#TimeTitles: The Best of Black Twitter Taking on TIME Magazine

#TimeTitles: The Best of Black Twitter Taking on TIME Magazine

Yesterday, TIME published an article on their site titled “This is What ‘Bae’  Means.” Pharrell’s video for single “Come Get It Bae” coupled with speculations about the origin of the term were used as references from which the author gathered her information for the term of affection. Yes, please tell me more about this term I’ve been using for years.

In true “when something cool goes mainstream”…

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Estelle Prepares for a Triumphant Album Release with Premiere of Video for Single ‘Conqueror’

Victoriously resilient, Estelle makes her return with new single “Conqueror” from her forthcoming LP True Romance.  Expected this fall November 4th, much is to be anticipated on the independent project.

Life as a Sideman: John Coltrane’s Three-Part Anthology is Here

Life as a Sideman: John Coltrane’s Three-Part Anthology is Here

Over in the wonderful world of Jazz, 2014 has been about the commemoration of Blue Note Records—the respected jazz label welcomes its 75th anniversary. In celebration of a noteworthy run, the label Coltrane Feat 2has decided to release a series of Blue Note Select collections for Clifford Brown, John Coltrane, Miles Davis and Thelonious Monk, each with original recordings sequenced as they were initially…

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Writer, Producer Lena Waithe Named Brand Ambassador for Sir Vincent [+ GIVEAWAY]

Earlier this year neckwear designer, Sir Vincent teamed up with writer, producer Lena Waithe who’s name and/or work you’ve seen if you’ve ever been to The Visibility Project before today.

Possibly best known for “Shit Black Girls Say” or the pilot presentation of her upcoming television series, Twenties, which will receive a full pilot shot by BET in the fall, Waithe is much more than her credits…

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Here’s What You Missed: Bros Before Hos Screening & Social Media Party

Twenty-two minutes and a trip to the ATM later I parked and was headed into the sumptuous confines of St. Felix in Hollywood, Canon in hand. I wasn’t sure what I expected (I never go out but this was something I couldn’t miss), I just know I certainly wasn’t expecting this—especially not this early in the evening.

The rear of the restaurant-lounge was filled, nearly wall-to-wall, with good-looking Black people – and others. It wasn’t quite 8:30 and the place was packed. Before I took the few steps down into The Powder Room, the rear lounge, I was able to see the adjacent patio that looked a bit less crowded. At the very least it was open and outdoors and my 5’ 1 ¾” frame wouldn’t get lost.


As I made my journey to freedom I ran into Benjamin Cory Jones, writer and creator of the Bros Before Hos pilot presentation that had all of these cool kids assembled in one room. He greeted me with the same earnestness and excitement I’ve grown to expect from The Resurgence and told me to let him know if I needed anything during the event.

It was a screening and social media party, where you’re encouraged to take as many selfies, usies, and snapshots as possible and post, tweet and do it for the ‘gram all night long in an effort to spread the word—and make everyone not in attendance jealous. Check the hashtags. The comments (and messages from fellow staff members of The ViP) say it worked like a charm.

BB4H-3308Bros Before Hos is a television pilot presentation for a semi-autobiographical comedy about three brothers, two straight, one gay, each dealing with modern-day issues in Los Angeles while trying to find love, but screwing shit up along the way. The presentation stars Dijon Talton, Kevin Phillips, Americo “Tuffy” Questall, Dana Sorman, Nia Jervier and Kristopher Gordon and was directed and executive produced by Anthony Hemingway.

The usual mingling occurred up until about 9:00pm when the screening took place on two screens. Standing in the middle of the two, just behind actors, Ashley Blaine Featherson and Nia Jervier, who stars in the pilot presentation, I glanced back and forth between each screen depending on which guest’s awesomely large natural hair was blocking my view.

I took special note of the calm with which Jervier viewed her own performance. Many actors have this thing where they find it hard to watch themselves on screen, often cringing until it’s over. Only later, during a 3am Twitter session, would I discover she’s no different in that department and the calm exterior was in part thanks to the whispers of support from Featherson. I’m sure the loud cheers that came from different parts of the room when she first appeared on screen and the applause that came after helped a bit as well.

Throughout most of the screening the audience was quiet, tuned-in as though it was their first time viewing it. The full pilot presentation had been released early that morning so I can’t say for sure who’d seen it and who hadn’t but everyone was playing close attention. There are receipts to prove it:

BB4H - CrowdWatching Photo courtesy of @bdotlaw on Instagram

The other round of applause and sporadic cheers came at the opening and closing of Americo “Tuffy” Questal’s and Dana Sorman’s scene, easily the funniest scene of the pilot presentation.

After the screening Jones took the mic, made a few introductions and gave a lot of thank yous before passing it off to the pilot presentation’s producer, Lena Waithe who did much of the same with extra emphasis on the significance of what we’d just watched and the importance of the audience. Both encouraged, empowered, and implored everyone present to take matters into their own hands and demand “better Black TV” by being as vocal—literally and figuratively—as possible about their desire to see Bros Before Hos on network television. Shortly after, folks started to disperse about the venue a bit, creating extra breathing room for the more than 250 guests in attendance.

The party wasn’t over—not by a long shot. The promotional flyer for the event stated it would be “musically illustrated by DJ B-Hen” and that is about as apt a description as they could have given. As a music artist I’ve been around a lot of DJs for many years now and not only am I impressed by very few, I’m disappointed by most, often times opting to tune out the predictable digitally crafted playlist in favor of ambient noise or the thoughts in my head. DJ B-Hen impressed me. For that he deserves a special shoutout for being a highlight of the evening.



On the surface, Orphan Black is a science fiction show that explores the ethical implications of cloning and the lives of individuals who find out they are clones. Look one level deeper, though, and Orphan Black is a hidden gem of a dramedy with a touch of horror. It is a breath of fresh air with a myriad of perspectives on human identity — particularly female identity.

Last week, I brought up the problem of limiting fictional female characters into “strong” or “weak” categories. That’s not a problem on Orphan Black, as each character is thoroughly drawn-out and layered (and, thanks to Maslany’s performance, distinguishable — it’s common to forget that she’s often in the scene more than once, interacting with herself). In the first season, the clone considered the least threat ends up murdering someone — and it’s completely in character.

Naturally, the show uses its array of characters to explore different perspectives on different issues, particularly issues that affect women. Through the Clone Club, we see a variety of perspectives on sex, including different sexual identities. Sarah has no problem using sex as a tool to get what she wants. Alison’s attitude toward sex is heavily influenced by what she thinks her neighbors will think about her. Cosima identifies as a lesbian, and when she begins a relationship, it doesn’t fall into the one-dimensional categories of “functional” or “dysfunctional.” Rather, it is nuanced and refreshing as both women team up to solve the mysterious health problems that affect many of the clones while dealing with philosophical differences and their respective loyalties.

Another issue explored in depth is motherhood. Sarah, one of the few clones who is able to carry a pregnancy to term, has a child, Kira. Helena desperately wants a child and is literally willing to go through torture to have one. Alison is a mother to her two adoptive children but admits that she sees Kira as her own child since they share DNA. On the other hand, Kira is quick to accept her mother’s clones as maternal figures.


The thing about teasers is that they are supposed to lead to something more, something even better. The brilliant folks over at Dear White People headquarters get that. Shortly after the announcement of the film’s nationwide premiere date they released a teaser trailer to whet our appetites. Monday afternoon fans were told, with 100 retweets and 1000 shares on Facebook, we could see the full trailer before it hits theaters this weekend. In less than 24 hours (almost instantly on Twitter) – mission accomplished.

The full trailer for the highly anticipated indie darling turned Lionsgate production, Dear White People, has been released. Starring Tessa Thompson (For Colored Girls), Dennis Haysbert (24), Teyonah Parris (Mad Men) and Tyler James Williams (Everybody Hates Chris), with a crop of brilliant fresh faces of color (Ashley Blaine Featherson, Courtney Sauls, Nia Jervier, Marque Richardson, Naomi Ko) rounding out a remarkable ensemble cast, Dear White People is the film that so many have been waiting for.

The full trailer is two minutes and 37 seconds of poignant comedy and thought-provoking sound-bites – a pretty apt summary of the film that writer, director, Justin Simien says is one about identity not race. Dear White People is a smart, hilarious and ever-relevant look into the lives of four Black students – Lionel, Sam, Coco and Troy – at the fictional Winchester University, where the population of Blacks is a mere 2%.

We’ve already seen the film and we’re still anticipating the October 17th release as much as the next person. We say with immense certainty that the Lena Waithe-produced Dear White People is the first and best deliberately conscious, non-struggle Black film we’ve seen on the big screen in easily the last five years.


Are you familiar with the First Lady of Black & Sexy TV (Hello Cupid, RoomieLoverFriends, The Couple, A Good Day to be Black & Sexy), Miss Numa Perrier?

If not, you’re about to be this Wednesday at TheVisibilityProject.com

Photos by KAMMs TheACE. Profile by B. Alexandra.

Orphan Black’s Exploration of Character and Morality Makes It a Standout

Orphan Black’s Exploration of Character and Morality Makes It a Standout

On the surface, Orphan Black is a science fiction show that explores the ethical implications of cloning and the lives of individuals who find out they are clones. Look one level deeper, though, and Orphan Black is a hidden gem of a dramedy with a touch of horror. It is a breath of fresh air with a myriad of perspectives on human identity — particularly female identity.

ORPHAN BLACK - 5 clonesOrphan Black, the BBC…

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What does It mean to be Hillman Alum? - hillmangrad withlovefromlyn  msbribap & other alum soundoff

Not too long after the accidental success of our first Xavier University Alumni design I got the inspiration to create a Hillman Alumni version. Hulu had just announced it would be carrying the entire series of A Different World, news that sent me and fellow stans of the classic TV show in a (not-so) temporary frenzy. I got the idea to do a Hillman Alum design and let it marinate for a bit.

Around the same time the Twitter handle @HillmanGrad stumbled across my timeline. It looked familiar; we used to follow each other back during the height of my music days in New Orleans. Why we stopped I can’t remember. (I had no chill back then, Vans glued to my soapbox, so it wouldn’t surprise me if she jumped shipped first and remembering who I was in my immediate post-college days I wouldn’t blame her.)

The bottom line is she and her epic Twitter name popped back up and her username alone prompted the natural stalker researcher in me to do some digging. Lena Waithe. Screen writer, producer, show creator, loyal fan of A Different World.

The response to the design got me thinking: What does it mean to be Hillman Alum?