10 Jan The Music Biz Rolls In the New Year With Good News of Justice, Collaboration, Generosity, Health, Transformation, and ANSWERS!
JORDIN SPARKS AND JOHN LEGEND COLLABORATION
There are approximately 225 juveniles in California serving a life without parole sentence. California has the worst racial disparity rate in the nation for sentencing juveniles to life without parole. Black youth are given this sentence at 22 times the rate of white youth. A number of California cases have recently been highlighted in the media due to the background of the juveniles who received the sentences, and the circumstances surrounding their crimes. One such case involves Sara Kruzan, now 32. She was raised in Riverside by her abusive, drug-addicted mother. Sara met her father only three times in her life because he was in prison.
Since the age of 9, Sara suffered from severe depression for which she was hospitalized several times. At the age of 11, she met a 31-year-old man named G.G. who molested her and began grooming her to become a prostitute. At age 13, she began working as a child prostitute for G.G. and was repeatedly molested by him. At age 16, Sara was convicted of ambushing and killing her former pimp in a Southern California motel room. She was sentenced to prison for the rest of her life despite her background and a finding by the California Youth Authority that she was amendable to treatment offered in the juvenile system. Her clemency petition cited years of abuse and psychiatric reports saying she suffered from battered women’s syndrome.
On Sunday, Jan. 2, 2011 Governor Schwarzenegger commuted Kruzan’s sentence to 25 years to life in prison with the possibility of parole, calling her life sentence “excessive”. Governor Schwarzenegger left office on Monday. As one of her mentors noted, perhaps her case will serve as the catalyst for doing away with the barbaric treatment of minors when it comes to incarcerating them.
EMINEM KICKS OFF 2011 GRAMMY COMMERCIALS
Eminem had a remarkable music career during 2010 so it comes as no surprise that the Recording Academy would tap the Detroit rapper to spearhead the organization’s Music Is Life Is Music social-networking and promotional campaign. In the 30-second ad, viewers are taken on an illustrated journey through Marshall Mathers’ life. Traveling through the ‘Recovery’ rhymer’s 8 Mile trailer park, an announcer proclaims, “Music is a last chance, a last hope, a last shot. Music is turning demons into demos into multiplatinum monsters.” Images of a notebook with scribbled lyrics appear as Em’s ‘Not Afraid’ serves as the spot’s soundtrack. Even the darker aspects of the rapper’s days are highlighted, with newspaper clippings detailing his arrests and divorce popping up throughout. Eminem’s commercial is the first of three that will be airing in support of the 53rd Annual Grammy Awards.
ANSWERS: MICHAEL’S DOCTOR HAD EMPLOYEES STASH EVIDENCE
In day two of the pre-trial hearings for Michael Jackson’s personal physician Dr. Conrad Murray, a bodyguard told the court that the doctor instructed him to help confiscate medical paraphernalia from the singer’s bedroom on the morning he was pronounced dead. Alberto Alvarez said he walked into Jackson’s bedroom that morning to see Murray giving the King of Pop CPR with one hand. Murray then told Alvarez to place vials and an IV drip bag containing an opaque substance into separate plastic bags that were later put into a brown canvas bag. An estimated 20 minutes passed from the time Murray found Jackson lifeless until a call to paramedics was placed. Alvarez said he did not know what happened to the bags.
TRANSFORMATION: RAVEN SHRINKS SIZES
If there’s one thing Raven-Symoné never lacked, it’s self-assurance. The 25 year old, who once contently called herself “thick and fabulous,” showed off a decidedly slimmer look at Wednesday’s People’s Choice Awards. Strutting her stuff in a cleavage-bearing, all-black leather ensemble with thigh-high Louboutin boots, Symoné says she was never one to consider herself unattractive when she was still heavy. “I thought I looked fabulous before and nobody else did,” she says. “So, whatever.” Symoné is not yet comfortable with her new look. “Actually, now I wear bigger clothes because I don’t like the way people stare at me,” she says. “I liked it before. Now, you’re just looking at me for the wrong reasons. Before, you were actually looking at me for a real reason.
NICK BUYS MARIAH A $400,000 PHANTOM
Well Damn! Nick Cannon drives around Hollywood in a white Phantom, now Mariah has one too. Looks like Mariah Carey and her soon-to-be-born twins will be cruising around LA in style … thanks to hubby Nick Cannon. The 30-year-old bought his pregnant wife a Rolls Royce Phantom for Christmas. And apparently it has personalized license plates too. A Phantom will set you back around $400 thousand. Not bad for only being married two years.
Yesterday marked the birthday of Tony Rock’s father who died from complications due to diabetes. If you’re not aware diabetes is a silent killer in the Black community. After losing his father from health issues caused by diabetes complications, Tony understands the significant impact of this disease. His MyROCK foundation sponsors annual events in New York and California that include fundraising, awareness & prevention programs, and family building activities.