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January 26, 2015

Dedicated 'Humans Of New York' Fans Raise Money To Send Underserved Kids On Harvard Visit

School
Let's Send Kids to Harvard/Indiegogo

Baltimore Ravens Release Terrence Cody Amid Animal Cruelty Allegations

Terrence Cody
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Ben Carson Wouldn't Support Obamacare 'Even If It Worked'

Ben Carson
Scott Olson via Getty Images

New Classics Every Child Should Own

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Inti St Clair via Getty Images

North Carolina Man Exonerated Of 1976 Conviction

Joseph Sledge
Raleigh News & Observer via Getty Images

5 Real Ways to Actually Support Black-Owned Businesses

6 Best Montreal Spots

Proof More Women And Minorities Should Take On STEM

Camille Eddy
KTVB

Police Launch Investigation After Video Appears To Show Cop Shoving Man In Wheelchair Into Street

Bofrierson
cop logic via Youtube

One Suit Dropped, One Still Pending Between MLK's Children

Bernice King Martin Luther King Iii
Getty

New Orleans' Lower Ninth Ward Targeted For Gentrification

New Orleans Ninth Ward
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Diversity in the Classroom: How to Solve the Black Male Teacher Shortage

Black Teacher
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McDonald's Has Another Fight On Its Hands

Mcdonalds
Justin Sullivan via Getty Images

The Harrowing Story Of One Man's Escape From The Genocide In Burundi

Burundi
Escape From Burundi

Campaigners Call For State Investigation Into Fatal New Jersey Police Shooting

Jerame Reid
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Violence Against Black Transgender Women Goes Largely Ignored

Black Woman Violence
Hans Neleman via Getty Images

Bill O'Reilly Says Ferguson Protesters 'Should Be Ashamed'

Oreilly Protesters
Fox News

University Of Chicago President: 'Chicago's A Better Place' For The Obama Library Than Columbia

Zimmer
HuffPost Live

A Tale Of Two Movements

Abortion Rally
ASSOCIATED PRESS

The 9 Best Things That Happened When YouTube Stars Interviewed Obama

Seflie
YouTube

Showcasing Her Natural Hair Got This Meteorologist Fired

Rhonda Lee
HuffPost Live

'Light Girls' Producer Stephanie Frederic On Healing From Colorism

Stephanie Frederic
Stephanie Frederic

This Protest Song Captures The Power Of #BlackLivesMatter Demonstrations

Sidewalk 2
Sidewalk Chalk/YouTube

'Defy Hollywood, See Selma'

Ava Duvernay
Paras Griffin via Getty Images

College Student Likely Died From Chewing Gum In Her Sleep

Shanice Clark
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Al Sharpton Pokes Fun At Infamous Teleprompter Flub

Sharptom Teleprompter
MSNBC

Video Shows Man Raising His Hands As He's Gunned Down By Police

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NJ.com

New ‘Hands Up' Shooting Is Anything But Black And White

Jerame Reid
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Bill Gates Makes Bold Bet About Poverty, And Tech Plays A Big Role

Bill Gates Smiling
NBC NewsWire via Getty Images

'Black Lives Matter' Protesters Interrupt Capitol Hill Lunch

Capitol Protest
Christine Conetta/Huffington Post

Barry Levinson Blames Hollywood's Diversity Problem On Our Education System

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HuffPost Live

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Oregon 1930
MPI via Getty Images

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State Of The Union
ap

With a Book You Are Never Alone

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Bisila Bokoko

Jay Leno On Bill Cosby Allegations: 'I Don't Know Why It's So Hard To Believe Women'

Jay Leno
Aaron Davidson via Getty Images

Arkansas Bill Would Remove Robert E. Lee From MLK Day

Mlk
Getty

New Looting Footage From Ferguson Grand Jury Aftermath

Dellwood Looting
St. Louis County Police

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Viola Davis' Natural Hair Is Her Crowning Glory

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Lester Cohen via Getty Images

Rihanna Just Dropped A New Song With Kanye & Paul McCartney

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#CurlPower Encourages Women To Put Down The Flat Iron

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Tia Mowry Is Our New Favorite Style Star

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Stevie Wonder Set To Produce An Underground Railroad Miniseries

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Let Jennifer Aniston & David Oyelowo Show You How To Handle A Snub With Grace

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Flavor Flav Pleads Not Guilty

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Kevin Costner Hopes His New Movie Redefines How People Think About Race

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Listen To This NKOTB/TLC/Nelly Mashup Ahead Of Joint Tour

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Simone Honors Her Mother Nina Simone With A New Website

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This year on Mother's Day, Simone, the daughter of singer Nina Simone, will pay tribute to the woman who raised her with a gift for not only her mother, but her mother's fans as well. Simone -- the late singer's only child, born Lisa Celeste Stroud (pictured as a child with her mother) -- is re-launching NinaSimone.com with a new design and a deep trove of content, including unreleased songs, video performances and "Nina Simone Radio," a 24-7 Internet radio station that will provide hundreds of recordings, interviews and guest commentary.

As the executor of her mother's estate, Simone has owned the rights to NinaSimone.com for over a year, but only began preparations for a re-launch about six months ago. "As her only child, I have a unique vision compared to anyone else walking this earth," Simone says. "So a lot of what we're bringing to the site is from my perspective."

Simone, 48, describes the relationship with her mother as "many things." She says, "I didn't even know who Nina Simone was until I was around 11 or 12 years old, then I was able to make the distinction that she was someone else to the world." Simone went on to work in civil engineering for the United States Air Force, but at 28 decided she wanted to follow in her mother's footsteps. The elder Simone was not sure her daughter was ready. "She said to me, 'They're going to expect you to sing protest songs,'" Simone recalls. "I said, 'Well, then I'll sing your songs.' So she realized I was committed to it."

And Simone is committed to and invested in clearing up whatever mistruths may exist out there about her mother. "As with any great figure there are rumors, there's gossip, there's assumptions, and I can't correct everything," Simone says. "But what I can do is make sure I have somewhere people can go to that they know when they hear something or see something that this is the truth and it's not going to change."


Never quite as popular when she was alive to perform and record it as it has been since her passing in 2003, Nina Simone's music has long been beloved and respected. A pianist first, Nina Simone's voice took the spotlight at many of her early shows where she was told in auditions that if she wanted the gig she would have to both play piano and sing. Her 1959 cover of George Gershwin's 'I Loves You Porgy' was her only Top 40 hit, going as high as number 20 on the 'Billboard' charts, but her cult-like following was garnered largely through her affinity for protest songs during the civil rights era.

Nina Simone's 1969 hit single, 'To Be Young, Gifted, and Black,' the title of which she borrowed from her close friend playwright Lorraine Hansberry, inspired many artists to do their own renditions, including Donny Hathaway and Aretha Franklin. In more recent years, hip-hop artists have created song using samples of her work. 'Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood' was a sample used on both Common's 2007 album 'Finding Forever' ('Misunderstood') and Lil Wayne's 2008 album, 'Tha Carter III' ('Don't Get It').

In addition to the re-launch of NinaSimone.com, daughter Simone is also producing a double album of her mother's music to be released next year, as well as a follow up to her own 'Simone on Simone' released last year. Simone says many of her mother's fans never knew Nina Simone ever had a daughter, a disconnect she seems to have accepted. On a recent trip to Finland, where she was performing alongside singer Bobby McFerrin, Simone recalls McFerrin saying he wasn't aware of who she was. "I said to him, 'I get that all the time.'"

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