registration Day, Tuesday, September 22, across BET’s digital platforms: BET.com, BET’s Facebook pages including BET, BET News and BET Her. Clips from the special will also be shared to BET’s Twitter accounts.

The news special will address issues that are front and center on these students’ respective campuses. The panelists will consists of various HBCU students across critical states that are vital to the November election, including Sen. Harris’s alma mater Howard University (Washington, DC), Spelman College (Atlanta, GA), North Carolina A&T University (Greensboro, NC), Hampton University (Hampton, Virginia), and Tuskegee University (Tuskegee, Alabama).

For more information, go to www.bet.com and join the conversation on social media by logging on to BET social media platforms and using the hashtags: #ReclaimYourVote #BETVote and by following us @BET, @BETVote, and @BETNews.

ABOUT BET

BET, a subsidiary of ViacomCBS Inc. (NASDAQ: VIACA, VIAC), is the nation’s leading provider of quality entertainment, music, news, and public affairs television programming for the African American audience. The primary BET channel is in 90 million households and can be seen in the United States, Canada, the Caribbean, the United Kingdom, sub-Saharan Africa, and France. BET is the dominant African-American consumer brand with a diverse group of business extensions including BET.com, a leading Internet destination for Black entertainment, music, culture, and news; BET HER, a 24-hour entertainment network targeting the African-American Woman; BET Music Networks – BET Jams, BET Soul and BET Gospel; BET Home Entertainment; BET Live, BET’s growing festival business; BET Mobile, which provides ringtones, games and video content for wireless devices; and BET International, which operates BET around the globe.

Katie Gallagher SS 2021

Used for centuries, the caustic mineral orpiment was a common garment dye and artist pigment, but as time moved on, its use proved too deadly. Orpiment’s rich yellow hue, similar to gold, still adorns ancient tombs and sacred spaces. The color qualities and duality of this lethal mineral serve as the inspiration for Katie Gallagher’s Spring/Summer 2021 collection, Orpiment.

Katie Gallagher is an American fashion designer and the founder of her namesake brand in New York City. She established the bran after studying at the Rhode Island School of Design and interning under big names in fashion such as Anna Sui. Looks by Katie Gallagher have been pulled by Lady Gaga’s stylish Nicola Formichetti, amongst others. Her designs have received attention from Vogue Italia, Elle, Interview, Refinery 29, and various New York based magazines. At ag 34, the designer is at only the very beginning of her career.

In describing her creative process and thoughts on design, Gallagher has said “I don’t believe that fashion is the end goal; stories, personalities, moods, ideals, and attitudes are. Fashion, when executed successfully, communicates these attributes quickly and eloquently.”

In this latest collection, Gallagher focuses on her color of choice for fall, yellow. Yellow, the color of caution, but also hope, is a fitting choice for the collective current mood during this global pandemic. Together, apart, we move forward cautiously and hyperaware. Orpiment features bold yellow garments, including a sheer Tulle dress and a lightweight Nylon Ripstop bomber jacket juxtaposing Gallagher’s signature black and white color palette.

Find more from Katie Gallagher on her website here.

Rosie O’Donnell × Michael Cohen

By Althea Champion

Michael Cohen, former attorney for President Donald Trump, released the first episode of his podcast, “Mea Culpa,” yesterday. The episode features Rosie O’Donnell, who discusses the attacks from Donald Trump she braved over the years, and why she reached out to Cohen when he was imprisoned.

The release of this podcast comes in the latter half of a three-year sentence, which he was granted medical furlough from on May 20, citing, “medical conditions that might be worsened by the virus’s spread in prison,” according to Maggie Haberman, William K. Rashbaum and Nicole Hong of the New York Times.

More than two years after Cohen took a plea deal in 2018, admitting guilt to eight counts of financial crimes in federal court, “Mea Culpa” recounts his experience working for Trump.

The prospect of parole had been complicated by what was the prospective publication of Cohen’s tell-all memoir.

According to Benjamin Weiser and Alan Feuer of the New York Times, Cohen was asked to sign a document that would have allowed him to stay at home, but would have concurrently disallowed him to finish and publish his book. When he refused to sign it, he was sent back to prison.

More recently, Weiser and Feuer reported that, “a federal judge ruled that the decision to return Mr. Cohen to custody amounted to retaliation by the government and ordered him to be released again into home confinement.”

It is now that he is back home to serve the rest of his prison sentence that this episode is released not more than a week after his book, “Disloyal: A Memoir” hit markets.

“Trumpism is a disease of the mind, every bit as virulent as COVID, only the host is a willing participant, in his or her own demise,” said Cohen in the episode’s introduction. “Trumpism insidiously preys upon the psychological makeup of the individual, probing the moral compass for weakness, and I was its patient zero… So this podcast will serve as my penance.”

Stream the episode here:

APPLE | SPOTIFY | STITCHER

 Find previews here:

Cohen and O’Donnell discuss Jonestown

Cohen and O’Donnell discuss Cohen’s relationship with Trump 

Naomi Campbell Interviews Cynthia Ervio

Naomi Campbell returns with an exclusive episode of her popular YouTube series featuring special guest Cynthia Ervio.

International supermodel, activist and philanthropist Naomi Campbell welcomes Emmy, Grammy and Tony Award-Winning Actor, singer and songwriter Cynthia Erivo to “No Filter with Naomi” – a limited-time series beneath her highly popular “Being Naomi” YouTube channel. The intimate, live streamed series has invited fans to #stayhome and save lives during this critical time and has focused on in-depth, career spanning conversations between Naomi and a close group of her friends including: designers, musicians, actors, beauty gurus and media personalities.

The series debuted on April 6th and has since featured guests Cindy Crawford, Marc Jacobs, Nicole Richie, Ashley Graham, Pierpaolo PiccoliLee Daniels, Christy Turlington, Adut Akech, Sharon Stone, Paris Hilton, Serena Williams and Venus Williams, Karlie Kloss, Anna WintourSean “Diddy” Combs and Jackie Aina. 

The “No Filter with Naomi” series returned after hiatus on June 23rd and featured a select group of episodes focused on impactful conversations dedicated to #BlackLivesMatter, social justice issues, racial and human inequalities. These critical conversations, reflective of our times, included featured guests: Opal Tometi, Rev. Al Sharpton, Alphonso Reed, Cleo Wade, Bethann Hardison, Tyler Mitchell, Indya Moore, Chase Strangio, and Tori Cooper.

Streaming live on Naomi Campbell’s YouTube Channel. View all “No Filter with Naomi” episodes here. 

Gabrielle Marchan illustrates Dianne Morales for 360 MAGAZINE

Dianne Morales

As of late, one of our team members had the opportunity to sit down with New York City mayoral candidate Dianne Morales for an interview. After eight years under Mayor Bill de Blasio, New York City will see someone new in the position in 2021, and Morales, a member of the Democratic Party, is jumping at the opportunity.

360: What are the major points of inspiration throughout your life, so far, that have led you to where you are today?

Morales: At my core is a commitment to community, and I learned community at home. I am the youngest of three girls and the daughter of Puerto Rican parents. My mother, a secretary for the Leather Workers’ Union, and my father, a building manager on the waterfront, created a working-class life for us in Bed-Stuy. But our home was not just for me and my sisters. My grandmother, Mami, lived with us my whole childhood. In fact, she and I shared a bed until the day that I left home for college. Our home was a resting place, a layover, a transition point for whoever needed it. There was always someone new sleeping on the couch or joining us at the dinner table. Whether they had just arrived from Puerto Rico, were in between jobs, had just returned from the military or from being incarcerated, there were always other people staying with us while they “got back on their feet.” My parents opened their arms and their front door to whoever needed it. I never questioned this way of life. I was taught, “If you have, then you provide.” We took care of each other. I saw, firsthand, the opportunity created when we each take responsibility, not just for ourselves, but for our neighbors and for our communities. This belief has spurred me on through 30 years in the public sector, as an educator, a foster care worker and a leader of nonprofits.

As I established my own home in Bed-Stuy as a single mom, my children and I recreated the dynamic my parents had built. We always have a few extra people living in our home – whom we often refer to as our “chosen family.” These extended family members have filled my home with love and reciprocal support. In a twist of fate, since the pandemic hit, I have shared my home with my parents and my children. I envision a New York City where we take care of each other, where everyone is welcome to the dinner table, where neighbors provide more support than extra sugar and all of us have a warm place to rest our heads. Although NYC is vast with diversity, we are all inextricably bound together and are only as strong as our most vulnerable link.

360: How can a mayor, as opposed to any other civic official, lead unique positive changes for equity?

Morales: Over the past several months there is a mantra I have been repeating consistently: a budget is a reflection of our values. The mayor has executive power over what gets funded in the city and by how much. Funding for services that contribute to true public safety (access to housing, medical/mental healthcare, economic stability, job training, education) will provide access and opportunity to those who have historically been left behind by our elected officials. Line by line, the budget reveals the values of a city and government. The NYC budget passed in June was a failure. It failed the residents of NYC, who have been raising their voices in protest and demanding a divestment from law enforcement since May 29. It failed those whose lives have been lost at the hands of the NYPD. It failed communities of color that have been disproportionately impacted by violence and brutality.

The budget highlights the need for NYC leadership to put New Yorkers first by investing in communities. The NYC Mayor also has the ability to work to desegregate public schools and impact the quality of education provided to over 1.1 million students, many of whom are students of color living in poverty. This alters the course of a student’s life and provides an entry point to economic mobility and a true career trajectory. New Yorkers deserve a bold, transformational leader who is unapologetically committed to prioritizing justice in the budget’s bottom line. I fundamentally believe that those closest to the problem are closest to the solution. Our city needs a mayor that is in tune with her people and provides a vision for and direction for what is possible.

360: What are some of the most pressing or urgent issues that need attention within New York City, and how would you address them?

Morales: New York’s problems all stem from structural oppression by Race, Gender and Class, so our solutions must go deeper, all the way to the root causes. Too many New Yorkers are living in a time of scarcity, and that’s been going on since long before the virus hit. The are working two jobs, just barely surviving and always one misfortune away from losing everything. Instead of this “Scarcity Economy,” we need a “Solidarity Economy,” and that requires bold action. First, transforming public safety in the city by providing access to the same critical resources found in wealthy communities will be a critical step toward creating the long-term change we need for all to live in dignity. True public safety includes ensuring that every New Yorker has access to “life essentials,” like quality transportation, affordable housing, excellent and equal education and human-centered healthcare. All New Yorkers deserve access to these fundamental resources in order to live in dignity, and it is the necessary floor needed to break through glass ceilings.

Next, we must enhance and overhaul vital infrastructure requiring multi-part, creative solutions that address the deeper issues embedded in the fabric of NYC. To break the racist cycle of poverty that divides our city into the “haves” and the “have-nots,” we will establish a guaranteed minimum income. We will push for universal healthcare and eliminate inequities in the health system faced by women, and especially women of color. We will work to address the persistent segregation of our schools and disrupt the school-to-prison pipeline by replacing school safety officers with trained mental health professionals. The driving force behind all policy initiatives is the experiences, needs and voices of women of color. Particularly, Black women. As the Combahee River Collective wisely wrote in its 1977 statement, “If Black women were free, it would mean that everyone else would have to be free since our freedom would necessitate the destruction of all the systems of oppression.” We know that if New York does right by Black women, the entire city will be better for it.

360: How can you use your personal experiences with serving as a single mother and observing the many other challenges that face New York City residents to enact policy reform?

Morales: So many of New York’s problems have impacted me directly, and so much of who I am and what I know comes from being a mom. My greatest joy is being the mother of my two children, Ben and Gabby. They constantly push me, teach me and nourish me. As a single parent, I share experiences with hundreds of thousands of other New Yorkers. A 2018 study found that single-parent households are the second largest household type in New York City. I navigated New York City’s systems – economic, health and education – on my own. I balanced a budget for my family each month, figuring out how to make it work. My greatest challenge was parenting my children through the NYC education system. The rigid and unforgiving education that my children received did not allow any space for their learning differences. They did not see themselves in the white-centric curriculum and we struggled to find support during their developmental years. Advocating for my children was a full-time job on top of my paying-full-time-job. Again and again I have stood with parents for a more equitable and life-affirming education for our kids. It is with this same community spirit of coalition building, advocacy and bettering of our social safety nets that I will push for policies that support all types of families in NYC.

360: What is one of the most significant components of your background or experiential knowledge that separates you from any other candidate?

Morales: I am, in so many ways, the average New Yorker. I was born and bred in Bed-Stuy. I am an Afro Latina single-mom of two children who survived the New York City public school system. I am a first generation college graduate who came back home to my city after school. I am a woman of color who discovered that I was not being paid the same as my white male counterparts. I’ve watched my neighborhood change, I’ve seen Starbucks replace the corner bodega, and I have spent my weekends marching side by side – 6 feet apart – with my fellow New Yorkers demanding justice for those killed at the hands of a racist policing system. Because I am the average New Yorker, my voice reflects the voices of thousands of others. We share our lived experiences, frustrations and joys. I love New York City because I see our full potential for all of us.

360: How does your previous extensive work with social service nonprofits inform your motivations and goals to serve as Mayor?

Morales: For decades, I worked within the community to address structural inequities burdening communities of color. I worked alongside those experiencing the symptoms of our broken system most acutely – poverty, lack of access to education, homelessness and mental health services. I witnessed firsthand the day-to-day struggles of New Yorkers that are perpetuated by cycles of poverty and oppression. I worked from the ground, up and from the inside, out. But as I hammered away, I recognized these structural and institutional barriers, and began to ask, “So how do we burn them down?” It felt as though I was only tinkering around the edges of the problem and providing Band-Aid solutions to deep, deep wounds. The core, perpetuating issues were centralized and foundational. I realized that if I want to create lasting, effective change, I must address these systemic and political problems at the root. As Mayor, I would carry with me the voices of those I have served.

360: In outlining your points of action and reform for New York City, how does the COVID-19 pandemic affect any of these potential strides for change?

Morales: As we know, COVID-19 is a catastrophe that illuminates all of the cracks and splinters in our broken systems. At first, many claimed the COVID-19 was a “great equalizer,” affecting all people, regardless of race, class or gender. Instead COVID-19 disproportionately impacts people of color and low-income communities. This is not a coincidence or personal failing, but rather the direct result of racist systems, putting structural oppression in stark relief. While some New Yorkers are able to escape crowded areas, arm themselves with personal protective equipment and work remotely, others, namely people of color, are on the front lines providing essential services to our city.

As COVID-19 has had devastating consequences that will leave a lasting impact for years to come, it has also provided us with a unique moment. As we saw after the murder of George Floyd by the Minneapolis police, being homebound and isolated forces us to pay attention. We have paused. We have slowed down. With fewer distractions and a center of focus, folks all across the country have had the veil lifted. People are noticing the interconnected webs of oppression I have lived with and that I have been fighting to dismantle my entire life. In this moment, we need leaders in office who are of, by and for the movement for social change. There is a momentum and hunger for justice that can no longer be ignored. As we overcome the challenge of the disease, I will never let the city forget who is truly essential. Together we will create a world in which front-line workers are truly valued as indispensable. A world where we accompany our applause and platitudes with a livable wage, unquestionable dignity and real community power.

360: What are some of the most rewarding takeaways you have gained from leading several momentous organizations?

Morales: I’ve learned firsthand about the barriers and challenges that people have to overcome in order to gain access to opportunities that are alleged to be available to everyone. I also have watched as community members care for one another to bridge the gaps in access to those opportunities. This is testament to the power of our communities to be true partners in determining the solutions they face when given the resources to do so. Finally, I have been able to bear witness to what is possible when people finally gain access and opportunity and how that has the potential to change the trajectory of people’s lives and transform families and communities.

360: Regarding the national and global movement, Black Lives Matter, how will you utilize your unique identity to empower minorities in the City of New York?

Morales: Like many people of color, I have lived years of my life trying not to take up space. I have seen the ways that my identities – my Blackness, my Latina roots, my politics, my womanhood – make people, namely white people, uncomfortable. In these spaces I would constantly ask myself, “Do I seem too opinionated, too articulate, too aggressive?” I would contort and deflate myself to fit into tight corners and small boxes. I would shrink myself so that others could feel big. When making the decision to run for Mayor of NYC, I decided it was important for me to run as my full, unadulterated, unapologetic, multi-hyphenated self. There would be no more shrinking, questioning or self-doubt. I recognize that by the very nature of stepping into this space, I am opening up a path of possibility. As the first Afro-Latina running for mayor of New York City, I recognize the awesome responsibility I hold. I know that when I speak, unfairly or not, I am representing all Afro-Latina women. Missteps become mass stereotypes. Accolades become communal achievements.

This is both beautiful and deeply terrifying. But in moments of fear, I am guided by a greater purpose to bring with me those whom have been devalued and made to feel small, as I have been; to elevate the voices of those with shared experiences and claim our rightful place in democracy and representation in leadership. People like me, individuals and communities of color, women of color, we must be at the forefront of our politics and policies. I am deeply committed to divesting from racist systems and investing in Black and Brown communities. I am committed to reimagining public safety on our streets and in our schools. I am committed to shifting wealth opportunities to those who have been historically marginalized. I am committed to redressing and repairing the wounds of oppression that scar our city. I am in this race to stand taller in the face of a world that tells me to shrink. I am here to tell them that Black lives are beloved. We matter today and every day forward.

360: To all of the NYC citizens following your efforts to better numerous communities, what are some of the best ways individuals can support your campaign?

Morales: The best way to help me is to join the campaign with a small contribution. I am not a career politician, and unlike other candidates, I have not spent decades cultivating a war chest of people, networks and resources to kickstart my run for mayor. I want to be responsive to the people, not the special interests.. My campaign was born out of my home in Bed-Stuy, out of conversations with my neighbors, friends and colleagues. Our campaign is 100% powered by the people, not the 1%. We are an intersectional coalition of Black and Brown, Latinx, LGBTQIA and working class New Yorkers. We are backed by the people being hit the hardest at this moment in time. I am so incredibly humbled that in the middle of a pandemic, without employment, people are finding a way to donate to our campaign. I know what is at stake and the choices they have had to make to do so. If donating to our campaign is not possible for you during this financially uncertain time, we understand. Visit my website, dianne.nyc, for information and volunteer opportunities. Spread our mission to your fellow New Yorkers. Reach out to join our team. Remember me in November 2021.

To learn more about Dianne Morales, you can click right here. To learn more about her stances and solutions, you can click right here. To support Morales through donations, you can click right here. You can also support her on Twitter and Instagram.