Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Cover Songs from Pasadena's 1st Black Mayor Discovered (circa 1973)

Now, for Pasadenans that have been around for a few generations may already know about Loretta
Thompson Glickman, Pasadena's first African American Mayor. And for those who know even more are aware that she was a traveling Jazz/Pop musician before getting involved in politics. As her music career came to a close, she wanted to start a family.

Born in 1945, Loretta Thompson Glickman was a Jazz singer who toured with The New Christy Minstrels, an American large-ensemble folk music group founded by Randy Sparks in 1961. She also performed the show "London Fog" LIVE at The Gold Rush on December 8th, 1973 with Keith Thomas, Dianne Thomas, Bruce Eskovitz, Steve Rawlins, and others. Keith Thomas has made the "London Fog" cover performance songs available for free download (below).

Glickman was encouraged to get into politics by her colleagues. She began campaigning in Pasadena's Northwest District 3 where she would win and eventually be reelected. District 3, predominantly African American at the time, would not hold Glickman forever. She went on to become Vice Mayor then eventually Pasadena's first ever African American Mayor. It was reported by Ebony Magazine's 1982 August Issue that this was 'something to boast about', as is the annual Tournament of Roses and Rose Bowl game.

It took some research, but we were able to find actual music by Loretta Thompson Glickman. Although these are not originals, they are her actual lead vocals. She's covered hit songs from Stevie
Wonder and Roberta Flack to Aretha Franklin and Gladys Knight. You won't find this information of Loretta Glickman on her Wikipedia page. Musician Keith Thomas took the initiative to publish audio from cover songs they did as "Loretta and London Fog" LIVE at the Gold Rush off Sepulveda Boulevard in Mission Hills, California in 1973.

For the first African American Mayor of Pasadena, we find it cool how she already had a career as a musician. Of course, she wasn't super major, performing at local jazz bands. But, for the local music scene, it is seen as a vital piece of Pasadena music heritage worthy of historic preservation. Loretta's accomplishments are a great model for young women, especially African American girls, to follow. Not necessarily to pursue the exact same career as her, but to reach and possibly beat the standard she set.

Event Cover Art

Download Set One (Audio)
Set One of London Fog @ The Gold Rush 12/8/73
1. I Can See Clearly - Johnny Nash
2. Daniel - Elton John
3. Phoenix - Glen Campbell
4. Sunny - Bobby Hebb
5. Listen to the Music - Doobie Brothers
6. You Are the Sunshine - Stevie Wonder
7. The Morning After - Maureen McGovern
8. Me and Mrs. Jones - Billy Paul
9. Watermelon Man - Herbie Hancock
10. If Lovin' You is Wrong - Luther Ingram
11. Joy to the World - Three Dog Night

Download Set Two (Audio)

Set Two of London Fog @ The Gold Rush 12/8/73
1. Love Train - O' Jays
2. I Don't Want to be Lonely - James Taylor
3. Are You Ready - Pacific Gas and Electric
4. Jesse - Roberta Flack
5. Grazin' in the Grass - Hugh Masekela
6. Midnight Train - Gladys Knight and the Pips
7. Shambala - Three Dog Night

Download Set Three (Audio)

Set Three of London Fog @ The Gold Rush 12/8/73
1. Ashes to Ashes - Fifth Dimension
2. Natural High - Bloodstone
3. Superstition - Stevie Wonder
4. So Very Hard to Go - Tower of Power
5. Killing Me Softly - Roberta Flack
6. Long Train Runnin' - Doobie Brothers

Download Set Four (Audio)

Set Four of London Fog @ The Gold Rush 12/8/73
1. Rock Steady - Aretha Franklin
2. Rainy Night in Georgia - Brook Benton
3. I'll Take You There - Staple Singers
4. Proud Mary - Tina Turner
5. Right Place - Dr. John
6. Stormy - Classic IV
7. Circles - Billy Preston

Pasadena Hip Hop Pioneer 'Paco Swartz' talks Music, His Detroit Roots, and How He's Managed to Stay focused through Adversity...

Today's local music scene in Pasadena, California is alive and well. Mistah Wilson caught up with
Download This Interview
Pasadena Hip Hop pioneer Paco Swartz for an exclusive interview about Music, His Detroit Roots, and How He's Managed to Stay focused through Adversity. In this interview, Paco touches on how his spot was the 'dojo' for a lot of the Pasadena artists from his generation. Giving Glory to God for still being here, Swartz also speaks on growing up in Pasadena and attending Washington Middle School. Paco mentions the adverse conditions of students who attended Washington Middle School, or the "Thunder Dome" in comparison to schools in different districts who didn't have that obstacle.

Paco Swartz pays homage by crediting Pasadena rapper GrinCH for taking him under his wing and encouraging him to play sports as oppose to getting caught up with the streets. Paco reveals that he is "classically" trained in music when singing, arranging, and performing. He learned from popular opera singer Versie Mae Richardson who ran the Boys Choir at Alkebu-lan Cultural Center. Paco honors Versie Mae for being a great influence on his life.

Paco describes his work with Pasadena Vet G Laf on his latest project and how they go all the way back to the Boys Club. He also talks about working with artists like Mike Towns, S Claz, Black Santa, Hardway, Riko DENAro, Tone Grizzard, Harold Blu, and a whole lot more. Paco talks about how he and Pasadena artist Noy grew up in the same neighborhood and the latest update on "Da League", a group consisting of Paco Swartz, Ethan Avery, & 12 Sinatra.

What makes this interview special is the fact that Paco is a true product of Pasadena. Many Pasadena artists of today are people Paco went to school with. And a lot of them you actually see on the forefront of the scene.

In this exclusive interview with Paco Swartz, we drop
"Wake Up" by Paco Swartz ft. Tommy Bunnz
"Energy" by Paco Swartz"
"Can't Let Go" by Paco Swartz ft. Kampaign
"Shots Rang" by Paco Swartz

Friday, January 27, 2017

Why We Don't Hear From Sinbad Anymore

In the 1980s and '90s, David Adkins achieved massive popularity with his keen observational and relationship comedy under the stage name Sinbad. His specials ran on cable constantly, he frequently did routines on the talk show circuit, and he was a regular on television and in film. These days, however...well, he's not. In fact, Sinbad's making more headlines lately for appearing in movies that never actually existed, rather than landing any new leading roles. Here are some reasons why we don't hear from Sinbad anymore...

He stopped making specials | 0:31
Medical problems | 1:14
Bankruptcy | 1:38
Voicework | 2:28
Funk band | 3:00
Everything is cyclical | 3:36

Keith Sweat on today's R&B: "Not the R&B that I know it to be" in Exclusive Interview

Exclusive Q&A w/ Keith Sweat about coming up in the game, what he thinks about R&B music today, and what fans who have yet to see his Vegas show, Keith Sweat: Last Forever can expect.
Take me back to 1987 when the album Make It Last Forever was released. 
It was a time of a new artist coming out with new music trying to make an impact on the music scene. So me dropping an album in 87, or music in 87, was to make a statement and somewhat different than what was out because you had a harder drum beat in the back of R&B music and sultry type of music. The music scene at the time when I came out was good but I helped to make it better. I don’t take credit for it because you had people like the O’Jays out and New Edition, those type of people. I just added to what was already out there with a different type of vibe. I kind of flipped the script a little bit along with people that I worked with like Teddy Riley.

What was it like working with him? 

Me and Teddy knew each other from back in the day so it wasn’t like I just went and grabbed him. We grew up in Harlem. We were already friends.

You have so many hits to date. What’s your all-time favorite song to perform live?
It varies. It definitely varies because I wrote basically every song. It’s not like I’m singing someone else’s music. I’m singing my own music. It really has a lot to do with the audience. Every show you might have a different audience who has their favorites. I might get screams from a song like “Nobody” and other places I go it might be “Twisted” or “Make It Last Forever.”

What was it like working with Johnny Gill and Gerald Levert during the LSG days?

It was great because they were two artists who had their own niche in the music industry. For me to be working with people who had been accomplished and out before I was out...I was a fan of Johnny Gill and I was a fan of Gerald Levert so working with people that I was a great fan of and for me to put together a group like LSG was phenomenal to me because I never thought I would be able to do anything of that sort ... putting a supergroup that millions and millions of people would enjoy.

What do you think about the R&B scene today?
It’s less R&B and more pop-driven. It’s not as R&B-ish as it was back in the day. It’s not the R&B that I know it to be, and the people that grew up in my era or before my era, or even a little bit after my era, knew it to be. Everything pretty much sounds very simple. Like back in the day, you knew who Dru Hill was, even though they had their own sound they were similar to Jodeci or Silk or even New Edition, everyone had their own identity in terms of music and everything sounded kind of different. Nowadays you get confused because all of the artists sound alike, and have the same producers. Back in the day you had Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, you had Teddy Riley, you had Quincey Jones, you had so many different producers, producing for different people that everyone had their unique sound.

Who are you listening to nowadays? Are you more old-school or into some of the new artists? 

I’m more of an...

Read Full Interview

Stevie J Questions the Motives of Record Company Executives

Before Steven “Stevie J” Jordan became a reality TV show star, he was best known as a music producer
with Bad Boy Entertainment. The Love & Hip Hop Atlanta cast member worked with several artists associated with the label, including Biggie. Stevie J was behind the boards for classic The Notorious B.I.G. song such as “Mo Money Mo Problems” and “Notorious Thugs” off the Life After Death album.

So it is no surprise Stevie has an opinion about Atlanta’s Lil Yatchy referring to the Hip Hop legend as “overrated.”

“Life After Death alone should get the respect of any of these young dudes,” said Stevie J. “But these young dudes don’t know sh-t… Google motherf-cker! You ever heard of Google? Google n-gga!”

The 43-year-old television personality added, “Overrated? His hair color is overrated. Sell some records. Pay homage to the cats that made it possible for you to be here. And if they were here, you wouldn’t even be here.”

Stevie J did not end his criticism with just Yachty. He also questioned the motives of record company executives. “All of these execs were like, ‘We need somebody to sound just like that. Get one of them dudes like that, one of them mush mouth dudes. That’s the wave,'” offered Stevie. “But that’s not the wave. Are we progressing or regressing or digressing? I can’t understand why the executive wants something like that. Are we growing?”

Watch Video

DJ Kay Slay Takes Action on Ignorance in Hip Hop

Hip-Hop veteran DJ Kay Slay is fed up with the ignorance of a younger generation of rappers, and he’s doing something about it.

The “Drama King” behind the magazine Straight Stuntin, is launching a new business venture to educate younger rappers.

According to Kay, he’s launching a brand new radio show called “What’s the Science,” that will focus on educating whoever wants to learn about the essence of Hip-Hop.

“Due to the lack of Knowledge in the Hip-Hop culture I’m starting a new show titled ‘What’s the Science’ dedicated to educating whoever would like to seek the knowledge of the essence of Hip-Hop,” DJ Kay Slay explained

“Each episode I will be sitting down with legendary MC’s/DJ’s/Break Dancers/Graffiti Artists/Producers and OG’s with Knowledge of Self.” DJ Kay Slay is more than qualified to tackle the sub...


Thursday, January 26, 2017

Local Artist Finds New Life through her Art After Multiple Sclerosis Diagnosis

Nysie Hurst said it was her illness that propelled her into the world of art. She worked for years as a science teacher at Freedom High School with her husband, school psychologist Adrian Hurst. The pair traveled, taught and conducted research in various places around the globe before and while at Freedom. She had no previous art training.

Symptoms that had affected her since her mid-20s flared up while the couple was on an assignment in a remote part of Alaska in 2012. Hurst, then 39, said she became alarmed when parts of her body went numb, with family members fearing a stroke. After many tests, Hurst was finally diagnosed with MS. The couple returned to Morganton so she could receive more advanced care.

Hurst explained that MS is an auto-immune disease in which the patient’s T-cells cross the blood-brain barrier and attack the nerves’ myelin sheaths, which affects people not only physically through pain, tingling, muscle spasms, numbness and fatigue, but also emotionally and cognitively. Patients with more severe cases may even have trouble breathing or experience incontinence. Emotional symptoms include anxiety, depression and severe mood swings. She said symptoms can come and go and affect different parts of the body at random.

“It changes from day to day,” Hurst said. “It can be debilitating to where you are so exhausted you can’t hardly even get up to go to the bathroom. I never know what kind of a day I’m going to have until I wake up, and that is how all MS patients are. Out of the hundreds of thousands of individuals that have MS, they are all different.”

There is currently no cure for MS, but certain drugs can ease the symptoms. Hurst said that despite medication, the disease affected her ability to focus so much she had to resign from her teaching position, a devastating blow.

“My identity was that I was an adventurous academic,” Hurst said. “I was an outdoor educator, so I climbed mountains, hiked and snowboarded. I also had an analytical mind. I was designing an environmental science pilot class utilizing online technology for Alaska’s Department of Education. And then it all disappeared. I lost both physical and cognitive abilities. MS completely changes your life, not just with you, but with your family and what you expect out of yourself.”


DJ Reggie Ward on Alaskan Hip Hop "We're forgotten about up here"

"My goal has always been to create positive recognition for all of the wonderful talented artists that we have up here, and hopefully somebody will get a chance to really break out of here and get signed," Ward said. "When that happens? I'll be so happy."

The 2017 nominees for the fourth annual Alaska Hip Hop and R&B Awards include some of the most prolific names in Alaska hip-hop — performers including Alaska Redd, Bishop Slice and Starbuks.
The first awards show took place in 2008, Ward said. After a long hiatus, it was revived in 2015. It gained momentum in 2016, Ward said, and when construction at the Loussac Library prompted organizers to find a new venue for the 2017 event, they decided to make the leap to the downtown performing arts center. 

"We just want to have it grow, and it keeps getting better and better every year," he said. Anchorage hip-hop artist Tayy Tarantino is one of more than a dozen Alaskans up for awards Saturday, nominated in four categories — Music Video of the Year, Song of the Year, Male Rapper of the Year and Best Album/Mixtape of the Year.

After growing up in Anchorage, Tarantino moved to Washington, D.C., several years ago and spent some time making music on the East Coast before returning home, inspired to help show the Lower 48 what Alaska hip-hop sounds like.

"We're forgotten about up here; they don't think we have anything up here," he said. "To me, that's a big deal."


How Cities Are Transforming Street Photography

Nick Turpin has been around the block, quite literally. He's been a practicing street photographer for nearly 30 years. But times have changed—so much so that Turpin now prefers the term "candid public photography" to differentiate his art from the increasingly ambiguous genre of street photography.

Turpin estimates that there are at least a thousand photographers roaming the city's streets today, compared to the four or five photographers capturing London's urban life when he started—all of whom he knew. Today, many use smartphone cameras they can fit in their pockets; some young people may never own an old school point-and-shoot. Turpin remembers what street photography was like in the 1990s and early 2000s, before the iPhone and Instagram and Flickr made photo-sharing ubiquitous and gave rise to the everyman photographer. But changing technology isn't the only striking difference: Over the past 30 years, cities themselves have become more hostile to street photography due to terrorism threats and private development...


Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Rapper Tone Grizzard Proves Why He's One of Pasadena's Hardest Hitters

Don't let tha face fool you, Pasadena rapper Tone Grizzard is no lyrical push-over. Actually, he's an apex predator out here. Don't think you could just beat him in a rap battle. He's not a stranger to the local music scene. Having released several mixtapes over the years, Grizzard stands out as one of the most creative lyricists currently doing it from Pasadena.

Tone attended the BringingItTogether Gold Carpet Open Mic Photo Shoot & Drum Circle on 12/20/16 and spit an exclusive (and explicit) freestyle that will leave you astonished! Tone Grizzard, who directs his own music videos, has worked with local producer and public figure Paco Swartz on numerous projects.

In this freestyle, Tone Grizzard proves why he's one of Pasadena's hardest hitters...

Not for tha faint of heart. 

Why Washington BL. in Pasadena, CA is Targeted for Historic Street Name Change to Robinson Blvd

Jackie Roosevelt Robinson. A figure who has greatly inspired the generation of today to live up to
their potential. In Pasadena, California, you see his monuments almost everywhere. From Robinson park and Rec Center to City Hall, John Muir High School to Pasadena City College, Robinson has definitely earned more than just a name for himself. But even after The 4.2-mile stretch of the 210 from Gould Avenue to Orange Grove Boulevard was renamed the "Jackie Robinson Memorial Highway," there are still a few spectators who still aren't satisfied. I mean, it's cool having a portion of a freeway named after you. But, that was something that could've came after Robinson  Blvd.

After watching the movie "42" about the life & career of Jackie Robinson, Mistah Wilson was struck with inspiration and soon thereafter had a vision of seeing Robinson Blvd in real life. After ample research and thinking it through, Mistah Wilson soon found out that there was no major thoroughfare named after Robinson. Wilson felt as though Robinson should have at least one major thoroughfare honoring his legacy. So, he started the "Robinson Boulevard Initiative", an initiative to ultimately change Washington Blvd in Pasadena, CA as we know it to the nation's first ever (Jackie or Mack) Robinson Boulevard.

Before we get into the specifics, let us remind you that Jackie Robinson was a true product of Pasadena, California. Although he was born in Cairo, Georgia, Robinson attended 3 Pasadena educational institutions and soared as an athlete in multiple sports, earning letterman in varsity ranks. By the time he was approached by Branch Rickey, owner of the Brooklyn Dodgers at the time, Robinson already demonstrated his capacity for cultural diversity by attending public school and playing sports at UCLA.

To forward this initiative, Mistah Wilson organized an ambitious 42mile walk effort demonstrating Love, Peace, & Unity in honor of the late great Jackie Robinson. The walk took place on January 31st, 2015, from East Pasadena to Leimert Park on a tailored route. This was Wilson's first step in pushing the initiative. And he knew he was going to be in it for the long haul. Mistah Wilson also emailed the Mayor's office to share his ideals about Robinson Blvd. Bill Bogaard, former Mayor of Pasadena, promptly replied with statistics detailing the Pasadena community's effort to change
Hammond Street to Robinson Street. The report showed how the run was short lived and that it failed. Most people said no and the others were not home to comment. There was simply not enough homeowners who voted yes. Even though the report wasn't promising, Wilson was still encouraged. "Robinson deserves a major thoroughfare, just like Martin Luther King. I feel his character and image was just as significant," explains Mistah Wilson. "And what better place to start than Pasadena, California?"

Here's the deal. The Robinson Boulevard Initiative is meant to ultimately change Washington Blvd in Pasadena, CA as we know it to the nation's first ever (Jackie or Mack) Robinson Boulevard. Below is a list of reasons why Jackie Robinson deserves a street named in his honor and why Washington Blvd in Pasadena is being targeted for the historic name change:

Why Jackie Robinson Deserves a Street Named in his Honor 
  1. This is a community initiative that gives us a positive, progressive African American movement. If Jackie Robinson could inspire us 42 years after passing to embark on such a mission, who knows what impact he can have on future generations.
  2. Jackie Robinson's character stood for love, peace, unity, hard work, and dedication. Perfect for the direction we should go as a community.
  3. Jackie Robinson was culturally unbiased. He embraced people of different ethnic backgrounds and didn't allow racism to be a determining factor of his life and story.
  4. It's no secret that Jackie Robinson contributed to the Civil Rights movement of the mid-1900's. He fulfilled the dream of Martin Luther King by defeating social/racial barriers and being the first African American professional athlete to successfully break through.
  5. Being the first African American baseball player in the major leagues, the first Afro-American inducted in the MLB Hall of Fame, and having his number "42" retired across all teams makes Jackie Robinson worthy of being honored by a major street in Pasadena, California.
  6.  Jackie Robinson inspired the entire team as a rookie and made his teammates better.
  7. The fact that Jackie Robinson graduated from college represents the power of an education. This is a good quality message we want our youth to be influenced by. 
  8. With his education, Jackie Robinson was also an American business man. 
  9.  Jackie Robinson received an honorable discharge from the United States military.
  10.  Jackie Robinson starred in his own movie!

Why Washington Blvd in Pasadena, CA is being targeted for historic street name change to Robinson Blvd.
  1. Not to discredit George Washington for all the great things he's done for the USA, but he has no immediate relevance to the City of Pasadena as Jackie Robinson does.
  2. There is a Washington Blvd 10 miles and several different directions. The change wouldn't be drastic.
  3. Because we feel Robinson deserves a major thoroughfare, it makes sense to target Washington Blvd because surrounding streets like Orange Grove, Fair Oaks, or even Woodbury Rd. are already unique to the City of Pasadena. Furthermore, most North/South bound streets touch different cities like Alhambra and South Pasadena. We want to avoid this so that we may not be presented with additional challenges during the process.
  4. Because Jackie Robinson stood for cultural diversity justifies why Robinson Boulevard should be able to run through the East Washington Village, an Armenian-American community.
  5. No one in the world living today took part in the actual naming of Washington Blvd. in Pasadena, CA.

For more information regarding the Robinson Boulevard Initiative can be found online at the official petition here. If you'd like to support or be part of the discussion, please sign the petition and contact ThaWilsonBlock Magazine here.

"We Here Now" music video by Bizzle (Crowns And Crosses)


Prince Ea: "Why I'm Happy Trump Won"

Saturday, January 21, 2017

Buy 2-Hye's latest album "The Conference of the Council" produced by Mos Keys

Buy This Album
  1. Apartment Jam
  2. The Meeting's in Session (feat. Bones & Souljah 100)
  3. Spread the Word
  4. 'til Your Eyes Roll Back (feat. Coco Avenue)
  5. 2-Hye to Miss the Moon
  6. It's Sealed (feat. Bing Bing)
  7. The Shoe Fits (feat. S.G, Mos Keys & Gabe Kessell)
  8. Inhale Exhale (feat. Mos Keys)
  9. Breather Break (Skit)
  10. 626-818-5150 (feat. Big-E & Patrick Antonian)
  11. An L.A. Second (feat. Laura Espitia)
  12. A Million and a Half (feat. Abo Yerkanyan)
  13. Amen           
It has really been a long time coming, reaching exactly a decade since the debut album. "A Little Past High" (2007), which was produced by Mason David Levy. That is the same producer who also produced the second album, "The Hye Way" (2009). It has been an even longer time coming, considering when 2-Hye met Darrell Lynn in 2003, mentoring the young artist's development through the various mix-tapes prior to the debut album, to fully producing the third album, "Love, Death, and Revolution" (2012). At this point, 2-Hye's younger cousin Jon Treble had developed the production and engineering skills to create the sound that truly complimented 2-Hye's style. For those who don't know, he composed the song "Feel Me" from "The Hye Way", which later lead to the creation of the fourth album, "Back 2-Hye School" (2013). Prior to participating in the Armenian Emcee Cypher of 2015, 2-Hye met Mos Keys and hit it off instantly. Both extremely talented individuals were excited to work together so Mos Keys provided 2-Hye the proper "Kitchen" to cook up a storm. The appreciation and respect for constant growth and development is why the fifth album, "The Conference of the Council" (2016), gives you the best of 2-Hye and Mos Keys thus far. A couple of tracks were composed by Jon Treble, which ultimately made this album a well-rounded 2-Hye experience.

3 Pasadena-based Clothing Brands that Represent the City's True Essence

Ask around. Pasadena, California is the place 'you want to live' if you're in Los Angeles County or Southern California. It's location sets it apart from any other city. Even Altadena and South Pasadena feel different. As the generations came and went, traditions were born and leaders were made. Today, the pride & culture surrounding the Pasadena / Altadena area is very strong and tight-knit. It's like Compton. Everybody knows everybody. And for those who don't, they still know somebody who knows somebody who knows everybody.

There are a lot of things that make people fall in love with Pasadena. Although everyone has their own reasons why they love the city, there's one common thing that gives natives a sense of belonging. DENA. Quiet as kept, Pasadena has birthed great people. From Jackie Robinson to Michael Cooper. Van Halen. It has also been a place where greats have established themselves like famous R&B singer Teena Marie. On today's scene, the artists and entrepreneurs of Generation X and Y have their own businesses and brands that represent the true essence of life in Pasadena / Altadena. And we've taken the initiative in listing 3 unique & local clothing brands that currently represent Pasadena / Altadena culture in it's truest form.

Obvious Giant - The parent company of DENABOY / DENAGIRL, Obvious Giant is a clothing company owned & operated by Dale Mario, Otto Evans, and Eric Wilson. Since 2008,
Pasadena Artist & Entertainer Zoneiak McGee
OG has been the premiere clothing brand in the streets of Pasadena / Altadena being worn by local rappers and musicians at popular events which include the Yardnic & Nic@Nite. The brand helped create a unifying bond between Pasadena and Altadena, considering everyone went to school together. Obvious Giant has been one of the biggest local clothing brands worn by actual natives of Pasadena / Altadena over the past 10 years. You can see their gear in many local music videos, promotional footage, and events. The makers of this brand are products of Pasadena / Altadena making it one of thee top most authentic apparel lines in the city. You can find Obvious Giant (DENABOY/DENAGIRL) by visiting Dorothy's Boutique at 2057 N Los Robles Ave #11, Pasadena, CA 91104 or Call (626) 817-9777

Pasadena-ish - Created by G Marcus, Pasadena-ish ("ish" standing for 'I Stay Hustling') rooted in 2013 and has since grown into a well known local clothing brand. Pasadena-ish has made
Master P (left) & G Marcus (right)
appearances in a lot of local music videos and has even been seen worn on models & porn stars ;) . One thing that makes this brand different is the diversity in types of clothing. In fact, Pasadena-ish can be seen more on pants, beanies, and undergarments than T-Shirts. Pasadena-ish has been very well received by the younger Pasadena generation and embraced citywide. This clothing brand represents a generation's perspective and artistic expression. Currently, Pasadena-ish is predominantly promoted on Instagram. Follow @pasadenaish_i_stay_hustlin to get in contact with G Marcus for orders.


We Are Born and Raised - A graduate of John Muir High School, We Are Born & Raised clothing company was created by Eric Williams of Altadena as a way to strengthen pride
& culture around cities that people grew up in. The cool thing about this brand is that it started in DENA but reaches to virtually any city you can think of. The brand essentially gives customers a way to sport their own city with the We Are Born and Raised design. Williams also has variant themes like Just A Kid from... and You can see his gallery and order your very own We Are Born and Raised gear on their official website.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

L.A. Jazz Legend Barbara Morrison performs in Leimert Park for MLK Day 2016

Dom Promo interviews Comedian Anthony Stone on WilsonBlock100 Radio

Dom Promo, commonly known as Dominic Poole or DOMINANCE, connected with Inland Empire Comedian Anthony Stone as they discuss the movement, love for the craft, and greats that have influenced him.

Percy Johnson interviews artists on the Gold Carpet

Percy Johnson, a native of Pasadena, California, interviewed local artists who attended and performed at the BringingItTogether Gold Carpet Open Mic Photo Shoot & Drum Circle on Friday December 30th, 2016. 

Poet Usolosopher Exclusive Q&A about Social Issues, Polynesian Heritage, and What He Plans on Accomplishing through Poetry…

“Encourage the youth to pick up their pens and to tell their stories because everyone's story deserves to be heard.”

Mistah Wilson: Greetings, Usolosopher! Honored to have you here with us for this exclusive Q&A w/ ThaWilsonBlockMagazine! How ya’ been?
Usolosopher: I have been blessed to have made it this new year bro. It's a honor to be on ThaWilsonBlockonce again. I just thank you bro for your endless support for my poetry.

Mistah Wilson: No doubt! First off, we commend you for your hard work. Your consistency does not go unnoticed. You came out to The Element and The BringingItTogether Gold Carpet Photo Shoot in Pasadena, CA and shared some poetry. What other cities have you managed to book performances at?
Usolosopher: I had my first ever book signing this past November in Montebello, CA at the Daily Brew Coffee Bar. I knew about that place because they have this open mic called Eastside Poetry hosted by Nicole Serratowho is a poet, model, and a great friend of mine. I have also been at multiple open

mics in Long Beach, Whittier, Los Angeles, Inglewood, Sylmar, Hollywood, Compton and Carson.

Mistah Wilson: We had the opportunity to see you perform as a featured artist at Shades of Afrika/ Griot Café in Long Beach, CA. You did awesome! How was the experience for you?
Usolosopher: The experience of my first feature at Shades of Afrikawas exciting and nerve racking because I didn't want to give a mediocre performance so I prayed to the Most High before I went up to do my feature. Yet, once I was up here, I can feel the energy of the people being so captivating and healing as I got relaxed later on into my feature. I loved it. Being at Shades of Afrikafor the Griot Cafe is a great experience with great hospitality.

Mistah Wilson: How do you develop concepts and subject matter

when writing new poems?
Usolosopher: The way that I develop the content and subject matter of my poems are of observation by looking at what I see everyday by watching documentaries, listening to music, reading books, and to also talk about things that people rarely talk about but in my own style and point of view.

Mistah Wilson: Let’s talk about your poetry book “Diary of a Mad Uso”. What led you to publish a book and what did it take to accomplish it?

Usolosopher: What led me to publish my book "The Diary of A Mad Uso" is that I wanted to leave a legacy for other Polynesian poets and writers. I wanted to break away from the stereotypes of Polynesians being just big, stupid, lazy, and can only make it in wrestling or football. I wanted to show the Polynesian youth that we are more than that and that the Most High blessed us all with talent and a purpose in this life. It took a lot of courage and inspiration to accomplish being a published author.

Mistah Wilson: What are some of your personal favorite poems in the book?
Usolosopher: Honestly fam, I love all the poems in the book because I felt that each poem is different in subject and

captures the reader in different ways. Some of favorite poems are Queen because women deserve to be treated better this world having to suffer so much. I like the poem I wrote for my girlfriend Jolita, The Love of The Life in which I give simple metaphors with imagery to capture how I feel for her. My other is favorite poem is If I Was President because I had this image of people of melanin coming together to overthrow the puppets and the shadow government in a fun way where have Black, Mexican, Samoan women walking around freely with their natural beauty, barbecue going on outside, me as the president and Jolita as my wife and first lady with the white house becoming the house of melanin with nothing but love.

Mistah Wilson: In your book, you discuss everything from social issues to Polynesian heritage. What overall message are you trying to send to your audience?

Usolosopher: The overall message that I am trying to send to my audience is that we need to be critical thinkers and to come as one of people of melanin by educating ourselves on who we truly are. The school system here isn't going to tell us that we once were of royalty who built majestic cities and pyramids, who navigated the seas, who were one with the Most High in our spirituality and why they don't want us to know about it and by occupying us with frivolous things to aid our destruction.

Mistah Wilson: What are some of your personal favorite poems in the book?
Usolosopher: Honestly fam, I love all the poems in the book
because I felt that each poem is different in subject and captures the reader in different ways. Some of favorite poems are Queen because women deserve to be treated better this world having to suffer so much. I like the poem I wrote for my girlfriend Jolita, The Love of The Life in which I give simple metaphors with imagery to capture how I feel for her. My other is favorite poem is If I Was President because I had this image of people of melanin coming together to overthrow the puppets and the shadow government in a fun way where have Black, Mexican, Samoan women walking around freely with their natural beauty, barbecue going on outside, me as the president and Jolita as my wife and first lady with the white house becoming the house of melanin with nothing but love.

Mistah Wilson: In your book, you discuss everything from social issues to Polynesian heritage. What overall message are you trying to send to your audience?
Usolosopher: The overall message that I am trying to send to my audience is that we need to be critical thinkers and to come as one of people of melanin by educating ourselves on who we truly are. The school system here isn't going to tell us that we
once were of royalty who built majestic cities and pyramids, who navigated the seas, who were one with the Most High in our spirituality and why they don't want us to know about it and by occupying us with frivolous things to aid our destruction.

Mistah Wilson: We also hear you have a sequel to your book in the works. What insight can you give us on that potential project?
Usolosopher: The second book that I'm working on is called Usolosophy: Poetic Soulpieces. You inspired me with this title when we did the interview in Long Beach last year. This poetry will have more poems than the first one but also will have pictures in the book. Usolosophy: Poetic Soulpieces will be out in October or November of 2017. 

Mistah Wilson: What do you plan on accomplishing with your poetry?
Usolosopher: What I plan on accomplishing with my poetry is to encourage the youth to pick up their pens and to tell their
stories because everyone's story deserves to be heard. To also have places for kids to express themselves through poetry because poetry is a form of art and art can heal communities and people worldwide. 

Mistah Wilson: Where can people keep up with you online?
Usolosopher: People can keep up with me online on Facebook at: my personal page: Molimau Andrew Fatu and my artist page: The Usolosopher Poet. Also visit my label Positive Soundz Entertainment page on Facebook. I have a Facebook page for my ALOFAS podcast where I interview people with audio or Facebook live. You can also catch me on Instagram at: usolosopher and my personal IG at: mauagelufatu. You guys can also listen to my poetry at Soundcloud and Reverb Nation under Usolosopher. Visit my official website www.usolosopher.weebly.com to contact me and follow up on upcoming poetry performances. Lastly, visit my label's website at www.positivesoundzentertainment.weebly.com if you want to be a part of the Positive Soundz team. 

Mistah Wilson: Hey, Uso! It’s been awesome having you for this exclusive interview w/ ThaWilsonBlock Magazine. We are proud to have you a part of the movement and we look forward to supporting you in your future endeavors. If you have any shout outs, let’s hear em’…
Usolosopher: I would like to thank you bro for having me on the Wilson Block for this exclusive interview. I would to thank the Most High for the gift of poetry. I would love give thanks to my parents and family for their love and support. I will want to shout out by showing love once again to you brother, to the Wilson Block, True Spitters, Big Percy, Shy But Flyy, Complicated Passion, Felicia Cade, Paradise Lane, MC JC, Speech, Impacc, Jragonfly Jay, Nerd, Lovey Scott, Dwyane Green, Cheryl Williams, LBCC BSU, F.L.O.W. Poetry Club & Slam team, at Dominguez Hills, the Dominguez Hills BSU,
Intervarsity Christian Fellowship at DH, my brothers and sisters in Baltimore, Whitney and her sister Brittney, Adam, Freedom, the whole island of Samoa, Long Beach, Ann Van Wellman, Melania Williams, October Blu, my bro A Kold Piece, and shout out to all of you who I couldn't name but you know I love you all and much love to my Ebony Queen Jolita for always being there for me to encourage me and continue to be supportive, loyal, and loving.

ThaWilsonBlock Magazine Issue65 (July 2018)