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April 26, 2015

White Reservation: The Justification of Breath and Those Who Take It Away

My day ended with news of a Michael Brown memorial tree being chopped down in less than a day of it being planted. Amidst the maelstrom and versions of justice, it's hard to breathe when even the process of photosynthesis is being interrupted.

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Black Music Notes Oct. 7

    10/7/09: Mariah Carey
    Mariah Carey's new album 'Memoirs of an Imperfect Angel' debuted in #3 position on the Billboard Top 200 Album chart, selling only 167, 912 copies in its first week of release. Surprisingly, 67-year-old Barbra Streisand bagged the top spot -- selling 180,415 copies of her latest covers collection, 'Love is the Answer.' Also keeping Carey away from being numero uno; rock band Paramore, which opened at #2 with their new album 'Brand New Eyes,' with sales of 175,112.

    Getty Images

    10/5/09: Meshell Ndegeocello
    This week, Meshell Ndegeocelloreleases her latest album, 'Devil's Halo,' and officially kicks off a promotional tour at New York City hot-spot, Highline Balroom. The three week club tour will have the rock & soul wunderkind performing in major cities across the country -- including Chicago, Los Angeles and Minneapolis -- before her final show Oct. 28 in Bellingham, Washington. All tour dates will include Meshell's full band, featuring guitarist Chris Bruce, bassist Mark Kelley, keyboardist Keefus Ciancia and drummer Deantoni Parks.

    Mark Seliger for Downtown Music

    10/2/09: Mary J, Stevie Wonder, Jennifer Hudson:
    Mary J. Blige, Stevie Wonder, and Jennifer Hudson are among the artists featured on Rod Stewart's forthcoming project titled 'Soulbook.' The J Records release captures the Grammy Award-winning Rock and Roll Hall of Famer covering a collection of classic soul favorites, including the Stylistics timeless classic 'You Make Me Feel Brand New.' "This is the album I've waited my whole lifetime to record," Stewart stated. 'Soulbook' hits stores and digital retailers Oct. 27.

    Getty Images

    10/2/09: 50 Cent/T.I.:
    To capitalize off of its recent batch of 'Behind the Music' segments, VH1 has finally decided to take an introspective look at the careers of 50 Cent and T.I. The two multi-platinum rappers will be showcased in the network's long running series in the coming weeks, which will cover their rise to fame. From T.I. describing the pros and cons of being a hip-hop superstar to Fifty detailing his success as an international mogul. 'Behind the Music: T.I.' premieres Oct. 8 at 10 pm/et, while 'Behind the Music: 50 Cent' airs Oct. 13 at 8 pm/et.

    Getty Images

    10/2/09: Bootsy Collins, Teena Marie:
    Beginning Nov. 1, TV One returns with all new episodes of their critically-acclaimed original biography series, 'Unsung.' The Gary Anthony Williams-narrated show, which examines and celebrates talented artists who are under-appreciated, will showcase Teena Marie, Bootsy Collins, Roger Troutman & Zapp, and Klymaxx in its third installment. 'Unsung: Teena Marie' premieres Nov. 1 at 8 pm/et followed by an encore at 11 pm/et.

    Getty Images

    10/2/09: Akon:
    International superstar Akon is showing support for breast cancer awareness month this weekend with his headlining performance at the Think Pink Rocks concert on Oct. 3. Hosted by BET's Terrence and Rocsi, the star-studded charity benefit will also include performances by Canadian R&B songstress Melanie Fiona, Shontelle, and pop reggae trio American Yard. According to an event spokesperson, all proceeds will go to breast cancer charities and research.

    Getty Images

    10/2/09: Pretty Ricky:
    Following a controversial viral video clip from one of its most known members earlier this year, R&B group Pretty Ricky will finally release their third album, aptly titled 'Pretty Ricky.' The chart-topping group, which features Spectacular, Diamond Blue, Slick'Em, and their newest buddy/addition Lingerie, feels their Nov. 17 release is too good to explain. "The songs are too sensual to describe in words," says Diamond. "You have to hear it to fully grasp the erotic experience of the records." The group's new lead single, 'Tipsy In This Club,' received a mixed response over the summer when Spectacular debuted the track via his eye-brow raising YouTube clip.

    Getty Images

    9/28/09: Tupac Shakur/Martin Luther King Jr.
    Late rap legend Tupac Shakur may be deceased, but he's still in great company. His mother Afeni Shakur has donated a collection of his writing to the Robert W. Woodruff Library at Atlanta University Center. The library also houses The Martin Luther King Jr. Collection. More than 150 of his personal items, ranging from rough drafts of lyrics and poems to a photocopy of his contract with Suge Knight and Death Row Records were given. The records are expected to be available for research in the fall of 2010.

    Getty Images, Corbis

    9/28/09: Ruben Studdard
    Former 'American Idol' winner Ruben Studdard is heating up the airwaves with his latest single, 'Don't Make 'Em Like U No More.' The single, which is described as a "sleek and soulful R&B ode to everyone's special someone," is featured on the Grammy Award-nominated crooner's current album, 'Love Is.' In addition, Studdard will join Philip Bailey (of Earth, Wind & Fire) and Deborah Cox, among others, on Oct. 21 for the "David Foster and Friends Tour." The trek kicks off in Chicago and concludes on Nov. 8 in Vancouver.

    Getty Images

    9/28/09: Angie Stone
    R&B diva Angie Stone is ready to hit fans with some surprising stuff! On Nov. 24, the brown-skin soul sister will release her second project, titled 'Unexpected,' on legendary label Stax Records. According to Stone, the album's title is a reflection of the direction that she took in recording the opus. "This album is something that no one would have anticipated coming from me," she said. "My father always encouraged me and everyone else he knew to reach out and make a leap of faith, and that's exactly what I've done." 'Unexpected' features the lead single 'I Ain't Hearin' U' and the poignant ballad 'Think Sometimes.'

    Getty Images

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