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Michelle Obama Wins Grammy Award For Audio Recording Of ‘Becoming’ Memoir | HuffPost

Fans are hoping the former first lady will go on to become an EGOT. Michelle Obama is now a Grammy winner. The former first lady took home the trophy in the Spoken Word Album category for the audio recording of her bestselling 2018 memoir “Becoming.” The Grammys’ Best Spoken Word Album award honors achievements in poetry readings, audiobooks and storytelling. In addition to Obama, nominees included members of the Beastie Boys, actor John Waters, producer Eric Alexandrakis and poet Sekou Andrews. Obama wasn’t at Sunday’s ceremony to collect her award, but Esperanza Spalding, who who won this year’s Grammy for […]

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America’s Black Holocaust Museum Hopes To Reopen Its Doors This Year | Wisconsin Public Radio

Thanks To A Donation, The Museum Plans To Open In Summer 2020 America’s Black Holocaust Museum (ABHM) in Milwaukee is a step closer to reopening its doors after being closed for over a decade, thanks to funding from the Greater Milwaukee Foundation. The museum was founded by lynching survivor, James Cameron in 1988. It is a memorial that promotes racial repair and reconciliation while shining a light on the African American experience. The museum closed in 2008, two years after Cameron died. Ground was broken for the new physical site of America’s Black Holocaust Museum in 2017, but they struggled […]

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‘I believe in white supremacy’: John Wayne’s notorious 1971 Playboy interview goes viral on Twitter (2019) | The Washington Post

John Wayne is never going to be confused for a progressive by anyone familiar with his life and career. The actor was famous as one of Hollywood’s staunchest conservatives: a onetime member of the reactionary anti-Communist John Birch Society, a producer for and actor in a film about the ignominious House Un-American Activities Committee and a vocal supporter of the Vietnam War after much of the public had turned against it. But this week snippets of an old interview he did with Playboy magazine, in which he expressed racist and homophobic sentiments and railed against socialism, began circulating on Twitter. […]

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Jimmy Heath, 93, Jazz Saxophonist and Composer, Is Dead | The New York Times

Jimmy Heath, a tenor saxophonist whose sharp and lively compositions became part of the midcentury jazz canon — and who found new prominence in middle age as a co-leader of a popular band with his two brothers — died on Sunday at his home in Loganville, Ga. He was 93. His grandson Fa Mtume confirmed his death. Mr. Heath’s saxophone sound was spare but playful, with a beaming tone that exuded both joy and command. But his reputation rested equally on his abilities as a composer and arranger for large ensembles, interpolating bebop’s crosshatched rhythms and extended improvisations into lush […]

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African Fabrics Connect to Form Quilted Portraits of Black Figures by Bisa Butler | Colossal

Brooklyn-based artist Bisa Butler (previously) uses brightly colored cotton, wool, and chiffon fabrics with bold patterns to piece together quilts featuring detailed portraits of Black people. The materials and themes connect American subjects with their African roots and tell visual stories of history and culture. Butler is a New Jersey-born African American artist with Ghanian heritage. A closer look at her portraits reveals intricate mosaics of shapes and patterns and complex multi-hued skin tones. For her James Baldwin-inspired piece “I Am Not Your Negro,” Butler created a portrait of a man seated in a pose similar to Rodin’s “Thinker” and […]

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Heard but Not Seen | Slate

Black music in white spaces. . Away from home, I walk into unfamiliar spaces with my shoulders hunched and tight. Instinctively, I scan my surroundings, stretching every sense around the corners of the room until it feels safe. What the eye see? What the ears hear? What the nose smell? It’s Sunday afternoon and Toups South, a restaurant serving “regional southern cuisine” in the Lower Garden District of New Orleans, is mostly empty. A handful of patrons sit at the bar and at a smattering of tables. Everyone’s white: the patrons, the hostess, the bartenders. In the open kitchen I […]

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Program Teaches Prisoners How to Code So They Can Get Tech Jobs Once Released | BlackNews.com

San Francisco, CA — The Last Mile, a prison rehabilitation program based in San Quentin, California, offers prisoners free training on how to code. This equips them with the training they need to get a job more easily once they are out of prison. “At The Last Mile, we are using technology to try and solve mass incarceration,” Jason Jones, a software engineer who teaches computer coding to prisoners through remote communication, told The Denver Channel. Those who finished the program, once released from prison, will be connected with tech companies such as Slack, Facebook, and even Google. Staff, BlackNews.com […]

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The Story of Josiah Henson, the Real Inspiration for ‘Uncle Tom’s Cabin’ | Smithsonian Magazine

Before there was the novel by Harriet Beecher Stowe, a formerly enslaved African-American living in Canada wrote a memoir detailing his experience. From its very first moments in print on March 20, 1852, Harriet Beecher Stowe’s Uncle Tom’s Cabin was a smashing success. It sold 3,000 copies on its first day, and Frederick Douglass reported that 5,000 copies—the entire first print run—were purchased within four days. By May 3, the Boston Morning Post declared that “everybody has read it, is reading, or is about to read it.” According to reports at the time, it took 17 printing presses running around […]

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Ofentse Pitse, first black South African woman to own and conduct an all-black orchestra | Face2Face Africa

With little formal training in music, Ofentse Pitse is the first female black South African to own and conduct the first all-black orchestra (Anchored sound). Many music maestros start playing instruments from a tender age but Pitse’s first experience with an instrument was at age 12. She picked up on the skills from mentors instead. “My teaching was unconventional; nothing was on paper. The furthest I went in music was grade three or grade four and everything else was basically mentoring. “Early this year, I reached out to two of the best conductors, one being Mr Thami Zungu, the head […]

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Danielle Johnson Will Launch the First Black Woman-owned Digital Radio Station in Boston | Black Enterprise

People of color in the media industry face many challenges when trying to get their foot in the door. There is a certain way that you must look, carry yourself, and speak. In fact, everything from appearance to professional nature can be found in many media professionals contracts when working for major publications and outlets. And, a number of those clauses coupled with barriers to entry keep many people seeking to enter the industry out. That is why Boston-based radio personality Danielle Johnson founded Spark FM. After applying for countless positions with big-name broadcast companies and not being hired, Johnson […]

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