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ENTERTAINMENT NEWS:

1. Regina King will direct 'Bitter Root.' Plot: For generations, the Sangeryes hunted and cured those infected by a supernatural force which fed off prejudice to turn humans into hideous monsters but with most of the clan dead and the surviving members of the family at odds between killing or saving the creatures, they must overcome the difficulties of their past in the hope of staving off an invasion.

 

Regina - who won widespread critical acclaim for her directorial debut, 'One Night in Miami' - has a busy few months ahead as it was announced in February she will also star in and produce 'Shirley', a biopic about America's first Black congresswoman, Shirley Chisholm which will be written and directed by John Ridley.

2. Atlanta rapper Gucci Mane has money to blow - $1 million to be exact. The hip-hop veteran has come forward to let the world know he's determined to drop life-changing stacks on the "hardest unsigned" musician before the clock strikes midnight.

3. Nicki Minaj's nude snap in a pair of custom hot pink Crocs reportedly caused a 4,900 per cent spike in sales of the footwear.

4. Caleb Kennedy -- who was one of the final 5 contestants on this season of "American Idol" -- is no longer in the running to win after a video surfaced showing him sitting next to someone wearing a Klan-like hood.

 

The country singer just announced his departure from 'Idol' saying ... "Hey y'all, this is gonna be a bit of a surprise." He adds ... "There was a video that surfaced on the internet and it displayed actions that were not meant to be taken in that way."

 

Caleb claims the video is from when he was younger and he "did not think about the actions" ... but says that's no excuse. He's apologized to his fans and people he disappointed and says he's going to take time to better himself.

 

The singer closes by saying ... "I'm so sorry! I pray that I can one day regain your trust in who I am and have your respect."

5. A couple of firefighters on the scene of the Kobe Bryant helicopter crash are getting their walking papers for snapping photos of crash victims ... so claims Vanessa Bryant's lawyers.

COMMENT

IS THE DARKNET AFFILIATED WITH MISSING BLACK WOMEN?

PART 1:

Currently, nearly 70,000 black women have vanished in the last decade without a trace.

Some are forced into sex trafficking while others are used for medical experiments and then you have victims who become domestic slaves for white racist families and blacks being used in "staged hunts" where people hunt them in the woods like animals.

The Darknet is about supply and demand, and according to our deep web source, the following sinister site has popped up:

Recently, an advertisement announced:

 

We have sheds full of people in different countries and in different conditions (ranging from homeless to people kidnapped in NYC and slaves bought in from third world countries); the majority of the victims were black.

These victims were auctioned off for medical experiments, race play captives and sex trafficking.

"For whatever sum of money you could supposedly have whatever immoral medical experiments run on these people. The company also provided information on which substance to kill the victims with when the buyer became bored and they provided information on how to cause a spontaneous abortion.

They also offered a guide on how to turn a person into a living sex doll that couldn't communicate.

"Severed vocal chords, limbs, and replacing the teeth with silicone dental dams. The site claimed to have kidnapped multiple women which were subjected to this vile act."

Their sex auction (bidding started at $150,000) featured a woman thrashing around with her arms tied behind her back, and the rope connected to a wire frame, she would lurch forward as the shadow of a man loomed in the background.

 

Text underneath her image, included breast size, weight, and stated  that she is free from sexually transmitted diseases. 

PART II:

LaQuanta Riley was last seen getting into a dark green Ford Taurus or Chevrolet Caprice near her home.

 

It’s unknown who or how many people were in the car with her. About a week after her disappearance her mother, Pam Riley, received a disturbing message. She said the 19-year-old could be heard crying out: “leave me alone” or “let me go home.”

 

Riley said she heard a man’s voice say LaQuanta’s name before the message ended. No further contact has been made, and she has never been found.  

Nanette Thomas’ family hasn’t heard from her since the day she vanished on April 9, 2016.

 

They knew something was wrong when they heard from Thomas’ employer that she hadn’t appeared at work in days.

 

It didn’t make sense. She was a loyal employee who rarely missed a day.

 

When they went to her Eastdale apartment, near Atlanta Highway, she wasn’t there, and there were no signs of struggle. Everything seemed to be in order. But police believe she went missing from her apartment complex.

Lakira Goldsmith has been missing since Nov. 27, 2018. While police say she was last seen on Narrow Lane Road, her mother, Marchelle Goldsmith, believes that she may have been in the Newtown neighborhood, based on reports from people who may have seen her that day.

 

Her 21st birthday passed in July. Her mother has said there have been no new leads or updates, despite the massive effort she has mounted passing out flyers and talking to people in the community about her daughter’s whereabouts.

 

She worries for Lakira, who suffers from asthma, and her toddler who has been without his mother for almost a year. 

TINSEL CONFIDENTIAL:

Next is a group that will forever be tied into the lineage of 90’s R&B history with the way they impacted the genre and the legacy they’ve created. With crossover pop hits like “Too Close” and “Wifey” among others, they were able to surpass just about all of their peers in chart success.

interview Conducted By: YouknowIgotsoul:

YouKnowIGotSoul: Discuss the history of Next and how you were originally discovered.

 

RL: It’s funny, when the guys met Kay Gee, I was at soundcheck. We were opening up for Aaliyah the night before. Nature performed at 1st Avenue on a Saturday. Aaliyah performed at Glam Slam, which was Prince’s club, the night before. I was at soundcheck and the guys were at The Mall of America getting a wardrobe, and they ran into Kay Gee. He told them to come to the show. We left a demo with Kay Gee and he had it on the tour bus. Prince’s DJ Brother Jules was on the tour bus talking to Kay Gee, and Kay had told him he was looking for talent. Brother Jules told him we were the dopest act in the city, and our demo tape was right there on the bus. All of the sudden, Kay Gee called us. I thought it was a joke.

 

We were flown out to New York City, and we had on flip flops and sweat suits. We literally got off of the plane and went straight to The Apollo. We were there when it was Biggie, AZ, Puff Daddy, The Lost Boyz & Nature performing. We looked down and there were church fans on the seats, and it said “Illtown’s New Lineup” and it had all these different groups including our group Straight4ward, which we were called at the time. We were shocked. After the show, we went to Kay Gee’s house, he had a big mansion, the pool, the basketball court.

 

When we woke up, they were setting up his 1st annual Boogie Night party. Mike Tyson, Queen Latifah, anybody you could think of that was a star was at this cookout.

 

This was our first taste of being around these people. We weren’t signed or anything. Next thing you know, we were staying with Kay Gee. I was the youngest out of the group.

 

The others would go home on the weekends, they had girlfriends or kids or whatever. I didn’t have anywhere to go. My parents had recently left Minneapolis and moved to San Diego. I was sleeping on the floor on Kay Gee’s back house in the room next to Jaheim (RL wrote "Just In Case") for Jaheim.

 

Every time I’d hear Kay Gee come in, I’d make sure I was dressed and had my teeth brushed, and sit in the studio with him. That’s how I was able to write so many records for Jaheim and Next. The guys would go home to visit their families, and I literally lived, eat, drank, slept music. I was at an advantage to learn under one of the best producers of my generation. That’s how I got started.

YouKnowIGotSoul: What’s next for Next?

 

RL: It's probably a wrap for Next after the 2019 tour.

 

We might do shows here and there, but I don’t even know. We have a whole album done. It’s disappointing because, you know all that we went through as a group. I love my group members. I’m probably closer to T-Low now than Tweet, and it used to be the opposite. They’re real brothers, so you have different dynamics.

 

They grew up together in the same house.

 

Regardless of how wrong one might be, they will always be brothers. They are great guys, we make a great team, it’s never been about thinking I’m bigger than the group. When I went solo, people always thought I got a big head, but didn’t realize I got put out of the group.

 

They didn’t realize the name that I came up with was secretly trademarked behind my back, and I recently just got a part back.

 

I’ll say this. Sometimes it’s about the people you surround yourself with. Tweet is super talented. He’s never been the vocalist even though he can sing. But he played his role. He was the spokesperson, he was the body, he was the personality.

 

But if someone is in his ear telling him he can do more or other things, then you start thinking you need to do more. When you have success and the resources, you move away and you’re not around each other every day.

 

Growing up, I was dependent on them because I didn’t have a car. We had to be around each other. We were always together. When success comes, you have different friends or a girl. You might have a family. You have different influences and they are telling you different things.

 

We did a whole album and I heard my album was dated. But the record I did with Lil Duval, I did in 2014.

 

So if it’s so dated, why did it climb the charts?

 

But this came from one of my group members! He wants to do rap. He feels he wants a whole different vibe.

 

I understand because I’ve been there, in a place where I’ve doubted what I know, the integrity of music.

 

Maybe I need to do what’s on the radio? Maybe I need to be more trendy. I call it musical menopause. When you get older, you get a few grey hairs, you start looking in the mirror.

 

You start questioning all of the skills you’ve learned over the years of being in this industry. It took me awhile to say No, let me do what I know. I don’t want to be dated, but I don’t want to be that dude where people say “Mannn, he’s doing that too?” We are separating.

 

I’m working on a project for T-Low. I think he can be the new Dave Hollister or Gerald LeVert. He’s a teddy bear, he has that smooth voice. He’s just never put himself in the fore front.

 

Tweet is working on a rap project with his son, and I wish that well.

 

My favorite saying is “I wish everybody well, I just wish me better."

 

I’m working on me over here.

 

With groups, sometimes it’s ego, but a lot of times it’s the opposite.

 

It’s insecurity that pushes you away from each other.

 

My main objective is to make good music, feed my family, and have fun.

On May 7, 1966, Ray Charles' company plane, the Buzzard, carried the complete troupe (1 genius, 4 Raelettes, 16 musicians, manager Joe Adams, a roadie and Ray's personal assistant) from Los Angeles to New York.

One of the cats in the back of the plane was Bobby Womack. who was hired as a guitar player in the first leg of the Ray Charles 1966 USA tour (which started on March 22 and ended in July). In his biography Midnight Mover: The True Story of the Greatest Soul Singer in the World (John Blake, 2007), he shared a few vivid memories of flying with Ray:

 

“A blind man playing chess was one thing, but flying a plane - now that was different. The first time it happened it tripped me out. I got aboard the rig we were flying on. It seated about 40 and all the band was there. It was Ray Charles’ own plane and I saw him up front in the cockpit clicking all kinds of switches and flipping buttons.

 

[A]s soon as we hit the air, the buckle was off and Ray raced up the aisle towards the cockpit. I said, 'Where's he going? He never runs like that when he's going on stage to play the piano.'

The pilot handed the controls to Ray. One of the band members filled me in. 'Ray always takes over the controls.'

That freaked me out. 'Oh, Jesus me. Dear Lord,' I prayed. 

The auditions for Ray's 1966 "comeback band" probably had taken place by late February or early March. Bobby remembered:

 

"I sat at the audition with my guitar and a book of music in front of me. The book was about an inch thick. I didn't open the book. Ray walked in. He shouted out a bunch of numbers, like 48, 92, 31, 15.

Then he said, 'These are the songs that we're going to play on these page numbers [...]. I still didn't open the book, just looked ahead - waiting. Someone must have pointed that out.

 

Ray said, 'You know, young man, you ought to open your book.

 

I said, 'I don't read music, Mr. Charles, I play by ear.'

 

He laughed. Then spat out 31.

 

I left the book unopened, but joined in.

 

Suddenly Ray stopped the band. 'Second trumpet player. You are flat, tune up.' The guy tuned up.

Ray kept switching song, going from one number to another, trying to lose me, I'm sure. I kept up. I was in there playing. He stopped the band. 'OK,' he said to me, 'just you and me play.' Then to the band, 'See what kind of ears this guy really got?'

 

He didn't know how I did it, but he was impressed."

"To play in the Ray Charles band, all the new guys had to get themselves kitted out in the house style. Man, that was the opposite of slick.

 

To save money, the suits were handed down. Every musician who left Ray's band or retired passed their suit on to the new guy, so these outfits were well past retirement age.

 

They were high water pants, but high water hadn't been in fashion that century.

 

Also, the last guy who wore my jacket must have weighed 300 pounds.

 

It was a whacky mess; the coat was supposed to be beige, but had faded yellow, there were patches in the ass. There were name tags in it going back to the stone age.

DATING APP HORRORS:

Revenge pursuits generally lead to unpleasant situations for everyone involved. Matthew Herrick experienced an incredibly unique revenge plot from an ex-boyfriend he met on Grindr. Over five months, Herrick had 1,100 men show up at his Manhattan home and workplace expecting sex or drugs.

 

Herrick’s ex had created fake Grindr accounts starting in October 2016 with Herrick’s photos and personal details. He also added lies, e.g., Herrick is HIV positive and enjoys rape fantasy and role-play.

 

These lies explained to suiters why Herrick might appear resistant when they show up for sex.

 

The strangers wouldn’t take “no” for an answer and even followed Herrick into the bathroom at work.

 

In April 2017, Herrick sued Grindr for allowing the incident to occur.

 

His lawyers questioned Grindr’s legal and ethical responsibilities when users abuse the platform, especially since there were over 100 reports on Grindr’s app flagging the fake profiles.

A Reddit user shared a disturbing account online of her experience with a man she met through OkCupid. Although she thought he was cute, there were red flags all throughout their dinner conversation. They went to the movies, and during the trailers, he began to masturbate. She explains, “He just unzipped his pants and started going at it, and I sat next to him horrified!”He justified his actions by saying every normal person jerks off in movie theaters. Um…okay… Next, he tried to have sex with her, which she declined. She moved across to the other side of the theater to watch the movie in peace. 

Sexual assault is, sadly, a genuine threat women face when they are dating.

 

And nothing proves this point more than Georgia-native Zach Anderson.

 

Kelly Neagle met Anderson on OkCupid.

 

She recalls him being a good-looking man who shared the same hobbies and interests as her.

 

After a week of exchanging messages, they decided to meet at a grill and pub.

 

“He just seemed like a normal, charming guy,” Neagle said.

 

It wasn’t until they got into his car in the parking lot after drinks that “a switch went off.” He became aggressive, grabbed her thigh hard, and pulled her pants down before pulling the lever on the passenger side seat. He proceeded to sexually assault her.

 

Neagle contacted OkCupid to warn them they had a rapist on their site. However, the site said they couldn’t find his profile. It turned out that Anderson had multiple OkCupid profiles, and his real name was Devin Richard Hartman.

 

Hartman was a married father of three and a serial rapist.

 

It was around two years later that Neagle got the opportunity to help put him away. In June 2014, Hartman had drugged and raped another woman, 28-year-old Jillian, after a date in midtown

 

Atlanta. Jillian woke up at her apartment doorstep with no keys, no underwear, body aches, and blood around her private parts. Jillian went to the hospital and told the police her story.

 

Investigations found that Jillian appeared disorientated after grabbing drinks with Hartman.

 

Police later saw her on camera coming out of his car an hour later before a security guard helped her home in a taxi.In late 2015, the courts convicted Hartman of rape and aggravated sodomy for his assault on Jillian. Three other women besides Neagle testified at his trial.

 

The Superior Court Judge Constance Russell called Hartman a “predator” and sentenced him to two consecutive life sentences.

 

Jillian recalls, “I was on a date with a monster, and I had no idea.”

A London Metropolitan Police officer, Gordon Semple, met 51-year-old Stefano Brizzi on the dating app Grindr.

 

They decided to meet up at Brizzi’s apartment, where Brizzi strangled Semple to death. Inspired by the show Breaking Bad, Brizzi tried to dismember Semple’s body in an acid-filled bath. Ugh, terrible.

 

Although Brizzi doesn’t remember doing this because he was high on crystal meth, prosecutors explained he also tried to eat Semple’s flesh.

 

Double terrible! Police found Semple’s body in the oven, in a tea strainer, and on chopsticks.

 

There was also Brizzi’s bite mark on the rib. Triple terrible.In 2016, the courts sentenced Brizzi to life in prison.

 

However, Brizzi hanged himself two months into his sentence. 

COMMENT