July 2003

Volume 14

July 2, 2003

Jury: Disregard

On TV when judges tell juries to disregard something a witness or attorney said…doesn't it make you think to yourself, yea, like they're really gonna forget what they just heard. If they've been given a shocking, vital, relevant piece of information, would people really manually disregard it when making their decision (even if it is a TV show).    

Fans Fighting

Have you ever noticed a person hate a song that sounds good, refusing to like it because it's performed by someone who is their favorite singer's rival. However, if their favorite singer performed it they would think it is great. Never let a singer become your life to the point that it makes you that irrational.

Web Site Registrations

Web sites that make you register to view content. I think that is a nuisance. There is a music site that I like, which contains a sign-up feature, but each time I clean the internet cookies from my computer, I have to reregister on their site. There isn't even a log-in feature. I've registered on that site about 20 times already this year under the same name and the site doesn't even realize it. It would be good if they changed that feature.

RIAA File Swapping Lawsuits

The RIAA is preparing lawsuits against five individuals who have file-swapping sites. These individuals made a lot of songs available on line that did not belong to them. 

From the RIAA press release: "The law is clear and the message to those who are distributing substantial quantities of music online should be equally clear --- this activity is illegal, you are not anonymous when you do it, and engaging in it can have real consequences," said RIAA president Cary Sherman.

It seems to be a sort of test case, as the RIAA web site also states, "The RIAA expects to use the data it collects as the basis for filing what could ultimately be thousands of lawsuits charging individual peer-to-peer music distributors with copyright infringement. The first round of suits could take place as early as mid-August." 

Affirmative Action

The Supreme Court upheld Affirmative Action. I think it is good, because not everyone would hire a minority, even if they were the most qualified. Many racists will not hire minorities if they don't have to, but affirmative action forces them to.  

There are many intelligent, capable minorities out there, but they are often overlooked because of their race. If it weren't for affirmative action, many people wouldn't have the scholarships or jobs they do. Some may feel it is not fair to force people into hiring minorities (don't get excited racists, that's not where I'm headed with this) but if you are an officer of a publicly held corporation responsible for hiring staff, uh, it's not your company, so who are you to discriminate in the first place regarding who you don't want working there.

Some people make me laugh with their arrogant, delusional attitude regarding corporations they work for and do not own - companies who if it did not suit their revenues, would fire them (an employee) with the same quickness that employee used when dismissing job applications from minorities.

 

July 4, 2003

Singers Firing Managers

Recently, I've been reading about a few singers who have dropped their managers. I don't know the details of what is going on in those cases, but I would like to write about that topic.

There are hundreds of managers in the music industry, but I only rate three and even they have flops. That's how unpredictable the job can be. It is often very unwise to break a contract with your manager, as good management is hard to find. Many singers have fired managers and later regretted it. 

Some managers do breach their contracts and do a bad job. Anyone can say they are a manager, but it takes someone with certain skills to produce the desired results. 

Why is it when there is any kind of a problem in some singers careers they think, oh fire the manager. An inept manager can do a lot of damage with unwise decisions, but singers cause a lot of the problems.

The problems sometimes lie with the singer for doing things that hurt their career. For instance, some singers are willing to play along with the record company and their manager to promote a squeaky clean lifestyle/image in order to appeal to more people and become rich, but if they fall due to their behavior, they blame the label and their management, when many of these people tried to get them to calm down. 

They knew what they were doing when they took the money, but they blame everyone else. The label and manager didn't tell you to go out there and drink, smoke and sleep around. How was that the manager's fault? 

Some managers are glorified babysitters. Their job - to keep their singer from doing something that will destroy their career. By far, those are the worst management jobs. The singers that have been in the music industry a few years and don't know it, but think they do.   

Many managers do their jobs as they are employed to, but still get dropped anyway for other reasons. These management disputes are usually an excuse singers use to get out of contracts. Several people have done that. It is usually entertainers wanting to get out of their contract to find some one to manage them for a lower fee or to manage themselves.

Many of the people who do this end up hurting their careers. Why? The music industry is not a science, just because you've observed what your manager does, doesn't mean you can do it. It's not like baking a cake, where if you follow the recipe it will turn out right. Some people aren't good at management - they learn the industry and the procedures, but they lack certain key ingredients that no amount of observation can teach you. As my former English teacher Mrs. Arias once said, you can't teach creativity.

Some managers make the understandable error of getting attached to their singers. Singers can be some of the most ungrateful people out there; it's not a wise thing to do. Fame inflates some, not all, singers egos and causes them to wrongfully believe everyone is there to serve them.

Some entertainers feel that because they are on stage getting the attention and the manager and label are not, they are the one that is important and everyone else is expendable, when the fact of the matter is singers are the most expendable people in the industry, courtesy of the audience's fickleness. Never mind most managers careers last longer than many singers. Another thing, why is it everyone else can see this, but the singer. 

Not all singers are like that, but many are and between the labels, managers and audience we create these monsters. You hype them up in the press to help boost sales - it works really well, too well, as some singers start believing the hype you put out there. You know, you really should sit them down and tell them that you wrote that stuff to hype them up to the public, lest they get confused and start thinking they are the best thing since Bach.

When you hype people up too much, chances are they are not gonna live up to all that hype. People can tell when attention and praise are undeserved. I don't believe in hype. If you are talented, that is enough. Let the audience make those decisions.  

What happens when the singer isn't as famous anymore or another singer comes along who can sing better or is a better instrumentalist and your singer can't deal with it. You're the one that's gonna have to deal with those tantrums. 

God blessed me with the ability to sing, play instruments, write, produce and several other things. I'm very appreciative of it. I don't go around thinking I'm the most talented, nor do I try to outdo other people. I saw a musician last year, who plays more instruments than I do. I didn't get envious, my reaction was one of being happy for him and seeing the things we have in common. I started telling people how good of a musician he is. I recommended him to someone recently. 

I would mention him on here, but after what happened with certain mainstream singers ripping me off, I won't post his link on here. I want him to properly launch his project without interference or anyone ripping it off and putting out their version in the mainstream before he does. I don't want to have any part in anyone ripping him off. They did it to me and I know they would be reprehensible enough to do that to him as well (that's part of the reason I sometimes do not name certain people on the site, only referring to them by their country or first names).  

With some singers it's the opposite. They see someone who sings better or plays more instruments and they get petty, jealous and feel threatened. With some of them, you can see it on their faces when they are in the same room with the other singer or when the other singer's name is mentioned. Those types of singers do one or all of the following:     

1. Become hateful and jealous.

2. Try to rip off the other entertainer's act.

3. Try to damage the other entertainer's career.

Why? because they've been trained or trained themselves into thinking they are the best. Some singers talents are very unique and they won't be outdone, they've exhibited some great talent over the years, but most singers usually are outdone by someone else or some record is broken. That's just how the industry works, it's been happening for decades, but when you train a singer to think otherwise and indulge certain things, you're begging for trouble. 

Regarding these disputes, people shouldn't be surprised in some cases, as anyone willing to prostitute themselves for fame will not hesitate in being ruthless. For you to get to a certain point where you have no shame and do not hesitate in doing questionable things, it says your conscience is seared.

A seared conscience is a term referred to in the Bible as when you no longer have any reservations about doing things that are considered wrong. It's not something to be proud of. It doesn't mean you are tough or a good businessperson, it means you've crossed a line that God set to help you. Why? Because you reap what you sow. If you go around doing all this unethical stuff to people, it's bad enough that other people are being affected, it will also come back to you. However, a seared conscience is something that is reversible. You can start by making a conscious effort to not do unethical things to others. 

 

July 8, 2003

Promiscuous Athletes

Recently, I read an article about a famous athlete that is known for being promiscuous. He goes to strip clubs, sleeps with groupies and fans in different cities that he has matches in. He is very casual about it all.

However, it is particularly sad that he has been met with a lot of misfortune in his life, that he doesn't realize stems from his promiscuous behavior. Bad things happen to good people, so we are not to assume, as the story of Job in the Bible teaches us, but there are cases where it is a direct consequence of promiscuous behavior. God does punish sexual sin. I know it's not a message you hear everyday, but it is true and quite scriptural.      

A lot of entertainers and athletes have problems with promiscuity, largely due to the lifestyle they are exposed to once they become famous. Some people wonder why celebrities have strange habits and desires. Well, it is because they've been exposed to more things than most people because of the number of people that pursue them for relationships. 

It stems from the different sexual partners they've had. The Bible indicates that sex is never that casual, as some would lead you to believe.   

God only intended sex to be between two married people. The Bible says "the two shall become one" (Genesis 2:24). God seeks to bond people through marriage and the sexual union between the two spouses.

When people change that order, becoming one with all these people and people they are not married to, of course something is going to go wrong and it will have an adverse effect on the person's life. You're taking all these people into yourself and God never intended that.

It creates all sorts of problems. Feelings of hopelessness, depression, bizarre sexual urges and behavior - it also creates loss and missed opportunities in a person's life. God chastises for that sin. God created sex, but any misuse of it will have a negative effect. 

A lot of people feel celebrities start taking drugs because someone offered it to them. In some cases it's true, but a lot of people take drugs to try to escape the pain they feel. Some are so tormented to the point they can't even sleep. A lot of it stems from sexual sin - from sinning against your body.

It's all the immorality they've been exposed to and participate in, more than most people, as more things are available to them. All of that affects your soul and that affects your well being. Lack of peace is a terrible thing. You will not have peace of mind when you are doing something God said you are not to.   

That's apart of the reason so many celebrities turn to drugs, immoral sex and other things to fill that void and quiet that nagging, awful feeling they feel in their soul, but none of those things work. They walk around like zombies, because they are on drugs and use it to function and get through the day. A person must feel really bad when they get to that point. Sadly, some are plagued with feelings of suicide when they can't quell those tormenting feelings. It's sad, but suicide is not the answer.    

Some, in seeking new thrills look to bizarre sexual behavior, sleeping with underage girls or other inappropriate behavior. There is one type of behavior for example, where the person strangles themself to the point of almost dying to achieve sexual gratification - many have miscalculated and died. That is not something to play with. Don't risk your life. 

However, some risk their lives in other ways. They sleep with groupies and fans - they risk contracting sexually transmitted diseases (there is a distinction between a groupie and a fan - groupies are usually opportunistic). People put too much faith in condoms and are too trusting of others who are promiscuous as well. Condoms do fail and can't protect you from several sexually transmitted diseases.  

Some of those habits will start as something simple and turn into an embarrassing, consuming obsession - after all, you weren't born that way, it's a habit you learned. The more you feed that desire, the worse it is going to get. It becomes like a compulsion the person seemingly can't control. 

When you sleep with different people, you are bonding with them. God created sex to bond a husband and wife, but if you are bonding with all these different people, it is damaging you. Their sexual habits and urges, normal or bizarre are imparted into your soul, along with other emotional problems. It's the only sin in the Bible that is referred to as sinning against your own body. 

Therefore, some of you need to pray and ask God to remove those problems from you and you have to make a conscious decision to change. I'm not condemning anyone, just encouraging people to get help and to get away from that lifestyle, as it has its consequences.  

Michael Irving - Michael got into trouble due to his past promiscuous behavior and drug abuse. I saw him on TD Jakes show about a year ago speaking of the problems he had and how God changed his life. His wife accompanied him to the show and He apologized to her and thanked her for staying with him.

I also saw an interview with Michael and Deon Sanders on a local TBN station and it was so candid and genuine. They didn't pretend. They spoke about being friends since the time they started playing for the Dallas Cowboys. They spoke about their past, the mistakes they made and how those mistakes affected their lives.

Deon spoke of how he became arrogant due to the money he was earning as a pro athlete and his family not telling him because he was supporting them. They probably meant him well, but just didn't know how to tell him.

That happens to a lot of celebrities. Some family members are a bit timid and don't know how to broach the subject, while others don't want to be financially cut off so they don't say anything. I couldn't watch someone I care about make those mistakes and not say anything.

A few weeks ago, one of my friends expressed how concerned he is about his cousin who is a pro football player (not Deon or Michael). He said he saw his cousin recently and what he witnessed alarmed him. He said he was stunned when he got to the hotel, as his cousin was having a party with a room full of people, particularly women, to be exact, he said "it was three rooms filled with women." I thought to myself, man, if he played football with that kind of enthusiasm, he'd do extremely well. I'm kidding - well, sort of. He has done well, though.

However, my friend's concerns were no joke. He told his cousin he needs to not let these women ruin his life. He has worked hard to get into the NFL and he didn't want to see him lose the great opportunities he has in his life.

He warned him to be careful and not jeopardize his career because of the women that chase after him. He told us how stunned he was at the number of girls chasing him and how eager they were to go out with his cousin or anyone associated with him in hopes of becoming famous themselves. I wasn't surprised, as a lot of women chase men in the music industry for that same reason.   

He said one of the girls that was there to see his cousin started singing at him because she thought he was a producer and could get her a record deal - never mind he's a contractor in the construction industry. The only hit he could give her is with a brick - I'm kidding, my friend wouldn't do that and that would be wrong. However, it's sad when women prostitute themselves like that for fame.

I can understand why some guys are so suspicious of women only wanting to date them because they are famous. Still, it is wrong to use women like that, regardless of them being willing. That type of behavior is self-destructive. 

How many athletes actually make it into the NFL and get the opportunity to play their favorite sport. But that's part of the problem. Once they get there, guys are taught that they are supposed to mess around as much as possible, especially when they are famous.

For years, Miami Heat basketball player AC Green has promoted abstinence until marriage. Some of his fellow athletes may have teased him about that, but I admire the stand he took. It's a good message. Last year he got married to a lady who shares his beliefs. Congratulations to them.    

Sadly you don't get as much press coverage when you speak of being responsible. The press only cares when they catch someone famous in a hotel room with someone they aren't supposed to be with or when an entertainer or athlete is accused of raping someone or beating someone. They only care when they get someone to do a tell all on their past sexual relationship with someone famous.   

The press loves a scandal. It sells papers and sends their ratings up. They love to disgrace people under the guise of reporting the news. They'll devote hours of coverage to that everyday instead of trying to talk to entertainers and their audience about being moral. 

They'd rather promote the hell raising entertainers and when they fall due to the behavior they once applauded and encouraged, they broadcast it all over the press and condemn them.

I wrote about that on this page on June 14th, 2003. Some celebrities are too trusting that people won't set them up, sell their stories and destroy their marriages and relationships. Fame is not going to stop someone from selling their story; it is an incentive for many, as they are paid for these interviews. 

No matter how much they tell you they love you, they will sell their story - and if someone sells their story, they don't really care about you. Anyone who would disgrace you in such a manner doesn't care about you. They won't think twice about exploiting you, yet some celebrities are still careless anyway.

If you are famous, you know there are people that would love to see you fall. You know the press is watching you, why give them a reason to disgrace you and destroy your family. Some people will not hesitate in setting you up, so why give them an opportunity to through unwise choices. However, to be fair, there are some people who are set up and it is out of their control, as they didn't do anything wrong and did not anticipate what the person was trying to do. 

 

July 9, 2003

Sports - Mental coaching

Playing certain sports can be tough physically and mentally. When problems arise, the answer is not necessarily a new coach, but a new training program. Some people change coaches and benefit from it, while others do not. 

In general, some coaches do need to change their way of thinking. If you don't believe your athletes can do well or get beyond a certain point and unwisely voice those negative opinions, it will affect your athlete. They can pick up on those cues. They can read the lack of confidence in your facial expressions. They may be struggling with doubts of their own, do not reinforce those doubts with your negative words and lead them to believe they won't do well or they can only do so well. 

Remember, morale is important. You'd think every coach knew that, but some don't understand it and say negative things that dampen their players morale. Yes, you want them to win, but berating them and telling them they suck isn't the way to do it. 

If you don't believe they can win, they won't believe they can win and will play accordingly. Even if they lose, you need to encourage them in the good things they accomplished during the game, instead of only addressing the parts of their game that need improvement. If all they are hearing about is the problems with their game, they will become discouraged and that usually produces low self-esteem and insecurity. Reinforce the good things they do as well. It makes a difference.  

Sports is not like music or acting where you can go on stage with little clothes on, get attention, sell records and become successful in that sense. To become an athlete in the league associated with your sport, you had to exhibit a certain level of talent or you would not have gotten there. That means you have a talent for what you do. Therefore, some of you need to shake off the negative things you've been told by others regarding your athletic abilities.

Change up your training program. When you practice the same routine almost everyday, you will stay in the same place. Your body will grow accustomed to it and it will hamper your progress. 

God made the human body quite amazing. It is a testament of His genius. The body is able to remember things and adjust to resistance. Therefore, if you give it the same or less resistance, that will equal less of a challenge and your performance will stay the same or decline - other factors such as aging will contribute to that later on. However, if you are young, that lack of a challenge will equate to your performance staying the same or declining. It's like your body saying…oh I'm used to this and yawning at it. 

Spend extra time practicing the areas of your game that need improvement - if you are a basketball player and you have trouble with free throws; devote extra time to practicing your free throws. If you are a tennis player and improving your backhand would help your game, devote time to practicing your backhand. Repetition will reinforce and improve. Once you become better, continue to challenge yourself. 

Many very successful athletes spend a lot of time practicing. There is no shame in that. Practicing is not just for amateurs. I've read quite a few bios and practice is a word that comes up often "they practiced" "and they practiced" "practice, practice, practice!" You read about how they practiced in their backyards, then how they practiced at training facilities. Practice is apart of your job when you are an athlete. Some don't see it that way, but it is. Practice is just as important as the game.     

Change the way you think - most games are won mentally, then physically. That's not just something as technical as the brain sending the body messages/signals of what you want done, it is also a spiritual matter as well. If you go out there feeling defeated, your body will take cues from your mind and your defeated attitude.

Nerves can defeat you as well. Being nervous, anxious or unable to think clearly due to feelings of anxiety or anger will hamper your performance. The body will take cues from that as well. After all, there are people who get nervous or become afraid and break out in hives as a result. That's fear and anxiety manifesting itself physically where you can actually see it.

If there is a problem, error or you lose a few points, do not adopt a defeated attitude about it. Look for a way to fix it and to get those points back. Don't allow yourself to experience that drop in your emotions where you feel bad because you made an error or lost a point and then become unraveled.

Yes, it can be difficult, but the second you start feeling that drop in your emotions, shake it off and think, I'm going to get that point back. Don't keep thinking about that error or lost point, look to the next point you can win. Don't begin to entertain negative thoughts. You're not going to win every point, but you can win the game.

Emotionally and mentally you have to figure out what works for you. As much as people may mean you well, they really can't do that for you. That's between you and God. Prayer does help a lot. Ask God to take away that discouragement and anger from you and to help you change your way of thinking for the better. You can also do your part in not indulging yourself in discouragement and anger by letting loose when you get upset or being too hard on yourself. Once again, yes, that can be difficult, but you can change that.

When those feelings of anger start to build up, recognize it and do not indulge it. Change your thought pattern. It can be difficult to calm down, but you can.

It is also wise to get to the root of the problem. What is causing that anger and discouragement? You'd be surprise what the root causes are sometimes. 

Sometimes it is stress, while other times it stems from things a person has been told, which can build up over time, then it just becomes a habit and a way of thinking. For example, it's not wise to provoke people to anger, as it will form a habit in their life and they will become easily agitated and exasperated.

You need to sit down and analyze what happens to you each time you feel that way and what it goes back to or is tied to in your life. Praying about those issues and asking God to help you recognize what the root cause is (it could be something from childhood) and asking Him to help you work through it is very effective. Be honest with God. He knows what you are thinking anyway. 

Another thing, football players try to get pumped up and angry before they go out on the field, as the objective of the game is to run with the ball to the other end of the field, while steamrolling other athletes on your way to that objective.  

However, in other sports that is not the objective and you need to be careful of what you listen to, watch and do before you go out there to play because that can affect you. If you play tennis or golf, you don't need to listen to music that will rile you up and incite you to anger before you get out on the court. Those are sports where you really have to use your brain and need your nerves to be steady.

While it's good to be humble, lack of confidence isn't helpful. There is a difference between humility and insecurity. Most people have problems with their emotions at some point in life, but there are ways to change that. 

In general, you don't want people ingratiating, as that is very insincere, but it is helpful to have family members, a coach or friend who encourage you, as it will build up your self-confidence. 

Oppositely, if there is someone constantly telling you that you are not good enough, that's going to mess with your head, unless you are very secure. I've seen people do that to others. Sometimes it is intentional and other times it is not. For example, sometimes people joke around, say facetious things that they don't really mean, but those kinds of jokes are not a good idea, because they can do damage to a person's self-esteem as well.  

As I've mentioned before, my dad was a professionally athlete. He played soccer professionally and is a very good tennis and cricket player. I asked him what the most difficult part of being an athlete was for him and he said training in the day and making sure he got enough rest at night. 

You would have thought he would have said winning or losing, but he obviously didn't take it that seriously to let that be the reason he played sports and he did excel at it. My point is remember to enjoy the sport. Yes, you want to win, but don't take it that seriously to the point that it becomes a source of anxiety, stress and depression. I don't write that to be patronizing, but sometimes we need to be reminded of little things like that.

Lastly, you are under no obligation to win anything for anyone. Don't put that pressure on yourself - that's more stress. Don't try to win the game for other people. Try to win the game for yourself.

 

July 12, 2003

Female Artist And A Journalist Poaching From This Site

Oh, I'm going to sound off today. There is a singer and her management company that have been poaching off this web site. These people are known for doing this and I guess it was only a matter of time before they got to this site.  

Why is it their singer's new web site that was recently launched has practically the same menu as mine - the color of the text, the color of the bar(s) and content? 

Here's a screen cap of that singers menu bar:

and here is my menu bar from this web site: 

HOME
NEWS
BIO
INFO
MUSIC
VIDEOS
DIARY
PHOTOS
INTERVIEWS
LYRICS
DISCOGRAPHY
FILMOGRAPHY
CONTESTS
EXTRAS
STORE
CLUB
MAILING LIST
INTERACT
SOUND OFF
LINKS
SITE INFO
CONTACT

 

Now they could blame that on the webmaster, as some webmasters poach off other sites (this week I read another article on another site about that and it's a serious problem on the net). However, the similarities and inappropriateness of it all have been made even more apparent, as that unscrupulous singer and her unscrupulous relative/co-worker have been quoting things I've written on here in their interviews as though they are saying it when they are not. Recently, I read two articles on line where they've done this in their interviews.  

There are other questionable items on that web site as well. For example, I've mentioned "mixing and mastering" my tracks on here. It states on that singer's web site that she had a part in "mixing and mastering." I wasn't aware that singers who do not mix and master albums had a part in that. I thought the engineer handled that in most cases, especially the mastering which requires some skill. 

Also, why does this singer now have the exact same haircut that I do, the same haircut I've had for several years, but hers courtesy of a weave? I was shocked when I saw pic of this singer, who now had a new haircut identical to mine with the same long bang, with the hair over/in the eyes, layered at the sides and long in the back? 

God gave you a brain, start using it and stop poaching off this web site. That's another thing, stop attributing your inappropriate conduct to God, saying He would want you to do things people have publicly questioned your integrity for doing, as it so clearly goes against the Bible. Stop hiding behind Him as your excuse when you do things He clearly says in the Bible are inappropriate. 

God gave everyone free will, the ability to do as we choose, but with Him judging our actions. If you want to go down the wrong path, that's your choice, however, if you want to do something inappropriate, when questioned about that behavior, at least be enough of a person to say you are the one that thinks it's okay - stop attributing that inappropriate behavior to God. That will mislead others by saying God approves, when He does not and that is worse.

 - A certain journalist keeps plagiarizing this page. There are 11 instances of plagiarism and copyright infringement in that journos work, which said journo, poached from this page. These infringements mysteriously all occurred shortly after I typed articles on this site containing the same info.  

You can go through this page and then go through that journos column and see where that journo poached items, article ideas and whole sentences from this site. These pages are copyrighted and updates are sent to the copyright office containing all the text I type on here. If said journo doesn't stop plagiarizing this page, said journos editor will be receiving a detailed outline of these infringements accompanied by a document known as a lawsuit from my attorney. After what happened in the Jayson Blair case, you would think some journos would be more careful, but some still can't resist the temptation even when it could get their paper sued and cost them their job.

 

July 15, 2003

Kobe Bryant Case

People have been talking about the Kobe Bryant case. What concerns me is that there are several variables that could make the story untrue, namely an accusation in a Newsweek article that stated several NBA players referred to his accuser as "well known as a basketball groupie." That statement affects her credibility. To convince people that an alleged groupie was raped is about as difficult as arresting someone for stealing one of those free magazines they have on display at stores with a take one sign on it.   

I agree that no means no, but there are other things about this story that have been questioned - like why was the desk clerk/concierge delivering room service and why media reports suggest neither were innocent as "employees saw Bryant and the woman flirting during his June 30 check-in." That's very disrespectful to his wife. 

Men and women have to be careful of certain situations. As a woman, you really don't want to be alone in a hotel room with a married man. If you are a famous married man, you certainly don't want to be alone in a hotel room with a woman who is not your wife. There's too much room for speculation.  

Another thing being questioned is why he was arrested without being charged. Also, why are the accuser's friends on television shows recounting the incident? That looks very questionable. If that happened to you, would you have your friends on national TV giving details such as "she said Kobe went the whole way." I'm not trying to be cruel and I'm not trying to defend him, but that doesn't look right.   

Rape is a serious accusation. It sounds like a humiliating, degrading, traumatizing experience. My sympathy goes out to anyone who has endured that. It is a cruel violation of a person's body and mind.  

I'm not the type of woman to automatically believe the woman. Why? While some women are raped, some are not and are scheming opportunists - and that goes for women of all colors. There are some in every race. Nor will I vouch for a celebrity just because they are a celebrity.

The sad part is, the public doesn't know the truth and will continue to speculate and if he is innocent, will his name be restored?...not likely.

What I find particularly disturbing is the racist views from black and white people that this case is bringing out into the open. Some, not all, black people are glad this happened and have said things along the lines of he deserves it for "messing with white women." I've heard and read where some black people have made those statements. Some, not all, white people believe he is guilty because he is black - I've read statements to that effect as well. Just like there are some black people who believe he is innocent because he is black. There is no logic in any of those theories. 

For black and white people to have those prejudices says things are not going to get better when people continue to look at others that way. 

What does color have to do with what happened. The bottom line is a woman has made a very serious accusation, a basketball player has been disgraced and his family is now in jeopardy. I hope others involved in the case won't let color be a factor in the decisions they make. 

I think interracial relationships are great. I think it is wrong to look at a person's color. You should look at who they are as a person. If you love someone, it shouldn't matter what color they are. 

There is one thing I've heard many minorities complain about regarding interracial dating. Black and Latin people who only date white people - never anyone from their own race or another minority. When a person exclusively dates outside of their race, it sends a bad message to the members of their race, especially when they are famous. It sends the message that they think something is wrong with their race, which is why they do not date anyone of their own race. It gives the appearance of trying to distance oneself from one's heritage.

People do pay attention to those things. One of my friends emailed me an article about a famous black person that never dates black women and when asked, a lot of times does not even want to acknowledge that he himself is black. It's been a topic of debate in the black community regarding him, where it has overshadowed his achievements. 

 

July 18, 2003

What Is Talent

Talent is a funny thing...not wearing much on stage is not a talent. What does that have to do with singing. The voice is not aided by less clothing or vulgarity. That's what quite a few singers are doing, especially female singers. The female singers have hit a new low. I can't remember a time in music where it was this vulgar. It seems like they are trying to outdo each other in who can wear the least amount of clothes and be the most shocking in behavior and speech.

They go out there with half their chest and or half their butt showing. Some singers play instruments, others play their butts. They go out there and turn their butts to the camera and that's the show. It's now become don't pay attention to song, just watch the artist. It's like those artists have forgotten about the music, which is supposed to be the reason they are on stage. That's not what singers do.

As I wrote recently, the two female artists who have done the best so far this year with sales, both kept their clothes on. The music drove sales, not lewd gear, on stage antics and vulgar music videos.

Artists who use gimmicks and sex to sell records struggle shortly after to get their credibility and self-respect back when they realize it is much more valuable.  

Growing up, I would hear people complain about artists objectifying and degrading women in their music videos and I didn't understand it, but now I do. Now the female artists are objectifying and degrading themselves in their own videos and singing things that really cheapen the songs. People don't respect that and the names these women are being called is shameful. When you degrade yourself on stage and in music videos, you can't complain when people don't take you seriously and don't respect you.  

What should concern people is the young girls at home watching certain artists and thinking they have to dress and behave like prostitutes to be liked. You can't deny that there has been a change in how teenage girls dress and carry themselves in the last few years. They walk down the street dressed like video extras. I'm only 26 and you lot already have me saying, when I was a teenager, girls didn't dress like that. 

After a certain singer's debut, Disney World reported that they noticed a change in attire of the young girls who visit the theme park in that they were more scantily clad, namely wearing tops that show their midriffs. They were talking about teenage girls ages 12 and up. She's not the only female artist who's had that influence and it's gotten worse with the new albums that have been released recently. 

That's not a respectable way to earn a living. God doesn't want anyone misleading people like that and profiting financially from their moral corruption.  

Most singers want to be known for their music. A singer should not be known for what they don't wear on stage and or the vulgarity of their stage show. That overshadows the music - well, in some cases, there really is no music to overshadow.   

One of the bad things about shock value is after a while people are so desensitized to the antics that they get bored and the performer is left struggling to come up with new gimmicks to get attention - gimmicks that are so desperate they either provoke yawns or disgust, none of which translate into record sales.   

Another thing, why is everyone trying to out yell each other when they sing? Out-yell to out-sell has never worked. Yes, it's great to hear a singer utilize their full range, but when it's done properly. When you look at singers with great range, they don't have to force it or yell. They are just naturally loud when the song calls for it, can they produce that kind of sound with very little effort and it's not out of place.   

Yelling and straining to reach notes outside of your range is not great singing. So many singers are desperate to prove how well they can sing that they resort to yelling. Yelling and screaming the loudest does not mean the best, as any singer can yell.

There are singers whose voices I like listening to that have 2 or 3 octaves, but I can appreciate their voices more than some, not all, singers who have more octaves based on how and what they sing. If you can carry a tune and I like your work, I really don't care how many octaves you don't have, I'll buy your album. For example, the singer I'm listening to right now, has three octaves and often sings in the same register, but I love his voice. It's got a great tone that I like listening to. I like his voice more than a lot of other singers who have more octaves than he does.  

The funny thing about the female singers who are out right now and are trying to outdo each other is… there's a singer who's been releasing albums for several years and is more talented than they are. She has 7 octaves and plays 2 instruments - yet she doesn't try to out yell or outdo anyone when she sings. Well, when you are that talented, you really don't have to prove that to anyone because people can tell. Going on stage improperly dressed and being vulgar can never get the kind of respect talent can.

 

July 22, 2003

Celia Cruz

- Singer Celia Cruz passed last Wednesday at her home in New Jersey. My condolences to her family. Growing up in Miami, you knew who she was. Even if you didn’t know her music, you knew who she was, as she was a staple here in the Hispanic community. In reading about her, you realize she had an impressive work ethic, as many Hispanics in Miami do. She recorded 80 albums during her career. What impressed me, though, is what was written about her recently in the Puerto Rico Herald:  

"Celia was the rare celebrity who didn't throw diva tantrums, didn't whine about the work and didn't trade on anything but her talent," and ''We would ask her to appear in concerts featuring a constellation of Latin stars,'' said Eduardo González Rubio, a longtime Cuban radio personality. "Everybody else would fight about the lineup, `Put me first, put me last.' But Celia always said, 'Put me wherever you want.' ''        

Many singers today aren't like that. That was rare indeed. In other words she was no diva. She didn't behave like a diva. She didn't hog the spotlight. She didn't try to outdo other singers. She didn't fight over who got the most promo or the more prominent billing. She didn't step on other singers. 

There's too much of that going on now in the music industry, especially among female artists due to fragile egos and them being overly ambitious. 

Competitiveness Between Female Singers

On July 12, 2003 I wrote about another singer and her team who have been poaching off this web site (scroll up to July 12th, 2003 article). Well, it looks like I wasn’t the only person to have that problem with that singer recently, as a few days after, a journo wrote something similar for a magazine.

The hair extensions have hit the fan, so to speak, as a well-known magazine accused the same singer I did, of stealing a very famous singer/actress' looks and style for her own projects. The TV show Inside Edition also ran a similar piece on them last Friday, which highlighted the similarities between the two.

It looked like riding the other singer's coattails and leeching off her fame. Ironically, it's not the first time that singer has been accused of doing that or as it was put in slang terms in another article "trying to steal someone else's shine again."

The article showed pics of the similarities, where the other singer wore one costume and hairstyle and where the other singer duplicated it after, in addition to hiring her choreographer, so they now have the same type of dance moves and her publicist as well. She's even resorted to repeating the same things in her interviews the other singer said prior to that. It's like the other singer has been trying to become her, but what she's really become is her impersonator. That's one of the bad things about impersonating others; it will always pale in comparison, as it is not the original and that is whom people will end up thinking of, not the imitator.

The singer that the show focused on, who was being ripped off by the other singer, has a stylist who is most likely in the $100,000 per year range with additional hairstyling fees of approximately $5,000 per month/$60,000 per year for the kind of work she does. She's paying all those fees to those people and all for it to get ripped of by that singer and her team. That's not right. Deliberately trying to steal the woman's show and her thunder with her own material.

That kind of ambition is ugly. However, I'm not surprised, as it's the same ugly, unwarranted ambition that singer and her team have used to propel and govern their careers since they entered the industry a few years ago and at the expense of other careers that got in their way. No one should ever want to be a star that badly that they are willing to destroy others careers and lives or leech off other more famous careers to accomplish that objective. That is not success by any standards.

Two other female artists have made similar complaints about them recently. One for stealing her sample and the other for moving her album up to the same date as hers to start a competition with her out of spite for something else (for which she publicly complained), as she knew that singer did not receive the huge promotional blitz or radio push she did and she could easily trounce her due to that.  

The first incident ended in them being publicly dissed by the first singer for stealing her sample after someone at their label heard her finished track containing it and the second one ended in she and her team unwittingly positioning her album in front of another female artist's sophomore release, who they obviously underestimated, as she ended up doing to her album what she did to the other singer's…she trounced it in the charts (hey, it happens, as there is often an album being released the following week that will replace the current number one). The ironic thing is had she left the album where it was and released it on the date it was originally scheduled for, it would have looked like she trounced everyone.    

Yet, that singer and her team often publicly wonder why people react to them the way they do and wrongly attribute it to jealousy due to their talent (at least they are humble), but that's not it (though there are a few well-known singers I do believe others are jealous of). That's not why in her case, as there are others out there who are more talented (yes, really). The next time they are tempted to publicly ask that question, they should look to their misdeeds regarding others for the answer. 

 

July 23, 2003

Singers Imitating Other Singers

I read an article this week about an artist who was criticized for changing her style of music and dress to be like another singer that made her debut this year. In the article she complained about the reaction from the public. I wasn't very familiar with her work, but I knew her name and that she had credibility and respect as a musician. 

She openly admitted she heard an album by a new artist this year, who is an 18 year old Canadian, liked it and wanted her next album to be like it - so much so she even went to that new artist's producers in an attempt to duplicate her sound.

However, that singer destroyed her credibility in doing that, as her audience and critics slammed her new album and rightfully so. Why steal that 18-year-old singers show? Let her do what she does and you stick to what you do. The whole thing destroys the diversity that should exist in music. All these duplicates make music very boring. Not to mention it takes audiences too much time to figure which of the duplicates it is when they hear and or see them at first.

The funny thing is had that 18 year old singer not been famous at the time the other singer noticed her work and decided to do her own odd version of it, that other singer would have probably claimed full credit for that reinvention in her own work, when it was the 18 year old's. 

When you change with every album and try to become another singer, you aren’t a musician; you're a chameleon…musicians are not supposed to be lizards.

I don't understand how any true musician can be content with or proud of trying to be another musician and that's what they are doing with these reinventions. Yes, people change, but not into other singers. 

It's a disturbing trend I've noticed recently. She's the fourth female singer to do that this year and in the process destroying her credibility. Well, one of the other four female singers who did that as well had no credibility to begin with, but it still cost her a lot. You'd think they'd learn their lesson. 

Speaking of that, on May 5th 2003, I wrote about a famous pop singer I read about who is trying to rap. Last month I read about another pop singer trying to reinvent herself as a rapper, but this time in England. Sincerely, I hope she doesn't do that. Rapping will not give her credibility, as it is not what she is known for. She is more suited to singing. I hope she doesn't go through with it. Rap audiences can be very harsh especially in situations like that.

 

July 26, 2003

Singers Imitating Other Singers

The well-known magazine article I mentioned on July 22, 2003 on this page, which was in reference to the singer who has been ripping off another singer's look and style and also the same one who poached off this site (which was also one of the singers I wrote about on June 28th, 2003 that was written about on a message board for this same thing) was in the July 28th, 2003 issue of US Weekly magazine. Someone told me about the article, but now I've actually seen the issue.

Label Falsifies Sales

Why do some, not all, record companies falsify record sales. As I've written on here before, the numbers get increasingly high and incredulous when they figure in alleged worldwide sales. Some companies get really creative with that.

I remember watching a television show last year where a label executive said a certain album sold 75 million copies (worldwide). At first, you'd think he said "seventy fine records" but he really said "75 million." I was sitting there thinking to myself, I know about 60 million copies of that album are sitting in a warehouse somewhere. It's already a bit much counting the number shipped, rather than sold, but are we now counting the number of albums pressed up.

Which record in history has sold 75 million copies (I'm not saying that it couldn't happen). The board game trivial pursuit sold 75 million copies in 20 years. What, did they give away this album free with trivial pursuit and the label is counting it as albums sold or something (I'm kidding). 

Music industry math…for example: 8,500,000 copies sold = 85,000,000 pressed up, which means you've pressed up 85x platinum - always remember to add a zero and change the pressed up part to sold worldwide. It's sort of like a weave, the label figures they paid for it, so it's real. And to my knowledge, no label has pressed up that many copies of a single release yet (album). There's no need to claim these incredulous numbers. I thought it so unnecessary, as the album was a big hit without the hype.

Group or Solo Artist

Isn't it weird when the best vocalist in a group does less singing on the records in favor of another member. It makes you wonder why the best vocalist in the group sometimes sings so few lines. There is a group in particular that I'm thinking of, where the most talented vocalist, didn't get to sing on the records. When they finally gave the person a few lines to sing I was stunned, as the person could sing and the groups records would have turned out much better had that individual gotten the chance to.

This happens in several groups. I don't agree with that approach, as the word "group" indicates more than one, not solo. It's basic common sense. As a writer/producer, if you are hired to produce a record, you want the best sound you can get, therefore your first instinct is usually to look for the member with the best voice - not the most photogenic or the one with controlling interest - well, provided you are allowed to do so by the label and management. More execs should care, as they are sacrificing the record and credibility in doing so.

The Kobe Bryant Case

Not surprisingly, people are still talking about the Kobe Bryant case. It's sad that it happened. I'm not going to condemn him, because with God there is forgiveness.

Adultery is the root of all of this trouble. It's something I've written about on here several times and in reference to the entertainment and sports industries as well. That's one of the bad things about adultery and deliberate bad choices in general - the consequences that are a product of them.

In the Bible, after David committed adultery and the consequences began to manifest, he wished he had made better choices and not committed adultery. God did forgive him, but that sin cost him so much, that he regretted it. 

Adultery never goes unpunished with God. It is wise not to commit that sin or to stop committing that sin if you currently are. It is never worth it when all the consequences manifest.

There's a well known poem and song about situations like that and it is quite true:

"Sin Will Take You"

Sin will take you farther than you want to go
Cost you more than you want to pay
And keep you longer than you want to stay

Speaking of more than you want to pay, I read a few days ago that Kobe recently bought his wife a 4 million dollar ring. I can't help but think, though, that it's better to honor the first ring, that way there is no need to get a second one.  

 

July 29, 2003

Record Sales?

Three days ago, on Saturday, July 26, 2003 I wrote about an executive, who last year said an album of his sold 75 million copies, which seemed a bit high to me, as I wasn’t aware of any record selling than many copies. Today, a New York paper wrote about him exaggerating his salary at 50 million, which he denied. 

The Kobe Bryant Case

Yea, I'm gonna write about Kobe again (hey, before this, my only reference to him was on the diary page when I was joking about Los Angeles sports teams, so I'm allowed to write about him now (ok I couldn't think of another reason to write about it again).

My is not so much the two people that are involved, but the fact that anyone can make a serious accusation and turn someone's life upside down. Someone is being prosecuted with the intent of sending him to jail for 4 years to life, based on someone's word. Many have said if it was consensual, the evidence they've discussed could still be there. So it's really her word against his. Therefore, they really need to take into account her credibility since someone's freedom is at stake. I hope they thoroughly look at all the evidence, as well as the credibility of the accuser and witnesses.

The articles I've been reading in reputable publications go against the victim's credibility and that's not good. And I still can't get past that Newsweek article last week, which stated many basketball players said she is "well known as a basketball groupie." Why are they saying that about her? 

If you work in the entertainment industry you know how badly groupies behave, so that's not exactly a compliment. They are shameless and do all sorts of things to get near celebrities. Some become disgruntled when they don't get their way. They have been the downfall of many people. They sleep with famous men; destroy marriages and families, all in an attempt of living vicariously through someone as their opportunity at fame. No self-respecting person would do that and it means nothing to these guys they sleep with. 

As I wrote a few months ago, women pursue celebrities, sleep with them in hopes the person will make them their girlfriend, but it doesn't happen. These guys don't date groupies, nor do they respect them. They only sleep with them, and to hear some of them tell it, kick them out of the room afterwards. That should not be something that anyone aspires to. Some groupies are jaded and used to that bad treatment, but some aren't and don't take it very well. There are women bragging about famous men they've slept with, yet if a person mentions their name to the guy they'll have no clue as to who it is. 

There are famous men who have contracted sexual transmitted diseases from groupies and some unknowingly passing on those sexual transmitted diseases to their wives.  

What's even stranger is that there are famous groupies as well. I'm referring to women who are singers or actresses with established careers in the industry, but behave like groupies in their pursuit of famous men. No, I don't mean a celebrity who likes another celebrity. I mean the ones bent on chasing different celebrities, constantly pursuing them. 

Famous groupies do have more success than non famous groupies simply due to the fact that they are famous - and some, not all, famous men will date them just because they are famous, but aren't being genuine when they do so. They do it for the attention it will get them in the press. 

To be fair, sometimes celebrities really do like each other. Still, there are situations where one celebrity really will like another one, but the other person seeks to use them to increase their fame or for what they can get from them financially. It's really sad when a career becomes so orchestrated, that even dating is a photo-op or form of promotion.

   

 

 


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