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It's Hammer Time at California Theatre

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It’s “Hammertime” in San Bernardino when the man who first brought rap music into the mainstream takes center stage Sept. 11 at the California Theatre of the Performing Arts, 562 W. Fourth St.

Presented by the City of San Bernardino Economic Development Agency, MC Hammer in concert is the first show of the fall season at the historic and landmark theater in downtown San Bernardino.

Tickets are $19 to $49, and are available through www.ticketmaster.com, www.livenation.com, or the theater box office at (909) 885-5152.

Known as much for his flashy wardrobe, especially his trademark baggy parachute pants, as his immense talents as a dancer and showman, MC Hammer’s second album, “Please Hammer Don’t Hurt ‘Em,” became the best-selling rap album of the time.

Born Stanley Kirk Burrell in Oakland in 1962, he was a bat/ball boy for the Oakland Athletics, where he entertained fans by dancing during breaks in the game, and earned the nickname “Hammer” for his resemblance to baseball legend “Hammerin” Hank Aaron. He became interested in hip-hop when he returned to civilian life after a stint in the U.S. Navy, and formed his own record label called Bust It. He recorded the album “Fell My Power” in 1987 with ex-Con Funk Shun mastermind Felton Pilate producing.

Capitol Record later signed him to a multi-album deal; his first release was a revamped version of his first album retitled “Let’s Get It Started.” The album, with the hit “Turn This Mutha Out,” went double platinum. But it was MC Hammer’s 1990 follow-up album, “Please Hammer Don’t Hurt ‘Em” that launched his career into the stratosphere. It’s first single, “U Can’t Touch This,” was an instant smash hit and went on to win two Grammys (Best R&B Song and Best Solo Rap Performance). MC Hammer’s next two singles, “Have You Seen Her (a cover of the ‘70s song by the Chi-Lites) and “Pray” (built on the keyboard hook from “When Doves Fly” by Prince) followed “U Can’t Touch This” into the Top 10.

Sales of “Please Hammer Don’t Hurt ‘Em” passed the 10 million mark and make it the No. 1 Album of the Year. He released the album “Too Legit To Quit” in 1991. Although it wasn’t as successful as “Please Hammer Don’t Hurt ‘Em,” the title track was a hit and the album still sold more than three million copies. “The Funky Headhunter” (1994) featured the singles “Pumps and a Bump” and “It’s All Good.” In 1995 he released “Inside Out.” Other albums include “Family Affair (1998), “Active Duty” (2001), “Full Blast” (2003), “Look Look Look (2006), and DanceJamtheMusic (2008).

MC Hammer became a preacher in the late 1990s, was a television show host and dance judge. In 2008 he co-created a dance web site called DanceJam. In 2009, Hammer’s own reality show, called Hammertime,” aired on A & E Network. This summer he started a mixed martial arts management company, Alchemist Management.

Ex-wife of Tiger Woods Breaks Silence

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By Christine Kearny –

(Reuters Life!) - The now ex-wife of Tiger Woods has broken the silence she maintained through the torrid sex scandal that engulfed their marriage, saying she has been through "hell."

Elin Nordegren spoke to People magazine in an interview published on Wednesday, two days after she and Woods issued a statement confirming their divorce, which had been widely anticipated for months after his public confession of infidelity.

"I've been through hell," the Swedish-born former nanny told the publication. "It's hard to think you have this life, and then all of a sudden -- was it a lie? You're struggling because it wasn't real. But I survived, it was hard, but it didn't kill me."

Nordegren, 30, who met Woods at the age of 21 while minding children for a Swedish golfer but is now studying psychology, said she never suspected the affairs that Woods, reputed to be the world's wealthiest sports star, admitted to and publicly apologized for in February.

"I'm so embarrassed that I never suspected -- not a one. For the last three and a half years, when all this was going on, I was home a lot more with pregnancies, then the children and my school," she said.

When asked about his ex-wife's comments, Woods told reporters on Wednesday after playing a golf event in New Jersey that he "wished her the best in everything."

"It's a sad time in our lives. And we're looking forward to -- in our lives and how we can help our kids the best way we possibly can. And that's the most important thing," he said.

Nordegren said she has "not watched one minute of golf" since the revelations.

FAMILY TORN APART

Woods, who has won 14 major championships, returned to the game in April after losing up to $35 million in sponsorship revenue as his private life unraveled over allegations that surfaced in late November and December about affairs between him and several women.

The revelations surfaced after a middle-of-the-night car accident at the couple's luxury Florida home where Woods crashed into a tree and a fire hydrant. Nordegren told police she smashed the car's back window with a golf club to get him out.

Nordegren told People that she did not hit Woods on the night of the car crash.

"There was never any violence inside or outside our home," she said. "The speculation that I would have used a golf club to hit him is just truly ridiculous."

Since then Nordegren said she has experienced various emotions. Woods and Nordegren share custody of a 3-year-old daughter and a 1-year-old son.

"The word betrayal isn't strong enough. I felt like my whole world had fallen apart," she said, before later adding, "I have been through the stages of disbelief and shock, to anger and ultimately grief over the loss of the family I so badly wanted for my children."

Of the settlement she received, which neither she nor Woods have disclosed but People estimated to be worth $100 million, she said it wasn't worth splitting up her family.

"Money can't buy me happiness," she said. "Or put my family back together."

Praised for maintaining her privacy through the ordeal, Nordegren, who disclosed she suffered weight and hair loss from stress before the divorce, said she wanted to protect her children.

"For my kids, I felt that (maintaining privacy) was the only normalcy I could give them, since they have a very famous dad," she said.

She conducted the interview over four visits lasting a total of 19 hours at the rented Windermere, Fla., home where she now lives with their two children.

The magazine said Nordegren had approached the publication to tell her side of the story and a spokeswoman said no one had been paid for the article.

"I felt like setting some things straight," Nordegren said in the article.

She and Woods tried for "months and months" to reconcile, she added, but "without trust and love" it wasn't possible. She will relocate to southern Florida so that her children can be close to their father.

"Forgiveness takes time," she said.

(Reporting by Christine Kearney, editing by Patricia Reaney and Jill Serjeant)

Pam Grier Receives the "Champion of Challenges Award"

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By Lea Michelle Cash

The Wellness Community has several locations stationed throughout the Southland. However, the Wellness Community located in West Los Angeles is the largest cancer support organization worldwide.

Celebrating its 28th anniversary this year, programs include support groups, individual counseling and education on complex cancer related topics as well as assistance with stress reduction & exercise programs. Its mission is ensure that all people impacted with cancer are empowered by knowledge and strengthened of actions.

Recently, on August 7th the organization gathered together community and friends to raise money towards helping people regain control of their lives, reduce feelings of isolation, and restore hope regardless of their stage battling their disease, because all services at the Wellness Community Center are free. Individuals come from all over Southern California, and the 3rd annual fundraising goal was aimed towards hiring an African American therapist on staff at the West Los Angeles location.

Their goal was achieved, as many stepped out at the Cicada Restaurant in downtown Los Angeles to support the outstanding organization fundraising mission. The gala evening belonged to shutting down cancer.

The event co-hosted by entrepreneur and businessperson Joe Williams and his wife Kathy, celebrated the bravery and survival for African American cancer survivors, and honored those who have fought valiantly, but lost their battles.

One such person was the late public relations icon and entertainment veteran, Pat Tobin who died of colon cancer. She was honored posthumously with a presentation and award from legendary balladeer, Howard Hewett, a personal family friend of Tobin’s. The award was given to Pat’s daughter, Lauren Tobin and her grandson.

Actress, Pam Grier, the “Champion of Challenge Award” honoree spoke after the acceptance of her award. She has written a book detailing her journey with cancer. When she was diagnosed with cervical cancer, it had spread to another organ, and she was given 18 months to live. The title of her book is “Foxy: My Life in Three Acts.” Before her presentation, renowned oncology surgeon, Dr. Ronald Hurst, delivered a keynote address. Both speakers related their wellness message from the heart stating, “Fear, is the greatest cause that many people will died from cancer.”

They both pointed out to the listening audience that health care screenings are very important. They produce early interventions, and unquestionably saves lives.

Celebrities who attended the event were Camille Winbush, the legendary Keith David, renowned artist Synthia St. James, Councilman Bernard Parks and comedian Luenell.

2010 Teen Choice Awards

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By Lea Michelle Cash –

On Sunday, at Universal Studios’ Gibson Amphitheatre, the hundreds of teen fans that attended the 2010 Teen Choice Awards had several surprises in store for them, as they embarked on their adventure of having a beach party blast with many of the hottest celebrities in Hollywood.

There were screams, screams and more screams. The annual Fox two-hour broadcast was an absolute teen screaming extravaganza, where the red carpet is blue instead of red. The entire cast of teen sensational hits such as “Glee” and “Twilight” were present. In addition, Hillary Duff and the entire family of Kardashians girls stepped out sending the teens into an overwhelming hair rising frenzy.

The evening produced many winners nominated by the teens and selected by the teens as winners. This year the teens logged on to a special website and casted more than 85 million votes in support of their favorite celebrities from film, television, music, fashion and sports.

The teens had many choices to choice from and in summary, some of the evenings winners were: Choice Movie: Sci Fi “Avatar”; Choice Movie Actress (Drama): Sandra Bullock; Choice Movie Actor (Drama) Robert Pattinson; Tina Fey and Ashton Kutcher won in the category of Choice Movie Actress and Actor for Comedy. Television winners were, Choice TV Show (Drama): “Gossip Girls”; Choice Actor, Chace Crawford, Choice actress, Leighton Meester; Choice TV Reality show “Keeping Up with the Kardashians”. American Idol won a few awards as well.

In music, Justin Bieber, Lady Gaga, Selena Gomez, Beyonce, Eminem, Keith Urban and Taylor Swift all received the coveted surfboard.

David Beckham, Choice Athlete and “The Sims 3 for Choice Video game. Katy Perry, who hosted the event, set off the night on a flashy stage with a performance of her latest song, "Teenage Dream." Justin Bieber accepted an award and performed "U Smile" via satellite. Young R&B singer sensation Jason Derulo performed and P Diddy closed out the night with a spectacular performance. George Lopez, Ellen DeGeneres and Betty White made guest appearances.

Comedy Comes to the Inland Empire

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By Sonja Brown –

The House Party Comedy Tour hosted by Christopher “Kid” Reeves himself stopped by the Pechanga Comedy Club Thursday night Aug. 5. The Club was brought to it’s knees in laughter by Ray Lamont, also known as the “The Human I-pod” for his wide assortment music catalog of songs which he performs through singing, beat-boxing and self narration. This earned him a rare standing ovation with this unique brand of comedy, a perfect blend of voice and music imitations of well known singers and performers.

He absolutely left the crowd wanting and begging for more as some audience members threw money on the stage for him to tell another story while interjecting a song and clone-like voice imitation of music to performers like Barry White, Anita Baker, The Bee-Gee’s, Prince and many more.

The mixed crowd was simply amazed! If you closed your eyes it would be hard to tell if you were listening to the real thing.

After the show I got to ask Mr. Lamont how got started any why he did this kind of comedy to which he replied “to make people happy and forget about their troubles for a little while”. He absolutely brings his ’real self’ to the stage so you are not just seeing an ’act’ but someone who genuinely cares about the people sitting before him. By the end of the show everyone was on their feet. He has been doing this for 20yrs. and has performed on Def Comedy Jam, Comicview, and other comedy outlets. You can also find Jay Lamont on Utube. Let’s support our comedians.

Coming the weekend of Aug. 20th: DL Hugley.

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