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Noted Producer Brennan Williams Reimagines Stevie Wonder’s Classic, ‘Black Man’ for Today’s Social Justice Crusade

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*A creative new Afrobeat version of the Stevie Wonder track “Black Man,” remixed by Will Coloan, also known as Brennan Williams, producer and founder of Coloan Records, is now available for streaming. The inventive reimagining of this important history lesson can be accessed on Spotify, SoundCloud, and YouTube.

The original “Black Man” appears on Stevie Wonder’s seminal 1976 double album milestone Songs In The Key of Life and recounts all of the cultural, historical, and scientific contributions made to American society and the world by men of all colors. The original recording – at more than eight and a half minutes long – lists such achievements as the first man to die in the American Revolution, the invention of incandescent light, the innovation of open-heart surgery, and much more, with the vital message “This world was made for all men.”

Like most music fans, Williams counts Stevie Wonder’s genius as a major inspiration both in and out of the studio. “As an avid admirer and fan of Stevie Wonder’s music, I count ‘Black Man’ as one of my favorite tracks on Songs in the Key of Life,” Williams explains.

He adds that now is the right time to remind listeners that our society has been woven from the threads of many races and that social justice is achievable. “This album has been a fixture in my record collection, so it was only fitting to pay homage to the song during a time of civil unrest, social consciousness, and the global pandemic,” he adds. “Overall, I want the remix to serve as a beacon of light, empowerment, and a celebration to all black men and mothers of black boys across the globe.”

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Brennan Williams (Photo Courtesy of Coloan Records)

Williams says he also wanted to honor Wonder’s powerful message of positivity and uplift while injecting a danceable, drum-heavy contemporary beat that will excite fans of Afrobeat, dubstep, and world music. “With the Afrobeat influence, I was inspired by Nigerian music pioneer Fela Kuti’s politically driven album Zombie, which was released a year after Songs in the Key of Life,” says Williams, who uses the handle Will Coloan in the studio.

Founded by Brennan Williams in 2008, Coloan Records creates theme mixes that combine original and remixed tracks to deliver eclectic and complex music programming. With unparalleled expertise in sensory branding and cultural programming, Coloan Records delivers unique viewing and listening experiences that captivate and move audiences across the globe.

Coloan Records has created musical experiences for such clients as The Recording Academy, Harvard University, Toyota, McDonald’s, Black Portraiture Conferences (presented in New York, Italy, and South Africa), Misty Copeland’s Dance Tribute to Wynton Marsalis, and the African American Museum of Philadelphia’s 40th Anniversary Gala honoring media trailblazers Cathy Hughes and Alfred Liggins. In June 2020, Williams created specially curated playlists for the relaunch of Global Communicator magazine.

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Sports

Halloween Fight Night: Leo Santa Cruz Battles Gervonta ‘Tank’ Davis in Texas

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*If you can’t trick or treat on Halloween night, you can catch a treat of a boxing match featuring two highly skilled world champions fighting for both the WBA super featherweight and lightweight championships.

Leo Santa Cruz (37-1-1, 19 knockouts) is set to headline his first pay-per-view event in his 40th professional bout.

Santa Cruz is a high-energy fighter known for his high volume of punches. His fan-friendly style has helped him land several high-profile televised fights. ‘El Terremoto’ is trying to win a title in his fifth different weight class.

Santa Cruz last fought nearly a year ago, when he defeated Miguel Flores by unanimous decision on Nov. 23. Gervonta Davis, Santa Cruz’s next opponent, is 23-0-0 with 22 knockouts. Expect 4th of July-like fireworks on Halloween night at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas.

During a recent conversation, Santa Cruz opened up about his fight with Davis, how his father’s health struggles motivate him and much more.

Percy Crawford interviewed Leo Santa Cruz for Zenger News.

Santa Cruz is a high energy fighter known for his high volume of punches (Photo courtesy of Mayweather Promotions)

Percy Crawford interviewed Leo Santa Cruz for Zenger News (Photo courtesy of Percy Crawford)

Zenger: How are you doing, Leo?

Leo Santa Cruz: I feel good. I just got done training, so I feel great. How are you?

Zenger: I’m great. Thanks for asking. I know you have a tight schedule, so I’ll keep it short. When you look at footage of Gervonta Davis, what are your takeaways?

Santa Cruz: He’s a great fighter, great talent, great skills, great puncher, great power. He has everything that a fighter can ask for. The only thing is maybe his stamina, but he’s been training hard for this fight, and it shows. Hopefully, he’s in great condition. I don’t take anything away from him. He’s a great fighter.

Zenger: You seem to live a very comfortable life right now. At 32 years old, what keeps you motivated to continue to fight at such a high level?

Santa Cruz: What keeps me motivated is my family. We grew up really poor. We struggled a lot, and I don’t want to go back to that. I continue to train hard in the gym, make great fights and keep my family straight for them to live and create a good future.

Zenger: We just watched Vasiliy Lomachenko, a 32-year old guy, move up in weight and lose to a 23-year old fighter who was bigger than he was. You are 32, and Gervonta is 25. You’re moving up, as did Lomachenko. How do you prevent having the same fate as the perception of the bigger and younger fighter having the advantage?

Santa Cruz: Yeah (laughing). I think the difference is I have a heart. I have that Aztec Warrior Mexican heart. I’m going to go out there no matter what. I’m not going to be scared to throw punches. No matter if he is the bigger guy, I’m going to go out there and throw punches and be on top of him. We don’t back down from nobody. We are going to be there with him with that Aztec spirit.

“I’m going to go out there no matter what. I’m not going to be scared to throw punches,” said Santa Cruz. (Photo courtesy of Mayweather Promotions)

Zenger: This fight will take place on Halloween night, which is the last day of October, which marks the last day of essentially ‘Cancer Awareness Month.’ Your father’s health issues and battle with cancer are well-documented. Are you using them as motivation to fuel you for this fight, or do you feel it’s best to leave those emotions out of it because that can be a dangerous approach?

Santa Cruz: I don’t have to fight emotional. My dad is great motivation for me because he has struggled going through everything he’s going through. What I’m going through in the gym, training hard and everything, is nothing compared to what he’s going through and what he’s been through. So, when I feel myself feeling down or a little bit tired, I think about my dad. I do this for him. I know that if I get this win, he is going to be very happy, and it will be extra motivation for him to continue fighting against cancer, and that’s what I want. But like I say, this is boxing, and you never know. Anything can happen out there. I just want for hopefully both of us to come out healthy from the fight. And I want my dad to not worry about me if anything goes wrong. I want to motivate him and make him proud.

Zenger: Most observers are viewing this fight as a volume-versus-power fight: Your volume against Davis’ power. Do you agree with that, or do you see this fight as being more than just that?

Santa Cruz: I think it’s a little bit more. I’m not only just volume. I can box. If I throw my volume, he will catch me. I can get caught with something, and he could catch me with a good power punch. I don’t want to go out there and just throw a lot of punches. I just have to go out there and be smart, pick my punches and fight a smart fight. But once we’re in there, we know we have to fight him; and whatever is working, that’s what we’re going to do.

Zenger: Obviously, Floyd Mayweather can’t fight for Gervonta, but his presence in this camp has been instrumental — or it appears to have been instrumental in how Gervonta has trained. Do you think Gervonta could possibly get caught up in trying to impress Floyd too much and that could lead to opportunities for you?

Santa Cruz last fought nearly a year ago, when he defeated Miguel Flores by unanimous decision on Nov. 23rd. (Photo courtesy of Mayweather Promotions)

Santa Cruz: Yeah, hopefully he does make mistakes because of that. When you have someone like Floyd Mayweather around you … if I had Floyd Mayweather in my corner, I would be trying to impress him so much that maybe I would get too carried away and do something wrong. Or get too frustrated trying to do what he’s telling me, and I can’t do it. So, it’s a little bit of both. It can be extra motivation, and it can be a distraction. We’re going to see fight day how it plays out.

Zenger: You’re adding weight and muscle to your frame. Physically, how do you feel?

Santa Cruz: Physically, I feel great. I feel strong. I look strong. People are telling me I look really big, and I’ve been looking strong in the sparring and on the mitts and everything. I like to hear that because I’ve been working hard and doing everything that I have to do in the gym to go out there and give a great fight. We are happy with the results right now.

Zenger: You always give us your best. I appreciate the time. Good luck on fight night, and I hope both you and Gervonta walk away healthy.

Santa Cruz: Thank you, man. I appreciate it and have a great day.

(Edited by Stan Chrapowicki and Allison Elyse Gualtieri)



The post Halloween Fight Night: Leo Santa Cruz Battles Gervonta ‘Tank’ Davis in Texas appeared first on Zenger News.

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Entertainment

Pepa Writes About Being the Reason Left Eye Torched Andre Rison’s Mansion

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*Lisa “Left Eye” Lopes from the four-time Grammy-winning singing group “TLC” has been dead 18 years, but memories of her talents linger on.

Yet, if there’s one thing that stands out more than her brilliant singing career, it is the incident on June 9, 1994, when she set fire to NFL star Andre Rison’s mansion in Atlanta, burning it to the ground.  At the time, the two were girlfriend and boyfriend.

While Left Eye mentioned the fire numerous times during interviews through the years, another piece of the puzzle was made public when Pepa, of the Grammy-winning hip hop duo, “Salt-N-Pepa,” revealed some interesting things about the fire, Left Eye, and Rison, in her 2008 autobiography, “Let’s Talk About Pep.”

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Why did left eye burn down

Pepa, whose real name is Sandy Denton, wrote:

“It just seemed that all of my problems revolved around men – even when it wasn’t my fault. Even when I wasn’t directly involved. One example of this was in 1994. I ended up in one of those National Enquirer type of magazines under a headline: “Is Pepa a Home Wrecker?” Remember the night Lisa (Left Eye) Lopes burned down the house of Andre Rison (former Atlanta Falcons wide receiver)? Well, I was sort of in the middle of that.

“Andre and I never messed around. I’m innocent of that crime. I am so innocent. But I did know him and we were really cool. Salt-N-Pepa used to do a lot of NFL spots for Monday Night Football. And we would do some NFL parties. I met Andre at one of those parties and we hit it off. We went bowling and were bugging out and laughing. I would bump into him from time to time at different clubs. And that was it.

“He told me later how everything went down. Apparently, he had been talking about me to her. Telling her how cool I was. Brothers, you can’t do that. Your girl will immediately be suspicious. Now, maybe he did like me like that, but again, we never went there. One night, he and Lisa are watching TV and my video comes on, and he gets all excited and says something like “Pep, that’s my girl!”

 

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Found my peace in a place of hurt. #letstalkaboutpep @amazon #book

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Pepa said the night of the fire, “Salt-N-Pepa” was in concert in Atlanta and got Left Eye and Rison backstage passes.  Somehow, Left Eye assumed that Pepa and Rison had been together.  As result, Left Eye lit up Rison’s mansion, burning it to the ground.

Wow. Who knew.

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Gospel

WE REMEMBER: Gospel Singer/Bishop Rance Allen Dies At 71

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Rance Allen – Photo: WTVG

As of this posting we don’t have a lot of details, but we can inform you that gospel singing legend Bishop Rance Allen died Saturday morning at the age of 71, according to his family.

As of this posting the cause of Bishop Allen’s death has not been revealed.

Bishop Allen was the pastor of New Bethel Church of God in Toledo, Ohio. Among other things, he previously performed for President Barack Obama and was nominated for five Grammy Awards.

Here is more about Rance Allen via the RanceAllenGroup website:

Bishop Rance Allen was born in 1948 in Monroe, Michigan, one of 12 children. At the age of five he began his preaching ministry and by age nine was preaching throughout Michigan, Ohio and Pennsylvania. He was licensed to preach at age 12 and has since carried the Word of the Lord throughout the United States and abroad. In 1978 he was ordained an Elder by the late Bishop John Seth Bailey and subsequently served 6-1/2 years as Associate Pastor of Holiness Temple Church of God In Christ (COGIC) in Monroe, MI.

In 1985 the late Bishop Gilbert Patterson founded New Bethel Church in Toledo, OH and installed Bishop Allen there as Pastor where he currently serves today. He served many years on the board of the Neighborhood Improvement Foundation of Toledo, Inc., a community organization whose mission was dedicated to improving inner-city environments. In recognition of his dedicated years in ministry the Urban Bible Institute of Detroit bestowed upon him an Honorary Doctorate of Divinity in 1995. In September, 2011 by God�s amazing grace Bishop Allen was elevated to the office of Jurisdictional Prelate of Michigan Northwestern Harvest in Detroit, succeeding the late Bishop Alfred Knight, Jr. and was consecrated on November 7, 2011 during the 104th Holy Convocation in St. Louis, Missouri. He has also been blessed with the awesome and humbling opportunity to preach the main message to thousands during the 90th, 96th and 105th International COGIC Holy Convocations.

Bishop Allen has been married to Evangelist Ellen Marie Groves since December, 1970. The calling on her life has been an enormous blessing to Bishop Allen as she has helped him take his ministries to a greater level in God. While there are no natural children born to this union they share their love and support to many God-children.

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Twitter reaction to the passing of Rance Allen:

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TV Calendar: Coming to Small Screens

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