18. April 2014

0 Comments

Fired Black Hotel Worker in Irvine Claims Racial Discrimination

Activists and clergy members from numerous organizations gathered outside Irvine Embassy Suites earlier this month to support former employee Aaron Westly who claims management fired him after he complained to no avail about a coworker calling him an “animal” and “nigger.” The story of racial harassment went unreported save for the Tri-County Bulletin, an African-American newspaper serving the Inland Empire, Long Beach and Orange County.

Read more on my latest OC Weekly Navel Gazing Blog post:

http://blogs.ocweekly.com/navelgazing/2014/04/black_activists_and_clergy_mem.php

Continue reading...

17. April 2014

0 Comments

[Spare Notes] Rapper Cecy B is Putting in ‘Werk!’


{It’s Cecy B’s world! / photo cred: Francis Bertrand}

We don’t see Chicana femcees like Cecy B representing OC all too often. We’d have a lot more people paying attention to us if we did. With her endless swag, speedy flow and devastating sexy appeal, it’s a wonder this former San Juan Capistrano resident wasn’t discovered a whole lot earlier. But thanks to new management and a big break opportunity from the legendary radio personalities/producers the Baka Boyz, her latest trap happy single, “All I Do is Werk,” is working its way onto FM airwaves from coast to coast.

Read more on my latest OC Weekly Heard Mentality Spare Notes post:

http://blogs.ocweekly.com/heardmentality/2014/04/cecy_b_baka_boyz_spare_notes.php

Continue reading...

17. April 2014

0 Comments

Long Beach Woman Faces Deportation Despite Trust Act

A clothing store employee in Long Beach called the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department (LASD) on Kareli Barrera last Monday. They arrested the woman on suspicion of shoplifting. Nervously, she gave deputies a false name as she’s an undocumented immigrant. Later that night, they booked and jailed Barrera for the misdemeanor offenses. When she went before a judge, she pleaded no contest to petty theft, but instead of being released, the mother of an American citizen remained detained at Lakewood Sheriff’s Station until being transferred to Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) early Monday morning. The move angered activists, stating she should’ve been protected by California’s TRUST Act.

Read more on my latest OC Weekly Navel Gazing Blog post:

http://blogs.ocweekly.com/navelgazing/2014/04/kareli_barrera.php

Continue reading...

16. April 2014

0 Comments

Twenty Years Later: ‘Illmatic’ is Still the Illest!

When Illmatic dropped on April 19, 1994, the debut album from Nas wasn’t an immediate commercial success. Two decades later, though, it claims a staying power unrivaled by any other in hip-hop history. On “N.Y. State of Mind,” the Joe Chambers sampled bass line off “Mind Rain” creeps up on the gutter boom-bap mastery crafted by DJ Premier. Meanwhile, the Columbia Records rapper commands his gritty tales as the exalted ghetto griot he is. The song sets the tone for the classic album and is as head-nodding today as it was then. It stands as no surprise a celebratory retrospective edition of Illmatic hit stores Tuesday with remixes and previously unreleased material. The rapper performed cuts from his 20-year-old opus at the Kennedy Center backed by the National Symphony Orchestra. Taking a page from Rock the Bells, Nas performs the album in its entirety this weekend at Coachella.

“It’s almost like a heat check for hip-hop, especially when looking back at an album like Illmatic and an artist like Nas,” says UC Irvine professor Sohail Daulatzai. “At the time that it was out, it represented almost a kind of authenticity or purity that hadn’t existed in hip-hop before it.”

Read the rest of the OC Weekly music feature out on newsstands Thursday. If outside the distribution area, click the link below:

http://www.ocweekly.com/2014-04-17/music/nas-illmatic-sohail-daulatzai/

Continue reading...

16. April 2014

0 Comments

The Social Justice Summit Returns to Cal State Fullerton!

Finally, the Social Justice Summit has come back to Cal State Fullerton! Okay, so the all-day activist event only had a one-year hiatus, but in this reactionary county of ours, that can seem like an eternity. The summit returns for its 10th anniversary with its familiar slew of workshops, cool t-shirts, social justice swag bags and vegan luncheon sure to draw hundreds this Saturday. The lineup of keynote speakers is superb with civil rights icon Reverend James Lawson, Cal State Fullerton’s own Dr. Berenecea Johnson Eanes and undocumented activist extraordinaire Abraham Medina all on deck.

Read more on my latest OC Weekly Navel Gazing Blog post:

http://blogs.ocweekly.com/navelgazing/2014/04/social_justice_summit_cal_state_fullerton.php

Continue reading...