Director Interview: Charles Randolph Wright talks “Motown the Musical”

Interview & written by: Melody Charles “The Sound of Young America.” It’s a legendary story that the world now recognizes as one part ambition, two parts ingenuity and multiple parts soul—–the creation of Motown Records. With a few hit songs to his credit, an $800 loan and a vision of success, Berry Gordy Jr. took […]

“I Am Charlie Wilson” – The Gap Band, despair, addiction and back. Interview with the Soul singer on his upcoming memoir and the life that’s filled its pages

…..”Give me a hit,” I croaked into her ear, sure I could score a little something from her out there on the street. “I’m clean, Charlie. Have been for three years,” [my cousin Shirley] said, her voice cracking. “Three years?” I yelled…..While I contemplated the thought, Shirley started to full-on cry, her face contorted, tears leaving streaks […]

Book Review: “For Your Love” by Beverly Jenkins – Explosive secrets that resurrects old drama and new pain

Title: FOR YOUR LOVE Author: Beverly Jenkins 295 of pages (William Morrow / HarperCollins) “Cradling the shotgun, she bent down to get a look at him, and that’s when he rose up and crashed the pipe across her shoulder. She cried out and fell to her knees, dropping the gun. While she slumped, moaned in […]

Actor Interview: Stan Houston on his role in “Selma” and why he almost walked away from it

Written by: Melody Charles It’s rare to get a memorable acting part in a relatively new acting career, much less one with other certified superstars and singled-out early on for being worthy of an Academy Award, but that’s what STAN HOUSTON has accomplished. Atlanta, GA native with both independent and major project roles to his […]

Author Interview: Ilyasah Shabazz on her latest literary work – “X, a Novel”

Photo credit: ILYASAHSHABAZZ.COM “Smoke everywhere. In the air, by the door, at the windows—- in our very bed, it seemed. Hot and dark, choking. Someone’s hands on me, dragging me up, then down. Stumbling over floorboards and furniture. Scooped up into strong arms. The first breath of cool, fresh night. We watched the house burn […]

CD Review: Christmas Anthony Hamilton Style…”Home for the Holidays” invokes the feel and comfort of home

Album review by: Melody Charles Pot liquor, smoked neck-bones, gravy puddled on a plate that you sop up with a biscuit: those flavors invoke the feel and comfort of home and that’s what I feel when I hear the voice of Anthony Hamilton. Seriously—-his voice is the truth.  Ever since the late 90s, the NC native’s gritty […]

Book Review: “The Pleasure Trap” by Niobia Bryant

The Pleasure Trap, by Niobia Bryant 264 pages, Dafina Books/Kensington Publishing Book Review by: Melody Charles Graham Walker might be his name, but pleasure becomes his game….literally AND figuratively. First introduced in Niobia Bryant’s scandal-driven Mistress series (Message From A Mistress, Mistress No More and Mistress Inc.) via his trysts with Jaime Hall, male stripper […]

Author Interview: Niobia Bryant on her compelling characters, searing street scenarios and erotic interludes

Written by: Melody Charles No matter what nom de plume readers may find on the cover—Niobia Bryant, Simone Bryant or Meesha Mink—fans already know that the contents are going to be a scintillating read. Ever since her 2000 debut Admission of Love, the New Jersey native has created some of the most compelling characters, searing […]

Music Interview: Singer / Songwriter Ledisi’s – Courage, confidence, trial and transformation

Written by: Melody Charles Courage, confidence, trial and transformation: in the nearly three years since her last album Pieces Of Me, singer and songwriter Ledisi Young has experienced growth and loss. Getting good with herself dovetailed with leaving a long-term relationship, but instead of secluding herself to the shadows and licking her wounds, the eight-time Grammy […]

Music Interview: Guitarist Mark Letteri of ‘Snarky Puppy’ on the recent Grammy win and working with Lalah Hathaway

Written by: Melody Charles If you’ve been a part of the re-emerging  30+ live music scene in Dallas, TX over the last few years, chances are you’ve heard—or seen—the long, lean guitar-wielding machine known as Mark Letteri. Ahem…make that the Grammy Award-winning guitarist, composer and producer Mark Letteri. For years the Ft. Worth, TX-based performer […]