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Arious Entertainment Group E-Newsletter 5/14/2010- Beautiful Entertainer and Activist | Flashpoint | De Happenings | More

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Dearest On-Line Family and Friends:

Greetings to all of you!  Well, the week started of a bit sad by the loss of another one of our icons.  However, on a personal level it was pretty cool and somewhat amazing, due to quietly observing my birth date.  As I sit in front of this computer for the few moments I have free; I am pondering over these many wonderful birthdays and years.  My mind however' has drifted towards my goals, and I can't help but mention: another year has passed and I have yet to accomplish some of my ultimate goalsLOL...Yup, this week I did not board a plane that's heading to Egypt, in order for me to explore the captivating and mysterious great Pyramids...LOL, what a bomber huh?  Instead, I was consumed by my daily grind and is now left with very little time to vibe with you.   Honestly though, in my forever quest to expand my knowledge in various areas, I have been undertaking some extensive training.  Therefore, this week was filled with sessions after sessions of training in one area or another.  Of course, this has just about drained me and my brain...LOL; and has unfortunately cut into my time to completing the things I love, such as vibing with you regarding all the important issues that has transpired during this exciting week.  Physically, I know I will survive; after all I am a fighter and pretty headstrong...right?).  I know if this keeps up I will find a way to do both, because I don't know how to give up on anything  (hence my sign, which Todd and the folks that really know me can attest to.)

So I ask you to pardon my briefness this week, my Friday sessions are not quite over yet.  Nevertheless, below you will find my little tribute to the late and great Lena Horne.  Additionally, you will find our friend and contributor Hollis Lashley has enlightened us with his Flashpoint entitled Unfinished Business.  Finally, please check out our featured events and make plans to attend the Carnival Bandleaders Association of Washington DC Bar-B-Que Cookout on Sunday.  You will find the details by CLICKING HERE or by scrolling down.

The Gorgeous, Talented, Incomparable, and Legendary Singer, Actress, Mother and Activist LENA MARY CALHOUN HORNE died earlier this week, specifically on Mother's Day - May 9th, 2010, at the age of 92.  This women I absolutely adored, her voice was captivating, her performances were outstanding and her strength and outspokenness was motivating.  

We lost a woman who fought racism and even sexism throughout her career.  From my readings regarding the Cotton Club in Harlem NY, I have always been fascinated by their sad and annoying practice; however, Ms. Horne started her career at this club in 1933 at the young age of 16, and excelled from that point.  Yes, her light-skinned complexion open a lot of doors for her in this complex world.   She was the first black performer in the 40s hired to sing with a major white band, [which of course shattered racial barriers.]   And she was also the first black performer to be signed to a long-term contract with a major Hollywood studio, and went on to achieve International fame as a singer.   

I am most proud of Ms. Horne for her activism and her public stance against racial discrimination during several decades (1940s-1960s).  She was one of a few high profile African-American entertainers willing to risk their careers to support civil rights and human dignity.  As a matter of fact, during World War II, when entertaining troops for the USO, Ms. Horne refused to perform for segregated audiences or to groups in which German POWs were seated in front of African American servicemen.  Undoubtedly, her lifetime was spent battling racial and social injustices.

  • Ms. Horne has had a long and successful relationship with the NAACP; and one of the members she admired and who moved her by his optimism and personal power, was Medger Evers.  This gentleman motivated her to step up her activism during her trip in 1963 through the South.   From my readings, I understand Ms. Horne sang at a church concert and attended an NAACP rally in Jackson with Medgar Evers the weekend before Evers was gunned down in his driveway on June 12, 1963.
  • Ms. Horne was at the March on Washington where she spoke and performed on behalf of the NAACP, SNCC and the National Council of Negro Women.
  • She stood behind Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. while he gave his famous "I Have A Dream" speech and attended his funeral five years later in Atlanta. 
  • She also worked with First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt to pass anti-lynching legislation.
  • I understand Ms. Horne's Father negiotiated with MGM in 1942 saying I can get a maid for my daughter.  I don't want her in the movies playing maids.  
  • One of her quotes I am very fond of is: You can never forget you're a Negro...It's our burden.

Gosh, on the entertainment end of things, I clearly remember Todd and I watching her memorable musical movies Stormy Weather where the title tune was a big hit, and watching her range as she performed her dramatic role in Cabin in the Sky. Wow, what a great performer and lovely woman, who is indeed the matriarch of African American entertainers and a trailblazer.  She too have seen a lot in her years, and must be proud of where America is today.  Ms. Horne is survived by a daughter and 2 grandsons.

If I had the time I would go on and on about this amazing woman - Lena Horne, but I will end my tribute by saying: May she rest in peace!!!

To learn more about Ms. Horne check out the following links to view her biography: http://www.nndb.com/people/842/000024770/   or for a more detailed biography courtesy of John Andrews log on to the following: http://www.wsws.org/articles/2010/may2010/horn-m13.shtml.  Additionally, by clicking on her picture below you will be able to launch a page where you can view a nice video on her.  It was nice to see, and most importantly to see that one of our local Jazz Musicians Mr. Marcus Johnson was interviewed in this video.  Check it out, you will find it is very informative.  Actually, you can click on the following link to launch: http://english.aljazeera.net/news/americas/2010/05/20105115464120101.html 

Please Click here to launch page to see video regarding Lena Horne Courtesy Al Jazeera



On another sad note, Todd has lost his great Aunt Dorothia Jacobs who was 85 years old.  She was from the same era as Lena Horne.  Below is a few words from Todd about his great aunt. 

Todd Mangatal - Click To EnlargenGrowing up Aunt Dorothia had a lot in common with Lena Horne.  In my eyes, as a youth in boring Washington DC, she was the Aunt that lived in glamorous and exciting New York City.  One thing I remember most about Aunt Dorothia was her little teacup Poodle...[as a child this little poodle was very intriguing to me.]  In recent years, she had moved back home to the DC area to be closer to the family, and her youthful manner then amazed me; because at 80 she was useful and alert and didn't look a day over 60.  Well, another elder in my family has passed on, and it is up to us the next generation to carry the torch.  Aunt Dorothia indeed lived a long healthy life and I'm sure she has moved on to a better place. We all will miss you Aunt Dorothia...May you  rest in peace!!!


  Do you have unfinished business ?

How are you living your life ?

Are you acting with compassion ?

Or gossiping and causing strife ?

Are you defined by a position ?

Think youre better than the next ?

Do you understand what love is ?

Are you living with pretext ?

Have you made positive difference

In the life of someone else ?

Can you help to fulfill some need

In anyone beside yourself ?

If you knew that death was waiting

And that today would be your last,

Would you be peaceful or panicking

About a selfish, sordid past ?

All have their unfinished business,

You have as much as you allow,

But, let us always be remindful

That the time to act is now.

Now is the time to ask forgiveness,

Now is the time to make amends,

Now is the time to say I LOVE YOU,

To say Im sorry to your friends.

There may not be a tomorrow,

This moment now may be your last,

If you have unfinished business,

Act, lest too much time has passed.



Have an enjoyable and fantastic weekend, and we will certainly vibe some more next week.

We welcome your input, so if you have any comment or feedback on the commentary or events - please feel free to send an e-mail to: susan@ariousentertainment.us 





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May 16, 2010

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CBLA Cordially Invite you to:



May 22, 2010

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815 V Street, N.W., Washington DC

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(Courtesy of the 9:30 Club) 

What was the name of the song that Steel Pulse recorded for the film Do The Right Thing, and who's US Presidential Inauguration did this group play at?

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