Colin Kaepernick became the instant viral moment of the Sports Illustrated Sportsperson Of The Year Awards with a little help from Beyonce. Kaepernick, who is currently not playing in the NFL and thought to have been blackballed, was given the Muhammad Ali Legacy Award. Queen Bey was the surprise presenter to the former 49ers Quarterback. Beside all the compliments on Beyonce’s post baby body, she was applauded for her standing up for Kaepernick. He also gave a heartfelt speech saying he was accepting his award on behalf of the people. Kaepernick, who’s also on the cover of G.Q. as Citizen Of The Year because of his protest of police brutality, wants to take back the message. He insisted on a G.Q. photo shoot in Harlem with its residents’ children and at the same location the Nation Of Islam led a march against the war in Vietnam with Muhammad Ali. He also insisted G.Q. use black designers for the extensive wardrobe changes. Kaepernick says his kneeling at the flag during the national anthem was not about anything other than protesting police brutality and racism.
2017 may only have a couple of weeks left, but it is the year of Tiffany Haddish. The comedienne helped turn this summer’s Girls Trip into a $100 million plus box office blockbuster. Now, she’s been nominated for Supporting Actress for The Critics Choice Awards, which take place Thursday, January 11th and will air on the CW. Meanwhile, Haddish, who became the first African American female comedienne to host Saturday Night Live this year, has a new book called The Last Black Unicorn. She details her abusive childhood because of her schizophrenic mom who had more problems after a car accident. Haddish talks about her abusive ex-husband who even attacked her at a comedy festival. Haddish is divorced now, and even thanks her bullies because she says they made her rich. The Last Black Unicorn is available now online and in bookstores.
Speaking of The Critics Choice Awards, Mary J. Blige is nominated as well. Blige stars in the film Mudbone, which is stirring up huge buzz and was released on Netflix last month. It’s the post World War II story of two men, their families and life working on a farm dealing with racism and life after war. Blige is winning raves for her role as Florence Jackson.
Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson is getting a star on The Hollywood Walk Of Fame in 2018. Johnson is on a roll. This month alone he’s on the cover of Ebony magazine. It’s the power issue for December/January, and Johnson talks fame, fortune and fatherhood. He’s also on the cover of InStyle magazine. Finally, the former pro wrestler and “my nephew” Kevin Hart reunited for the sequel to the Robin Williams’ box office hit now known as Jumanji: Welcome To The Jungle. The 3-D action adventure follows four high schoolers who become trapped in a video game, and as their mature selves (Hart, Johnson, Jack Black and Karen Gillan) must find their way through the jungle and back to the real world. Jumanji: Welcome To The Jungle opens Wednesday, December 20th.
Time magazine has made the hash tag #metoo and the whistleblowers of sexual assault and harassment The Person Of The Year. The #metoo handle was originally created a decade ago by Tarana Burke, a social activist and three time sexual assault survivor. Actress Alyssa Milano (Who’s The Boss; Charmed) brought it to the mainstream when she used it to support the many women who were coming forward about sexual assault and harassment. Although neither lady made the cover of Time, they are featured inside the article along with Actor Terry Crews, who is currently suing the William Morris agent he alleges assaulted him at an industry party.
Meanwhile, the latest to be accused include Congressman John Conyers. He’s currently the longest serving U.S. Congressman and he announced his retirement after multiple allegations of assault and workplace harassment, which he denies. Minnesota Senator Al Franken, the former Saturday Night Live writer and performer, has announced he will resign from the U.S. Senate after more women came forward with stories of sexual harassment against Franken, who disputes the accounting of the specifics in all the accusations. Finally, That 70’s Show Star Danny Masterson was fired from the Netflix show The Ranch. Masterson was a producer and co-star with his former That 70’s Show Co-star Ashton Kutcher. Netflix was called out for keeping Masterson on The Ranch and then word got out that a Netflix executive accidentally told an alleged victim we don’t believe the accusations. Netflix had previously cancelled Bill Cosby’s standup special and removed Kevin Spacey from House Of Cards after their accusers went public. Masterson issued a statement and denies all wrongdoing, and said the police investigated these accusations in the past and found they had no merit. The actor also says he was disappointed in Netflix’s decision, but wished the show and its crew well and looks forward to clearing his name.
R Kelly has been robbed. The controversial singer’s Atlanta homes were cleaned out. Police say an associate of Kelly’s stole everything inside and sold it off while the singer was on tour. TV’s, couches and a bedroom set all went to the highest bidder. Alfonso Walker is the man police have identified as the suspect and Walker is reportedly still on the run. Most of Kelly’s property has been recovered by police, but they are still soliciting the public for the rest and for information on suspect Walker.
Mrs. Russell Wilson will co-host the 46th Annual Dick Clark New Year’s Rockin’ Eve. Singer Ciara will take the Los Angeles portion of the show while Ryan Seacrest and Jenny McCarthy will be live from Times Square in New York City. As of press time, Ciara will also be performing, but her fellow performers haven’t been announced yet.
WDAS Morning Man Steve Harvey will ring in 2018 on TV. Harvey will host FOX’s New Year’s Eve broadcast. Harvey will be in Times Square, but FOX hasn’t announced his lineup of guest and performers yet.
Actress Aja Naomi King is the new face of L’Oreal. The How To Get Away With Murder star is introducing the legendary cosmetic company’s new line, L’Oreal Paris. King will represent a line of products that bring out the radiance in skin even in the winter.
Patti LaBelle has food, new music and acting all for you. The Philly Music legend has her banana pudding, cakes, pies and cobbler at Wal-Mart and everybody’s raving …and buying them up. Then she’s back on the Cooking Channel with Patti LaBelle’s Place. She’ll be welcoming former Today Show Anchor, and WDAS alum, Tamron Hall and Good Morning America’s Robin Roberts. David and Tamela Mann will kick off Patti LaBelle’s Place this Sunday, December 10th at 11am. Miss Patti also has a new album Christmas with Patti & Friends. The album will feature appearances from Vivian Green and Rueben Studdard. Finally, LaBelle is joining the cast of Star. She’ll play the mother of Queen Latifah and Brandy in the show. Star airs Wednesdays at 9pm on FOX.
Smokey Robinson has a new holiday album out. While he did a few holiday albums on Motown with The Miracles, Christmas Everyday is Robinson's first solo effort. There's a mix of originals like The Night The Baby Was Born and classic songs such as Donny Hathaway's This Christmas. Christmas Everyday is available in stores and online now.
Oscar winner Angela Bassett, Peter Krause (Sports Night; Parenthood) and Connie Britton (Spin City; Friday Night Lights) will head up the show 911. The new medical drama will revolve around ambulance driving rescue workers. 911 is scheduled for Wednesday, January 3rd premiere on FOX. Meanwhile, look for Bassett in Marvel Comics big screen adaption of Black Panther, with Chadwick Boseman, to be released February 16th.
Although Tyler Perry has signed a new deal with Viacom, he still has programming for Oprah’s OWN coming in 2018. Perry is rebooting The House Of Payne into The Paynes. This new reboot won’t have Allen Payne, Demetria McKinney, Lance Gross or Keshia Knight Pulliam as regulars. No word yet on whether they’ll be guest stars. Emmy Winner Jackee Harry will join original castmembers LaVan Davis and Cassie Davis. The Paynes premieres Tuesday, January 16th with back to back episodes at 10pm. Perry’s nighttime dramas The Haves & The Have Nots, premiering Tuesday, January 9th at 9pm, and If Loving You Is Wrong, premiering Wednesday, January 10th at 10pm, will also be back on the OWN schedule for 2018.
We remember a Philadelphia legend, Mr. Bruce Webb. Webb’s Department Store on Ridge Avenue became an institution. Rivaled only by the famous King James Records, Webb’s was a first stop for the latest music before the online stores and downloading. It also became a key stop in Philadelphia for entertainment legends Grover Washington, Jr., Richard Pryor, Dianne Reeves, The Temptations and Smokey Robinson, just to name a few. Mr. Webb was also an acclaimed photographer, and was most often featured in the community newspaper Scoop USA. Mr. Webb stayed active in the music industry as a consultant, promoter and distributor. He even was a boxing coach to Jimmy Young for his 1976 fight with Muhammad Ali. Leaving behind a career in entertainment as varied as the products in his store, Bruce Webb died Thanksgiving Day after a battle with cancer at the age of 83. His homegoing services will be held this Saturday, December 9th at the Germantown Church Of The Brethren, 611 Germantown Avenue, Philadelphia, Pa 19119 with the viewing from 9am to 11am and services beginning at 11a.
One of the legendary soldiers of Jazz music has passed. Jon Hendricks was a singer and lyricist. He was part of the legendary trio Lambert, Hendricks & Ross. Hendricks became a legend for adding lyrics to Jazz instrumentals. Over the years the three time Grammy winner worked with everyone from Charlie “Bird” Parker to Bobby McFerrin and Wynton Marsalis. Hendricks was 96-years old.
We remember Jim Nabors. The television icon has made many TV memories: always Carol Burnett’s season premiere guest on her variety show, 1967-1978, as her good luck charm; his own CBS variety show 1969-1971; and, the Saturday morning children’s show The Lost Saucer. Despite the country-hillbilly speaking accent he used for characters, Nabors was also a gold selling recording artist whose singing repertoire ranged from gospel to opera. Most importantly, Nabors will be remembered for the immensely popular spinoff from The Andy Griffith Show, Gomer Pyle USMC, 1964-1969. It was Griffith, who also produced Gomer Pyle, who brought Nabors first to his show and then championed the successful spinoff. Nabors enjoyed a five season run when he called the show off himself to pursue other interest. Nabors kept his personal life out of the spotlight, but did marry Stan Cadwallader once same sex marriage became legal. Jim Nabors was 87 years old.
Idris Elba returns to the big screen! He co-stars with Jessica Chastain and Kevin Costner in Molly’s Game. It’s the true story of the Olympic class skier who ran one of the most notorious high stakes poker games for nearly a decade. The games included top sports stars, business leaders and entertainment’s top elite performers and executives before it was taken down by the F.B.I. Molly’s Game opens on Christmas Day.
Zendaya hits the circus by way of the big screen. The actress/social activist goes on the adventure side with her new movie The Greatest Showman. Co-starring Hugh Jackman, Zach Efron, Michelle Williams and Rebecca Ferguson, the bio pic is the story of how Barnum & Bailey Circus was begun by P.T. Barnum. The Greatest Showman opens Wednesday, December 20th.
The 49th Annual NAACP Image Awards will air on The Martin Luther King Day holiday. The two-hour show will air live and be a commemoration of the 50th anniversary of Dr. King’s assassination. Among the leading nominees are Mary J. Blige and Jay-Z with five nominations. Issa Rae (Insecure), Bruno Mars and Sza have four. Charlie Wilson, Ledisi and Idris Elba have three nominations. Netflix and OWN lead in the TV categories. The NAACP Image Awards with Host and Nominee Anthony Anderson air 9pm, Monday, January 15th on TV One.
The 2018 Grammy nominations have been announced. Sza is among the standouts with nominations for her songs The Weekend and Love Galore and for herself as Best New Artist. Other nominees include Jay-Z with eight, Kendrick Lamar with seven nominations, Bruno Mars with six and Khalid (Location) with five nominations. The Grammys air Sunday, January 28th on CBS.
ABC’s reboot of American Idol with judges Katy Perry, Lionel Richie Luke Bryan and Host Ryan Seacrest airs Sunday, March 11th on ABC.
FOX’s self-proclaimed successor to American Idol, The Four: Battle For Stardom premieres in January. What’s the difference between this and the other singing reality shows? The Four won’t just be making competition winners, but making stars. The judges are Fergie, DJ Khaled, Meghan Trainor, Record Executive Charlie Walk and P Diddy. The Four: Battle For Stardom premieres 8pm, Thursday, January 4th on FOX.
Sheryl Lee Ralph is returning to the TV and silver screens. First up, Ralph teams up with Oscar winners Morgan Freeman and Tommy Lee Jones in the big screen comedy Just Getting Started. A retired lawyer and retired F.B.I. agent team up to take down the mafia from their quiet retirement village. Just Getting Started opens this Friday, December 8th.
Then Ralph, a.k.a. Mrs. State Senator Vincent Hughes, joins the cast of BET’s The Quad. Returning for its second season, BET’s scripted drama is set on the campus of a Historically Black College/University (HBCU). Anika Noni Rose (Dreamgirls; Power; For Colored Girls) heads up the cast as the no nonsense college president. The Quad will return to BET early in 2018.
Taraji P. Henson will star in the action-thriller Proud Mary, which will reunite Color Purple Co-stars Danny Glover and Margaret Avery, and opens January 12th. Then there's the Tyler Perry psychological thriller Acrimony, co-starring Tika Sumpter (The Haves & Have Nots; Ride Along), opening March 30th.
Congresswoman Maxine Waters and Actor Kofi Siriboe (Girls Trip; Queen Sugar) are sharing the December/January cover of Essence magazine’s Year in Review: Everyone Who Gave Us Life.
Tracee Ellis Ross has her own line clothing line. She's collaborated with JC Penny and launched Tracee Ellis Ross For JC Penny #TER4JCP. Ross says her launching this line is based on her mom's influence on her fashion sense, and that it's in the genes. The collection is available now online and at JC Penny Stores.
Larenz Tate (Love Jones; Dead Presidents) and Erica Ash (The Real Husbands Of Hollywood) will host The 2018 Trumpet Awards, the celebration of African American achievement and history in society, airing Sunday, February 11th at 9pm on Bounce TV.
Check out who’s coming to town:
This Saturday, December 9th – Fantasia Christmas Holiday concert at the Fillmore Philly, 29 East Allen Street and for more information log onto thefillmorephilly.com/venue
Tuesday, December 12th – A Soulful Christmas featuring local Philadelphia praise dancers and youth, combined and mass choirs and honoree Gospel Legend Lady Tramaine Hawkins at Verizon Hall in the Kimmel Center, Broad & Spruce Streets. For tickets and information log onto kimmelcenter.org
Sunday, December 17th – Damien Escobar in concert at The Keswick Theater in Glenside, Pa. and for more information log onto keswicktheatre.com
Tuesday, December 19th – The Great Xscape Tour starring Xscape, Monica and Tamar Braxton at The Liacouras Center, Broad & Montgomery. Tix are on sale Friday, October 13th 2017 and for more information log onto Liacourascenter.com/events.
Thursday, December 30th – Maze Featuring Frankie Beverly in concert at The Tower Theater, Upper Darby, Pa. For tickets and information venue.thetowerphilly.com.
Saturday, January 13th – Babyface at The Tropicana in Atlantic City. For tickets or for more information log onto Tropicana.net
Sunday, January 14th – The All-Stars Of Hip Hop starring Nelly, Ja Rule, KRS1, Redman & Method Man, Fatman Scoop and Three Times Dope at The Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City. For tickets and information log onto ppshows.com.
Saturday, January 27th – The O’Jays at The Sugar House Casino, 1001 Delaware Avenue. For tickets or for more information log onto sugarhousecasino.com
Friday, February 2nd – Tavis Smiley Presents Death Of A King: A Theatrical Experience. A live multi-media presentation based on Smiley’s best seller Death of A King: The Real Story of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s Final Year at the Merriam Theater, 250 South Broad Street, between Locust and Manning Streets. For tickets and information log onto kimmelcenter.org
February, Friday, the 16th and Saturday, 17th – Mary J. Blige in concert at the Borgata in Atlantic City. Tickets and more information at WWW.THEBORGATA.COM!
Saturday, February 10th – Chris Tucker comedy show at The Sugar House Casino, 1001 Delaware Avenue. For tickets or for more information log onto sugarhousecasino.com
Saturday, February 17th – Kem and Avant in concert at The Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City. For tickets and information log onto ticketmaster.com.
Sunday, February 18th – The Soul Jam The Stylistics, The Delfonics, Blue Magic and Bloodstone At The Tropicana in Atlantic City. Tickets and more information log onto Tropicana.net
Saturday, February 24th – Katt Williams in concert at The Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City. For tickets and information log onto boardwalkhall.com/events.
Friday, March 9th – Keith Sweat in concert at The Liacouras Center, Broad & Montgomery. Tix are on sale Friday, October 13th 2017 and for more information log onto Liacourascenter.com/events.
Thursday, April 5th – Patti LaBelle in concert at The Academy Of Music, 240 South Broad Street, between Locust and Manning Streets. For tickets and information log onto kimmelcenter.org
If you would like more info please email me at PattyJackson@iHeartMedia.com or check me out with my midday reports at 10:30am, 12:30pm and 2:30pm during the day.