Sunday, February 16, 2014

PAFF.ORG & International Society of Black Latinos (, Featuring the Film Black and Cuba

PAFF.ORG, World Premiere of the film, "Black And Cuba"
"Quien es tu Abuela?" - "Who is your Grandmother?" That's the question that was answered this Sunday morning when MiddaySunday, Tony Valdez, had
Juanita Palacios-Sims, Founder, President of ISBL and Psychotherapist Melissa Shepherd,  ISBL.

The International Society of Black Latinos(ISBL) - Juanita Palacios- Sims, President, Founder, ISBL - collaborated with PAFF.ORG - Ayuko Babu, Executive Director, Founder,
Ayuko, Babu, Founder, Executive Director of PAFF.ORG, with
Robin J. Hayes, Director, Cinematographer of  "Black and Cuba",
Juanita Palacios-Sims, Founder, President of ISBL.  
Pan African Art & Film Festival, for a wonderful Meet & Greet and Film Premiere of the movie,
 Black and Cuba.

While watching the movie, Black and Cuba, at the Pan African Film Festival, I developed admiration for the students at Yale University.
To be isolated on a predominately Caucasian Campus, the students banded together for a common cause, which was intriguing... as they searched to find the revolution. I knew the Country of Cuba had race issues, but I did not understand the depth until one of the locals told his story of being stopped by police officers while walking down the street. His only crime was being black.
The commonality of two countries - worlds apart - brings up the question of freedom. In a Democratic and Communist society, both Cubans and African Americans are still in the middle of a struggle.
The film left me wanting to visit Cuba even more.
 (Black and Cuba, Runtime 82 minutes, Country, US, Directed by: Robin J. Hayes Cinematographer/ Editing by/Screenplay by Michelle Chang & Robin J. Hayes)
Thank you, Herb J. Wesson Jr., President, Los Angeles City Council,
Albert E. Lord III, Deputy, South East, LA City Council, and staff for such remarkable job!

Dawn Sutherland, Writer-At-Large, Angela Hoffman, Editor, Writer-At-Large 

Friday, February 14, 2014

It's A Lover's Holiday! Happy Valentines Day!

Ohhhhhhh, Love. So sweet. Like fine Chocolate ~
Speaking of which, last Saturday, I had the pleasure of being in the company of
Dr. Bernard and Shirley Kinsey, on their 45th anniversary. I must tell you, it was truly a delight to to spend time around a couple that truly likes each other, respects each other and loves one another.

I've asked around and talked to 50 couples who were married a minimum of 25 years, and the secret to a very happy relationship seems to be this; you have to work at it, Honey Child!
Each person in each relationship is unique, but there are a few very necessary ingredients that are required in building a strong foundation; Mutual respect, trust, adoration and the need to compromise.

Dr. Bernard and Shirley Kinsey just celebrated their 45th anniversary, and I had the pleasure of being there
Dr. Bernard & Shirley Kinsey w/paintings by Artis Lane
Dr. Bernard Kinsey speaks so well of his other half,  "She is my sun light, the love of my life."
Shirley Kinsey is a very accomplished,
well spoken, brilliant woman with a zest for life! When you look into her eyes, you see light.
The joy of her life is her family,namely, their son, Vice- President of The Kinsey Collection,
Khalil Kinsey also known in the Hip Hop Industry as Business Mogul, Diz Gibran.

Learning to love someone truly is about finding out what it is that you can bring to the table, and then finding someone to build with.

Dr. Kinsey says, "Find someone to love.
Find something to do, and do it often."

Happy Anniversary and thank you Dr. Bernard and Shirley Kinsey, for showing the globe what love looks like.

Smooches, Carla
(Happy Birthday,  with love, Shirley Kinsey - Stevie Wonder style), 

 (Re-Post from 2.13.12. Happy 47th Anniversary Dr. Bernard & Shirley Kinsey! We can never forget the love you show the Community! Originally posted @ )

Thursday, February 13, 2014

PAFF.ORG Art & Film Festival: RasTa: A Soul's Journey World Premiere 2014

RasTa: A Soul's Journey World Premiere
(2012/Canada/Documentary/95 min)
Dir: Stuart Samuels
Donisha Prendergast,  First grand-daughter of Bob & Rita Marley
Photography by ProfoundlyKim on Tumblr
If you were ever curious about the roots of and origins of the Rastafarians, RasTa: A Soul's Journey should be at the top of your list. This documentary takes us on a journey with Bob and Rita Marley's first granddaughter, Donisha Prendergast. Donisha's quest to learn the truth about the origins of the Rasta religion and culture spans 8 countries: Jamaica, Ethiopia, South Africa, Britain, Canada, India, Israel and the United States. Each country brings her into close contact with people from all walks of life that live Rasta in the forms of religion, culture, diet, philosophy, artistic expression, relationships and political ideology.

What I loved about the film was experiencing this young Rasta woman connect with people of all races, ages, nationalities and socio-economic backgrounds. From the freedom fighters of the South Africa and the political scholars in Ethiopia to the Israeli Jews in the temples of Israel, their common spiritual link to Rastafari was undeniable. Donisha was received with love by all, not simply because of her lineage to reggae royalty, but because her tongue spoke the same language and her heart beat to the same Nyabinghi drums of Rasta people worldwide. Donisha's pursuit of Rasta knowledge brought so many pieces of the puzzle together and the viewer will appreciate the effort this documentary took to show Rasta in all aspects of life in the puzzle pieces located around the world.

Donisha received gifts of stories on her grandfather, the legendary Bob Marley, from people who knew him personally. She also learned about the history of Leonard Howell, the first Rastafarian, and how he established Rastafarianism in the hills of Jamaica. Donisha wept when she learned about the persecution of Rasta that ensued when the Jamaican government felt the need to extinguish this peaceful rebellion which was teaching the descendants of slaves to open their eyes to new things and embrace African spirituality.

The history of Marcus Garvey and the coronation of Haile Selassie were other important gems in this film which do even more to validate this beautiful piece as a classroom history tool.

The breathtaking landscapes and heartical people Donisha embraces in the 8 countries she visits as well as the irie music throughout the film make it a 90 minute excursion to destinations pleasing to the Rasta in our heart. I would definitely recommend this film to every member of the splintered, destructively partisan and ineffective United States congress and urge them all to blaze it up while dem a chant praises to Haile Selassie I, learn about ital livity and sing ONE LOVE.
Yougahnese Williams, Writer-At-Large 

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

PAFF.ORG - "The Last Song Before War" - Yougahnese's Top Pick! (2.10.2014)

The Last Song Before The War   US Premiere

This amazing documentary chronicles the events in preparation for the annual music
festival in the in the city of Timbuktu in Mali. Set in the Sahara desert, this festival attracts musicians and music lovers from around the world and reinforces the bond among lovers of traditional Malian music as well as Mali-style style jazz, blues, funk, hip hop and rock and roll.

The Last Song Before the War  is laden with blues music, played by indigenous Malians. This film gave me confirmation that my father was accurate when he told me that the blues didn't come TO Africa, it came FROM Africa. The musicians in this documentary played soulful music that was reminiscent of of B.B. King, Muddy Waters and Robert Johnson and the film makes it evident that they have been playing these same blues songs note for note for centuries.

The documentary also gave a heartwarming portrayal of Toureg life in Mali. The annual music festival is centered around the time when the nomadic Touregs unite as one group after going long periods of time without seeing their friends and family. After being bombarded with so many negative images of the Touregs in the media in recent months, it was very interesting to learn more about the Touregs via their music, dance, culture and women's empowerment movement among the groundbreaking females on stage. In addition, what made the film so compelling was its succinct yet very informative portrayal of the international military actions that lead to the exile of the residents of Timbuktu as well as the annual music festival itself.
This film is a definite must see.  
Yougahnese Williams, Writer-At-Large 
More Details regarding the PAFF.ORG Festival - Twitter @PaffNOW


This hilarious, high action, fast paced improv and stand up comedic event never let the audience miss a beat. Extremely interactive, sarcastic, witty and full of talented-up-and coming comedians. This event (hosted by Fonzworth Bentley - who knew straight away about the City of Beverly Hills Centennial Celebrations!) was the perfect Monday night treat for everyone who needed a pick-me-up to start the week off fabulously.
The talented cast included, Ron G., Dante Barrett, Sydney Castillo, Gabrielle Dennis, Zanaib Johnson, Simone Shepard and Reggie Flenory. There were lots of laughs and wonderful opportunities to mold the improv skills in ways that tickled your fancy.  Yougahnese Williams, Writer-At-Large

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

The City of Beverly Hills Centennial Celebration - Spotlight @ Saban Theater & Crustaceans Beverly Hills

The Beautiful Vivica Fox walking the Red Carpet
Crustaceans BH
Happy Chinese New Year - The Year of the Horse
Photography -

The Brilliant Founder  - Conductor
of Los Angeles Lawyers Philharmonic - Gary S. Greene Esq.
Carla Thomas
We are having such a blast in the City of Beverly Hills, Celebrating 100 Years of the City of Beverly Hills
 is so wonderful!... The Saban Theater is so stately and beautiful. That's where the City of Beverly Hills Centennial held the Kick-Off Celebration & Sing-Along (Jan 28, 2014)
started, and it was grand!

Look at the beautiful Vivica Fox, doing her thing, on the
Red Carpet, at Crustaceans Beverly Hills(Feb 5, 2014)
 The House of AN  threw down in the kitchen!
 If you get a chance to dine at Crustaceans BH, don't blame me if you get addicted to the Garlic Noodles....Yum!
StudioMusica USAChiara Bonfatti 
& I.AM. DJ , Managing Director, StudioMusica USA
Marco Marchesi 
Check out some familiar faces and check back again - and tell a friend, to see what's happening next!
Truly, Carla
Publisher of The Beverly Hills CourierClifton S. Smith Jr. 
& Carla Thomas 
Carla Thomas & Phil Savenick, Emmy Award winning Producer, - TV is OK Productions, Writer, Committee Chair, Producer of the Documentary
"Beverly Hills: 100 Years, 100 Stories"