It was my first time at Sneaker Pawn in Harlem, an exclusive spot that’s more than just a sneaker store. I climbed the steps to the brownstone and met rapper Trip Lee upstairs where we took a seat on a bench surrounded by sneakers and sports gear. What a great setting to just kick it! We chopped it up discussing his new album Rise, the journey that led him to choosing his passion of music and much more!


Growing up in Sacramento, Victoria Monét started writing her own songs at a very young age. She comes from a musical family, so one might say that she was born to be a singer. Monét admits that it was a natural fit for her and she’s been singing and dancing for as long as she can remember; getting her start in the church.  She's come along way, now signed to Atlantic Records.  October was a big month for her as she was featured on two tracks on T.I.'s latest album, Paperwork.  She also made her iTunes debut with her own release, Nightmares & Lullabies Act I.  She is more than just another female singer that will be here today and gone tomorrow, Victoria Monét has all the makings of the real deal.  We caught up with her for the full story, before the breakthrough.


Joe Budden was never supposed to make it this far. Whether it was from the drugs or the streets, he probably should've been down and out somewhere. Once the music industry took hold of him that was only supposed to be one more powerful force that would eat away at him and leave for dead. And Def Jam surely tried. Looking back at where he started, it’s a wonder that he's still here. Had it been today's industry, he probably would've succumbed to the politics, but thankfully he's been in it since 2003. Hip-Hop aficionados are grateful for his time in the spotlight and for his Mood Music lyrical diary entries as well as his “emo” rap forays.


Lil’ Mo
emerged on the music scene in the late 90’s lending her voice to hits like, “Hot Boyz” by Missy Elliott, “Put It On Me” and “I Cry” both by Ja Rule. Still it was her breakout single, the 2001 “Superwoman pt. II” that helped solidify her name is music circles. The Fabolous assisted song led to the release of her debut album, Based On A True Story, garnering her tons of fans. With her success came the drama however, including an incident in San Francisco where she was attacked with a bottle of champagne and required 20 stitches. There also came industry beefs with some of the same people she found early success with, most notably Ja Rule.


If you know football, you know Deion Sanders. Primetime! Mr. “Must Be The Money.” Neon Deion. The Hall-of-Famer and two-time Super Bowl champion hasn’t really needed an introduction since his meteoric rise in the NFL spotlight, but these days it’s his moves off the field that require conversation. The second season of his reality show, Deion’s Family Playbook premieres on OWN Network on Saturday, November 1st at 9p.m. EST. For those that aren’t familiar, the show features Deion in a light that many might not be familiar with—Deion as a family man raising 10 children. That’s not all however, as Deion also helps run a charter school in Dallas Texas, Prime Prep Academy for grades K-12, and a nonprofit organization, Prime Time Association (aka TRUTH), which teaches young adults through sports and education.


Jagged Edge's eight album, JE Heartbreak II finds the quartet reunited with producer Jermaine Dupri, label So So Def and their original management Mauldin Brand Agency. The theme here is all about bringing back true R&B, so the guys shy away from Rap features or features of any kind, as well as Hip-Hop infused beats. Slow jams are plentiful in this 12 song album and with Bryan Michael Cox assisting the Casey twins on songwriting and production, its very much reminiscent to the sound of early Jagged Edge albums.



 
 

 

 

The scandal involving Ray Rice and the elevator incident is something that people have been talking about for months. For those who are not familiar with the entire scandal, or have only learned about what has happened due to the recent media frenzy, the incident happened in mid-February of 2014. TMZ originally released footage of the aftermath of the incident, which showed Ray Rice dragging his wife out of the elevator, on February 19th. For the following months, the legal matters of the situation were handled, leading to Ray Rice applying for a program that could potentially clear him of the charges. On July 24th, the NFL announced a two-game suspension for Rice, with Roger Goodell standing behind the decision and Raven's General Manager Ozzie Newsome calling the punishment “Significant but fair.” The situation was thought to be at a close until footage from inside the elevator was released by TMZ on September 8th. This in turn led to more public outrage against Ray Rice and him quickly being cut from the Baltimore Ravens and then suspended from the NFL indefinitely. NFL officials, such as NFL vice president Brian McCarthy, stated that the video was not made available to them and they only saw the video at the same time it was released by TMZ. However, The Associated Press reported that a law enforcement official did in fact send the video to the NFL office and received acknowledgment that the footage was received and viewed by officials. So it is no surprise that the current situation has raised more questions regarding the harsher punishment given to Ray Rice and whether Roger Goodell and Ozzie Newsome saw the footage before they made their original decision.

Read more: Should The NFL's Handling of Ray Rice Be Questioned?


It’s that time of year again. The 2014 NBA Playoffs begin this evening, and in honor of that, I’ve broken down the Western Conference’s matchups, (my apologies to Eastern Conference fans, but nothing really exciting happening in the first round) their biggest matchups and best strategies. The eight teams facing off from the West are some of the most talented teams in the NBA. From the Golden State Warriors and their shooting stars (no pun intended) Steph Curry and Klay Thompson to the Oklahoma City Thunder and their 4th time shooting title winner Kevin Durant, the West is completely star studded and should provide some incredible match ups in this post season.

Read more: 2014 NBA Playoff First Round Western Conference Preview


I remember the last play of my high school football career. 

I suffered a high ankle sprain when the opposing tight end hit me with an illegal cut block. At the time, I relished the moment. Despite all the efforts of my teammates to assist, I walked off on my own, dragging what was left of my healthy left leg. I received a standing ovation from the crowd as praise for my "toughness." It was the football mentality's machismo that encouraged me to limp off without help despite all evidence to the contrary to common senseThat limp is all too familiar to those who know me today, as it springs up after an hour or two of any pickup basketball game. 

I can’t, however, recall the last day I played football.

Read more: Football Night In America - Reality of the Concussion


186 days. That’s the length between the Super Bowl and the first NFL preseason game. There’s no one more excited to see the media attention turn away from the NFL player conduct than Roger Goodell. Since the end of Super Bowl 47, more than 40 arrests involved NFL employees. More than 8 per month, almost two per week since the Super Bowl. An ugly offseason was capped off by an Aaron Hernandez murder indictment.

Read more: NFL vs. NBA - Image Is Everything, Offseason Blues

 Last Wednesday at 4:00pm I received this text message:

I had two paradoxical reactions to this message. The first reaction was boyish excitement at the possibility of being in the same room as one of the most (in my opinion the most) magnetic personality in the history of sports. Every thing about Michael Gerard Tyson was must-see TV, there hasn’t been a documentary made about him I haven’t invested the time to watch. I could only imagine what it might be like to experience what he was like live and in person. 

So naturally…

Read more: "Meeting" Mike Tyson

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