Hittin' the Street with 50 Cent

You may have been shaking your head when SMS Audio announced at the end of 2011 that they were partnering with The Street King himself to release a line of 50 Cent branded headphones. We know we were. Dre already had his huge Beats by Dre line and Luda had SOUL by Ludacris. Did the music world need another pair of celebrity cans? Probably not, but we’re here to tell you that, despite the market being pretty flooded with celebri-phones, the third time is definitely the charm. SMS Audio by 50 Cent hits the sweet spot in more ways than any of his competitors with headphones that provide great design, hardcore durability, and sweet sound. 50’s headphones come in three flavors (each with several color options): The $399.95 SYNC by 50 (Over-Ear Wireless Headphones), the $249.95 STREET by 50 (Over-Ear Wired Headphones), and the $119.95 STREET by 50 (In-Ear Wired Headphones). We were sent over a pair of the black STREET by 50 Over-Ear Wired Headphones for review so those are the ones we’ll be evaluating here. Powered by “professionally tuned” 40mm drivers, these cans produce some loud beats. And we’re not kidding when we mean loud. The STREET by 50 headphones are some of the loudest headphones we’ve ever tried. So loud, in fact, that it leads to one of the headphones’ few downfalls. They’re so loud that when you turn them up all the way, anyone in the room is going to hear your tunes. And we’re not talking about some reverberation or the low thump of bass. They’re going to hear everything – all the way down to the lyrics themselves. This might not be an issue for some users, but one of the reasons we wear headphones is to prevent annoying everyone around us. That said, the sound produced by 50 Cent’s headphones is top notch. 50 claims he wanted “studio sound” from these headpieces and he’s not far off. The sound isn’t perfect – it could use a little boost in the mid to mid-lows – but it is fantastic. The spec sheet says they provide “enhanced bass” and I’d say that’s accurate. The bass is solid and accurate without being over the top. Fidelity is nice and the soundstage is surprisingly large (especially in comparison to its SOUL and Beats competitors) with great handling of acoustic instruments like guitars as well. This all makes for a really well-rounded pair of headphones. The STREET by 50 design is sleek and comfortable. The memory foam ear cushions are a bit more rounded than you’ll find on its competitors, but they’re very kind on the ear (even during marathon listening sessions). And if you’re looking for a pair of cans that you can beat the hell out of and they’ll still keep working, these are the pair for you. Durability is off the charts. You can literally bend these things in ways you wouldn’t even imagine trying with other headphones and they still snap right back into place. The one major downfall of the STREET by 50 Over-Ear Wired Headphones is the lack of active noise cancellation. Instead, they use what SMS Audio calls “Passive Noise Cancellation,” which might as well be called not much noise cancellation. There’s quite a bit of outside noise leaking in as you listen (and the previously mentioned noise leaking out). It’s not overly distracting – and the fact that the headphones pump music so loud somewhat offsets this – but if you’re looking for a headphone that can completely drown out the outside world, these just aren’t going to cut it. If you’re at home or in the studio, they’ll be fine. But if you’re listening on a crowded plane or in the subway, you’re be pretty annoyed. The STREET by 50 headphones, regardless, are a damn fine entry into the headphone game. 50 Cent reportedly had a hand in every aspect of the creation of his line and it shows with his attention to detail. They’re a great all-around headphone with some highlight features (bangin’ sound and durability) and very few missteps (lack of active noise cancellation). If you’re in the market for a new pair of cans, and have a couple hundred bucks to spend you could do a lot worse than 50’s new line. We haven’t put our Beats by Dre back on our ears since these came in and we’re totally fine with that. Written by @scottneumyer

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Tyler Perry Orders Independent Autopsy For Nephew Who Died In Louisiana Prison

Tyler Perry has hired a medical examiner to perform a second autopsy on his nephew’s remains after the 26 year old was found dead inside his cell at Louisiana's Union Parish Detention Center earlier in the week. Gavin Porter’s death was reported as a suicide but Perry and his family don’t believe that he took his own life.

Porter was serving 20 years for manslaughter after fatally shooting his father in front of his mother, Perry’s sister, over a “senseless argument,” the writer-director wrote on Instagram on Thursday (Feb. 27).

“The murder shook our entire family,” Perry shared. “Despite his horrible act, before he went to prison I went to see him in the local jail. I assured him that we all still loved him, but it was important to all of us, including his mother, that he was punished for this horrific crime that he committed. He was sentenced to 20 years in prison.

“Call me naive, but it was my hope that after serving his time, and really reflecting and showing much remorse and asking God for forgiveness, that he would have been able to come to work for me, joining all the other former inmates who work for me and turn his life around just as they have. But that day will never come.”

Officials told the family that Porter was placed in solitary confinement last weekend following a fight with other inmates.

“Three days ago, I got the horrible news that he allegedly committed suicide in prison,” Perry continued. “I say allegedly because, unfortunately, our criminal justice system and prisons have been notorious for cover ups and/or getting it wrong.”

Perry hired former New York City medical examiner, Dr. Michael Baden, who investigated JFK’s assassination, testified at the O.J. Simpson trial, and performed independent autopsies on Mike Brown and Aaron Hernandez, among others. The result of Porter’s second autopsy are expected “soon,” according to Perry.

The prison requested an investigation into Porter’s death and the alleged fight that occurred prior to his passing. “We respect the family’s right to request another autopsy to be done. This is not an unusual request.We are continuing our investigation and awaiting autopsy results,” a rep for the Union Parish Sheriff’s Office told TMZ in a statement.

Union Parish Detention Center has made headlines before over its treatment of inmates. In 2018, the prison settled a discrimination complaint for placing a detainee in segregation for six months because he was HIV positive. The following year, two prison guards were arrested for beating an inmate that complained about not getting a lunch tray. Another guard was fired and charged with malfeasance in office and simple battery for attacking an inmate “who was causing a disturbance” from his cell.

Read Perry’s full statement below.

 

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My Nephew Gavin Porter

A post shared by Tyler Perry (@tylerperry) on Feb 27, 2020 at 2:15pm PST

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Los Angeles Lakers' Kobe Bryant reacts during the Game 6 of the 2008 NBA Finals in Boston, Massachusetts, June 17, 2008.
GABRIEL BOUYS/AFP

Kobe Bryant’s Sister Gets Tattoo In Honor Of Her Late Brother And Niece

Kobe Bryant’s sister immortalized her late brother and niece with a new tattoo. Sharia Washington’s tattoo features a black mamba snake shaped to look like an infinity sign with Kobe and Gigi's basketball numbers “2” and “24.”

Washington posted an image of the tattoo on Instagram on Wednesday (Feb. 26) thanking artist, Peter Barrios, for his work.

Vanessa Bryant reposted the image with the caption, “My sister-in-law got this cool tattoo to honor #GigiBryant and #Kobe. 2-24 forever. Love you @shariawash.

 

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Thank you @peterbarriostattoo 🙏🐍💕

A post shared by Sharia Washington (@shariawash) on Feb 26, 2020 at 5:26pm PST

 

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A post shared by Sharia Washington (@shariawash) on Jan 31, 2020 at 12:43pm PST

LeBron James and fellow Lakers player, Anthony Davis, got tattoos in Kobe’s honor last month.

The lives of the NBA legend and his 13-year-old daughter were celebrated during a public memorial held at the Staples Center earlier in the week, where Vanessa eulogized her late husband and daughter.

The memorial included speeches from Michael Jordan and Shaquille O’Neal, as well as performances from Beyonce, Alicia Keys, and Christina Aguilera.

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Dylann Roof Stages Reported Hunger Strike After Accusing Prison Staff Of Harassment And Abuse

Dylann Roof reportedly staged a hunger strike in prison  because he says he's being “targeted by staff,” harassed and abused.

The White supremacist mass murderer, who is on death row for killing nine Black parishioners at a historically Black church in Charleston, S.C. in 2015 and is the first person to receive the death penalty for a hate crime, sent a letter to the Associated Press earlier in the month accusing prison staff of mistreatment. Roof also alleges that staff feels justified because he’s “hated by the general public.”

Roof is imprisoned at Terre Haute Federal Prison in Terre, Ind. The 25-year-old killer was attacked by a fellow inmate in 2016. Roof now alleges that he has been the subject of unprovoked harassment and abuse and “treated disproportionately harsh.”

Roof launched the hunger strike after allegedly being mistreated by a Bureau of Prisons disciplinary hearing officer amid previous complaints over being refused access to a copy machine.

Roof’s allegations have yet to be verified. His lawyers are currently appealing his death sentence.

According to his letter to AP, Roof claimed that his hunger strike lasted “several days.” He ended the strike because he passed out after corrections officer tried to “forcibly” take his blood and put an IV in his arm.

“I feel confident I could have gone much, much longer without food,” Roof wrote in the letter. “It’ just not worth being murdered over.”

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