An Ode to The Mamas

Our mothers, ourselves. Hate it or love it, traits of the women who birthed and raised us are coursing through our veins. We move like them, think like them, get our talents from them… Sure, we get it from our fathers too, but mothers are our first taste of what it means to be women. From how to do our hair and makeup or walk in heels, to how to be a friend, a warrior, a wife, a mom. This Mother’s Day and every day, we honor our goddesses of creation. Those here with us Earthside, or with us in spirit but always by our side. We love you, Mom. 

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Future Perfect

It is no secret that growing up in front of the camera has left many an identity by the wayside. This has yet to be the case for Lauren Keyana Palmer better known as Keke Palmer.The 23 year-old actress and singer started her career in entertainment more than a decade ago at the age of nine. But her grasp on faith, privacy and the difference between the 21 professional and personal has always been well beyond her years. In this letter to her 40 year-old self, Keke offers a few words of guidance to make sure she stays on track.

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Seeing Sounds – Pt.2

The conclusion of the wonderful conversation between noted journalist Jenna Wortham (of The New York Times and the NYT podcast Still Processing) and superb music supervisor Morgan Rhodes (Middle of Nowhere, Selma, Dear White People). Jenna Wortham: Morgan, not only do you have an incredible radio voice, you really do, it’s really easy to listen to you! But the things you’re speaking about are just so interesting that we sometimes forget how important a soundtrack is. And I don’t mean a collection of songs that accompany a film, but just that audio landscapes define and accompany and inform us. It matters when you’re walking down the street and you hear that summer song or you’re in church and you hear a particular hymn— Morgan Rhodes: Right, right! JW: The way we experience… I think we’re so used to taking in information visually that we forget how important sound is— MR: Right, right! JW: And how that is shaping us at the same time. So, it’s really incredible to hear you speak on it, basically. MR: Thank you! JW: Of course. Do you feel like a music historian? Because as much as you are a curator and a supervisor and a selector and all of these things, you really are an archive. You have all of this knowledge, it’s very contained, but it is a very rich repository. Do you feel that way? Do you feel like a keeper of sound, so to speak? MR: Um…that’s nice! I’d like to be. I’d like to be a keeper of sounds. I hope to be a historian. I think there’s ethnomusicologists out there that are doing great work as music historians. I think I’m on a music reconnaissance mission. I’m just digging and searching and finding and I’m looking for you. If you’re a brand new indie artist and you’re hanging out on SoundCloud, I’m listening and I’m looking for you. If you’re an old blues artist and you’re recording is real scratchy and the quality is poor and you don’t think there’s anyone… this person had a great hit and no one remembers that, I’m looking for you. And so I do feel like, I don’t know, some sort of person on a music expedition. And it’s so much for me. I know it’s really geeky but it’s so much fun. [laughs] JW: Of course! MR: So that’s how I feel about that.…

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All That Glitters Is Gold

Asiyami “Gold” Wekulom is more than just a muse. The millennial art director’s Instagram page functions as a virtual mood board, with colorful snapshots of dream destinations, positive mantras and rich, international cuisines. Often, you’ll catch her modeling designs from her clothing line, A.Au, in front of backdrops the shades of Pantone palettes, serving endless inspiration to more than 100,000 followers who think of her as a sister. What they may miss, though, are the shards of life-altering experiences that inspire her artful eye.

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Tanzania On My Mind

In many ways this trip was decided for me. A cosmic blend of long-time desires, creative alignment and meaningful relationships positioned me for this opportunity. I was raised by a strong black man and trailblazing white woman, and since I was young I knew that I would visit Africa at some point. I never forced it. I trusted that the timing would align with the purpose when it was right.

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