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Janelle Monáe Talks Upcoming Single, Video and Diddy: "I'm His Boss"

When your album is one of the most anticipated releases of 2010, such pressure on most artists would be crushing. But not for Janelle Monáe. With her full-length debut The ArchAndroid set to drop on May 18, and its first single “Tightrope” (featuring one-time mentor Big Boi of OutKast fame) still making noise, the soul-rock rebel is already gearing up for her next musical statement.

“My next single is “Cold War” and we already shot the video,” Monáe told VIBE of the dramatic clip. “I actually saw it for the first time a few days ago. It’s touching…it makes me cry every time I watch it. It’s a very venerable song and moment and video for me.” For the original treatment of the video, Monáe envisioned a movie-style feel for “Cold War’s” overtly emotional, theatrical lyricism. “But it was a one-take shot and I decided to leave it at that,” she explains. “I had more intended for it, but once I saw this one-take I said, ‘oh, this is it.’ This is what I connected to most.”

One other aspect of the ArchAndroid project that still has many music fans talking is her surprising union with Sean “Diddy” Combs’ Bad Boy Records. Witnessing the more mainstream, commercial centered Diddy join up with the left field, genre-jumping Monáe is indeed a head-scratcher. But Monáe believes that longtime fans need not worry. 

“Well, this is a partnership and it’s a very unique one,” she says of her Bad Boy affiliation. “I have my own recording label, the Wonderland Arts Society. Sean Combs came into my life while I was already releasing Metropolis Suite I of IV: The Chase. He’s a huge champion of the Wonderland Arts Society and myself. He’s an endorser of our campaign, mission and message. Further more, I’m his boss [laughs]. This is not the story of man meets artist…he respects me for who I am. And he respects our ideas. He’s been very supportive of what’s going on; he wants to help us expose our message to the mainland.”

Janelle Monáe is scheduled to open up dates for Erykah Badu’s upcoming Out My Mind, Just In Time tour starting May 23 in Boston.—Keith Murphy



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Illinois Man Awarded $1.25 Million After Cops Tackled Him For Stealing His Own Car

A former Northwestern University doctoral student was awarded $1.25 million after police tackled the then 25-year old assuming he was trying to steal a car that was actually his own.

The Associated Press reports Evanston City Manager Wally Bobkiewicz confirmed the settlement amount had been reached Wednesday. (Jan. 23) Crosby was an engineering major in 2015 when the incident occurred.

Crosby’s attorney Timothy Touhy said his client was attempting to repair something with his car when a white woman watching called local police to report what she thought was a robbery.

The unidentified woman then followed Crosby in his car as he left his apartment and headed to a science building on Northwestern's campus, giving police his location.

Crosby reportedly exited his vehicle with his hands up but was immediately tackled by law enforcement when he didn't obey orders to get on the ground. Cops later determined Crosby was the owner of the vehicle but charged him with resisting arrest.

A spokesman for the Evanston police said the use of force was justified at the time because officers assumed a theft was in progress. Crosby was the victim of knee strikes and open-handed strikes.

A judge threw out the charges.

“It’s his hope that as a result of this case, that all of us begin a discussion on implicit bias and begin to recognize it and begin to discuss it between yourselves and your friends,” said Steven Yonover, who represented Crosby in the case.

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10 Year Old Commits Suicide After Being Bullied For Colostomy Bag

A 10-year-old Kentucky boy committed suicide after being bullied incessantly by classmates, who reportedly picked on for using a colostomy bag.

Seven Bridges' mother found him dead in the closet on Saturday (Jan. 19). Tami Charles was reportedly out grocery shopping, and the boy's father Donnie was at a church choir practice. Charles called Seven, her only child, a miracle baby, as she was told that she wouldn't be able to have children.

"Seven had a tough start. He was born with a condition that required a colostomy bag. Even after several surgeries, he would still have problems with leaks. Charles said it became a reason for kids to make fun of him," reports WHAS11 in Kentucky. According to Charles, her son underwent 26 surgeries from the time he was born.

"WHAS11 talked to Charles and Seven in September after an alleged bullying incident on his bus ride home from Kerrick Elementary School," the site continues. This is unfortunately not the first time bullying has severely affected Seven and his family. "He said he was called the N-word by a student. His friend told him to beat-up that student, and when Seven refused, he said the bus buddy started choking him." This incident was detailed on Tami's Facebook page.

Seven, who was planning on going to another school to start sixth grade, was told by his mother than the bullying would end when he changed schools.

“The balls that were dropped,” Tami said of the flawed system that couldn't protect bullying victims at the school. “It wasn't that [Jefferson County Public Schools] didn't have these tools, they just weren't at our school. It wasn't that they didn't have these tools to help the victims of bullying, they just weren't there, they weren't used."

Due to the manner of the boy's death, insurance will not cover the costs of his funeral. If you'd like to help the family, please click here.

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Michael B. Jordan To Star In 'gen:LOCK' Anime Series

Michael B. Jordan will be lending his lady-loved voice to a new anime series,"gen:LOCK," for Rooster Teeth.

In the new series, Jordan will be playing Julian Chase. The show is described as "50 years in the future, where an oppressive authoritarian force threatens to conquer the world. So a daring team is recruited to pilot a new form of weaponized neuroscience that powers devastating mecha. However, this team must be willing to sacrifice everything to save the world," according to Shadow and Act.

“He is willing to lay his life on the line for the greater good. He had a lot of heroic qualities to him that made it easy for me to be like ‘cool, I want to voice this guy,’” Jordan told SyfyWire about his reason for picking the role.

Way too excited to show you guys the final trailer for #genLock all my real followers/fans know how much I’m an Anime fan and this show fulfilled one of my life-long dreams of voicing a character on an animated show. Jan 26th it’s going to get crazy on @roosterteeth

A post shared by Michael B. Jordan (@michaelbjordan) on Jan 17, 2019 at 9:38am PST

The first two episodes of gen:LOCK will premiere on Jan. 26 on Rooster Teeth, which is available on iOS, Andriod, Xbox One, and Apple TV. (RoosterTeeth.com's memberships start at $4.99 a month.) Watch the trailer for the series up top.

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