Posts tagged with "The Los Angeles Times"

illustration by Mina Tocalini for use by 360 Magazine

DELTA VARIANT PUTS NORMAL BACK-TO-SCHOOL SEASON AT RISK

By: Clara Guthrie

There was a period in the late spring and early summer of this past year in which it seemed America’s COVID-19 struggles were nearing some long-awaited conclusion: the last few moments of breathlessness before a collective sigh of relief. At that time, students and their parents looked forward to a seemingly normal back-to-school season. Yet, the recent rise in the Delta variant has introduced a new wave of doubt.

On August 8 alone, The New York Times reported 36,068 new Covid-19 cases and a seven-day average of 110,360 total cases in the United States. Covid-related deaths are also on the rise, with a seven-day average of 516 deaths. This figure has risen from a weekly average of 188 deaths only one month prior, on July 6. Experts attribute these rising numbers to the highly contagious Delta variant overlaid with low vaccination rates in certain areas across the country. When asked about these trends in mid-July, Dr. Rochelle Walensky, Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), said, “This is becoming a pandemic of the unvaccinated. We are seeing outbreaks of cases in parts of the country that have low vaccination coverage because unvaccinated people are at risk.”

Unfortunately, as the Delta variant continues to run rampant throughout unvaccinated communities, people who are fully vaccinated are also being infected. Although, it is far rarer. These “break-through” cases speak mainly to the wild infectiousness of the Delta variant, coupled with the facts that no vaccine is 100% effective and that our knowledge of how long immunity lasts after vaccination is still quite murky. According to CNBC, however, “break-through” cases still represent fewer than 0.08% of those who have been fully vaccinated in the United States since the start of the year.

With that being said, the Delta variant is impacting the hopes of a normal back-to-school season in two distinct ways. The first, perhaps more obvious way, is that parents and teachers are fearing for students’ health. This fear suggests a potential return to online learning and more strict social distancing and mask mandates enforced within schools.

It is important to note that COVID-19 poses a far lesser threat to young children than to adults; the risk of becoming severely ill from the virus increases for those over the age of 50 and only grows with age. According to the CDC, the risk of serious illness or complications from COVID-19 for children is actually lower than that from the flu. However, children under the age of 12 are not yet eligible for any form of vaccination. This restriction is raising concerns about how susceptible younger age groups are to becoming sick, even if that sickness does not lead to any serious complications.

Thus, many parents and school districts are pursuing a range COVID-19 precautions to ensure the safety of students. Time Magazine shared a story last week of a school board in Des Moines, Iowa that has already decided to offer a virtual learning option for elementary school students. The ability to transition to in-person learning is available whenever the family feels comfortable enough to do so. This move was, in part, forced by the recent ruling of eight states, including Iowa, to ban schools from being able to require masks – despite the CDC’s recommendation that all students should wear masks inside schools, regardless of whether or not they are vaccinated. “Had we been able to follow the CDC recommendations that everyone in school is masked, regardless of their vaccine status—if we were able to mandate that, then I think we’d be having a different conversation here,” Phil Roeder, a spokesperson for Des Moines’ Polk County public schools, said.

Other counties are having similar struggles, even without the imposition from state governments to ban mask mandates within schools. For example, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio announced in May that all online learning would be eliminated come fall, a decision that he has not yet reversed. But many parents are now petitioning for online options for their children as safety concerns continue to rise. One parent, Farah Despeignes, who is the president of the Bronx Parent Leaders Advocacy Group and has two middle-school-aged sons, said, “When you think about the conditions of the schools with old buildings, with not enough ventilation, that are co-located, that are overcrowded—for us, in the Bronx, in underserved communities, it’s not as simple as, ‘Well, let’s just get back to school.’”

In California, options for students are equally limited. According to The Los Angeles Times, the state has done away with “hybrid learning, ”a combination of in-person and online learning. As a result of such, Los Angeles County parents had until August 6 to choose between either solely in-person or online learning for their children. The latter option is expected to take the form of an independent study, rather than the supportive online learning of last school year. On August 6th, L.A. Unified School District reported that only 10,280 of their almost 665,000 students opted for the online option.

The second prominent way in which the Delta variant is affecting back-to-school season is through the shopping behavior of students and their families. Back when the hopes of a normal school year were still high, The National Retail Federation predicted that consumers with children K-12 would spend a record-breaking 37.1 billion dollars this year. Furthermore, it was predicted that back-to-college spending would reach 71 billion dollars. These predictions were due to the excitement associated with a long-awaited return to the classroom after over a year away, when items like lunchboxes and backpacks seemed superfluous.

However, according to a recent poll by First Insight, many consumers are feeling anxious about returning to stores, trying on clothing in dressing rooms and making big purchases due to the risk of the Delta variant. In fact, 56% of respondents said they are actively cutting back their spending at retailers. The CEO of Bath Bed & Beyond, Mark Tritton, told CNBC that their stores have observed people delaying their back-to-school investments, and that peak spending may extend further into September than usual.

As many students return to their classrooms and the Food and Drug Administration continues to work on improving vaccines for individuals under the age of 12, it will become more and more clear how great of a mark Covid-19 has left on the American schooling system and the children within it.

Korn and Staind Summer Tour Poster via Livenation for use by 360 Magazine

Korn × Staind U.S. Summer Tour

Grammy Award-winning, multi-platinum band Korn have announced an epic U.S. summer tour featuring very special guests Staind on all dates. The tour will see both bands traversing the country this summer and will give fans the chance to see two of the biggest forces in rock perform on the same stage each night.

Produced by Live Nation, the coast-to-coast 28-city outing will kick off August 5th in West Palm Beach, FL and make stops in Long Island, Detroit, Irvine, Phoenix, Austin and more, before wrapping up with a performance at Dallas’ Dos Equis Pavilion on September 21st. Furthermore, both bands will perform at Louisville, Kentucky’s Louder Than Life Festival on September 23rd.

A stunning paean to loss and darkness, Korn’s 2019 album THE NOTHING proved to be another historic release for the band. It marked their 14th Top 10 entry on the Billboard 200 and lifted them into rarified air giving them the fifth-most Top 10 debuts of any rock band in the history of the chart. Led by singles You’ll Never Find Me,” “Can You Hear Me,” and “Cold.” Noisey stated “THE NOTHING’s mission of probing the hidden corners and harsh realities of life within a shroud discordant darkness.” REVOLVER crowned THE NOTHING as “KORN’s best album in over 10 years,” while Metal Hammer also liked the album, stating it “recaptures the genuine darkness of their earlier works” in a glowing 4.5-out-of-5 star review. The Fader added, “KORN have never shied away from innovation… the icons have always looked forward,” and Los Angeles Times applauded the “deep and potent performances from the band, evoking their ever-present rage but also feelings of loss and isolation.” NME affirmed, “This urgent and important record will ensure the veterans don’t get lost in the shuffle.” Once again, Korn redefines, revitalizes, and reimagines the scope of rock music as perennial outliers and enduring iconoclasts.

Formed in 1995, Staind has released seven studio albums and eight Top 10 singles, selling over 15 million records worldwide. The album Break The Cycle, released in 2001 and RIAA certified 5x platinum, featured the smash single “It’s Been Awhile,” one of the most played songs in modern rock history, spending 20 weeks at #1. In 2019 after a five-year hiatus, Staind reunited for some unforgettable festival performances, and a hometown reunion show at Foxwoods Casino in Mashantucket, CT where their new album, Live: It’s Been Awhile was recorded.

About KORN:

The Grammy Award-winning rock icons created a culture with their landmark self-titled full-length debut. Generations of fans turned the band into a household name with two GRAMMY Awards, sales of 40 million albums worldwide, hundreds of sold out shows and over 1 billion streams—unprecedented achievements for a band of any era. Vocalist Jonathan Davis, guitarists James “Munky” Shaffer and Brian “Head” Welch, bassist Reginald “Fieldy” Arvizu, and drummer Ray Luzier, have continued to push the limits of the rock, alternative and metal genres, while remaining a pillar of influence for legions of fans and generations of artists around the globe. Dubbed “the soundtrack for a generation’s arrival” by The Fader, the level of Korn’s reach transcends accolades and platinum certifications. They are “a genuine movement in a way bands cannot be now,” attests The Ringer. They represent a new archetype and radical innovation. Their ability to transcend genre makes barriers seem irrelevant as they endure as a raw and real force. After all these accolades, broken records, and changed lives, Korn are still and forever here to stay.

About Staind:

Staind is comprised of lead vocalist and rhythm guitarist Aaron Lewis, lead guitarist Mike Mushok, bassist and backing vocalist Johnny April, and drummer Sal Giancarelli. The band was formed in 1995 in their hometown of Springfield, Massachusetts. Over the course of their career, the band has released seven studio albums and eight Top 10 singles, selling over 15 million albums worldwide. Break The Cycle, released in 2001 and RIAA certified 5x platinum, featured the smash single, “It’s Been Awhile,” one of the most played songs in modern rock radio history, spending 20 weeks at Number 1. In 2019 after a five-year hiatus, STAIND reunited for some unforgettable festival performances, and a hometown reunion show at Foxwoods Casino in Mashantucket, CT where their latest album, Live: It’s Been Awhile was recorded.

Save Your Tears by The Weeknd feat. Ariana Grande for use by 360 Magazine

THE WEEKND × ARIANA GRANDE – SAVE YOUR TEARS

THE WEEKND RELEASES SAVE YOUR TEARS REMIX AND OFFICIAL VIDEO FEATURING ARIANA GRANDE

LISTEN HERE
 
WATCH HERE

The Weeknd unveils the much anticipated “Save Your Tears Remix” with Ariana Grande via XO/Republic Records. Listen to “Save Your Tears (Remix)” HERE. 

Watch the official animated video with both stars directed by Jack Brown and produced by Blinkink HERE.

The diamond-selling icon paired with Grammy winner Grande, continuing a tradition of epic collaborations together such as “Love Me Harder” and “off the table.”

The original Save Your Tears remains a standout from The Weeknd’s historic multi-platinum 2020 opus After Hours. The song not only went double platinum and eclipsed 1 billion streams, but it also currently holds #1 at Top 40 Radio.

The Weeknd is the Most Streamed R&B Artist of 2021 and After Hours remains the most streamed R&B album of this year continuing on from its release in early 2020. He has 2 songs in the Top 5 Most Streamed Globally with “Blinding Lights” and “Save Your Tears”.

Grammy winning, multi-platinum recording artist and international superstar, Ariana Grande, is the first artist to hold the top three Billboard Hot 100 spots since The Beatles in 1964with “7 Rings,” “Break Up With Your Girlfriend, I’m Bored,” and “Thank U, Next.”  In 2020, she became the first and only artist to have 5 singles debut at #1 in the charts history.

THE WEEKND DROPS “TAKE MY BREATH” SONG AND VIDEO

FIRST SINGLE FROM UPCOMING ALBUM TEASED DURING OLYMPICS PRIME TIME SHOW AS WELL AS ALBUM NEWS VIA WORLDWIDE GQ LAUNCH

Watch the visual HERE

The Weeknd releases his much anticipated single “Take My Breath”, the first from his forthcoming album as announced in his GQ global cover story this week. The sonically-charged track exemplifies The Weeknd’s ability to consistently evolve his sound and his knack for story-telling through his music. The release is accompanied by a mesmerizing visual directed byCliqua – Watch the video HERE. Listen to “Take My Breath” HERE.


The Weeknd teased new material with an array of tweets, culminating in an austere trailer he shared this past Sunday. By Monday morning, GQ debuted the first ever global issue in 90 years with The Weeknd as the sole cover star on all editions. In the accompanying interview with GQ, The Weeknd hinted at what listeners could anticipate with the upcoming record. On the same day, The Weeknd revealed a snippet of “Take My Breath”, along with the release date, in an Olympics promo teaser during NBC’s Olympics Prime Time Show telecast starring Team U.S.A’s women’s track and field team.

“Take My Breath” marks The Weeknd’s latest material since the release of his critically-acclaimed album After Hours released in March of 2020. After Hours is The Weeknd’s fourth #1 album in the United States and is certified double platinum by the RIAA with over 15.7 billion streams. In addition to the United States, After Hours topped the charts in 20 additional nations, including Canada and the United Kingdom.

“It’ll be the best project he’s ever put out.” – Mark Anthony Green on The Weeknd’s new music in the September 2021 issue of GQ

“‘It became nearly impossible to find something else to listen to. Everything else sounded soft. Or didn’t groove enough. Or felt too happy. Or too sad. It was clear to me that this isn’t just the album The Weeknd has always wanted to make; it’s the album we’ve always wanted him to make.” – Mark Anthony Green in GQ

“The music hit the studio like a Mack truck. The new project is packed with party records. Like real-deal, illuminated-white-tiles-on-the-floor party records. Quincy Jones meets Giorgio Moroder meets the best-night-of-your-fucking-life party records. Not anachronistic disco stuff. (Not “cosplay,” as Abel put it.) That sort of retro thing is having a moment right now in pop music, but these records are new. Sweaty. Hard. Drenched-suit, grinding-on-the-girl/boy-of-your-dreams party records.” – Mark Anthony Green in GQ

ABOUT REPUBLIC RECORDS

A division of Universal Music Group, the world’s leading music company, Republic Records is home to an all-star roster of multi-platinum, award-winning legends and superstar artists such as Ariana Grande, Black Thought, Drake, Florence + the Machine, Greta Van Fleet, Hailee Steinfeld, Jack Johnson, James Blake, James Bay, Jessie J, John Mellencamp, Jonas Brothers, Julia Michaels, Kid Cudi, Lil Wayne, Lorde, Metro Boomin, NAV, Nicki Minaj, Of Monsters and Men, Pearl Jam, Post Malone, Seth MacFarlane, Stevie Wonder, Taylor Swift, The Weeknd and more. Founded by brothers and chief executives Monte and Avery Lipman, it is also comprised of innovative business ventures, including American Recordings, Boominati Worldwide, Brushfire, Casablanca Records, Cash Money, Lava Records, XO, Young Money, among others. Republic also maintains a long-standing strategic alliance with Universal Music Latin Entertainment (J Balvin and Karol G).  In addition, Republic has expanded to release high-profile soundtracks for Universal Pictures (Fifty Shades of Grey), Sony Pictures (Spider-Man Into the Spider-Verse) and NBC TV (The Voice), as well as other notable film and television franchises. Extending further into the worlds of film, television, and content, Republic launched Federal Films in order to produce movies and series powered by the label’s catalog and artists. Its first production was the Jonas Brothers documentary Chasing Happiness for Amazon Prime Video.

ARIANA GRANDE MAKES HISTORY AS FIRST ARTIST TO HOLD THREE TOP 10 SPOTS ON BILLBOARD POP AIRPLAY & MEDIABASE TOP 40 CHARTS

“positions,” “34+35,” & “pov” CONTINUE TO DOMINATE AIRWAVES

Ariana Grande just made history again. The GRAMMY® Award-winning and record-breaking multiplatinum superstar has emerged as The First Artist To Simultaneously Land Three Songs in the Top 10 of the Billboard Pop Airplay Chart and The First Artist To Simultaneously Land Three Songs in the Top 10 of the Mediabase Top 40.  These entries include blockbuster singles “positions,” “34+35,” and “pov”—available on her 2020 album, Positions. Additionally, for a second consecutive week, Grande and The Weeknd currently hold the #1 Billboard Hot 100 spot with “Save Your Tears.”

The platinum Positions not only marked her fifth #1 debut on the Billboard 200, but it also closed out 2020 on over a dozen year-end lists, including The New York Time, Vogue, USA Today, The Los Angeles Times, Billboard, Complex, The Guardian, UPROXX, and more. It has tallied over 3 billion streams and counting thus far.

Artwork by Paul Gervais-8437-2

Paul Gervais – Faces and Forms

Leaning In to Reveal the Personal and the Imagined

On View through May 30 at the Boca Raton Museum of Art

 

The Museum premiere of these new paintings by Paul Gervais features portraits with a tenderness that urges the viewer to lean in closely, to really study them. All of the subjects in the portraits are personal, from the life he has shared for 46 years with his husband Gil, of whom there are several paintings. The exhibition is curated by Kathleen Goncharov, the Senior Curator of the Boca Raton Museum of Art. She chose to accompany the 14 portraits with a series of 13 paintings by Gervais of imagined objects. The exhibition is on view through May 30, and features an exclusive online conversation with Paul Gervais as part of the Museum’s Collectors Forum Series for Members. This virtual visit to the artist’s studio will also be made available free to the public later on, as part of the #BocaMuseumatHome series sponsored by Art Bridges Foundation and PNC.

“Whether real or imagined, all the paintings in this exhibition are a reflection of Gervais’s life and perceptions,” says Irvin Lippman, the Executive Director of the Boca Raton Museum of Art. “The intimate scale of these works forces the viewer to move in closer in order to see each painting’s fine details, and in the case of the portraits – to more closely read each subject’s personality,” adds Lippman.

Always Seeking the True Likeness

The artist was driven to explore portraiture for the first time by two events in early 2020 that left an indelible mark on Paul Gervais: after he saw the exhibition Lucian Freud: Self-Portraits at London’s Royal Academy of Arts; and after reading The Lives of Lucian Freud by William Feaver. “All of a sudden one day at home I came down to breakfast and there was my husband Gil, and it all clicked: in a flash I took his photo and rushed to my studio to paint my very first portrait,” says Gervais. The intimate, smaller scale of these paintings was inspired by Freud’s smaller works, especially Freud’s petite portrait of Queen Elizabeth. “To me, when I observe Lucian Freud’s body of work, his portraits come across as a kind of autobiography. When viewing them I feel as though I could fill in the blanks of his life, and the history of art in that place in time.”

Also an acclaimed author, his first novel was a finalist for the prestigious PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction in 1991. Presciently, the title of Gervais’s first book was Extraordinary People, foreshadowing his focus today on painting people who are extraordinary because they stand out in his life. “When I’m painting a portrait, I’m thinking about that person all the time. A true likeness is what I am looking for most of all,” says Gervais, who always paints his subjects from a photograph. “I prefer to catch them while they are in a reflective moment,” he says. “I don’t usually want them looking at the camera. I prefer they never pose nor aim to please, to show a more intimate look at the person.”

 

“The Abstracts are also a Portrayal of Something that is Me”

Although the forms referred to in the title of the exhibition are imaginary, they reflect Gervais’s sensibility and experience, and are closely linked to his portraits. Gervais refers to these forms and figures as “all-time, from throughout all cultures of human history.” These abstractions have personal relevance for Gervais, such as Sculpture and a Pool – an homage to David Hockney, who Gervais met when he was a student at the San Francisco Art Institute in the 1970s, when Hockney was a guest lecturer. Hockney became friends with Paul and Gil. He pictured the couple in one of his Composite Polaroid works during that period, and they have remained friends ever since.

 

“The abstracts are also very much a portrayal of something that is me,” says Gervais. Some are imagined interiors, such as the hybrid style of Enfilade, a cross between a minimalist home and a contemporary art gallery. In some of these interiors, Gervais includes depictions of paintings behind the forms as nods to iconic abstract expressionist works. In some of his other abstracts, Gervais projects tones inspired by 18th-century neo-classical colors. Others show forms with oxidized copper hues that give heed to the Statue of Liberty, with a horizon line of pale blue sky.

 

More About the Artist

The work of Paul Gervais is in the collections of several institutions, including: the Museum of the Legion of Honor in San Francisco; the Bank of America Collection; the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; and the Hall Collection in New York. In 1980, he earned his MFA from the San Francisco Art Institute. Gervais also earned a B.A. in English Literature at Saint Michael’s College in Vermont in 1969. At San Francisco State University, Gervais studied poetry with Robert Creeley and Phillip Lamantia.

His work has been exhibited in solo and group exhibitions throughout the U.S. and Europe, including: The Achenbach Foundation for Graphic Arts/The Museum of the Legion of Honor; Sunne Savage Gallery (Boston); Leah Levy Gallery (San Francisco); Fritz Gallery (Palm Beach); Bagni di Lucca Art Festival (Italy); and Gavlak Gallery (Palm Beach).

In addition to his literary success with the PEN/Faulkner Award Finalist nomination, other short fiction and articles by Gervais have been published in anthologies and periodicals including The Los Angeles Times. “My lifelong devotion to art, both visual art and writing, are my two passions. I believe that both art and writing come from the same place in the artist. They are just different disciplines,” says Paul Gervais.

Gervais met Gil Cohen in 1974, and the artist credits their shared life of more than four decades as being instrumental in his art. They now live in London and Palm Beach County. In 1982, the couple became internationally famous for the garden at their celebrated home in Lucca, Italy where they lived for 34 years before moving to London in 2016. The 60-acre estate, Villa Massei, was built in 1500 by the Counts Sinibaldi. Hundreds of garden lovers and botanical clubs visited their garden. It captured the attention of Prince Charles, who invited Paul and Gil to his Highgrove Royal Gardens. Many notables visited the garden and stayed at the villa, including: David Hockney; the Queen of Norway; Princess Maria Pia of Bourbon-Parma (the daughter of Italy’s last king); Hubert de Givenchy; James Lord; Edmund White; Kathleen Turner; and Michelle Phillips, among others. His book, A Garden in Lucca, is a personal memoir recalling the author’s journey of self-discovery after caring for the extensive garden.

Regarding this new pairing of his portraits alongside the paintings of imagined forms, Gervais states: “I am thrilled the Museum is showing them together, because they are linked. Faces and Forms takes a closer look at figuration in art. The abstract forms are positioned like actors on a stage, interacting with light and shadow and with each other. This show could be seen as people in my portraits contemplating the mysteries of abstraction, their faces surrounded by their inner artistic conundrums. Also, could this pairing be seen as an affirmation that all painting is simply portraiture, whatever the subject. This brings to mind a quote by Jamie Wyeth: Everything I paint is a portrait, whatever the subject.”

 

About the Boca Raton Museum of Art

Kicking off its eighth decade in 2021, the Boca Raton Museum of Art encompasses a creative campus that includes the Museum in Mizner Park and the Art School. As one of South Florida’s cultural landmarks, the Museum has provided cultural and artistic service to the community, and to many visitors from around the world, since it was founded by artists in 1950. Visit their website to enjoy the Museum’s current online content, including video tours and digital gallery guides. Support for #BocaMuseumatHome and #KeepKidsSmartwithArt virtual programming is provided by Art Bridges Foundation and PNC. Museum hours, admission prices and more visitor information available at the museum’s website.

Artwrk by Paul Gervais-8439-2

COVID 19 by Symara Wilson for 360 Magazine, Covid Travel restriction

Coronavirus Mutations × U.S. Travel Restrictions

By: Emily Bunn

A breaking news article featured in The New York Times announced that the United States will be imposing a mandatory requirement for negative COVID-19 test results from all incoming, international travelers. The requirement for proof of a negative test in order to fly will begin Tuesday, January 25th.

The CDC has ordered for all travelers to provide proof of a negative test taken no more than 3 days before their travels. Without documentation of a negative test or documentation of recovery supplemented with a letter from a health care provider or public health official, passengers will be prohibited to fly.

The United States is not the only country to be putting in place tighter travel regulations. Due to new mutations of the virus, many countries are adopting stricter border protocol. The New York Times reports:

“Even as the United States moved to impose travel restrictions, citing the danger of the fast-moving variants, a case of the variant spreading in Brazil was identified in Minnesota.”

Variations of the virus in Brazil and South Africa, due to international travel, both pose the threat of COVID-19 mutating. If the virus does mutate, it is potential that the new strain of such will be unreactive to current vaccination efforts.

The New York Times reports that Dr. Anthony S. Fauci, an adviser to President Biden, has commented: “With the world travel that you have, and the degree of transmissibility efficiency, it’s not surprising.” Further, President Biden has broadcasted a ban on travel by all non-citizens into the United States from South Africa, the U.K., Ireland, and 26 other European countries.

An article published today on AP News reported that in attempts to increase vaccination efforts, President Biden announced that his administration is planning to purchase 100 million doses of each of the approved coronavirus vaccines–Pfizer and Moderna. Vaccination deliveries to states will be surged for the next three weeks. The Biden administration has announced that they plan to vaccinate 300 million citizens by the end of summer, as reported by The New York Times.

The President, in a White House briefing on January 26th, commented on importance of increasing vaccination supplies to help Americans:

“And to a nation waiting for action, let me be clearest on this point: Help is on the way.  We can do this if we come together, if we listen to the scientists.”

These efforts come at an especially critical time, as the global number of coronavirus cases has surpassed 100 million, reports The Wall Street Journal. However, that has been recent speculation regarding the accuracy of that number. In New York, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo’s administration has been accused of undercounting the amount of coronavirus deaths that occurred at nursing homes. A report released by Letitia James, the Attorney General of New York, shows that the coronavirus death count appears to have been cut by approximately 50 percent. The report compares the number of facility deaths publicized by the Department of Health–1,229 deaths, versus the number of facility deaths reported the Office of Attorney General–1,914 deaths. This staggering discrepancy between reported deaths has spurred suspicion against Cuomo, and the Office of Attorney General (OAG) is conducting an on-going investigation concerning the cause of these variances.

However, there is still hope. In Los Angeles, Governor Gavin Newsom rescinded the county’s stay-at-home order this past Monday, reports The Los Angeles Times. This new jurisdiction will allow for all counties in California to return to the four-tier, colored-coded system of assessing coronavirus risk. Lifting the imposed stay-at-home order could allow for the reopening of personal care services and outdoor dining. While LA has been particularly hard hit by coronavirus, the city actually has a higher vaccination rate than most other comparable cities in the U.S. The New York Times reports that “83 percent of the doses the city has received have been administered, compared with 74 percent in New York City; 52 percent in Bexar County, which includes San Antonio; and 58 percent of the doses ordered in Maricopa County, which includes Phoenix.”

While the coronavirus situation is still being closely tracked and monitored, hospitalizations and the number of patients in ICUs have been steadily declining. With hospitalizations at their national lowest since December 13th and an increase in vaccination efforts, there is progress to be recognized, despite current setbacks and uncertainties.

Despite progress in vaccination efforts and decreasing corona virus cases, new virus mutations pose critical cause for concern. In countries across the Asia-Pacific region, a new, more infectious variant–the Delta variant–is causing stay-at-home orders to be again put into place. This new variant was first identified in India, and has quickly been spreading. As restrictions begin yet again, countries across the globe are grappling with the harrowing fate that the pandemic is far from over.

In some major Australian cities, such as Sydney, Brisbane, Perth, and Darwin, residents have been forced into strict lockdowns. Flights are even being banned due to the new threat, with Hong Kong barring British entry. Indefinite stay-at-home orders were extended by the Malaysian government on Monday. In Malaysia, the new variant is especially threatening, as only 6% of the country’s residents are fully vaccinated, reports the New York Times.

India has faced a devastating, major second wave of coronavirus due to the Delta Plus variant, a sub-lineage of the Delta variant. This past spring, the dangerous variant caused thousands of deaths per day, and forced residents into partial stay-at-home orders, yet again. Much like in Malaysia, in India only 5% of the population is fully vaccinated. In fear of a third wave of the virus, Maharashtra’s chief minister, Uddhav Balasaheb Thackeray, has authorized the use of a fourth vaccine in an attempt to increase vaccination supplies.

In good news, the Covid-19 vaccination is largely effective against the new Delta variant. However, this Delta variant is 50 percent more contagious than several of the other variants of concern, such as the Alpha variant.

As countries continue reopening, people look toward high vaccination rates to change the coronavirus game. In the U.S. and Britain, officials are planning to, or already have, lift most pandemic restrictions. White House secretary, Jen Psaki, recently announced that the United States would send two million doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine to Peru. Additionally, the U.S. looks to send 2.5 million doses of the Moderna vaccine to Pakistan. A third shipment of 1.5 million Moderna vaccination doses will be sent to Honduras from the United States.

Looking ahead to this weekend, July 30-Aug 1, 2021, the return of  a major musical festival threatens a super-spreader event. The highly infectious variant of COVID-19 has again created a surge in the number of recent coronavirus cases. As festival fans migrate to Chicago for Lollapalooza – the first of which held since 2019 – the Windy City braces for the potentially devastating impact.

Fortunately, the festival is taking several precautions to prevent the spread of the virus. All attendees must be fully vaccinated or show proof of a negative COVID-19 test taken within 72 hours of event entry. However, the Better Business Bureau (BBB) warns that not all guests will be honest about meeting these requirements.

The head of the BBB, Steve Bernas, warns of the potential for festival scammers who fabricate fake vaccine cards and negative test results. “We anticipate a double whammy this year not only the tickets but also the vaccine cards,” Bernas said in a statement. “The scammers will be out in full force.” He continues, cautioning ticket buyers to be on high-alert: “Just like finding tickets, there are countless ways for consumers to find vaccinations cards online, with online marketplaces, ticket sellers, resellers and the like…and unfortunately, some of them are rip-offs”

One of Chicago’s top coronavirus experts, Dr. Emily Landon, also weighed in on the weekend’s festivities. She argues that Lollapalooza’s 72-hour testing window is too lenient, and that the city is inviting in a massive spike of cases by holding the concert. NBC Chicago reports that Dr. Emily Landon commented, “Lolla has let us down with respect to how vigorously they’re restricting people based on the things that they sort of initially told us (about how) ‘we’re going to be really strict’ and now it’s like they’ve lightened up quite considerably on checking vaccines and negative tests.”

Chicago Department of Public Health Commissioner Dr. Allison Arwady expressed concerns similar to Dr. Emily Landon’s. Recognizing the importance of getting vaccinated, she commented the following in a coronavirus update last week: “We want people to have a good time and we want this to be as safe as it can be…And so certainly we’ll be watching that just as we do any other gathering, but I am more concerned about the many people who have not chosen the COVID vaccine.”

Still, Chicago’s mayor and top doctor still haven’t wavered their support for the much-loved music festival. Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot expressed her desire the event to occur as safely as possible, though she didn’t comment on the recent uptick in case numbers and coronavirus hospitalizations. NBC 5 Chicago reports on the current coronavirus statistics in the city:

“Chicago’s average daily number of new cases rose to 130 per day early Monday – a 76% jump compared to last week. The city’s average daily case rate was at 90 per day last week and 41 per day the week before that, meaning it’s more than tripled in roughly three weeks. However, it is still significantly lower than the more than 700 cases per day the city was seeing earlier this year and last, before vaccines were widely available.”

Additional safety measures, including mandatory mask-wearing on public transport, will also be enforced. The Chicago Transit Authority is offering reduced ticket rates this weekend for Lollapalooza travelers.

As Summer winds down, COVID-19 cases are beginning to rise yet again. Several virus variants, including the new Lambda variant, are causing major concern among Americans. In an attempt to quell concern, several cities have launched vaccine passport programs.

Across the United States, metropolitan hubs including New York, San Francisco, and New Orleans are requiring residents to show proof of vaccination before entering indoor spaces. That means that visiting gyms, concerts, restaurants, and more will require citizens to have both of their required vaccination shots. Vaccine passports are not being put in place to stop public gatherings, but are intended to creater safer enviroments outside of one’s home.

However, many Americans are opting to stay indoors yet again, thanks to new variant threats. The Lambda variant, which was first detected in Peru and is quckly spreading through South America, is causing concern among citizens. The New York Times reports that “On June 14, the World Health Organization designated it as a “variant of interest,” meaning, essentially, that experts suspect it could be more dangerous than the original strain.

However, it has been reported that the Lambda variant is likely not as contagious as other deadly virus mutuations, like the Delta variant. And fortunately, the Lambda variant is able to be combatted by the vaccines that have currently rolled out across the U.S. The New York Times records the climbing numbers of the Lambda variant, “As of mid-June, Lambda had been reported in 29 countries, territories or areas, according to a June 15 update from the W.H.O. The variant had been detected in 81 percent of coronavirus samples sequenced in Peru since April, and 31 percent of those in Chile to date, the agency said.” However, assessing the virus has been difficult due to Latin America’s limited ability to conduct geonomic surveillance and follow-up laboratory studies, reports the NYT. Scientists and medical professionals around the world are currently conducting research to better understand this new variant and its implications.

HotelPlanner’s Delta Variant Coverage:

America’s comeback is in jeopardy. The Delta variant is surging, prompting concerns that we need another lockdown. Travel executives are already huddling, discussing potential next steps to both protect guests and their businesses’ bottom lines. Americans were traveling in record numbers, and people are wondering if this could slow down the sector. How could the Delta variant, and other emerging variants, impact travel?

“We are watching the rapid uptick in Delta variant case infections closely, says Tim Hentschel, Co-Founder and CEO of HotelPlanner. “Although some families may choose to curtail their summer travel plans, we remain confident that the vast majority of Americans who were planning to travel this summer will keep their plans, while exercising more caution with crowds and destination selection. For those who are already vaccinated, the Delta variant shouldn’t be a deterrent to summer travel because they should be protected.”

ABOUT HOTELPLANNER

HotelPlanner is a leading travel technology company that combines proprietary artificial intelligence and machine learning capabilities, and a 24/7 global gig-based reservations and customer service network, to quickly and seamlessly serve all traveler hotel & accommodation needs from a single platform.

HotelPlanner is one of the world’s top providers of individual, group, and corporate travel bookings, specializing in unique “Closed User Group” discount rates.

Founded in 2004, HotelPlanner has enduring partnerships with the world’s largest Online Travel Agencies, well-known hotel chains, individual hotels, online wedding providers, ancillary lodging providers, corporations, sports franchises, universities, and government agencies.

Randall Bell x “Me We Do Be”

Why do some people dive, some survive and others thrive? The answer, Randall Bell, Ph.D., reveals, is surprisingly simple: choices. 

 

Bell, a socio-economist and the CEO of Landmark Research Group, has developed an easy-to-follow formula for authentic growth and success based upon 25 years of behavioral research. 

 

In his book, Me We Do Be: The Four Cornerstones of Success, Bell masterfully interweaves stories from his consulting work on high-profile cases — including Chernobyl, the World Trade Center, and O.J. Simpson — with findings from behavioral studies and his own survey of 5,000 people to reveal the daily habits that can make or break both personal and professional growth and success. 

 

In Me We Do Be, Bell explains that all behaviors can be organized into four cornerstones: 

•    Me is quality thinking that builds wisdom.

•    We habits form quality relationships. 

•    Do actions build productivity.

•    Be designs the future. 

 

There is no one-size-fits-all definition of success. For some, it’s making money. For others it’s having a loving family, winning a competition, completing a degree or beating cancer. The power of Me We Do Be is that it connects all the dots and creates a fresh perspective for moving forward, allowing readers to define what success means to them as individuals, while sharing the foundational elements that apply to everyone. 

 

Previously, the author led a national practice at PricewaterhouseCoopers, the world’s largest consulting firm. He has consulted on hundreds of cases, including the Flight 93 Crash Site, the BP Oil Spill, Hurricane Katrina and the nuclear testing at Bikini Atoll. 

 

Often a guest of the media, Bell has been profiled in The Wall Street Journal, People magazine, The New York Times, the Chicago Tribune, the Los Angeles Times, CNN, World News Tonight with Diane Sawyer, 20/20, Entertainment Tonight and by newscasters on every major television network. 

 

Please see Dr. Bell in a recent appearance on The Today Show.

 

Robert G. Allen, New York Times Best-Selling Author of Creating Wealth: “A fascinating blend of personal anecdotes from Dr. Bell’s vast professional experience interspersed with powerful quotes, insights and a timeless list of valuable habits designed to improve any life. There are many golden nuggets in here.” 

 

Jeffrey W. Hayzlett, New York Times Best-Selling Author of The Mirror Test: “Some think that complex problems require complex solutions. This is not always true. The four cornerstones of Me We Do Be are a simple, effective way to ignite passion in any life or business!”

 

Steve Alten, New York Times Best-Selling Author: “Eye-opening … Randall Bell’s Me We Do Be is as inspiring as Napoleon Hill’s classic Think and Grow Rich.” 

 

Bob Proctor, Best-Selling Author of You Were Born Rich: “Me We Do Be shows how the little things we do can have a dramatic impact on our quality of life; it’s that one small adjustment that can make the difference between winning and losing. Read, learn and act on the great information provided in this book.” 

 

For more information on Randall Bell and his motivational book, please visit the website: www.drbell.com.

 

Available online and at fine bookstores everywhere.

Hey Violet × “Hoodie” 

HEY VIOLET RELEASE “HOODIE” FEATURING AYO & TEO TODAY 

DEBUT ALBUM FROM THE OUTSIDE OUT NOW 
 
Hey Violet’s ‘From the Outside,’ (is) one of this year’s best and most provocative pop albums.” – The New York Times

 

Today, Hey Violet release “Hoodie” featuring Ayo & Teo. The song is available for download and streaming at all digital partners, HERE. The track marks the first time Hey Violet has collaborated with another artist, teaming up with self-taught dancers and rap duo Ayo & Teo, best known for their viral hit “Rolex.” The pair have garnered millions of views via social media as well as the recognition of various celebrities. LISTEN HERE.

 

The band’s debut album From The Outside is out now on Hi or Hey Records/Capitol/Caroline- the album hit #1 on the iTunes Pop Chart and is available via all digital retailers. The band co wrote songs on the album which was produced by Julian Bunetta. The New York Times declares it’s “one of this year’s best and most provocative pop albums,” and Stereogum says,

“Hey Violet have a very strong album to show for their efforts – one that, like its provocative lead single, (‘Guys My Age,’) stakes out its territory and demands a reaction,”while Nylon raves, “I challenge you to find a debut album as explosive and technicolored as ‘From The Outside.’ With ’80s-tinged synths and enough sub bass to scratch the little EDM itch we all have, (the album) pulses with cheeky hooks and middle fingers to the status quo. Lead singer Rena Lovelis’ voice is arena-shaking. You’re in for one hell of a ride.”

 

In the past year, the L.A.-based band have proven the power of their immaculately crafted alt-pop. Their recent track “Break My Heart,” has racked up over 10 million combined streams. 

Idolator says “Break My Heart” is a “monstrous electro-anthem” and declares, the band is “destined to have a massive year,” and Alternative Press calls the track “irresistible.” The song is the follow-up to Hey Violet’s smash single”Guys My Age,” which has more than 50 million combined streams, while the video is approaching 20 million views. The band recently wrapped up a sold out North American headline tour, graced the March cover of Alternative Press, and performed “Guys My Age” on both The Late Late Show With James Corden and Late Night With Seth Meyers. Hey Violet’s Brand New Moves EP debuted as the #1 album on iTunes in the U.S., and U.K. The Los Angeles Times compared their move “from grimy punk to shiny pop” to the Go-Go’s, while Galore declared front woman Rena Lovelis, “emits an unheard of level of rock-stardom for such a small girl without even singing a single note. But when she does sing, it’s as if Courtney Love, Gwen Stefani, and Hayley Williams crashed into each other and made a whole new generation of rock star.” Hey Violet is Rena Lovelis, her sister Nia Lovelis (drums), Casey Moreta (lead guitar) and Iain Shipp (bass). 

 

For more on Hey Violet:

Website / Facebook / Instagram / Twitter

HEY VIOLET PREMIERE THE VIDEO FOR NEW SINGLE  + “HOODIE” +  TODAY ON VEVO

“Hey Violet’s ‘From the Outside,’ (is) one of this year’s best and most provocative pop albums.” – The New York Times

Hey Violet premiere the video for their new single “Hoodie” today- watch it HERE. Directed by Jessie Hill, (Chris Cornell, Broods, Zella Day) the video was filmed in Los Angeles. “This is video is visually completely different from our other music videos so far,” says front woman Rena Lovelis. “We wanted to give it an air of indie movie vibes and used projections to symbolize the memories and show the loneliness conveyed through the lyrics.”    

The band’s debut album From The Outside is out now on Hi or Hey Records/Capitol/Caroline- the album hit #1 on the iTunes Pop Chart and is available via all digital retailers. The band co-wrote songs on the album which was produced by Julian Bunetta. The New York Times declares it’s “one of this year’s best and most provocative pop albums,” and Stereogum says, “Hey Violet have a very strong album to show for their efforts – one that, like its provocative lead single, (‘Guys My Age,’) stakes out its territory and demands a reaction,”while Nylon raves, “I challenge you to find a debut album as explosive and technicolored as ‘From The Outside.’ With ’80s-tinged synths and enough sub bass to scratch the little EDM itch we all have, (the album) pulses with cheeky hooks and middle fingers to the status quo. Lead singer Rena Lovelis’ voice is arena-shaking. You’re in for one hell of a ride.” Hey Violet is also nominated for a 2017 Teen Choice Award for Choice Song: Group for “Guys My Age” and will headline Teen Fest 2017 at Teen Choice 2017 LIVE Sunday, Aug. 13 (8:00-10:00 PM ET/live PT tape-delayed) from University of Southern California’s Galen Center on FOX.

In the past year, the L.A.-based five-piece have proven the power of their immaculately crafted alt-pop. Their recent track “Break My Heart,” has racked up almost 10 million combined streams. Idolator says “Break My Heart” is a “monstrous electro-anthem” and declares, the band is “destined to have a massive year,” and Alternative Press calls the track “irresistible.” The song is the follow-up to Hey Violet’s smash single”Guys My Age,” which has more than 46 million combined streams, while the video is approaching over 16 million views. The band recently wrapped up a sold out North American headline tour, graced the March cover of Alternative Press, and performed “Guys My Age” on both The Late Late Show With James Corden and Late Night With Seth Meyers. Hey Violet’s Brand New Moves EP debuted as the #1 album on iTunes in the U.S., and U.K. The Los Angeles Times compared their move “from grimy punk to shiny pop” to the Go-Go’s, while Galore declared front woman Rena Lovelis, “emits an unheard of level of rock-stardom for such a small girl without even singing a single note. But when she does sing, it’s as if Courtney Love, Gwen Stefani, and Hayley Williams crashed into each other and made a whole new generation of rock star.” Hey Violet is Rena Lovelis,her sister Nia Lovelis (drums), Miranda Miller (keys, vocals), Casey Moreta (lead guitar) and Iain Shipp (bass).

For more on Hey Violet:

Website / Facebook / Instagram / Twitter

http://heyviolet.lnk.to/FromTheOutside