Posts tagged with "red"

Mary Ellen Matthews for use by 360 Magazine

Taylor Swift × Red (Taylor’s Version)

Following the long-awaited release of Red (Taylor’s Version), Taylor Swift has yet again made history in the music industry. The ultimate version of her 2012 classic, Red (Taylor’s Version) has become Taylor’s 10th album to move over one million album equivalents during its release week.

Red (Taylor’s Version) consists of an astounding 30 songs, including nine unreleased tracks – “Better Man (Taylor’s Version) (From The Vault),” “Nothing New (Taylor’s Version) (From The Vault)” [feat. Phoebe Bridgers], “Babe (Taylor’s Version) (From The Vault),” “Message in a Bottle (Taylor’s Version) (From The Vault),” “I Bet You Think About Me (Taylor’s Version) (From The Vault)” [feat. Chris Stapleton], “Forever Winter (Taylor’s Version) (From The Vault),” “Run (Taylor’s Version) (From The Vault)” [feat. Ed Sheeran], “The Very First Night (Taylor’s Version) (From The Vault),” and “All Too Well (Taylor’s Version) (From The Vault)” [10 Minute Version].

Red (Taylor’s Version) debuted at #1 in the U.S. and marked the biggest album sales debut in the U.S. with 39k units, and the highest first week sales of any female artist in 2021. Total consumption reached an astonishing 605k units.

Taylor has become the only artist to successfully debut atop the Billboard 200 and Billboard Hot 100 for a third time, and in less than 16 months. The new version of “All Too Well” celebrates Taylor’s fourth #1 debut on the Billboard Hot 100. “All Too Well” also became the longest song to enter and reach #1 on the Billboard Hot 100.

After going live, Red (Taylor’s Version) surpassed Spotify’s biggest opening day streams of all-time for a female with over 90 million streams, a record earlier held by Taylor herself. Red (Taylor’s Version) is Taylor’s fifth successive album to surpass 50 million Spotify streams in only 24 hours. The album has accomplished the greatest streaming week of 2021 for an album by a female artist, surpassing 300 million streams.

The album has also attained the leading vinyl album sales week since tracking first began in 1991. Red (Taylor’s Version) topped the past record that was also set by Taylor in 2021 with Evermore. With the release of this album, Taylor has also now locked in the record for fastest accumulation of four #1 albums by a solo artist in history.

To celebrate the release of Red (Taylor’s Version), Taylor wrote and directed the short film All Too Well The Short Film, inspired by the 10-minute-plus song of the same name. The 13-minute film stars Sadie Sink, Dylan O’Brien and Taylor Swift.

Taylor continued to launch a full-scale television takeover appearing on an array of shows. Taylor performed on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon (watch HERE), Late Night With Seth Meyers (watch HERE), Good Morning America (watch HERE) and Saturday Night Live (watch HERE) with a performance of the 10 minute version of “All Too Well.”

Festivity revolving the release continued with the release of the official music video for “I Bet You Think About Me (Taylor’s Version) (From The Vault)” [feat. Chris Stapleton]. The filmic release was directed and co-written by Blake Lively and stars actor Miles Teller and Taylor (watch HERE).

image by RED hospitality for use by 360 magazine

RED Hospitality and Leisure

RED Hospitality and Leisure is a leading provider of resort services including destination services, watersports, beach and recreation operations, destination management services and transportation. Their clients include premier brands such as The Ritz-Carlton, Westin, and leading hotel REITS in North America and the Caribbean. Their company motto is “Exceptional Experiences by Exceptional People.” RED specializes in providing critical guest-facing departments with subject matter experts, passionate associates, and dedicated management.

With a vertically integrated model, it allows them to provide an end-to-end, highly curated guest experience, driving increased guest satisfaction and revenue for our hotel partners. We work closely with clients to ensure seamless and transparent integration of brand standards. The RED team is made up of hospitality professionals dedicated to turning revenue negative or neutral departments, such as recreation and concierge, into profitable and engaging areas of our client hotels.

Last week, 360 Magazine got the opportunity to speak with Jason Campbell who is responsible for leading RED’s five markets and its subsidiary businesses. With over twenty years of experience in hospitality – focusing on hotel integration, opening project management, guest service standards, and organizational capabilities – Jason provided a lot of insight and useful information to understand the industry.

What brought you into the hospitality industry?

I couldn’t wait to get my work permit when I turned 14 and my first position was at Chesapeake Bagel Bakery in Northern Virginia. I got a thrill out of managing the ‘rush’ each day and the ability to put a smile on someone’s face by providing them genuine service. I went on to study Hotel Management in high school and after competing in DECA, I was confident I would make my passion for hospitality my profession. I later joined Great American Restaurants and learned the importance of team service, which transformed me into thinking more about ‘we’ and less about ‘me’. There was so much more we accomplished together than as individual contributors, which became a part of my management philosophy thereafter. One afternoon we toured a nearby full-service, Marriott hotel and it opened my eyes to all the positions you could learn in the hotel business – from accounting, management, events, food and beverage, front office, valet, concierge, retail, and spa, it put me on a path to seek out a company which I could grow within to learn as much as I could. I started with Marriott as a pool server in Orlando at The World Center hotel, our biggest property at the time, and worked my way up to a Senior Director at their Corporate office in Bethesda leading various teams of operational subject matter experts.

What would you say helped get you where you are?

I was fortunate to start working early and understanding how organizations function. This allowed me the opportunity to be groomed by incredible mentors early in my career. I had a ‘fire in my belly’ which kept me curious to learn more and push beyond my comfort levels which accelerated my learning. Reading books like ‘Setting the Table’ by Danny Meyer broadened my perspectives on how other companies were building their success and created inspiration for me. Throughout my career, I would raise my hand to take on a new project or move into unknown territory. I found I enjoyed projects which required the ability to work well in ambiguity, innovate ideas and test hypothesis, then refine and document processes and procedures to drive sustainability of those initiatives. These projects then presented themselves more frequently and I’ve been thankful to be able to write my own job description for the past decade of my career, focused on building organizations moving from the startup phases of a company’s lifecycle, into to their adolescence and growth stages.

What are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced/currently facing?

The hospitality industry is one of many industries experiencing a labor shortage right now, further compounded by the return of unprecedented demand it’s going to be a constraint over the upcoming quarters as the workforce resets and restabilizes post-COVID. We’ve turned this challenge into a strength by focusing on the development of our current employees, up and down the organization. Our philosophy is if we can recruit the best and invest in their continuous development, we will be able to build our bench over time and capitalize on the human equity which differentiates us from our competitors. We have been allocating resources to not only respond to the weekly demand and provide quality products and services, but to further enhance the training tools and resources we have available to our team members. Additionally, we provide various coaching programs for our management team, making them more versatile, compassionate, and effective in their roles, as well as consistency driving the company’s culture across five marketplaces. This will continue to translate to us having low turnover than industry averages, and a solid foundation to build momentum behind. We run a fast-paced business with high expectations, and if we can show someone a path to continue to grow their career, the future opportunities are endless.

How would you describe your efficiency of operations?

We lead our business units by empowering our managers and employees to make decisions which they believe are in the best interest of the customer, our clients, and the business. This allows us to be more productive as an organization and gives us the opportunity to admit when we make a mistake, which is really a win-win, in that it encourages continuous improvement in a comfortable, trusting environment. We would rather our teams try and fail, than fail to try. If we do fail, we fail fast, learn what didn’t work, pivot, and try again. We are thankful in that our teams are highly committed and highly motivated individuals, who have embodied this framework, which has allowed us to launch new initiatives such as retail operations on land and at sea, developing and accrediting a new sailing academy, creating marine biology expositions to teach guests about local marine life, and activating community programming events to support the neighborhoods we do business in.

Any exciting collaborations in the future?

This quarter, we will be launching a social media management strategy, including a once in a lifetime position to hire a brand ambassador who will travel and experience our brands around South Florida and the Caribbean, curating the content they create to share our company’s story and the first-hand experiences our customers and employees experience. We recently engaged a Public Relations agency who is helping us identify additional opportunities to participate in and sponsor industry conferences, guest speak on discussion panels, and network with lifestyle companies in similar spaces to support the fast rebound of travel.

We’re fortunate to have incredible partners in the luxury and boutique hotel space today, which really resonates with our customers and our brand. From a guest perspective, our goal is for our teams to be in differentiated from the hotel employees, and because RED employees share similar core values, ethical alignment and exemplary hospitality skills as the hotels and brands we work with, this is another advantage of both parties. We operate as an extension of their executive teams, leading and supporting departments they can depend on, which results in the continued collaboration of group efforts to coordinate and plan special events such as unique Festive Season offerings.

Any advice for those working in the hospitality industry?

More of a thank you. This downturn has had the worst impact to our industry in history. I’m inspired by those who double downed and had faith in the recovery of travel and the tenacity to see through what an accelerated return to business demands is now. There are still challenges which lie ahead and I think those who have invested in themselves and their company’s success over the past year are going to have many opportunities to grow into their next roles. A shared benefit to those who have stayed engaged and been fortunate to remain a part of a company, have adapted to wear many hats and understand the intricacies of other parts of the business, the connectedness and importance of each of those disciplines. The human equity which RED has produced over the past year is one we will continue to cultivate as we build our bench strength, deploying our top performers into more complex markets and higher visibility opportunities, such as the launch of new markets and properties next year.

How did COVID impact RED?

RED, like all travel companies, had to significantly consolidate operations when demand evaporated at the start of Covid. Interestingly, the closure of international borders created a change in domestic traveler’s preferences, and encouraged them to seek homeland destinations, often gravitating to the sun and sea. This summer, we had record demand with travelers from Texas, New York, Florida, and North Carolina being the first to return, most notably to our Sebago offerings in Key West.

The pent-up demand led to travelers staying in destination for longer, and often spending more than years prior, because they had more expendable income after foregoing their annual vacation the year prior. RED offers outdoor experiences, which were in high demand as guests returned, and we continue to see stronger than anticipated demand through September and October which are our typical shoulder slower months. This is encouraging to us, and we predict a busy year lies ahead, especially as inbound international travel returns.

Any plans for expansion?

Indeed. It’s one of our company goals for the next year. We launched our first international market and operations at The Ritz-Carlton in Turks and Caicos in June, which we plan to expand upon very soon. We also expanded to two new hotels in Key West and signed a new contract to launch at two new hotels by the end of 2022.

There are many hotel owners who reinvested in their properties during the pandemic and are preparing to reopen operations in the upcoming quarters. Over that same period, RED has further solidified its value proposition, which provides owners and operators a turnkey solution to their recreation, tour and activity and watersport experience offerings. Our background in preopening project management, operational execution and building high performing work teams with exemplary service and technical watersports skills tells a compelling story. We will continue to look for clients we can build more of these symbiotic relationships with.

Is there anything else you’d like to share with us?

There is a specific competency and skill set we’ve begun to speak about internally and are starting to see gain traction in social and training platforms, which is Emotional intelligence. The recovery from this pandemic is one which has impacted everyone in the world and has provided a common experience amongst all of us which didn’t exist before. Although each of us may have experienced it differently, it is something which we hope can bring us back together and teach us to be more empathetic to one another, building on those connections amongst us. Of course, we recommend one of the best places you can have those conversations is onboard one of our catamarans with a beverage in hand, watching the sunset fall off the horizon. Safe travels to everyone and thanks for the time. We hope to see you soon.

More on RED Hospitality and Leisure here.

Memorial Day illustration by Heather Skovlund for 360 Magazine

The Meaning Behind Memorial Day

THE MEANING BEHIND MEMORIAL DAY

By: Heather Skovlund-Reibsamen

“How important it is for us to recognize and celebrate our heroes and she-roes.” – Maya Angelou

Memorial Day, once referred to as Decoration Day, is an American holiday in the United States that honors military personnel along as well as mourn those that we have lost along the way. Decoration Day was for decorating graves with flowers, wreaths, and flags. Memorial Day is formerly observed on the last Monday of May each year. It is a solemn day, but it is also important to reflect upon, appreciate and be thankful for the freedom that we all get to enjoy every day in the United States of America.

Many gather with friends and family for barbeques and celebrating the beginning of summer while others visit cemeteries and memorials to remember their loved ones lost. Each year a national moment of remembrance takes place at 3:00 p.m. local time on Memorial Day. It is important to remember that we are not celebrating the wars, instead we are remembering those who served and those who gave their last breath in order to ensure that the freedoms of our country would be passed on to the next generations. We remember for the price they paid for the cost of our freedom – their lives given so ours could go on.

Memorial Day was originated after the American Civil War, where the United States faced the task of burying and honoring 600,000 to 800,000 Union and Confederate soldiers who died in the bloodiest military conflict in American history. The first commemoration of Memorial Day was held in Arlington National Cemetery on May 30, 1868. On this day, both Union and Confederate soldiers were laid to rest. Over the years, cities across the United States host Memorial Day parades that involve military personnel and members of veterans’ organizations. Americans sometimes wear a red poppy in remembrance of their loved ones, which is a tradition that was born from a World War 1 poem.  

In Flanders Fields” by John McCrae

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

Memorial Day has a different meaning behind it for every American. Here at 360 Magazine, we were able to get a few opinions from veterans in the United States.

  • Kyle Skovlund: United States Air Force – Memorial Day has a different meaning for me. Growing up, my parents would travel to Brookings, South Dakota each year to put flowers on the graves of those they had lost. When my own daughter passed away, I began doing the same thing. Memorial Day, for me, is a day to reflect on those that have been lost.
  • Michael Miller: United States Air Force – Memorial Day means remembering and celebrating. Remembering the great men and women that gave their life for our great nation and celebrating the freedoms their sacrifices have given us.
  • J.M. Skovlund: United States Army  – “Memorial Day means exactly what it was intended for, to remember and honor our fallen. They went above and beyond for our country, for the soldier on their left and right, and that’s something not everyone can say.” “Go out and remember the fallen the way you see fit. Don’t worry about what everyone else is doing. If it’s having a drink in their honor, do that. If it’s going to their grave to chat, do that. Either way, remember the fallen the best way you can, don’t disgrace them.”
Black Deer Festival illustration by Heather Skovlund for 360 Magazine

Black Deer Festival

BLACK DEER FIRST MAJOR MUSIC EVENT HAPPENING IN 2021 – JAKE BUGG JOINS ROCK ‘N’ ROLL HALL OF FAMERS AT ‘FESTIVAL OF THE YEAR’ IN KENT

HEADLINERS CONFIRMED FOR RESCHEDULED DATE
VAN MORRISON
SAVING GRACE featuring ROBERT PLANT & SUZI DIAN
FRANK TURNER & THE SLEEPING SOULS
JAKE BUGG (FULL BAND)

LATEST ARTISTS ANNOUNCED INCLUDE:
JAKE BUGG | THE CUBAN BROTHERS | GINGER WILDHEART & THE SINNERS
KITTY, DAISY AND LEWIS | DANNY GEORGE WILSON | BLUE ROSE CODE 

FULL LINE-UP HERE

“This looks like a great bill. I’ve worked alongside most of these people in recent times… over here or over there… there’s power and beauty. Looking forward to it…” Robert Plant

Black Deer Festival will be the first major music event to take place in the UK in June. The Kent festival, which is held in the grounds of England’s oldest deer park in Eridge Park, has already made a name for itself for its unique offering of authentic Americana, Southern-inspired food and drink and forest school style children’s activities. With a recent surge in ticket sales, organizers are confident that they will welcome people back through the gates this summer with plans to make Black Deer Festival the place to be when lockdown restrictions are eased on June 21st.
 
Black Deer are excited to let ticketholders know that some of the biggest names in live music have reconfirmed for the June 2021 dates with a top line-up including legendary Belfast Cowboy Van MorrisonRobert Plant’s latest collaboration Saving Grace with Suzi Dian, Irish roots superstar singer and songwriter Imelda May, award-winning songwriter Jake Bugg and emerging UK Americana artist Jade Bird.
  
Latest names added to an already-acclaimed 2021 line-up are Jake Bugg, The Cuban Brothers, Ginger Wildheart & The Sinners, Kitty, Daisy and Lewis, Danny George Wilson, Blue Rose Code, The Bar Steward Sons of Val Doonican, Treetop Flyers, The Admiral Sir Cloudesley Shovell, Steak, Broken Witt Rebels, Powerhouse Gospel Choir, Old Time Sailors, Hannah White, Jonathan Terrell, King Creature, The Paul Dunton Orchestra, Luke Jackson, Hayley Ross, Ruby Dew, James Kirby, Dull Knife, Simeon Hammond Dallas, Jinda Biant, Eddy Smith and the 507, Chris Fox, The Mountain Firework Company, Hobo and the Hippies, My Girl the River, Izzie Yardley, Coney Island Maybe, The River Flows, Ava’Mae, Rattlesnake Hearts, Phil Hooley, Red, Green and Blue and David Mumford.

Returning to the festival this year are the much-loved Black Deer Songwriter Sessions which will take place on the main stage across each day of the festival and include performances from Frank TurnerImelda May and returning favorite Irish Mythen. The Songwriter Sessions are a unique opportunity to see this caliber of artists together on stage talking in depth about their music and revealing the stories that have inspired their songwriting.
 
Showcasing music of an independent spirit across multiple stages, exquisite live fire cooking, layers of Americana inspired lifestyle and custom motorcycle culture, Black Deer is a family staycation destination with a community ethos.
 
“We’re very excited to be able to push our plans, bring together our beloved community for a 2021 edition of Black Deer and deliver one hell of a (safe!) summer party. The UK live music industry has been hit hard and we feel it is so important to support our artists, their teams and the wider festival community at the earliest opportunity. It’s not going to be easy, but we’re doing everything we can to make Black Deer Festival 2021 one to remember!” – Gill Tee Deborah Shilling, Co-Founders
 
“I am excited beyond words to be getting back into the live saddle again, playing with my band to a real audience – after the year we’ve had, it’s an incredible feeling. It feels good to kick off with an independent festival as well. I can’t wait!” – Frank Turner

Committed to giving 1500 tickets to NHS Key Workers


With some members of the Black Deer team having been personally affected by the pandemic and having seen first-hand the incredible work and sacrifices made by so many, they have decided to show their gratitude and thanks by inviting 1,500 NHS and key workers as guests to Black Deer Festival 2021.

F-wheel A5 Electric Bike illustrated by Heather Skovlund for 360 Magazine

F-wheel A5 Electric Bike

By: Heather Skovlund x Vaughn Lowery

The F-wheel A5 electric bike has all the perks to an e-bike that you could dream of having while headed to your destination. It sports 14-inch wheels, an ergonomically designed frame, seating for adults and kids, and is easy to maneuver and store tight spaces with its folding capabilities. While you’re likely to see tons of these types of e-bikes zipping around just about any city in China, it’s a fairly extraordinary e-bike in the US. 

Curb Appeal

Affiliates of 360 Magazine had the opportunity to test the capability of the F-wheel A5 e-bike. The A5 is sleek and holds a trendy appearance with its 14-inch wheels and minimalist aluminum alloy frame. The A5 is designed for dense urban living with its durability, upgraded seat, and back seat perfect for transporting cargo (with bungee cords) or even a second person/child. The F-wheel is available in three colors: black, red, and white. This sleek e-bike is available in F-wheel A5 Standard as well as F-wheel A5 Deluxe. To customize the look of your new ride, look no further than Gabe Majalca, mastermind of Good Vibe Gliders for an enhanced flare.

Performance

With the amazing durability of the F-wheel A5, you will be able to sightsee in style and go shopping on a whim. The powerful 350W 48V motor will get you to your destination with ease with a max speed of 25KM/H. The F-wheel runs on a 7.5AH battery that is portable and removable, which is fantastic for charging. The added suspensions work nicely for a smoother ride with a noticeable difference in the seat post suspension. The acceleration is powerful, it has been reviewed at around 500W continuous and up to 750W peak for speeds. There are three different riding modes with the A5: Pure Electric Mode, Boost Mode, and Manpower Mode. The F-wheel A5 Deluxe is equipped with a LG lithium battery with a capacity of up to 21AH, with a BMS battery management system to help battery life up to 180KM.

Technology

As previously mentioned, the A5 has three different riding modes. The first, Pure Electric Mode, allows you to ride with no cycling of the pedals. The second, Boost Mode, allows you to pedal with an assist from the power source. Lastly, Manpower Mode, enables you to ride like a human-powered bicycle – no need to power on. There is a power display and real-time speed display in addition to the different modes offered: eco, medium and high. The A5 comes with two keys as well as two fobs to easily start the e-bike up. There is also an extra removable battery. The front and rear brakes work well as well as the front lights and taillights. There is a light on the back of the bike that lights up “EBIKE” which adds a subtle touch of flare to the bike. This e-bike is low maintenance without a derailleur or gears. The 14-inch tires are in a mag wheel – there are no spokes that need to be tuned or that will break. The F-wheel A5 weighs 22.5KG and easily folds up for easier transportation such as when you’re heading into an elevator, riding the Amtrack, climbing stairs or simply placing the e-bike in your apartment. Just simply fold the handlebars down, fold the frame in the front, fold the pedals down, remove the seat and you’re set. There are also sensors on the A5 to notify you if someone or something is too close the bike along with a lock on the battery.

Competition

Competition is very limited with the sleek improvements of the F-wheel A5 electric bike (formally DYU Smart Electric Bike D3). Priced at $700 and worth every cent. The closest competitor is the EB7 Elite Commuter from Swagtron. The next competitor would be the Flido D25 Folding Electric Commuter Bike. The electric bike trend has been on the rise due to communities embracing the go “green” activity. A review left on DYU’s website from Clayton Kent states that the A5 is the “perfect commuter bike enduring at least 70 NYC blocks a day” as well as “it has saved me a lot of money not having to use the train”. With the new improvements to the design and overall functionality to the F-wheel A5 electric bike, it is sure to be the front runner for delivery workers, professionals, and kids at heart.

Photo by Armon Hayes
Photo credit: Armon Hayes
Photo Credit: Armon Hayes
Photo Credit: Armon Hayes
Photo Credit: Armon Hayes
Photo Credit: Armon Hayes

QxA with Akeem Mair

This holiday season, actor Akeem Mair took the time to speak with 360 Magazine about his craft, his inspirations, how his career has been impacted by COVID-19, and more. Movie star Akeem Mair is the entertainment industry’s up-and-coming icon. In his career as an artist, he has appeared in several movie productions including All About Money, A Wonderful World, Limbo, Life of a Villain, Red, Fine Line, Silent Love, The Kidnap, etc. He’s worked with many production companies, including the Columbia College of Hollywood Production.

Akeem has signed with two agencies: Commercial Talent Agency (under Sarah Angeli) and Minc Talent (under Mariko Ballentine). At 32, Akeem is in his prime. With his noteworthy work ethic and passion, he is destined for greater heights. In fact, he has over 5 million views for a single video alone – the time when he appeared for The Ellen DeGeneres Show, which Ellen described as “the best episode she’s ever seen.”

Besides this feature with 360 Magazine, Akeem appears in many publications such as NY Wire’s Top 25 Individuals, US Reporter’s Top 15 Entrepreneurs, LA Wire’s Top 20 IG Accounts to Follow in 2020, and many more. Read on to hear 360’s interview with Akeem below.

What do you love most about being an actor?

I found a strong love of being in front of the camera with everybody watching. It’s like my escape from my own reality, which is refreshing to me. I get the opportunity to pour myself into different characters and experience that person’s life. How they see the world and how different their life experiences are from mines. I love to learn how they think, how they would react in certain situations, the way they talk and walk, the way they dress, etc. Then, you can take what you learn from playing that character and use it to make your own life more complete. Meaning if you like how that character approaches life, then copy and apply it. At first the camera scared me – I’m not gonna lie. But a director once told me that the fear I show in front of the camera robs the audience of their entertainment. Once I broke out of that, my understanding of my own craft changed. Acting is my life!

Did you always wanted to be an actor, or did you have other ambitions?

Actually, believe it or not, I wanted to be a financial banker. I watched Michael Douglas in the film called, “The Game,” and became hooked after that. I saw the 2000 BMW 740 I, the designer suits, the excitement of winning their clients’ money in the office, the personal maid that lives at his house, and I always loved crunching numbers in a calculator. But as I was working at Ralph’s grocery store when a loyal customer ending up changing my whole life. I was a cashier, and she came into my line with a sad demeanor. I could tell something was troubling her, so I tried to brighten up her day with my personality. I said “Hi, it’s good to see you again, did you find everything ok?” She said softly, “Yes I did, thank you!” I said, “Usually I see you smiling, but whatever you’re going through I know God will not give you more than you can handle! He has something better for you!” After the transaction I said, “Have a Blessed day! I hope to see you again soon.” Immediately she paused and finally looked up at me for the first time and I could tell she had been crying. She asked me, “Are you an actor?” I said, “No. Why do you ask?” She said, “Because your energy is filled with so much positive energy. You move people by it. You lifted up my spirits after I just lost my house in a foreclosure. Thank you!” Her reply shocked me. After she left, I went home that day and wondered, What would my life look like if I was a successful actor? I thought about how I would be able to help my family so much more and how I can infect millions of people with the same positive energy. That night, I searched ‘how to become an actor’ and it said most start as an extra on a movie set. The next day I reached out to Central Casting in Burbank for their free introduction and here I am today! I am more than satisfied and really love what I do!

How has COVID-19 impacted your industry?

My industry has changed a lot! At first, the acting classes I would attend would be at different acting studios across Los Angeles and held in person. Same as the auditions I would get. And I would have to deal with sitting in the heavy traffic, busy freeways, hoping to get to where I need to on time. Now it’s crazy to think everything is happening on my iPhone 11 Pro! My auditions are either through Zoom or I would have to submit a self-tape that would record off of my phone’s camera and be edited in the iMovie feature. All of my classes have been online through Zoom. So, the coaches now email you a link to jump on when class starts. The biggest issue now is not the heavy traffic, it’s the internet connection. If you have bad WiFi, it easily destroys your Zoom live audition and costs you the job. So, it is extremely important now to have amazing WiFi connection.

Do you have other passions besides acting?

I love writing poetry; it really soothes my soul. I like to write out all the emotions and experiences I go through like in poems and lyrics. 2pac was the one who really inspired me to use my pen as an outlet.

I appreciate Vaughn and 360 Magazine

For allowing me to tell my story

It was a journey to chase my dreams

And stayed away from things ain’t for me

I would sit in the movie theaters

And picture myself reaching glory

I knew could take care of my family

If I stop feeling sorry

By working hard building my legacy

It creates an attraction

Sending me blessings of opportunities

I would of never would of imagine

I had to escape from my reality

By following my passions

I can’t be worried about anybody else

I constantly take action

When I’m finished grinding everyday

I die as a legend

What is the biggest life lesson you learned?

You have to decide to go after your dreams because that’s what you want to do. There’s going to be so many people in your ear telling you different things and most of the time, it’s family because they want to protect you from failing. The only problem about that is it takes you away from doing what you love and moves you closer to a life of regret. So, take your time and really think about your dreams and how you want your life to be. Take out a piece of paper and write what you want out of life. I am an actor today because it’s my dream. I wrote it down, I proclaimed it in front of the mirror, and I tell my friends and family all the time what my dreams are and that I am going to achieve them.

What are the biggest challenges you have faced and how did you overcome them?

My biggest challenge is balancing my money and time. Because let me tell you, I’ve invested a lot of money to strive as an actor. Dreams come with lots of sacrifices. This is the one side of dreams that is not so glamorous. I can’t watch television when I get home because I have to practice, do auditions, or attend classes. Before I can even think about buying the latest technology, clothes, or shoes, I would have to also think about classes, camera equipment, printing, headshots, costumes, etc. You have to be willing at any moment to sacrifice for your dreams and it’s the hardest part. I’m giving up sleep most days because I’m so busy, but I love it!!

Who are the people who are your biggest influences and why?

Tupac Shakur, Denzel Washington and Eddie Murphy are my biggest influences. Everyone knows why Eddie Murphy is so big of an inspiration to me. It’s how I got my name! His character, Akeem, from Coming to America made my parents fall in love with the name due to his performance. As I’m older now and have watched it for myself, it’s crazy so much of my personality has rubbed off of him and into me. He possesses a sense of humor and radiates authority, yet he remains humble, practices kindness and self-sacrifices for the people around him. Denzel Washington is my next inspiration. I always love how Denzel approaches his game. The confidence, swag, fearlessness, and mental toughness he possesses in most of the characters he played, you can just feel his presence through your television. His Oscar performance character Alonzo Harris in Training Day was unbelievable. You felt the selfishness, greed, carelessness, ruthlessness, and his betrayal. I would love to ask him, “how do you get to that place in a character and stay there?” Finally, 2pac! His wisdom and his work ethic are what really blow my mind. I love how he was able to captivate a crowd of people and get everyone to follow him around. To be so young and so ahead of his time is crazy. He inspires me to think ahead always and to do more than what you think your capable of doing. And stop taking breaks! I remember how upset he got when his team took breaks and reminds them how time is short.

If you could change one thing you did at the beginning of your career, what would it be?

I would go back to tell the younger me to keep track of your day. Stop worrying about your yearly resolutions and worry about your daily resolutions. Because if you can’t take care of a simple day, how on earth are you going to conquer your year? It’s going to escape you every time. I always hear it in people’s voices when they talk about what they are going to be or going to have. I’m like, wait a minute, what are you going to do today? And people are usually confused or haven’t thought about it. See, it’s that’s answer right there that’s gonna kill everything you just told me.

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Mina Tocalini, 360 Magazine, COVID-19

Annual (RED) Shopathon Lights Up Today

The sixth annual (RED) Shopathon lights up today ahead of World AIDS Day and Giving Tuesday, December 1st. Offering more than 200 stylish and giftable products that give back with every purchase, the campaign is supported by Merck (known as MSD outside the U.S. and Canada) and will see (RED) generate money for the Global Fund to fight two pandemics: AIDS and COVID-19.

THE ALL-NEW (echo)RED AND OVER 170+ (RED) PRODUCTS ON AMAZON.COM/RED:

For the fourth year, (RED) is partnering with Amazon to give customers a single destination to shop more than 170 products that give back, spanning tech, health & wellness, kitchen & home, and more.

New for 2020 is the next-generation, limited-edition (echo)RED, featuring an all-new sleek spherical design, premium sound, and smart home hub support for Zigbee, Bluetooth Low Energy, and Amazon Sidewalk. Amazon will donate $10 of every (echo)RED sale to the Fund for the Global Fund to support COVID-19 response and HIV/AIDS programs in sub-Saharan Africa.

Customers can also donate to (RED)’s fight against these two pandemics on any Alexa-enabled device by simply saying, “Alexa, donate to (RED).” With all products available at amazon.com/red, shoppers can put impact into every purchase. The limited-edition (echo)RED is available starting today for only $99.99 (amazon.com/echored).

(RED) LAUNCHES ITS FIRST-EVER VIRTUAL POP-UP SHOP ON SNAPCHAT:

(RED) is launching its first-ever immersive pop-up shop on Snapchat. Using Snapchat’s AR technology, users can now browse and buy Amazon.com/RED products directly from their mobile app, and support (RED)’s fight against AIDS and COVID-19. The lens, supported by Merck (known as MSD outside the U.S. and Canada), is live worldwide today and accessible throughout the duration of the campaign. Snap, shop, and save lives by going to this link.

Taylor Swift illustration for 360 magazine

Taylor Swift Achieves 12 New RIAA Certifications

Taylor Swift has garnered a total of 12 new certifications from the RIAA. Among them, her critically-acclaimed, 5 star 2020 album, folklore, has achieved gold and now certified platinum status.

The new album, folklore arrived this summer and quickly gained widespread acclaim and major audience excitement. It rapidly became the top-selling record of 2020 worldwide and is the only album this year to cross 1 million albums in pure sales in the U.S. 

Swift notably completed “the longest consecutive run at number one since 2016” by acquiring six straight weeks at the top of the Billboard 200 chart. Additionally, folklore returns to number one this week on the Billboard 200 chart, reaching eight nonconsecutive weeks at the top of the chart. What’s even more notable, Taylor has achieved 48 cumulative weeks at number one across all of her chart-topping albums which marks a record among women artists. 

Other RIAA certifications include “You Need To Calm Down” which minted triple-platinum, platinum, and gold and “The Man” which is certified gold and platinum. Her song “Me,” featuring Brendon Urie of Panic! At The Disco, is now double-platinum. Additionally, the single “Lover” picked up gold, platinum, and double-platinum certifications.

Taylor stands out as the only artist to have seven albums each sell at least 500,000 copies in a single week. Her albums, Fearless, Speak Now, RED, 1989, reputation, Lover and folklore, have all been a stellar success. Plus, she remains the first and only female artist in the 21st century to score five number one studio albums in the UK. 

Folklore is the ten-time GRAMMY® Award-winning, record-breaking superstar’s eighth album and we can’t wait to see what the future holds for Swift. 

Red phantom, red.org, hiv, aids, 360 MAGAZINE, Miami, Mickalene Thomas

ROLLS-ROYCE REVEALS RED PHANTOM

ROLLS-ROYCE REVEALS RED PHANTOM COMMISSION WITH MICKALENE THOMAS

Auction to Benefit (RED)’s Fight Against AIDS

  • The House of Rolls-Royce marks 115 years of luxury with spectacular Red Phantom commission to benefit the global AIDS charity (RED)’s fight against AIDS.  
  • Rolls-Royce partners with acclaimed contemporary artist Mickalene Thomas who will create a custom artwork and livery wrap for the winning bidder
  • Exclusive December 4 – 13, 2019 online with global auction partner RM Sotheby’s
  • One of a kind, 2020 Red Phantom revealed during celebration at One Thousand Museum during Art Basel in Miami Beach

The House of Rolls Royce today revealed images of a Bespoke 2020 Red Phantom, commissioned to benefit (RED), the global charity and its fight to end AIDS.  First sketches of the red-themed creation were revealed by the world’s leading luxury manufacturer seven months ago at the Sotheby’s Galleries in New York City. On Wednesday evening, December 4, The Red Phantom Bespoke Commission will be unveiled at a gala event at the One Thousand Museum in Miami as RM Sotheby’s launches an exclusive online auction to run through December 13, 2019.   Proceeds above the cost of the item* will benefit (RED)’s fight to end AIDS.

The winning collector will have the unique opportunity to collaborate with one of the world’s most respected contemporary artists, Mickalene Thomas, to create a work of art in the form of a custom wrap for the exterior of the car. Thomas will also create an original artwork inspired by the Red Phantom for the collector. When the digital hammer falls, the ultimate bidder will be the proud owner of the Red Phantom, a personalized work and design by Ms. Thomas and the honor of having supported (RED) in its mission. 

“It is an honor and privilege to present this one of a kind commission created by the more than 2,000 men and women in Goodwood, Home of Rolls-Royce,” said Martin Fritsches, President and CEO of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars Americas. “Everyone on our team is deeply inspired by this world-class commission, and equally by the importance of the cause it was created to support – (RED)’s fight to end AIDS.  We are proud to partner with Mickalene Thomas, RM Sotheby’s and our other partners to achieve an outstanding result from this auction.”

“We’re so grateful to Rolls Royce for donating profits from the Red Phantom to the fight to end AIDS.  We need all forces mobilized against this pandemic which is the leading cause of death among young women. We also want to thank Mickalene Thomas for her creative genius, as well as our partners Bank of America and Netjets for their support of this auction to help the Global Fund wipe AIDS off the planet.” Said Jennifer Lotito, Chief Operations Officer, (RED)

The exterior wears a newly developed Bespoke color finish of Crystal over Magma Red with tiny particles of crystal captured in the final layers of finish creating a luxurious luminescence. The handcrafted Bespoke leather interior in Brilliant Arctic White is offset by bright Mugello Red highlights overseen by the iconic and colorful Mugello Red ‘Shooting Starlight Headliner.’ Housed within a single-piece glass fascia and extending across the instrument panel, the Gallery design, ‘Red Regatta Sails’ is constructed of Bespoke Mugello Red leather.  

This Red Phantom is waiting for a home to benefit (RED)’s fight to end AIDS.

About (RED)® 

(RED) was  founded in 2006 by Bono and Bobby Shriver  to engage businesses and people in the fight against AIDS. (RED) partners with the world’s most iconic brands that contribute proceeds from (RED)-branded goods and services to the Global Fund. (RED) Partners include: AirAsia, Alessi, Amazon, Andaz, Apple, Bank of America, Beats by Dr. Dre, Belvedere, Calm, Claro, Dannon, Durex, eos, Fatboy USA, Girl Skateboards, Johnson & Johnson, MCM, Montblanc, Mophie, quip, Salesforce, SAP, Starbucks, Telcel, Vespa, Vilebrequin and Wanderlust.

To date, (RED) has generated more than $600 million for the Global Fund to fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, to support HIV/AIDS grants in Ghana, Kenya, Lesotho, Rwanda, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania and Zambia. 100 percent of that money goes to work on the ground – no overhead is taken. Global Fund grants that (RED) supports have impacted over 140 million people with prevention, treatment, counseling, HIV testing and care services. For more information, please see www.red.org

The Global Fund is a partnership designed to accelerate the end of AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria as epidemics. As an international organization, the Global Fund mobilizes and invests more than US$4 billion a year to support programs run by local experts in more than 100 countries. In partnership with governments, civil society, technical agencies, the private sector and people affected by the diseases, we are challenging barriers and embracing innovation.

About RED Phantom

This very special Red Phantom has been designed to benefit (RED)’s fight to end AIDS.  Proceeds above the cost of the item* will benefit the global charity. 

The commission design, by the world-renowned Bespoke Design Collective in Goodwood, England, Home of Rolls-Royce stands alone as a natural authority. Designers have carried the powerful Red theme throughout the design in subtle and luxurious style. This Red Phantom makes a statement, especially upon its regal arrival.

The exterior wears a Bespoke color finish of Crystal over Magma Red. Tiny particles of crystal have been captured in the final layers of finish give it a luxurious luminescence. Recently created by the Rolls-Royce design engineers, the finish is comprised of five layers, each hand-polished for more than five hours. The vehicle’s wood veneers were expertly selected and finished by hand with six coats of lacquer to ensure a perfect finish. 

The handcrafted Bespoke leather interior and appointments throughout are created from 9 hides of hand-selected and drum-dyed leather with a color scheme of stunning Arctic White with Mugello Red highlights. And overhead the new owner will enjoy a newly designed icon of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars, a Mugello Red Shooting Starlight Headliner with 1,600 fiber optic wires extending the entire length of the interior ceiling. 

The new Phantom introduced a Bespoke opportunity previously unseen in luxury motoring to showcase a new level of interior artistry and craftsmanship. Housed within a single-piece glass fascia and extending across the instrument panel, the Gallery delivers visual and emotional elements that are unique to Phantom. The Gallery is constructed of Bespoke Mugello Red leather design entitled ‘Regatta Sails’ assembled in a clean room environment. This commission features custom treadplates commemorating the 115th Anniversary of the world’s premier name in luxury

About Mickalene Thomas

Mickalene Thomas (b. 1971, Camden, New Jersey) is best known for her elaborate paintings composed of rhinestones, acrylic and enamel. She makes paintings, collages, photography, video, and installations that draw on art history and popular culture to create a contemporary vision of female sexuality, beauty, and power. Blurring the distinction between object and subject, concrete and abstract, real and imaginary, Thomas constructs complex portraits, landscapes, and interiors in order to examine how identity, gender, and sense-of-self are informed by the ways women are represented in art and popular culture.

Mickalene Thomas’s work is held in the permanent collections of New York’s Museum of Modern Art, Brooklyn Museum, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, Whitney Museum of American Art, Hammer Museum, and Smithsonian American Art Museum, among many others. She lives and works in Brooklyn, New York. For more information, visit www.mickalenethomas.com

George Thorogood To Host “Red, White and Rock 2019”

GEORGE THOROGOOD TO HOST ABC RADIO’S “RED, WHITE AND ROCK 2019” SPECIAL – AIRING JULY 4 WEEKEND

Rock legend George Thorogood will host ABC Radio’s “Red, White and Rock 2019” music special that will air on ABC affiliates over the upcoming July 4 holiday weekend – July 4, 5, 6 and 7 (airing at different times in different markets).

“Red, White and Rock 2019” will feature rock music from American bands and artists including Aerosmith, The Allman Brothers Band, Heart, Cheap Trick, Santana, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Tom Petty, Bob Seger, Bruce Springsteen, Van Halen, ZZ Top, and more.  The special features insights into the music from rock icons and celebrates the cities, artists and songs that comprise the proud landscape of American rock and roll.

George Thorogood And The Destroyers is currently on their summer / fall “Good To Be Bad: 45 Years of Rock” 31-city tour, that began on June 22 in Hinckley, Minnesota and continues through October 19 in Battle Creek, Michigan (with additional dates forthcoming).

The group is in their fifth consecutive year of supporting the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) by donating $1 from each ticket sold at participating venues on their “Good To Be Bad: 45 Years of Rock” tour to LLS.   Additionally, Epiphone recently announced the release of the Ltd. Ed. George Thorogood “White Fang” ES-125TDC Outfit guitar.

Below are markets/stations where the special will air:

New York, NY WBPM-FM
New York, NY WJGK-FM
Chicago, IL WKQX-HD2
Chicago, IL WLPO-AM
Dallas-Ft. Worth, TX KBUS-FM
Houston, TX KHVL-AM
Seattle-Tacoma, WA KPQ-FM
Denver, CO KCOW-AM
Sacramento-Stockton-Modesto, CA KSEG-FM
Sacramento-Stockton-Modesto, CA KODS-FM
Nashville, TN WRUS-AM
Harrisburg-Lancaster-Lebanon-York, PA WLUI-AM
Jacksonville, FL WSOS-AM
Greensboro-High Point-Winston Salem, NC WTOB-AM
Albuquerque-Santa Fe, NM KRWN-FM
Memphis, TN WEGR-FM
Buffalo, NY WGWE-FM
Buffalo, NY WDOE-AM
Wilkes Barre-Scranton, PA WEZX-FM
Lexington, KY WKYM-FM
Flint-Saginaw-Bay City, MI WILZ-FM
Honolulu, HI KRKH-FM
Honolulu, HI KORL-HD2
Omaha, NE KSWI-FM
Charleston-Huntington, WV WZZZ-FM
Springfield, MO KSPQ-FM
Tucson, AZ KLPX-FM
Des Moines-Ames, IA KEDB-FM
Wichita – Hutchinson, KS KFXJ-FM
Syracuse, NY WIII-FM
Portland-Auburn, ME WLKZ-FM
El Paso, TX KVLC-FM
Jackson, MS WVBG-FM
Davenport, IA-Rock Island-Moline, IL KCQQ-FM
South Bend-Elkhart, IN WRSW-FM
Boise, ID KKGL-FM
Tri-Cities, TN-VA WVEK-FM
Ft. Wayne, IN WARU-FM
Ft. Wayne, IN WXKE-FM
Augusta, GA WKSX-FM
Greenville-New Bern-Washington, NC WAVQ-AM
Lincoln-Hastings-Kearney, NE KRGY-FM
Fargo-Valley City, ND KPFX-FM
Fargo-Valley City, ND KDVL-FM
Macon, GA WBML-AM
Traverse City-Cadillac, MI WKLZ-FM
Traverse City-Cadillac, MI WKLT-FM
Lafayette, LA KVPI-FM
Eugene, OR KLOO-FM
Santa Barbara-Santa Maria-San Luis Obispo, KZOZ-FM
La Crosse-Eau Claire, WI WPRE-AM
Amarillo, TX KLMX-FM
Wausau-Rhinelander, WI WGLX-FM
Medford-Klamath Falls, OR KFXX-FM
Salisbury, MD WNCL-FM
Minot-Bismarck-Dickinson, ND KATQ-FM
Sioux City, IA KUQQ-FM
Rochester, MN-Mason City, IA-Austin, MN KLKK-FM
Bangor, ME WWMJ-FM
Gainesville, FL WXOF-FM
Idaho Falls-Pocatello, ID KSRA-FM
Missoula, MT KZOQ-FM
Rapid City, SD KQRQ-FM
Elmira, NY WMTT-FM
Grand Junction-Montrose, CO KSTR-FM
Parkersburg, WV WRZZ-FM
Cheyenne, WY-Scottsbluff, NE KMOR-FM
Great Falls, MT KMON-HD4
Lima, OH WBUK-FM