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The First Annual Sista Strut Breast Cancer Walk will take place Saturday, June 17th at XFINITY Live! Philadelphia, 201 North 17th Street. All the registration info and details are on the wdasfm.com page.
Chart topping singer and Destiny’s Child Alum Kelly Rowland has a new book. The first time mom decided to create what she didn’t have, and that’s a first timer’s guide for new moms. Rowland takes the rose colored glasses off the situation so moms can be better prepared for what will still be the greatest experience of their lives. Rowland’s book, titled Whoa, Baby!, is available in bookstores and online now.
Jamie Foxx is finally going to go public with Actress Katie Holmes. Foxx and Holmes have been reportedly dating for years. The two have been bending over backwards to avoid questions or confirming any personal dating info for the public. Complicating things is the fact that Holmes was married to Foxx was a onetime Co-star Tom Cruise. Cruise and Foxx became friends on the set of their 2004 movie Collateral. But, turns out the secrecy was all to protect Cruise and Holmes’ 10-year old daughter Suri from the extra media attention. Sources say Holmes grew tired of the elaborate hiding games, and Foxx and Holmes were finally spotted out to dinner by paparazzi. Get ready for less hiding this summer as the two go public full force. Meanwhile, Foxx is hosting a musical game called Beat Shazam, based on the popular song identifying app. Contestants take on the app after they advance from a few rounds of naming songs against each other. Foxx's show, Beat Shazam will debut on Thursday, May 25th at 9pm on FOX.
Shemar Moore, who left the hit series Criminal Minds, will return to his old stomping grounds this season and then gear up for his own show this fall. Moore will reprise his role as Derek Morgan for the season finale of Criminal Minds. Then, Moore is doing the third reboot of the S.W.A.T. franchise. The 1975 ABC series starred Robert Urich. Then the 2003 film version starred Samuel L. Jackson. Now, it’s Moore turn as he plays S.W.A.T.’s unorthodox leader, Lt. Daniel “Hondo” Harrelson, who balances his loyalty to both the law and the streets. S.W.A.T. is slated for CBS this fall.
Two time-Emmy Winner Regina King will star in a series about the Atlanta Child Murders. The case, which stretched from 1979 to May of 1980, terrorized the south and saw the murders of 28 African American young adults, teens and children. Wayne Williams was convicted for two of the murders, and authorities had later contributed many of the other 28 cases to Williams and closed those cases. Author Kim Reid, whose mother was an investigator on the Atlanta Child Murder cases, wrote the memoir on which the series is based. No air date has been announced yet, but King will star and co-produce with her American Crime producer, Oscar winning Writer John Ridley.
The third time was not the charm for Janet Jackson, Miss Jackson if you’re nasty! She and her husband of three years, Wissam Al Mana, have separated despite welcoming their first child, son Eissa. So what went wrong? Close friends say Jackson wanted more freedom in the relationship. Could it have been cultural differences playing a factor? Others point to Wissam's disrespect of Janet's mom Katherine. Mom Katherine, 87, came to live with Wissam and Janet for a couple of months to help them with baby Eissa. Wissam was not only unhappy with that arrangement but disrespectful toward Katherine. Now that Janet’s getting her freedom again, could she be resuming her music career? How about the tour she interrupted to begin her family? Meantime, Wissam Al Mana has reportedly moved on with The Weeknd’s ex, Supermodel Bella Hadid. “Miss Jackson” and Wissam have some things to work out before they move on too quickly with their separate lives. Wissam’s net worth is a billion dollars. There’s obviously support for the child, but what will Janet’s three years of marriage award her?
The third time just might be the charm for Stevie Wonder. The 66-year old Motown Genius is going to jump the broom with girlfriend of five years and the mother of his two of his youngest children, 42-year old Tomeeka Robyn Bracy. Wonder called it quits with his marriage to Fashion Designer Kai Miller Morris, the mother of two Stevie’s teenagers. Meanwhile, Tomeeka is the same age as Aisha, as in Stevie’s Isn’t She Lovely daughter Aisha Morris. Reportedly, Wonder is headed to the islands this time to tie the knot before the summer is out.
After five months of dating, Mariah Carey has split with her boyfriend Bryan Tanaka. Tanaka is a dancer in Carey stage show. The two began dating after Carey split from her billionaire boyfriend James Packer. Carey and Packer started up fresh from Carey’s split with now ex-hubby Nick Cannon. So what sunk Tanaka and Carey? There are three schools of thought. One, when Carey, Nick Cannon and their kids went to The Kids Choice Awards as one big happy family, Tanaka couldn’t handle it and saw the writing on the wall. Two, Tanaka forgot to buy Carey a present for her birthday and a super blowout fight grew from that. Three, the reality show, which wound up featuring more about the Carey-Tanaka relationship than either of them would have preferred, was the final nail in the coffin. Friends say the two still communicate and reconciliation isn’t out of the question, but don’t hold your breath.
Oscar nominee Don Cheadle is ready to play the man who died reputably as America’s richest black man. Fresh off critical acclaim for playing Miles Davis, Cheadle will now take on the role of Wall Street’s first black millionaire, Jeremiah G. Hamilton. Hamilton was exiled from Haiti to become a successful broker and land agent in America. Before his death in 1875, Hamilton was in an interracial marriage and even owned stock in rail companies that U.S. segregation laws forbid him to ride. Cheadle acquired the film rights himself to Hamilton’s biography, Prince Of Darkness, and is currently working on its adaption.
Hoda is back! Brand new mom and Today Show 10am Anchor Hoda Kotb will return from maternity leave this Monday, April 17th to rejoin Co-anchor Kathie Lee Gifford. Kotb took everyone by surprise when at age 52 she announced she just adopted a daughter, Haley Joy, earlier this year. Mother and daughter have been together two months and both are doing just fine. Kotb will return to Today this Monday at 10am.
We remember Comedian/Actor Charlie Murphy, who died of leukemia this week. Murphy is best remembered for his stint as a performer and writer for Comedy Central’s Chappelle Show. Murphy, who was two year older than his brother Eddie, began his career as a standup comedian. He gained quite a reputation on his own. That led to movie roles (The Player’s Club; Roll Bounce; Night At The Museum; Jungle Fever) and TV appearances (Martin; One On One; Are We There Yet?; Hawaii Five-O). Murphy also worked on his little brother Eddie’s projects like Harlem Nights, Norbit and Vampire In Brooklyn. At the height of Charlie Murphy’s success he lost his wife, Tisha Taylor Murphy, to cervical cancer in 2009. The couple had two children. Eddie Murphy released a joint statement with his family complimenting Charlie’s many talents, how much he’ll be missed and a request for privacy. At press time, funeral arrangements have not been announced. Charlie Murphy was 57-years old.
We also remember the legendary Don Rickles, who passed from complications of kidney failure. The Emmy winning actor and comedian was sarcastically nicknamed “Mr. Warmth” because he was one of the most famous insult comics in history. He began his career as an actor, but saw the business didn’t embrace him in that form. He turned to stand up comedy and his career was made. He was a regular on Johnny Carson’s 30-year run on The Tonight Show, the Dean Martin variety show and celebrity roasts, David Letterman’s two late night shows and would guest star on the shows of fellow comedians and best friends Don Adams (Get Smart) and Bob Newhart (Newhart). Rickles also earned the nickname Mr. 13 Weeks because of how quickly all his solo efforts at sitcoms got cancelled. Rickles also enjoyed a long friendship and working relationship with The Chairmen Of The Board, Frank Sinatra. They both toured together extensively. Don Rickles, known to be as kind off stage as he was tough on stage, was still on the road as recently as last winter. He was 90-years old.
Bill O'Reilly, the saga continues. O’Reilly announced he’s on vacation, but is this a way for FOX News to exit him from the network? Sponsors continue to pull out of his FOX News show, The O'Reilly Factor, even though the negative publicity has caused the show’s ratings to increase. The media has seized on the revelation that O'Reilly and FOX News settled with several women for $13 million over sexual harassment allegations. That was followed by new accusers like one time O'Reilly Factor regular Dr. Wendy Walsh, who claims O'Reilly stopped helping her professionally and tried removing her from the show after she refused to go to his hotel suite after dinner. O'Reilly, despite the settlements, denies the merits of the accusations. Unlike Roger Ailes, who was removed from the network, O’Reilly is a star and has FOX News’ highest ratings. Will he stay or will he go?
John Oates of Hall & Oates has a new book. The mustached half of The Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame inducted singing/songwriting team, which launched here in Philadelphia, has written the memoir Change Of Seasons. Oates details the ups and downs of fame, the process of trying to live a normal life before, during and after becoming a hugely successful Pop/Rock/R&B act. The book also covers Oates meeting Darryl Hall at a Philly ballroom 50 years ago and playing together since their Temple University days. Oates has been keeping a journal since 1970, and used it for the book. Here at WDAS, Hall & Oates found a big fan in our late Program Director Butterball. Their music has been found on the WDAS playlist in some form or fashion for decades, and some of the hits were even launched at ‘DAS first. Hall & Oates sold over 60 million albums and became the most successful duo in music history. Their songs include Sara Smile, Rich Girl, Private Eyes, Maneater, Out Of Touch, I Can’t Go For That (No Can Do) and One On One, just to name a few. Among the revelations Oates makes: even being married to a supermodel didn’t work because Hall & Oates were the hottest guys on the charts at the time. Shaving off that trademark mustache wasn’t just for style but a rebirth of sorts for his lifestyle. Being told he was broke after selling millions of albums. Oates say he blames ex-Lawyer Allen Grubman and ex-Manager (and Mariah Carey’s ex-husband) Tommy Mottola, now a high-powered music exec. Oates says they didn’t cheat them, but he feels Grubman and Mottola should have warned them the high spending and lavish gifts would come at a price. Hall & Oates have since fought to recover millions in residuals and now have righted their personal finances. Hall & Oates will headline Philly’s First Annual HoagieNation on Memorial Day. Along with 80’s Rock Group Tears For Fears, HoagieNation will also feature Philly’s own Vivian Green, Son Little and G. Love & Special Sauce, to name a few. The First Annual HoagieNation Starring Hall & Oates will take place at Penn Landing’s Festival Pier on Memorial Day, May 27th and for tickets and information log on to HoagieNation.com. The book, Change Of Seasons, is out now, and Oates will also have a new, solo music release of original and traditional songs, like a live version of Maneater, coming soon.
The blockbuster Get Out is still running in the box office top ten, but is still scheduled to make its DVD and Blue Ray debut on May 23rd. The release will include an alternative ending. The horror/thriller written and directed by Comedian and Emmy Winner Jordan Peele and starring Daniel Kaluuya and Allison Williams has taken in over $168 million at the box office so far.
This August is when Marlon Wayans returns to TV with his new show Marlon. The sitcom follows a divorced couple with two children who are trying to successfully co-parent when dad is a big kid himself. Essence Atkins (Half & Half; Smart Guy) co-stars as Wayans ex along with Bresha Webb (Meet The Blacks; People Are Talking), Notim Taylor and Amir O’Neil. Marlon will run for 10 episodes beginning Wednesday, August 16th at 9pm on NBC.
Being Mary Jane returns to BET this summer. Part of what held up the show was the disagreement with Star Gabrielle Union and the network on how many shows to film and when they would air. The two sides settled their differences. Now Union, who is also an executive producer, will see her top-rated Being Mary Jane return to BET on July 18th for the second half of the fourth season.
The 2017 Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame will take place next month. Lenny Kravitz will perform a special tribute to Prince, and Alicia Keys is also set to perform that night as well. Snoop Dogg will do the honors inducting his late friend and former Death Row label mate Tupac Shakur. Shakur would have been 46-years old this year. Meanwhile, Pharrell Williams will present Chic’s Nile Rodgers The Award for Musical Excellence. Rodgers will accept for himself and his musical partner and Chic Co-founder the late Bernard Edwards. Rodgers and Pharrell teamed up with Daft Punk for the Grammy-winning, Chic-styled hit Get Lucky in 2013. The 2017 Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame Induction ceremony will air on HBO Saturday, April 29th at 8pm.
Coming in April, The Grammys will air an all-star tribute to The Bee Gees. Stevie Wonder, Andra Day, Tori Kelly and John Legend will be among the performers. There’ll be an appearance by John Travolta and the last surviving Bee Gee, Barry Gibb will perform hits from the Saturday Night Fever Soundtrack. Stayin’ Alive: A Grammy Salute To The Music Of The Bee Gees airs this Sunday, April 16th on CBS at 8pm.
Get ready for Kevin Hart Day this summer! Philadelphia, the city of brotherly love and sisterly affection, has declared the native home of the actor/comedian will have a day of appreciation. “My nephew” has been in town filming with Emmy Winner Bryan Cranston (Breaking Bad) the upcoming movie Untouchables, which follows the relationship of a paralyzed man and the caregiver he hires to help him adjust to his new reality and disability. Hart’s also hit up local comedy clubs, donated $10,000 to the local Ronald McDonald House charity and has been attending local activities like the Sixers’ games. The man is on a roll. His movie Untouchables is due out in 2018. And, Kevin Hart Day in Philadelphia will happen this summer, Thursday, July 6th.
Oscar nominee and Empire Co-star Gabourey Sidibe is telling all. Sidibe is now adding author to her resume and has written the new book This Is Just My Face: Try Not To Stare. The woman who gave an iconic performance in the Academy Award winning Lee Daniels movie Precious details the struggles she deals with despite being a star. Sidibe talks about her very personal decision to have lap band surgery, her type 2 diabetes diagnosis and her teenage battle with bulimia and self-esteem issues. Despite these challenges, Sidibe is feeling pretty good these days. She reunited with Lee Daniels for the number one drama series Empire. Her weight is coming down quite a bit. The actress says she’s ready to receive her gentleman caller. This Is Just My Face: Try Not To Stare, will be available in May.
Tiger Woods commemorates the 20th anniversary of his Master’s win at Augusta with a new book. The 1997 Masters: My Story chronicles not just the moment he broke golf’s color barrier and changed the face of the game forever, but his journey to and since that trailblazing moment. Woods covers the racial harassment he received as a child being called slurs on the golf course and having lemons, limes and rocks thrown at his family’s house. He writes how his brothers, Kevin and Earl, Jr. kicked down the door of the perpetrators and after a little talk, the fruit and rocks were no longer thrown at the house. While he didn’t confirm the names or number of affairs, Woods did go into his regrets about the cheating scandal that nearly totally derailed his career. He says now he and his ex-wife Elin are in a good place as co-parents. The 1997 Masters: My Story by Tiger Woods is available now.
Unforgettable is a thriller set to hit theaters this spring. Rosario Dawson (Men In Black II; He Got Game; Luke Cage; Daredevil) stars as a woman whose new husband and stepdaughter are perfect for her life. But, Katherine Heigl (Grey’s Anatomy; Knocked Up) is the ex-wife and mom of Dawson’s new family whose jealousy turns into a nightmare for the new wife. Unforgettable, also starring Cheryl Ladd (Charlie’s Angels), hits theaters April 21st.
Tracee Ellis Ross is on the cover of the latest issue of Good Housekeeping. She talks about her Golden Globe winning role of a strong black woman on TV’s Black-ish, and the extraordinary role model and cheerleader she has in her mother, Superstar and fellow Golden Globe Winner Diana Ross.
Check out Supermodels Maria Borges and Jasmine Tookes on the cover of Elle. It’s Elle’s celebration of top models issue.
Paris Jackson is on the cover of the 150th anniversary issue of Harper's Bazaar.
The cast of Underground (Aldis Hodge, Alano Miller, Amirah Vann and Aisha Hinds) cover the latest Upscale magazine. The TV series Underground, co-executive produced by Singer/Songwriter John Legend, is currently in its second season on WGN America and airs Wednesdays at 10pm.
Oprah Winfrey and Tony Award winning Actress Renee’ Elise Goldsberry (Hamilton) are both the cover of Essence magazine’s April issue. The ladies are starring together in The Immortal Life Of Henrietta Lacks, the true story of the contribution made to science by an African American woman who never received credit for it until decades after her death. The Immortal Life Of Henrietta Lacks airs on Saturday, April 22nd on HBO. The April edition of Essence is on hits newsstands now.
Actress Jurnee Smollett (Underground) covers Ebony’s March 2017 issue.
Essence Magazine has released a commemorative collector’s book on the former First Family. The Obamas: The White House Years is available now.
Former First Lady Michelle Obama covers a special Ebony magazine collector’s issue. Ladies First: 100 + Of The Most Powerful Women Of All Time is now available and was designed for Women’s History Month. Meanwhile, Former President Barack and the former FLOTUS have closed their first post White House book deal rumored to have a $65 million price tag. Penguin/Random House won the bidding war, but isn't confirming if the books are memoirs or not. As for the hefty pay, The Obamas are choosing to donate a great deal of that money to charity, including The Obama Foundation. Expect new books from both the former POTUS and FLOTUS in 2018.
Essence Magazine is gearing up for its 23rd Annual Essence Fest and The Hip Hop Queen Of Soul, A Legend and The Boss will be in the house! Yes! Mary J. Blige, John Legend and Motown Legend Miss Diana Ross will headline the now legendary festival. Chaka Khan, Philly’s own Jazmine Sullivan, India.Arie, Solange, Shirley Jones of The Jones Girls, Ro James, Tweet, Shaggy, Michel’le, Yuna and Lalah Hathaway will also be performing with more acts to come. The 2017 Essence Fest will be June 29th through July 2nd in New Orleans.
Check out who’s coming to town:
This Saturday, April 15th – The Philly Spring Jam starring Guy featuring Teddy Riley, Ginuwine, Jagged Edge, Dru Hill and Next at The Liacouras Center, Broad and Montgomery. Tickets go on sale January 17th and for information 1-800-298-4200.
Sunday, April 30th – Tower Of Power at The Keswick Theater in Glenside, Pa. For tickets and information log onto keswicktheatrephilly.ticketoffices.com.
Thursday, May 4th – Marsha Ambrosius and Eric Benet at The Keswick Theater in Glenside, Pa. For tickets and information log onto keswicktheatrephilly.ticketoffices.com.
Saturday, May 13th – Mother’s Day Weekend concert starring Frankie Beverly & Maze, Gladys Knight and Kem at The Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City. Tickets are on sale now and for more information log onto boardwalkhall.com.
Saturday, May 13th –Brian McKnight at The Keswick Theater in Glenside, PA. Tickets are on sale now and for more information log onto keswicktheatre.com.
Sunday, May 14th – Mother’s Day Concert starring Stephanie Mills and Troop at The Tropicana Hotel & Casino in Atlantic City. Tickets are on sale now and for more information log onto ticketmaster.com.
Sunday, May 28th – Maxwell with Leela James and Ledisi in concert at The Borgata Hotel & Casino in Atlantic City and for tickets and information log onto theborgata.com.
Thursday, June 1st – Bell/Biv/DeVoe with special guests SWV and En Vogue at The Mann Center For The Performing Arts, 52nd & Parkside Avenue. Tickets go on sale April 21st and for more information log onto manncenter.org.
Sunday, July 16th – Jill Scott in concert at The Borgata Hotel & Casino in Atlantic City and for tickets and information log onto theborgata.com.
Saturday, July 29th – Diana Ross’ In The Name Of Love Tour at The Mann Center For The Performing Arts, 52nd & Parkside Avenue and for tickets and information log onto manncenter.org.
Sunday, August 13th – Kool & The Gang and The Commodores in concert at The Borgata Hotel & Casino in Atlantic City and for tickets and information log onto theborgata.com.
Friday, September 1st - The I Love The 90’s Tour: The Party Continues starring Blackstreet, TLC, Montell Jordan, Naughty By Nature, Biz Markie, Snap and C&C Music Factory at The BB&T Pavilion in Camden, NJ.