8 Things to Know About Octomom

By: Megan Montgomery

LOS ANGELES (AP/UTC The Loop) — Much has transpired since Nadya Suleman became “Octomom” by giving birth to eight premature but otherwise healthy children on Jan. 26, 2009. She’s gone from medical marvel — hers are the only known full set of octuplets to live past their first week — to national punch line for her various money-generating efforts

The 38-year-old single mother of 14 children (she had six before the octuplets) has been a porn actress, nude model, celebrity boxer and birth-control pitchwoman as she’s struggled to support herself and her children. She’s lost a home to foreclosure, teetered on the brink of bankruptcy and fought with nannies and others who tried to help her, leaving in her wake a string of publicists, lawyers and good-Samaritan types who no longer want to talk about her.

Suleman was back in the headlines earlier this month when she was charged with welfare fraud. She pleaded not guilty and is free on her own recognizance pending a pretrial hearing next month.

Despite all the attention she’s generated, Suleman has kept her octuplets largely out of the public eye and shared little about them. As they turn 5, here are eight things to knowabout “Octomom:”

1271778107_nayda-290

Octomon with her children after they were born in 2009

1) BEFORE SHE WAS OCTOMOM: Suleman worked for a state mental hospital in 1999 when she said she suffered a back injury during an inmate riot. She went on to collect more than $165,000 in disability payments and used some of the money to help pay for in-vitro fertilization treatments that produced her first six children. She has a bachelor’s degree in child and adolescent development from California State University, Fullerton, and was studying for a master’s in counseling when she became pregnant with the octuplets.

2) THE DOCTOR: All 14 of Suleman’s children were born through IVF treatments provided by Beverly Hills physician Dr. Michael Kamrava. He faced harsh criticism when it was learned he implanted 12 embryos that resulted in the octuplets. Medical guidelines recommend no more than two embryos. Kamrava said he was trying to please an insistent patient. The California Medical Board revoked his license, citing gross negligence.

3) NAME GAMES: Suleman picked Biblical names for all eight of her octuplets: Noah, Jonah, Jeremiah, Josiah, Isaiah, Makai, Nariyah and Maliyah. All have the same middle name, Angel. No explanation was given for why Suleman chose to spell their last names Solomon. But then no explanation was given for why she altered her own first name from Natalie to Nadya, something discovered only this month when she was charged.

4) SHE SUPPORTS BIRTH CONTROL — FOR DOGS AND CATS: In 2010 People For the Ethical Treatment of Animals paid Suleman $5,000 to endorse spaying and neutering for pets. The organization also provided a month’s supply of vegetarian hot dogs and hamburgers.

5) CELEBRITY BOXING STAR: Suleman launched a short-lived boxing career in 2011, explaining she was stepping into the ring with a string of D-List celebrities because she was broke. Her opponents included “Long Island Lolita” Amy Fisher, who became famous for shooting her much older lover’s wife in the face in 1992. Suleman won decisions over Fisher and a Florida bartender, but took a pounding from Philadelphia radio personality Jen Posner, though the referee ruled the bout a draw.

6) ON THE MOVE: The house Suleman bought after the birth of her octuplets was put on the auction block in 2012 after she defaulted on a loan. She tried to save it by filing for bankruptcy but a judge dismissed the case when she never completed the paperwork. She has gone on to live in rental houses.

7) AWARD-WINNING ACTRESS: Suleman’s porn video, “Octomom Home Alone,” won the 2013 AVN Award for Best Celebrity Sex Tape, the adult film industry’s equivalent of an Oscar.

8) WHO’S THE FATHER? Suleman, who was married from 1996 to 2008, has never publicly identified the father of any of her children. She has said it wasn’t her ex-husband, but a friend who donated the sperm used to create the 60 embryos that authorities say Kamrava implanted in her over the years.

 

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Print Friendly

Southern Baptist Leaders To Host Nashville Sex Summit

By: Kelli Findlay

Nashville, Tennessee (AP/Theloop) – Southern Baptist Convention leaders are hosting a summit in Nashville that will focus on sex. The topics will range from pornography, teen sex, homosexuality and how pastors can talk to their congregations about human sexuality. Russell Moore, Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission president for the Southern Baptist Convention, said the summit’s theme is a timely one. “So many of the questions that pastors grapple with today deal with situations that would not even have been possible a generation ago,” Moore said in a press statement.

Convention being held April 2014

Convention about sex and pornography being held April 2014

“As technology advances and the culture changes, the questions that we have to grapple with are often increasingly complex.”

Panel topics include discussions on the gospel and homosexuality and the gospel and ministry in a sex-saturated world. The sessions will also focus on how the “gospel shapes a person’s sexual identity, redeems sexual desire and sets free people held captive by sin.”

The summit will be held from April 21-23. The event’s main sessions will be streamed live on the Web for people who cannot attend.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Print Friendly

Hostess with the Most-est; Amy Poehler and Tina Fey at The Golden Globes

 

By: Emily Noey

LOS ANGELOS (AP/UTC The Loop)- Tina Fey and Amy Poehler took the gold again.

For a second year, these funny ladies were the most-est as co-hosts of NBC’s Golden Globes party.

Fey explained their return engagement by noting, “This is Hollywood, and if something kind of works they’ll just keep doing it until everybody hates it.”

tina-fey-amy-poehler-golden-globes-2013-gi

While Poehler and Fey set the perfect irreverent tone for the Globes and its party-hearty tradition, the three-hour live broadcast from Beverly Hills, Calif., was remarkably well-behaved.

Not these returnees, who again presided with seeming effortless sass and hardly a joke off-target. During their shared opening routine, Fey’s zinger about George Clooney and his penchant for dating younger women may have been the most riotously received wisecrack in recent awards-cast history.

While Poehler and Fey set the perfect irreverent tone for the Globes and its party-hearty tradition, the three-hour live broadcast from Beverly Hills, Calif., was remarkably well-behaved.

Emma Thompson played up the Globes’ boozy reputation by arriving on stage barefoot to present the screenplay award in very non-Emmy, non-Oscar style, with her Christian Louboutin high heels in one hand, her martini in the other.

“I just want you to know, this red,” she declared, pointing to the shoes’ trademark red soles before tossing them over her shoulder, “it’s my blood.”

But her display was clearly all in fun.

A few impolite words did erupt. Winning as best actress for her miniseries “Top of the Lake,” Elisabeth Moss blurted out one of them. It was efficiently bleeped.

But whoever was tending the button miscalculated big time with Jacqueline Bisset.

Accepting her trophy as best supporting actress for the miniseries “Dancing on the Edge,” the clearly surprised Bisset voiced a lengthy, rambling acceptance that triggered the get-off-the-stage music.

Still talking undeterred, Bisset fired off a profanity that began with the words, “And the people who have given me … ”

Oddly, TV viewers didn’t hear that first part of her statement. It was bleeped. But what did get through TV sets loud and clear was the forbidden final word.

Another minor glitch reared its head later on for co-presenters Jonah Hill and Margot Robbie.

“I’m not gonna lie to you,” Hill said, grinning into the camera. “Right now, they put up the wrong stuff on the TelePrompTer.”

In a flash, Robbie was handed a sheet of paper for the pair to read.

Overall, the program was fun, fast-moving and refreshingly uncluttered with the usual awards-show dross.

All due respect was paid to Woody Allen (himself predictably a no-show) by Diane Keaton in accepting his Cecil B. DeMille lifetime achievement award. Keaton delivered a mini-seminar on the greatness of Allen’s film career, especially his skill at creating women characters.

Then she wrapped up her tribute in quirky style by saluting her friend of 45 years with a familiar children’s song: “A circle is round, it has no end,” she sang. “That’s how long you’re going to be my friend.”

A comic highlight of the evening was “Mr. Golden Globes.” He was introduced by Fey as “my adult son from a previous relationship” but turned out to be Poehler done up as a fussy lad who groused, “This is stupid! I hate being up here!”

“Don’t you talk to me like that,” Fey shot back. “Do you want to go live with your father?”

“I can’t,” was the churlish reply. “You won’t tell me who it is!”

“Well, he’s here tonight,” snapped Fey. “So look around.”

With hosts like that, it was hard not to look forward to next year’s Globes, when these Golden gals will be back again.

Print Friendly

White House Can’t Force Kimmel Off Air

By Robresha Jackson

WASHINGTON (AP/UTC The Loop) — The White House has responded to a petition calling for an apology and the removal of Jimmy Kimmel’s television show by saying the comedian can’t be forced off the air.

More than 105,000 people signed the petition on the White House website. It followed an October broadcast of ABC’s “Jimmy Kimmel Live” featuring a segment in which Kimmel spoke to young children about U.S. government debt owed to China.

One boy said “kill everyone in China” when Kimmel asked how the U.S. should repay China.

In its response, the White House noted that ABC and Kimmel have apologized, and that the network has removed the segment from future broadcasts and its online platforms.

The White House also noted that the Constitution protects free speech, even when it’s offensive.

 

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Print Friendly

Latest Trends from Fashion Week in Milan

By: Kelli Findlay

MILAN (AP/UTC The Loop) -MILAN (AP) — Italian fashion trumpeted its roots during the third day of Milan Fashion Week on Monday.

Milan designers emphasized what they do best, showing off tailored silhouettes, highlighting advanced textiles that elevate the looks and putting the spotlight on the artisanal work behind their exclusive wares.

Etro, the Milan-based fashion house famed for its paisley prints, went one step further, parading out the men and women who create their garments at a factory in the southern region of Apulia to the strains of local folk music.

The focus on Made in Italy provides an antidote to recent moves by foreign conglomerates to snatch up some of Italy’s prized family-run companies, many in the throes of generational change and seeking to secure their futures.

___

GUCCI

Gucci’s mod mariner cuts a boxy figure in loose-fitting short jackets and generous sweatshirts paired with slim trousers and solidly soled shoes. The peacoat that anchors the collection sports a rich, knotty texture achieved by working a traditional Tuscan fabric with neoprene.

Creative director Frida Giannini’s palate of dusty pastels creates a mood of a just-calmed storm and lends smoky contrast to the perfect black that permeates the collection.

Ready to set sail, the Gucci mariner tucks an oversized duffel or folded shopper with bamboo handles under his arm, dons his seafarer’s cap, in cloth or leather with a smart leather braid around the crow, and sets off, un-squinting, into the sunrise behind his round Gucci sunglasses.

___

EMPORIO ARMANI

Italy’s fashion titan Giorgio Armani’s Emporio Armani menswear collection for next fall and winter stood out for its use of soft fabrics so lustrous they almost seemed lit from within.

From first to last, the collection was a masterful compendium of modern good taste. Armani made his name with the artfully deconstructed men’s jacket, and the narrow silhouette at Emporio looked fresh. Slim pants ended at the ankle over chunky oxfords. Jackets were tight, with three or four buttons, and had small, high collars.

The somewhat prim vibe of the jackets was counteracted by the quiet but deep luxury of fabrics. Fur was everywhere, either peeking out of hoods in flashes, or sleekly fashioned into soft overcoats and jackets. There also were sweaters with fake fur inserts, while wool was worked to look like astrakhan.

____

ETRO

Etro put its Made in Italy ethos in evidence by sending its tailors and seamstresses down the runway alongside models wearing their creations.

So a pattern-cutter named Flavio Cardilla marched down the catwalk to lively Italian folk music alongside a model wearing a closely fitted hound’s-tooth suit, one of the many artisans joining in the parade.

“This show is dedicated to our tailors,” said Kean Etro, who designs the menswear collection. “After all, we’re together day in, day out.”

The fashion house that has made paisley a way of life devised this collection out of a jangle of contrasting checks and plaids. The silhouette was slim and tight, layered with waistcoats and topped with a wildly printed paisley wool scarf for a look that is pure 21st-century dandy. Briefcases and suitcases in matching patterns completed the look.

Print Friendly

“12 Years A Slave” Wins Finally

By: Charnele Box

BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. (AP/UTC The LOOP) — The Golden Globes are typically Hollywood’s bawdiest awards show — “a wonderful mess,” said co-host Tina Fey of this year’s bash. But in the end, after all the boozy banter — some of it bleeped for broadcast — the 1970s corruption tale “American Hustle” got a very serious push toward Oscar glory, picking up three major awards.

Benefiting the most from Sunday night’s Globes as focus shifts to the Academy Awards, David O. Russell’s con caper locked in best comedy, best actress (Amy Adams) and best supporting actress (Jennifer Lawrence).

Not that early-season favorite “12 Years a Slave” isn’t still in the running. Though it earned only one award, Steve McQueen’s historical epic took home the night’s top honor: best film drama. But “American Hustle” seems to have emerged from the 71st annual Golden Globes as the film to beat.

Oscar doesn’t usually care much for comedies, but “American Hustle” offers a rich blend of scandal, style and superb acting that is bound to get Academy voters’ attention.

The Globes have flipped awards season momentum before. Though Ben Affleck was denied an Oscar nomination last year for directing “Argo,” he did win best director at the Globes and his film went on to win best picture at the Oscars. In 2009, Katherine Bigelow’s “The Hurt Locker” lost in the best film category to James Cameron’s “Avatar” at the Globes. The defeat seemed to sway Oscar voters in Bigelow’s favor and she snagged the best picture award.

With the Oscar nominations coming Thursday, lost-in-space saga “Gravity,” which earned Alfonso Cuaron the best director Globe, could pick up some additional pull with likely nominations in the craft categories, which the Globes don’t recognize. There’s also a lot of built-in affection for its leading lady, Sandra Bullock, not to mention the film’s impressive worldwide box office performance.

Hosting Sunday night’s Globes for the second year in a row, Fey and Amy Poehler drew big laughs as they targeted such A-listers as Matt Damon, Meryl Streep and Leonardo DiCaprio.

One of the evening’s well-received jokes was delivered in the “SNL” alums’ opening bit in a reference Fey made to “Gravity”: “It’s a story of how George Clooney would rather float away into space and die than spend one more minute with a woman his own age.”

Last year, the duo led a six-year ratings high with 19.7 million viewers. They’ll return as hosts next year.

Besides “American Hustle” and “12 Years a Slave,” the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, which presents the Globes, also favored other fact-based films from America’s past: the ’80s-era AIDS drama “Dallas Buyers Club” and the high-finance extravaganza “The Wolf of Wall Street,” which both won top awards.

“Dallas Buyers Club” stars Matthew McConaughey and Jared Leto, who both lost noticeable weight for their roles — “or as actresses call it, ‘being in a movie,'” joked Fey — won their first Globes for best dramatic actor and best supporting actor. DiCaprio, a nine-time nominee, picked up his second Globe for best comedy actor for his turn as a provocative stockbroker in Martin Scorsese’s nearly three-hour “Wall Street.”

“I am thankful that Martin Scorsese is still this punk rock,” said DiCaprio backstage.

Famously absent from awards shows for years, Woody Allen received the Cecil B. DeMille lifetime achievement honor, which was accepted by the director’s “Anne Hall” star Diane Keaton.

“Did you see Diane Keaton tonight?” best comedy actress winner Cate Blanchett asked reporters backstage. “She is my style icon, my acting icon — the works.” Blanchett took home the award for her portrayal of a fallen socialite in Allen’s “Blue Jasmine.”

Elegant in an Armani gown, Blanchett joked, “A lot of effort goes into this effortlessness. It’s a wonderful mirage to be here tonight, but it’s not entirely who I am.”

___

Follow AP Film Writer Jessica Herndon on Twitter at: https://twitter.com/SomeKind

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Print Friendly

From Nada to Prada: Fashion Week in Milan

By: Alex Givens

MILAN (AP/UTC The Loop) — Designers are offering alternate realities for men next winter.

Yes, tailored suits and overcoats, the staples of any wardrobe, have their place on the runways on the second day of Milan Fashion Week on Sunday.

But designers also are recognizing men’s need to escape their urban work-a-day worlds and get in touch with nature. They don’t go so far as to offer outdoor clothing, per se. But there is more than a smattering of short, hooded parkas worn over suits and with backpacks that suggest some other destination after the office. And many collections incorporate active wear, including athletic trousers, often knit, with elastic or drawstring waistlines and gathered cuffs.

Milan Fashion Week runs through Tuesday.

___

PRADA

Miuccia Prada is closing the book on her study of pop culture, choosing a more intimate look at fashion.

Prada set the stage by conjuring European avant-garde theater of the late 1970s and early 1980s. Her materials: sheer and light-weight fabric. Her color scheme was mostly deep tones with purple, rust, teal and browns offset by cream, red and magenta.

The looks themselves had a theatrical appeal — men’s leisure suits in deep tones with contrasting piping along the outer seams were accented with silky scarves tied around their neck, instead of ties. Suits were paired with silky collared shirts, or super-sheer knit tops that put in clear evidence the wearer’s state of fitness.

Prada couldn’t say all she wanted with just men, so included women also in the show.

They wore paper-light leather dresses gathered at the waist and neckline or long sheer skirts with floor-skimming boas.

___

BOTTEGA VENETA

Bottega Veneta creative director Tomas Maier’s details startle with their subtlety.

The quiet bronze plaid jacket appears to have had its hemline dipped in electric blue dye that gently fades at the edge. An argyle pattern is knitted on a bias. The asymmetrical neckline of a soft pullover hugs a shoulder, giving the effect of one-sided shrug.

Some of the details in the menswear collection for next fall and winter have feminine antecedents, like a broad scooped neckline on a sweater, but the overall feel of the collection was decidedly masculine, defined by an athletic silhouette.

“The collection is about versatility and ease,” Maier said in notes.

Many of the trousers taper to ribbed cuff, mimicking active wear, and worn often with a bomber jacket and heavy shoes. Two tone knit caps tucked under the ears finish the look with a bit of whimsy. Dark neutral colors dominate.

Bottega Veneta started as a leather goods company, and Maier exploits the tradition with a cross-body satchel that is clutched under the arm, as are large shoppers often in the fashion house’s trademark weave.

___

FERRAGAMO

Italian fashion house Salvatore Ferragamo’s menswear collection for fall took traditional male staples like jean jackets and trench coats and re-worked them in earthy colors blended with just a hint of ethnic or nomadic pattern.

Long wool trench coats in tan were splashed with bands of sesame and chocolate. Jackets and even suits were sprinkled with stripes or patterns lifted from Native American blankets, keeping things interesting. Peacoats and military jackets came in an unexpected pale mint green.

The collection by designer Massimiliano Giornetti made stunning use of leather, as befits a house which began as a shoemaker to the Hollywood stars in the 1920s.

Boots with thick soles and a strap around the ankle came in different color variations, including a deep blue, and looked great with both suits and less formal looks. Short little jean jackets came in leather or pony skin. But for a house that makes its bread and butter from accessories, there were few bags on the runway except for hefty-looking large totes perfect for a weekend getaway.

____

JOHN RICHMOND

John Richmond has had skirts in his personal wardrobe since his youth, or as the designer put it, “before everyone started doing it.”

In fact, it is a skirt from Richmond’s own closet that was worn by a bare-chested male model on the 1984 cover of British magazine The Face, which has earned a place in fashion history.

Notice he doesn’t call them kilts. This is no Scottish fetish.

“It is more punk-associated,” Richmond said backstage after the premier of his winter 2015 collection, which included knee-length skirts with front pleats layered with a man’s suit in matching fabric, a novel variation of the three-piece suit.

Richmond concedes the skirt is not for everyone, but for the few who are willing to give it a go, he doesn’t see a risk to their masculinity.

“I don’t think that guys look feminine wearing a skirt. They look really cool,” he said.

The overall mood of the collection was decidedly masculine, with leather white-on-black bomber jackets, quilted jackets with leather pants, pullover sweatshirts with optical flair and sartorial suits in checks and stripes.

At the end of the show, Richmond’s 3-year-old son Lou joined him on the runway for a hug.

___

VIVIENNE WESTWOOD

British designer Vivienne Westwood’s menswear collection for fall was full of baggy trousers referencing hip hop music, mixed up with environmentalist messages.

There were three versions of the tracksuit, a hip hop favorite: a tight, high tech zip-up in gray, a loose and baggy one accented in black trim, and a full-on gold version with a hood.

Westwood’s clothes have strong ties to music, so the nod to hip hop seemed only natural for the women who invented the safety-pin looks that defined punk rock in the 1970s.

Fond of splashing political messages across T-shirts, she sent several models out wearing shirts emblazoned with the words “+ 5 degrees,” in reference to global warming.

Her casual looks often featured low-waisted baggy trousers cut off at the knee, paired with a big sweater and oxfords, or a leather jacket, or just a T-shirt and sneakers. A raincoat as thin as tissue paper looked like just the thing to pop into a suitcase before a trip.

___

CALVIN KLEIN

Calvin Klein’s looks for next winter suggest something of a futuristic global adventurer/man of mystery.

His outfits are monochromatic in tones of camel, olive and blue-gray that give the impression the wearer can mimetically conceal himself in any environment: desert, forest or sea.

Loose trousers shimmering in copper and silver are worn with bulky graphic or quilted satin sweatshirts that relay a sense of utility and strength. For outerwear, there’s a shiny hooded parka or woolen bomber.

Suits were closely tailored, with tapered cuffs worn over laced boots. Jackets had mildly contrasting lapels, and are worn over button-up shirts, tieless. The mystery comes in with the ample backpacks that require a cross body strap, and the oversized overcoat.

If he is just going to work, why all the gear? What could this apparently mild-mannered traveler with the slicked-back hair be really up to?

___

MONCLER GAMME BLEU

Moncler, the company that glammed up the down jacket, topped off its recent blockbuster stock market debut with a debut of another sort during Milan’s menswear shows — it added womenswear to its only-for-men Gamme Bleu fall-winter 2014-2015 line.

Designer Thom Browne has proved adept at Moncler at channeling the rich visual language of sports into city wear for fashionable urbanites. For his Milan Fashion Week preview, he turned a former factory in Milan into a wood-paneled library at a British country estate, and showed a collection that pulled its inspiration from the golf green circa 1920.

The collection was a riff on diamond-print argyle done in every way possible on jackets, pants, socks and even a full-length down skirt (shown on both male and female models). For the less bold, the Moncler gray quilted down jacket, cut like a blazer, ornamented with a stitched argyle pattern, will probably be enough to recall the summer greens.

Moncler pulled off Europe’s most successful IPO last year when its shares rose nearly 50 percent on their first day of trading. On Sunday, Moncler showed it is serious about continuing to broaden its product line.

___

ANGELO GALASSO

London-based Italian designer Angelo Galasso is bullish on Milan.

Galasso sees so much potential in Milan’s retail market that he is moving his store this winter, tripling its size just 2 ½ years after opening in Milan and five years after launching the eponymous brand. While most shoppers at Galasso’s Milan store are foreign tourists, the designer says his Italian clientele is growing and often spends in equal measure to his foreign followers.

“Italians are tired, and it is not just because the economy is not doing well, but also of their wardrobes,” Galasso said. He senses Italian men are ready to burst beyond the classic blazer and find less repetitive looks.

Galasso’s collection for next winter includes tailored jackets with wide lapels made from printed tie fabric or velvet, and worn with ripped jeans — giving both a dandy and a 1970s vibe.

___

PHILIPP PLEIN

German designer Philipp Plein called his fall-winter 2014-2015 menswear collection “Noir Cowboy.”

The show started off with a bang with a real-life rodeo show complete with a bucking bronco. Overwhelmingly black, both matte and shiny, the only splashes of color in the entire collection were in the red checked shirts or the fringed scarves.

Versace also mined the western theme for its menswear show, but Plein’s take was more decadent and luxurious.

Plein’s collection made expert use of animal skins ranging from leather all the way through to crocodile and snakeskin. A buffalo skull motif was worked onto T-shirts and on cashmere blankets thrown across the torso and belted. Some of the jackets featured snakeskin lapels with Swarovski micro studs. That’s some sharp cowboy.

___

MARNI

Fur highlights Marni’s menswear for next winter.

The centerpiece item is the fur collar accessory, replacing the scarf, which comes in green mink or dark Astrakan. Soft, hug-inviting vests are made from beaver. And goat fur is used in pants as well as caps.

As in other collections in Milan this season, Marni creative director Consuelo Castiglioni included athletic wear, knitted sweatpants and sweatshirts with a strategically concealed pocket.

Marni’s trademark prints also were on display, Castiglioni’s own floral designs as well as prints made from artworks from so-called outsider artists who achieve a level of mastery despite a lack of formal training.

 

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Print Friendly

A Cause, A Movement, A City Without Tears

By Alexandria Adams
CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (UTC/The Loop)- Michael Kelly, also known as Big Mike Mic, is a local Chattanooga rapper who dreams of a city without violence.

Kelly and his brother Brian started the project, “City Without Tears”, a year and a half ago. M. Kelly said, “ I want to bring awareness, awareness to the numbness of the violence and injustice that has been going on in the community.”

City Without Tears flyer

City Without Tears flyer

M. Kelly said that City Without Tears was inspired by his own self reflection, and seeing the tremendous toll that a life with violence takes on not only one person, but a community.

M. Kelly considers himself an artist and has been creating music for ten years. He wrote a six track EP, a documentary, a poem ,and a music video to help spread the message about the reoccurring violence and murders that Chattanooga has been experiencing.

By seeing the effects of violence firsthand M. Kelly said that is what drives him to continue his efforts to help put a stop to the violent crimes. “God led my heart to stop talking and be active.”

The two brothers hope City Without Tears becomes not just a message, but also a movement. B. Kelly said,” No one wants to see anyone hurt; especially not someone that you love. If one person is hurt, that hurt is going to spread.”

Brian Kelly speaks about the cause in the documentary

Brian Kelly speaks about the cause in the documentary

They hope their efforts make an impact not only on the local community, but that the message to end violence reaches to other cities having the same problem.
M. Kelly said, “ This project needs to be on the biggest platform possible. There is heavy violence going on in every city. This, most definitely is something that needs to be broadcast.”

B. Kelly said, “Everything is like an infection. If you don’t do something, it’s only going to get bigger and bigger. Why be reactive, when we can be more proactive?”

They hope to raise at least $10,000 for the project.

If you are interested in finding out more information about the City Without Tears project please e-mail Brian Kelley at bdotkelly@gmail.com or call 423-903-4293.  If you would like to donate to the City Without Tears project please visit www.kickstarter.com and type “City Without Tears” into the search bar.
You can also follow Michael Kelly on Twitter and “like” his Facebook page.Make sure to view the exclusive interview with the Kelly brothers only on the Mocs News Youtube page.

 

 

 

 

 

Print Friendly

Big Mike Mic Describes A City Without Tears

By Tia Kalmon

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (UTC/The Loop) – Gangs and crime are a problem for Chattanooga, but one local rapper is trying to stop the violence through his organization, City Without Tears.

This organization was founded by Michael Kelly a year and a half ago. It now consists of a documentary, music video, a six-song EP album and a poem.

This is the postcard for City Without Tears.

This is the postcard for City Without Tears.

“I want to bring awareness, awareness of the numbness for the violence and injustice that’s been going on in the community and how people need to self-reflect,” Kelly said. “Actually the song in the project came from me actually self-reflecting and seeing what I can do, because I knew a lot of things had been going on and I didn’t want to be one of those people that was saying ‘that’s what you should do,’ or just being someone who talked. Since I’m an artist, music is so powerful, words just came out and that was the birth of City Without Tears.”

He wants this to be on the biggest scale possible, raising $20,000 to give back to the community to stop the violence. Kelly wants to take City Without Tears into the community to meet people, to make an impression on them, and to change the statistics to stop the crime.

“What drives me is the shape of the community and my own insecurities and ways that I want to be better because I’m not where I want to be as an individual,” Kelly said.

Kelly began City Without Tears when he saw loved ones in his life disappear because of violence in the city. It hit close to home for Kelly and now he has found inspiration in the mist of danger.

“Life is about your own journey and what you find in yourself and what you were put on this earth to do, to find your purpose,” Kelly said. “That’s a journey through ups and downs. It’s hard sometimes but I feel like that’s what inspires me so my music is real personal.”

Kelly goes by Big Mike Mic when he performs. Big Mike Mic performed at the Barking Legs Theater Friday, February 28th. He began his performance by making a juice out of only organic products, because he wanted to give the audience “an organic performance.”

Big Mike Mic performing at the Barking Legs Theater March 1.

Big Mike Mic performing at the Barking Legs Theater March 1.

“Everything is like an infection, if you don’t do something it’s going to get bigger and bigger,” Brian Kelly, Manager for Big Mike Mic, said. “And why be reactive when we can be more proactive.”

If you would like to donate to City Without Tears you can visit Kickstarter.com and search “City Without Tears.” For more information you can e-mail Brian Kelley at bdotkelly@gmail.com or call, 423-903-4293.

Check out the video of the interview with Big Mike Mic uploaded to the Mocs News YouTube page!

Print Friendly

Country Singer’s Death, Marked as a Suicide

By Alexandria Adams

Singer Mindy McCready dies in apparent suicide

HEBER SPRINGS, Ark. (AP/The Loop) — Mindy McCready, who hit the top of the country charts before personal problems sidetracked her career, died Sunday in Arkansas in an apparent suicide. She was 37.

The Cleburne County Sheriff’s Office said in a news release that McCready was found dead at a residence in Heber Springs from what appears to be a single, self-inflicted gunshot to the head. An autopsy is pending.

It wasn’t the first suicide attempt for the troubled singer, whose list of problems only continued to grow in 2013.

McCready entered court-ordered rehab earlier this month after her father told a judge she was no longer taking care of herself or her children and was abusing drugs and alcohol. Her sons were put in foster care at the time, but it’s not clear where Zander and Zayne were at the time of McCready’s death.

McCready’s longtime boyfriend David Wilson, the father of her younger son, died last month in Arkansas. Authorities found his body on the same porch where they discovered McCready’s on Sunday, and his death also was investigated as a suicide.

The front porch light remained on Sunday night at McCready’s home in the wooded lakefront community filled with large homes. Yellow crime-scene tape blocked off the front of the house, and a deputy sat watch over the property, referring questions to the sheriff. A pickup truck remained in the driveway.

__

 

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.

Print Friendly