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Winter Editon 2012 Vol. 3

S U M Sophistication Urban Minds

In this issue: VanJess Exclusive Interview

The Power of Networking

and much more!!!

.Copyright 2012 Sophistication Urban Minds, Inc

CONTENTS .BOWLING FOR LIFE PAGE 14 INTERNATIONAL CORNER PAGE 18 NEGATIVITY IN CARTOONS PAGE 42 ARTIST SPOLIGHT: ROYAL TEAZ... PAGE 44 Letter from the Editor This issue is dedicated to the music industry. The year 2011 and the beginning of 2012 was a remarkable one. We lost several talented icons within the industry. Heavy D, Nate Dogg, Etta James and Whitney Houston were among the greats that we lost. They inspired generation after generation to contiune to go after their dreams and that hard work and presistence pays off. In this issue we highlight young artists who are on the verge to success. Be encourage and contiune to work hard on accomplishing your dreams. Don’t take no for an answer.


Cover Story: VanJess Page 34

With Love, Naomi MzNay Bonman


LIVING OUT LOUD WITH MOCA Hey Moca, I’ve been battling an abusive relationship for quite some time. Not so much physical, but more mental and emotional. But by no means am I trying to say that any type of abuse is acceptable. I have started my journey to reclaim ME. I’ve moved out into my own place, I’ve found a job, I’m seeing a therapist, and I’m rebuilding my relationship with GOD. But in the midst of all this I can’t seem to shake this guy. We have kids and I’m having a difficult time trying to balance this separate but together relationship with the kids. What should I do, how should I do it? Finding ME, Denver, CO Whew!!! Honey, rarely do you find Moca speechless but this situation is very touchy and any advice that someone gives you is always going to be ‘easier said than done’, but you also know that I wouldn’t be Moca if I didn’t have an opinion and have something to say. :~) First things first, PRAY! PRAY FOR STRENGTH, DISCERNMENT, AND GUIDANCE. Secondly, let me say Congratulations on the steps you have made. I can only imagine the transformation you are going through and to know that the outcome will be so much better than the beginning has to give you something to work toward. I recently mentioned to a friend of mine that it may appear as if I have it all together but it’s ONLY because GOD’s GRACE and MERCY sustains me. What I mean is, it’s easy to look like I have no problems because I allow GOD to do what He has already promised to do..take care of me (without my interference). I say this to say that this journey you are on will not be easy from a human standpoint but if you continue to allow GOD to do what He has promised he will do then each step will become easier and easier. It can sometimes be difficult to move from a situation if you continue to place yourself in those same surroundings. In your case because you have kids you have no choice. So, I would say only do what’s necessary. Make sure you and your kids are a priority in each decision you make. Find a way to use your interaction with him as a way to assist in your growth. Maybe you can make it a point to limit conversation to just issues dealing with the kids, initially. Whenever negativity arises work on your peace by not reacting but allowing GRACE and MERCY to sustain you. The most important component of this whole ordeal is the kids. I’m not sure how old they are but trust and believe they know what is going on. If separation is what you have decided--be separated. Of course we don’t know what the future holds but a defined relationship has to be more than something you talk about, there has to be action. Whether you decide to get back with him or not this step in the ‘transformation of ME’ you spoke of is necessary. It’s a process, and finding balance is something needed for not only you but the kids and him as well. I’m not speaking from experience of your situation but I am speaking from experience from any situation where you may need to MOVE. When you are surrounded by negative friends, family, coworkers, neighbors, etc, MOVE. Don’t allow the negativity to infest in you, MOVE. Complete separation helps you ‘to reclaim you.’ You have one life to live; don’t be afraid to MOVE in it to make it a better life for you. I believe that GOD takes us through things because of the choices we make, so this journey is predicated by our decisions. Make the decision to MOVE toward a destiny that GOD has already destined for you. Never allow other people to affect you in such a way that you lose sight of your journey, making MOVES based on them and missing the MOVES that GOD has for you. Where ever this journey takes you don’t forget to allow GOD to MOVE in you and LIVE OUT LOUD!!!!!


Inside’s Moca’s Mind Part 1: The Realization t’s funny how your perception of yourself always varies from those on the outside looking in. Have you ever wondered how you tend to give off a certain vibe or how someone’s constructive criticism of you can be so dead on once you really think about it? What about when your intentions seem to get lost in the delivery of your actions. Yeah, so with the help of some friends and family, I have realized ALL of this about myself in the last few weeks. Needless to say my mind has been in overdrive. ;~) All of my thoughts and debates came to a head when I went to visit my Aunt Martha. In our many discussions about life, specifically guys and relationships, she told me that I’m afraid of ‘commitment.’ This immediately took me by surprise because I have NEVER thought I was scared to commit. In weeks prior I had just realized that I have a problem with using guys to fill voids in my life. I don’t like being by myself, so I keep myself busy with work and all of the different projects I have my hands in. When everything is in order and moving along smoothly, I get bored. So, I then call up a guy friend to hangout with and occupy my time until I get busy again then the cycle repeats. But what I REALLY want is someone consistent. Someone that I can make time for when I’m busy and without question has all my time when I’m not, someone that can enjoy my world and takes the time to create our own, someone that I can grow in my purpose with, the ONE that GOD created just for ME. My aunt brought a whole new light to my behavior and really why my eyes have been closed to the one that GOD has for me. She asked me why was I not in a relationship with any of the guys I talk to and what makes one better than the other. After the typical, I like this about him and that about him it dawn on me. I’m scared, I’m afraid of loving someone that doesn’t love me, I’m scared of putting all of me into a relationship and it is not returned (again). So, I only do so much, I only allow them in enough to enjoy their company but not enough to hurt me if they decide they no longer like my company. I wait for them to meet this secret expectation to prove to me that they are really interested in a relationship and when ‘they don’t’…then ‘I don’t.’ Problem is they never knew they were being tested and therefore couldn’t study to pass. You see, I LOVE hard and with EVERYTHING in me. I have a LOT to offer internally and externally, so many benefits come with me, and it frightens me to think that someone would take advantage of my heart with selfish intentions disguised as interest. So, while I NEVER thought I was afraid of commitment after evaluating my actions it just might be true…lol. Which is so crazy to me because I want to be in a committed relationship with a guy that makes me laugh, has a foundation planted in God, ambitious, intelligent, excepts the man’s role as ‘ Head of the household,’ that looks good in a t-shirt and jeans but knows how to make a suit look sexy, that is understanding of my lifestyle and supportive of my purpose, that is secure, that is easy going, that wants kids, that loves me unconditionally flaws and all. I want FOREVER LOVE…EVERLASTING LOVE…TILL DEATH DO US PART LOVE. But I have realized that in order for God to show me this perfect guy I have to be willing to REALLY take the risk. No half stepping, no testing the waters, it has to be a complete step into the relationship. Which means being honest with him and I. Whew!!! I think this was a very BIG first step!!!!!! People say admittance is half the battle. Dang, I’m still in shock that after all these years I’m REALLY afraid of commitment…CRAZY!!! These are the things YOU can find out about YOURSELF if YOU keep LIVING OUT LOUD!!!!!



Be Still Has someone ever told you, “What’s for you is for you.”? Have you ever wondered how do you know? Not so much how ‘they’ know but how to decipher ‘what’s for you.’ I mean what GOD really intended for you. It can be difficult in the physical world to determine the written definition of some words let alone trying to determine what’s right in the spiritual realm of things. I say the best way to make sure is…..BE STILL. You see GOD doesn’t always yell and jump about to get our attention. There are times when he quietly nudges us into the right direction. But if we are not paying attention or we are focused on signs that are not of GOD we miss it and spend valuable time battling against our destiny. So, I say again…..BE STILL. Just as some believe angels are forever present assisting us with the will of GOD, the devil is also forever present. The devil’s job is to deceive by any means necessary. So, while you may have been offered that promotion that pays more money, it requires longer hours. God may not have that for you and instead would rather you keep your position that allows you more time to spend with your family, who in turn may need your physical support as oppose to your monetary support. In order to evaluate all of these things you need to do one thing first…….BE STILL. When I had this vision for Creative Moca Entertainment I knew GOD intended this for me but I was slow to move because I didn’t quite know how He wanted me to go about it. But I knew that once I started it and I didn’t follow through with it I would never have another chance. My connection with my college friend and business partner (Na’La Productions was our first company), LaZandrea Porter, gradually started to re-blossom (if that’s a word) and I met the talented and driven Kirsten Goodwin. Things started falling in place. So much so that I had to step back and……BE STILL for a minute, re-evaluate the direction I was going and who I was taking with me. Because everyone is not going to see YOUR vision and you have to determine what role people are suppose to play in YOUR vision. The successes Creative Moca Entertainment has had as a company is all because we (Zan and I) always take a moment to…….BE STILL and listen before we move in any directions. If you are in transition in life and dealing with making some changes or moving on let Moca suggest………….BE STILL. And then when people tell you, “What’s for you is for you.” You can say with certainty, “I know!” MOCA :~)

**If YOU have something YOU want MOCA to speak on YOU can email her at All correspondence are confidential**

Bucket List We made it!!!! Another decade, another year, another day to get it right and make a difference!!! Are you excited about the opportunity? I am!!!! So much so I have created a list of things I MUST do by the end of the year. A Bucket List. Now, I know a Bucket List is suppose to be things you want to do before you die (kick the bucket) but I’m creating it as a ‘yearly goal’ for me. Things that I MUST do by years end in my personal, professional, and spiritual life. You can join me and we can check things off our list as the year progresses. I’m getting excited already. (smile) PERSONAL LIFE 1.

Be financially stable and in the process of purchasing my FIRST home.


Overcome MYSELF and allow the man that God has for me to show his self.


Go to Hawaii


Go to Dubai


Utilize what GOD has given me to grow, encourage others and follow through to the end to see the final results


Double if not more the revenue generated last year for Creative Moca Entertainment

2. Advance to the next level in my Delta Career 3. Allow Moca to speak to the masses because she has something to say. (smile) 4.

Brand me and put as much effort as I do for others into me. Come from behind the curtain onto the stage. YAY!!!!


Commit to at least two projects to give back to the community that has supported Creative Moca Entertainment


Stop and allow GOD to make the first move


Use my life as a testimony


Become involved in a local church


Fellowship and grow in The Word with other Christians


Create a quiet moment in my day for peace and reflection

In creating My Bucket List I made direct and firm statements because the tongue is powerful and we must speak things into existence. Throughout the year I will come back to this list and see just how much I have accomplished. Now, I want you to join me, so create your OWN “Bucket List” and send it to You can encourage me and I can encourage you. It doesn’t have to be broken down like mine but I do want to encourage all of you to set goals and work toward accomplishing them. One of the best feelings in life is achievement. And with ‘your’ Bucket List nobody determines that feeling but YOU. I’m excited about taking this journey with you!! ‘Living Out Loud’ gives you the freedom to……………………….. Lesson Learned DREAMS put into ACTION becomes your REALITY!!!!


2012 New Years Resolutions: How to Keep them By. Tamara Jackson & Shannon Morris



t is December 26; the day after Christmas. For the past three months you have engaged in festive holiday activities with your closest family and friends. Now the last days of the year are steadily approaching and you begin to reflect on the past 12 months. Initially, your reflections may be joyous and filled with fond intimacies and heartfelt laughter. Then reality sets in. You begin to think how you still haven’t lost those 20 pounds. This is the third year in a row that you haven’t made it home. You tried; you really tried to make it to church every Sunday. It would be nice to think positive everyday but so much happened this year. You still haven’t forgiven him. You still haven’t finished your book. You would love to travel more. The list can go on and on and on. So naturally your solution is to come up with a New Year’s Resolution! The best of us plan down to the second when the resolution will be set in place. Motivation, dedication and perseverance are at their best. However, for most people the high does not last long. The number one biggest mistake is that people set unrealistic goals for themselves. There is a reason that the same resolution you set for yourself last year did not come to pass. My advice, don’t make one. Most people get wrapped up in the excitement and challenge of a New Year’s Resolution. At this time of year people become extremely ambitious. It’s a new year which means new beginnings. The atmosphere is glorious. However, once the ball drops, all the champagne has been drunk, the endless parties have finally ended, and all that is left is sticky champagne. We wake up on January 2nd (some of us January 1st) and realize nothing has changed at all. Work, school, family, and friends become obvious again. A New Year’s Resolution becomes another thing on your to-do-list. The problem with most people is that they live in either the past or the future and sometimes both. They are always thinking what

they have or have not done and what they have yet to do. Why not try living in the present. Don’t make a resolution because it’s the thing to do. Don’t think of it as a resolution at all. If there is something that you want to improve, start that moment. Don’t wait unit the New Year. Begin working on the new you today.

However, if you do decide to make a list of resolutions, here are some ways to keep them for the new 2012 year: 1. Write them down- Take some time to write down your resolutions. It brings you one step closer to achieving them when you put it in words. Keep the list with you in your wallet or purse so easy reference. 2. Recite them- Repetition comes in handy when you want to engrain something in your memory bank. Recite your resolutions out loud makes your goals more realistic. 3. Aim Low- If you aren’t the most ambitious person, don’t try to do too much at one time, that is a guaranteed way to fail. Try and pick one achievable goal and set a time frame for which you want to accomplish it. Once you have your goal, don’t rush, but don’t procrastinate. Take it one step at a time! 4. Tell people your goals- It’s a great way to start a support system by having people to push you in the right direction when you get off track. Having a trustworthy friend or family member to confide in makes the process a lot easier!


I’ve Got A New Attitude By. Tamara Jackson


tress. What’s the point? Think about the last time you were stressed out about something. Did stressing about it help the situation at all? Did it solve the problem? More than likely, it did not. In fact, stress can make the problem worse. Stress can cause tension and anxiety in the body. It can also cause irritability and moodiness. It is best to be calm when facing trouble. Just because you have a situation doesn’t mean the situation should have you. We live in a culture of caffeine, over achievers and the deadly fear of failure. America needs to relax. Take some time to breathe and enjoy life. Success, dedication and commitment are all great qualities but how beneficial is it in the long run for us to constantly be on the run? Our mind, body and soul need a break too. Once you adapt this new attitude I guarantee you will feel light, free and much happier.

After weeks of experiencing your new found joy, don’t fret if life throws you a curve ball. Think of it as a test. Don’t let anything disrupt your serenity. Yes, it is easier said than done. However, don’t be so quick to be defeated.

Some things are out of our control. We must learn to live with that fact. We cannot control everything. Stress is not our friend. It is our enemy.

So today promise yourself that you will embrace a life of positivity. Promise yourself that you will no longer become easily overwhelmed. Promise yourself that you will take time to breathe. After all, all we have left after we remove all of the burdens and stress in our lives is life. It is a life worth enjoying.


Photos and write up by. Calvin McDaniel


Tiffany N. Patton, CEO and President of Your D powerment, lost her mother to breast cancer six against breast cancer. On Sunday November the Life”.

Ms. Patton’s personal story is one that has move of breast cancer. It is her personal mission to “H cancer diagnosis”. Her story is one that I can sym

Funds raised by bowling for life will go towards

1. Enhancing the emotional, social, and spiri tate, etc.) 2. Empowering men, women, and children a 3. Helping children thrive and build toward t 4. Strengthening and sustaining individual fa ated needs 5. Promoting preventative measures through 6. Early detection advocacy through early de 7. Holistic alternative treatments 8. Spa services to provide a relaxed pamperi 9. Prosthetic services

A portion of the proceeds will also go to Karman this dreaded disease.

With a very great turnout, Ms. Patton’s efforts w

g for Life

Dreams By Design, LLC, and Founder of the Center of New Life & Emx years ago, and as a result has become a staunch advocate in the fight 27th Ms. Patton put together a fundraising effort called “Bowling For

ed her to work towards helping others that face the life changing diagnosis Help other families discover life, hope, and empowerment� in the face of a mpathize with, because I also lost my mother to breast cancer.


itual health of families despite a cancer diagnosis (pediatric, breast, pros-

along with their families through education their future beyond the diagnosis amily and community life by receiving individual and family basic gener-

h improving daily living, exercise and dietary choices etection screenings

ing atmosphere for patients

nos Cancer Research Center, to assist in their efforts in finding a cure for

were most assuredly well received by all.


Photo by. Calvin McDaniel

And the Best Chemical for Brown Skin Is... By. Shannon Morris

Every woman deserves to feel beautiful,

and flawless skin is the foundation of beauty. That is why I strongly feel that women should not use make-up as a crutch, and start taking care of their skin underneath. Me personally, I invest a lot more in my skin care products than I do my make-up, but that doesn’t mean I don’t like to experiment in my make-up stash! I still love to create looks using my M.A.C, Revlon, NARS, and E.L.F. Not to mention, it is a god send when your skin decides to act up. But wouldn’t it be nice to walk in public without feeling self conscious about your skin? Wouldn’t you love to finally have a cost effective product that could make up for the other treatments that never worked? Chemical peels are an effective way to deeply exfoliate the skin to help peel off the layers and get rid of acne, scars, fine line, wrinkles, etc. With ethnic and darker skin tones, however, some dermatologists recommend certain types of chemical peels that may only help depending on the person’s skin type and condition. Many simply do not feel comfortable treating darker skin with the stronger chemical peels like TCA- which helps with removing acne scarring- since darker skin is more prone to keloids (raised scars). Using a chemical peel like that on dark skin could cause further damage if used improperly, a risk that a dermatologist isn’t willing to take. So, what exactly is safe and effective for darker problem skin? Mandelic acid is derived from bitter almonds, and is an excellent alternative to glycolic acid, which can cause some discomfort when applied- especially if you have sensitive skin like me. The salicylic

acid helps those with acne, hyper-pigmentation, uneven skin tone, fine lines, and acne scarring issues. When you combine both of these acids, you have a product called the Mandelic / Salicylic Acid peel (15%) that can handle the above mentioned skin problems, and is one of the few combinations of acids that is safe and effective to use on brown skin!

I decided to buy the peel from an online site called Make Up Artist Choice. I was happy to see that they offered samples of their products for a low price, plus I did some research on the ingredients, so I gave it a shot. I mean, I tried everything under the sun, and everything failed to deliver the results.

Now, I very rarely write reviews on products, but when I say this product exceeded my expectations, I was not exaggerating. This product is wonderful because it is all naturaland it actually works. No amount of words can express my satisfaction!

Just to give some back story on my condition: I have dry and sensitive skin that gets worse as the seasons change. This product drastically reduced the appearance of my spots and would stop acne in its tracks. Whether you suffer from hyper-pigmentation, scarring, acne -or all the above- it only takes about 4-5 days for you to see improvement in your skin! Of course, you have to keep doing this overtime to get the best results. I have been using this for about a month now, and my skin has done a complete turnaround.

Contiuned on page 57




something, but his car was in front of mine in traffic. As other cars were moving, he was not moving, so I had to over take him. To my consternation, the man alighted from his cab, came to where I was sitting behind the wheels and slapped me heavily. I felt so bad that I had to come down to confront him. To worsen the already tensed situation, onlookers that gathered immediately supported the man without listening to my own side of the story. They were like: “you are a star, an actress, you shouldn’t have confronted him, and don’t you know he is a man.” Meaning I should allow people walk up to me and do whatever they like and go just like that because I am an actress. That was my most embarrassing moment,” she recounts.

Meet Nigerian Actress Doris Simeon By. Jude Nebo

For those who do not know who Doris Sim-

eon is, she was born in Lagos, Nigeria; and is married to veteran movie producer and director Daniel Ademinokan, whom she met on set some years back. They have a son David.

A Yoruba and English actress, Simeon made her acting debut on Papa Ajasco comedy series. She also starred in independent films; such as: Oloju Ede, Alakada, Ten Million Naira , Modupe Temi and Eti Keta. In 2010 she starred as Da Grin’s girlfriend in Ghetto Dreamz.

The thespian has been recognized and rewarded by the Africa Movie Academy Award (AMAA) and Zulu African Film Academy Awards (ZAFAA) respectively.

In a recent interview with Entertainment Express, she revealed her most embarrassing moment as a public figure.

“This happened in broad day light in Ketu. I was driving out from the market and there was this taxi man, maybe, he was fatigued or probably sleeping, frustrated, drunk or

An End to PSG Speculation By. Seyon Tonueyi

After various speculations, David Beck has

signed a new two-year contract with a view to remain on the Los Angeles Galaxy.

There was speculation of him going to Paris Saint German and other European clubs.

He stated that, “This is an important decision for me.” Contiuned on Next Page



He went further to say, “I have seen firsthand how popular soccer is now in the State and I’ am now as committed as ever to grow the game here.”

Of course, he is one of the best players in the MLS and with his new signing, he will prove what he is known to be.

presence in the movie, it is almost difficult to keep tabs. From Genevieve Nnaji, Ramsey Nouah,Ini Edo,Monalisa Chinda, comedic actor Bishop Ime Umoh, Bryan Okwara, Uti Nwachukwu, Alexx Ekubo and upcoming stars like Bobby Obodo, Beverly Naya and Uru Eke.

Ini Edo, Desmond Elliot and Emem Isong Releases Another Block Buster Movie By. Jude Nebo

Weekend Getaway is the new movie from

With so many A-List acts registering their

the stables of the trio Emem Isong, Ini Edo and Desmond Elliot.

The movie, which is likely to be filmed in Uyo, will have its release date in sometime in 2012.

If you are interested in being an international writer, please email us at Include your name, interest and a short bio, along with a photo.


Featured • Participated in the “Go Red For Women” event with a Half-scale red dress which is showcased toured Metro Detroit for a yr., and the full Scale version for the runway. Also Showcased at the Michigan International Women’s show in Novi, MI. Displayed for a crowd of 30,000 people. • Created a Heart Couture Original Gown for MGM Grand Detroit & Casino, for the American Heart Association in 2011 for a crowd of 750 women. • Created several Doll fashion garments for Charity: “Good fellows”, created for children with low income.

Photo by. Calvin McDaniel


In my continued exploration of the fash-

• Designed garments for an Open House showcase for IADT Detroit.

• Designed & constructed a collection for: Imagine Fashion Show at the Detroit Masonic Temple in 2009

ion industry here in the metro Detroit area, I think it’s time that we look at some of the talented designers here in Detroit. When we talk about designers, one must take a close look at what the definition of a designer entails. Is it one who purchases clothing that has already been manufactured and then puts their name on it and claims it as their design? Or is it a person who conceives an idea in their mind and then from scratch build that concept into a piece of clothing that is made with pain stacking care? I would venture to say that the latter is the true meaning of a designer and I think I’ve found one that is truly striving to make an impact on the fashion scene here in Detroit.

So with that said, let me introduce you to the Designer of the Month Mariella Adamor. This up and coming designer is quickly making her name known in circles around the metro Detroit area with her unique and innovative designs.

SOME OF HER ACCOMPLISHMENTS INCLUDE: • BA/ degree in Fashion Design from The International Academy of Design and Technology, Detroit (2011)

• Designed & constructed a collection for: Imagine Fashion Show at Detroit Fox theatre in 2010 • Designed & constructed a collection for: Imagine Fashion Show at the Royal Oak Music Theater in 2011 • Her Red Dress Design is published in the summer 2011 Issue of ARTISTIC. • Designed & constructed a collection for: STRUT fashion show (For cancer awareness) 8-25-11 St. Andrews hall, Detroit, MI

I had an opportunity to not only sit down and talk with Ms. Armor, but also visit her at place where she creates hers designs, and also see her creations displayed on the runway.

Something to know about Adamor: She grew up amongst lawyers within her family, in the Latin American nation of Honduras. A graduate of Pioneer high school

d Designer: Mariella Adamor Interview By. Calvin McDaniel

This very talented and humble designer spoke openly about her inspiration and thoughts about the fashion industry as it pertains to the Detroit.

Urban Centric (UC): Can you tell me a little be about what inspired you to begin you’re designing career. Adamor (MA): Growing up me always found a “Dress Stimuli” with all the visual images around me, such in photographs, Illustrations, film, and video. My mom seasoned that love for clothing construction, and fashion fabrics at an early age….Without even knowing it. She would create garments for me and my siblings, and I always thought that it was such a privilege. It was the idea of having a treasure that no one else could have.

that live and breathe fashion like me, waiting behind the scenes ready to make their Primetime breakthrough. And is only a matter of time. I truly believe that one person can make a difference, but it takes a village to make it better. If we continue to collaborate and support one another with our talents, only then, we can input our contribution and love for fashion with the world.

Contiuned on page 24

UC: Who or what is you greatest source of inspiration when it comes to your designs? MC: My inspiration comes from the true beauty of a woman. The garments I create are innovative, edgy, with an original avantgarde style. Celebrating and catering that woman’s self-Image. My design style highlights my forward-looking entity, and my true love for Couture fashion.

UC: Can you tell me what you think sets you apart from all the other designers in the metro Detroit area and for that matter those across the country? MC: I hate competition; I’m humbled to be a part of the undiscovered talent, which the fashion industry in the Metro Detroit has to offer. Nevertheless, I set my self apart, by the high level of dedication that I have. My designs are innovative, and they have detailed elements that are stamped into each garment.

UC: In your opinion why hasn’t the Detroit fashion scene, equaled that of New York, Chicago, and LA? MC: Metro Detroit is full of talented people

Photo by. Calvin McDaniel


Contiuned from page 23

UC: What impact do you think you can make on the fashion industry, and do you believe you can help elevate Detroit to a prominent place in the fashion world? MA: To make an impact in the fashion industry, one must be true to our personal vision. And never compromise that for anything. Creative fashion is all about identity, total emotion, and self-expression. I focus on garments that display a strong presence, for that woman who is “someone” not just “anyone.”

UC: Thanks to Ms. Adamor for her candid answers and for allowing us into her world. Photo by. Calvin McDaniel

Photo by. Calvin McDaniel Photo by. Calvin McDaniel

Photo by. Calvin McDaniel

Photo by. Calvin McDaniel

Photo by. Calvin McDaniel

Photo by: Davide Anderson

Introducing Singing Sensations

VanJess By. Naomi MzNay Bonman


Coverstory Ivana is 20. I (Jessica) was born in Charleston, South Carolina and Ivana was born in Livingston, New Jersey. We grew up in Nigeria from after we were born till the ages of 8 and 9.

Interview Done by. Naomi MzNay Bonman

It’s hard to find really good talent these

days. The music industry today is compelled of either artists who can sing but are unattractive or artists who are attractive but can’t sing. There’s not too many who have both, like the artists in the 70s, 80s and 90s had.

Sophistication Urban Minds (SUM) has a pretty good eye and ear, so when I heard these two ladies sing, known as VanJess, I was like they need to be on the cover for our Winter Edition. Some of the other staff said the same thing.

VanJess represents what SUM is all about. Our primary focus is to highlight young adults who are striving and doing positive things in the community, entertainment industry, sports, fashion and business.

SUM wants to introduce to some and reintroduce to others our Winter Edition Cover Story lead, VanJess.

SUM: So for those who do not know you, what are your names and ages? And where are you guys originally from?

VanJess: My name is Jessica and I’m 18 and

SUM: How long have you guys been singing?

VanJess: Since we could speak! (lol) We’ve always sung.

SUM: What inspires you ladies to sing?

VanJess: Our love and passion for music. We couldn’t live without it, it’s just ingrained in us.

SUM: Have you ladies performed at any live shows? If so what was your favorite performance?

VanJess: We did a charity event a couple weeks back. It was a pretty mellow event, but the crowd really got hyped when we got up


which was nice.

SUM: Do you guys have any upcoming shows coming up?

VanJess: We’ve got two coming up in March. One being at Cornell University in New York.

SUM: Awesome! So are you guys currently working on any projects?

VanJess: We are currently working on our EP/Original music.

SUM: Who are some of your inspirations in the music industry?

VanJess: We really look up to Drake. He made it at first without a label just off of his own grinding, and we really admire that. We also look up to Beyonce. She’s just such a hard worker and an amazing performer.

SUM: Who would you like to work with in the studio and tour with?

VanJess: We’d love to collaborate with any young artist in the industry!

SUM: When you guys are not working hard at achieving your dream/career, what do you enjoy doing?

VanJess: We love shopping!! And we love just hanging out with friends, nothing too crazy.

SUM: What do you want to accomplish right now to the next five years?

VanJess: We hope to put out albums, go on tour and just make music full time.

SUM: What advice do you have for other young people out there who want to pursue a career in music?

VanJess: To be persistent, don’t take no for an answer. Also, work hard on your craft, it’s all about the finished product!

SUM: Are there any mottos or quotes that you live by?

VanJess: There’s one that goes, “When your resting or sleeping, someone is out there fighting and sweating, and working hard and if you meet them they’ll take your spot,” so we always just work hard and never get lazy.

SUM: How can people book you for performances?

VanJess: They can contact Victor Murgatryod:

SUM: How can the fans connect with you?

VanJess: Hit us up on Facebook, twitter, tumblr whatever we always respond J

SUM: Thank you so much ladies for taking a few minutes out of your busy schedule. SUM wishes you much success and we are supporting you a 110%


Negativity in Cartoons By. Curl J. Louis

What is the extent of negativity in cartoon

shows that are shown on television these days? Do some people take the jokes too far or do writers push the issue of race, religion, sex, politics or stereotypes too far?

Many of us watch animated cartoon shows, whether it’s the Simpsons, Family Guy, South Park or even the Boondocks, and we all know that sometimes the writers can push the button of the issue one, two many times.

Could the issues or topics be truly considered negative since these are just cartoons, or is it just some people are being too sensitive or not open minded enough when the issue at hand they believe in relates to them and is being joked about on these animated shows?

floating around with one skeleton holding a video camera, and another skeleton holding a sign that read: “Girls Gone Wild.” Now some would have looked at this as taking something that affected thousands of people not funny, but several avid fans of the show found it humorous.

Family Guy once started off one of its shows where they were walking in a museum and they came to a sign that read, “Lost City of New Orleans.” Chris asked Peter was there ever a city called New Orleans, Peter replied, “Nobody really knows.” Now in the scene it shows a street in New Orleans called Burbon Street flooded underwater with skeletons

We should all take the jokes on these animated shows for what they are “Jokes,” because they help lighten up everyday reality. What is the difference between the jokes that friends share amongst each other to the ones that are being shared on these shows? There is not a difference; some people just have a sensitivity problem with stereotypes being said in a cartoonish way and being laughed at by other people.

We can find it funny when a standup comedian jokes about it on its standup comedy show special, so what’s the difference of those jokes being mentioned on cartoons?

We have to realize that everything in life should not be taken serious, especially what is shown on cartoon shows because they are intended for us to laugh at them whether they touch on race, stereotypes and religion, to

natural disasters, just laugh at them for the thirty minutes that they are on. If you can’t do that then simply grab the remote that came with your HDTV, change the channel and watch one of those reality TV shows like the Bad Girls Club or House Wives of Atlanta; I’m sure there is no negativity shown on those shows…LOL!


Artist Spolight: Royalteaz

Interview by. Curl J. Louis

ing themselves boss bitches and that’s them, but I’m doing me by representing the females who grind hard and do what they must do to get it the smart, hard and the right way.

I took some time away from doing upcom-

ing artists not for the fact that I was unable to reach out to them, but for the simple fact that I wanted to take the time to get to know the upcoming artist that I was not just interviewing but as well giving their fans and future fans some insight into who they are as an artist, and what motivates them to continue doing what they love and inspires them. So I found myself hitting I-10 taking it to I-49 up to Dallas, TX where I was able to be blessed and have the pleasure of sitting down with my first female artist Royalteaz, and I have to say she is truly an upcoming diva in the game with some positive insight on not just music but life as well. Urban Centric: Introduce yourself to your fans and to the people who haven’t experienced your musical talents. Royalteaz: What’s poppin! I’m Royalteaz. Grinding in and out of Dallas, TX royal teazin em’ with my sound. I adore hip hop and r&b drives me, my music is dirty south inspired. However, I can write all kinds of songs from pop to gospel. I am a recording artist/songwriter who explores new possibilities with sounds so I may sing or rap some flows depending on how I feel. I do no call myself a rapper because I have more of a singing background.

UC: Have to say that was the best introduction I’ve gotten so far, and just to think it was only the intro

Royalteaz: Already

UC: Being an inspiring and upcoming artist what are some of the things you feel you can bring to the industry that you feel it’s missing, and not getting enough of?

UC: Growing up in Texas who were some of the rappers, singers, or just musicians that influenced you?

Royalteaz: Lil KeKe, SUC (Screwed Up Click), Cash Money, Eve, Nelly, Mary J. Blige, Faith Evans, Missy

UC: That’s a list of talented singers and rappers

Royalteaz: yes and there are many more

UC: At what age did you figure that this was something that you wanted to pursue?

Royalteaz: My parents tell me I was singing since I was 3 years old. I sung for my aunts in Virginia “Love Come Down” standing on top of a table. I stayed interested in music Contiuned on page 46

Royalteaz: I have a different tone and style of arrangement. I bring a new sound that can be related to or compared, but separated from other female artists. I think the game can always use a new female vibe. I’m not trying to sound like anyone out there I got my own “boss lady” swag. I hear female artists call-



from grade school on up performing in talent shows in high school, and along with singing in the choir. I took those teachings and experiences and knew I was comfortable on stage. In college my roommate, myself and some other females started a group and performed on campus at TSU. One rapped, I sung and the other was hype women. On occasions I hung out with some great musical influences as a young age chillin’ with stars that weren’t stars to the public yet. It’s a trip because I don’t remember how I ended up at these Houston hang outs. It was like I was asked spontaneously like “say come with me here or there.” Man I was blessed to be around these talented guys who flowed they ass off I mean I would just sit back and as they were spittin’ in their own way unlike any other I was intrigued and had to try. So I jumped in that freestyle session and it became an inspiration to get into the game ever since.

UC: Can you remember the first rap cd you bought, or remember the lyrics to the first song you could rap word for word?

to get better and do better.

UC: On the track it has a unique sound that some may not have heard before. Who were the producers on that track? Royalteaz: Oh yea I have a desire for unique sounds and I was blessed to run into of Houston’s finest producers LoKey of Da BeatBakerz he has crazy tracks. I started writing “Step The Game Up” in November 2010 and sat it down for a minute and this was after the New Year entered I got back to working on it. After I laid it down I was then blessed to meet a talented producer/songwriter Peedy Pype, and he mixed it like cake mix. He really understood where I was going with the sound. In the song the lyrics include “Dripping paint from Dallas to Houston,” because that’s the first city I spent some bosslady bread on musically.

UC: Do you plan on working with them on other tracks for your cd, and who are some other producers you are working with or looking to work with?. And are there any artists you will be collaborating with?

Royalteaz: Yes, I do plan on working with some artists this year from Atlanta to Tennessee. I plan on collaborating with other Texas artist as well like Surreal of Swisha House. She has a dope flow that is different and I like different. I would love to have Gangsta (Lady) Boo on a feature, and Lil Chat those chicks go concrete A-1. On the male artist side boy oh boy everyone will just have to wait and see. There are a lot of gifted male artists in the DFW area and I will be working with them real soon. It’s going down! Yes, I am definitely working with Da BeatBakerz, Peedy Pype again and I still am. I have songs in the lab produced by Deezy Tha Producer on deck now, and I am always shopping other producers. The ball is rolling like Southside is still holding and Royalteaz is molding something so put your goggles on.

UC: What genre or style do you consider your music to be because listening to your music you can hear some R&B with some rap?

Royalteaz: The first rap songs I rememorized was Will Smith’s “Summertime” and LL Cool J “Around the Way Girl”

UC: so where you a around the way girl in the summertime (laughs) Royalteaz: (laugh) let’s just say I had fun being a girl in the summertime’s

UC: You have a song out called “Step The Game Up.” What was the thought you put into that song that made you realize it was something you had to get in the studio and record? Royalteaz: Well when I first started going into the studio I had no purchased tracks of my own so I just went in to sing or freestyle over some beats, or lay down something that I wrote to. Freestyling is fun for me but I needed to step it up as I felt in order to be taken seriously as an artist. In life generally I believe we should always continue to step our game up in whatever our endeavors are. So I wrote the song to help inspire myself and hopefully others as well to keep pushing

Royalteaz: Hip Hop/ Rap/ Pop/ Dirty South. I have written R&B songs but I don’t know if I will be the one singing it or not yet

hands dipped into. What are some of the other things you have your hands on leaving your fingerprints on?

UC: What obstacles if any do feel stands in your way of you achieving what you desire in the music industry?

Royalteaz: Most know my CPOC (Custom Paintings On Canvas) artwork dealings. I dip in graphic art design, promotions, marketing and AVP at a fortune 500 company. I’m not going to do like that other self entitled boss we’ve grown to love and act like I never grinded at a 8-5. Yes, hustling like Ace, Ross and Wayne say. I’m a bosslady in many ways and of course that includes music.

Royalteaz: The only obstacles in this industry I am learning is that there is a lot of things that people who are not in the industry do not know, but I represent myself. I run with no crew, no click, no labels I have affiliations through business only, and I like to keep it like that. I don’t like to be told how to dress, how to wear my hair, what to say not to say, or how to say it. I tried that management thing guess I must have not met the right manager. New artist can really be bamboozled when they first come into the game, but I have been doing my studies for years before getting my feet wet so I can swim with the sharks.

UC: Music isn’t the only thing you have your

UC: What can your fans and future fans expect from Royalteaz through her transition in the entertainment world? Royalteaz: My fans and future fans I give mucho respect because I was at first nervous that I wouldn’t be understood or could vibe to, but I have lots of support and I give mucho love right back. Upcoming things from Royalteaz music include faster flows, some clubbing joints and some collabos. I’m going to be hitting the stage up soon so I hope to see you all where I am to rock with me. I will defiantly keep everyone posted on upcoming happenings.

UC: Looking back to the Mc Lyte, Queen Latifah, to Missy Elliot how do see that they have paved the way for Da Brat, Trina, Nicki Minaj and yourself included? Royalteaz: Oh yes, the times have changed from where female rappers are respected, admired, and taken seriously because of Mc Lyte, Queen Latifah and Missy Elliot (legends) who made it possible for the future female rappers to shine. Those ladies brought that swag like no one had seen at those times. I have lots of respect for all ladies in the game Da Brat, Nicki Minaj, Shawanna, and Trina are beast-ettes.

UC: Which do you feel takes the most out of you, or as you may feel keeps you motivated and determined to keep at it? Royalteaz: I have been putting off being serious about it for so long because I didn’t have myself together. There were times that I was grinding the wrong way trying to do backup for artists, and stuff that was just a waste of time. I got myself straight found my own swag, and prayed about it. I stay motivated now because I don’t want to look back 20 years later and say, what if? On top of that my family pushes and inspires me.

UC: The rap game hasn’t always been a place many females felt they could fit in with the male rappers. How do you feel those times have changed? Royalteaz: Lady MC’s are like the baking soda in the fridge keeps it fresh. Ladies can grind and shine on all kinds of levels now if they have the right persona. Its still not a walk in the park for female rappers at all and I will just leave it at that.

UC: Before I let you go and get back to the grind what is something you want to tell the ones who have supported you through your journey?

Contiuned on next page



Royalteaz: A special thanks to DJ eMoney. And I want to thank my family and friends for believing in me.

UC: For the people that want to follow Royalteaz where can they go to follow you and hear your music? Royalteaz: Royalteaz music can be heard on and www. i interact with my facebook family at royalteay and tweet me at royalteazy. i appreciate everyone’s support. Mucho Luv, Pray up/Stay up

UC: I want to say it was a pleasure to be able to interview you and on behalf of Urban Centric Magazine I want to say thank you Royalteaz, and hopefully be doing future interviews with you down the line. Royalteaz: Thanks to you Curl and Urban Centric Magazine for reaching out to a new artists. It has been a pleasure to interview with such a wonderful online magazine.

Meet R&B Senstations EQ Live

By. Naomi MzNay Bonman

In the past you have witnessed the young,

the fly and the flashy, does B2k ring a bell? Now you there’s another hot, new guy band that is rising to the top for the year of 2012.

EQ Live is one of the newest, hottest upcoming boy bands. They have a Pop/Hip Hop R&B flavor; think Mindless Behavior mixed with the former R&B boy band Pretty Ricky, except Eq Live’s lyrics are a lot cleaner than Pretty Ricky’s; they have that ol’ skool feel with a new school beat. The trio is originally from Chicago, Illinois but now reside in Hollywood, California, and were formed over 10-years ago.

EQ Live consists of Shorty Q, 22; singer/ songwriter; Bad Boy Baby C, 23; rapper/lyricist/songwriter; and Prince Avian, 21; singer/ songwriter. The name EQ Live comes from the phrase Extra Quality Live, so ladies these brothers can actually sing and they don’t use auto tune.

Since the formation of the group, EQ Live has been blessed with the opportunity of opening up for big name performers, such as Kanye West, R. Kelly, Sammie, The Dream, Soulja Boy and several others. They also headlined The Taste of Chicago two years in a row,

EQ Live is inspired by a variety of artists, ranging from your ol’ skool artists such as: Jackie Wilson, James Brown and Frankie Beverley & Maze; in the new school era they are inspired by Ginuwine, Jagged Edge, Chris Brown, Tupac, Lil Boosie and several others.

“We’re inspired by anyone who has made music and opened the doors for us,” Shorty Q said. “Make sure you know your history and those who have came before you,” Bad Boy Baby C adds.

These young, humble brothers have several things that keep them motivated. Being in the music industry, having something that

motivates you and keeps you going is crucial. “Our fans, writing good music and receiving good feedback, all the hard work and what my family has seen in me keeps me motivated,” Shorty Q said.

“My Granny keeps me motivated. I want to buy her a house in Mississippi,” Bad Boy Baby C said.

Prince Avian also added that the youth keeps him motivated; youth need more positive role models, so by EQ-Live putting out positive music and giving good advice will keep our youth motivated.

Aside from there family, the group agreed that people who love music and Christ keep them motivated. In the future the guys would love to collaborate with Flo Rida, Black Eyed Peas Chris Brown, Katie Perry, Lil Boosie and anyone who brings that same type of energy that they bring to the table.

Contiuned on next page



You can catch EQ-Live performing with Amber Rose in December and keep an eye out for them in 2012. Their album will also be released sometime soon, the date hasn’t been set as of yet.

For those that want to keep in contact with the guys and to look them up, follow them on all the social networks:, and, and if you or your kids just so happen to love their music, request their song “Purple Love” on your local radio station.


Cuffing Season: Can It Be More Than Just a Season? By. Queen & Cam’ryn

As the season changes from summer to fall

and the temperatures begin to drop, we find ourselves asking, who is going to keep me warm? For those that are single, you start to explore your starting lineup. Who will make for an acceptable seasonal cuff buddy? We begin reevaluating our summer “friends.” Who cooks the best? Who likes to be home versus in the street? Who is most likely to give great gifts? Whomever we decide fits the basic cuff criteria is fair game to be a seasonal boo. During the winter many people go into hibernation mode, like little squirrels we gather our nuts into our shelter to prepare for long, cold, winter nights. Cuffing season is a term that is used in the urban community to define “hooking up” with someone during the winter season. Most people like to have a warm body to snuggle up to and perhaps have a few home-cooked meals with someone instead of being out there in the cold playing the “hunt and prey” games. If you are single and looking, you have become a target for men and/or women looking for something seasonal. This can have its ups and downs. When dealing with anyone, the relationship terms should always be clear. There is nothing wrong with stating to a person up front what your intentions may be. Adults have that responsibility to be open and honest; however, that does not mean that this always happens.

How do you know when you have fallen victim to this type of set up? You will not know unless the person is quite blunt. If you do find yourself in this type of relationship does that mean it is a bad thing? It can be if you allow it. It is the holiday season, and having someone to share it with is a benefit to most people. Not everything has to be defined right away.

Some people fall in love from what was supposed to be a one-night stand, but the reality is that many do not. There is not a single relationship that is guaranteed to be long term, so cuffing will be no exception. This type of promiscuity can lead to health risks, and possibly emotional damage on either your part or the other party involved. As with anything else, you have to be cautious of the relationships you allow yourself to enter into.

Cuffing, like anything else, is something that you must decide is right or wrong for yourself. Just remember that those seasonal people sometimes stick around for longer than you want, and then you cannot get rid of them. Proceed with caution!

If you are interested in being a relationship writer, please email us at Include your name, short bio, photo and any samples that you may have.

Are You Ready to Take Your Relationship to the Next Level? By. Naomi MzNay Bonman

Relationships, GOOD relationships, are

hard to come across these days. People constantly jump in and out of relationships, and then complain when they can’t seem to find the “perfect” mate. However, many people have had a good mate, but didn’t know how to treat them and then they end up with yet another failed relationship. So how when you do have that perfect mate, how do you know when to start taking things to the next level without rushing into things? Follow these simple 10 steps and you should have a successful, intimate relationship. 1. Trust. When you guys trust each other, you know trust the other person with all of your secrets and you know that he/she won’t go running around town telling all of the business.

each other or you’re not totally comfortable sharing everything with each other, you need to reevaluate the relationship.

2. Respecting Each Other’s Boundaries. You guys know each other’s limits, and YOU DON’T cross them. You don’t push your mate to do what he/she doesn’t want to do. 3. You Love Each Other I think this is pretty simple. When You love your mate, you would do anything for your mate. You care for each other and have each other’s best interest at heart. 4. You Guys Have Good Clean Fun. If you guys keep each other smiling ALL the time, this is a good sign, but if you only have fun when things lead to sex, then that is a red flag. When you guys can just simply have fun talking and walking on the beach or through the park, you have a keeper. 5. You Guys are Comfortable around Each Other. In order for a relationship to even start, you must feel comfortable around each other. If the two of you are always nervous around

6. You Guys Know Each Other. When you take the time to really get to know each other and develop a strong and stable friendship, then you’re ready to go deeper into the relationship. 7. You Talk More Than You Touch. Communication is EVERYTHING. I can’t stress this enough. COMMUNICATE. COMMUNICATE, COMMUNICATE. If you two aren’t communicating, then the relationship will NOT last long. 8. You’ve Met Each Other’s People. You know how deeply he/she cares for you when he/she brings you around his loved ones. If he/she doesn’t want a committed relationship with you, and he/she just wants a hook-up, most likely he/she isn’t going to bring you around his/her people. 9. You’ve Seen The Best and Worst of Each Other. The joy of really loving someone is seeing all of their flaws and still being attracted to them and loving them. 10. You Make Each Other Happy. As long as you are truly happy and being treated with respect, then that is all that matters. If you’re not truly happy, then you should think about opting out of the relationship.


Photo by Calvin McDaniel

Love Under Good Management


By. Curl J. Louis

what they could do for us, and possibly bring to the table; we must first recognize those same things that we want from them in us. You cannot begin to look for something good in somebody if we have yet to realize the good in us and the things we are able to bring to a relationship.

In today’s society we tend to hear many peo-

ple repeating that same prayer, “God please send me a good mate. I need somebody,” and if people haven’t realized, God has a keen sense of humor. He will send you a good man or woman your way, but he or she may not be that good one had in mind.

People tend to blame their past failures in their previous relationships on the other person on why it didn’t go the way they hoped for it to go. In a relationship things work two ways. The reasons why the relationship failed could have been due to several factors, but mainly due to things that somebody wasn’t doing or their lack of doing.

A relationship is a give and take, and both parties have to be willing to play both parts, or as they say be willing to compromise to each other’s needs and wants. Also, communication is the biggest key it can make or break the best relationships with the lack of it.

When we begin to realize that we are not perfect and the person we are looking for will not be perfect, it is then that we will begin to recognize the person for us.

Some people are not willing to do the work for what it is they want and/or are praying for. As the Bible says, “Faith without work is dead.” You cannot begin to ask and pray for something, but are not willing to do the work to achieve what it is you want. The same amount of time and energy it takes you to pray for God to send somebody your way, you can take that same amount of time and

Before you begin to pray the “Lonely Prayer” asking the Man above to send somebody your way, there are a few things you must ask yourself.

1. What are you willing to do to find that good person your heart desires and seeks out. 2. What are you looking for in the person you want to be with, because as we know nobody is walking around with signs on them with the good qualities he/she possess on the front of them, and on the back of them in small print the side effects that he/ she may cause, but that is neither here nor there. 3. What good is there in you that you can bring to the other person, because the same prayer you have prayed for they have prayed for as well. 4. And most importantly people sometimes forget that what it took to get you in the relationship is the same thing that is needed to help you maintain and keep the relationship. In order to begin to recognize a good mate and

energy and look for the person and get to know them, and see how things can lead and workout. We tend to have certain criteria’s that we look for in people, and if they don’t meet all of them or fall short on some, we tend to dismiss them like a school bell for recess. The vast majority of people have a list so high that if they took their time to compare themselves to the list that they have, I’m sure they wouldn’t stand up to it, or even date their selves. Nobody wants to settle with just anybody, but you have to realize that list of things you want in your perfect person only exist in an animated Disney movie.

When we have done everything it is to get the person that it is that we have been longing to get and be with, somehow we forget that those somethings that got them to be with us are those same exact things that’s needed to keep them. Men if you use to surprise her with flowers at work along with a message saying you were thinking about her don’t stop continue to do so, and women if you use to write him a little note and put it in his suitcase saying have a good day at work and you’ll be missing him don’t stop that either it’s those little things that keep a relationship strong. Some may feel that they do not need to keep doing those things because they already have the person, but it’s that same train of thought that will cause you to lose them. People ask how is it that you keep the fire going in a relationship once it’s gone out, and the answer is simply you don’t let it go out you always keep the flame going. Never let the passion that once fueled the relationship leave out of it for once the fire is out its hard to get it relight.

A couple that prays together stays together

Contiuned from page 17 (The Best Chemical for Brown Skin Is...)

The actual application of the acid varies, but for me, I felt a slight burning (but tolerable) sensation. After about 5 to 8 minutes, the area where I applied the acid began to “frost”, or turn white. This is normal, and it lets you know that it’s working. In about 3 days, the dead skin peeled off! If you have less sensitive skin, you may experience a “warming” sensation, or slight tingling. Some people will see actual peeling of the skin, while others will just notice the excellent exfoliation benefits and a brighter, more glowing skin tone.

Post peel care is vital to maintain the results from your treatment. Don’t even think about doing any type of chemical peel without using a sunscreen of at least SPF 30+, even in the winter. Not doing so could irritate the fresh and delicate skin from the peel, and all of your hard work (and money) would go down the drain! Use Neosporin, shea butter moisturizer, and drink lots of water to stay hydrated.

Doing this speeds up the healing process and makes the dead skin slough off with no problems.

You can go to to check out their selection of products (link is at the bottom). You may order a sample of the peel from their website for about $9, plus free shipping. I have finally found something that works for me, and wanted to share the wealth. I am happy that I didn’t have to spend a huge amount of money at the dermatologist’s office to do a procedure that I did on my own vanity table.

Oh, and MUAC, you have earned a customer for life!

Link: catalog/At_Home_Chemical_Peels-10-1.html



To Live Together or To Not

By. Queen and Cam’ryn

Most likely, the two of you have been dat-

ing for some time now and you are pondering the question…should we move in together? To be honest, the two of us made our relationship official on New Years’ Eve and were living together before Martin Luther King Day. We had been friends before we started dating. Actually, we are co-workers. We were starting to spend a lot of time together. Before either of us knew it, we were sharing bills and making life-altering decisions with each other. Lesbians call it u-hauling. Everyone else calls it shacking up or just living together. The actual term is co-habituating. Traditionally, people did not move in with one another until they were married. Those times are well behind us now. First, you have to know what type of relationship you each want. It should be well established in the beginning of every relationship, as to whether or not you want or are looking for something long-term, or just looking to have some fun. Many men (and some women too) would argue that women can never have something casual; however, that is not always the case. Both men and women can have something casual. As humans, we do sometimes tend to let our emotions get the best of us and we look for more than we should. As you start to spend

time with a person, it is natural to wonder where it is going. Especially if you plan to one day be married and have children. Do not be afraid to discuss these things in the beginning stages. There should always be clear, set boundaries and guidelines. If the lines start to become blurred, then step back and talk about it. If you two have decided that marriage is not right for you, then moving in may not be the best decision. That is not to say that living together means marriage is in the future either, but that goes back to knowing what type of relationship you want to have. You have to ask yourself, what are the reasons for moving in together, and what are you looking to gain or lose. Many people find it easier to share financial burdens, and that alone can be motivating in times like this. You have to be careful though. One of you can be thinking “great roommate,” while the other is thinking “wedding bells.” When you consider finances, also think about your personality types. If he/she is the type to throw caution to the wind and spend to the last, or do they make responsible and wise choices. What woman would pass up a sale, the best sale ever to pay a bill, right? You also have to consider the mystery in the relationship. Once you move in with a person, you lose that mystery. You now know each other very well. You have lost your independence. Everything is now “we” instead of “I.” Answer these questions for yourself, and if

you are comfortable enough with your partner, ask them too:Am I moving in with you, or are you moving in with me? If you are the one moving, what happens with your things? Do you have the same taste in dcor? What if you like to squeeze your toothpaste tube from the bottom and they like to squeeze it from the middle? Will moving in together mean marriage? If it does not, are you willing to accept just living together, and for how long? Set terms for yourself. Am I willing to give up my autonomy? If it means no more guys/ girls nights out, can you handle that?Am I willing to compromise my personal space? When sharing a space with someone, you have to give up some of your own space.Is

our relationship at the right phase to take on a change of this magnitude? If you are already having problems or doubts about your future, moving in is not a good idea. Ultimately, the decision rests with each of you, but you should know that moving in with someone is not something to take lightly. It is a life-altering decision. It can make your relationship stronger, or it can break it. Talk. Talk. Talk with each other first. Do not make a decision like this based on the wrong reasons. Moving in does not mean that one day he/she will marry you. It does not mean that your trust issues will disappear, and life is not always a fairytale.


How Much Would You Scarfice By. Tamara Jackson


ights, camera, action.  Today there are so many Hollywood hopefuls.  Singers, dancers, actors and film makers all share a common goal.  They all want to make it.  For many of them, becoming successful in their artistic careers has been a life, long dream.  The life of an artist is a difficult one.  It is a daily routine of judgment and rejection.  They have to develop strong, thick skin.  The weak give up or give in.  They sacrifice so much emotionally and financially but how much more would they sacrifice to seal the deal and make it big?

Two artists shared with me their passion for what they do and what they are willing to sacrifice to fulfill their dreams.

Abosede’ Copeland is a film writer and maker. Currently she is working towards her Masters degree in film at Savannah College of Art and Design. 

Dani J is a very talented singer from Buffalo, NY.

Tamara: What is your definition of “making it?”

Abosede’: My definition of “making it” is when you as an artist have reached the point when the art you create can touch any audience.

Dani J: My definition of making it, in my opinion is having my talent and my songwriting recognized and respected on a national level, and eventually on an international level. Making it is the realization that all of your hard work and determination has finally paid off.

Tamara: What are you willing to sacrifice to make it?

Abosede’: I’m willing to sacrifice my comfort zone to delve into the unknown.

Dani J: I will sacrifice my time and put my talent on the line in order to make, because I believe so much in it. In order to make it you

have to have patience and strong faith that it will happen for you.

Tamara: How important is it for an artist to know themselves before they make it?

Abosede’: I think it’s very important to know yourself as an artist. Seriously, how can you grow into something if you don’t know from where you start?

Dani J: It’s extremely important to know who you are as an artist before you make it. This is because you need to know your limits and how far you will go and how much of yourself you are willing to give up for your craft.  You don’t want others making that decision for you.  You must know yourself and have your mind already made up and stand firm on that.  If you don’t know who you are, them someone can come along and turn you and your art into whatever they want it to be, something that doesn’t have your heart in it.

Tamara: Do you think many artists “sell out?” Are you willing to sell out?

Abosede’: I believe there are some artists who sell out for various reasons. The main one being inability to be able or willing to think outside the box. However, I’m not willing to because I stand firm in what I write about and I am able to adequately “defend” it if necessary.

Dani J: Yes and no. Yes because I see many artists become something different than they were when they first started out.  But I say no because it could be that they didn’t really know themselves coming in and succumbed to the pressures of the industry and the glamour of the Hollywood lights.  In most cases, these artists have families and friends depending on them, so they have to do what it takes, even if that means “selling out”.  I am not willing to sell out.  I have a family and a community that I live for and that look up to me.  Any project that I do I make sure that it’s not only appropriate but that it reflects me.  I’m not into making music just to dance to in the club.  All of the songs I write have a meaning and come from personal experience and the experiences of those close to me.  If I make it I want to do it knowing that I stayed true to myself and that the people most important to me can be proud of me.  Selling out is not an option.

Dani J Music:

www.danijmusic.comwww.reverbnation. com/danij


MOMEMENT OF Remembering thos The entertainme will neve the sam

Whitney Houston 1963-2012 Don Cornelious 1936-2012

Elizabeth Taylor 1932-2011

Etta James 1938-2012

Patrice O’’Neal 1969-2011

Dwight Arrington ““Heavy D” Myers 1967-2011

F SLIENCE.... se who we lost. ent industry er be me. Nathaniel Dwayne “Nate Dogg” Hale 1969-2011

Mante “M-Bone” Talbert 1988-2011

Steve Jobs 1955-2011

Vesta Williams 1957-2011

Joe Frazier 1944-2011

Amy Winehouse 1983-2011


The Power of Networking By. Shannon Morris

The ability to walk into a room and influ-

ence, conversate and connect with people is a skill that many people have yet to learn, and yet is so valuable and priceless. Ever wonder how networking seems to be second nature to some people, and others are just, well, forgotten?

People need to place your voice and personality with your face, so don’t show up to a gathering thinking your looks are enough to make people want to connect with you. If you don’t mingle, you will quickly fade into the background, no matter how awesome you think you are. How are people suppose to know if you don’t introduce yourself and engage with various people at the event?

It takes practice and patience to be able to put yourself out there and let your presence be known to others. We all have different reasons for networking, but we share one similar goal- we want to influence people and be influenced in order to expand out contacts. So, what makes a great networker?

The most rewarding thing that can come out of a networking opportunity is the ability to win the trust of the people you connected with. People like to be positively influenced and interested. Once you gain the ability to capture your networks and keep them interested in your story, the possibilities of success are endless. Keep the conversations going and -of course- listen to what others are saying.

Don’t be afraid to initiate a conversation! It may take practice especially if you are timid, but the more you do it, the easier it gets. When someone feels that you are truly interested in their story, they will open up to you and eventually, that house of trust is being built one brick at a time.

You can prove yourself to your new connects that you have something to offer the world. You are presented with the perfect opportunity to share your goals with people who have a similar life plan.

Skilled networkers are intuitive, as they can read a person’s body language and conclude if that person is open to conversation and showing interest in being at the gathering. On a deeper level, they can sense when someone is only there to use them for their reputation and their connections. This is why it is important to be sincere, honest, intuitive, and persistent when networking with others. Once you found your niches and established clear goals, practice and memorize your “oral resume” (a brief introduction of yourself) and get out there and get noticed. But, that’s not enough.

Why?  While being seen is good, being remembered is the best result you can get out of networking.

You guys can help each other out and from there, strong friendships, connections, and business partners can blossom. So get out there, mix and mingle, and most of all- have fun!




2 3

5 1. Powerstreaming- Watching several episodes of a TV show in a row, usually from an online streaming service. This can be done over several evenings, or a marathon weekend. 2. Credit card roulette- A game of chance to decide which person pays for a restaurant meal. Every party contributes a credit/debit card into a hat and the waiter/waitress removes one card at time. The last card removed pays the entire bill. 3.Fashionmista- The male version of the fashionista.. A man who loves fashion. 4. iFinger- It’s the finger(s) you purposely keep clean when you eat something messy so you could operate your touchscreen smartphone/tablet/GPS without making the screen look like your plate. 5. Eye broccoli- opposite of eye candy, someone unappealing to look at 6. Mompetition- The one-up rivalry that moms play making their child seem better, smarter, and/ or more advanced than yours. May involve two or more moms and any number of children, even full-grown. 7. Shexting- Sending picture(s) of your feces to your buddie(s) via picture message on your cell phone. 8. Sleep drunk- When you’re woken up from a nap and your mental state of confusion resembles that of a drunken state.

Our Team: Founder, Editor in Chief Naomi MzNay Bonman

Follow us on all the social media sites: Facebook: Urban Centric Mag Twitter: @UrbanCentricMag Youtube: Urban Centric Mag Tumblr: Urban Centric Magazine And don’t forget to visit our website every two weeks for new news and stories!

Columnists: Nakiesha “Moca” McDaniel Roger “Danger Man” Tinsely Staff/Freelance Writers: Curl Louis Tamara Jackson Shannon Morris Jude Nebo Seyon Festus Calvin McDaniel Contributing Writers: Queen & Cam’ryn Ashley Jackson

Support Us and Empower Their Future!!!

Urban Centric Winter 2011-12  

Cover Story: VanJess The Power of Networking New Year, New Me

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