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the chocolate voice December 2010

positive news that sweetens

Happy Holidays!

the soul

6holiday cooking tips & suggestions

the legendary tower of power an interview with with founder Emilio Castillo!

Meet Tonye Patano

The established actress stars in the Pulitzer prize winning Ruined

creative ways to help you get organized!

true experiences uplifting stories from our readers!

rich is better

advice, tips, and knowledge

on how to improve ]SYVĂ RERGMEPWXEXYW

TableofContents In Every Issue ->

4 Publishers Note ge 13 7 Dr. Sprinkles Point of View See pa 16 Faith & Inspiration with Dr. Amanda Goodson 17 In Ernie’s Mind 22 Out and About

Features 5 Letters to the Publisher

Our readers have been excited about the new look of The Chocolate Voice! Take a peak at what some had to say.

On The Cover

6 Tis the Season to be Fashionable!

Shanda gives you wardrobe ideas for the holiday season.

A magical Christmas gift!

The holidays are the most special time of year! Make your holidays sweet with this recipe: 

GYTÁVQP]TEGOIHFVS[RWYKEV 1/2 cup chopped pecans 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon, divided 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened 2 cups sugar 4 large eggs 1 1/2 cups sour cream 1 cup mashed cooked sweet potato (about 1 medium) 1 teaspoon vanilla extract  GYTWEPPTYVTSWIÂSYV 2 teaspoons baking soda 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon 1 teaspoon salt 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg  4VILIEXSZIRXS„*+VIEWIERHÂSYVEGYT ÂYXIHGEOITER-REWQEPPFS[PGSQFMRIFVS[RWYKEVTIcans, and 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon; set aside.In a large bowl, combine butter and sugar. Beat at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy. Beat in eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in sour cream, sweet TSXEXSIWERHZERMPPE-REQIHMYQFS[PGSQFMRIÂSYVFEOing soda, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, salt, and nutmeg. Gradually add to butter mixture, stirring well. Pour half of sweet potato batter into prepared pan. Sprinkle evenly with brown sugar mixture. Spoon remaining batter evenly over streusel. Bake 1 hour, or until a tester inserted in center comes out clean. Spoon Rum Glaze over cooled. Rum Glaze 2 cups confectioners’ sugar 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream 3/4 teaspoon rum extract

8 Holiday Cooking Tips

Shandeka Tinsley helps you stay organized for Christmas!

10 Hope Within

Dr. Lawrence Wood compels us in an essay on his experience in dealing with the homeless.

13 The Legendary Tower of Power

Founder of the Group Emilio Castillo takes us on a musical trip down memory lane.

15 Celebration Survival!

TSFL Health coach Sonya Fakleman teaches readers how to eat properly for the holidays.

19 Meet Tonye Patano .

An interview with the eloquent and insightful actress

the chocolate voice Publisher & Managing Editor Gwen Pierce

Contributors Lula Hunter Ernie McCray Dr. Shirley Sprinkles, Ph.D. Dr. Amanda Goodson, Sonya Fakelman, Dr. Lawrence H. Wood, M.D. Shandeka Tinsley and Shyana Brown

Interns Shyana Brown

Marketing Director 951-956-0537 P.O. Box 211234 Chula Vista, CA 91921

Graphic Artist Shanda Pierce

Ad Sales 619.507.9237 Photos courtesy of: The Chocolate Voice Tower of Power, Leighton Media Cast of Ruined and Tonye Patano, La Jolla Playhouse For Subscriptions and Back Issues Call 619-507-9327

The Chocolate Voice P.O. Box 50614, Tucson, AZ 85703 Fax: 619-421-8187 The Chocolate Voice is

Published monthly, January through December.

The publisher assumes no responsibility for claims or actions of its advertisers. Opinions expressed are not necessarily those of the publisher, its staff or advertisers. ISSN 1944-7698

©2010, The Chocolate Voice All rights reserved.

Sweet Honey  Child  is  a  place  for  exploration  and  celebration  of  your  African-­American  child. Here  you  will  find  products  for  your  special  one  that  reflects her  culture  and  celebrates  her  beauty  as  a ‘sweet  honey  child’.   www.sweet-­honey-­ P.O.  Box  4864 Oakland,  CA  94605 p-­510.473.7423  f-­510.295.2649 info@  sweet-­honey-­

Publishers Note

It’s Okay to Be Nice!

The holiday season has arrived and in true fashion I might EHH;SYPH]SYFIPMIZIXLEXJSVXLIÁVWXXMQI-EGXYEPP]TEVticipated in “Black Friday,” that chaotic day after Thanksgiving holiday shopping blitz? Let me just say, it wasn’t my idea. My husband and daughter who are both what I would consider low key shopaholics, strong armed me into getting out of my warm and cozy bed at 3:00 a.m., nonetheless, to satisfy XLIMVWTIRHMRKÁ\7SYRHWGVE^]VMKLX#;IPP[I[IVIR¸XXLI only crazies up at that ridiculous hour. In fact, the lines at 3 different Target stores were wrapped around the building, and in our case all for a George Foreman Grill, a couple of bed sheets and an air mattress. I can’t help but wonder is this event really worth losing precious sleep over? Fortunately, the holiday spirit has somewhat of a domino effect that spreads good cheer all around and, most people tend to be on their best behavior. In other words, my experience with Black Friday wasn’t nearly as bad as I thought. It’s as though around the holiday season people in general seem to make a conscious choice to be nice and, it’s okay. I believe that most of us share the same sentiment that it’s quite comforting to walk into a mall or coffee house where people are smiling and acknowledging each other. Or, attend a party or event being surrounded by the sweet sounds of holiday music and entertainment. Speaking of music and entertainment in this issue, I am honored to spotlight two equally nice and very creative individuEPW8LIÁVWXMW8SR]I4EXERSSJ7LS[XMQI¸WLMXWIVMIW;IIHW Tonye pronounced Tony is currently starring as Mama Nadi in the powerful story based on the Congolese war, RUINED, at the La Jolla Playhouse. If at all possible, this is a performance you won’t want to miss. Next is the calm cool and collected Emilio Castillo, the founder of one of my favorite R & B bands, the legendary Tower of Power. Emilio shares with TCV the fascinating back story of the group, a story that will take you for a musical trip down memory lane. In addition to our featured entertainers, make sure to check out Dr. Sprinkle’s informative point of view in her piece, “RICH IS BETTER, TRUST ME ON THAT ONE,” especially at this time of year when we must be mindful of money issues that can get out of hand if we aren’t careful. Also, writer Ernie McCray shares his poignant and very moving story on his recent visit to his beloved alma mater, The University of Arizona in Aging with the U of A. This month promises to have a lot of wonderful reading from SYV XIVVMÁG [VMXIVW ERH E JI[ RI[ XSS XLEX MRGPYHI LSPMHE] shopping tips and how to eat healthy. With that said, enjoy the holiday season and remember it’s okay to be nice!

Gwen Pierce

Letters to the


Read what our readers are saying!

out k c e Ch ite! s w e our n

The Comments A.S. Tucson, Arizona Dear Chocolate Voice,


I would like to commend Dr. Sprinkles on her very well written and appropriate articles. She writes beautifully on topics which are relevant and that, offer wise solutions to problems that are palatable for all generations.

E.G. Tucson, Arizona Dear Chocolate Voice, The November issue was beautiful! Like Grandma’s pound cake each edition get’s better and better!

E.S.M. Tucson, Arizona Dear Chocolate Voice, My compliments on what you’ve done with The Chocolate Voice. Each edition seems more polished than the last. In the November issue, I especially enjoyed the essay Go Home! In addition to some good ÀFWLRQ,ZRXOGOLNHWRVHHPRUH work like Dr. Sprinkles’ essay.


S ! E E e b L H to B T A N S O I TI H FAS

yland st s t h g i r give rry, b be me ves, Shanda hat s y a d i ur hol coats to scar lothes and w Let yo c a om pe her favorite r F ! h s i n ays. sight o you in for the holid r to wea


Pea Coats!

Bright jacket colors matched with neutral tones is always fashionable! And don’t be afraid to wear a short dress with your coat!

Accessories are THE most imTSVXERXTEVXSJXLISYXÁX0SSO at what’s hot and make sure to NOT over accessorize! You don’t want to look like a metal factory and sound like a cash register when you move!

Bangels I live for bangels, however not all bangels will match with everything. Silver and gold are of course more formal, and wooden and plastic are for daytime activities.

Chunky Chains

I know it sounds a bit gaudy, but it works! Chunky chains are stunning and are usually the one missing element of ETIVJIGXSYXÁX


Always pick a scarf that will compliment your skin tone, after all it is the closest garment to your face and it will bring out your complexion. My fav color choice for scarves is gold.

Suede Pumps It’s the season for holiday parties so you need to break out the heels! A nice suede pump will just about go for any function, and you can insert foot pads/ cushions so your feet wont hurt throughout the night.!


RICH IS BETTER Trust me on that one! -

By, Dr. Shirley Robinson Sprinkles


ecently, I’ve been learning a lot about money. In fact, I’ve learned more in the past two months than I IZIVHVIEQIHTSWWMFPI1]XEOISRÁRERGILEWEPways been to try to have enough to be comfortable; not poor, not rich—just comfortable. Needless to say, that goal has been quite elastic over the years. I’ve been plenty poor, and never rich, but very near the comfortable level. Well, what I’ve found out is that there are a lot of people who don’t want to be either poor or comfortable—they just want to be RICH. One of them is my husband, Leo. That’s why he has dragged me off to courses that teach people how to make millions in the stock market.  %XÁVWX-[EWUYMXITYXSJJF]EPPSJXLIKSFFP]KSSO talk about technical analysis, margins, trends, calls, puts, etc. It gave me a big headache and all I wanted to do was to go to sleep. But the chairs were too hard, and the room was too cold, so I had to stay awake and listen. After a while, I began to grasp the meaning of the presenters’ words. They talked about a future world in which there would not be a “middle class”; just the very poor, or the very rich. It sounded as if that future would be closer than we think. When they queried the participants to determine which class we wanted to be in, I found myself raising my hand with those who want to be rich. Why? Because I suspect that rich is the better option.  7MRGI -¸ZI WXEVXIH XS XEOI Q] RI[ ÁRERGMEP IHYGEtion seriously, I’ve begun to think how very inadequate our educational system is in regards to preparing our kids for a very different world. I don’t know of any traditional public schools that teach students about the power of investing, and then train them in governing rules, philosophies, strategies, and techniques to be successful. It isn’t that our kids haven’t ÁKYVIH WSQI SJ XLMW SYX SR XLIMV S[R´NYWX XLMRO LS[ H]namic the underground markets are. Drug and ammunition XVEHMRK EVI ÂSYVMWLMRK MRHYWXVMIW SR XLI WXVIIX  &MPPMSRW SJ dollars are passing through the hands of individuals—many

of them very young—in regards to illegal trading of goods and services. They are high risk-takers who usually pay a high social price for the crimes they commit while doing business. What would be wrong with teaching children very early how our economic system works, and how they can get their own “piece of the pie” legally? Few young people, especially African-Americans, are clued in to the advantages of saving money—not only to deposit in banks that capitalize on their money at low interest VEXIW[LMGLXLI]YWIXSQEOILYKITVSÁXWFYXXSTYVGLEWI paper assets like stocks, options, and, of course, real estate. Instead, this group can be counted on to be the largest consumers of depreciating assets: cars, clothes, electronic devices, and, yes, big houses (which are not assets but liabilities). We S[IMXXSSYVWIPZIWXSFIGSQIFIXXIVIHYGEXIHEFSYXÁRERGI and to educate our own kids if the school system will not. Projections for our country’s economic future are not KVIEX8LMWKIRIVEXMSRMXMWTVSNIGXIH[MPPFIXLIÁVWXSRIXS do worse, not better, than the generation that has preceded it. You only have to look around to see the evidence of that prediction taking place; adult children cannot leave home, many couples are taking care of their parents while raising families, grandparents have to live with grandchildren, etc. The picture is not pretty. We can do better. We MUST do better. What we don’t know can surely hurt us.

My suggestions are:

1. Stop watching Oprah, Judge Joe Brown, and the Soaps and start paying attention to the channels that focus on the economy. 2. Become familiar with money and market “terminology”. 3. Take stock of your own economic picture projected out 5 to ]IEVW8EOIGLEVKISJ]SYVÁRERGMEPJYXYVI23; We can all be rich—not just spiritually, but also economically. It takes knowledge and courage to get in the game to win. Let’s go for it!

Author of from Dunbar to Destiny is currently working on a Children’s book. She and her husband Leo live in Austin, TX


A SLICE OF HEAVEN By Shandeka Tinsley Cooking a great feast to share with family and friends is one of the many joys of the holidays that can be stressful. There are many different things to remember and so many things that can go wrong. However, when everything goes right, it’s one of the best holiday gifts of all. Planning a menu and making a check list is the key to a successful feast. Try not to plan big unless you have help in the kitchen, you want to take your time and put your heart and soul into every dish.

Cooler You may want to keep an ice-down large cooler in your garage to hanHPIXLISZIVÂS[XLEX]SYVVIJVMKIVEtor can not handle.

Plan a menu Make a shopping list. and collect ads to see if any of your ingredients are on sale. (Hint: Wal-Mart will ad match)

Shop early Stores run out quickly and you do not want to drive from store to store. Spice up store bought items by adding an unexpected tasteful touch to food or beverage it’s easy and the least expensive.

How to Bake

Prep-work Get your teenagers involved let them help do the prepwork to save time. Get off to a good start by allowing for more time than you actually need to start cooking your meal.

When baking cakes, cookies, and pie crust XV]YWMRKTEWX]ÂSYVMRWXIEHSJEPPTYVTSWI ÂSYV=SY¸PP JEPP MR PSZI 1EOI WYVI [LIR baking that your butter, milk and eggs are all room temperature. Eat before you start baking or cooking, this will help you from sampling and getting full before you are done.

Shandeka is the owner of a Slice of Heaven Southern baked goods in Tucson, Arizona contact:

My Life

Madam CJ Walker I Compared to

By: Shyana Brown

Madam CJ Walker: born into a world of hate, racism and differences. Shyana Nicole Brown: born into a world of hate, racism and differences. Two different people but both with the same dream: to be successful and change the world. was born on August 18, 1994. I was forced upon a single mother, with three other kids. My siblings and I were all left with no father, but one strong African-American mother who knew how to give her kids the strength, faith and hope they needed to succeed. From the age of seven years old to the age ten, I experienced what has changed my life in so many ways, good and bad. Good because with what happened to me I can help others and bad because it has scarred me and as much as I don't want to look back I know it will always be there. Even with this burden on my shoulders I have managed to get through life with no regrets or revenge, because I know where I have been, where I'm going and what I have to do to get there. Going through many different situations from not having food in my house to meeting new people that would just hurt me; I had one devoted mother who has helped me not be another "lost black child" in America. I only saw my father once when I was little. I thought about why God made me father-less and why every other little girl could be called daddy's little girl but not me. Was it the way the I looked, my mother or maybe it was him? Like Madam CJ Walker I have been through different trials and trivializations, but like her I don't want to be left behind. Madam CJ Walker has been the crutches to many black women who couldn't walk on their own two feet, she knew that being a slave and having no parents was no reason for her to not accomplish her dreams, she wanted to go beyond that and so will I. I have to teach my children, grandchildren, nieces and nephews that being AfricanAmerican is nothing to be ashamed of; instead you have to strive and succeed. Madam CJ has devoted herself to many causes as I wish to do one day. After the Bloody East St. massacre Madam Walker devoted her time and money to trying to make lynching a federal crime, it takes strength to put your own life in danger. I want to do the same, after I accomplish my goals I want to succeed in more. I want to give


....I have built my own factory on my own ground.


he crutch of others, I realize that is what God wants to be my duty and I shall listen. I try everyday to be the crutches for the young women around me, I have been around a lot of bad situations but the eagerness in my heart refuses to let me fall back. Coming from a single mother and looking at the struggles she had to go through I am glad that I can be her crutch. My mother has not had the opportunity to see one of her children graduate, me being the third oldest of four children I realize, this is our success. I will rise up for all those who couldn't and change the world. I have had many people in my life tell me to just stop because I wouldn't make anything of myself, but I can laugh in their face because this is my story and there is more to come. "I am a woman who came from the cotton ÀHOGVRIWKH6RXWK)URPWKHUH,ZDVSURPRWed to the washtub. From there I was promoted to the cook kitchen. And from there I promoted myself into the business of manufacturing hair goods and preparations....I have built my own factory on my own ground." –Madam CJ Walker

Shyana Brown is a Junior at High Tech High Media Arts in San Diego, CA.



I was attending a mixer about a couple of months ago, hosted by Gwen Pierce of The Chocolate Voice. I had the opportunity to speak about my novel, Among Pigeons(www.

“...let’s not love in word or in tongue, but in deed and in truth.” Let our deeds give the homeless reason to hope and believe and succeed all the way back home. Hero/Heroine - a man or woman distinguished by exceptional courage and nobility and strength. Seems to me, that for a homeless person to strive for tomorrow when all seems lost takes courage and strength. Their nobility is hidden in the mess that surrounds and covers them. My name is Lawrence Wood and I am John's voice( Photo courtesy of:



CHARGE BY  PHONE  888.512.SHOW  ::  MUST  BE  21+ VIEJAS  CASINO  ::  5000  WILLOWS  RD.,  ALPINE,  CA  91901



CHARGE BY  PHONE  888.512.SHOW  ::  MUST  BE  21+ VIEJAS  CASINO  ::  5000  WILLOWS  RD.,  ALPINE,  CA  91901

Towerof power by Gwen Pierce

With 43 years in the music business and a string of hit records including; “You’re Still a Young Manâ€? and, “So Very Hard to Go,â€? Emilio Castillo, Founder of the urban soul group Tower of Power tells TCV in a phone interview, what distinguishes and artist from a musician is staying true to your sound! TCV: I read that you’re originally from Detroit. How did growing up in a city that’s known for its rich culture in music shape you as a musician and, how did it develop your preference for your particular style of music? Emilio: We had a lot of friends that were into music before Motown, like Dinah Washington, Ella Fitzgerald, and Elvis Presley. One of my favorite groups that my parents loved was the Platters. My mother said that at six years old I could sing “Only Youâ€? verbatim. (Laughs) When we moved to San Francisco when I was eleven it was a completely different dynamic; it was culture shock and I didn’t have any friends so, my friend became the radio. My Dad told me XLEX - RIIHIH XS Ă KYVI WSQIXLMRK SYX UYMGOP] to keep myself off the streets or, I was never coming out of my room again. My brother and I said, ‘we want to play music Dad!’ And he said, “Get in the car.â€? He took us straight to the music store and said, “Anything you want.â€? At that time my Dad was working in a club called Nero’s Nook where he would take us to see show bands perform. I noticed that the coolest guy was always the sax player, the one up front in the spotlight with the solo. So, I pointed to the sax and my brother the drums. We came home that day and started a band. On the east bay over on the Oakland side where I lived, Sly Stone was a disc jockey and soul music was the thing. Of course Motown by then was booming over the airways. We decided to be a soul band and my Mom said, “If you’re going to be a soul band you have to call yourselves the Motown’s because you’re from Detroit.â€? That was our original name. TCV: Where did the name Tower of Power originate from? Emilio: My partner Stephen (Doc) Kupta who everybody calls The Funky Doctor was a roadie for the Loading Zone, a hippie soul band and they were quite famous at the time, headlining at big fairs and we were the opening act. (SG[EWXLIĂ VWXXSGSRZMRGIQIXSWXEVX[VMXing songs and, he also said to me, “we’re getting olderâ€? (I was seventeen at the time) and we need to play at the Fillmore auditorium. Well, we knew we couldn’t get in to that scene with a name like the Motown’s and looking like we looked. The Fillmore was all about groups like:

Tower of Power in the early days

8LI +VEXIJYP (IEH ERH 8LI ,SPHMRK 'SQTER] ÂĽÂĽ EPP SJ XLI [IMVH names. So we decided to grow our hair long and started dressing like hippies to get the chance to play at the Fillmore. So one day, we were doing some recording and we were on a break when I saw a list of poXIRXMEPFERHREQIW%PPSJXLIQ[IVI[IMVHRSRISJXLIQVIEPP]Ă XYW and then I saw, Tower of Power and said, “Hey guys how about this, it kind of describes us. (Laughs) So basically, I took it from a list. TCV: What’s been the biggest challenge for the group? Emilio:3RISJXLIWXVYKKPIW[ILEHEXĂ VWX[EWEVSYRH;IWXEVXIH touring the nation and our song became a hit not only on pop radio but on black radio so, we got hired at a place in Boston called the “Sugar Shackâ€? which was where James Brown, The Temptations, and all of the black acts performed. So the next thing you know, it was canceled and we were like wow! We had a night off and Doc and I decided to head over to the Sugar Shack to see what was happening. The Sugar Shack was located in the Roxbury section similar to Harlem. We asked for the owner who was this Jewish guy, and he said, “Boys come on in.â€? He took YWVMKLXYTXSXLISJĂ GILIHMHR¸XXEOIYWXLVSYKLXLIGPYF;LIR[I KSXXSLMWSJĂ GILIWEMHÂľ-[EWWSI\GMXIHEFSYXLEZMRK]SYKY]WTIVJSVQ here, everyone wanted to hear you play.â€? And we said, “Yeah what happened?â€? He said, “I got the photo and I can’t hire a bunch of white boys playing in here, we’d have a riot.â€? You have to understand, we come

“Cause I Love You” where they sampled his voice and sped it up to where it sounded like a chipmunk. Recently, someone sent me a link of him live on stage, and he sounded good. At one point in his show he says, “this rapper sampled my song and sped it up and I was like what does this guy think he’s doing making fun of me. The next thing I know I’m getting checks for $5,000, $10,000, $20,000 and before you know it, I’m singing oooh, eeeh, oooh ah ah. I’ll sing whatever you want if you’re gonna send those checks like that!” I think sampling is a good thing and it’s healthy. (Laughs)

Photo: Leighton Media

from the bay area where color has no boundaries you know what I mean? But there were still racial tensions on the east coast. TCV: Interesting. Music has had a huge impact on the young and the old, what’s your advice for young people trying to make it in the business today? Emilio: Well as I said before stay true to your self. I think it’s important not to chase trends, they come and go. A lot of these people in the industry today want to get out there and be ego driven, but if you notice they come and go in one or two years whereas, people that take a humble approach have an entire career for years and, I speak from experience. We’re in our 43rd year and still going strong. I had to learn the hard way to live right and the most important thing without a doubt is to stay spiritually aligned. If you’re living right you’re going to feel right, that’s the key to life. Inherently all people know how to do that. TCV: On your latest album “Great American SoulBook” you collaborated with Huey Lewis, there’s a tribute to Soul James Brown and Joss Stone, in your opinion what distinguishes an artist from a musician? Emilio: Well, I would have to say there are great musicians that are artists and what makes them an artist is that they acquire a signature or a voice. I remember a time in our career when we got pressure from the record companies to sound like some of the other bands that were playing on the radio and, we would try to please them since they were the SRIW[LSLEHXLIQSRI]FYXMRXLIÁREPEREP]WMW[IEP[E]WWSYRHIH like a bastardized version of Tower of Power. Finally, we just gave up and stayed true to our sound. TCV: Former band member Lenny Williams has been sampled by hip hop artist Kanye West, what is your opinion on artists sampling and, what are your thoughts on the state of the music industry today? Emilio:;IPP [LIR WEQTPMRK ÁVWX WXEVXIH MX [EW RI[ ERH TISTPI [IVI very indignant. “How dare you take my work of art and change it around and call it yours.” But all of these things come and go. One of the things that we have to reconcile at some point in our lives is that certain things are here to stay; sampling, computers and that type of production. That’s all apart of the fabric of the music industry. The best thing to do is to say it’s here to stay and embrace it. I’ve had a lot of my stuff sampled by hip hop artists because we have a rhythmic band. I had one song recently sampled by Fergie of the Black Eyed Peas and, I can say from a bank account stand point, I’m grateful! (Laughs). I think I know the Lenny Williams song that you’re talking about, it’s probably,

8':1]PEWXUYIWXMSRMWEÁPPMRXLI&PERO-J you could change anything about the music industry what would it be? Emilio: Nothing. There’s a bunch of old school people who use this phrase, “Rap is not music” and I think about when I was under 10 years old and some would say, “Elvis Presley, that’s not music!” That’s some of the greatest music that was ever written. At any given time there’s always really good and really bad music and I wouldn’t change any of it. Let’s be clear, I don’t like to hear songs where there’s the F word here and degrading women and talking about murdering people. I remember one time when Doc and I took a walk down to a soul restaurant and this car went by and we hear, “You #@#@# @#@” and Doc says, “I wonder if in four years someone’s gonna hear that tune and go oooh! That’s my song?! “(Laughs) If an artist wants to take that kind of music and put a positive spin on it, it’s their right. My point is that I wouldn’t change it. It’s just not my cup of tea.

Tower of Power will be performing at Dream Catcher at Viejas on January 7, 2011. For more information visit

call 1-800-847-6537 or 619- 445-5400

Celebration Survival!

By Sonya Fakel man (Original

ly published in the November 2010 issue of the Health y Habits e-Newslet ter).

Even if you love th e holidays, if you’re try- ˆ ing get healthy, th +IXJVMIRHWERHJEQ ose festive gather MP]MRZSPZIHMR ings healthful ac can be a challenge tivities, such as re . Winter holidays m gular walkean ing, to burn family, friends, and calories and relieve yes, a lot of food. stress. =SYQE]ÁRH]SYVW IPJEPMXXPIQSVIWXVI WWIH Practical pa than usual (even if rty tips it’s happy stress), a lit- ˆ tle short on sleep, an ; VMX I HS[RE WTIGMÁGT d maybe a little mor PERSJEGe tion for each ev vulnerable to makin ent. g unhealthy choice s. Does this mean yo ˆ )EX SRI SJ ]SYV u have to stay ho  ÁZI 1IHMJEWX me Meals right be and hide from all fore you leave so yo the fun? No way! u’re not Just hungry. like you plan what you’re going to we ar, ˆ you can anticipate -JMX¸WTSXPYGOFVMR holiday gatherings KELIEPXL]HMWL and that you can think ahead. With enjoy, like a beautif a little insight, you ul tray of can fresh veggies navigate parties an . d celebrations and en- ˆ joy yourself while yo =SY GER IEX ]SYV u follow the Habits 0IER  +VIIR of Meal at the ev Health and stick to ent: Fill a small pl the 5 & 1 Plan. ate with fresh vegetables an d add lean protein , General Holiday he such as steamed sh lpers rimp or roasted tu rk ey ˆ br ea st. 0MWX]SYVPSRKVERK ILIEPXLKSEPW ˆ and re-commit to th ;LIR LSWXMRK ER em. IZIRX HIPIKEXI ˆ tasks so you’re no +IXEHIUYEXIWPIITE t ov er wh RH elmed with VI PE\EXMSR handlin stress can be a trigg g food all day. er for going off-plan . ˆ ˆ /IIT ]SYV JEZSVMXI %JXIV E LSPMHE] QIEP EX ]SYV  VIEH]XSIEX ho Medifast Meals with m e, se nd leftovers packin you, in your car, yo g with guests ur so you’re not purse, or your brief tempted. case so you can ea t on ˆ schedule wherever :SPYRXIIVXSFIEH you are. IWMKREXIHHVMZˆ er—it’s a great excu 'LSSWI XS QEOI SV se to av oi  d calorie-ladFY ] LSPMHE] en alcoh treats that are ea olic beverages. sier for you to re sist. ˆ (Hate coconut? Mak 7XE] SGGYTMIH F] e macaroons.)  IRNS]MRK XLI ˆ company of those 'LI[EPP ]SYVJSSH ar ou nd yo G u, preferably EV IJ YP P] ERH at a distanc mindfully. e from the food. ˆ ˆ /MRHP] VIQMRH JVM 7LS[SJJ ]SYV[IMK IRHW ERH JEQ- KV LXPSWW[MXLE ily that you’d rather IE XP SS OMRK SYXÁX ERH PIX not get food gifts th  XLI GSQTPMis ments motivate year. If you receive you to keep up th them, thank the giv e good er work! (Who and later pass the fo knows? You may od on to someone els inspire e. someone else to “Re-gifting” is okay get healthy too!) when it keeps you on plan! ˆ Adjusting your min -J]SYIEXWSQIXLMRK dset SJJTPERNYWX Yo get back on schedu u may feel like bein le and continue—do g “on Plan” over th n’t holiday season e lose precious time means you’ll be m by waiting until tom issing or- out on your row to start over. favorite foods. That’ s a norˆ mal feeling. 4MGOJYRLSPMHE]IZ IR XW XL EX EVIR¸X food-centered, such as volunteering, craft s, Yet once you sta hayrides, parades, rt seeing results an decorating parties, d feelan d ing the effects of he sporting events. althy weight loss, yo u’ll learn that suppor ting your long-range health goals isn’t about deprivation, but about creating health for yourself.

They’re back!!!! Yes I’m talking about those November –December months; where some folks make the decision to go on an eating frenzy that just may resemble “Black Friday”. InWXIEHSJÁPPMRKXLIMVEVQWERH bask carts with gifts for family and friends they eat everything that isn’t nailed down. The only words that come to mind are “drive by grazing!” Read on….

Think of it this way: Rather than giving up holiday sugar and fat, you are giving yourself a wonderful gift for the holidays: vibrant health!

All that r givou fo . We Y k n tha ou have the r, we Fathe s all that Yr granted will ing u ot take fo life. We plex will ne things in our com s by simpl through mountain , we move nges and ord Jesus the challe in God. Le giving us e of faith You for th r guarante tiny thank Spirit, ou fts and des r all Holy anifold gi ank You fo You the m h You. Th ings that will thoug any bless daily. We anks the mw upon us e You th besto ue to giv n. continraise. Ame and p r:



I Have By Dr. Amanda Goodson

ometimes a blessing may be blaringly obvious, however there are those that are hidden in the simple things or complex circumstances of life. We should prepare our attitudes to accept the simple gifts of life and conquer the greater challenges with zeal, organized direction, faith, and love. We should also be mindful that the simple joys of life that enhance our opportunities, exemplify our abilities, and lead us into the greater things ahead. Remember, God has a plan for SYVPMZIWETYVTSWIXLEXMWSZIVÂS[MRKMRPSZI)ZIR the most complex situations bring hope to this world as our Savior works out our maturity in Him. As we humbly walk in faith, our challenges will surface and magnify the glory and goodness of God all around us. His endless mercies are promised to all of us. I am reminded of a wonderful, heartfelt, story that highlights our opportunities to teach our children kindness and generosity through love and patience. A mother asked her son to make up his bed before KSMRKXSWGLSSP,ITYXSYXLMWLERHERHWEMHGSRÁdently to his mother “pay me”. “For what?” asked the mother, as she continued to get ready for work. The young boy said, “You know – for making my bed”. The mother said, “Ok”, how much will it cost me?” 8LIFS]I\GMXIHP]WXEXIHµÁJXIIRHSPPEVW¶8LIQSXLer said, “Ok, that is a good price for making up a bed” as she reached into a zip lock bag which she took from her top dresser drawer. She pulled out three GVYQTPIHÁZIHSPPEVFMPPWERHKEZIXLIQXSXLIWQMPing young boy. After he made up his bed, the mother went into his room to inspect his work and said, “If you pull that right corner a little more to straight-

en up the bed spread, I think you will have done a great job!” Then she said “By the way, that shirt and TERXWXLEX]SYLEZISRGSWXÁJXIIRHSPPEVW[LMGL]SY should pay in order to wear them to school today.” The young boy swallowed, looked embarrassed and said “ok, sorry mom…I never thought about it that way, will you forgive me?” The mother said, “Yes, totally forgiven.” She looked into his dark brown eyes and said, “You should never ask mommy for payment for things that you should do, always remember all that I have is yours for free!” We often expect payment for a job well done. We want awards, recognition, and praise from peers, parents, friends, bosses, or others. However, there are circumstances and conditions when a cheerful thank you, an acknowledging smile, a handshake, a pat on XLIFEGOSVEGSVHMEPLYKWYJÁGIWEWTE]QIRXJSVE good deed and brings joy to the giver and recipient. Sometimes we take for granted the gifts richly given to us like peace of mind, good health, food, family and friends, the ability to see, hear, even to read. Our Heavenly Father, the Father of lights gives us all that He owns. I encourage you to concentrate on the goodness of God and His manifold blessings, make out a list of the good things (the blessings) in your life. The list will surprise you! Review it and add to it through out the year. How exciting and awesome are God’s manifold blessings that are bestowed upon us everyday. God promises a great inheritance to all people who walk in faith in the Word of God - eternal life. Remember, all that God has is yours. As we walk in forgiveness, expect it, look for it, and believe it.

Dr. Amanda Goodson is the Pastor of Two Churches, Phillips Chapel and Trinity Temple, C.M.E. both located in Tucson, Arizona and she is the Founder of Never The Same Ministries

Aging with the U of A by Ernie McCray

I recently enjoyed the honor of a lifetime: addressing the University of Arizona’s Class of ‘60 with my take on our times at our alma mater. My classmates and I showed up brimming with youth and Rhythm and Blues and Rock and Roll, more than ready to “Go! Go! Wildcats! Go!” and the school welcomed us with open arms. In the background, besides the up tempo music, the likes of I Love Lucy had us laughing crazily and we relied on Ed Sullivan giving us a “Really good show” every Sunday but the world, at large, was in no way like a picnic on a carefree sunny day.The Korean War had ended just a few years before we arrived. The Little Rock Nine, black students in Little Rock, were escorted to school by federal troops because of Jim Crow’s racist approach to human relations at the time. The Soviets released Sputnik and our country launched Explorer I and the space race was on along with a cold war wherein one day one of our U-2 spy planes was downed in Soviet air space and the possibility of the world being blown away popped up in the conversations of the day. It was all a bit frightening and enormously exciting to me and I wanted to learn as much about this complex and troubled world as was possible. But what was happening in reality wasn’t explored enough in our daily studies it didn’t seem to me. That bothered me but at the same time it was okay because I learned early on that the university had as much to learn as we students did and it was the role of each to bring the other along. I mean I wasn’t on the campus a day before a coach said to me: “Wow, you don’t have to take English X?” as though something must have been wrong with the test that decided [LIVIMR)RKPMWL-[SYPHÁXFIWX%JXIVXLIÁVWXWIQIWXIV[LIR I told him I had passed English, he practically needed CPR on his chest. But he kept his eyes on me and when I graduated he had put his notions to rest. And I let him out of the place where I held my prejudices. At best he and I learned something about humanity, about how we can set our biases free. You can’t ask more than that of co-learners. While working with a number of community activists to end Tucson’s discriminatory Laws I brought up our struggles in a Political Science class where we were learning how a bill passes through Congress and the prof said it wasn’t relevant to what we were doing. I heard that kind of sentiment a few other times related to other issues but somehow the prospective teacher in me felt that making lessons relevant to a student’s life was a must in creating a dynamic learning environment. Working as an educator, over time, I know that now to be true. In spite of such instances, pursuing a degree at the University of Arizona was a rich experience for me. Both through what it provided that was good and through what it needed to improve on, it was instrumental in creating within me a keen curiosity about the world that hasn’t diminished with age. And I am so proud that my school, in its 125th year, is aging in the same way and is highly respected in the world of higher learning today. I’m stoked that although it once looked the other way when it came to the diversity at play on its grounds, it now stands its ground for justice and fair play, with ethnic and gender studies and a desire to reach out to the global community. It now works diligently to make everyone feel that they have a vital role to play in our world - no matter their color or ethnicity or whether they choose to or not to worship or pray or no matter whether they’re straight or gay or questioning their sexuality in any way.

My beloved U of A of now stands as a beacon iety enlightenment for a soc it that still, too often, when nd comes to human understa it e lov ing, loses its way. I will t of and cherish it for the res e tru my days, for it has stayed !” wn to the spirit of “Bear! Do it in all its advancements as a is It has aged along the way. 125 year old beauty.

Soaking Up Love at Home

Well if the honor of addressing the Class of '60 at the University of Arizona, as we celebrated our 50 Year Reunion, wasn't enough - well, on that same trip home I received another honor of a lifetime: the UA Black Alumni's Outstanding Alumni Achiever Award. To be honored by my people, people who have come down the same road as I, a road upon which we had to struggle to hold our heads up high with Jim Crow standing in our way as we passed by - well, I don't have the words to properly portray how this honor makes me feel. It's so deeply soothing and warming to me, so sunny and breezy, so funky and easy like a Jazz Crusaders song or a Maya Angelou poem. It made me go: "Is this real?" or "Is this an episode of the Twilight Zone, where an old dude is recognized for his achievements in life and by chance the ceremony is held where he began his life?" See, what made this particular award so special was that it was like being honored in my home because the dirt beneath the building, the Dunbar Cultural Center, where the ceremony was held, is part of the landscape upon which I was born. The center was once my elementary and junior high school, Tucson's all black school before the schools were desegregated in 1951. We were gathered smack dab in the middle of my Hood and that made me feel extraordinarily good. I arrived on that block on April 18th, 1938. Along with my length and weight, COLORED was boldly X]TIH SR Q] FMVXL GIVXMÁGEXI XLEX ZIV] HE] [LMGL QIERX - LEH FIXXIV start "achieving" right away. I lived at 901 North Tenth Avenue in a duplex where if you walked in the front door one second before two you could lollygag and be at the backdoor before the clock struck two. Small doesn't even begin to describe that place. When we moved around the corner to 920 North Perry I had the biggest smile on my face and a little more space to stretch my skinny legs and questioning mind. Across the street, from the wee apartment, at the time, there resided a mean chow dog named Rusty who made people grab their butts and hope they still had one after they had walked by. Across the street, going the other way, there lived the principal of Dunbar Elementary and Junior High. Morgan Maxwell. We called him, lovingly, and sometimes not so adoringly, because of his thick glasses, Eagle Eye. "Be the Best" was our motto, and I bought into the concept as a way to go. It's all I know. And isn't part of the game of life going for what you know? So, don't you know, what I was being honored for on

for on that cozy warm Friday was a continuation of how I lived my life, as they say, back in the day. Like there was many a day my teachers let me work with a group and we would laugh and learn in a variety of ways always in a spirit of play. I'm still doing that today. I wrote non-stop in class when I was supposed to or when I wasn't supposed to and I wrote bits for the stage when we had one of our many talent shows and that's the way my life still goes. At the old Mt. Calvary, which was down the street, I'd do my thing in little plays and vignettes and now I still act although no longer at every chance I get. Was athletic and in shape then and that's the way, from then to now, it's always been. And activism. It's in my genes. If something seemed unfair to me, like Jim Crow running wild in my reality, well, I would engage myself in some kind of activity to turn the situation around and I still do, loudly and proudly, in surround sound. So the tribute paid me was so appealing in that it respected my very existence as a human being extending from now back to my very beginning. There can be no bigger EGORS[PIHKIQIRXXLERXLEX-QIERXLEX WÂ] that's cool, that's ill, that's sweet, that's tight, that's phat. So I humbly said to the gathering: 8LERO]SY%RHFIGEYWIMXMWWTIGMÁGEPP]JVSQ you, the UABA, this honor will reside in me with passion and pride to my very last day and, by the way, I hope that's a long time away but that's not for me to decide so I'll enjoy it day to day." And the next day the Arizona Wildcat football team blew the Washington Huskies away on Homecoming Day. Ah, life doesn't get any sweeter than that. What a weekend.

A native of Tucson, Arizona Ernie McCray is a retired Principal for The San Diego 9RMÁIH7GLSSP(MWXVMGX


Tonye Patano (Mama Nadi) is making her La Jolla Playhouse Debut starring in RUINED. Ms. Patano garnered multiple nominations and an award for her performance as Heylia James on Showtime’s Weeds. The talented actress took a quick break from rehearsal to interview with The Chocolate Voice by phone.

Tonye Patano

TCV: I love the spelling of your name Tonye (pronounced Tony) is that your birth given name? TP: My mother literally gave me my full name as is, a version of her stage name. When she came to California in the sixties to become an actress, she couldn’t quite get her foot in the door as a black actress because she was so fair skinned. So, she took her maiden name which was Marsh, a “black” name and, she always loved the name Tony. In Spanish, I believe marsh means pantano and she named herself Tony Pataño which she felt gave it somewhat SJEÂEMVXLMW[E]WLIGSYPHFIGEWXEW0EXMR-XEPMERSV&PEGO%RH[LIR-[EWFSVRWLINYWXXLSYKLXMX[EWWYGLE beautiful name so she literally gave me her full stage name as my birth name, Tonye Teresa Pataño. As an honor to her I kept the spelling and tell everyone that the (e) is silent.

TCV: Do you have an acting background and what is your formal training? TP:When I was six, my mother decided to get out of the “rat race” of the business and, we moved from Los Angeles back to Columbus, OH where my mother still performed in community theatre. And, long before I was born at age seventeen my mother went away with a troupe that traveled with the Chitlin Circuit called Solace Green and the Brown Skinned Models. I guess you could say it’s in the blood. As far as my formal training, I did my undergrad at a wonderful school called Otterbein College in Ohio. From there, I went on to graduate school at Brandeis University, in Boston and lived in New York after. 8':,S[HMJJIVIRXMWMXXSEGXMREÁPQSVXIPIZMWMSRZIVsus theatre? TP:;LEX-EP[E]WXIPPTISTPIMWXLEXMRÁPQERHXIPIZMWMSR your performance is the director and the editor’s medium. You present a performance, and that performance is shaped by how it’s put together, and how it’s matched up with the other person in the scene. Whereas on stage it’s a unique experience unto it self, that night, that performance,that EYHMIRGIERHXLIÁREPGLEVEGXIVMWXLIEYHMIRGI[LSWSVX of determines the outcome of the performance. Again, it’s uniquely magical because that performance will never happen again. TCV: Tell me about your current project RUINED at La Jolla Playhouse and, your role as Mama Nadi? TP: Writer Lynn Nottage along with producer Kate Whoriskey were talking about the idea of an adaptation of Brecht’s Mother Courage and her Children set in the war-ravaged nation, of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Lynn ended up in Uganda where they interviewed thousands of victims who shared their compelling and horVMÁGWXSVMIWSJEFYWI%JXIVPMWXIRMRKXSXLIWXSVMIWSJXLIWI women, the result was the creation of RUINED.

Mama Nadi represents a woman who in a sense capitalizes on the Congolese war by running a bar/brothel which allows anyone to come and seek refuge. Her business caters to the men who commit these atrocities outside of her bar, and [SQIR[LSFEWMGEPP]LEZIÂIHJVSQXLIEFYWI8LIMHIEMW that these men would pay for food, drink and sex when in all actuality they can just take it. Since the men are making this choice shows a bit of humanity and that everyone suspends the horror that’s been created on their own or, that has been created against them as a result of the war. This play really speaks to the resilience of the human spirit, and how even at our most heinous, it shows how people strive to reach for humanity. TCV: What obstacles have you faced in the business being an African American female? TP: I’m one of those people that don’t buy into a way of thinking. For me it’s always about the role, the person, the story. With RUINED it’s bigger than just Mama Nadi; it’s just a way of illuminating more of the story. As for playing Heylia on Weeds people would say, ‘what about the stereotype?’ Stereotypes are the things that other people label you with so that they can dismiss you. When you move beyond the stereotype you can see the person. TCV: What piece of advice would you give African American actresses starting out in the business? TP:Be observant and tell the stories that you want the world to know. And you don’t have to limit yourself to our cultural Diaspora. We are all on this planet and what we contribute has to do with our own personal point of view. It’s important to reach beyond and understand how we are all connected, which I think is important for this show (RUINED). And so, it’s important for us to tell our own stories and not shy away from reaching beyond and understanding other cultures. TCV: What’s the best piece of advice you received regarding your career? TP: It’s probably more of the advice that I’ve discovered, and that is to take ownership of yourself, your choices and your career. Every experience that you have in life contributes to your career and your life as an artist. And so, if you look at it that way, and engage with people in that way, it just adds to your artistry and creates more tools in your arsenal and more things you have access to create as an artist. RUINED is now playing at La Jolla Playhouse thru December 19th, for tickets: (858) 550-1010 or visit

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Want to know what’s going on in your city? Check out some fun events coming up! 1




9 12



November 21 thru December 19th! 2910 La Jolla Village Drive La Jolla, CA (858) 550-1010

2. Storyville

November 13th thru December 12, San Diego Repertory Theatre, Horton Plaza, San Diego, CA

3. Holiday Nights

Cost: $2-Children under12, $7-Adult and $10-General 7366 North Paseo Del Norte Tucson, AZ

4. Black Nativity, The Musical Common Ground Theatre December 3rd thru December 19th Educational Cultural Complex (ECC) San Diego, CA 619-527-5256

5. Balboa Park December Nights December 3rd and 4th Casa Del Prado San Diego, CA

6. Deck The Halls With Deltas

11. Diamond Literary Festival Association For Writers, Self Publishers, Authors & Editors

December 11 Special Guest Crystal Stark JW Marriott Starr Pass Blvd. Tucson, AZ (520) 977-8930

7. Downtown Parade of Lights December 18 Tucson, AZ (520) 837-6504

8. Dancing in the Streets Presents“Baile De Los Cascanueses” (The Nutcracker Ballet)

December 26 1:00 pm and 6:00 pm Pima Community College Center for the Arts (520) 206-6986 or visit

9. Kwanzaa Celebration Kujichagulia

December 27th 6 pm - 9 pm World Beat Center San Diego Cost: FREE 619-230-1190

January 8, 2011 Cost: $25 Educational Cultural Complex (ECC) San Diego, California (619) 913-0626

12. 16th Annual Martin Luther King Jr. Community Breakfas t January 17 Hosted by United African American Ministerial Action Council (UAAMAC) Joe & Vi Jacobs Center (619) 264-1213


Friday, February 11 at 8:00p Dream Catcher at Viejas VIP Floor $41.00, Balcony $31.00, GA Standing Room Only $31.00


1. La Jolla Playhouse Presents Ruined


10. Tower of Power January 7 Viejas Casino San Diego, CA

Email us Out and Abouts in your city at

“This is a play you must see.� – Wall Street Journal

Winner of the 2009 Pulitzer Prize for Drama

    “A powerhouse drama set in the real worldâ€? – USA Today

“A clear-eyed celebration of endurance� – New York Times

“A crackling thriller, with humor, plot twists and lots of humanity� – NY1

“Rich in incident, in character, in conflict, suspense� – The Seattle Times



LYNN NOTTAGE LIESL TOMMY A co-production with The Huntington Theatre Company and Berkeley Repertory Theatre




TCV December Cover  
TCV December Cover  

The Chocolate Voice Magazine is a multicultural magazine focusing on articles that sweeten the soul!