Wednesday, December 14, 2011

The Astronomical Kid, talent has not age limit ...brings act to Detroit!

If you are a fan of X-Factor then you know what I am talking about when I say that I am an ASTROnaut!  I watched the reality/talent show a few times in seasons past but not nearly as much as this current season...all because of one of the most original talented lil' kids that I have ever seen.

The Astronomical Kid (aka Astro, aka CKO, coldest kid out) who hails Brooklyn, NYC blew audiences away with his lyrics, panache and humility.  And he's only a tween! 

But X-Factor didn't make this talent up.  He's the product of years in the making, and a ton of hard work has gone into getting him to the top 3 in the reality show.  His first video, Stop Looking at My Mom, has almost 500,000 hits on Youtube.  He's ... well, Astronomical!  

If you have never heard of Astro and are an aspiring rapper, a music lover or a just a fan of young fresh talent, I've posted a view videos.  

Ok, so Astro is bringing his talent to Detroit ... here's the press release and flyer!

(For Immediate Release)

He writes his own rhymes, performs with the confidence of a music industry veteran, and can teach a few “kids” a thing or two about humility.  After a recent blow up during a live performance on X-Factor the future-icon sucked up his youthful pride and apologized as well as managed to cover one of the most popular Jay-Z beats of 2010 (“Show Me What You Got”).  Astronomical Kid is currently in the midst of rumors that he’s signed to top record label Roc Nation, which hasn’t been confirmed by founder Jay-Z, however this information hasn’t been denied either.  As the first hip hop contestant to reach the final four of any major talent show, this Kid has star power.

Which explains why the Y-Arts bringing his tons of talent to Detroit this winter via a partnership with Y-Arts and True2U Magazine.  That’s right! The Astronomical Kid is bringing his solar sized performance to Detroit.

The Y-Arts team has been devoted to building community involvement through public enrichment.  The non-profit organization has been recognized as a creator of outlets for artists and youth and maintaining partnerships with community organizations and businesses.  Y Arts along with True2UMagazine join forces in their mission to inspire and promote positive events in Detroit.  Launched in August 2011, True2UMagazine is a local publication with a calling.  Editor and event producer, Terasia Collins puts it plain and simple “we eat, drink and dream community.”  This brings us back to The Astronomical Kid, who writes lyrics that are as uplifting as they are upbeat, usually, in hip-hop, you get one or the other.
The Party also features Detroit rapper Lil Xae ..
who's a friend of the Black And The City Blog

The Astronomical Kid will perform along with some of metro-Detroit’s child wonders during the first ever Astronomical Skate Jam at Northland Skating Rink on December 29, 2011 from 2:30pm-5:30pm.  This event will be a skating party, performance and a chance for the community to come out, check out local entertainment and a rising recording artists on a personal level.  Parents and fans can purchase tickets now via 
AstroInDetroit.Eventbrite.com.  Tickets are $10 to $25 and expected to sell out fast.
Event is brought to you by True2U Magazine & Y- Arts!

Get your tics!


Saturday, December 3, 2011

City Ties: Where is Bianca Jones?

Everyone knows that I am a Detroit, tried and true.  And I will defend my City as best I can but this story really hit close to home, mostly because it happened literally RIGHT around the corner from where I lived in Detroit for almost 20 years.
Have you seen Bianca Jones?
Detroit's Northend community has been stricken with rumors of drug related crime, prostitution and bad property management.  But one thing that I refuse to believe is that this neighborhood is home to child kidnappers and young men that hurt children.  I know a lot of guys on the 'End, and they all have children, they may be a little down on their luck, but they are young fathers, they are cousins and half of them are hood educators.

Just yesterday a two-year old girl by the name of Bianca Jones was kidnapped-in-haste.  Her father was carjacked and it just so happened that innocent Bianca was in the backseat.  The car was found moments later, however, Bianca wasn't inside.  An Amber Alert was issued all over Detroit (and hopefully Michigan).  But after living on the 'End, walking three blocks a day down Hague St. to Woodward to catch my bus to go to Cass Tech, or walking to the cornerstore on Clay and Oakland I have never seen a more hidden community love.  People from the 'End will stop a drug deal to tell some kids to quite playing in the street, they will halt a whole party to pull a blunt out the pregnant chicks hand (bare with me), these people understand right from wrong.  I've seen momma's look down the barrels of guns pointed at their sons, I've seen young girls making ends meet to support their children, people have come and gone out of the 'End, but the experience still stays.

I hope the community bands together and talks to the police in efforts to find this poor little angel.  I know that Northendians, as we call ourselves, don't have the best history with law enforcement, but those things aside, the sense of family is so strong that maybe, just maybe someone will come forth.

Below you'll find some information on how to identify Bianca and provide any tips to the appropriate people.  All tips are anonymous.
The suspect is a black male, 25-30 years old with a medium complexion and approximately 6 feet tall weighing 185 pounds. He was wearing a black shirt, black pants and needs a shave. He was also wearing a brown and black baseball cap.

Bianca Jones was wearing a purple jacket with gold trimming, pink tights and pink shoes. She is described as being 2 foot five inches tall, weighing 25 pounds and having a light complexion.
If you have information about this alert please call (313) 596-1340 or Crime Stoppers at (800) Speak-Up.

Be peaceful you all, and Pray to God Almighty that Bianca is returned.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

The Shrine: Fela Kuti meets Notorious BIG in Detroit Performance

It was less than three years ago when heavy weight black celeb power couples Jay-Z and Beyonce and Will and Jada Smith announced their interest in funding the Broadway breakout of FELA! The production shed tons of American light on just who Fela Kuti was, how he influenced African culture and what his music represented.  

Myself, I was only re-introduced to this magnificent individual, musician and activist via a close friend who grew up with his music, just as I did with Nina Simone and the Clark Sisters. 

Every country has their icon, every country has recognized artists that guide their culture, create a combined effort via their lyrics.  In America and around the world we share people like Michael Jackson, Madonna and Beyonce while in Canada they love that Kylie chick and in South America, Shakira is surprisingly still big...nevertheless the type of stardom that these people receive isn't recognized from people from Africa...I mean, we have Akon, but there are large musical movements that go on and end without any reference via the mainstream media.  

Fela was an artist that transferred his music from generation to countryside and back.  

He commanded stadium-sized crowds and each show seemed to go on and get as wild as everyone things Woodstock was...honestly to compare Woodstock to a Fela concert is like comparing your 6-year old birthday party to the Dallas State Fair. 

A friend of mine is in the processes of bringing Fela's music to Detroit via a documentary comparing this African diaspora staple to one of hip hops greatest, Christopher "BIGGIE" Wallace.  Check out more information below the pic!

The Shrine, a multimedia and soundtrack infused event celebrating the lives of Fela Kuti and Notorious B.I.G.  Sankofa El-Afi Tapfuma, uses the lives of Fela Anikulapo Kuti and Christopher ‘Notorious B.I.G.’ Wallace to evoke the importance of self-dependency.
The Shrine the documentary, which is due out in the first quarter of 2012 and filmed by Gratiot Film’s Ian Harris, will take you through the lives of Kuti and Wallace, and reveal their struggle within a systematic oppressed society, and the empowerment they created for themselves to become wealthy, successful  entities in their communities.
 A celebratory event for the lives of Kuti and Wallace, will take place at the Jazz CafĂ© inside the Music Hall Center for Performing Arts on Dec. 8th 2011, with a 20 minute video presentation of excerpts from the documentary, a dance performance by Wild Spirit Dance Company, and special guest performance by Adeboye Adegbenro ,Leader of "ODU Afrobeat Orchestra" and Lead vocalist and saxophonist for “African Assembly”, who appeared regularly  with Fela and the Egypt 80 band throughout the late 80's.
The event is being hosted by Heart Healers and Shameless Plug with sounds by DJ Kofa, Nation and DJ Espy.  

Event Start Time: 8:00PM – 12:00AM
Admission: $5 and $7 w/ FELA B.I.G. Mix CD produced by DJ Kofa.
Special performances by: Wild Spirit Dance Company, and special guest performance by Adeboye Adegbenro ,Leader of "ODU Afrobeat Orchestra"
If you would like to find out more about the documentary or the event, or would like to interview Sankofa El-Afi Tapfuma, please contact Sankofa (313-685-5245).