*The coronavirus has affected many aspects of everyday life, which has prohibited many families, friends and loved ones from gathering to celebrate the millions of graduates across the country. Singer, dancer and entrepreneur Teyana Taylor released a new video entitled “Made It,” which celebrates the class of 2020.
Teyana Taylor joins MSNBC’s Ari Melber to discuss her motivation behind releasing the video. Taylor recounts not having a high school graduation, telling Melber “I didn’t get a chance to graduate” as she “was homeschooled,” adding “I knew how it felt to not feel celebrated.” Taylor’s daughter, Junie interrupts the interview mid-way through, making her debut on MSNBC.
THE ALBUM is the long-awaited successor to K.T.S.E. (June 2018), Teyana’s second album, one of the five G.O.O.D. Music/Def Jam albums produced by Kanye West during his 2018 sojourn in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. K.T.S.E. (acronym for Keep That Same Energy) set off an 18-month chain reaction for Teyana, starting with its summertime Top 10 R&B smash “Gonna Love Me.”
She performed “Gonna Love Me” (in a medley with “Rose In Harlem,” another K.T.S.E. track) on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon.
Hip-hop audiences embraced the “Gonna Love Me” remix featuring Wu-Tang Clan’s Ghostface Killah, Method Man and Raekwon, whose video was directed by Teyana.
About TEYANA TAYLOR:
Being a jack of trades has allowed Teyana Taylor to become a master of all. From her smoky melodic vocals to her dynamic dance moves, the entertainer dips in dives between her talents that also include producing, songwriting, acting, directing and everything in between. When it comes to describing herself, the Harlem native can only think of one word: Everything.
“I literally can do everything. I never look at anything as being impossible,” she explains. “I exhaust all options to make what happen when I need to make happen.” Her mantra made her an early favorite to artists like Pharrell, who she signed her first deal with, and later choreographed videos for artists like Beyoncé and Jay-Z. In 2014, Teyana’s love for the arts and R&B earned her the title of the first woman signed to Kanye West’s G.O.O.D. Music imprint.
Between R&B’s identity crisis in the 2010s, Teyana dropped her debut album VII, with tracks like “Maybe” (featuring Yo Gotti and Pusha T) and the sultry “Just Different” shaping her musical persona. The critically acclaimed album debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart in 2014, cementing her position in today’s modern R&B field. “I fought for that raw, hood necessary R&B and now I feel like it’s better than ever,” she says.
After spicing up the R&B charts, Teyana was blessed with the arrival of her daughter Junie with husband and NBA star Iman Shumpert in 2015.
“I do all of this for my baby. She’s who I do it for,” she says about Iman “Junie” Tayla Shumpert Jr., her main source of inspiration. “I always show her how to be a leader and a businesswoman. I want her to believe that she can be anything she wants to be and it not be a shocker that she’s a female doing it all.”
Soon after, Teyana went on to star in the internet-breaking video for Kanye West’s “Fade,” and scored her first MTV Moonman for “Best Choreography” at the 2017 MTV Video Music Awards.
Women with A Message – UMe’s Urban Legends Focus on Women’s Empowerment / LISTEN
Los Angeles – With the goal of fostering a community and the creativity it curates, UMe’s Urban Legends division will launch “Women With A Message,” a campaign highlighting grassroots activism, leadership innovation and self-determination from women who have redefined industry, sports and political activism.
The campaign will feature conversations amongst influential women who are crafting and delivering the global message of equality in real time. Rooted in the importance of representation and inspiration, the campaign’s music and editorial (video and written) content is designed to motivate both women and men to help spread the message of equality and respect. Available, HERE.
“Through their stories and voices, we hope to inspire more women to empower themselves and to participate in the upcoming elections. Inspiring more women to exercise their right to vote is about emphasizing the fact that we are all empowered to make choices about this country, in part through engagement in the process of choosing our leaders,” comments Katina Bynum, EVP, East Coast Labels, Urban, UMe.
“From board rooms to conference rooms to classrooms and beyond, heroic women have used their voices both to question and encourage others, and Motown is proud to present pioneers who paved the way in all aspects of culture,” adds President of Motown Records & EVP Capitol Music Group, Ethiopia Habtemariam.
Urban Legends and its editorial partner uDiscoverMusic invited community leaders, athletes and music executives to discuss how music and songs inspire, motivate and play a role in their lives.
Artist features include: Erykah Badu; Kelis; Janet Jackson; Mary J. Blige; Queen Latifah; Salt-N-Pepa; Zhane; and Mariah Carey, whose new memoir, The Meaning of Mariah Carey, is available now. Additional features showcase past trailblazers, including Nina Simone, Billie Holiday and Marlena Shaw.
Music industry professionals tell their stories from adversity to accomplishments and how they are enacting change: Ethiopia Habtemariam, President of Motown Records and EVP Capitol Music Group; LaTrice Burnette, EVP and GM, Island Records; Sujata Murthy, SVP Media & Artist Relations, UMe; Anastasia Wright, VP Rhythm Nation.
Urban Legends will introduce athletes’ stories as a way of amplifying the pursuit of equality. And of course, a look at the many ways that music motivates is sure to be part of the discussion with professional athletes, including Tamera “Ty” Young, star forward with WNBA’s Las Vegas Aces; Essence Carson, guard/forward for WNBA’s Connecticut Suns and Senior Manager of Label Relations and Production for Motown, Caroline and Priority; Taylor Townsend, tennis professional; and Lia Neal, champion swimmer and two-time Olympic medalist.
Activists will round out the “Women With A Message” campaign wtih Ciara Taylor, a founding member of the Dream Defenders community organizers, and a conversation with Alicia Garza, Creator of Black Futures Lab / Co-founder Black Lives Matter (BLM) and Katina Bynum, EVP, East Coast Labels, Urban, UMe.
About Urban Legends
Urban Legends is the UMG label imprint and cross-platform initiative devoted to the curation and celebration of over three decades of urban catalog music and culture. Urban Legends celebrates the revolutionary and defining recordings primarily of the 1980s, 1990s and 2000s. At its core, Urban Legends serves as both an editorial content site and e-commerce platform, delivering daily news, editorial features and franchises, and video updates on hip-hop and R&B artists within the UMG ecosystem. Urban Legends is a division of UMe.
Shonda Rhimes Says Clash Over Disneyland Ticket Lead to ABC Exit: ‘I Felt Like I Was Dying’
*Shonda Rhimes has detailed her decision to leave ABC and the straw that broke the camel’s back was a request for a Disneyland pass.
For 15 years, Rhymes created TV magic (and made history) at the network, with shows like “Grey’s Anatomy,” “Scandal,” and “How to Get Away with Murder.” She reportedly make more than $2 billion for Disney, but had a constant battle with ABC, which is owned by the studio. The writer producer tells The Hollywood Reporter that her creativity was limited at the network
“I felt like I was dying,” she said of her work producing nearly 70 hours of annual television. “Like I’d been pushing the same ball up the same hill in the exact same way for a really long time.”
The final nail in the coffin was hammered in 2017, over a pass to Disneyland.
Here’s more from Us Weekly:
As part of her contract, the showrunner had an all-inclusive pass and had negotiated a second one for her nanny. However, her pass was not interchangeable so when her sister needed one to take Rhimes’ daughter to the park, she had to go back and forth with the network and was told, “We never do this” multiple times.
The park eventually issued her an extra pass — which would have cost $154 — but it didn’t work when her family arrived at the park. Rhimes then called a “high-ranking executive,” who allegedly asked her, “Don’t you have enough?”
With that, she called her lawyer and asked to exit ABC to go to Netflix. Rhimes later inked a deal with the streaming giant worth $150 million.
In August, she announced her new deal, saying, “Shondaland’s move to Netflix is the result of a shared plan [Netflix CEO] Ted Sarandos and I built based on my vision for myself as a storyteller and for the evolution of my company.”
Her statement continued, “Ted provides a clear, fearless space for creators at Netflix. He understood what I was looking for—the opportunity to build a vibrant new storytelling home for writers with the unique creative freedom and instantaneous global reach provided by Netflix’s singular sense of innovation.”
Shonda’s first two projects with Netflix include a documentary about Hollywood icon Debbie Allen (releasing Nov. 27) and the period drama “Bridgerton” (releasing Dec. 25).
Quibi is No Mo’! – $2Billion Streaming Service Shutting Down After Six Months
*(Via UrbanHolywood411.com) – Quibi, the shortform mobile-focused streaming service, is going bust just six months after it launched.
“It is with an incredibly heavy heart that today we are announcing that we are winding down the business and looking to sell its content and technology assets,” Katzenberg and Whitman wrote in their open letter to employees, investors, and partners.
Quibi, short for quick bites, launched in April at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. The streamer offered a free trial, with subscriptions costing $4.99 with ads or $7.99 without ads.
The platform was filled more than 100 original programs, including #FreeRayshawn [shown above]. The drama starring Laurence Fishburne, Stephan James and Jasmine Cephas just won two Emmy Awards.
This article continues at UrbanHollywood411.com.
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