July 12, 2012

 

ARIES

Can you take a week off from work? It’s a perfect week to relax with a loved one in one of your favorite ways. Even if you can only spend a few hours decompressing you’ll be surprised at how little it takes to feel bliss this week. Soul Affirmation: I let the outer world and inner world change places this week

 

TAURUS

Vibrations this week make everyone feel as if the universe has given them another chance. Your fresh start may come in a romantic area. Buy a bouquet of flowers for your partner on your way home from work. See what happens. Soul Affirmation: I celebrate freedom of mind this week.

 

GEMINI

A short trip for business reasons gives you a little personal space to make some notes to yourself. Remember your best self, and keep a positive outlook. Buy a lottery ticket this week at your destination, or watch for some other type of “found” money. Soul Affirmation: I judge no one, especially myself this week.

 

CANCER

Your home may need some of your attention. This is a fine week to check the fire alarm battery, put away gardening equipment, or redecorate your dining area. The results of a shopping trip for new bed linens will please you very much. Soul Affirmation: I keep my smile shining, especially at home.

 

LEO

Spend some time in the company of friends early in the week, then spend your afternoon relaxing. Your ability to tune out and mediate on the goodness that surrounds is comes easy. Let the good vibrations massage you with bliss. Soul Affirmation: I let positive emotions carry me through the week.

 

VIRGO

An unexpected clash may arise this week from an unlikely area. Try to maintain a position as mediator, rather than joining the fray. Loyalties may be stretched, but they won’t break. What you need is within you. Go there and get it. Soul Affirmation: My spirit will fill me with gladness.

 

LIBRA

Co-workers or customers may be grumpy this week. Don’t take it personally. Dwell in your peaceful inner space and the space around you will reflect the peaceful vibrations. Soul Affirmation: Jewelry reflects the beauty of my feelings about myself.

 

SCORPIO

You feel centered this week and full of efficient energy. Use this week to accomplish tasks, make plans, and finalize arrangements that need to be made. Face into personal responsibilities with love and pleasure now. Soul Affirmation: I enjoy discovering new territory this week.

 

SAGITTARIUS

You can build a bridge with your imagination to reach the person you want to meet. Build the very best bridge your imagination can afford. Your soulmate will then cross over to you. Your intentions are warm and sincere. Soul Affirmation: Being true to others is the way to be true to myself.

 

CAPRICORN

You need to relax. The urge to do everything will take a toll on you this week unless you make a concerted effort to slow your own vibes down. Think peace love and happiness and let them be real values for you. Feed your soul. Soul Affirmation: I calm my emotions by forgetting about the past.

 

AQUARIUS

You’ll be efficient and productive this week if you got some rest. Slow down. Sometimes less is more, and you’ll see you’re doing better than most. Use your talents to create some free time for yourself. Soul Affirmation: I go inside myself to find peace and joy this week.

 

PISCES

Someone wants to argue, and it’s up to you to walk away. It’s easy to let go of any idea of control if you remember that you are only responsible for your own feelings. Act healthy this week and enjoy your life. Soul Affirmation: As chances come around again. I take advantage of them.

Parent Category: Lifestyle
Category: Arts & Culture

July 12, 2012

(AP) — Move over Christina Aguilera and Jennifer Lopez, a veteran singing diva is joining the ranks of judges on reality TV: Gladys Knight.

BET’s sister network Centric announced Wednesday that Knight will work as the “lead judge” on “Apollo Live.” The new series is a singing competition at New York’s famed Apollo Theater and puts a new spin on the venue’s popular “Amateur Night” showcase. It will debut in the fall.

Knight joins previously announced judges Doug E. Fresh and Michael Bivins of New Edition and Bell Biv DeVoe.

“Apollo Live” is executive produced by Jamie Foxx. Comedian-actor Tony Rock will host the show.

Centric said the series’ winner will take home a cash prize.

Parent Category: Lifestyle
Category: Arts & Culture

July 12, 2012

By MESFIN FEKADU | Associated Press

 

NEW YORK (AP) — Oprah Winfrey is getting a tribute from Alicia Keys.

Keys announced Tuesday that her organization, Keep a Child Alive, will honor Winfrey at its Black Ball event on Nov. 1.

Key says in a statement that the media mogul is “a personal inspiration to me because her philanthropic work truly comes from the heart.”

Winfrey’s humanitarian efforts include building schools in South Africa.

Keep a Child Alive was founded in 2003. It assists those affected by HIV/AIDS in Africa and India. Keys says this year’s Black Ball will pay “special tribute to the empowerment of women — the heartbeat, soul, and backbone of the AIDS movement.”

The ninth annual event will take place at New York’s Hammer­stein Ballroom. Past honorees include former President Bill Clinton, Sir Richard Branson and Bono.

Parent Category: Lifestyle
Category: Arts & Culture

July 12, 2012

By ANTHONY McCARTNEY | Associated Press

 

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A judge ordered an audit of Chris Brown’s community service progress Tuesday after a prosecutor handling his felony assault case cited a possible discrepancy in the amount of work he has performed.

Deputy District Attorney Mary Murray requested the audit because she says the records are not clear on how many hours Brown performed and where the work has been done. Brown had been allowed to perform six ­months’ worth of community labor in his home state of Virginia, but a judge said probation officials in Los Angeles should review detailed records to ascertain how much work he has actually done.

Superior Court Judge Patricia Schnegg said Brown had completed a significant number of hours, but did not elaborate.

Brown’s attorney Pat Harris did not object to the audit, and said after the hearing the issue was related to which jurisdiction his client performed his community service in.

The judge said part of the issue was that the court hadn’t received detailed logs of Brown’s community service, which is supposed to comprise of graffiti removal, roadside cleanup and other manual labor. Schnegg said those logs had previously been provided, but not for recent updates.

Brown, 23, remains on probation for beating his then-girlfriend Rihanna in February 2009. He has completed domestic violence and anger management counseling.

Schnegg ordered Brown to appear at the next hearing, tentatively scheduled for Aug. 21. It will be the first time Brown has had to appear in court in several months, and the R&B singer has generally received favorable reports from probation officials and Schnegg.

There was no mention of the recent New York City bottle-throwing nightclub brawl that left Brown with a cut on his chin, or a woman’s claim that the singer had snatched her cellphone in Miami after she tried to take a picture of him. The melee occurred members of singer Drake’s entourage stopped Brown and his group from leaving the club W.i.P., though neither entertainer has been arrested. Drake has said he was leaving the club when the fight began.

Brown’s attorney Mark Geragos asked that the singer’s probation be terminated in February. But a judge declined, stating that the Grammy nominee should complete more of his community service obligations.

At the time, officials reported that Brown had completed half of the six months’ worth of roadside cleanup, graffiti removal and other manual labor that he was ordered to do after pleading guilty.

Brown is serving a five year probation sentence. 

Parent Category: Lifestyle
Category: Arts & Culture

July 12, 2012

By STACEY PLAISANCE | Associated Press

  

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Actress Tempestt Bledsoe says she’s thrilled to be returning to network television on a show that portrays “a positive Black family” similar to the long-running hit sitcom she was part of for roughly eight years — “The Cosby Show.”

 

“That show was my childhood,” said Bledsoe, who played middle child Vanessa Huxtable in the NBC show that also starred Bill Cosby, Phylicia Rashad, Malcolm-Jamal Warner, Lisa Bonet and Keshia Knight Pulliam. “It did so many things. It greatly influenced the kinds of projects I did. It helped form my core values, like my work ethic.”

 

Bledsoe and actor Anthony Anderson spoke Friday at the Essence Music Festival about the new show they’re starring in, “Guys with Kids,” which premieres this fall on NBC.

 

In an interview after their appearance, the co-stars told The Associated Press they were thrilled the show will spotlight a “positive Black family on network television.”

 

“We just don’t have that right now, not on network television,” said Anderson, who has two children of his own. “Like the Cosby Show, this will be an opportunity to see the love, support, humor and beauty of a Black family on TV.”

 

The show, produced by Jimmy Fallon, is about three 30-something new dads trying to hold on to their youth. “Guys With Kids” will also star Jamie-Lynn Sigler of “The Sopranos” and actors Zach Cregger and Jesse Bradford. One of the characters is a single dad, another is a working father and Anderson’s character is a stay-at-home dad raising four young sons.

 

Bledsoe, who plays Anderson’s working wife, chuckled as she spoke about his character’s daily challenges wrangling the children, including twins under the age of 2.

 

“There’s nothing funnier,” Bledsoe said. “This role was tailor-made for Anthony.”

 

Anderson said he was drawn to the role for several reasons, including his strong feelings about the importance of having a father figure and that his character “chooses” to stay at home with his children rather than being forced to do so because he lost his job.

 

He said he also recognized that in these tough economic times, more dads are choosing to stay home in part because of child care costs.

 

“A lot of them get funny looks because it's not what people are used to seeing, and this show reflects this new dynamic in the American family,” he said.

 

Other celebrities appearing at the festival included actor Russell Hornsby, who played on “Lincoln Heights” and currently stars in the NBC supernatural drama “Grimm”; Bern Nadette Stanis, who played Thelma on the hit 1970s show “Good Times”; comedian and “Think Like a Man” author Steve Harvey; and Malik Yoba, who stars on the SyFy network’s drama “Alphas.”

 

On Saturday, Essence planned to screen Viola Davis’ newest film, “Won’t Back Down.” The movie also stars Marianne Jean-Baptiste, who is known for her role in “Without a Trace.”

 

Later Friday, singer and “Desperate Housewives” actress Vanessa Williams participated in a discussion with her mother, Helen, about relationships. The pair recently released a book, “You Have No Idea,” which gives fans insight into the actress’ upbringing and touches on her life as Miss America, her marriages and subsequent divorces, her entertainment career and motherhood.

 

“If anyone can glean anything from my life, I’m willing to share,” Williams said. “At this stage of my life, I believe my role is that of teacher. This book is my manual. It’s a love story about mothers and daughters and relationships.”

 

Although Williams was not scheduled to sing at Essence, Friday’s lineup for its nightly concerts at the Superdome include performances by Charlie Wilson, D’Angelo, Trey Songz, Keyshia Cole and The Pointer Sisters.

 

Wilson said he was excited about his elevation to the night’s closing performance. In previous years, he was among the main stage acts, but had never closed a show.

 

“This is amazing, the best feeling for me,” Wilson said. “I’m headlining. All the others times were great, but this one, my fifth, is special. Every year I come back and get such an overwhelming response it just fuels me and gives me energy. I perform as if it’s my last, as if I don’t have a tomorrow and I know the fans feel that,” he said.

 

Essence Fest is one of the premier music festivals celebrating black culture and music. It’s been held every Independence Day weekend since 1995, when it marked the 25th anniversary of Essence magazine. The festival continues through Sunday and also will feature Mary J. Blige, Kevin Hart, Tank, Ledisi, Aretha Franklin, Fantasia, Estelle and others.

Parent Category: Lifestyle
Category: Arts & Culture

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