Posts tagged with "Puerto Rico"

Jamaine Ortiz Illustration for 360 Magazine by Kaelen Felix

Q×A with Jamaine Ortiz

Jamaine “The Technician” Ortiz, an up and coming, 23-year-old boxer, is making his name in the world of boxing. After growing up in Worcester, Massachusetts, the young boxer turned pro in 2016. His amateur record is 100-14 and he has already won many awards for his skill.

During the recent Mike Tyson vs. Roy Jones Jr. fight that was shown on pay-per-view, Ortiz was victorious over Sulaiman Segawa of Silver Spring, Maryland. After scoring a technical knockout in the last 10 seconds of the seventh round, Ortiz gained the WBC USNBC Silver lightweight title. This was his first fight outside of New England and he certainly made himself known in the fighting community. After winning this fight, Ortiz jumped from 76th to 44th in the world for the lightweight division. If he keeps winning, Ortiz is predicted to fight for a major world title by late 2021.

360 Magazine sat down with Ortiz to ask him questions about his professional career, personal life and future.

What was your upbringing like? Was there always a focus on athletics?

I started boxing at seven years old, and I was always an athletic kid, playing sports and outside.

Where did you learn to box?

I learned how to box at the Boys & Girls Club of Ionic Ave.

Why boxing?

I use to get into fights as a kid, I like that its a one on one sport I don’t have to rely on anyone. Over time, I noticed I was winning a lot and kept it going.

Who are your role models, boxing or otherwise?

My role model was my coach Carlos Garcia.

You’re currently the Undefeated World Boxing Youth World lightweight champion. What does this accomplishment mean to you?

I’m actually the former Youth World lightweight champion due to my age since I turned 24 last April, currently, I hold the WBC USNBC Silver lightweight title. The accomplishment is just a stepping stone, I have far more to go and I understand its a process and this is part of the process.

Your nickname is ‘The Technician’ where does this come from?

A technician is a person skilled in an art or craft by dictionary standards and when it comes to boxing, and me being a carpenter, I’m now an active trader. It was a perfect fit since everything I do, including things in my personal life, I’m technical about it. So it’s a name that reflects more than just boxing.

You’ve been boxing competitively for more than a decade. How have you evolved during that time, technique-wise and also personally?

Time is the mother of greatness, practicing repeatedly overtime is only natural; I’m going to get better.

How has your career been impacted by COVID-19 and 2020?

Luckily I was able to get a fight right before the impact of covid came I didn’t get to fight as much as I normally would. I probably would have had about 4 fights in a year but I had two with the last one being a great exposure bout.

Tell us about your interests outside of boxing.

I enjoy nature and I spend most of my time with family. Always working on self-development, a lot of stocks, and trying to find real estate deals.

Do you still have Olympic aspirations? What are your future boxing goals?

Olympics of boxing is an amateur sport but recently I think in 2016, they allowed pros to compete but it is heavily dominated by amateurs. In the next year, I see myself becoming World Champion at the lightweight Division and reaching for that pound for pound list.

What is your go-to move in a fight?

Not sure, probably switching from orthodox to southpaw.

What makes you unique as a boxer?

My ability to switch stances easily and my technique.

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Cleancult – redefining clean

By Armon Hayes

Truth be told, the cleaning industry has a dirty little secret—it’s not so clean after all. In order to fix tomorrow’s problems, we must fix today’s cleaning model. Many green cleaners don’t actually clean, and conventional ones often contain unhealthy chemicals. That’s where Cleancult comes in. 

Based in Puerto Rico, Cleancult is an eco-friendly brand that understands its duty to the Earth and its unique environments. Cleancult has products you will absolutely love and can feel good about incorporating into your routine, all the while minimizing your carbon footprint. From liquid hand soap, to laundry detergent, to dish soap made of effective cleaning power charged by nature’s finest ingredients, Cleancult keeps things clean, sustainable, non-toxic, and GMO-free. 

If you make the switch to Cleancult, you will eliminate 44 pounds of plastic waste each year.

Redefining powerful ingredients led to their signature, coconut-powered CocoClean Technology. Citric acid instantly lifts stains and tough odors without leaving behind toxins on your clothes. The plant-based formula of their hand soaps harness the power of coconuts and other biodegradable elements for a clean that’s uniquely tough on grit and grime, but gentle on your skin and our earth. The Lavender essence liquid hand soap is a gamechanger, now that frequent, vigorous, 20-second hand washing is necessary. An essential blend of aloe vera gel, olive oil, and coconut oil cleans and moisturizes your hands, leaving them feeling renewed. No worries, the same holds true for the Grapefruit Basil dish soap

The Home Bundle is the perfect package to get started, especially in a mosaic motif. It includes vibrant-colored, easy dispensers that will dress up your kitchen sink and compliment any bathroom decor. Their reusable glass bottles are shatter-resistant, rubberized but stylish, and guaranteed to be with you for the long haul. 

Cleancult has revolutionized every aspect of the cleaning process, from its ingredients to its packaging, to its performance to its shipping. Other cleaning products, even eco-friendly ones, use a lot of plastic that clogs up our homes, landfills, and oceans. An innovative refill system makes it easy for you to clean sustainably with 100% recyclable packaging made in the USA and carbon-neutral shipments. If you join the free recycle back program, Cleancult will take care of it for you, refilling your bottles and recycling your cartons. 

Everything about them comes back to one idea, redefining clean. Recyclable, paper-based milk carton refills means you can be eco-friendly in between cleans. Formulas with a little elbow grease that actually do the dirty work in your home without creating any more waste for the planet. Ready for a new cleaning routine? You can tailor every membership to your unique needs by choosing what you want, offering flexibility on shipments, and even pitching in on your recycling. 

Curate your very own clean routine with the products you need, delivered on a schedule that works with your lifestyle, because a brighter tomorrow starts with a smarter today.

Lunay illustrated by Maria Soloman for 360 MAGAZINE

Lunay

Breakout Artist Lunay Showcases How Latinx Music Has Lent New Vision to Fashion

‘As artists like Lunay, Bad Bunny, Rosalia, J Balvin and more continue to dominate music, here’s a look at how they’re tapping into their culture to influence their fashion.’

Read article HERE.

LUNAY is also scheduled to take part in the virtual “On The Rise Panel” during Billboard’s upcoming Latin Music Week.

“Lunay is Urbano’s Next Superstar! …when a new artist does manage to cut through the fray, we really should pay attention, [and LUNAY is] one of the freshest upcoming stars in the game. Every single he’s released thus far has been a hit… the 19-year-old from Puerto Rico is on a rapid ascent… and Épico [was] a 14-track wonder of reggaeton, dancehall and trap influences that mark a young artist who is already well on his way to mainstay status – Remezcla

“A Billboard Latin Artist On The Rise… Discovered by Latin producers Chris Jeday and Gaby Music, Lunay… Lunay has had entries on the Billboard Hot 100, Hot Latin Songs and Latin Airplay charts, [and] became a household name with his 2019 hit ‘Soltera’ and its remix featuring Daddy Yankee and Bad Bunny.” – Billboard

“Watch out, because he’s on his way. Lunay has all eyes on him… The Puerto Rican regggaeton artist is following in the footsteps of those who came before him – and getting their seal of approval.” – HOLA

ABOUT LUNAY

While a large number of new Latin music artists are looking to continue the surge in global success of Reggaeton, Latin Trap and other Rhythmic music styles in Spanish, it has become clearly evident that Puerto Rico’s dynamic, still only 19, musical“wunderkind” (RS), LUNAY is the genre’s undisputed new generation superstar. After bursting into the playlists and video streams of fans across the world with “Soltera” and it’s soon to follow, and widely regarded ‘Song of Summer’ remix with Daddy Yankee and Bad Bunny, LUNAY’s credits were quickly boasting two #1 Latin Airplay singles, a rare #1 full album debut with the 14-track ‘ÉPICO,’ and over a Billion views quickly collected on YouTube. With the support of super-producers Chris Jedi, Gaby Music, and their Star Island label, Lunay’s rapid rise has already resulted in a trophy case full of breakthrough artist award recognition including: the 2019 LATIN AMA’S “NEW ARTIST OF THE YEAR, 2019 BILLBOARD “ARTIST ON THE RISE” recognition, SPOTIFY TOP 3 “BREAKOUT ARTISTS OF YEAR, 2019 APPLE MUSIC “UP NEXT ARTIST” and FOUR PREMIOS JUVENTUD victories: “ON THE RISE ARTIST” & ”REMIX OF THE YEAR” (2019) and most recently “BREAKING THE INTERNET” & NEW GENERATION – MALE (2020). Following a few quiet months due to the Covid pandemic postponing a series of highly-anticipated concert appearances, LUNAY is once again resuming his ascent to the upper reaches of the genre with recent features alongside Lil Mosey and Jhay Cortez, and his recent standout single “Relaciones” – which Rolling Stone hailed as the week’s best new Latin music track upon its release.

Connect With LUNAY: INSTAGRAM / TWITTER / FACEBOOK / TIKTOK

Six-Time World Champ Comes out of Retirement

A former six-time World Boxing champion from Miami is making a highly anticipated comeback to the sport at the ripe age of 40 years old, as part of a mission to reclaim the title once hers and raise the caliber of women’s professional boxing.

Puerto Rico-born Melissa Hernandez has been living in Miami for the last nine years, building a name for herself as one of the region’s most reputable boxing instructors—teaching a hardened class of fitness enthusiasts at the Continuum on South Beach Sporting Club for the last three years. As someone who is self-confessed as Married to Boxing, Hernandez now yearns for gold again, since retiring from the sport in 2016 and while keeping a watchful eye on the women rising up the ranks with utmost contempt for whom she considers as not that great.”

Last year, Melissa re-laced her gloves and returned to her New York gym to resume training at Gleason’s in Brooklyn, where she sparred at the height of her career. While considering Miami her home, she regularly travels to New York to train with her eye on the prize, after recently becoming the number one contender for the World WBC Welterweight Title, currently held by American fighter, Jessica McCaskill. With her new Las Vegas-based manager and promotor in New York behind her, Melissa is determined to de-throne the reigning champion when boxing resumes in the wake of COVID-19.

I decided to retire in 2016 after winning all the titles in my weight class because the purse that came with the glory was ridiculously low says Melissa when asked why she threw in the towel. “I decided to return to the sport because I’ve seen how competitively weak the field has now become and I want to change that. I love working with my classes at the Continuum Sporting Club in Miami Beach and I’ve seen the passion and hard-working talent that comes from Miami as a city with a strong boxing history. I like pushing the envelope and my body and mind feels just as able as I was ten years ago.”

Melissa moved from Puerto Rico to the Bronx in New York with her family in 1984. Melissa’s mother was as scientist and father a psychologist and she attended the Bronx Community College, but dropped out to pursue her love for the arts and a career in film, video and photography after an internship at the Whitney Museum at the age of 15 years old. Melissa wanted to be an editor in film but ended up in the fashion business working for the likes of Patagonia and The GAP in New York City for four years until she was 22 years old.

Melissa admired fellow Puerto Rican boxer, Héctor Camacho, and began hanging-out with friends at a local boxing gym in the Bronx. In 2002 at 22 years old, Melissa started sparring with a trainer who saw tremendous potential and encouraged her to train for participation in the prestigious New York Golden Gloves boxing tournament at Madison Square Garden where she lost in the final. Melissa grew to enjoy her time in the ring and realized she was made for boxing.

After fighting at the USA Boxing Nationals as an amateur, Melissa became certified by USA Boxing in 2003 to train amateur boxers, but was determined to continue with her own career in Florida where she was scouted by a number of trainers. Melissa continued to hone her boxing skills for a year before moving back to New York City, where she continued her training in the Bronx at The Webster Police Athletic League Center. Melissa won the New York Golden Gloves tournament over two consecutive years in 2004 and 2005 and turned pro in the winter of 2005 under the mentorship of trainer Belinda Laracuente. Melissa began training as a professional at the renowned Gleason’s Gym in Brooklyn and fought her first WBA Junior Welterweight World Title fight against Kelsey Jeffries in 2006. In the same year, Melissa claimed her first title and became the WIBA Super Bantamweight World Champion after beating Lisa Brown in Edmonton, Canada. By 2008, Melissa became the top ranked pound-for-pound fighter in the world and would travel the globe defending her titles and claiming many more along the way, before moving to Florida in 2011 where she would train at the world famous 5th Street Gym in Miami Beach.

After winning six World Boxing titles over a ten-year period, Melissa decided to hang up her gloves in 2016, citing how female boxers were financially being treated unfairly. Over the next several years, Melissa would concentrate on being a successful boxing instructor, teaching at local gyms throughout Miami and building her individual client base for one-on-one instruction. Melissa’s elite talent as a boxing instructor was spotted by a fellow trainer who introduced her to the Continuum Sporting Club in Miami Beach, where Melissa would become immensely popular among the residents and homeowners at the luxury beachfront community.

Last year, Melissa resumed her training at Gleason’s Gym in New York City in her quest to reclaim the WBC Welterweight title that she hopes will be planned for later this year, after winning her first comeback fight in Louisiana in 2019. Known as Melissa “HuracanShark” Hernandez, her previous titles include: WIBA Super Bantamweight, GBU Lightweight World Title, WIBA Lightweight World Title, WIBA Super Featherweight World Title, WBA Intercontinental Featherweight Title, WIBA Interim Lightweight Title, IBS Light Welterweight World Title, WBC Featherweight World Title and UBF Super Lightweight World Title.

While age 40 is considered old for women’s boxing, this doesn’t deter Melissa, who wants to continue fighting for another two years until she claims the one or more titles she vows to bring home to Miami. Her long-term plans are to open her own boxing studio while continuing to paint and discover new art galleries in her spare time. Melissa lives in Miami Beach, Florida and is currently single.

Bad Bunny To Receive Hispanic Heritage Award for Vision

The Hispanic Heritage Foundation (HHF) announced today that Puerto Rican music superstar and social activist Bad Bunny will receive the Hispanic Heritage Award for Vision during the October 6th broadcast of the 33rd Annual Hispanic Heritage Awards.

“The Hispanic Heritage Foundation is honored to recognize the transcendent impact of Bad Bunny as an artist and as an activist through the Vision Award,” said Jose Antonio Tijerino, President and CEO of HHF.  “Bad Bunny understands his responsibility to serve as powerful voice for those who need to be heard as well as a source of inspiration for our youth. He radiates his Latinx and Puerto Rican pride in everything he does from the stage to the community to the entire world.”

Bad Bunny is unquestionably one of the most popular current music artists in the world. The multi-platinum Latin Grammy winner and Grammy nominee, constantly manages to shatter language and stereotype barriers, becoming an international entertainment and cultural icon. Recognizing the huge impact he has had in propelling Latin music to it’s largest-ever global audience, Bad Bunny recently became the first-ever Reggaeton & Trap artist to appear on the cover of Rolling Stone Magazine. His role as a genre leader has also led him to headline many of the world’s biggest concert stages during prominent music festivals and international concert tours.

Bad Bunny’s most recent album, Las Que No Iban A Salir debuted #1 on Billboard’s Top Latin Albums” chart – dethroning himself, and managing to simultaneously hold the top-three chart positions, with “YHLQMDLG” at #2 and “X 100PRE” at #3. Upon its earlier release, YHLQMDLG” also saw Bad Bunny become the first Reggaeton artist to debut at #2 on the “Billboard 200”album chart, and he has become one of the Latin artists with the most entries on the overall “Hot 100,” with a total of 24 charting hits. Each of Bad Bunny’s releases has left a forceful mark on the history of Latin music, with his artistic creativity and cultural representation demonstrating his character as one of the most impactful artists of the moment and a constantly growing position in the global music industry.

The Hispanic Heritage Awards were created by Latinos at the White House in 1987 to commemorate the establishment of Hispanic Heritage Month in America and are considered among the highest honors by Latinos for Latinos and are supported by 40 national Hispanic-serving institutions. Past Honorees of the Hispanic Heritage Awards have included Justice Sonia Sotomayor, Rita Moreno, Celia Cruz, Tito Puente, Gloria Estefan, Oscar Hijuelos, Martin Sheen, Ricky Martin, Rubén Blades, Fania All-Stars, Junot Diaz, José Feliciano, Carlos Vives, Oscar de la Hoya, Alejandro Sanz, Juanes, Antonio Banderas, Juan Luis Guerra, Anthony Quinn, J Balvin, Residente, Eugenio Derbez, Zoe Saldana, Juan Marichal, Los Tigres Del Norte, Oscar de la Renta, America Ferrera, Pedro Martinez, Luis Fonsi, Alejandro Fernandez Andy García, Canelo Alvarez, Gael Garcia Bernal, the Latin Grammys, Diego Luna, and many more.

In keeping with current COVID-19 mitigation guidance and with the safety of participants in mind, this year will see the October 6th Hispanic Heritage Awards broadcast on PBS presented in a unique documentary style, with honoree profiles and special performances filmed in more personal and intimate settings. Watch for details on the additional special honorees and performers of the 33rd Hispanic Heritage Awards to be revealed in the coming weeks.

FOLLOW BAD BUNNY: Instagram | Twitter | YouTube

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.

Photo by Kevin Amato for an iann dior article for 360 MAGAZINE

New iann dior Music Video

21-year-old rapper iann dior released a new music video for his song “Prospect” on Tuesday. It can be seen here!

The song features Lil Baby and was featured on Spotify playlists like Rap Caviar, Get Turnt and New Music Friday, all helping to propel it to more than 41 million streams since its May release.

The gorgeously shot video is directed by Omar Jones and inspired by Chinese landscape, architecture and colors to tribute the obvious inspiration to the beat. According to the press release, dior’s plans to tour in Asia were cancelled because of the pandemic, so the music video was his next best choice to show love to his Chinese fans.

“Prospect” is just dior’s latest in a long line of hits in a short period of time. Growing up in Corpus Christi, he quickly learned he was a talented writer and decided to turn that talent into hip-hop music. His first song earned 10,000 streams and caught the attention of Taz Taylor, the founder of Internet Money.

He released “Cutthroat” in 2019 which racked up 13 million streams on SoundCloud. He then inked a deal with 10K Projects, with whom he released his first mixtape titled “nothing’s ever good enough.”

dior gives credit to J. Cole for inspiring him to make music.

“He showed me that I could use songs to tell my own story, just like he uses his songs to tell his story,” dior said.

“Prospect” can be found along with other hits like “Pretty Girls,” “Sick and Tired” and “Paradise” on his new album, “I’m Gone,” which was released in June.

Brytiago ft. Jon Z – Crush Videoclip

These past weeks have been a roller coaster of emotions for Brytiago, since the release of his new album “Organico”, followed by 3 video clips from the same project, the interpreter has been keeping his fans up to date and today its not the exception.

This time, Brytiago joins the always controversial and irreverent Jon Z. This highly anticipated musical collaboration brings a fresh vibe to the urban atmosphere, perfect for the summer season, and its name is “Crush.” The song, with no explicit content, was produced by Cromo X, Lanalizer and Viti, and was recorded in Puerto Rico. 

“Crush” music video is a visual proposal that mixes unrealistic events with real life. Its director, the filmmaker Letour, had a lot of fun turning both singers into movie-store sales associates, but, with a surprising turn of events, under the wing of Business Music record label. 

“Crush” is part of Brytiago´s new studio album “Organico”, which in less than a week after its release already collects hundreds of thousands of views on YouTube. The album consists of 16 original songs and contains musical collaborations with great colleagues from the urban scene, such as: Omy de Oro, Darell, Wisin, Rauw Alejandro, Dalex, Lenny Tavárez, Farruko, Kiko el Crazy, Lunay, Arcángel, Juank, Jhay Cortes, Jon Z and Darkiel.  

Watch the video for “Crush” HERE.

Follow Brytiago: Instagram | Twitter | Facebook | Youtube

Storm illustration done by Mina Tocalini of 360 MAGAZINE.

Hurricane During Pandemic

By Mina Tocalini

Evacuations, power outages, flooding and devastation are expected from the c and rain that wreak havoc on coastal communities during hurricane season. Managing the damages and protecting communities is further challenged by the threat of COVID-19 as the Tropical Storm Isaias’ violent path continues up the East Coast.

Designated a tropical storm near Puerto Rico, Isaias began to travel northwest hitting the Dominican Republic, the Bahamas, Florida and North Carolina, where it was assessed as a Category 1 hurricane. As it persisted up the East Coast the intensity reverted back to a tropical storm. Regardless, Isaias has been accompanied by strong winds between 60mph – 70mph, over 20 reports of tornadoes, rampant flash flooding and over 3 million homes and business without power. In New Jersey and Delaware the wind gust reached speeds of 109mph and 96mph, respectively.

A report from USA Today, warns that recent 2020 hurricane season forecasting reveals 10 more hurricanes will likely follow, leaving Isaias as a practice run for a hurricane during a pandemic. With that in mind, evacuations needed to be addressed cautiously in consideration of social distancing and other COVID-19 preventative measures. The combination of COVID-19 and Isaias has heightened concerns for emergency services which face overwhelming demands. The COVID-19 consequences of Isaias remain undetermined, but a potential spike in infections could be in our future.

Jay Wheeler and Myke Towers illustrated by Mina Tocalini for 360 MAGAZINE.

Jay Wheeler × Myke Towers

A month after the release of the album “Platonicos“, the song “La Curiosidad“, original of the new urban-music sensation Jay Wheeler and Myke Towers, “exploded” on all digital platforms reaching top positions on Spotify and Apple Music charts. The growth and success of Jay Wheeler’s artistic career can be translated into perseverance, effort, innate talent, and the power of his romantic soul. Just a month ago, the Puerto Rican singer presented his second studio album named “Platonicos”, a 12-track album that includes amazing musical collaborations with Casper Magico, Dalex, Miky Woodz, Brytiago, and others.

However, there is one song that has managed to steal millions of hearts and the attention of thousands on all digital platforms. “La Curiosidad”, produced by Hitmen and Los Vegaton and performed by Jay Wheeler and his urban-star colleague Myke Towers, has revolutionized the music industry with more than 30 million reproductions, only in the audio of the song on YouTube. The single managed its own way up to the #48 position on Spotify´s Global Top 50 chart and is already trending on Apple Music. The great and organic success that the song has generated “forced” both artists to record an unforgettable music video. The clip was shot in San Juan, Puerto Rico and was directed by Abez Media. The filmmaker presents a love story and a new and sensational side of these two music stars. 

Follow Jay Wheeler: Facebook | Instagram | YouTube

Follow Myke Towers: Instagram | YouTube