Saturday, May 27, 2017

EVENT: WALKING TOUR of South Marengo Historic District in Pasadena, California 6/3/17

South Marengo Historic District

Saturday, June 3 | 9:00 - 11:00am

Tickets: Member $15 | Non-Member $18

South Marengo was once the address of Victorian Mansions and modest hotels, praised by President Teddy Roosevelt as a beautiful example of city planning. Pasadena Heritage nominated the Historic District to the National Register in 1982, then purchased and rehabilitated its first hands-on Prservation Fund project here. We also heped form the special business overlay zone, which allows some commercial uses in the restored homes. This tour will explore the people and stories associated with this turn-of-the-century Craftsman neighborhood.

Friday, May 26, 2017

STREET PHOTOGRAPHY: "London Lights" By Tom Jeavons

EVENT: Open Mic Poetry Slam in Lomita, CA 6/2/17

Our Friday Community Nights begin with our First Friday Open Mic Poetry Slam! Join us to listen to original poetry - uncensored, raw, and hearfelt - and share some of your own! Great experience for sharing the beauty and power of words. Seating is limited, doors open at 7:30.

Our poetry slams are hosted by Luis Antonio Pichardo, the founder and executive director of DSTL Arts, a nonprofit arts mentorship organization that inspires, teaches, and hires creative at-risk youth, ages 16–21 years old. His work with youth, and adults, encourages them to pursue the arts as the sustainable career it can be.

Holding an MFA in Creative Writing from CalArts, and having been featured in various poetry anthologies, Luis strives to create an inclusive community for all artists by sharing his knowledge in poetics and publishing. As an artist himself, Luis pushes for artistic excellence and a high standard of care through all of his teaching endeavors. To learn more about Luis and DSTL Arts, visit today.

Thursday, May 25, 2017

THROWBACK THURSDAY: Roxanne Shanté (1984)

Roxanne Shanté (born Lolita Shanté Gooden; November 9, 1969) is an American hip hop musician. Born and raised in the Queensbridge Projects of Queens, New York City, Shanté first gained attention through the Roxanne Wars and was part of the Juice Crew.

Roxanne Shanté was brought up in Queens, New York. She started rapping at the age of thirteen. In 1984 the young rapper ran into Tyrone Williams, DJ Mr. Magic, and record producer Marley Marl outside the Queensbridge housing project. The three of them were discussing U.T.F.O. since the rap trio had failed to make an appearance at a concert. U.T.F.O. had recently released a single called "Hanging out". The single did not get a lot of critical acclaim, however the B-Side featured the song "Roxanne, Roxanne", a song about a woman who would not respond to their advances, became a hit. Shanté, who was a member of the Juice Crew, walked right up to them and offered to write a track to get back at U.T.F.O., posing as the Roxanne in the U.T.F.O. song. They liked her idea and Marley produced the song "Roxanne's Revenge" using the original beats from an instrumental version of "Roxanne, Roxanne". At that time her Queens-based crew was in a battle with KRS-One's Bronx-based crew, because both of the crews claimed that their district was the true home of hip hop. The track became an instant hit and Shanté, only 14 years old at the time, one of the first female MCs to become very popular. Following this, the "Roxanne Wars" started, and Shanté continued to rap and started touring.


Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Monday, May 22, 2017

PHOTOGRAPHY: Abandoned Yellow House in Nova Scotia.

Photo by Matt Madden & Kim Vallis

Pasadena rapper/producer Emani talks New Projects, Collaborations, and the State of Hip Hop

Pasadena rapper/producer Emani talks New Projects, Collaborations, and the State of Hip Hop

Singer/Songwriter K-Syran talks Inspiration, Influence, and her Latest Single "Dizzy" (Interview)

Mistah Wilson: Hello, K-Syran! Honored to have you here with us for this exclusive interview with
ThaWilsonBlock Magazine. How ya' been?
K-Syran: Awesome! Never been so busy with single releases and new album coming out. Very exciting year!!!

Mistah Wilson: For our audience reading this, could you give us a quick background on yourself?
K-Syran: I'm an actress, I have my own play; Breaking The Silence that has been shown in London/NY/The Hague and Geneva, I'm also shooting a movie where I'm playing the lead, and I am a Singer songwriter. The last couple of years have been amazing with topping #38 Billboard Chart and playlisted both in the US and UK. So happy:)

Mistah Wilson: What led you to become a musician?
K-Syran: The move from London to Geneva. No West End and big movies in Switzerland so I got into the singing and songwriting. Music is big with amazing festivals, opera house and jazz festivals.
It has really brought me places I had never dreamt of!

Mistah Wilson: What are some of your current & upcoming Release of my US single Dizzy ! So excited about it!
K-Syran: Had amazing musicians like Garry Beers, INXS! And wonderful producer, Eric Alexandrakis.

Mistah Wilson: Who are some musicians who influenced the artist you are today?
K-Syran: Coldplay, Mick Jagger, Tracey Chapman, David Bowie, Prince, Calvin Harris, David Guetta, Billie Holiday wow there are so many who have influenced me.

Mistah Wilson: Where do you pull inspiration from when writing new songs?
K-Syran: Everything! What I see, feel, smell, experience, read, hear. Everyday I'm inspired by something, even if it's just one
phrase I will write something every day. Also suddenly a melody will pop into my head and I will record it on my phone. Love my iPhone!

Mistah Wilson: What do you plan on accomplishing thru your music?
K-Syran: Awareness.

Mistah Wilson: What part of your artistry would you say defines you the most?
K-Syran: Authenticity

Mistah Wilson: Where can people keep up with you online?

Mistah Wilson: K-Syran, it's been awesome having you here for this exclusive interview with ThaWilsonBlock Magazine! If you wanna send some shout outs, let's hear it..
K-Syran: Nothing is impossible. The word itself says, I'm possible. Thank you so much for interviewing & featuring me!

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Snoop Dogg Announces new Gospel Album!?

The iconic Hip-Hop figure released his fifteenth studio album Neva Left independently through his Doggystyle Records this Friday but is already planning his next one. During a recent promo stop on The Pharmacy show on Beats 1 radio, Snoop told the hosts that he’s now working on a Gospel album. He mentioned names like Faith Evans, Charlie Wilson and Jeffrey Osborne who will be involved in the project, and promises to “make it right”.

STREET ART: 16th Avenue Tiled Steps, San Francisco

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Ice Cube reveals "Last Friday" movie is in the works!

Fans have been curious about the status of the rumored Friday movie that has been teased for a couple of years, but we finally have a confirmed answer. While stopping by The Late Late Show with James Corden, Ice Cube announced that he and his team are finally working on Last Friday.

This will be final installation of the famous movie series that blew up in the 1990s. Sitting next to singer Jason Derulo, the Predator rapper spoke on the upcoming film, confirming that it is finally in the works.

“We’re working on one right now. We’re gonna call it Last Friday,” revealed Cube.

After hearing a roar of applause from the audience, Derulo also chimed in on the big news, sharing his excitement with the Hip Hop Squares executive producer, being that he used to watch Friday as a kid.

“Friday was one of my favorite movies of all time. Literally, I would watch it every single Friday. It was that serious,” he explained.

Pharrell Williams receives Doctorate of Fine Arts degree from New York University

The “Happy” singer received a Doctor of Fine Arts degree from New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts at the Yankee Stadium on Wednesday and delivered a ten-minute commencement speech to graduates in which he praised their generation for helping create change with issues such as social justice, the use of technology, and equal rights.

“Your generation is unraveling deeply entrenched laws, principles, and misguided values that have held women back for far too long and, therefore, have held us all back.” he said. “Imagine the possibilities when women are not held back. The world that you will live in that will be a lot better. This is the first generation that navigates with the security and confidence to treat women as equals.”

Chris Rock Chooses a Kanye West Album as The Best in Hip Hop History

Hip-hop music’s G.O.A.T. title has been tossed around by artists and fans alike, who have measured those worthy of it on the basis of several different factors: artistry, accolades and, of course, albums.

For comedian and film A-lister Chris Rock, there’s one slot available for the G.O.A.T. album seat, and he’s crowned Kanye West’s My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy with it.

Suge Knight to be released from Jail with a Biopic in the works?

Wack 100 Saying that Suge Knight will be out of Jail in 90 Days and He has the Rights to do a Suge Biopic.

Bizzy Bone talks Homelessness, Illuminati, & Mumble Rap

The conversation then focused on Bizzy Bone separating himself from the group for a bit, which he explained happened at a point when he wanted to find himself. He also addressed previous interviews where he said he was homeless and he seemed to be speaking in tongues.

During the conversation, the two rappers spoke about their upcoming New Waves album and their thoughts on mumble rap. You can hear more of what they had to say, including their thoughts on today's rap being more melodic, in the above clip.
Bizzy Bone and Krazie Bone chopped it up with VladTV, revealing their thoughts on the Illuminati and the possibility of young rappers getting into the society. Bizzy chimed in by saying that a lot of young artists are going the gimmicky route for shock value purposes.


Old Pasadena Historic Pubs & Trivia
Thursday, May 25 | 4:30 - 7:30pm & 6:00 - 9:00pm
Tickets: Member $80 | Non-Member $87

Experience the history of a few famous and infamous Old Pasadena watering holes and haunts. This guided tour of our original downtown includes stops at a handful of pubs, distinctive for their history, architecture and spirits. Tour-goer's can delight in beer tastings plus little-known facts and forgotten lore. Dinner and a set of flight glasses are included -- a great way to get to know historic Old Pasadena!

THROWBACK THURSDAY: Hip Hop group 'Onyx' (1988)

The group was formed in 1988 and Onyx released its first 12" single, "Ah, And We Do It Like This", in 1990. The song revealed a strong jazz influence, noticeably more than in their later work. In 1991, Onyx was going to present a demo to Jam Master Jay at Def Jam, but Big DS and Sonee Seeza (then only known as Suavé) were in Connecticut at the time, so Fredro Starr called up his cousin Sticky Fingaz (who lived in Brooklyn). Once Sticky Fingaz joined the group, the group released Throw Ya Gunz in 1992.

After the track Onyx signed a recording contract with Def Jam and were promised an album which became 1993's Bacdafucup LP. The album met with great commercial success, including heavy airplay on radio and MTV for the single "Slam". Onyx also performed with Biohazard on the tune "Judgment Night", taken from the soundtrack album of the same name. Onyx also received critical acclaim, winning Soul Train's album of the year.


Tuesday, May 16, 2017

POEM: "Lost Innocence" by Michaela Remmel

by Michaela Remmel (April 2015)

Wind whistling,
Snow glistening,
We try not to,
But we're all listening.

Loud screams,
Bad dreams,
It's very far,
But close it seems.

Sad day,
Lost our way,
All we can do,
Is simply pray.

Innocence gone,
Life no longer long,
We may not know, 
But we're all doing wrong.

Monday, May 15, 2017

STREET ART: Characters By Selfz - Bruxelles (Belgium)

How to Kill Fear in 5 Seconds

Cassidy: "Rappers with Ghostwriters Can't Be on Top 5 Lists"

Philadephia lyricist Cassidy here talks to Vlad about the phenomenon of ghostwriting in the rap scene and being a ghostwriter for major artists himself. Cassidy is a firm believer that any MC with a ghostwriter cannot be considered an all time great. "Any rapper with a ghostwriter cannot be in a top 5 or 10 list," he says. "If you're a rapper you're supposed to be able to rap."

Why is Robert Downey, Jr. the Highest Paid Avenger?

Robert Downey Jr. (RDJ) was the only person on The Avengers cast (excluding perhaps Samuel L. Jackson) who can consistently put butts in seats. None of the other Avengers are A-list stars and their
side projects (excluding Chris Evans turns as Captain America, which is technically an ancillary project of the Avengers franchise and Jeremy Renner's role in the most recent Jason Bourne sequel) don't earn enough money for them to be able to negotiate an RDJ-sized share of the pie.

Robert Downey Jr. is the star of The Avengers. Period. Without him (and the next sequel may discover this to its detriment) the franchise really doesn't hold its own and the grosses begin to drop. As such, the producers are faced with the very real possibility that if they didn't pay him what he wants, he could easily walk away and they'd potentially lose HUNDREDS of millions (Yes...Hundreds) of dollars.

If or when Jeremy Renner and Scarlet Johansson (the only two in the Avengers pantheon who can do it) earn RDJ levels of return on their side projects, then they can cash Downey Jr.-sized paychecks. Until then, they are talented character actors who occasionally get minor leading roles.

Answered by Jon Mixon via Quora

Get to know Singer/Dancer Ravoshia Mone' Whaley

Ravoshia Mone' Whaley was born in Merryvile, Indiana. With her mother hailing from Texas and her father from Bermuda, Ravoshia was afforded the opportunity to have dual citizenship. Growing up, Ravoshia studied ballet at the United Dance Production in Bermuda. In her senior year of high school while still pursuing dance, she developed a passion for singing. Realizing her gift for both song and dance, Ravoshia focused on honing her craft and pursuing music full time. Ravoshia fancied her musical styling in the same light as her singing and rapping idols Beyonce, Janet Jackson, Aaliyah, Lady Saw and Sean Paul. Add to her passion for singing and dancing, the ability to write song lyrics, and it seems apparent that this Texas native aims to achieve the same level of acclaim and prosperity as those same pop icons as hers.

PHOTOGRAPHY: Lake Wakatipu, New Zealand by Dominic Kamp

Thursday, May 11, 2017

VIDEO: Snake Island (Full Documentary)

The highest concentration of one of the most venomous snakes in the world is located about 90 miles off the coast of Santos, Brazil, on a small, craggy chunk of otherwise uninhabitable land. It's known as Ilha da Queimada Grande, or Snake Island, and it's the only place you will find 2,000 or so of the wholly unique golden lancehead viper, or Bothrops insularis.

When you step ashore, with a keen eye you spot one of these snakes roughly every 10 to 15 minutes after clearing the base of the island, and as many as one every six square yards in other parts of the island. This means, as you are walking through the waist-high brush, even with some good boots on, it's like walking through a minefield that moves and, instead of blowing you into chunks, slowly paralyzes you and liquefies your insides, as the golden lancehead does to the migrating birds it feeds on in the treetops...

THROWBACK THURSDAY: West Coast Hip Hop group 'Above the Law'

Above the Law is an American hip hop group from Pomona, California, founded in 1989 by Cold 187um, Laylaw, KMG the Illustrator, Go Mack, and DJ Total K-Oss.

Above the Law claim to have invented the "G-funk" sound, which was made popular by Dr. Dre's The Chronic.[6] Dre was involved in producing two tracks on Above the Law's debut album. Part of the post-N.W.A explosion of California gangsta rap, Above the Law came out of the Eastern Los Angeles suburb of Pomona; leader Cold 187 um, aka Big Hutch (born Gregory Hutchinson), was joined by KMG the Illustrator (born Kevin Gulley), Go Mack (born Arthur Goodman), and DJ Total K-Oss (born Anthony Stewart). Mixing '70s vintage-funk and soul samples with live instrumentation (Hutchinson had studied jazz while in school), the group signed with Eazy-E's Ruthless Records and issued their debut album, Livin' Like Hustlers, in 1990; split into violence- and sex-themed sides, it was co-produced by Dr. Dre (prior to N.W.A's rancorous breakup) and received well in gangsta circles. The Vocally Pimpin' EP appeared in 1991, and the full-length follow-up Black Mafia Life was released in 1993. Go Mack left the group shortly thereafter, and Above the Law stuck with the trio format for their last Ruthless album, 1994's Uncle Sam's Curse, which featured greater contributions from KMG.

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Singer ALIVYA talks Life in Kenya, Her Love for Singing, and African Culture...

Singer ALIVYA talks Life in Kenya, Her Love for Singing, and African Culture...

Mistah Wilson: Greetings, Alivya! We are honored to have you here with us for this exclusive interview with ThaWilsonBlock Magazine. How ya' been?
ALIVYA: Great, I have been good , am grateful and honored to be here with you, too.

Mistah Wilson: So our audience can get a better understanding of you, could you give us a quick background on yourself?
ALIVYA: I was born and raised in Kenya, was raised by a single mother, it was me, my mother and my brother. Growing up was not an easy journey, I faced everything from having both my mother and brother sick and having to take care of them, to lack of finances but one thing was for sure, whenever my mum was healthy and on her two feet , I knew me and my brother would be fed, she is a very strong woman, and she always taught me to be strong. I found peace in song writing and singing , I joined the youths choir at 11 years and the praise and worship team , and I sang among 25 year olds. I participated in music and drama clubs and we toured the country and performed in many festivals and wrote my first song when I was 11.

Mistah Wilson: How was life growing up in Nairobi, Kenya for you?
ALIVYA: Growing up in Kenya was actually fun, growing up, I had lots of friends and some of the games we played that will forever remain in my mind are, hide and seek , and police and robber. It was also about lots of books, we read a lot, I had to take a lot of
classes and I had to pass them all. There was also a lot of church, my mum made sure that I attended all the services.

Mistah Wilson: What led you to becoming a musician?
ALIVYA: My love for singing and the healing effect it gives me, I also got a lot of support from friends and my mum. I love it so much and it keeps me going through tough times.

Mistah Wilson: In what ways do you incorporate African culture in your music?
ALIVYA: I always try to incorporate African drum patterns to my songs even if the song sounds really western, I also dress in African attires in my videos and photo shoots.

ThaWilsonBlock Magazine Issue51 featuring ALIVYA

View Online   ///   Digital Download

800 Arden Road & 800 Hudson Avenue, Pasadena, California by Mistah Wilson Photography

Monday, May 8, 2017

HISTORIC LANDMARK: Old Fresno Water Tower (1894)

The Old Fresno Water Tower is a historic water tower in Fresno, California. It is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Designed by George Washington Maher, the tower was completed in late 1894. It ceased operation in 1963 and has served as a visitors' center since 2001.

Chicago architect George Washington Maher was commissioned in 1891 to design a new water tower for Fresno in the Tower District. His design was influenced by the Great Chicago Fire of 1871; the fire destroyed the Chicago Public Library but not the Chicago Water Tower, which then acted as a temporary library. Maher's original design called for a library and a third floor to be built within the tower, but neither was executed. Construction finished in November 1894, and the water tower remained in use until 1963 when its pumping equipment had become inadequate. The water tower was added to the National Register of Historic Places on October 14, 1971. It was designated an American Water Landmark by the American Water Works Association in 1972.

Sunday, May 7, 2017

How To Build The Model Train Layout Of Your Dreams (Step by Step Tutorial)

Regardless of whether you are an absolute beginner, or have been in the hobby for years, there is always something new to learn and discover.

Trouble is: trying to learn everything on your own is a daunting task, so that’s where the “Members Only”Model Train Club can help.

You can read the information, print it out if you like… or, just relax, enjoy andlearn from the videos. It’s up to you.

You’ll get to ask questions and work through ideas with the experts. Everything will be at your finger tips, so you won’t need to waste hours trying to find the answers ever again.

Saturday, May 6, 2017

STREET ART: REVOLT – The Street Art creations by Tristan Eaton

STREET ART: Hopare - Paris, France - September, 2014 (LP)

EVENT: GO BEHIND THE SCENES @ the Pasadena Playhouse 5/13/17 (Members Only. Join Today!)

Go behind the scenes of this 1925 Mission Revival performing arts venue, designed by Pasadena artist and architect Elmer Grey, featuring a fire curtain painted by Pasadena artist Alson S. Clark. For over half a century, the Pasadena Playhouse was a vital force in the American theatre scene. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1977, it remains one of the city’s finest examples of Mission Revival architecture. Open to members only, join today!


at the Pasadena Playhouse

Saturday, May 13 | 10:00 am - 12:00 pm

Pasadena Playhouse, 65 South El Molino Ave.
Ticket: Members FREE. Join Here!

How To Help Prevent Panic Attacks.

If you have panic attacks or an anxious feeling more than you'd want, you probably miss out on some great experiences you could have in life. Pity.

Some causes are overlooked, and until you find them you'll stay anxious, especially at times where you really need to be relaxed.
On this website you can test-drive a 14 week home study course that will give you significant results as of the 4th week give or take (if you follow the instructions in it).

Friday, May 5, 2017

HISTORIC LANDMARK: Colorado Street Bridge (aka Suicide Bridge) in Pasadena, CA (1912)

The Colorado Street Bridge was designed and built in 1912 at a total cost of $191,000 (equivalent to $4,566,867 in 2016). The bridge was designed by the firm of Waddell & Harrington, based in Kansas City, Missouri. The structure carries Colorado Boulevard (then called "Colorado Street"), the major east-west thoroughfare connecting Pasadena with Eagle Rock and Glendale to the west, and with Monrovia to the east. It spans 1,486 feet (453 m) and is notable for its distinctive Beaux Arts arches, light standards, and railings. The bridge is on the National Register of Historic Places and has been designated a National Historic Civil Engineering Landmark by the American Society of Civil Engineers.

Overcoming Your Fear of Flying? It May Be Easier Than You Think.

Take just a minute and imagine you’re on board an airplane, going someplace you’re really looking forward to visiting. You’re relaxed and comfortable in your seat, with a calm, quiet mind when you notice that you’re actually enjoying the peace and quiet of the flight. You hear the steady ‘whoosh’ of the engines and find it soothing, like the sound of waves breaking randomly and steadily on the ocean shore. What used to cause you so much stress and anxiety has become something you actually look forward to as a time for you to let go and just be at peace.

You look out the window and see the crisp blue sky and puffy white clouds far beneath you, and you remember sitting in your chair and first reading these words - when I told you that your next flight could be different - and you smile to yourself as you realize that this moment, RIGHT NOW was when flying began to change for you...

Keep reading and learn how you CAN overcome your fear of flying and why you may only need to do two things to make it happen...

ThaWilsonBlock Magazine Issue65 (July 2018)