Liz Barclay

Stalley Continues To Rep His Home State In Upcoming New Era Collaboration

Stalley puts his "blue collar" touch on forthcoming collaboration with New Era.

Besides his smooth rap cuts, Ohio rapper Stalley is known for three things: his affinity for classic cars, a stealthy sneaker game and rocking the Cleveland Indians' Crooked C hat like a uniform.

Fresh from releasing a new mixtape dubbed The Laughing Introvert, the Blue Collar Gang leader is already onto his next project: an upcoming hat collaboration with international lifestyle and sports brand, New Era.

On a sunny Monday afternoon in New York City (Aug. 24), an Indians jersey-clad Stalley strolled into New Era's New York City office and let VIBE sit in on a private design session where the rapper put his skilled sartorial eye to use. Here, the bearded MC shares the details on his New Era collaboration, throwing a pitch at an Indians game as a kid and his latest tape.—Ashley Monaé

VIBE: How did the idea of this collaboration with New Era come about?
Stalley: I’m a big fan of New Era. Always have been since I was a child. We’ve built a relationship over the years so the idea of the collaboration was a mutual thing.

Can you recall the first New Era hat you copped as a kid?
Wow, that’s a good question. It probably wasn’t an Indians hat, which is funny. [Laughs.] It might have been a Cavaliers hat. Nope, I’m lying actually. It was an Indians hat. I remember it was either third or fourth grade, and I got to throw out the first pitch at the game. It’s really a crazy story. My elementary teacher's husband worked with the minor league team, the Akron Arrows. I did well in school and her, her husband and two daughters took me to the game. They surprised me with throwing out the first pitch. Sandy Alomar was the catcher at the time. And that’s when I got my first hat, an Indians hat.

Welcome to the big leagues. #FirstPitchStalley

A photo posted by stalley (@stalley) on

Wow, that's funny because you're always rocking the Crooked C hat.
I like to take responsibility for making the Crooked C hat popular actually. [Laughs.] I remember looking for a different Indians hat because I always wore the Ohio Crown or something repping the state, and I wanted something other than those traditional styles. I think I found it in, like, Cooperstown. I remember telling my manager to order every single one they had on the site. I wore them a lot, and fans used to always ask me where I got them but I couldn’t tell them because I got them off the site. I didn’t know of any actual stores that sold them. But after a while, I started seeing them in a few different places, and people would come to my shows and ask me to sign them, so it’s a really cool thing.

Aside from this collaboration, you have your own clothing line with your brand Blue Collar Gang, too. Are you just as hands-on in the designing process?
Definitely. Outside of music, people know me for cars, fashion and sneakers. I’m definitely hands-on with everything because I’m real big on the particulars. I want everything to look right. I want everything to be a direct reflection of something I would actually wear, and not just making something for the consumer. I myself want to be able to wear the things I’m putting my brand on and feel confident and comfortable selling it myself. It’s hard to sell something if you wouldn’t sell it yourself, you know.

READ: Stalley Seizes His Moment With Debut Album ‘Ohio’

So how would you describe your personal style since it's a direct reflection of your brand?
Just like my cars, man. Clean and classic. [Laughs.] I come from the Midwest and everyone was hardworking and real blue collar, so that’s where Blue Collar Gang comes from. Massillon is as blue collar as it gets. There are 32,000 people and a lot of them wore uniforms, whether they were cops, firemen, mechanics, or working at steel factories. That type of industry is heavy so growing up, I always saw people dressed up, whether it was a suit or Dickies or Carhart. That’s really where my style comes from so it's always been simplistic, clean and to the point. I wanted the collaboration with New Era to have the same feel—something clean that you could wear everyday. It's not loud and you could throw it on with anything.

A photo posted by stalley (@stalley) on

What can fans expect from the upcoming collaboration?
Tradition and pride. Where I’m from, New Era definitely represents tradition, so in a sense, sports memorabilia is equivalent to a collector’s items or even a trophy. For a lot of people, this is as close that we can get to being a part of the team, you know [Laughs.] This is how we show our pride so I definitely wanted to bring that feeling to Ohio and stamp it with my brand, as well as give back to the city and state, and give them something that can be proud to wear. I want them to be able to go to the games, to school and even to work with this hat on and feel proud that someone from this state is representing their home team at the same time.

We can't forget to mention the latest mixtape you put out titled The Laughing Introvert. You just dropped your debut album, Ohio, in late October of last year and you're already back. What prompted this release?
I’m always working and I'm always in the studio creating, so really I wanted to give the fans something. I know a lot of them supported me with the album and came out to the tour stops I've had here in the States and overseas, so I felt like it was time to give them something. My music is naturally for the summer and warmer months too, so I had to give them something they could ride to and enjoy. The project is short with only seven tracks, but it definitely captures a certain vibe I wanted to give off. I feel like there’s no fun or feeling in the music anymore so I wanted to give the people a project that they could enjoy and really create a sound that people would forever remember where they were when they first heard it.

Unlike Ohio, The Laughing Introvert doesn't have big name features. Was that a conscious effort on your part?
Yeah, I just wanted it to not be so feature-heavy and just put together good music on my own. It was a conscious decision, but at the same time it wasn’t because I was just working and vibing. It’s funny actually because the few guys that are featured just happened to stop by the studio and we’d work. It just happened to be the right situation at the right time, and everything came together perfect.

Stream Stalley's The Laughing Introvert here.


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Kush & Splendor: 5 CBD Beauty Products That’ll Take Your Self-Care Routine From 0 To 100

Lotions, creams, and salves—oh my! With cannabidiol (CBD) popping up in just about every product you can imagine, the cannabis-infused beauty industry is clearly on the come-up. In fact, analysts predict that the “wellness” movement—as well as the legalization of Mary Jane across the world—will help rake in $25 billion globally in the next 10 years, according to Business Insider. That’s 15 percent of the $167 billion skincare market.

And what better way to up the ante on one’s wellness routine than with all-natural CBD? Just ask Dr. Lana Butner, naturopathic doctor and acupuncturist at NYC’s Modrn Sanctuary, who incorporates CBD in her treatments.

“CBD is a fantastic addition to acupuncture sessions for both its relaxation and anti-inflammatory, pain-relieving effects,” Butner shares with Vixen. “The calming effects of CBD allows for patients to deeply relax into the treatment and really tap into the parasympathetic nervous system, which is responsible for rest, digestion and muscle repair/regeneration.”

She adds that CBD’s pain-relieving effects are “far-reaching,” from muscular and joint pains to migraines and arthritis—and even IBS and indigestion.

The magic lies in CBD’s ability to impact endocannabinoid receptor activity in our bodies. Without getting too wordy, our bodies come equipped with a system called the endocannabinoid system (ECS), which is the HBIC over our sleep, appetite, pain and immune system response. Also known as cannabidiol, CBD teams up with this system to help reduce inflammation and interact with neurotransmitters. According to Healthline, CBD has also been scientifically shown to impact the brain’s receptors for serotonin, the neurotransmitter responsible for regulating our mood and social behavior.

All that said, it’s important to note that not all CBD products are created equal. Many brands cashing in on the green beauty wave use hemp seed oil, sometimes referred to as cannabis sativa seed oil, in place of CBD... which doesn’t make them any less great! Hemp seed oil is actually high in antioxidants, amino acids, and omega-3 and -6 fatty acids—all of which are for your skin.

“It’s generally viewed as a superfood and is great for adding nutritional value to your diet,” Ashley Lewis, co-founder of Fleur Marché, told Well and Good last month. “In terms of skin care, it’s known as a powerful moisturizer and skin softener that doesn’t clog pores or contribute to oily skin.”

However, when companies start marketing CBD and hemp oil as one-in-the-same, that’s when things get a bit tricky.

“The biggest issue is that hemp seed oil and CBD are two totally different compounds that come from different parts of the hemp plant, have different makeups, and different benefits,” Lewis added. “Marketing them as the same thing just isn’t accurate and does a disservice to consumers who are expecting certain benefits that they won’t get from hemp seed oil and who are often paying more for what they think is CBD.”

So if you’re looking to benefit from the perks specifically attributed to CBD, make sure you’re reading labels before buying, and don’t be afraid to ask questions. Hell, ask for a product’s test results, while you’re at it. It never hurts to be sure.

Now that we’ve got that out of the way, are you ready to see what all the hype is about? For this 4/20, we rounded up a few CBD (and hemp!)-infused products to help give your self-care routine a bit of a boost. Looks like your holiday just got that much kushier. You’re welcome!

Note: Data and regulations surrounding CBD and its use are still in development. That said, please don’t take anything written in this post as medical or legal advice, and definitely double check the laws in your state. Also, please do your body a favor and hit up your doctor before trying any new supplements. We’re just tryna look out for you. Okay? Okay. Read on.

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Mo'Nique Shines In Donald Glover's Short Films For His Adidas Collection

No matter where she is, Mo'Nique will always shine. The comedian was a pleasant surprise in Donald Glover's series of short films released Thursday (April 18) in tandem with his collection with Adidas.

The films, titled Timber, 1985, Avocado, Polenta and Dusty feature both actors with underlying themes related to Glover's reimagined designs on the Nizza, the Continental 80 and  Lacombe. Throughout the films, Mo'Nique teases Glover with digs at his celebrity, calling him "a little booty baby,"  and comparing his forehead to a stop sign.

Mo'Nique shoed love to Glover and hinted towards another collabo they might have in the future.


— Mo'Nique Worldwide (@moworldwide) April 18, 2019

The comedian and regal films are a perfect juxtaposition to Glover's approach on his collection."Rich is a concept,” Glover said in a press release about the collection. “With this project, I wanted to encourage people to think about how their stories can be told on their feet. Value isn’t quantified by what you wear, rather the experiences from them. And you make the decision on what works for you, you live through your own lens. The partnership for me is about being able to exemplify what doing your own thing truly looks and feels like."

The shoes carry a deconstructed style like uneven stitching, inside-out golden eyestays and handpainted three stripe design. The Lacombe will run for $90, the Nizza for $80 and the Continental 80 for $100.

Glover recently teased the shoes during his time at Coachella, air dropping fans at random images of the shoes for them to pick up at the brand's installation.

Check them out below and enjoy the short films above.


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Jamie Foxx and Grey Goose take over The Times Square Edition bar to Live Victoriously launch event.
Jamie McCarthy for Getty Images – The Times Square Edition

Jamie Foxx Takes Over Grey Goose Happy Hour, Announces Comedy Tour

Leave it to Jamie Foxx to take over a New York City happy hour. To celebrate the launch of Grey Goose's latest campaign, Live Victoriously, the actor and comedian made a surprise appearance at The Time Square EDITION Hotel on Tuesday (April 16).

As attendees were treated to after-work cocktails like "Angel of Music" (Grey Goose vodka, sparkling rosé, and lemon cardamom) and "The Grey Goose Martini" (Grey Goose vodka, dry vermouth, orange bitters with a twist of lemon), Foxx walked behind the bar, took over and mingled with attendees. Bar-goers joined him behind the bar, danced, showcased some dancing and rapping talents on the impromptu "Grey Goose Idol" and jammed out to songs like "Blame It" (feat. T-Pain). Later in the evening, Pepa of Salt-N-Pepa made an appearance, Foxx cracked jokes and announced his upcoming, Kill the Comedian Tour, his first stand-up tour since his last comedy special in 2003.

As Jamie busted throwback moves behind the bar with bar-goers, comedians Aidy Bryant of Shrill and SNL’s Colin Jost made surprise appearances at Brooklyn's Extra Fancy and the Financial District's Underdog. Bryant and Jost performed spontaneous stand-up comedy routines and played a small game of sending selfies to each other.

Scroll through more photos from Jamie Foxx's appearance at Grey Goose's Live Victoriously event down below. Like Foxx wrote in his Instagram post, "Sometimes you gotta turn up on a Tuesday" and celebrating life's small, everyday moments.

Turning a random Tuesday into a night to remember. This is how to #LiveVictoriously ✌🏽. @iamjamiefoxx

— Grey Goose (@GreyGoose) April 17, 2019

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