AJ Williams (13)
Even before the inception of Motown music, Detroit was a hub of musicians, singers and entertainers. Fast forward to the 21st century and the Motown music vibe continues to be a driving force for all genres of music. Today’s fast five is with an artist contributing to this Motown music movement, saxophonist Saxappeal.
5 Questions With Saxappeal:
- What Is Music To You?
Music is my oxygen, my only way to breathe. Without music and the elements, which create it, I am not able to exist.
- What inspires your music?
My music has many inspirations. The love I receive from my wife inspires me to create compositions as beautiful as her. My son’s smile inspires me to make music that will make people smile from ear to ear. Not only am I inspired by happy and positive moments; I find inspiration from the not-so happy moments. When I am feeling down or having a somber moment, I can become inspired to create music to share with others who may be in a similar situation. You never know whose life you could save through the power of music.
- What is one thing most people don't know about you?
I've never learned how to do anything backwards: can't swim backwards, can't skate backwards. Can't even do a backflip, I think it's a trust issue. Just kidding.
- How do you balance your career and family?
I understand that without one, I can’t have the other. My family constantly pushes me to go further and reach higher. Often times, I wish I could travel with my family for every gig, but I know that time is soon coming!
- What are your upcoming projects?
I'm currently working on my third album. I'm very excited about this project, because it will feature my band. The album is titled "Introducing Collective Peace", which is the name of my band but also a movement.
It has been tons of fun working on it and I'm very excited for the world to hear it! It will be released in the fall of 2013. The first single of the album will be released in the coming months.
You could feel it coming. It’s like when you know the rain is coming and you can feel it in your bones. It’s about to be over. You and who you thought was the love of your life are breaking up. Sometimes there is a conversation, sometimes just a text. Then there are things that only a song can communicate. Keep this list right next to the refrigerator filled with ice cream or next to a big bottle of brown liquor.
Top 10 Breakup Songs:
1. Chantay Savage: I Will Survive
It’s here…V-day! You are single and awake to read the news, blogs and Facebook all talking about one of Hallmark’s favorite holidays…Valentine’s Day!! For all the single ladies and men out there today could be better know as 'Shots of Brown Liquor and listen to Nina Simone Day'. Yes, you could drown your loveless sorrow in alcohol and heart wailing music, but why?
Instead turn the tables on LOVE and show him or her who’s boss. Here’s 3 ways to make your single Valentine's Day a blast:
Ever heard that song “Something inside of me is telling me you’re saying Good-Bye” by Boney James. That is a very true feeling that sometimes happens in relationships. However, we might dismiss this feeling as just a slight emotion of insecurity. Sadly to says your gut may be advising you of the impending breakup that is on the way. Here are some signs to clue you in on when your mate may be looking to exit, stage right.
A world conquering marriage. The power of great partnerships in marriage. These are just a few concepts this Christian inter-racial Detroit couple promote and emulate. Meet Dan and Patrice Love, a young Detroit couple who believes in the power of marriage and love. The Loves were recently seen on the TLC network's reality show, Virgin Dairies in 2012. February 2013 they will appear on the Newlywed Game hosted by Sherri Sheppard. I had an oppourtunity to pick the Love's brain on how they met, what makes relationship work and being a inter-racial couple in Detroit.
How long have you been together?
We met May of 2010. Dan proposed December 23, 2011. We married May 6, 2012.
When did you meet?
Patrice and I met on the set of a Detroit film called CornerStore. She was working in wardrobe and I was the director of photography. In preproduction, I saw her when we first started doing location scouting for a Detroit liquor store. It was a misty humid day and she JUST had her hair pressed, Patrice was covering her hair with news papers, running from awning to awning trying to keep her hair from getting wet. I couldn’t help but to noticed her. She looked 16 but acted 40 so I couldn’t really get a grasp if she was in my dating territory so I just observed her from a distance.
Eventually production carried on, we did one test shoot day and the following day the producers wanted to take the film crew to their church Impact Ministries to be blessed. After service I asked Patrice to lunch, that was our first date. We begin dating incognito and announced we were a couple after the shooting was final.
What made you know he/she was the one?
(Dan) I knew she was the one when I observed Patrice at a Church service. We’d been dating for almost a year. I was in Church observing her when I knew I had to MAKE her the one. It was instant for me.
During the dating process in 2011, which we call dating with a purpose, I was living in LA so we were apart for a while. I was in LA trying to network to do entertainment work. I could feel the tension on our relationship and knew I had to get back to Detroit to make this happen or I might lose her. I moved back, saved up some money, bought a ring and popped the question.
(Patrice) I’d been praying because I felt in my heart I was ready to get married. Dan reflected everything I prayed for. I remember Valentine Day 2010 being by myself in my room talking to the God saying, “Lord all right, I am ready to be married.” The last line in my prayer was "Lord he does not even have to be Black."
I strongly feel that last statement in my prayer left the door wide open for God to bring me the man He designed for me. After praying, I just sat still and listened to my inner-self for warning signs or anything to let me know Dan was not the one for me. I got nothing saying Dan was not the right one. It just felt right . . . it felt amazingly right. I had peace about him as my future mate, my companion.
What makes a successful marriage?
(Patrice) COMMUNICATION, listening to each other not just trying to get our points across, understanding, love, and respect; letting each person play their roles (i.e. Dan is the head. I follow his lead because he leads in love and kindness.).
(Dan) As the husband, it is a natural feeling for me to feel responsible for her well-being. It is my role to support Patrice emotional and financially.
Never argue to be right, argue to find solutions. Never demean the others thoughts or opinion to win an argument.
Always protect each other and ALWAYS validate each other.
I always remember everything that is mine is Patrice's and vise versa, this means her looking at my email without my permission is about as offensive as her doing my laundry without my permission.
We’re on the same team so ALL of our individual possessions benefit both of us. Being flexible is important and not being afraid to get it wrong makes for a successful marriage because if one of us gets it wrong, well here comes love, which covers a multitude of faults.
We are both committed to keep trying until we get it right. It is important that each person desires to please the other above him/her self. Be able to apologize and then make an effort to do better.
Has being an interracial couple hindered or helped your relationship?
The only hindrance, if you call this a hindrance, is Dan grew-up in Waterford. I grew up in Detroit. I was conditioned to being treated a certain way, getting certain things, I was kind of materialistic. With my husband it is different, the priority is not only on material he extended my viewpoint. It is very refreshing for me.
I guess there are not any hindrances, yet. If and when they occur we will count on our unconditional love for one another to guide us through. There is something we do find funny. Example, when an old school song comes on like Lenny Williams song "Cause I love you." I tell Dan, “Baby that's my jam, lets dance.” He has this look on his face like - what, this song, who sings this song.
Dan has a way of making me feel loved and adored. This could be for any number of reasons other than the fact that Dan is Caucasian. I am so happy. During the dating stage, we both tried to out do each other in making the other feel cherished. It is a great feeling when you know you are loved. We both share that great feeling. We hope to inspire others to broaden their horizons when it comes to dating outside their ethnicity. It doesn’t hurt that we both love butter too.
Watch The Loves on the Newlywed Game, Thursday, February 7, 2013 at 8:00p eastern on the Game Show Network (GSN).
Mercury Burger Bar....Not your average Bar
At first glance you may pass by the Mercury Burger Bar that sits on the corner of Michigan and 14th in Detroit’s historic Corktown. On the outside it has a 60’s rustic vibe, however you would be doing your tastebuds a disservice by not partaken in the variety of flavors that await for you inside.
Owner, Dave Steinke lived in Corktown right after he graduated from college and returned back to start this gourmet, but not fluffy burger bar. “This is a iconic location and we wanted to do something to honor the location, but we didn’t want to compete with our neighbors.” Steinke continued,”We really don’t have a lot of overlap with the other restaurants, they support us and we support them.” Supporting Detroit is a very high priority on Steinke’s list. “Most of our vendors and produce comes locally, along with most of the employees are local.”
To create the diverse menu, Steinke enlisted Chef Ariel Millan to bring life to the culinary vision. The Mercury Burger Bar has something for everyone, from burgers, hot dogs and shakes to salads, fried green tomatoes and Chardonnay. Not into Beef? No worries, their handmade turkey burger or chicken sausage can meet your palette’s need. The hours are even accommodating to every type of customer, in a month they plan to introduce a breakfast menu to add to the existing lunch, dinner and late-night menu. There are too many items to list in one review of the burger bar.
However their best-sellers consist of the S.W. (Southwest) Burger, which I had the opportunity to try. Now, I would not normally opt for a Southwest anything, but upon the persuasion of General Manager, Kimberlia I bit right into the flavors of this burger. Topped with a chorizo slider, jalapeños, muster cheese, avocado and salsa on the side, there was not any sense that was not engaged in taste as I consumed each bite.
But WAIT, it did not end there, although the S.W. Burger is Kimberlia’s favorite, Steinke’s and Chef Ariel swore by the grilled bologna sandwich. However, I was beyond full at this point, so I had the late-night menu Ring bologna Slider to see what all the praise was about. Topped with spicy mustard, red onion marmalade on a sweet roll late nights in Detroit cannot get any sweeter. Combine great food, drinks, warm ambiance and great attentive service, there was no question that the Mercury Burger Bar gets my thumbs up approval.
Visit the Mercury Burger Bar at 2163 Michigan Avenue Detroit, MI 48216, (P) 313-964-5000, (W) www.MercuryBurgerBar.com. Hours: Monday-Sunday 11 a.m. - 2 a.m.
Maria Costa knows men, macho men to be exact. After selling out performances in 16 cities in six countries as well as the Kodak theatre in Hollywood, CA and other renowned venues across the West Coast. Maria Costa will now bring her Macho Men and the Women Who Love Them hit musical comedy to Detroit on July 26th at the Charles H. Wright African American Museum.
Costa has been called the Latina Lucille Ball and her talent lives up to the comparison. In her one woman show, she takes on stereotypes of several minority cultures from her latino father all the way to her a round the way hair stylist Wykisha. Costa tackles the realities in love and relationships and delivers in true comedic form.
According to Costa, she has a passion to highlight and empower more minorities, especially minority women in entertainment. Being in the audience, I could feel her passion jumping from the stage. She leaves nothing left on the floor because she give it all to her audience. Not just a performer, Costa is a savvy business woman who has just launched a Michigan office for her entertainment company, Oro Entertainment. Detroit, be on the lookout for this rising star that is making waves not only for minorities by race, but also making a name in business empowering women.
Brunch 7 days a week with the Hudson Cafe
There is a buzz around the area of Woodward and John R in Detroit. Summer has brought back Somerset City Lofts, along with the lofts at Merchants Row and the Woodhouse Spa. Also contributing to the buzz is the Hudson Cafe, a cozy brunch location with a urban twist.
In September of 2011 partners Maurice Wiggins and Starvros Adamopoulos teamed up with classically trained Chef Tom Teknos to bring their modern twist brunch cafe idea to Detroit. “We describe our cafe in two words, Downtown Detroit.” said partner Maurice Wiggins. “Our presence here in Detroit says that we are back, Detroit and businesses are back.” The Hudson Cafe is definitely welcomed by the residents, entrepreneurs and employees that are in downtown Detroit.
The fresh menu features breakfast items, lunch items, specialties and a custom cafe. “Our Cafe has sixteen different specialty coffees along with several different types of smoothies and baked items. The Cafe is open for take out and delivery to the surrounding downtown area.” Wiggins said. The newest items to the menu features their ‘Salmon Croquettes’, that has a sweet-tangy flavor that according to Chef Tom Teknos is a secret recipe. Also newly introduced is ‘Catfish and Waffles’ which is delicious and different than the typically offered chicken and waffles.
However, if lunch is more of what your palette craves, the Hudson Cafe will not disappoint. Their lunch menu is just as diverse as the their breakfast. The Hudson Salad with a house-made maurice dressing along with the Woodward burger is just a start to the lunch offerings. A new taste with each bite, freshness is a requirement according to Wiggins. “Everything we do is fresh, we make all of our ingredients in our kitchen. We never buy anything frozen and then just throw it on the grill. We frequent the Eastern market also because we want to buy Michigan.” With outdoor seating that is perfect for conversation or people watching.
People are excited to have the Hudson Cafe in Detroit. So next time you drive downtown stop by and be sure to try their signature ‘Red Velvet Pancakes’ with house-made cream cheese icing, your tastebuds will be sure to thank you for it. The Hudson Cafe, 1241 Woodward, Detroit, MI 48226. Mon.-Thurs. 8 a.m. - 3 p.m. Fri. - Sun. 8 a.m. - 4 p.m.
Have you ever had the midday blahs? The blahs that consist of the same tuna sandwich for lunch, same radio station and same routines. If so, get ready to break your lunchtime routine. Welcome the cure to your midday blues: Ramona Prater and The F’Club Radio Show.
Ramona Prater is Detroit’s daughter of radio and she’s back with her club of f’ers as she calls them. “The F’Club radio show is all about the fabulous life of your forties, fifties into forever. It’s a magazine show about lifestyle.” Prater said. “We talk about every issue, from fitness, flirting, family, finance, friends and much more.”
Ramona is no stranger to the roller-coaster ride of a career in radio, where stability is consider a luxury. “Even when I wasn’t working on a traditional radio station, I was always working on the F’Club. Just because one door closes, it doesn’t stop a dream” Prater continued. “Reinvention is what the F’Club is all about. My best advice would be if you are between a traditional job, take the time to master your dreams and skills. Research your craft, always keep thinking of new ways to reinvent yourself.”
Ramona’s infectious energy is one of the best things about her being on-air live in 3-D at UDetroit Cafe. “I am so excited for my audience to be able to hear me again, but now they can see me and come interact with me in person” Prater said. “You can come have lunch, dinner or even make us your after work spot for a cocktail” Prater continued.
Laughter, conversation, food, and cocktails makes the F’Club with Ramona Prater at UDetroit a definite summer hot spot. You can catch Ramona on-air live at UDetroit.com or sit in the audience live at the UDetroit Cafe, 1427 Randolph Street, Detroit, MI 48226. Monday-Thursdays, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and Fridays 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.
The Friday f.e.e.l
(f. e. e.Society. l)
I am very excited to introduce the third letter in our weekly Friday f.e.e.l: e.Society. When you first hear e.society you may think of technology and I will be blogging about some technology based things. However, with the entrepreneur boom that is happening is Detroit I wanted this blog to provide tools, events, people and reflection for the entrepreneur. Welcome to a world created just for you...the entrepreneur. Welcome to e.Society.
The beauty of writing to a entrepreneur is that there is no age demographic. A entrepreneur can begin at a young age or even ignite a vision later in life. This blog will speak to you no matter what your age is or what stage of entrepreneurship you are in.
I have been asked a lot of questions regarding what makes a person an entrepreneur.
Merriam-Webster defines an entrepreneur as one who organizes, manages, and assumes the risks of a business or enterprise. This is a very limited definition of what a entrepreneur is and what characteristics that person should possess. In my research I located this quiz from actonmba.org to find out if you are an entrepreneur and if so, what kind of entrepreneur are you. Click here to begin and check back every third friday for your e.Society blog.
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