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ESPN President John Skipper Speaks At The Tuskegee University Commencement And…

…it was a CELEBRATION! Strike up the band… the best band in the land, the Tuskegee University Golden Virtuosos!!

Wow. I have a LOT of family and friends who are Tuskegee Institute and Tuskegee University alumni. I may well have attended myself, but The University Of Alabama ended up being the best option (financially, mainly) for continuing my education post-high school. However, anyone who grew up in ‘Skegee can tell you that TU and the town that surrounds it are bound in many ways; especially on Football Saturdays (Homecoming Weekend = Off The Meter!) and special commemorations. So, I may not be a TU alum, but I am a true Tuskegeean (46!)… and trust me, that is way past close enough for me join in celebrating this.

See more footage and some of what students and Presidents Skipper and Johnson had to say on this occasion after the jump.

(Wonder if any of this made SportsCenter over the weekend? Best bet for worthy coverage is ESPN’s ‘The Six’ with Jemele Hill and Michael Smith.)

#ESPNSportsCenterTheme #TUBallandParlay #MCP #TUCommencement2017#CelebratingTUBestandBrightest

@ojones1

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The Atlanta Jazz Festival Celebrates 40 years: Memorial Day Weekend

 

It is cause for a Celebration because the Atlanta Jazz Festival is going into it’s 40th year of operation.  This is no small feat considering it is one of the top free Jazz Festivals in the country.  It all happens Memorial Day Weekend (May 26-28) at historic Piedmont Park in Atlanta, GA.  Three days filled with great music from Jazz legends and new artists on the rise.  We are talking about The Robert Glasper Experiment, Macy Gray, Regina Carter, and Freddy Cole just to name a few.  So if you are in Atlanta or the surrounding areas make your way to Piedmont park.  Get there early with your blanket, picnic basket and enjoy some great performances courtesy of the City of Atlanta.

ArtbyOdell Twitter / SoundCloud

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Hasan Minhaj (Of The Daily Show) Gives An Roast Epic Speech At The White House Correspondents’ Dinner (Video)

Ohhhhhh shhhheeeeeeeiiiit! I wanted to categorize this as comedy, but this is more. This is even more biting than mere satire; plenty of BITE. Don Rickles (RIP) level roasting of an entire room AND of The President… you know, at the WHITE HOUSE Correspondents’ event that they have EVERY year.

Daily Show correspondent Hasan Minhaj took full advantage of Donald Trump’s absence by taking aim at The President and his administration during his monologue at the White House Correspondents’ dinner.
Global News

I’m sure it was on his calendar. But hell, I cannot blame him. Some of this sh!t BURNED, but it seems like everyone took it in stride. And I do mean everyone, because ‘The Daily Show’ Correspondent Hasan Minhaj gave a taste to EVERYONE: Not just the POTUS, but key officials in his Administration, with shots for Fox News, CNN, MSNBC, even C-SPAN (who broadcasts the event annually)!

You HAVE to watch, but strap up and sack up. Hasan is hella funny, but his speech hits hella HARD! Whew.

@ojones1

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The Penn Relays 2017 by Jamaine Mungo For JAYFORCE.COM (Video)

A post shared by JayforceDotCom (@jayforcedotcom) on

Posted this little snip so you all can see what it is like to be in the midst of massive pure human energy on level 12! Anyone who might have seen the subject of this post and thought, “Penn Relays… so that’s a big deal?” YES! It’s a big tings a Gwan!!! Peace to the homie “Maine” for sharing this firsthand experience for this piece, too.

Began running track my freshman year in high school, attended Maple Shade High School, New Jersey. My events were 400m, 800m and the 4×400 meter relay. Along with my teammates, we always trained hard and wanted to win. Our mindset was that hard work pays off and it certainly did. The start of outdoor track & field started in March and we all knew that once April approached it would be time for the Penn Relays. We knew that once we stepped on that track at Penn Relays, it would be “Game Time”. It is an indescribable feeling of pure energy, excitement, and adrenaline once you step on to the track at Penn Relays.

After high school, I continued my track career at Virginia State University running the 400m, 800m and 4x400m events. Throughout my time at VSU, I ran the 4x400m, sprint medley and distant medley relay events at the Penn Relays. Every year that I’ve run at the Penn Relays, there was that same electrifying feeling was always there and I always ran my personal best time.

There is an overall natural feeling of excitement for any athlete from high school, collegiate to olympian who steps onto the track at the University of Pennsylvania for the Penn Relays. A majority of athletes run their fastest times at the track that is known as a “fast track”. The Penn Relay carnival kicks off on a Tuesday and goes until Saturday. Athletes range from all age groups from middle school, high school, college, Olympians, and masters groups whom still compete at the golden age of 75+ running the 100m dash.

This is the largest Track & Field competition that is hosted where you can see all forms of athletes from all different age groups, various events and guaranteed to see some fast times on the track from the world’s best athletes.

So, you got a stadium packed with 90,000 fans – cheering, shouting, blowing horns, rattling all kinds of noisemakers and reveling with each other –
transferring that energy to the athletes who are now overcharged to run their fastest. Tradition, excellence, positive potential energy turned kinetic in the best ways. The Penn Relays started in April 21st, 1895 and is showing no signs of slowing down. It continues to get larger each year. The last race this year ended early Saturday evening, and just like that, it is over… until next year! – Jamaine

Hit the jump for a couple of images of Jamaine Mungo from Penn Relays Years Ago.

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The 2017 NFL Draft Experience: Takeaways From JAYFORCE.COM Sports Team In Philadelphia

A post shared by JayforceDotCom (@jayforcedotcom) on

The 2017 NFL Draft In Philadelphia was the 1st time the NFL Draft would be held outdoors. The NFL draft in Philadelphia drew over 250,000 people with plenty of activities for adults & children a like as fans packed Philly’s Benjamin Franklin parkway up to Philadelphia’s Art Museum aka the “Rocky Steps” made famous by Sylvester Stallone.

There were a wide variety of activities in the park before & during the NFL draft that were free of charge most likely leveraged by the variety of corporate sponsors participating. Zip lines, kids events, & even a Lombardi trophy was on hand for fans to gawk or flick it up with.

A few things we noticed included the price of beers that were $12 a can which made it more difficult for anyone to get too rowdy & drunk during the festivities. Although the beers were expensive, the purified water at various stations throughout the park was free.

Public transportation from the suburbs & back on Philadelphia’s Regional trains was free for anyone who stepped foot on board. Philadelphia did an excellent job hosting the NFL Draft outdoors on the parkway.


Not only did it turn out successful, but it also allowed the NFL to break attendance records for the NFL Draft as various people were moved in & out of the seating area for a chance to witness the draft up close. Check out more video, pics, & thoughts from the Jayforce.com sports crew about the experience below…..

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Stephen Colbert With A ‘420 Monologue’ To (Not) Remember [Video]

Wonder if Stephen ever ‘inhaled’ though. But he and intern Stoney Von Dankington have this same convo every year on this date. Yes. THAT is the real meaning behind 4/20 – a commemoration of their hilarious conversation.

(That… and puff-puff-PASS maaaaan. Hahaaaa!)

@ojones1

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Detroit Artist-Producer Tall Black Guy Speaks On His ‘Playlist Retreat’ Experience (Video)

At first, watching this we’re going, “Really, Tall Black Guy. You feel the need to tell folks WHO The Magnificient DJ Jazzy Jeff is.” Then we think about it… Jeff has had an INCREDIBLE career that spans DECADES… appreciated by fans who were barely walking (or not even conceived) when he was with The Fresh Prince on the reg. So cool. Also cool, and very appreciated, is this clip of TBG speaking on how dope it was being at DJ Jazzy Jeff’s annual Playlist Retreat.

Dope! If you look back on here, TBG did a li’l som’n som’n on the 2015 event #DownSinceDayOne

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James Lewis “Love or Lust” (Video) & ATL Show

A little over a year ago I went to interview Waldo an emcee from Grand Rapids Michigan.  He was performing in Atlanta for the first time. He has worked side by side with the likes of Sango & Soulection music collective.  I posted the video on Jayforce.com and the visuals was shot by James Lewis.  He told me that night the show inspired him and that he wants to be more in front of the camera going forward.  Well fast forward and James Lewis is releasing quality material like his new track “Love or Lust”.  Oh and James Lewis is performing here in ATL March 30th at Aisle 5 opening up for you guessed it Waldo.  This didn’t happen by luck this came about from hard work and staying the course.  So check out the new visuals and make your way to Aisle 5 in Little 5 Points on Thursday March 30th for one heck of a show. Waldo, James Lewis, Cheeze Weez w/B.M.G., & Seventh!

CLICK HERE FOR PREVIOUS POST OF WALDO INTERVIEW SHOT BY JAMES LEWIS

-ArtByOdell Twitter/SoundCloud

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Roots Picnic 2017 (Promotional Video)

Ha! Kinda dope (actually, really dope, and hilarious) ad for the 10th Annual Roots Picnic on June 3rd, 2017. Back to the lab with it. Animated.

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The Most Epic Hip-Hop Showdown: Big Daddy Kane vs. Kool G Rap (Video)

You remember how the two dudes in the “Five Heartbeats” movie had that soul-singing battle on stage and made the lady fans faint? This Big Daddy Kane vs. Kool G Rap showdown… It’s like that. Yup. And that’s the way it is! Two Golden Era legends going head up; doing hit-for-hit in front of the fans. An intra-squad rhyme-sayer scrimmage between two of the Juice Crew.

Oh yeah, Masta Ace shows up later in the show to rock a short set, too. Click play and overdose on the dopeness already!

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Civil Rights Activist And Icon Dr. Bernard LaFayette On ‘Love Ultra Radio’ (Live Interview Tonight)

I felt such a rush, and a potent mix, of emotions once Love Ultra Radio green-lit this interview event. This will be something of a fireside chat with Dr. Bernard LaFayette – a living legend, civil rights warrior, and Kingian scholar (who even today teaches the history and methods of activism and nonviolent protest made known in the States by those aligned with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.). And shout out and respect to the bredren Jah Prince and super-producer Iman Lexington for throwing open the doors and welcoming Dr. Lafayette warmly.

Oh… and that hey-I-know-that-name feeling you are getting… that is because I recently mentioned his name in the opinion piece I posted a few weeks back about the Talledega College marching band playing President Trump’s inauguration (link that here).

Want to know what is so awesome, inspiring, and awe-inspiring? I did not really get to know Dr. LaFayette as the man who boldly walked with MLK Jr. and Jesus Christ since his youth. Nah, I got to know him as my high school principal back in Tuskegee, Alabama. I got to know him as the guy that cheered us on our sideline win, lose or lose badly. And as husband to my late Grandma’s longtime friend and across-the-street neighbor, Mrs. Kate (Bulls) LaFayette, who with my Aunt Tammie (Cottrell), helped me get this all set up for tonight.

Yep, and I got to know Dr. LaFayette as the Reverend who eulogized my beloved Grandma (another Tuskegee Legend) and presided over her home-going a couple of years back. Yeah. Doc took time from the never-ending work of uplifting and educating the people of the world, of ensuring that more and more of us learn to love and respect each other, to even fight for each other… without raising fists or firearms to do so… That man, came to sit with the family; share some memories and food; and wipe away a few tears.

Long enough story made only a bit longer: I am honored to know the man honored with the 2016 Mahatma Gandhi International Award for Reconciliation and Peace; and to know that he is NEVER to busy to talk to us… like he will tonight. I hope you will tune in to Love Ultra Radio tonight at 10pm EST to get to know him better, too. See the flyer above for details on the interview. And check out the linked article below for more info on the Doc.

MORE: CIVIL RIGHTS ICON STILL HAS WORK TO DO (DR. BERNARD LAFAYETTE)

@ojones1

First Ever No-Parachute Jump (Video)

Incredible. And crazy! Looks like a good idea… for a Bugs Bunny cartoon… or maybe the next Marvel movie of TV episode. Either way, fantasy has indeed become reality. Above, you can press play and watch the first ever jump, from an airplane to the Earth, pulled off with NO PARACHUTE!

@ojones1

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Opinion: Talladega College’s Marching Band Goes To Washington (Video)


Above: The Talladega College Marching Tornadoes march in the parade celebrating the Inauguration of the United States’ 45th President, Donald Trump. The music selection played in the clip…“Dreamin'” (appropos in a way).

Complicated. Mixed feelings. I could easily sort them out by sticking to my President Trump = Cobra Commander = Ultimate Evil algorithm… but Trump is who we got. He is The President now.

And these kids. Children. OUR children. What would they have ‘got’ from listening to me, or to the many who’d tell the Talladega College band to turn down an opportunity to perform for The President on National TV and get exposure and funding their school needs? What would they have ‘got’…? Nothing!

Now, that is no justification either… because back when Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and lifelong friend Ambassador Andrew Young and eventual U.S. Rep. John Lewis, CT Vivian, Dr. Bernard LaFayette and… what did THEY ‘got’ after being booed, beaten blue and bloody? Nothing! That’s what our heroes ‘got.’

I cannot, if I am real with my realest self, declare those TC band members ‘sellouts’ or say that they were fools for playing the Inauguration. Had I the talent and opportunity in that situation, I might have done the same or sent my kids if I had any. But being an official old man in the eyes of every student who went, I could have told them about optics (Omarosa being their ‘welcome committee’ and clamoring for selfies) AND what the event looks like from a historical perspective… melancholy at best.

Think of it this way: When you picture King, Lewis, Vivian, LaFayette and pictures from poignant moments of their youth… What do you see? Courage, strength in the face of adversity, a fight worth fighting, hope for the future. But when you see TC’s band in pics with Omarosa or playing the Inauguration…

That is for YOU to decide, perhaps over the next few years.

Either way, kids, the story ain’t over. By now you are back on campus. That scholarship money, new practice space, etc. can be used to learn to EXCEL… to prepare you to ENGAGE… to follow in the footsteps of the guy many of you hoped to see (Barack Obama) and CHANGE THE WORLD. You can take what ‘the man’ gave you and use it to fuel the revolution!

After all, Nat Turner ate the scraps ‘Massa’ threw at him and read the Bible he ‘let’ him have, kept up his strength and fueled his faith, THEN LED THE REVOLT!

@ojones1

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Event: Coalition DJs 9th Anniversary Celebration & Panel Discussion (Video)

Wow.

I would say, if you you were not at Atlanta’s Coalition DJs Anniversary Celebration and Longevity Panel event, you missed something special.

I would say that.

I might even go so far as to say that you took a major L this past Monday if you missed it. However, lucky for you, you know me. Even luckier for me, I am truly blessed to know, and be able to call in a favor from, Gerald Olivari of Black Vibes! Yep, G.O. went to the event and grabbed a lot of crucial footage: wisdom from the hearts and mouths of music industry insiders and grinders who have been at it for decades (some over 30 years). So, give thanks, because you are lucky not to have missed out out dopeness like this!

Start with Part 1 above, and absorb the knowledge that flowed with real (and raw, uncensored) conversation from the panelists assembled. On hand was DJ Toomp, KP, and more who have made hits (and money) with the likes of Dallas Austin, TI, Yelawolf, OutKast, Diddy… whew! And the gems they dropped, like:

Understand business… not just ‘the business’… first. This lesson even applies when you are cutting grass for a living: If you want to get paid, for real, DO THE WORK, for real!

If you want to excel as those you admire do, get around them and work like they do.

If you find yourself blessed with the opportunity to be around greatness, shut up and listen!

INFORMATION… that is a key to LONGEVITY.

Relationships go a LONG way!

Wise words well spoken…. applicable to music making AND to life in general! And that was just in the first half of the first part (above). You can keep going and growing with Part 2 after the jump. Got some Red Carpet pics for y’all, too. Shout out to Iman Lexington and public relations guru Amy Hanks (follow @AmyHanksPR) for putting us on to this opportunity as well. Just as you will learn from watching, real DJs and folks like Gerald (with his Black Vibes platform), I.Lex (with her connections and @ILexProject music & media consultancy), and my bro JayForce here just REALLY want artists they encounter to be good – for the culture and for themselves. So, watch this FREEbie intently; especially you artists and managers out there. Keep perfecting your craft and bettering your businesses.

This should help. Good luck!

@ojones1 aka The Mascot

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The Miami Heat Retires Its Shaquille O’Neal #32 Jersey (Video)

Miami doing the right thing: Retiring the jersey & number of the man who helped bring the franchise its first NBA title… Shaquille O’Neal. Great ceremony. Moms rolling in the scale replica ‘Shaq Diesel’ rig, Coach Pat Riley lavishing the big man with justly deserved praise, and much more. Great watch.

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Dominique Wilkins Rocks ‘2 Chainz’ In 3-Point Shootout (Video)

Three-point shoot-out between two Atlanta icons makes for one hell of a vid! Highly entertaining, and we got it cued up for you above. The Human Highlight Reel is nice shooting that pill …still! Wonder if 2 Chainz could talk him into stepping into the booth, though? He did ask about performing as part of the bet. Hmmm. NBA Ballers do be trying to rap. Hahaaa!

(The 2 Chainz rant about possible Russian involvement, too. A must see! Oh, and 2 Chainz is rocking the home crowd at Philips Arena on December 30, 2016. Ought to be a great event all-around.)

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Event: My City, 4 Ways Atlanta (Video)

My-City-4-Ways

Essence Magazine and Ford kicked off their ‘My City, 4 Ways Atlanta’ event at the Mason Fine Art Gallery in Atlanta (Georgia, USA) this past Saturday, December 10th, with a blend of food, music, art and style featuring some of the city’s influencers such as Anthony David, Algebra, Tweet, Loni Love, Chef Ahki, Erica Key, Kenya Freeman, Kashmir Thompson and DJ Princess Cut.

(More, including video clips, after the jump.)

Carmen Breezy

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Watch This Record-Breaking 593-Foot Basketball Shot (Video)

Now, that’s how you go viral! Film yourself as you take a shot – sure. Back up…far – okay. Now go up…All The Way Up (pause for music break, haa!)… Up in the Swiss Alps (WHAT?!) Nowww take that shot. Like Derek Herron did here #Swish

(Nothing but NET!)

@ojones1

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KRS-ONE Live In Concert (Video)

Turn the music UP! KRS-ONE aka The Teacha is coming through live and direct!!! Real Hip-Hop is over here. Two and a half of it in fact. What have we done for you lately? This! Peep.

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The White House Welcomes The 2016 NBA Champions Cleveland Cavaliers (Video)

Come back from a 3-1 situation to win the NBA Finals… and a trip to the White House. How dope is that?

Please watch footage from the Cavs visit with the U.S. President and First Lady, as well as Vice President Joe Biden. And reeeeally watch as Present Obama daps-and-back-pats the bruhs while offering ‘official’ handshakes to the rest. Just like on Key & Peele. Hahaa!

Respect and honor to the veterans assembled there, and to all who’ve served. Just like First Lady Michelle Obama and the Cavs showed.

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