Mohammad Ali was and will be an American Icon

Muhammad Ali engaging in some of his famous trash poetry talks

Cassius Marcellus Clay was born in the West End district of Louisville on January 17, 1942. His father Cassius, was a sign-writer with artistic ambitions and his mother, Odessa, a domestic servant. His father, who was told to be a womanizer and heavy drinker, was named after his great-grandfather’s slave owner. His father owned a home and Cassius Clay had only one sibling, his brother Rudy Clay. As a result Cassius Clay grew up in a middle class home, which was unusual in those days.

His mother’s grandfather was an Irish man, Abe Grady, who had married her African American grandmother. When Cassius was only 12 years of age he saw someone steal his Schwinn bicycle and he reported it to the police. He told the officer he was going to “whup” the thief. The kind officer told him he better learn how to box first. The police man, Joe Martin, took a liking of the talkative young boy and persuaded him to join his boxing club. Six weeks later, Clay won his first bout in a split decision. Cassius Clay trained with him for six years after which Joe Martin turned professional.

Cassius Clay, just like his father, was named after Cassius Marcellus Clay, a 19th-century farmer who did not believe in slavery. He became an anti-slavery crusader. Although he inherited 40 slaves from his father he emancipated them once he had a chance to do so. This abolitionist edited an anti-slavery newspaper, he commanded troops in the Mexican-American War and served as minister to Russia under President Abraham Lincoln. Even though he was a second cousin to the Kentucky Senator Henry Clay, he put himself in considerable danger with his abolitionist attitudes. Clay faced death threats, beatings, and was stabbed and shot by political opponents. Despite the ordeal he lived to the ripe old age of 92.

The young boxer, Cassius Clay was academically challenged as he spent most of his time in school day dreaming instead of focusing on his academics. Atwood Wilson, the school’s principal, had a soft spot for the entertaining young Cassius and introduced him to the school assembly: ‘Here he is, ladies and gentleman, Cassius Clay! The next heavyweight champion of the world. This guy is going to make a million dollars.” Their shared dream came true with a glorious beginning of Mohamed Ali’s illustrious boxing career. For the last four years of Clay’s amateur career he was trained by boxing cut man, Chuck Bodak. Clay went on to win six Kentucky Golden Gloves titles, two national Golden Gloves titles, an Amateur Athletic Union National Title, and the Light Heavyweight gold medal. Clay’s amateur record was 100 wins with five losses. At the young age of 18 Clay won gold as a light-heavyweight amateur at the 1960 Olympic Games in Rome.

After he took gold in Rome’s Olympic games, Cassius Clay immediately took the opportunity to go professional since he was offered to financially backed by a local Kentucky Millionaire. This relationships was short lived since Cassius Clay did not enjoy being treated with contempt as a slave by that man and his ill mannered family. He left and chose the backing of a small consortium of eleven business man in Louisville, KY. He tried to be trained by Sugar Ray Robinson but was rebuffed due to his boisterous personality and refusal to participate in the training duties such as cleaning dishes and washing the floors. More

Cassius Clay successfully recruited Angelo Dundee who ran the legendary Fifth Street Gym in Miami Beach. Dundee encouraged Cassius Clay to freely express himself as did the assistant trainer, Drew ‘Bundini’ Brown. Bundini came up with the phrase ‘Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee’, and started Clay’s habit of forecasting the round in which he would fell his opponent.

While he had a string of successes in beating many of his opponents he annoyed many boxing fans with his belligerent psychological war fare and insults of the opponents before entering the ring. He won his first professional fight against Tunney Hunsaker in October 1963. Thereafter Clay amassed a record of 19–0 with 15 wins by knockout. He defeated boxers including Tony Esperti, Jim Robinson, Donnie Fleeman, Alonzo Johnson, George Logan, Willi Besmanoff, Lamar Clark, Doug Jones and Henry Cooper. Clay also beat his former trainer and veteran boxer Archie Moore in a 1962 match.

Cassius Clay had been greatly moved by his father’s enraged account of the lynching of a 14-year-old black boy, Emmett Till, in Mississippi in 1955. And it was his father who was encouraged by the political leader Marcus Garvey to be proud of and retrace their ancestral roots. Growing up he was upset by segregation in Louisville, especially when his mother was refused a drink of water in a whites-only café. He started going to the rallies of religious leader Elijah Muhammad from 1959 and befriended Malcolm X in 1962. He secretly converted to Islam at age 18.

During that time he was attended by Ferdie Pacheco, his doctor, who said of Clay: ‘In 1961, 1962, 1963, he was the most perfect physical specimen I had ever seen … perfectly proportioned, handsome, lightning reflexes and a great mind for sports.’

Cassius Clay was a devout Muslim and dedicated member of the Nation of Islam, having fallen under the tutelage of Malcolm X in 1962.

Columbia Records released a 1963 spoken word album called “I Am the Greatest” in which the 21-year-old rising star performed his poetry, backed my musical accompaniment, before an audience. The album also included two songs by the boxer, including a cover of the Ben E. King hit “Stand by Me.”

By late 1963 he was qualified to challenge Sonny Liston for the title. Cassius Clay wanted to announce that he had converted to Islam but what asked to wait after the fight with Sonny Liston to prevent a back lash that was sure to happened before the fight. The fight was set for February 25, 1964, in Miami. Liston was an intimidating personality, a dominating fighter with a criminal past and ties to the mob. Cassius Clay was blinded during the fight by ointment that Liston put on his gloves. Liston had been accused previously by two other fighters of “burning” eyes. But, Cassius Clay won the fight and was declared champion. Liston claimed he had an injured shoulder and others rumored that Liston had bet against himself to pay of his own debts. By winning this fight, Clay became at age 22 the youngest boxer to take the title from a reigning heavyweight champion.

By 1964 Clay had won 19 straight fights, all but four of them by knockouts, and was ready to challenge for the world title.

In March 1964 Cassius Clay was bestowed the name Mohammad Ali by his religious teachers. He was initially inspired by Malcolm X, choosing to change his last name to X for a while during his religious Muslim training. He stayed with the Nation of Islam, despite the rift between the founder and Malcolm X following the Kennedy assassination. Malcolm X was expelled and started his own competing Islamic organization. When rumors began circulating that year that Cassius Clay had joined the Nation of Islam, one of his bouts was nearly canceled, and when he officially joined in 1964, he had his boxing titles stripped from two organizations, including the WBA.

When Cassius Clay announced that he had changed his name for religious reasons the press reacted strongly. The Saturday Evening Post wrote: “For a time, when he was confining himself to bad poetry, Cassius was a loudmouth but a likable character who seemed to be harmless in or out of the ring. Then he won the championship and became, in his own estimation, “The Greatest.” After the fight, he acknowledged that he was a Black Muslim, converted by the arch-extremist, Malcolm X, the man who crowed that President Kennedy’s assassination was “a case of the chickens coming home to roost.” Malcolm X was separated from the Black Muslim movement after that remark and is now attempting to organize his own black nation. He wants to arm all the Negroes in the U.S. and ultimately take them back to Africa.” It went on to say: “Clay’s history of calculated deceptions now prompts the suspicion, of course, that his present case of galloping religion is but another decoy to serve who knows what end. Clay himself strengthened the suspicion when he declared, “Just by my being a Muslim, that should draw a bigger gate…” In actuality his commitment to Islam has cost him roughly two million dollars in commercial endorsements.

In July 1964 he met a cocktail waitress named Sonji Roi and they married after a one month courtship. But the pair separated when she refused to conform to the strict edicts by which the group thought women should live. They were divorced by January 1966.

April 28, 1967 Mohammad Ali reported to the Military Entrance Processing Station in Houston. As officials called his name for induction to the Army to fight in the Vietnam War he wouldn’t step forward. He was eventually arrested, but that wasn’t even close to the end of his legal woes. A week before appearing in Houston, he told reporters in his home town of Louisville, Kentucky, that he planned to not accept induction in military service. He stated to the press: “Why should they ask me to put on a uniform and go ten thousand miles from home and drop bombs and bullets on brown people in Vietnam while so-called Negro people in Louisville are treated like dogs and denied simple human rights?”

Two months later, a jury took just 20 minutes to convict Ali of draft evasion. He was given a five-year prison sentence and a $10,000 fine; he was stripped of his passport and his heavyweight title, and was banned from fighting in the United States. It took four years to eventually settle the case after he had taking it all the way to the Supreme Court. Ali would remain out of jail on posted bail while his case was being appealed, he would not fight again until October 1970. The following year, the US Supreme Court overturned his conviction in a unanimous 8-0 ruling. Full Transcript

Between February 25, 1964 and September 19, 1964 Muhammad Ali reigned as the undisputed heavyweight boxing champion. Nicknamed “The Greatest”, Ali was involved in several historic boxing matches. Notable among these were the first Liston fight, three with rival Joe Frazier, and one with George Foreman, in which he regained titles he had been stripped of seven years earlier. After the Superior Court reversed the ruling of the lower courts and agreed that he refused military service legally as a conscientious objector he finally was able to fight again. At last he was able to fight again. After being prevented from fighting for four years he lost the first fight against Joe Frazier. After Joe Frazier lost the title to George Foreman Mohammad Ali urged George Foreman to a fight which organized by Don King in Africa.

Mohammad Ali fights George Foreman to regain ‘his’ world champion title.

His doctor, Freddie Pacheco, resigned when Mohammad Ali was in his 30s and starting to show the effects of taking too many punches, yet refusing his advice to retire before he suffered permanent injury.

He was then married to Belinda Boyd from 1967 until 1975. During his relationship with Belinda, Muhammad started seeing Veronica Porsche in 1975. He converted to Sunni Islam in 1975. The affair ruined his second marriage with Belinda Boyd by 1977. In 1977 he married Veronica that summer who was already pregnant with their daughter, Hana. Their second daughter, Laila, was born in Dec. 1977, and the couple split up in 1986. Muhammad then married Yolonda Williams in Nov. 1986, and they adopted a son, Assad Amin. He was married to Yolonda, who he’d been friends with since 1964, at the time of his death on June 3. Yolonda took care of him throughout his very difficult 40 years while he suffered from Parkinson Disease.

In 1986 he began adhering to Sufism a rather peaceful and mature religion.  It helped him live his life out gracefully despite the fact he suffered from Parkinson Disease.  He was a true blessing to many people and raised the awareness about the beauty of grace, personal commitment to truth and ones’ own convictions.  Mohammad Ali was a great man and he will be truly missed.

Muhammad Ali died after a 32-year battle with Parkinson’s Disease with his family by his side

Nicolas Bearde shares the recording process of ” I Remember You”

The recording of “I Remember You.” by Nicolas Bearde narrated by producer and arranger Josh Nelson

Nicolas Bearde re-imagines Nat King Cole’s classic songs strongly influenced by the beautiful phrasing of Nat King Cole’s daughter, Natalie Cole. Make sure you catch him live  at the Vibrato Grill, LA for his Ella and Joe tribute September 20; House Concert in Highland Park, Los Angeles, September 21; KCSM-FM San Mateo – LIVE w/Alisa Clancey, San Mateo, CA, October 3rd; Yoshi’s Oakland – CD Release Celebration, October 8th; Kuumbwa Jazz Center, Santa Cruz, October 24; Sequoia Room, Nicolas Bearde’s own Quintet, Fort Bragg, CA, October 26; For details more dates and tickets visit: Nicolas Bearde Calendar 

I Remember You, CD Release by Nicolas Bearde

If I had to choose just one day
To last my whole life through
It would surely be that Sunday

The day that I met you Newborn whippoorwills were calling from the hills
Summer was a-coming in but fast
Lots of daffodils were showing off their skills
Nodding all together, I could almost hear them whisper
Go on, kiss her, go on and kiss her

And if I had to choose one moment
To live within my heart
It would be that tender moment
Recalling how we started
Darling, it would be when you smiled at me
That way, that Sunday, that summer

Newborn whippoorwills were calling from the hills
Summer was a-comin’ in but fast
Lots of daffodils were showin’ off their skills
Nodding all together, I could almost hear them whisper
Go on, kiss her, go on and kiss her

If I had to choose one moment
To live within my heart
It would be that tender moment
Recalling how we started
Darling, it would be when you smiled at me
That way, that Sunday, that summer

If I had to choose just one day

Source: LyricFind
Songwriters: George David Weiss / Joe Sherman
That Sunday, That Summer (1992 Digital Remaster)
lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, Concord Music Publishing LLC

Nicolas Bearde’s 6th solo CD, is produced and arranged by Josh Nelson. Nicolas Bearde recreates the timeless songs of one of his earliest influences, Nat “King” Cole in his very own style like classic jazz with a pleasant old Louis Armstrong and Ella Fitzgerald style pop influence. His passionate performance brings back youthful memories as though they were new and in the presents. The fresh arrangements by the amazing Josh Nelson the long-time pianist for the late and beloved Natalie Cole bring her Jazz influence on her dad’s song alive. The sultry saxophone created by special guest Eric Alexander, Tenor Saxophonist adds a lot of texture to the album.

Nicolas Bearde’s new album “I Remember You” is played on most Jazz Music Platforms and will be performed around the world. Today ranks at 21st on the Jazz Week Chart.

In case you don’t know Nicolas Bearde you will enjoy the summary by Kumbwaa Jazz who describe his new album and performances as: Jazz vocalist Nicolas Bearde has won accolades from critics and jazz audiences worldwide for his velvet tone and engaging performances. His music has been critically acclaimed by JazzizJazzTimesJazz Week, and All About Jazz and Beard’s fifth solo album, Invitation, rose quickly to the Top 20 on the Jazz Week charts. Bearde first made his mark in jazz as part of Bobby McFerrins’ revolutionary a cappella group Voicestra, all while carving out his own solo career.  His silky baritone invites comparisons to Jon Lucien, Lou Rawls, and Joe Williams, and his new album re-imagines the timeless songs of one of his earliest influences, Nat King Cole. With supple phrasing, passionate delivery, and fresh arrangements by Josh Nelson (long-time pianist for the late Natalie Cole), Bearde breathes new life into Cole’s trove of enduring classics which include “Sweet Lorraine”, “L-O-V-E”, “Straighten up and Fly Right”, and “Tenderly”.

Bearde breathes new life into Nat’s trove of enduring classics which include “Tenderly”, “Straighten up and Fly Right”, “Sweet Lorraine” and “Funny.” Join Nicolas Bearde international fan club by following him via.

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Theodore Roosevelt used his popularity to protect 230 million acres of public land

President Theodore Roosevelt, one of the most conservative Republilcan Presidents created the U.S. Forest Service and established 150 national forests, 5 national parks, 18 national monuments, 4 national game preserves and 51 national bird reserves.

Russian sponsored Trump instead is selling off the land, licenses it to polluters and seems to intent to ruin the parks. Conservation does not seem part of his vocabulary.

Instead of maintaining the parks and allowing the public to enjoy the beauty of this country, he uses park fees as his personal lunch money. He cut the budget set aside for much needed repairs of bathrooms, trail maintenance, and traditionally used for running campgrounds. And on top of that he uses the funds to hold fancy parties to which only donors and cow-towing Republicans are invited. For instance his “Dictator Phantasy” themed Fourth of July extravaganza was paid for by trail maintenance money from across the lands. Outside online states: ” The $2.5 million price tag of the July 4th celebration is compounded by the loss of an estimated $6 million in National Park entry fees during the government shutdown earlier this year.” They explain that the July 4th budget diversion could have funded the training of hundreds of rangers and much much more.

Roosevelt cherished this country

It is also vandalism wantonly to destroy or to permit the destruction of what is beautiful in nature, whether it be a cliff, a forest, or a species of mammal or bird. Here in the United States we turn our rivers and streams into sewers and dumping-grounds, we pollute the air, we destroy forests, and exterminate fishes, birds and mammals — not to speak of vulgarizing charming landscapes with hideous advertisements. But at last it looks as if our people were awakening.

Fast forward to the presents under

Yes, it can get worse: Anti-union conservative Patrick Pizzella appointed to lead the Department of Labor.

Patrick Pizzella, anti-labor rights lobbyist now in charge of labor. Inhumane attitudes celebrated in WH.

Patrick Pizzella has been appointed to lead the Department of Labor as acting secretary. Alex Acosta announced his resignation due to criticism for his light prosecution of sex offender Jeffrey Epstein. Acoasta explained the light sentences: “We now have 12 years of knowledge and hindsight and we live in a very different world,” he said. “Today’s world treats victims very, very differently.”

Patrick Pizzella fought to keep minimum wages at $3.05 and worse.

Mother Jones reported: “Patrick Pizzella 1990s to help the Northern Mariana Islands—a US commonwealth 1,500 miles from Japan—defeat a bipartisan effort to rein in a guest worker program that the Labor Department found relied on indentured workers. When Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) asked Pizzella whether he knew about reports of forced abortions and routine beatings at the time.” At the time he worked for Jack Abramoff, who later was found guilty of 21 crimes. Together they wanted to shape the Northern Mariana Islands as laboratories in which oppressors would be able to abuse people without any laws to protect the oppressed.

Wendy Doromol, a teacher turned human rights activist, reported on NPR in 2006: “The barbed wire around the factories faced inward so that the workers, mostly women, couldn’t get out. They had quotas that were impossible for these people to reach and if they didn’t reach them, they’d have to stay until they finished the quota and they wouldn’t be paid for that work. They were hot, the barracks were horrible. A lot of the females were told you work during the day in the garment factory and then at night you can go and work in a club and they’d force them into prostitution at night.”

Forced labor and forcing women into prostitution are Pizzalla’s idealized working conditions.

What Pizzella didn’t say in a 2017 Senate Hearing was that he helped lead a public relations campaign to rebrand the islands as a paragon of free-market principles. Between 1996 and 2000, emails and billing records reviewed by Mother Jones show that Pizzella and colleagues organized all-expenses-paid trips to the islands for more than 100 members of Congress, their staffers, and conservative thought leaders. When they got back, Pizzella helped them convince colleagues that the Northern Mariana Islands were, as his old boss (convicted fellon) Abramoff liked to put it, a “laboratory of liberty.”

In 2006 Daily Kos reported: “This is also about a GOP Culture of Corruption that sold their principles, honor, Party and Country for power. It is a story of Sex, forced abortions, prostitution, sweatshops and special favors for the worst Foreign Nationals on the World stage.”

Apparently Pizzella’s work paid off and he kept the $3.05 per hour minimum wage in the commonwealth, which lasted from 1997 to 2007, when President George W. Bush put an end to that. Pizzella celebrated that the minimum wage was lower than in the U.S. and some worker protections are weaker and seemingly non-existent, leading to lower production costs. That allowed garments to be labeled “Made in USA” without having to comply with all U.S. labor laws. 

Pizzella’s record as a lobbyist also includes work for a Russian front group, the government of the Marshall Islands, and a trade association fighting against the minimum wage in a U.S. commonwealth.

In a statement Friday, July 12 2019 , Kristine Lucius, the group’s executive vice president for policy and government affairs, said Pizzella’s record “shows he has a clear bias against working people’s rights – which may be good for Trump’s agenda, but bad for the people the department is meant to serve.”

Pizzella was appointed to the Federal Labor Relations Board by President Barack Obama in 2013. He previously served as the assistant secretary of labor for administration and management for eight years under President George W. Bush.

FCC Chairman no longer wants to be questioned in official hearings about Free Speech, Net Neutrality, Unfair Competition, etc.

Ajit Pai is tired of all the hearings. He prefers to receive complaints and concerns via suggestion box.


WASHINGTON, July 22, 2019—Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai today announced that he has presented his colleagues with two new proposals to modernize and streamline the agency’s processes.  Under the first, the FCC would continue the agency’s move toward electronic filing and correspondence by fully transitioning the Universal Licensing System—the agency’s largest licensing system—from paper to electronic format.  The second proposal would expedite the Commission’s hearing processes by expanding the use of written hearings (i.e. hearings conducted without live testimony).

“As the communications marketplace is being transformed by the digital revolution, we must continue to modernize our own operations.” said Chairman Pai.  “That’s why I’m introducing two new proposals to update and streamline our processes for the digital age.  By transitioning more records and communications from paper to electronic format, we can save money and increase our efficiency.  And by streamlining our hearing rules, we can resolve disputes more quickly, which will benefit the private sector as well as the Commission.  I hope that my colleagues will join me in supporting these good-government initiatives.”  


Address your concerns directly to: Will Wiquist, (202) 418-0509 or email correspondence to

Media Relations: (202) 418-0500 / ASL: (844) 432-2275 / TTY: (888) 835-5322 / Twitter: @FCC /
This is an unofficial announcement of Commission action. 

Release of the full text of a Commission order constitutes official action.  See MCI v. FCC, 515 F.2d 385 (D.C. Cir. 1974).

The Book “Healing Criminal Justice” by Judge Jeffrey Tauber now available!

 Healing Criminal Justice is available for a free download in July 2019 on Amazon. The book Healing Criminal Justice: a journey to restore community in the courts.

Twenty-Five years ago, a small group of judges, DAs, PDs, treatment specialists and others banded together to form the National Association of Drug Court Professionals (NADCP). The pioneers of the drug court movement made sacrifices, overcame challenges and persevered to create one of the most important voices for criminal justice drug reform in the world.

Over 1.5 million persons have entered drug courts since NADCP’s formation 25 years ago. Some 250,000 persons have been trained at its programs. And over 3000 drug courts have been established during that time.

Healing Criminal Justice’s central theme is the rediscovery of the healing power of community. Judge Tauber also lays out his vision of a future, in which society, recoiling from its overindulgence in imprisonment, returns to its historic reliance on community as the controller of criminal behavior. Finally Healing Criminal Justice speaks to how leadership from within can change the trajectory of a major institution, even one as immutable as the criminal justice system.

In Healing Criminal Justice, Judge Tauber describes his experience as one of the nation’s first drug court judges in Oakland and how a nascent field with a few scattered programs was transformed into a nationwide movement. He recalls his worldwide travels as well as his experience as a struggling saxman playing in Oakland’s blues clubs, and how both contributed to his understanding of one of the most vital elements in the criminal justice system: community.

Healing Criminal Justice: A Journey to Restore Community in Our Courts arrives just in time to celebrates the 25th Anniversary of the National Association of Drug Court Professionals (NADCP).

Book Excerpt

The year was 2010. Reentry Courts were a part of the larger Problem-Solving Court field; which were in turn, built upon the success of Drug Courts. Problem-Solving Courts had the potential to be a pathway forward for a nation overwhelmed by complex social justice problems, rooted in alcohol, drug, and mental health issues. Drug Courts were providing a template for a more humane and less punitive approach to treating the drug offender. To read the entire excerpt click here

About the Author Jeffrey Tauber

Judge Jeffrey Tauber ret., is a pioneer in the development of court-based rehabilitation systems, spearheading the development and growth of Drug Courts and other Problem-Solving courts across the United States. He was the founding President of the National Association of Drug Court Professionals (NADCP,1994-2001) and Executive Director of the National Drug Court Institute (1997-2001).  In 2008 he was elected “president emeritus for life” of the National Association of Drug Court Professionals. In June of 1999, the newly founded International Association of Drug Court Professionals (IADCP) elected him their first chairperson. In that capacity, he presented before the United Nations, the Organization of American States, the Caribbean Conference of Magistrates and other International organizations. As a judge in Oakland, California, Jeffrey Tauber initiated and presided over the design and implementation of the Oakland Drug Court Program, one of the first in the nation (1990) and was the first President of the California Association of Drug Court Professionals (CADCP).

He has written extensively on court-ordered rehabilitation systems and drug policy, including the first Drug Court Manual published, “Drug Courts: A Judicial Manual”, (California Center for Judicial Education and Research, 1994) and “Rational Drug Policy Reform: A Resource Guide.” (CSPC 2001). He has also written “A Proposal for a National Reentry Court Initiative: Four Policy Papers.” (Alexandria VA: National Association of Drug Court Professionals, 2009).

While on the bench, (1985-97) Oakland’s Drug Court received the Public Employees’ Roundtable Award for “Outstanding County-Run Public Service Program in the Nation” and the California Administration Office of the Courts’ “Ralph Kelps Award for Court Innovations”. Judge Tauber (ret.) was a member of the California Judiciary from 1985-1997. He is a graduate of the City University of New York and Boston University Law School.

Jeffrey Tauber is currently the Director/Editor of Reentry Court Solutions (RCS), an educational initiative that provides a national information website (, as well as technical assistance, training, and advisory services to the field. He has consulted and been an advisor to over a dozen nations.

More Details: To learn more about visit these links Healing Criminal Justice, to learn more about the NADCP to learn more about how you may wish to get engaged visit

For more information about the book and Jeffrey Tauber please contact him at(510) 847-2374;

Please feel free to use the YouTube Videos or this photo in your story or contact us to receive additional materials:

Judge jeffrey Tauber, author of Healing Criminal Justice and popular Bay Area Saxophonist

Please join our list of events producer, panels who like you believe that a better work/life balance is the answer to a higher standard of living for all. #Equity

We look forward to working with you for a better world.

Celebrate Nicolas Bearde’s 6th Solo Release at Yoshi’s in Oakland Tuesday, October 8, 2019: Reserve your tickets now!

Nicolas Bearde enchants audiences all around the world. Don’t miss this rare local show!

Nicolas Bearde returns to Oakland’s famed  Yoshi’s Jazz Club on October 8th, 2019  where he will be performing music from his latest CD, ” I Remember You” the music of Nat “King” Cole..

Joining him for this performance will be a stellar group of musicians featuring Glen Pearson on piano, Ruth Davies on bass, Lorca Hart on drums, and Charles McNeal on sax.

Nicolas’ shows sell out quickly – so be sure to get your tickets early, and while they last.

As a bonus feature for this performance Yoshi’s has set up a MEET & GREET beginning at 7pm, where you can hang with Nicolas and choose a premier seat in advance in the
first 2 rows. Showtime is 8pm


More info/ Calendar

Right Groove Records
LIKE” Nicolas at facebook

Enjoy Jonah Melvon featuring Adesha at the Art + Soul Celebration on July 27, 2019 Jonah Melvon featuring Adesha on Saturday July 27,2019 Oakland Art + Soul
“Jonah Melvon featuring Adesha”

July 12, 2019, 12th & Clay Street, Oakland, CA, Jonah Melvon featuring Adesha will perform at the Oakland Art + Soul Festival, on Saturday 27th at 5pm. You will find their performance at the Art & Soul: Victor McElhaney Emerging Artists Stage on 12th and Clay which is west of Frank H. Ogawa Plaza and easily reachable with public transportation. See entire line up here.

The Oakland Art + Soul Festival is an annual tradition to celebrate art, music, great food and the Oakland Spirit. The festival brings together a wide range of musical performers, artists, dancers, and vendors to create one of the West Coast’s best city wide celebrations. It features 4 stages, dance areas, and a sea of food vendors including Jambalaya, Gumbo, Crawfish Etoufee Catfish, Snapper, Oysters, Crab Cakes, Shrimp, Hush Puppies, Remoulade Sauce Ethiopian Cuisine Fried Chicken Chicken Tikka Masala, Veggie Pakoras Pork, Chicken or Veggie Lumpia Hawaiian BBQ, Malasadas Tri Tip and Sausage Sandwiches, Smoked Turkey Legs, Jerk Chicken, Funnel Cake, Jazzy Juice Drinks and much more.

Jonah Melvon and his sister Adesha are born and raised in Oakland. Their success is based on their world-class talent and their commitment to positivity whether that is at their performances, community involvement, or sharing the positive and mellow soul spirit internationally. Their music can be found on Spotify or Soundcloud.

Jonah Melvon featuring Adesha are taking the world with their breezy sound and intelligent lyrics.

Aside of Jonah Melvon featuring Adesha’s songs about truth, love songs, that include the city, relationships, love for parentsclear communication, and the importance of the wider community to forge content lives.

Jonah Melvon and his sister Adesha lift the spirit with their intelligent and fun lyrics and smooth soul music; using socially conscious rap lyrics to spread love and joy from their soul.

Jonah Melvon is dedicated to “Bridging the Gap” and Equity for all!

Jonah Melvon featuring Adesha will perform as the headliners for the Art + Soul Emerging Artists Stage

In Memory of Victor McElhaney

Art + Soul has partnered with Angela Wellman, Founding Director of the Oakland Public Conservatory of Music (OPC), to present two days of music performed by emerging artists in loving memory of the late Victor McElhaney, son of Oakland City Councilmember Lynette McElhaney. An immensely talented drummer, Victor joined the OPC musical family at age 10 and was a founding member of the Frederick Douglass Youth Ensemble, the organization’s pre-professional ensemble that debuted at Art + Soul in 2009. Confirmed headliners include Jonah Melvon and Adesha ─ R&B/conscious hip hop artists and siblings from Oakland on Saturday ─ and Victor’s Village, a special showcase featuring musicians who loved and worked with Victor, curated by Bay Area hip hop artists SOL Development on Sunday. Performances on the Emerging Artists Stage will take place both days of the festival, also featuring Union de la Bahia, Ajai KasimSean Huang Ensemble,and The Void on Saturday; Barbara DeveauxGenius Wesley, Jayla Hernandez,and Oaktown Jazz Workshop on Sunday. A separate announcement about this new festival stage with more details on the artists will be issued soon.

Art + Soul Oakland 2019 takes place in downtown Oakland Saturday, July 27 and Sunday, July 28, from noon to 6 p.m., centered in and around Frank H. Ogawa Plaza. Advance tickets are available for purchase online for just $12 Adults and $6 Seniors (65 & older). Festivalgoers can save even more with two-day tickets available through advance purchase only. At the door, admission will be $15 Adults and $9 Seniors (65 & older). Ages 18 and under enjoy free admission (no ticket required).

Art + Soul Oakland 2019 is Northern California’s most accessible festival with direct service via both BART’s 12th Street City Center station and AC Transit, in addition to $5 parking in the adjacent City Center West Garage, 12th Street at Martin Luther King Jr., Way. Free attended bicycle parking will be available (please bring your own lock).

About us and how to get in touch for further conversations, interviews, etc.:

The Oakland Art + Soul Festival one of the top highlights of the SF Bay Area Summer.

To learn more about the Oakland Art + Soul Festival please contact Samee Roberts 510.550.4804, ext. 1|

To learn more about the Oakland Art + Soul Festival’ Emerging Artist Stage in honor of the late Victor McElhaney, son of Oakland City Councilmember Lynette McElhaney please contact Angela Wellman 510-836-4649 |

To learn more about Jonah Melvon and the Rainwater Project, please visit his website at

See you at the show! To set up an appointment for an interview or requests for additional materials with the label, photos, video links, etc. please text Edie Okamoto, Media Relations, at 510-693-0166 or facebook or linked in or reach out at

About the Rainwater Project

You can hear the music on Spotify or purchase them on Amazon.

Please join our list of sponsors who like you believe that education and better paying jobs are the answer to a higher standard of living for all. #Equity

Sponsored by Riovida Networks: RioVida Networks brings causes, celebrities, music, film makers, artist and corporations together for mutual benefit.

HOTT is an Oakland-based 501c3 nonprofit dedicated to enhancing the region’s economic and cultural landscape through marketing,public relations, event production, and operational support for area arts, civic, and community

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Sponsored by Vigilint Biosensors: Keeping Families together 24/7 – digitally.

Word Class Author & Speaker Whitney Vosburgh (“Work The Future Today”) to Host “Change Yourself, Change the World” Workshops: August 10-11th & 17-18th in Berkeley, CA

Change Yourself, Change the World by Visionary Speaker and Author, Whitney Vosburgh.

In response to a growing call, visionary author and business leader Whitney Vosburgh will be leading two fun, highly interactive weekend workshops in Berkeley, California in August 10-11th and 17-18th.

These workshops will guide you, together with a select number of participants, through the process of awakening to your unique gifts, identifying your “North Star” for a sense of purpose and creating a personalized action-focused pathway that enables you to head into 2020 with enhanced vision and enthusiasm at work and in life.

Each of these two “Change Yourself, Change the World” weekend workshops will take the principles and framework featured in Vosburgh’s two books and provide an immersive experience designed to transform the lives of participants. These inspiring and insightful new books co-authored with Dr. Charlie Grantham — “WORK THE FUTURE! TODAY: Finding your path to purpose, passion and profit” and the accompanying workbook, “WORK THE FUTURE! TODAY 2019 POCKET PAL: A faster path to purpose, passion and profit” — have received praise from a wide spectrum of leaders and readers in the pursuit of regenerative business growth that also provides purpose and meaning.

Sign up soon places are going fast!  Your $300 dollars for this workshop is an investment in your personal growth as well as your career. You will leave with a deeper understanding how to achieve your own preferred work/life balance.

For more information about these workshops, visit: and, and to learn more about Whitney Vosburgh’s “Work The Future! Today” books, visit:

Work the Future Today book and Pocket Pal editions

Enjoy your life and future!

If you can’t attend in August check back at regularly. And, you can buy the books on Amazon or Amazon2

About the Workshop Leaders

Whitney Vosburgh, Change Yourself, Change the World Host

Whitney Vosburgh is co-founder of WORK THE FUTURE! TODAY, a social venture that offers vision, leadership and solutions for maximizing personal, organizational and societal potential, and co-founder of Brand New Purpose, a brand transformation consultancy that creates purpose-built, value-driven opportunities. He is also a consulting Chief Marketing Officer and change agent for Fortune 20 companies and Silicon Valley startups, guiding over $20+ billion worth of M&A, IPOs, sales, pivots and launches. Whitney graduated with an M.A. in Religious Leadership for Social Change from Graduate Theological Union, and with a B.F.A. from Parsons School of Design in New York City. His expertise on the Future of Work has been featured in four books, including a bestseller by Dan Pink, and in “Conscious Company” magazine. When Whitney is not focusing on business consulting, speaking and writing, he can be found making art, which has been exhibited throughout the world. His Tweets can be found at: @brandguru

Marcus Druen, Change Yourself, Change the World Workshop Leader.

Marcus Druen is an expert on individual and business transformation, and has led hundreds of workshops focusing on empowerment and transformation in over 20 countries. His consulting firm, Audacify, is based in the UK. He shares Whitney Vosburgh’s commitment to restore the sense of “shared humanity” to the workplace, at this time when the move to de-personalized “digitization” is proceeding with alarming speed. He also shares the belief that all change begins within each individual. Marcus is a graduate of Cologne Business School.

For more information about these workshops, visit: and, and to learn more about Whitney Vosburgh’s “Work The Future! Today” books, visit:

Keith Okie & Rebel Sol are expanding their national tour.

by Keith Okie
Keith Okie (middle) and Rebel Sol members Jason Teague, and Thomas “Doc” Glendenning

The music of Rebel Sol comes from a deep spiritual desire to shine light and love on the world. Not just your average party band; these guys serve a higher purpose. They know the true power of love and walk through life in awareness of the strength that comes from the musical gifts that have been bestowed upon them.

This vibration shines through in the music. It encourages us to care for one another, to live in harmony with our families and community, to dissolve mental and spiritual boundaries and to break the bonds of conditioning that bind us as individuals and a society.

Rebel Sol reminds us that even after the darkest night, the sun always rises, the light will always shine and that the universe is an infinitely wonderful place.

Upcoming Tour Dates:

SATURDAY JUL. 6, 2019 at the Orpheum Theater in Flagstaff AZ.
Keith Okie & Friends with special guests Zoe and Petey of Kill Babylon Coalition 
“Southwest Acoustic Reggae Showcase” 
Doors at 8 pm 
Show at 9 pm 
$5 at the door  

This is one of the biggest and best local theaters here in northern Arizona. Great spot! They actually sought us out on this one to put a show together for their fourth of July weekend series.

THURSDAY, JUL. 18th, 2019 at the Marquee Theater in Tempe, AZ.
Toots and the Maytals with Keith Okie & Rebel Sol and others.
Doors at 6
Show at 7
$33 (or $20 presales from opening bands)

Toots and the Maytals are one of the all-time greatest reggae bands ever. Toots Hibbert is credited with inventing the word reggae and is one of the most soulful, well-known and prolific artists in reggae history. A real original legend.

SATURDAY, AUG. 24, 2019 at The Hut in Tucson AZ.
E.N. Young with Keith Okie & Rebel Sol and ZeeCeeKeely
Show at 9:30
Rebel Sol set is 10:45 to 11:45  

E.N. Young plays with one of the biggest national reggae bands call Tribal Seeds. He also owns a studio called Imperial Sound and a label called Roots Musician Records. Big player in the national reggae scene. Really good music too. Everyone is excited for this one. 

SATURDAY, OCTOBER 12th Havasu Landing Tribal Reggae Festival
Havasu Landing Resort and Casino (on lake Havasu outside of needles, CA)
Set time and details to follow.

Media Contact: Edie Okamoto at or 510-693-0166
Feel free to contact her for any further information, videos, photos and to schedule interviews.

Keith Okie, spreading love and smiles.

Booking Contact: Keith Okie

Phone- (928)-963-0359

Instagram – @keithokie

World Environment Day reminds us of the reason once a year what we should work on each day.

Whales are endangered due to our careless and feckless behaviors and policies.

So far in the Western United States scientist of the NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) shared more whales than ever have died and washed ashore in California, Oregon, Washington and Alaska. So far 73 whales have washed up. Whales are dying due to malnutrition and it is suspected that the plastics causes indigestion and the microplastics in the water is damaging their organs. Whales are important to the eco balance of the oceans in ways we don’t even understand fully as yet.

Microplastics, which are tiny pieces of plastic, no larger than 5 mm, float around in the fill the water at the Monterey Bay according to Anela Choy. “Our findings buttress a growing body of scientific evidence pointing to the waters and animals of the deep sea, Earth’s largest habitat, as the biggest repository of small plastic debris,” said Anela Choy, the lead author of a study paper by the MBARI.

MBARI’s uses underwater robots to filter plastic particles out of seawater multiple times at two the Monterey Bay and in Moss Landing Harbor at the Pacific Coast of California. The study showed microplastic samples from five to 1,000 meters below the surface. They found identical concentrations of microplastic particles near the surface and in the deepest waters surveyed. However in the mid range, at 200 to 600 meters down, the pollution was 4x higher than at the surface. Shockingly they found that all of the animal specimens they surveyed had internal microplastic.

Bessie Smith tribute by Lavay Smith and Denise Perrier on June 23, 2019 at 3 PM at The Back Room

Divas Denise Perrier and Lavay Smith will perform a Tribute to Bessie Smith and 1920’s Jazz and Blues

Featuring the songs of Bessie Smith and 1920’s Jazz and Blues, with Lavay Smith and Denise Perrier (vocals), Chris Siebert (piano), Pete Devine (drums), Joe Kyle (bass) and Rob Barics (reeds).

Internationally recognized as the finest voices in classic Jazz and Blues, Lavay Smith and Denise Perrier pay tribute to the Jazzy Blues songs of Bessie Smith and the 1920’s. Accompanied by an all-star band that sounds as tight as the legendary musicians they emulate, you’ll think The Back Room was a Roaring ‘20’s speakeasy.

Tickets are $25 and are available at the link below, or you may purchase your tickets at the door the night of the show. Doors open one half hour before show time. We accept cash only at the door (ATMs are nearby). Children under 12 are free. The Back Room is an all-ages, BYOB (for those 21+) space, dedicated to (mostly) acoustic music of all kinds. You are welcome to bring your own adult beverage with no additional corkage fee. If you need more information or have any questions, please call us: #510-654-3808. Thank you for your support!

Misinformation at work! Columbia company hired to influence US politics, but by whom?

There is a new most likely Republican sheriff in town. A group of young Republicans who met during their work at Republican National Committee got together to create the Independent Journal Review, which is owned by

IMGE is a marketing company that provides: “Fresh concepts. Unparalleled execution.” The company provides digital marketing campaigns to troubled companies as for instance Boing, burdened by the shut down of an entire division of planes, due to their lack of quality control. The Republican Governors Association who is suffering from the many problems they have had thanks to being paid off by the Russian Sponsored NRA. John James for Senator campaign who lost against Sen. Debbie Stabenow, D-Mich. The also market on behalf of “Winning for Women.” A non-profit group that seems to be designed to sway the wives of Republican men to vote against their own interests and cruel policies like “Childen in Cages” camouflaged as security. Free Market concepts like eliminating Roe vs Wade, women’s right over their own bodies.

When receiving a facebook post from IJR it was impressive how well edited the newsclip were. I was struck by the partisanship, strung together to cause malaise in potential American voters. The company owned and operated by highly committed Republicans offers IJR red and strangely IJR blue. When reviewing the clips from that point of view it becomes apparent that the blue and the red posts have the same goal. Increasing partisanship, creating uncertainty and strife.

This post is design to turn off African Americans and get them to dislike Biden. And, at the same time have regular Republicans feel terrible about “African Americans.” Goal? Causing strife.

I look at life from both sides now, from here and there…

It would be great if it was genuinely bi-partisan content. Unfortunately it seems designed to increase the separation between different factions in the US – following the strategy of causing hate and deepening divides to serve the small hardcore, rightwing racist misogynists. The only group of people who are fond of the current POTUS.

US Political News made in Colombia, South America, masquerading as an Alexandria, VA based company.
Is it designed for people who want to learn what they already prefer?

It is interesting that the company pretends to be pro democracy but uses the Russian style Kompromat techniques to influence people.

Are we still living in a merit based society?

San Francisco culture of mutual support helped create great opportunities for entrepreneurs to achieve their dreams.

Since before the formation of this country by great men like Benjamin Franklin one of the best parts of living on this continent is that everyone has a chance to create the life they want to have. Benjamin Franklin is a great example of someone who grew up in a modest home, ventured out on his own to become a very wealthy world leader. Self-educated Abe Lincoln is another example of a young half orphan who made his own way in the world, reaching great achievements as a lawyer and US president. Andrew Carnegie was born into a Scottish weaver’s family that shared a one room house with their neighbors. Yet, later in the US he became synonymous with the Gilded Age. John D. Rockefeller who as the son of a con man and a very religious mother started out as a bookkeeper built one of the greatest wealth an American family ever enjoyed. He is quoted as saying: “The growth of a large business is merely a survival of the fittest”. Even though he was a very tough and sometimes ruthless competitor he ended up donating more than $500 million to various philanthropic causes. Back in his days this was quite a lot of money.

In recent history we have Steve Jobs, the son of a Syrian refugee, was adopted and started his career in the warehouse. Ray Kroc started as an ambulance driver at 15 years old and later started McDonald’s corporation, considered one of the fastest growing companies. Sarah Breedlove, later known by one of her married names Madam C. J. Walker’s parents and siblings were slaves, yet she became the first known African American female Millionaire. Andy Grove spent part of his childhood in a Nazi concentration camp and came to the US penniless when he had to flee Hungary from Soviet Oppression at age 20. Later he became associated with the success of Intel, a company he led to international success as its CEO. Arthur Rock’s dad had a candy store and Arthur’s education was possible thanks to the G.I. bill. Arthur Rock founded one of the first investment firms in Silicon Valley, called Davis & Rock. He is considered one of the founders of Silicon Valley. Eric Hippeau received a wonderful education in France and chose to come to the US to achieve his fame and fortune. He came to the US as an ad sales manager for IDG, before becoming publisher of PC Magazine, CEO of Ziff-Davis, Softbank, and now runs a very successful venture firm, Lerer Hippeau.

In the US if you work hard and smart you can succeed. Yes, it is quite clear that in most cases being well educated or rather being able to educate yourself and re-educate yourself is a prerequisite for success. And yes, it possible to reach amazing success in the United States, regardless of background and family ties.

Is it easier to achieve success when you have a loving and supportive family that can afford to pay for a great education and make wonderful introductions? Of course, it is. Is it harder for children who have to overcome the long-term physiological and psychological challenges of ACE (Adverse Childhood Experiences)? Yes, it is harder. However, it is possible. This is what is unique about the USA. Many businesses in the US are merit based, especially in California.

When communities, business leaders, and educational institutions come together to focus on helping kids become successful adults, entire cities and villages thrive. Providing education that provides students with the life-long ability to learn may be one of the top gifts we can give our local communities. Most thriving towns have benevolent leaders who care about all its inhabitants. Why not bring the leaders in your community together to facilitate a local plan to create a thriving and high-quality place to live and grow up in. Amazing success will be up to the individual, luck, hard work, lots of studying, and the willingness to put in the necessary effort. There are no shortcuts to wealth, short of inheriting it. And as every successful business leader knows making the first money is easier than to hold on to the money and growing the business. This takes management skills, knowledge, competitiveness and most importantly content and satisfied customers.

It is best if we remind ourselves and future generations that only because someone else inherited their wealth, doesn’t make them the only ones who can thrive. With a strong desire to succeed, great networking skills, and the willingness to learn, the road to success is open to everyone in the USA. For self-made people there are no short cuts to success. It takes work and diligence, and the willingness to try over and over until the necessary skills are perfected.

In China during the Han Dynasty in the 6th century BC, when Confucius has a strong impact on culture the society was merit-based. Education became the key for social mobility back then in China. Europe opened its mind to become a merit-based society in the 17th Century and is still waffling about it. The US is the only country that was founded on the principles of being merit based. The West Coast naturally has embraced being merit-based since it was founded by people from all walks of life who were seeking fame and fortune in the 19th century during the gold rush era. Life in the Wild West required that towns people were there for each other and pool resources. This spirit of collaboration has survived in California. This is the reason why living is pleasant and easy. There is a “live and let live” attitude, and openness to new and different ways of looking at things, and the willingness to create teams, tribes, mutually beneficial groups, and everyone who is a good fit and is willing to contribute to the overall good is welcome.

Towns who are willing to support their neighbors’ kids thrive more than towns who live in brutally hierarchical ways without caring about each other. Businesses that receive help from financiers are able to afford an educated workforce. These businesses thrive easier. Invest in educating all kids, invest in your towns future. The investment in lifting the overall level of education of a town pays off within 10 to 15 years. It cannot be accomplished within a quarter. However, if you don’t invest in your city, you wil lend up with a ghost town suffering from unhappy, often drugged and depressed workforce who doesn’t work effectively, nor purchase anything. Every town has a chance to adopt these logical and simple principles if leaders choose to come together for the benefit of the entire population. Check out Oakland, CA it is now safer than Kansas City!