ARMSTRONG  Together  is Oh So Splenderifficly
Divine -- Music You Gotta Have on Verve Records
By: Gatsby Melodi'
ABBEY LINCOLN Returns With Another Hit
Spiritually Titled "It's Me"
By: Gatsby Melodi'
CARL THOMAS "Let's Talk About It" Debuts At #2 on
R&B/Hip-Hop Chart #4 On Pop Chart
After a three year absence from
the music scene, Bad Boy
Records singer - songwriter
has returned with his
Abbey Lincoln always means
the lyrics she sings. A dramatic
performer whose
interpretations are full of truth
and insight, and her latest cd
spiritually titled "It's Me", on
Getting Ella Fitzgerald and Louis
Armstrong together in a studio at the
frantic peak of their respective
careers  probably was not an easy
tour-de-force back in 1956, but
sophomore CD "Let's Talk About It", entering
Billboard's R&Band Hip-Hop Albums chart at #2, and
Top 200 Albums chart in the #4 position this week.
The album is the highly anticipated follow-up to his
2000 debut, "Emotional", which established Thomas
as a stand-out in the arena of R&B male singers.

His newest single, 'Make It Alright', is receiving solid
airplay and generating requests at radio stations
across the country.

"Let's Talk About It" is Thomas' second Top 10 debut
and is Bad Boy's fifth Top 10 debut since inking a deal
with Universal Records in 2003, and already looks as
promising as its platinum predecessor which peaked
at the #9 position on Billboard's Top 200 Album charts.

Thomas didn't alter the formula for "Let's Talk About It",
once again teaming up with Sean "P. Diddy" Combs,
label-mate Mario Winans, Mike City, Just Blaze and
Deric "D-Dot" Angelettie for this CD, and continues to
deliver fresh but nostalgic sultry ballads with poignant
lyrics with his soulful vocals.

Fans recently caught Carl Thomas performing his new
son on Soul Train. Currently Thomas performs spot
dates throughout the country.
the Verve label is further testament.  I say
spiritually, because it is the title cut which offers
the guts and soul of its entirety. The song 'It's Me'
is not a jazz cut but instead is the traditional
Christian song sung in church on Sundays, "It's
me It's me It's Me Oh Lord Standing in the need
of prayer" with additional lyrics from Lincoln.  

A few months ago I interviewed Abbey Lincoln
after her performance at the
Blue Note, during
which she told me in her dressing room, that
she is choosy about the songs she gives words
to assuring the proper emotional intensity she
feels necessary.  

I also learned that Lincoln had been involved in a
near fatal vehicle accident that evening on her
way to the
Blue Note gig.  According to her
companion, they were traveling  by limousine
through Central Park from Lincoln's apartment to
Blue Note, when the limousine suddenly hit a
brick wall when exiting Central Park. Lincoln did
go on stage that evening. She opened the set  
with 'Skylark', just as this cd opens. She ended
that performance with 'They Call It Jazz', the 5th
cut on this cd, and like that night, it maintains its
magic and wonderful appeal. She wrote music
and words to other notable tracks, 'Love Is
Made", and 'Can You Dig it".
obviously today their stardom is a license to mint
money, and this collection is certain to please dinner
parties of all age groups across the globe, in any
language or social setting. It is tunes like those on this
cd that endowed these two to share a strategic
triumph carrying them out of the jazz clubs into the
best showrooms and concert venues show business
could offer.

It is said today that one show is enough, but imagine
their grueling schedules crowed with tedious travel
and endless bookings of two or three gigs a night, like
at the Waldorf in
New York and the Chez Paree in

Each artist is said to always have been racing for the
next show. Reportedly, a concert requiring Ella's
performance at the Hollywood Bowl brought her to Los
Angeles, while at the same time Armstrong and his
group had worked their way west from New York, and
he got added to the Hollywood Bowl package.

It was the occasion for Ella and Louis to be
spectacular together. The artist are doing it their way.  
The cover is as simple and spare as the music inside.
On the cover they appear utterly without pretense or
decoration. Ella in a loose cotton dress, Louis with
white socks curled down to his ankles. This ground
breaking release presents them as they'd never been
heard before. These are the tunes that breathed life in
to Verve Records; cuts like, 'Can't We Be Friends',
'April In Paris', 'Moonlight In Vermont' 'Cheek to Cheek'
and 'The Nearness of You',  to name a few of the
eleven tracks on "Ella and Louis" on Verve label.
MARIO WINANS Dominates Charts With Smash Hit "I Don't Wanna Know" Featuring Enya & P. Diddy
By: Gatsby Melodi'
Bad Boy Records' newest star MARIO WINANS (Vickie Winans son)  is on the rise with
his smash run-away hit "I Don't Wanna Know", featuring Enya & Broadway's newest star
P. Diddy.  The song has remained a top 10 hit at radio for weeks and continues to climb
the charts this week to #3 on
Billboard's Hot 100 Singles and R&B/Hip-Hop. The video
is also a Top 10 hit at
MTV and BET, and just added to VH1 and FUSE. The song is a
touching tune about a man dealing with his girlfriend's infidelity, and  
From the Gay Clubs of Miami Beach to Billboard
Dance Charts To Jazz With "
The Nearness of You"
By: Gatsby Melodi'
is the 1st release from the singer/songwriter/musician/producer's April 20th release date CD titled "Hurt No
More". Not only has the popular song found success at the radio level,
The Detroit Free Press praises
Mario Winans as a "musical wonder".  "Hurt No More" includes guest appearances by Loon, Foxy Brown,
Slim (112) and Black Rob, and showcases Winans many talents as musician on drums, piano and
keyboard, and Winans produced the entire CD and co-wrote all of the songs.

Mario Winans nimble production talents and thoughtful lyricism have worked magic for respected artists
that reads like a nomination list on Grammy night,
Mary J. Blige, Whitney Houston, R. Kelly, Jennifer Lopez,
Brian McKnight,
P. Diddy, and of course his mom on her steamy CD "Bringing It All Together" on Verity
Records. "For me, composing music has always been about passion and feeling", says Mario, who credits
his mom for getting him involved in production.  "My mom brought home a room full of recording
equipment. I just taught myself how to operate every machine in there. And from then on, I was making
beats constantly.

"Hurt No More" is soul music that bridges the gap between the hard-edged flavor of modern day R&B
music and the honest, vulnerable passion in the music of years past.  "This record is about relationships,
pure and simple. We all have hearts. Sometimes we have to look deeper into what we're saying and doing
to the people we care about. At the bottom of the fights, it's usually always something deeper",  says Mario.

My favorite cut on the CD is 'Disbelief', a modernized mid-temp with delicate keys throughout. Mario's silky
voice weaves in and out of the track with ease, lending credence to the painful lyrics about a vacillating

"I've been in a lot of the experiences on this record", says Mario. "And I can talk about them. I can sing about
them. As long as I'm making people feel, I'm doing what I was put here by God to do."
NICOLE HENRY is a name you will
hear over again and again. This
lovely, glamorous woman is
already South Florida's favorite
singer, actress and host.
She is poised to attain national and international
stardom. Her heartfelt honesty deliverance, and
knockout looks have endeared her to audiences, and
now Nicole's debut album,"The Nearness Of You" is
destined to propel her to stardom.

Originally from Bucks County, Pennsylvania, Nicole
attended University of Miami on a full academic
scholarship majoring in architecture, switching to
advertising and theater performance after two years.
While in school Nicole recorded several dance hits,
including 'Miracle' which remained on the Billboard
Dance charts for eight weeks. After graduation, Nicole
embarked on a successful acting career leading up to
national commercials for Verizon Wireless, Amtrak, Air
Jamaica, Hershey's, and SEARS.

Her first professional singing experience was in the
gay dance clubs of Miami Beach.   The album begins
with a sensual languid version of Gershwin's
'Summertime', followed by 'Can't Help Lovin' Dat Man'
and 'Old Black Magic'.  Other strong standout cuts are
Brenda Russell's 'Get Here'.,and she delivers a
tinging on 'Imagine".  

"The Nearness Of You" for Banister Records, features
Nicole Henry, vocals; Mike Orta, piano; Paul
Shewchuk, upright bass; Danny Burger, drums. Visit
her website
Suze Orman Nominated for two Daytime
Emmy Awards to Be Broadcast live on
Friday, May 21st
PATTIE LABELLE Back On Top With "Timeless
 First Studio Album In Four Years
Soul diva Patti LaBelle enjoys one of the
longest-lived careers in contemporary
music, notching hits in a variety of
sounds ranging from girl group pop to
space-age funk to lush
A rich, abundant future can be
yours when you think about
money in the right way!  Suze
Orman has been called “a
force in  the world of  personal
ballads. Born Patricia Holt in Philadelphia on October
4, 1944, she grew up singing in a local Baptist choir,
and in 1960 teamed with friend Cindy Birdsong to form
a group called the Ordettes. A year later, following the
additions of vocalists
Nona Hendryx and Sarah Dash,
the group was rechristened the Blue Belles; with
producer Bobby Martin at helm, they scored a Top 20
pop and R&B hit in 1962 with the single "I Sold My
Heart to the Junkman," subsequently hitting the charts
in 1964 with renditions of "Danny Boy" and "You'll
Never Walk Alone."

By 1973,
Labelle had gone glam, taking the stage in
wildly theatrical, futuristic costumes; a year later they
became the first African-American act ever to appear at
New York's Metropolitan Opera House, a landmark
performance which also introduced their lone
chart-topping single, the Allen Toussaint-produced
classic "Lady Marmalade." However, after two more
albums -- 1975's Phoenix and the following year's
Chameleon -- Labelle disbanded, and its namesake
mounted a solo career, issuing her eponymous debut
in 1977. In addition to subsequent releases including
1979's It's Alright with Me and 1980's Released,
LaBelle also turned to acting, co-starring in a 1982
Broadway revival of Your Arms to Short to Box with God.

Upon signing with the Philadelphia International label,
LaBelle scored a number one R&B hit with "If You Only
Knew," from 1983's I'm in Love Again. Two years later,
she reached the pop Top 20 with her Beverly Hills Cop
soundtrack contribution "New Attitude." Her
subsequent MCA debut, 1986's The Winner in You,
went platinum on the strength of the Burt
Bacharach-penned "On My Own," a duet with Michael
McDonald, while the follow-up, 1989's Be Yourself,
featured a pair of cuts written by Prince. 1991's Burnin'
earned a Grammy for Best Female R&B Performance.
LaBelle recorded less and less frequently in the years
to follow, however, in 1995 publishing her
autobiography Don't Block the Blessings: Revelations
of a Lifetime. She returned five years later to release
When A Woman Loves.

"Timeless Journey" for DefSoul Records has 13 tracks
and returns Patti to R&B. Guest artists are Carlos
Santana, Shelia E, Andy Vargas, La India and Kenneth
finance” and a “one-woman financial
advice powerhouse” by
USA Today . She is
the author of four consecutive New York
Times bestsellers, "The Laws of Money,
The Lessons of Life", "The Road to
Wealth", "The Courage to Be Rich; and The
9 Steps to Financial Freedom", and the
national bestsellers, "Suze Orman's
Financial Guidebook and You've Earned It,
Don't Lose It" .
Suze's latest book, "The Laws of Money,
The Lessons of Life"  (The Free Press;
March 2003), was launched with a cross-
country bus tour that took the author to 21
cities as part of her groundbreaking
grassroots campaign to help people
across America gain control of their money.
Instantly hitting the New York Times list, it
also appeared on the bestseller lists of
Publishers Weekly , Business Week , The
Wall Street Journal , USA Today , the
Chicago Tribune , The Boston Globe , and
the Los Angeles Times
. The book already
has 600,000 copies in print.

Suze has been nominated for two Daytime
Emmy Awards for her most recent PBS
The Laws of Money, The Lessons
of Life
, which she wrote, co-produced, and
hosted. The nominations come in the
Outstanding Service Show and
Outstanding Service Show Host categories.
The 31 st Annual Daytime Emmy Awards
will be broadcast live on Friday, May 21,
2004 , from Radio City Music Hall
JOE CARTER - "Two For Two"
Guitar virtuoso Joe Carter, who first earned
widespread attention in the jazz world with his debut
disc of duets with master bassist Rufus Reid, and the  
critically acclaimed albums with veteran horn players
Art Farmer, Lee Konitz and Cecil Payne for the past 15
years with explorations into Brazilian jazz, has  
returned to his original duo format on "2 For 2", a
collaboration with world renowned Trio de Paz bassist
Nilson Matta.  The duo display an astonishing
cooperative spirit using celebrated and lesser known
classics from some of Brazil's finest composers
(including Antonio Carlos Jobim, Baden Powell and
Noel Rosa), and modern original compositions by
Carter, Matta and Mauricio Einhorn, showcasing the
guitarist quietly intense approach of melodic
improvisation on a recording of rare beauty.

The disc opens with Feito de Oracao, the first of two
compositions by the great Brazilian composer, Noel
Rosa.  Carter's finger picked nylon string guitar rings
out on his relaxed reading of the charming classic
melody wound around Matta's supple basslines, their
interplay and occasional exchange of roles building to
an intensity that is powerful even in its restrain and is
characteristic of the date as a whole.
HARRIET D. FOY Is Phenomenal as Principal
Rosie, in "MAMMA MIA"
Now on Broadway
(L to R) Tamara Bernier, Dee
Hoty and Harriet D. Foy as
Rosie in 'MAMMA MIA" on
Broadway  Photo: Joan Marcus
Television's JUDGE GREG MATHIS Is Hailed As Mentor And 'Most Admired' Judge - He Humbly
Responds Saying "I Am Very  Serious About Making A Difference In The World"
By: Gatsby Melodi'
The real-life story of Judge Mathis is heartwarming and inspirational. Greg Mathis was
a gang member who dropped out of school, was in and out of jail and then overcame
these adversities to become the youngest judge in Michigan history.  The Judge's
personal story is now the subject of a book, "Inner City Miracle," which was released in
October 2002 by Ballantine/One World Books. The success of the book earned Mathis
the prestigious Blackboard Non-fiction Book of the Year Award in May 2003.   Mathis
has been called upon as a regular contributor to national television programs, including
"Larry King Live," "Politically Incorrect" and CNN's "Talk Back Live," to discuss his
opinions on issues of the day, including terrorism and national security, unique
sentencing and Affirmative Action.
"Every Friday Night" She Meet Men Looking For Her
Prince Charming Before Her 30th Birthday While
Armed With Granny's Words Of Wisdom
By: Gatsby Melodi'
Adored and admired, Greg Mathis has quickly become a household name with a broad and loyal following.
His growing popularity led to a featured role on The WB sitcom
"The Steve Harvey Show" during the May 2001
sweeps in which he played himself. He has also had major media exposure, appearing on "The Tonight
Show with Jay Leno," the "Today" morning show, "The Rosie O'Donnell Show," "The Other Half, "The Caroline
Rhea Show," TNT's "Listen Up! Charles Barkley with Ernie Johnson" and "BET Tonight with Ed Gordon," while
being featured in People magazine as well as national and local press across the country.
First time author RITTA McLAUGHLIN's grandmother
gave her more than enough pearls of wisdom to string
a necklace; pearls that she would later come to
understand and appreciate while rebounding from a
broken heart.  Vowing to go on a date every
Friday night during the year leading up to
her 30th birthday, Ritta has composed a
witty chronicle of the ups and downs of
dating in the NYC entitled "Every Friday
Night: My Year of Dating Misadventures".
Her search for Mr. Right became an
When he is not on the bench, Mathis makes it a point to give back to the community and to
those in need of guidance.   "I hit the streets helping others by joining the fight for various
causes drawing national attention as well as supporters", Mathis reveals.
Judge Mathis has been named the new spokesman for Literacy Volunteers of America in Detroit, joining the
fight against adult literacy in Detroit, helping raise awareness of the literacy problem and encourage people
who need help.

In addition to starring in his own television show, during the show's second season, Judge Mathis broke new
ground when he took his show on the road and starred in the critically acclaimed stage production "Been
There Done That" which played to sold out audiences in 29 cities and received national press attention. "Been
There Done That" is a musical drama based on Mathis' life designed to inspire men and women to overcome
life's obstacles. Along with Judge Mathis, the play featured gospel music icon Fred Hammond, Phyllis Yvonne
Stickney and was written by Teresa Coleman-Wash. Playing a role parallel to his own life-story enabled
Mathis another opportunity to help change lives.  

“It pains me to think of all the hurt that I caused my neighborhood, my community, my family,” said Mathis.
“That’s why I’ve made a lifetime commitment to redeeming myself and changing my life and helping to inspire
other street youth to redeem themselves and change their lives. Now, with a daily television show, I hope to
be able to reach even more people with my story and, hopefully, make an even bigger difference in the lives of

Judge Mathis is committed to helping troubled youth in and out of the courtroom. In 1986, Mathis and his wife
co-founded Young Adults Asserting Themselves (Y.A.A.T), a non-profit youth agency that serves thousands of
young people. The foundation counsels youth from the ages of 17-25 about career and job opportunities,
provides job training, and offers school and job placement services. The foundation has also opened four pre-
schools in Detroit. In his various fundraising efforts, Mathis has raised and donated over $2 million for a
variety of civil rights, political, church and youth causes.

In 1997, Mathis’ life was the subject of a musical called “Inner City Miracle,” written and directed by playwright
Ron Milner.   Judge Mathis is married and a father of four children.
often funny and sometimes poignant journey of
sell-discovery and self-love. The journal she kept of
these experiencesbecame the foundation for this
book.  RITTA, a native of Washington, DC, grew up in
Maryland's Prince George County. She graduated from
the prestigious Groton School, and attended Vassar
where she studied Public Policy. She received a
Masters Degree in Urban Policy and Management
from the New School and currently is working as a
high-powered investment banker at a prominent Wall
street firm.  All it all, Ritta says she learned, "finding
love means loving yourself first".
DUKE ELLINGTON  (A Look at Jazz &
Improvisation in American Art)  May 21–July 30
Exhibition Includes Sale of White Baby Grand Piano on
which Duke Ellington Composed Classics 1928-50s

Picture Duke Ellington sitting elegantly at a white baby
grand piano with the beginning notes of Mood Indigo
flowing freely from his heart to his fingers to the piano keys
and eventually to you.  It looks like a work of art and feels
like magic.  Now, picture that same white piano sitting
regally in your music room.

It sounds like a dream, but the piano could be yours when
Michael Rosenfeld Gallery, 24 West 57th Street in New York
ELLINGTON (A Look at Jazz & Improvisation in American
Art) May 21 – July 30.  Highlighting the exhibition is the sale
of the Kramer white baby grand piano on which
Ellington composed dozens of jazz classics including Mood
Indigo, Sophisticated Lady, Caravan, Creole Love Call, The
Mooche, In A Sentimental Mood, Do Nothin’ Till You Hear
from Me and Harlem.

After four decades as the focal point of
compositions, two decades with Ellington’s only sibling,
Ruth Ellington, and two decades with nephew Stephen D.
James, the instrument will be on view to the public for the
first time.  The piano has a $1,000,000 value and will be
available for the general public to view and purchase
throughout the exhibition.  

Michael Rosenfeld Gallery hours are 10:00am - 6:00pm,
Tuesday through Saturday.  A fully illustrated color catalogue
will accompany the exhibition.  For more information, please
contact halley k harrisburg, Director, Michael Rosenfeld
Gallery at (212) 247-0082.
and Alfredo de la Fe
Macaulay Culkin Returns with Comedy
"SAVED" From United Artists Opens May
28th In Theaters
The Hostos Center for
the Arts & Culture will
present a gala concert
celebrating the 40th
anniversary of Orquesta
Broadway, the
legendary charanga
band headed by
Good girl Mary (Jena Malone) and her
domineering best friend Hilary Faye (Mandy
Moore) are starting their senior year at the top
of the social food chain at American Eagle
Christian High School, until Mary's boyfriend
tells her he thinks he might be gay. When
Jesus appears to her in a vision, she heeds
his message to do everything she can to
help him, but she ends up pregnant.

Suddenly Mary begins to question everything
she's believed in, and her friends turn
against her.  Now an outcast, Mary finds
herself alone until she's befriend by the
school's other pariahs, wheelchair bound
Roland (Macaulay Culkin); the principal's
skater heartthrob son Patrick; and the
school's lone Jew named Cassandra (Eva

In this sweetly subversive comedy, a group of
outsiders band together to navigate the
treacherous halls of high school and make it
to graduation, ultimately learning more about
themselves, finding faith in unexpected
places, and realizing what it truly means to
be "SAVED". The film is Directed by Brian
Dannelly, and Written by Brian Dannelly &
Michael Urban.
maestro Eddy Zervigón, one of the icons of
contemporary Latin music. The concert is scheduled
for Saturday, May 22 at 7:30 p.m., Hostos Center for
the Arts & Culture, 450 Grand Concourse (corner of
149th Street) in The Bronx.
Also on the bill for the evening will be guest soloists,
Pupi Legarreta and Alfredo de la Fe, two of the
powerhouse violinists of the charanga tradition.

Admission to the concert is $25 and $20 with 20
percent discounts for senior citizens and students with
valid ID's. The box office and information number is
718-518-4455. Visa, MasterCard and American
Express accepted. Transportation: IRT 2, 4, 5 and Bx1,
Bx19 to Grand Concourse and 149 Street.
MARIA SHRIVER Pens New Book "What's
Happening To Grandpa"
About One
Family Coping With Alzheimer's Disease
From New York Times bestselling
poignant and compassionate story
about one family coping with Alzheimer's
disease and memory loss, titled "What's
Happening To Grandpa?", by Maria
Shriver and Sandra Speidel.
KWAME From Donald Trump's Highly Successful Television
"The Apprentice" Talks About Success and Influence
What is your definition of
Success to me is simply
being happy with yourself and
doing more good than evil
along the way. Although we
all have various lofty
professional and personal
"What's Happening To Grandpa" Written by Maria Shriver
Kate has always adored her grandpa's storytelling—but lately
he's been repeating the same stories again and again. One
day, he even forgets Kate's name. Her mother's patient
explanations open Kate's eyes to what so many of the elderly
must confront: Alzheimer's disease and other forms of
memory loss. Determined to support her grandfather, Kate
explores ways to help him—and herself—cope by creating a
photo album of their times together, memories that will remain
in their hearts forever. With special insight derived from her
own father's struggle with Alzheimer's, Maria Shriver offers a
touching and optimistic story that encourages awareness,
acceptance, and dialogue among family and friends.
Kwame Jackson
goals, in the end, what matters is being pleased with the man
in the mirror.When it's all said and done, I would hope that
success for me includes a feeling of true self-actualization and
fulfillment accompanied by the financial freedom, soundness
of body and mind, and personal wisdom to control my daily
destiny. If all of this comes along with a "Trumpesque" empire,
then so be it!

Who do you admire most (personally and/or professionally)?
On the personal side, I would have to say my Mother, Marilyn,
who died of cancer at age 41 when I was 15 years old. My
mother started from humble beginnings to go on and become
the first person in my family to attend college, as a scholarship
student of Howard University. After becoming a CPA, she
started her own practice in Charlotte, NC and was a
successful business woman and role model for
professional/personal determination. I like to think that if my
mom could instill all that in me in the limited 15 years of my life
that she had to work with, then she did a pretty damn good job
of giving me a solid head start! Thanks Mom for showing me
the way!

Professionally, I continue to be impressed by the legacy of
unparalleled achievements that
Robert L. Johnson has left in
his wake as the first African-American Billionaire, Founder and
CEO of Black Entertainment Television, and the first
African-American owner of an NBA franchise. Mr. Johnson
exemplifies the fruition of the American Dream and a
stratospheric target for all those following in his foot steps
Catwoman is the
story of shy, sensitive
(Halle Berry),
a woman who can’t
seem to stop
apologizing for her
SEAN "P. Diddy" COMBS Introduces New Gillette M3Power
At Press Conference at Gotham Hall In New York
By: Gatsby Melodi'
own existence, and works as a graphic
designer for a mammoth cosmetics
company on the verge of releasing a
revolutionary anti-aging product.
NEW YORK May 20, 2004 - Celebrity
Sean "P. Diddy" Combs, today
became the first person chosen by Gillette  
to introduce their new
micro-powered razor, at a press
conference held at Gotham Hall 1356
(Broadway @36th) in NYC, with just about
every major print and electronic media
present; i.e., "People" magazine, "The New
York Times" CNN, ABC, CBS, NBC and
FOX, televison stations, just to name a few.

Gillette introduced him as a CEO, producer,
rap artist, fashion designer, restaurant
owner, movie star, marathon runner, father
and Broadway star, calling him    "the
ultimate  power  player."
When Patience inadvertently happens
upon a dark secret that her employer is
hiding, she finds herself in themiddle of
a corporate conspiracy.  In a mystical
twist of fate, she is transformed into a
woman with the strength, speed, agility
and ultra-keen senses of a cat. With her
newfound prowess and feline intuition,
Patience becomes "Catwoman", a sleek
and stealthy creature balancing on the
thin line between good and bad. She’s
dangerous, elusive and untamed. Her
adventures are complicated by a
burgeoning relationship with Tom Lone
(Benjamin Bratt), a cop who has fallen
Patience, but cannot shake his
fascination with the mysterious
"Catwoman", who appears to be
responsible for a string of crime sprees
plaguing the city.
Sean Combs and
Alexander Mitchett
in Lorraine
Hansberry's 1959
classic  "A Raisin In
the Sun" currently
playing on
"They said I couldn't. But I did" Said American Idol
Winner 19 Year-old FANTASIA BARRINO From High
Point, North Carolina
By: Gatsby Melodi'
Combs entered the stage looking bling-bling with a diamond
ring on each pinky-finger, surrounded by two beautiful and
sexy female models.   He said to the crowd, "Usually I have a
go-T, but I cut it off for the show", did a one stroke downward
and  then asked us "Ya'll wanna feel?"

Gillette M3Power a MACH3 innovation is a revolutionary power
wet shaving system for men that combines break-through
blade and razor technologies with innovative engineering for a
totally new shaving experience. The M3Power razor delivers
pulses to the shaving cartridge that stimulate hair upward and
away from the skin, making it dramatically easier to shave
more thoroughly than ever before.

A Gillette representative came out and presented "P Diddy"
with his own 10-diamond-studded razor, "Ah, a woman after
my heart", he humorously interjected.

"A RAISIN IN THE SUN" was the first play written by an African-
American woman(Lorraine Hansberry)  to be produced on
Broadway,  It tells the story of a family living and struggling on
Chicago's South Side in the 1950s.  It premiered in 1959, with
Lloyd Richards directing a cast that included Sidney Poitier,
Claudia McNeil, Diana Sands,
Ruby Dee, Louis Gossett, Ivan
Dixon, Glynn Turman, John Fielder, Lonne Elder III, Ed Hall
and Douglas Turner Ward. The show ran for 530
performances and won the New York Drama Critics’ Circle
Award for Best Play.
"This is a dream come true. They said I
couldn't. But I did.", 19-year-old
FANTASIA BARRINO  told reporters
Wednesday evening with flooding tears
flowing down her beautiful face and
warm smile, after being crowned the
new American Idol, on the television
show with the same title, televised on
FOX from the Kodak Theater in
Hollywood.    No doubt this truly exciting
young discovery is destined to excel to
her place among the stars.  Family
members were seen celebrating by
doing the David Dance inside the Kodak
Theater in Hollywood, following the

"This is for all the single mothers.  You
gotta dream. You gotta do it", she
Pain and Daily Struggles Living With
MS In His Book
"Climbing Higher"
Television icon, New York
Times bestselling author
and powerful example of
the strength to overcome
Williams reveals his true
story of struggle and
American Idol
winner 19-year-old
Fantasia Barrino
triumph in this compelling memoir that
proves not only a fascinating read, but an
inspiration.In 1999, after almost twenty
years of mysterious symptoms that he
tried to ignore,
Montel Williams, a
decorated former Naval intelligence officer
and Emmy- Award-winning talk show
host, was finally diagnosed with multiple
sclerosis. Like others suffering from the
devastating and often disabling disease,
which attacks the central nervous system,
Montel was first struck with denial, fear,
depression, and anger. Next came the
emotional trial of informing friends and
family, and finally going public with the
news. What followed was a fierce
determination not to be beaten down by
MS, and to live the most vital and
productive life possible while becoming a
dedicated spokesperson and fundraiser
for the disease.

Montel Williams' "Climbing Higher" is a
penetrating and insightful look at a
remarkable man, his extraordinary career,
and the illuminating life that graced him
with strong values, courage, and wisdom.
Now he shares that wisdom in this
uplifting book on the divergent roads a life
can take, and recounts his own
resourceful approach to the challenges he
has faced. Deeply personal, "Climbing
Higher" is as straight-forward, honest,
inspiring, and motivating as its author.

His roundtable discussion at the end of
the book was a stroke of genius, and  very
informative. It made the best argument for
legalization of medical marijuana

In his book, Montel talks about how he
has dealt with his pain. He had the option
to have any pain medication he wanted,
but he did not want to become addicted to
drugs such as oxycontin or morphine.
Instead, he chose to use medicinal
marijuana. He feels that marijuana should
be legalized for medical purposes only.
Through his treatment with marijuana he
has been able to cope with the pain and
continue to go to work and make a
difference in peoples' lives. He talks about
wanting to commit suicide.
"Thank you so much -- I broke my shoe," said Fantasia, wiping
her eyes. "You know what, I've been through some things, but
I've worked hard to get where I'm at. Thank you all so much,
man."  A record number of votes had been called in to make
the selection: 65 million.
June 1st  BLUE TOUCAN MUSIC Launches New
American-Brazilian Jazz Label With  
Fantasia, 19, had been applauded for her strong voice
practically every step of the competition, though twice this
season she was nearly voted off in favor of more attractive
singers -- albeit ones with weaker lungs.

"I Believe." is the song she sang into the hearts of many. Look
for product out from Fantasia, by October this year.
Blue Toucan Music has announced a new record label with
the release of debut recording by three rising stars from the
New York Jazz scene,  vocalist/guitarist/composer MARCO
FIGUEIRA; singer/songwriter KERRY LINDER; and
pianist/composer GLAUCO SAGEBIN.  
'"Brazilliance" the debut recording by the
brilliant singer/guitarist/songwriter MARCO
FIGUEIRA, was born in the small town of
Carangola in the state of Minas Gerais in
Brazil, where he began singing and playing
guitar at 8. He studied guitar and voice
formally as a teenager in Rio de Janeiro.
When did you first start to sing?
When I was about 5 years old.

Do you have any formal singing
No. It all came from the man, God.

What other talents do you have?

If you don’t make it on
AMERICAN IDOL, what will you
I’m gonna keep on fighting for my

What are your personal goals in
To be a star before I die.

What is your favorite type of
I like it all.

What is your favorite song to
“Change Gonna Come.”

Favorite male pop artist?

Favorite female pop artist?

Favorite album of all time?
Aretha Franklin.
Who in the music world do you think
your style is most like?
No one. I try to be Fantasia.

Most embarrassing moment?
When I was going up to sing, I fell
down and people started laughing.

If you couldn’t sing, which talent
would you most like to have?
I would like to act some.

What has been your proudest
moment in life so far?
Having my child.

What is your definition of an
First of all, an Idol is someone that
you can look up to, someone who
carries themself in a way that people
will look up to them.

Why do you want to be an
I feel like it’s my time and I’m ready
for America.

What advice do you have for other
Be yourself.
A resident of NYC since 1988, he has become a familiar
face on the city's Brazilian Jazz scene, developing his talent
through studies with guitarists Romero Lubambo, Paul
Meyers and Paulo Andre' Tavares. Figueira's burgeoning
talent is bolstered by Tavares superb guitar and alluring
arrangements throughout the disc, standout cuts are
'Romance', 'Corcovado' 'Minha' and 'Aguas de Marco'.
Singer/songwriter KERRY LINDER debut is
"Sail Away With Me", a soft and gentle blend of
Vrazilian jazz and pop in the tradition of Astrud
Gilberto, Elis Regina and Joyce. Kerry grew up
in Curacao where she studied classical piano
at a young age and
exposed to the rich traditions of Afro-caribbean culture.  She
moved to the United States and earned a Master Degree in
Applied Linguistics from Georgetown University.  The singer
moves effortlessly between Portuguese and English, using
(in her own words) "
language to convey the passion of the
lyrics and heighten the  melodies of Paulo Andre'Tavares
sensitive arrangements."
Standout cuts are 'That's All' and
'God Bless The Child'
If pianist GLAUCO SAGEBIN had his choice
for the ideal business card, it would say,
Glauco Sagebin, Brazilian Jazz Pianist.”
That’s because, while he prides himself on
being a Brazilian musical artist, he hates
being confined to the stereotype of
Emmy-Winner WAYNE BRADY Entertains America But
Show In Day Time Is Cancelled He Starts National City Tour June
4th Ending September In Las Vegas at Mirage Hotel & Casino
By: J C Lee
Beyonce's Mother  Recalls
How The Road To Success Was
Stressful "
and people thought we
were nuts
By: Sarah Weinstein
Brazilian musicians, that they “must be from Rio de Janeiro
and can only play samba or Bossa Nova music
."   He’s from
the south of Brazil, Porto Alegre. His music goes further than
any stereotype. Glauco grew up listening to all the music of
Brazil, plus music from a wide range of outside sources, from
Coltrane’s jazz to Mahler’s symphonies. Glauco began his
professional career in São Paulo, Brazil as a studio musician
and composer. In 1985 he won the Gramado Brazilian Film
Festival Award for Best Original Soundtrack for Short Animated
Film, one of the most prestigious awards in Brazil for cinema.  
Glauco’s intent on this CD is showing the product of an artist
molded by both American jazz and Brazilian music, and he
does that with his band members, drummer,  Paulo Braga;
and bassist, Santi Debriano. Standout tracks are 'Villa',   'Nada
Como ter Amor', 'Laura' and 'Fascinating Rhythm'.
Wayne Brady stands out as one of television's
most rare commodities: a multi-dimensional,
natural born entertainer, yet the Emmy winning
talk show, "The Wayne Brady Show," has been
cancelled, despite its successful combination of
celebrity chat, music, comedy, human interest
and audience participation - all with a twist that
only Brady can deliver.  Well-known for his
Emmy-nominated work on ABC's "Whose Line Is
Beyonce first got her start in Houston as
one-third of the hit R&B group Destiny's
Child. But according to her mom, the
road to success hasn't been an easy

Seems like everybody is talking about
Beyonce these days, but her parents
were her first fans.

They believed in her so much that
Beyonce's father quit his job to manage
Destiny's Child while her mother,
worked long hours at her hair salon to
support the family.  Her mother recalls
that time, saying,
Wayne Brady
Anyway?," Brady is going back to what he did before, touring
nationally with his improvisational comedy/music show "Wayne
Brady and Friends," with his multiple talents garnering him an
even greater enthusiastic fan following throughout the country.
JAMIE FOXX to Star As Ray Charles In Musical
Biographical Drama
"Ray" In Theaters October 29th
From Universal Pictures
By: Gatsby Melodi'
"'The Wayne Brady Show' is different from the other shows I've
done because audiences got a chance to see the real 'Wayne in
an environment where not only do I get an opportunity to talk to
the people who I want to talk to, but also perform with many of
them," explains Brady

The creative team behind "The Wayne Brady Show" included
John Redmann ("The Rosie O'Donnell Show") and Bernie
Brillstein ("The Blues Brothers," "Prime Time Glick with Martin

Brillstein, who also  brought to television such innovative series
as "Politically Incorrect" and "Saturday Night Live," explained, "In
all my years of representing performers and producing, I find
Wayne's talent very special. Although he was new to daytime
when the talk show first launched, his outgoing personality is
perfectly suited to it."   Brady served as co-executive producer of
his show.
Born Eric Bishop December 13, 1967, in
Terrell, Texas,
Jamie Foxx said he created
his androgynous stage name after learning
that females were few in the audience and
that they therefore got preference at being
called to the microphone for an audition on
"Amateur Night".  
The absolutely brilliant scheme not only got him an audition,
but it also garnered him a part in the television show "ROC"
which lead to his multi-roles gig on the hugely successful
television show  
"In Living Color".  

The comedian said in high school he was a football
quarterback, and has a daughter born in 1995 who lives with
her mother.

One of the most anticipated films of 2004 is the forthcoming
release of
 "RAY", the never before told musical biographical
drama of American legend Ray Charles, which features  FOXX
in the central role.  
Ray Charles went blind at the age of 7,
shortly after witnessing his younger brother's accidental death.
Inspired by a fiercely independent mother who insisted he
make his own way in the world, Ray Charles found his calling
and his gift behind a piano keyboard.

"I went down to 159 pounds to do 'Ray".  I had too many
muscles to be believable",
FOXX said.  "We worked 16 hours a
day. That means 16 hours a day I was completely blind, and it
eventually took a toll me.  I began to hyperventilate. Getting into
character and making Ray  believable was hard work."

"RAY" is scheduled for release October 29, 2004, from
Universal Pictures.  It is directed by Taylor Hackford, and
written by Taylor Hackford and James L. White. The film also
Regina King, Kerry Washington, Clifton Powell, Aunjanue
Harry Lennix, Terrence Dashon Howard, Larenz Tate,
Sharon Warren.

The film reportedly runs 150 minutes.
“It was very stressful because
we went from having two really
great incomes to having one.
We had to scale down the
house. Sell the cars. It was a
really tough time for us.”
Chaka Khan's Scorchingly Soulful Voice Came First And Now
The Book -  "
Chaka! Through the Fire" by Chaka Khan
With Tonya Bolden
Tina Knowles says, “Oh yeah, people
thought we were nuts a lot more than we
did. They really thought we were crazy.”
With her dynamic 1970s funk, Chaka Khan's
powerful vocals and her outrageous stage
performances is a link between soul music and
hip-hop. To celebrate her 50th birthday, Khan has
written a breezy and entertaining autobiography, a
young singer's almost chance selection to front an
all-male band, years of bad romantic relationships
Beyonce was painfully shy, until she took
the microphone.

Tina Knowles says, “She just came alive
and just had all the confidence.  So I
was like, ‘Wow, who is that?’ We
encouraged her  because it brought out
her personality.”

But there were a lot of disappointments
along the way. Beyonce's first group lost
on "Star Search." So when Destiny's
Child formed, Beyonce's father worked
even harder – all of which was tough on
the marriage.

Tina Knowles says, “We separated
because, at that point, I felt like he was a
little too driven. I was never in doubt it
would happen, but I was just like, ‘You
can't just stop life and do this and not
take care of the family.’"

Eventually, they got back together and
soon after, Destiny's Child landed a deal
with Columbia records with “Say My
Name." And now everybody knows their
name. But even success wasn't easy.
The band regrouped several times, and
Beyonce was blamed for the breakups.

Tina Knowles says, “That was probably
one of the worst experiences of my life
because it was so untrue and she took
all the heat for everything.”

She explains, “The one thing I harp on
all the time, is to just be yourself and not
get caught up in all this stuff, because
it's fleeting, and it goes away, and at the
end of the day, you have to be happy with
who you are.”

Tina Knowles designs clothes, like the
suit Beyonce wore when she performed
at the Super Bowl.
and a final declaration of creative and personal independence.
The trajectory of Khan's highly successful career, as she
describes it, is as out of control as her feathers and sequins and
the wacky funk that marked her early hits with the band Rufus.  

To her credit she lets it all hang out, admitting, "About the only
thing I'm certain of is that my life has been a series of
`happenings' that have made me who I am."

She candidly details her drinking, drugging, overspending and
many marriages and affairs
("Chaka `United Nations' Khan.
That's what some friends called me when it came to me and

These details may be of interest only to Khan and Rufus fans, but
serious music readers will welcome Khan's first few chapters,
which give a remarkably insightful view of the connections
between political and music scenes in Khan's hometown,
Chicago during the late 1960s and early 1970s.  She grew up in
Chicago and was attracted to the entertainment scene and the
radical politics of the Black Panthers.

Khan married early to gain independence from her
mother and the freedom to pursue a career with "Ask Rufus", the
band that would give her the first real break. She went on to a
successful solo career, and remains on top over 30 years later.
From the Criminal Side of Law to the Justice Side of Law
Millions have seen him on his nationwide TV
show, dispensing justice in his own charismatic
style. But Judge Greg Mathis's own rise to
success has been a trial by fire. In this truly
candid memoir, his harrowing life on both sides
of the law is revealed for the first time.
It starts in Detroit—but far from the court where Greg would
one day preside. Raised in the hell of the Herman Garden
Projects, he grows to become a "bad-ass, cool-dressing, do-
anything gangsta." His father gone, his mother juggling two
jobs, he falls in with the Errol Flynns—"funkified English
gentlemen" in three-piece suits and Borsalino hats, urban
Robin Hoods who are truly stylish as they steal from
everyone and give to themselves.

Considered bright but incorrigible, Greg is sent to stay in his
middle-class cousin's mixed neighborhood, where he enlists
the local white youth in wrongdoing. Even jail can't keep him
from going bad again once he gets out. Then a threat to his
beloved mother causes a shaken Greg to make a promise in
a prayer to God: save my mother and I will straighten up.

To his and everyone else's surprise, he keeps his side of the
bargain. Inspired by The Autobiography of Malcolm X, working
at McDonald's by day and attending classes by night, Greg
pulls himself through high school and college and then law
school, using in positive ways the innate intelligence that
made him a master at crime. Soon he becomes the
youngest judge in Michigan history, a District Court judge
and, at last, undaunted by the odds and propelled by his
personal story, a sought-after and highly paid TV star.

In its blunt, bold, and sometimes hair-raising honesty,
InnerCity Miracle is both a cautionary and an inspiring story,
one sure to stun all those who come to Judge Mathis's TV
courtroom every day.
South African Pianist/Composer  ABDULLAH IBRAHIM
Revisited With Two New Releases From Enja Records Vaults
on Justin Time Records
"Cape Town Revisited" is a trio date with bassist,
Marcus McLaurine; drummer,  George Gray; and
ABDULLAH IBRAHIM on piano, recorded LIVE at
Spier Estate Cape Town, South Africa on
December 13, 1997.The fiery South African
trumpeter Feya Faku appears as a special guest on three tracks.  
This totally awesome recording includes the ambitious three-part
suite "Cape Town to Congo Square".   For more than thirty years,
Abdullah Ibrahim's soulful music has been moving audiences
worldwide. Its universal language results from the amalgam of
jazz, African rhythm, Arabic influences, English choral and
European romantic music filled with spiritual truth and
communicative power.

The composer's celebratory paean to the African diaspora and
cultural connection between Cape Town and New Orleans. Other
standout  well known IBRAHIM pieces heard on this homecoming
gig included are 'Water From An Ancient Well', 'Soweto', 'Song For
Sathima' and 'Tuang Guru'.
Legendary R&B Singer TEENA
Back with New Release
"LaDona" Features
Rick James, Gerald
Levert, MC Lyte and DeDe
By: Gatsby Melodi'
Legendary soul singer TEENA MARIE
released "La Dona"  May 11th for Cash
Money Classics/Universal Records. The
smooth lead single'Still In Love' retreats
back to the soulful beginnings of R&B
with a groove influenced by Al Green's hit
'What A Wonderful thing Love Is',
produced by Teena Marie and Cash
Money's in-house producer Mannie

As the first artist on Cash Money's new
imprint, Teena Marie is building a bridge
between old and new school soul
music.  Other than the first single
release, standout cuts are #5 (my fav)
'My Body's Hungry'  written by Teena
Marie and 'I Love Him Too' written by
DeDe & Teena.
The initial idea for "African Suite"  was given by
Matthias Winckelmann who had always been
sensing chamber musical and orchestral colors
The arranger's task, however, turned out to be rather complicated
because the material was notated only in fragments and had
been recorded in several very different versions over 25 years.
Some earlier attempts to bring his music into an orchestral form
were stopped for that reason.

On this basis, several sessions took place with Abdullah Ibrahim
in New York leading to a condensation that became the starting
point "African Suite". Besides common jazz harmonies, it
includes fragments of English chorals and traces of romantic era
music. Abdullah Ibrahim's piano tremolo reminds you of sounds
influenced by symphonic contexts in the works of Liszt, Beethoven
and piano arrangements of Wagner's music. Recorded with his
regular trio of bassist, Belden Bullock; drummer, George Gray,
this ambitious offering was augmented by a large string section
drawn from the Youth Orchestra of the European Community.
These orchestral re-workings of Ibrahim originals, arranged by
Daniel Schnyder, perfectly point up the evocative globalism
inherent in Ibrahim's imaginative writing, which reveals jazz and
classical influences while ultimately reflecting the pianist's South
African origins and Islamic faith.  
All tracks are standout.  On YEAH!!
RANEE LEE  Celebrates  The  Great  Canadian  Songbook  On  
Her  New Justin Time Release   "Maple Groove"
Ranee Lee's steady and lilting contralto voice
has given life to many forms of music, but it is
her jazz renderings that have struck a chord in
the souls of Canadian listeners and fans
around the world.  A prolific artist whose
talents go far beyond her singing, Lee is a composer,
playwright, television host, teacher, and award winning stage
actress who was born in Brooklyn, New York, but has made
a home, a name , and a very full and happy life for herself
and her family in Canada. Her most recent release "Maple
Groove" for
Justin-Time Records, produced by herself, Jim
West and Rick Wilkins is a surprisingly multi-faceted work
highlighting the diversity of Canadian music as well as the
universality of her vocal stylings.  Culled from folk-pop
legends Joni Mitchell, Gordon Lightfoot and Bruce Cockburn,
as well as compositions from rockers Jann Arden and Randy
Bachman, and from
jazz icons Bill Evans and Oscar
Peterson, this records highlights Lee's interpretative
versatility and taste. Opening track Gordon Lightfoot's classic
'If You Could Read My Mind' is taken at an up-tempo groove
with a heralding horn flourish and Lee's vocals filling it with a
joyous tenderness.
 Sheds A Brilliant New
Light on the Music of Visionary
Guitarist and Composer Jimi Hendrix
Jimi Hendrix'  tragic death in 1970 at the
age of 27 has forever connected the
question "What If?" to his mystique. A
profound clue to that elusive answer is
put forward by the dazzling new Justin
Time release, "Experience", from the
World Saxophone Quartet. Taking on
eight of the peerless
guitarist/composer's compositions, the
dynamic ensemble adds another
chapter to both Hendrix' and their own
growing legends.

For this their eighth recording for the
label, founding members oliver Lake,
Hamiet Bluiett, David Murray,and
newcomer to the group Bruce Williams,
are joined by trombonist Craig Harris;
violinist Billy Bang; drummer Gene Lake
and Matthew Garrison on electric bass.
Gospel Songbird TWINKIE CLARK Set to Release
Fierce New CD On Verity Recordings Recorded LIVE
In Detroit With Street Date August 24
By: Gatsby Meldoi'
Fighting It's Way Onto DVD and VHS August 10
"KILL BILL Vol2"  Written & Directed By  QUENTIN
From Miramax Home Entertainment
TWINKIE CLARK has recorded a "live"
album in Detroit on April 24th which is
slated for release  August 24th, on the
Verity label, my sources revealed.  Her
current CD recorded "live" in Charlotte
"Twinkie Clark & Friends" released in
"Kill Bill Volume 2", the action-packed conclusion
to writer/director Quentin Tarantino's
"Kill Bill"
saga, arrives on DVD and VHS on August 10
from Miramax Home Entertainment.   After
dispensing with former colleagues O-Ren Ishii
and Vernita Green in "Kill Bill Vol 1", the Bride
(Uma Thurman-'
Pulp Fiction' & 'Paycheck') goes
2002 remains to be hailed as one of the most reverend
Gospel albums of all time.  As of yet, the forthcoming CD is
untitled.Twinkie is often credited, along with her mother, the
late Dr. Mattie Moss Clark, with shaping the sound of
Gospel music's most emulated female groups
The Clark
Sisters, with Twinkie and sisters Jacky, Dorinda and Karen.  

She has written and produced most of the recordings and
helped to shape the vibrant sound that has become the
Clark Sisters hallmark. She provided lead vocals on such
songs as You Brought The Sunshine,The Darkest Hour,
and Pray for the USA. In the history of gospel music, she
has become a legend in her own right. With the reverence of
audiences, critics and peers, she is considered by many to
be gospel musics greatest organist. She received her
formal musical training at the prestigious Howard University
in Washington DC. Keep an eye and ear open for this one.
out west to resume her quest for justice. She has two
remaining foes on her 'death list' to pursue Budd (Michael
Madsen "Die Another Day") and Elle Driver (Daryl Hannah
"Splash" "A Walk to Remember").  If she can survive these two
assassins, she still has her ultimate goal to achieve - to kill
Bill (David Carradine TV's 'King Fu").  This adrenaline-fueled,
wildly entertaining film brings together all the plot elements
"Kill Bill Vol 1"  in a stunning finale.

DVD includes a behind the scene program featuring Quentin
Tarantino, the filmmakers and cast interviews, comments and
on-set visits; the premiere party for the film; deleted scenes;
original theatrical aspect ratio 2:35:1; Dolby Digital 5.1
Surround Sound and DTS 5.1 Digital Sound; French language
track; French, Spanish, Chinese, Korean and Japanese
subtitles.  Miramax Home Entertainment is distributed by
Buena Vista Home Entertainment.
On  Record  With  
"Hope For Love"
Soulmates Steve and Iqua Colson's first
release together in nearly twenty-five
years is a fabulous family affair that
rekindles the spirit of unity and
empowerment the two began exploring
many years ago on their prior releases
"Triumph" and "No Reservation".  
Assisted by saxophonist T.K. Blue
(Randy Weston, Jimmy Scott); bassist
Andy McCloud (Hinton Ruiz, Savion
Glover); and Reggie Nicholson (Muhal
Richard Abrams, Claudine Amina
Myers), pianist-composer Steve Colson
and vocalist Iqua join forces in
presenting a program of mostly original
music that is a joyous reflection of their
uniquely personal musical vision.

'Regina's Lament' (cut #6) is a powerful
piece of music with lyrics written by
Ntozake Shange and Emily Mann from
their play 'Betsey Brown", that tells the
sad story of a fallen woman. Iqua's
singing (accompanied by just piano and
"Oh Betsey. I didn't want you to
see me like this. Thought I had a sure
thing, but it was just another miss. Now
I'm pregnant, all alone Roscoe's gone".
Street Date for "Hope For Love" is May
18, 2004, from STEVE & IQUA COLSON
on Silver Sphinx Recordings.
AL GREEN Is Back With A Cute CD "I Can't Stop"
On his 2003 album, "I Can't Stop", Al
Green attempts to go back home. The
album was recorded at the Hi studios
with old cohort Willie Mitchell behind
the boards and helping write the
songs, with members of the Hi
VAN MORRISON Is Positively Brilliant With "What's Wrong
With This Picture?" For Blue Note Records
His Blue Note Records debut, " What's
Wrong With This Picture?" the album is
hardly a straight jazz record, but another
step further into the classic pop music of
the 20th century filtered through his own
Celtic swing, R&B, vocal jazz, and
blue-eyed soul.
session crew providing the music (right down to the same
female backup singers). He whoops and hollers his way
through "I Can't Stop" like a man committed, fully alive, and
excited by the chance to get old-school funky. When Green lets
loose with his trademark falsetto burst, it's like the last 30
years never happened. The drums are far too loud and
processed, with the cymbals too high in the mix. Still, the
combination of Green's voice and the replica Hi sound will
raise goose bumps, but not throughout the whole record as
some of the songs are kind of weak.  Standout tracks are  the
almost perfect 'Million to One',  the thrilling album opener 'I
Can't Stop', and 'Play to Win' a standard modern blues
shuffle.  This is his debut cd for legendary Blue Note label.
The title track that opens the album is as close to an anthem
as Morrison's ever written; he states with an easy, swinging,
jazzy soul groove that he is not the same person he once was
and wonders why that was so difficult for others to accept.

There is no bitterness or bite in his assertions. If anything, the
question is asked with warm humor and amusement as if it is
indeed the listener's hangup if he/she can't accept Morrison
"living in the present time."

He asks, "Why don't we take it down and forget about it/'Cause
that ain't me at all," as the song whispers to a close.

Morrison's employment of a large horn section -- actually a pair
of them as the disc was recorded in different sessions -- is full
of teeth and big, bad soul. "Whinin Boy Moan" is a direct cue
from Mose Allison as read by Big Joe Turner. Hard-swinging
R&B horn lines (including his own alto saxophone) combine
with killer solos by tenorman Martin Winning and trumpet boss
Matt Holland as Morrison does his most inspired blues
shouting since Wavelengthstellar covers of "St James
Infirmary" and Lightnin' Hopkins' "Stop Drinking" --

This is the sound of an artist who is comfortable making a
break with his past because it is not a break; he understands it
as the next part of a continuum that goes deeper and wider
than anyone else ever expected. This is the sound of
self-assurance as it articulates itself with grace and aplomb.
Celebrated By Some As Most Brilliant
Politician And Condemned By Others For
His Personal Excesses
Bill Clinton's "My Life"
Street Date June 22, 2004
"Coffee And Cigarettes" Opens In Theaters May 14th    
A  Comic  Series  of  Short  Vignettes For  Cumulative  Effect
From United Artists
Bill Clinton's eagerly
awaited memoir,
My Life,
will be in stores June 20,
2004, and is sure to ignite a
firestorm of interest in an
already politically charged
election year.
"Coffee and Cigarettes" is a
comic series of short vignettes
that build on one another to
create a cumulative effect as the
characters discuss things as
diverse as caffeine popsicles,
Paris in the twenties, and the
An account of Clinton's life through the
White House years,
My Life finds the former
president taking a candid look at his
successes and setbacks.

Hillary Clinton's bestselling Living
, the book is expected to rocket to the
top of bestseller lists, as the intense
fascination with this charismatic and
controversial figure —celebrated by some
as his generation’s most brilliant politician
and condemned by others for his personal
excesses— endures.

President Bill Clinton's
My Life is the
strikingly candid portrait of a global leader
who decided early in life to devote his
intellectual and political gifts, and his
extraordinary capacity for hard work, to
serving the public. It is the fullest, most
concretely detailed, most nuanced account
of a presidency ever written, and a
testament to the positive impact on America
and on the world of his work and his ideals.
twenties, and the use of nicotine as an insecticide, all the
while sitting around sipping coffee and smoking cigarettes.  
As Jarmusch delves into the normal pace of our world from
an extraordinary angle, he shows just how absorbing the
obsessions, joys and addictions of life can be.

Filmed in black and white
, "Coffee and Cigarettes" made its
world premiere at the Venice International Film Festival then
screened to a sold-out crowd at the Toronto International film
Festival. The comedy cast includes Roberto Benigni, Cinque
Lee, Tom Waits, Bill Rice, Jack White, Hoie Lee, Iggy Pop,
Vinny Vella, Written and Directed by Jim Jermusch, Producers
Joana Vicente and Jason Kliot.
The first two titles, "G.I. JOE: VALOR VS. VENOM" and
BIGGEST SHOW ON WHEELS," are scheduled to hit
retail this September, with the release of
HEARD?" SECRET CENTRAL to follow in October.  
Titles based on the remaining properties are expected
to be released in the spring of 2005.  

"This new relationship with
Paramount Home
Entertainment is an exciting way for us to continue the
legendary sagas of properties such as
TRANSFORMERS and G.I. JOE and to develop rich
fantasies for new and classic brands," said Jane
Ritson-Parsons, President of the Hasbro Properties
Group, the intellectual property development and
licensing arm of Hasbro.  "Paramount are worldwide
leaders in this category, and together, we will broaden
consumers' experience with our properties and
provide new opportunities for retailers."

"We are very excited to work with Hasbro in bringing
their exciting properties to the DVD world," said
Thomas Lesinski, President, Paramount Pictures,
Worldwide Home Entertainment.  "Hasbro has long
been a market leader with its toy and game brands,
and this new product line will add significantly to our
children's programming, appealing to boys and girls
from their preschool to preteen years."
Hasbro (NYSE:HAS) is a worldwide leader in children's
and family leisure time entertainment products and
services, including the design, manufacture, and
marketing of games and toys ranging from traditional to
high-tech.  Both internationally and in the U.S., its
brands and products provide the highest quality and most
recognizable play experiences in the world.

The Hasbro Properties Group develops and expands
Hasbro's core brands, such as G.I. JOE,
CANDYLAND, into a wide variety of entertainment and
consumer categories.

Paramount Worldwide Home Entertainment is a division
of Paramount Pictures, which is part of the entertainment
operations of Viacom Inc., one of the world's largest
entertainment and media companies, and a leader in the
production, promotion, and distribution of entertainment,
news, sports, and music.
Paramount Worldwide Home
Entertainment distributes DVD and VHS in North America
and internationally through 13 subsidiaries, one joint
venture and 32 licensees covering 60 countries.
(NYSE:HAS) and Paramount Home
Entertainment announced today an
agreement in principle in which
Paramount will gain worldwide
distribution rights to Hasbro's wide
range of direct-to-video titles based on
the Company's unmatched portfolio of
entertainment brands.  The
announcement was made in
conjunction with today's start of
Licensing 2004 International at the
Jacob Javits Convention Center here in
New York.

Hasbro will develop and produce the
content, and
Paramount Home
Entertainment plans to market and
distribute the titles through their regular
children's entertainment channels.  The
initial slate of brands on which Hasbro
and Paramount will work together
Jamie Foxx