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Historian to Publish Detailed Book on the Quander Family, One of America’s Oldest Documented African American Families

in Black Lives Matter
Quander Historical and Educational Society

Historian and retired DC Judge Rohulamin Quander has launched a crowdfunding campaign to publish a detailed book about the Quander Family.

Washington, DC — The Quander Historical and Educational Society Inc. (QHES), led by its founder, author and historian Rohulamin Quander, is raising funds on GoFundMe to underwrite the first publication of a comprehensive, detailed historical account of the internationally known Quander family, one of the oldest documented African American families in the country.

The Quanders trace their lineage almost 350 years to the 1670’s in colonial Maryland. A branch of the family was enslaved by President George Washington at the Mount Vernon Plantation.

Rohulamin has dedicated years researching historical archives in D.C., Maryland, and Virginia, bringing together a broad knowledge and record of the family story, as well as documenting the family’s oral history through which, in part, the family name was traced back to Ghana in West Africa. A recent Emmy Award-winning exposé entitled “I Am Quander” (“Finding Quander“), produced by WUSA-TV 9 (Washington DC) and written and reported by Michael Quander, Jr., explores this journey of reconnection in detail.

Until now, there has been no primary single source encapsulating this fascinating, multi-century story. This narrative will tell the story of the Quanders over the generations, their successes and travails. Here is a family that has produced four U.S. Army generals, three of them West Point graduates; two Tuskegee Airmen serving in World War II, and the first national president of the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. Like many African American families, they have known the despair of involuntary enslavement. This powerful story of perseverance is an inspiration. NOW is the time that the Quander Family’s documented and distinguished history of sustained achievement must be shared with everyone.

As 2019 marks the 400th anniversary of the first captive Africans being sold into slavery in the British North American colony at Jamestown, Virginia, it is important that this poignant, inspiring, expressly American story be told.

Rohulamin Quander is a retired Senior Administrative Judge for the District of Columbia, and a 55-year member of the Omega Psi Phi Fraternity.

The Quander Historical and Educational Society Inc. is a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization based in Washington, D.C. Any financial contribution made to this campaign is tax-deductible.

To support the effort, please visit the online campaign here:

Rohulamin Quander, Founder
Quander Historical and Educational Society Inc.
(202) 487-9922

35+ Black-owned Handbag and Purse Companies to support

in Business Spotlight/Fashion

Ancient Handbags in Stone and Art – Sumerian handbags, Olmec handbags, Maori handbagsEgyptian handbags, Indian handbags and handbags at Gobekli Tepe. Members of the archaeological research community have been left scratching their heads as to the true origin. We’ve compiled a list of our favorite Black-owned handbag/purse brands to support.

Treason Toting Company

Treason Toting Company was founded by Aaron Jones and Jason Bass in 2013 in Baltimore, MD. We met at a bar in Fells Point and became fast friends and business partners over a few glasses of whiskey.


Shanieism is the place to find Pop Art inspired accessories for women

Orchid Noire 

We are a team of enthusiastic purveyors of fine leather craft for travels near and far. As entrepreneurs we decided to collaborate our experience, love for exploration, and passion for travel into this boutique.


Organizational travel and work bags. Heels, lunch, laptop, purse essentials… one bag will do with a MinkeeBlue.


Karina Daniel Paris’s creations include canvas artwork, canvas tote bags, art prints, journals, and greeting cards, all inspired by the women around her. The self-taught artist is based in Brooklyn. Her obsession with all things girly lavishly…


Mifland Leather Goods is an American based mixed accessory goods company with a modern utilitarian approach. Through founder and brand director Tobi Egberongbe’s previous experiences and affinity to design, photography, architecture, contemporary…


iSiibags are handmade handbags and accessories made with iSiibags original fabric designs and a beautiful variety of other fabrics that are sourced. iSiibags makes quality items that are functional,stylish and culturally rooted with bold prints…

Gregory Sylvia 

WE ARE GREGORY SYLVIA. Founded by husband and wife team, Gregory and Terri Sylvia Pope, Gregory Sylvia is a luxury brand of fine handbags and leather goods for the discerning, design-focused consumer.

Double Clutched 

Double Clutched accessories were created to be modern and functional. Most items serve at least two purposes. Wallets can also be used a business card holders, pouches can be used as small clutches or wristlets, clutches can be used as tablet carrier

F&W Style 

F&W Style launched in 2009 as a luxury handbag brand for the fashionable woman. The team researched and discovered there was a void in the market for luxury handbags at an attainable price. F&W Style handbags are made with striking Italian leathers..

Made Leather Company

Founded in 2016 centered around a love for Morocco, MADE Leather Company is a quality driven global brand that produces handmade leather goods for men and women.

Kimberly’s Exclusives

Kimberly’s Exclusives are handmade custom purses designs exclusively for you, or you may shop for our handmade purses at your leisure.

MBellish by Charmega

We are unique in our style. Creating handcrafted ear, neck, and hand wear for your individual style. We are wearable art.

Blended Designs 

Blended Designs offers backpacks and travel backs celebrating the culture.

AlmaRose Bags 

AlmaRose all started as a mission to help prepare a woman for the next big step. It doesn’t matter if you are a first, second or third time mom, this bag (after your baby) is your piece of luxury heaven! Even in the hustle and bustle of stepping…

Eye of the Sun 

Eye of the Sun is a Chicago-based leather bag line by designer Ogechi Anyanwu.


Handmade artisan leather bags and accessories featuring authentic antique and vintage keys and hardware. Handbags, wallets, cuffs, cases, and key fobs for women and men are crafted from premium leather, high quality hardware, and nostalgic vintage…

Jacque M. 528 

Launched March ‘12, the Jacque M. 528 line is composed of luxurious custom designed leather bags and jeans. Martin was inspired by letting the customer’s personality influence the design of the bag, while still maintaining the Jacque M.

Telfar Clemens of Telfar

Telfar Clemens of Telfar is a unisex brand established by Telfar Clemens.

Načelo Boutique 

Načelo Boutique Los Angeles. Online boutique. Affordable, Unique, Trendy.

Adela Dejack



UnoEth (pronounced: ooh-no-eth) is a father-daughter business. Dagne and Xiomara, love to travel and were inspired by their many road trips and international travels to embark on their leather bag and accessories business venture.

Agbara Life

Agbara Life creates highly functional and fashionable powered backpacks that feature a sleek matte black look complemented with gold or silver hardware and triple USB output power to keep you connected while on the go.

Sarep + Rose

Sometime around 2010, Robin was gifted a striped leather and cotton drawstring bag from her Grandma, made somewhere in West Africa. She was hardly ever seen without this bag and she was routinely asked where they could be bought.

Meme Bete

House of Moruka

Thank you so much for visiting House of Moruka. First off, my name is Julian Gravesande & I’m from Linden, Guyana, South America. Handbags, clutches, jewelry, accessories

Hideoki Bespoke

Born of traditional craftsmanship, infused with an innovative style, and personalized to express the client’s individuality, a Hideoki Bespoke garment enhances every client’s lifestyle.

Posh Totes


Luxury apparel and leather accessories produced in Ethiopia.

Love Cortnie

I started Love,Cortnie on a whim. I’ve always thought of the type of oversized clutch I would love to buy. The only problem was that I could never find any.

Love Farai

In our efforts to reduce over-production and garment waste each product developed is well thought out, highly constructed, & has you & your lifestyle in mind. We choose quality & creativity over trend, so that your item can be used for many seasons…

Janelle Ford Studio

Fierce, fly and flamboyant are just a few words used to capture the essence and style of the uniquely designed collection of Janelle Ford handbags. Sophisticated women sporting conservative suits, creative women who prefer a casually chic flair…

Melanin Flavored

Melanin Flavored seeks to create apparel, accessories and other products that accentuate and unite African-American women, focusing on the celebration of hair preferences and differences.

Diligent Hands Wooden Purses and Accessories

Diligent Hands Wooden Purses and Accessories is a unique line of hand-burned wooden purses and accessories that boast hand-painted accents and decorative graphics. Specializing in customized handiwork, Diligent Hands can take your personal…

Christopher Augmon

Noir Girl Magic

In the space of innate desire to reflect our Black culture beyond our skin even when we travel, Noir Girl Magic™ was shaped. Globetrotting Black folk in small groups do stand out when traveling internationally outside of Africa.

Magic Johnson Joins Ice Cube’s Bidding Group To Acquire Sports Networks From Disney

in Entrepreneurs/Finance
entrepreneur O’Shea “Ice Cube” Jackson Sr.

Rapper, actor, and entrepreneur O’Shea “Ice Cube” Jackson Sr. announced Wednesday that Magic Johnson has joined his underdog bid to acquire 21 regional sports networks (RSN) from Walt Disney Co. “Very happy to add Magic Johnson to our bidding group for Disney’s RSNs,” wrote Jackson in a tweet.

Jackson has placed a bid to buy the RSNs through his 3-on-3 basketball league, Big3, which he founded in partnership with entertainment executive Jeff Kwatinetz in 2017. The traveling summer league gives former NBA stars the opportunity to compete in half court 3-on-3 games while offering sports fans a cherished moment of nostalgia. Should he win the bid, Jackson plans to air content from celebrities and athletes such as Snoop Dogg, Serena Williams, and Will Smith, who has also joined the project.

As of now, it has not been confirmed whether Johnson, who abruptly stepped down as president of the Los Angeles Lakers earlier this month, will be lending financial support to the effort.

The regional sports network airs Detroit Tigers, Pistons, and Red Wings games, along with 21 sister stations. The local networks have been for sale as part of The Walt Disney Co.’s acquisition of 21st Century Fox’s entertainment assets. According to the Los Angeles Times:

Disney agreed to sell the sports networks to get clearance for its $71-billion takeover of 21st Century Fox Inc.’s entertainment empire, a transaction that closed last month. Regulators were concerned that Disney would have too much control over sports television if it owned both ESPN and the regional broadcasters. Disney has to sell the networks within 90 days of the Fox deal’s completion on March 19.

In addition to Big3, other offers in the final-round bids for the sports networks have been submitted by telecom billionaire John Malone and his Liberty Media Corp. in partnership with Major League Baseball along with the Sinclair Broadcast Group Inc. All offers are reportedly in the neighborhood of $10 billion.

Darius Cooks Releases Vegan Cookbook

in Food & Drinks
Darius Cooks

The famous chef, Darius Cooks, releases his new cookbook Vegan BUT WITH SOUL that has soulful plant-based recipes that are quick, simple, and fun!. This cookbook features some of your favorite items that you love but are vegan. He includes breakfast, lunch, dinner, dessert, and pastas so you can have all types of choices. Some of these food options are the collard green gumbo with hot water cornbread, lemon pepper honey fried cauliflower, cognac & orange scented french toast, slow roasted plantains with hot honey rum butter and many more.

Whether you are looking to eat healthy or transition to a vegan lifestlye, this cookbook is for you. To purchase a cookbook click here.

Meet 7 Black Midwives Working To Make Birth Better For Us

in Black Lives Matter/Health & Beauty
Photo credit:

These Black Midwives Want To Change The Statistics One Birth At A Time.

Black women are taking control of the narrative around the Black maternal health crisis.  

The numbers are so staggering they’ve made national news many times over. We know them by heartbreak: Black women are 3-4x more likely to die from childbirth and pregnancy-related causes, and Black infants are 2.2x more likely to die than their white counterparts.

We know the problem, but what’s being done about it? Black Mamas Matter Alliance is an organization that’s working to change policy and shift the culture around Black moms and maternal health outcome. There’s the inspiring news that there’s now a Black Maternal Health Caucus (because Black women get things done).

And then there are a group of women who are working with pregnant people in their communities to give them the empowered birth experiences they deserve and that should be their right: I’m talking about Black midwives and doulas.

Now, only “10% of U.S. births involve midwives, far behind other industrialized countries, where midwives participate in half or more of all deliveries,” according to ScienceDaily. But midwifery used to be a part of everyday life for centuries. Women like South Carolinian Maude Callen provided access to healthcare to thousands of people in their communities before the medical community lobbied to make midwifery nearly obsolete.

It’s taken a crisis to bring us back to this ancestral knowledge. Having access to midwifery care has been linked to improved birth outcomes for Black women and their children. Though “fewer than 2% of midwives in the United States are Black,” writes journalist Dani McClain In her book We Live for the We: The Political Power of Black Motherhood, there is a rise in Black women becoming midwives and that will hopefully boost that number. And there’s a number of state and federal legislation in the works to make midwifery care fall under the services Medicare covers.

Although every birth won’t have a midwife catching the baby, all birthing people can benefit from the call to safe, respectful, and empowered births this group of birth workers is advocating for.

I asked seven Black midwives and midwives-in-training to share how they came to midwifery. Here are their stories.

I was born at home and had been passively exposed to the care that midwives give for pregnancy and birth throughout my childhood, but it was not always my dream. I knew that becoming a doctor was not my calling and did many other things before I was reintroduced to midwifery. I worked in nonprofit housing, studied herbal healing and African spiritualities, and was even a high-school teacher in NYC before I decided to become a midwife.

When a friend was planning a home birth, she introduced me to her midwife who became my mentor. It took many months of research and discussing with other midwives for me to even figure out the whats and hows. I learned that midwives could care for women for a whole range of things, including regular gynecological care, birth control, and some even provide abortion services.

Eventually, I decided that the path of nurse-midwifery was best for my family and me. From a career perspective, I had a longing to be a in a field where I got to do a few specific things: 1) be a guide to women seeking health and wellness; 2) be a voice in support of personal empowerment through the major biological life moments that change our lives; and 3) call upon the deep use of my heart, hands, spirit, and intellect.

I began taking courses to apply for nursing school and became pregnant with my first child during that time. I fell in love with the journey of being a mother, which added another layer of meaning to my studies. I also got to spend time learning about the histories of Black midwifery and nursing in the South, which made me feel a palpable sense of pride. When I was finally in a position to apply for graduate school, I had also made a major pivot in my life and work into advocacy for families with a strong focus on breastfeeding.

My midwifery care is informed by a unshakable belief in the power of women and in an understanding of how intersecting social forces can come to bear on the lives of the families I serve. It is about holding space for women to be heard and remember their power as well as about providing healthcare and being a public advocate. So, this is a long way of saying that I wanted to become a midwife because it feels like a pure expression and practice of creating the world and future I want to see for women.

As otherworldly as this may seem, I was first led to midwifery as a newborn and through divination: My parents were told that I was destined to become a midwife.

Over the course of my young life, my family forgot about this specific declaration and midwifery reintroduced itself to me through the work of a family friend. Her journey into the profession sparked my interest. I was able to learn and attend a home birth, which helped to solidify my desire to become a midwife.

I eventually went to nursing school and became a nurse on a labor and delivery unit. After awhile the babies kept birthing themselves under my care and that was when I realized that it was time for me to transition from nurse to midwife.

Although the spiritual undercurrent of midwifery plays a huge factor in my life, midwifery is a practice and concept that I am still learning and building upon every day. The more I expose myself to the work of other birthworkers and scholars, the more my thoughts about midwifery evolve and expand for the better.

For me, there is something innately radical and revolutionary about being a midwife. The humanistic act of listening, being present, and holding space for others seems rather simple but has been proven to have profound effects in the healthcare setting. In a society where specific individuals are marginalized for various reasons, midwifery acts as a buffer saving many from experiencing feelings of neglect, coercion, and abuse by the larger medical system. In an effort to redefine birth, to reclaim the legacy of the traditional black midwife, and to treat others as whole human beings, I embrace the role of the midwife.


Silver Spring, Maryland

View more…

HBCU Grad Returns with First Ever Adult Coloring Book Celebrating Black Colleges

in Art/Business Spotlight/Featured Business/Lifestyle
Entrepreneurs Color Too,

The perfect graduation gift for her!

We promote self care for creatives and entrepreneurs through coloring! Together we are bridging the gap between coloring books and culture!

Nationwide — Latoya Nicole, bestselling author and owner of Entrepreneurs Color Too, is back with the release of her newest edition Alma Mater and it’s just in time for graduation! The coloring book is full of highlights that showcase the Black College Experience including its education, diversity and culture. The illustrations are inspired by beautiful Black women and range from Greek life and the Royal Court to STEM and science labs. It even includes activities that test your HBCU knowledge.

“I couldn’t be more excited to release this book,” says Latoya. “I’ve been so humbled by the response thus far and the overwhelming interest.”

When asked what inspired her to create Alma Mater, Latoya replied, “My godmother, who recently passed away, was an advocate for education and we share the philosophy that HBCUs are an important part of history. As an ode to her I wanted to create something that not only promoted education but also captured the spirit of Black Colleges in an artistic manner. It’s also a way to celebrate the people I see in my community, help women practice self care and pay homage to my own Alma Mater, Winston Salem State University.”

The book is great therapy for women and it’s a great way to help students de-stress! Sometimes we just need to unwind, unplug, and relax and coloring can help with that. You can color by yourself or even have fun celebrating a girls’ night out by having a coloring party!

About Entrepreneurs Color Too:
Entrepreneurs Color Too is a coloring book series that gives women of color a new method to relieve stress on the go, at the office, or even at home. Other books in the series include 80’s Ladies which features fashion trends from the 80’s and 90’s, and 24 Shades of Business which is filled with 24 inspiring illustrations of Black women in various occupations from CEO to a yoga instructor. The books have already sold thousands of copies and their first book 24 Shades of Business was even endorsed by O, The Oprah Magazine which recently published an article highlighting the significance of adult coloring books in the lives of people who have to face stress and anxiety on a daily basis.

Alma Mater is available for purchase on Amazon. For additional information, please visit

About the author:
Latoya Nicole is a bestselling author, publisher and social entrepreneur. She is from Raleigh, North Carolina and has received a Master’s Degree in Counseling/Psychology. She is creating her own lane while bridging the gap between coloring books and black culture! Her books have been featured in Curly Nikki, Black Enterprise, Madame Noire, Official Black Wall Street and more. Being passionate about uplifting females in the community she also teaches emerging entrepreneurs how to start and market their online businesses. Find her at or follow her on Facebook and Instagram.

Entrepreneurs Color Too

Meet the ‘Doctor’ Who Helps Black Entrepreneurs Go Viral

in Business Spotlight/Entrepreneurs

Nationwide — Dante Lee is not a medical doctor, but he is known and well-respected as a Revenue Doctor™. That’s because he is a marketing genius and PR mastermind that helps  entrepreneurs promote their businesses and go viral on social media. In some cases, he has been able to help entrepreneurs receive up to 1 million shares and likes on Facebook – which has translated into hundreds of thousands of dollars in revenue for their brands.

Marketing a business is not easy, but Lee has created a unique press release distribution service called that helps entrepreneurs get their stories published in various Black newspapers, magazines, and blogs across the country. The service also helps them get potential interviews on radio and TV stations that predominantly Black audiences.

“African Americans have an annual buying power of $1 trillion dollars,” Dante says. “But there are very few affordable services that help marketers reach these consumers. What I’ve created helps small business owners affordably and effectively reach this market.”

Lee started his company almost 20 years ago back in the year 2000, and has grown the company significantly to also include various popular news sites (like and where he also features his client’s stories. He also has a huge presence on social media, and is an active contributor to several popular Facebook groups that are frequented by thousands of African American influencers.

Here are just a few stories that have gone viral thanks to Lee’s work:

• Yes, Black Women Own Trucking Companies Too!
(More than 200,000 shares and likes on social media)

• From Homeless and Incarcerated to Becoming a Super Chef That Owns Three Restaurants!
(More than 1.2 million shares and likes on social media)

• Introducing Brooklyn’s Newest Black-Owned Urgent Care Center
(More than 120,000 shares and likes on social media)

• Black Family-Owned Vegan Restaurant, Green Love Kitchen, Celebrates Grand Reopening in Atlanta Area
(More than 52,000 shares and likes on social media)

• Black-Owned Mobile Barber Shop is Just Like Uber, But For Haircuts!
(More than 400,000 shares and likes on social media)

• 18-Year Old Teen Entrepreneur Signs Major Deal With Target Stores – Introduces Plant-Based Skincare Giftbox!
(More than 160,000 shares and likes on social media)

Lee says that he calls himself a Revenue Doctor™ because he loves to share business ‘health’ advice. “My goal is to help ‘sick’ and ‘ailing’ businesses generate ‘healthy’ profits,” he comments. “I also can help rejuvenate ‘dying’ web sites, and I like to work hands-on with my clients so that I can craft their story in the best way possible, giving them the absolute best possible chance of going viral.”

Lee also shares valuable business advice everyday via his personal Facebook page, where he also personally responds to messages sent to him via messenger. Those who are interested in his services and his free advice should follow him at

Black Author Who Lost 100 Pounds and Beat Depression Launches New Book and Mobile App to Help Others

in Black Lives Matter/Education/Lifestyle/Mental Health/News
Dakota Jack, also known as a ‘goal-digger’

Dakota Jack, also known as a ‘goal-digger’ is a contemporary author that inspires us to achieve our little goals first through her new book – and soon, through her mobile app!

Atlanta, GA — Got goals? Of course, you do! Whether you desire to lose weight, write a book, start a business, or anything in between, this book will inspire you to get it done! Dakota Jack, author of My 4 for 40, is helping motivate everyday people to do better, be better and improve their overall quality of life – forty days at a time!

Having battled depression for years, Dakota is brazenly familiar with the bitter side effects an unfulfilled life can bring. Fortunately, she discovered the overflowing joy that comes with having a sense of accomplishment – and a sense of purpose. Ever since Dakota started checking off a daily list of small goals, her life has positively changed. She can’t stop celebrating!

The plan/program Dakota created was simple. It focused on whole self-improvement, through goal setting and check lists; with a special emphasis on the number “4”. The results Dakota obtained, after just forty days, were astounding. Not only did she get within short reach of her primary weight loss goal, but she achieved so much more. The My 4 for 40™ plan infused Dakota’s life with success. It can do the same for you!

To take things to the next level, Dakota started working on a mobile application that would help users maintain focus and motivation, in order to continuously achieve short-term goals; using the My 4 for 40™ concept. Potential investors have already expressed interest! Hopefully, this life-enhancing mobile app will be available to the public soon.

Jack has also committed to funding four full scholarships to HBCUs, if the My 4 for 40 book sells more than 400,000 copies. Additionally, 4% of the 2019 profits from his book are being donated to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.

“On the surface, I’m just another non-degreed, working-class, single mother of two. However, underneath that layer, I’m a goal digger – and I’m not ashamed to admit it.” – Dakota Jack

Dakota Jack is an intriguing, contemporary author from Atlanta, Georgia. She wrote and self-published her first book in 2012, entitled, I’m Not Pregnant, I’m Just Fat…Defeating Depression and Daring to Dream. Originally, the title was published under her birth name, Dedral Treadwell. It was later republished, in 2017, under the pseudonym – Dakota Jack. Within her debut memoir, Dakota revealed painful things about herself, most probably wouldn’t. She was refreshingly bold and transparent.

Learn more about Dakota Jack at

Learn more about the My 4 for 40™ plan at

Dakota Jack

Akon Wants African Actors Cast in ‘Coming to America’ Sequel

in Africa/Celebrity/Entertainment
Akon Wants African Actors Cast in ‘Coming to America’ Sequel

“They should cast some African comedians and African actors because the film industry in Africa is huge.”

ByChristina Santi

Akon is anticipating the release of Coming to America 2, the sequel to the 1988 film starring Eddie Murphy as a prince from the fictional African country Zamunda looking for love in Queens, New York. The Senegalese singer says this time around, African actors and comedians should have roles in the movie.

During an interview with TMZ on Wednesday, Akon commended the original movie as “one of the most amazing comedy films ever.” He also applauded Murphy for enlisting Black Panther costume designer Ruth Carter for the upcoming film, because the 2018 global juggernaut piqued people’s interest in the vast continent.

However, Akon said that he would like to see more African talent cast in roles for the sequel. 

“I love that they’re using the Black Panther concept—it opened up a whole other avenue for people who want to be more educated on Africa,” the artist/producer/philanthropist explained. “One thing I would recommend though, although I haven’t seen the casting yet, they should cast some African comedians and African actors because the film industry in Africa is huge, it’s one of the biggest in the world.” 

The artist/producer/philanthropist said comedian Michael Blackson, who is Ghanaian, would be a perfect fit for the film because he is known in the motherland and in the United States. 

After more than 30 years, Murphy confirmed the news of the Coming to America follow-up in January. The comedian will produce the sequel along with Kevin Misher. Black-ish creator Kenya Barris is the executive producer and will rewrite a script for the sequel, which was crafted by Coming to America writers Barry Blaustein and David Sheffield. 

A New Home for the Young, Gifted and Black in Brooklyn NYC

in Art/Education/Lifestyle
Young, Gifted and Black in Brooklyn NYC

Nationwide — Although Manhattan has been a mecca for young Black artists cultivating their craft since the dawn of the Harlem Renaissance, there came a time for the starved outer-boroughs to rise to the occasion.

Brooklyn continues to inspire its own pilgrimage with the Williamsburg Music Center, a Black-owned musician-run venue, by hosting a month-long concert series this April titled “Young, Gifted and Black (YGNB).”

Given the the scarcity of bridges between Black creatives and Brooklyn’s locals and MTA’s L train tease from hell (will they or won’t they?), the YGNB series became a necessary response to both.

If one were to have a look at Time Out’s list of 14 Best Live Music Venues in NYC, only six are in Brooklyn, and of those six, a only four dare to house music that isn’t indie-rock, electronic, funk or some eclectic mix of them all. If you were to digg futher, when it comes to the magazine’s roundup of the 14 Best Jazz Clubs in NYC, a measly two hail from this borough.

The YGNB concert is not just a call to action in the face of this shortage but also, a platform for the Black American Music community. The tradition of music can only be perpetuated by homes where creatives and crowds can both stoke the fire and bask in its warmth.

It is only fitting that the curator of the concert, Jonathan Michel, followed in the footsteps of Gerry Eastman, founder of Williamsburg Music Center, as a watchman for this tradition.

The YGNG will put on a series of events commencing April 4th, 2019 and continues once a week, every week, until April 25th, 2019.

The aim is to explore a complete cultural experience and showcase our up and coming young talent.

Here are some of the things you can look forward to:

• Endea Owens & The Cookout – A Detroit native and recipient for Jazz at Lincoln Center’s 2019 Emerging Artist Award, will open the program. Owens will bring her project ‘The Cookout’ to YGNB on April 4th.

• Christopher McBride & The Whole Proof – The 11th will see the host of ‘Singer Meets Saxophonist’, Christopher McBride, as he is graciously accompanied by his project ‘The Whole Proof’. He is a composer, arranger, and educator.

• Willerm Delisfort – One of New York’s most in-demand pianists and will grace the stage with his group, ‘The Willerm Delisfort Project’, on April 18th.

The series will end on April 25th, with 2019 Lakou Nou Artist in Residence and YGNB curator himself, Jonathan Michel, as he presents his ‘80’s Born, 90’s Bred’ project.

Sets from DJ Salenta the Selecta will weave through the live performances each week. Salenta Baisden is the CEO and Founder of The Push, an event production company working to light up the stage of underground artists. Her eclectic taste, Los Angeles nativity and service to the music community at The Push puts her in the ranks of Eastman and Michel as she uplifts the YGNB stage with unique flair.

For more details, visit the Williamsburg Music Center at 367 Bedford Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11211 or learn more online at

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