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RZA Donates Funds To Chess Program For Imprisoned Youth

The Wu-Tang Clan's RZA has proven that cash really does rule everything around him as the New York rapper recently donated funds to a developing chess program set to teach jailed youth in St. Louis how to play the game.

According to Okayplayer, the new program is the work of the Hip-Hop Chess Federation, an organization founded in 2006 to "fuse logic and the arts." RZA, now a board member for the outreach group, said that the purpose of the growing program is to provide gamers with lessons that can be applied to inevitable life circumstances.

"It’s a game of chess in one sense but in another it’s a study of life," he said. "We in the Hip-Hop Chess Federation are striving to bring awareness to Americans, to Black youth, but to the whole of American youth… That chess study, along with martial arts, along with music is the best way to help develop your mind and body and protect you from pitfalls in life that will surely come at you."

RZA, real name Robert Fitzgerald Diggs, has had his fair share of run-ins with the law in the past. Last month, the musician elaborated on his time in the system and what he believe leads young people to governmental trouble in a discussion with 400 imprisoned juveniles.

"Y’all are in here for not controlling your energy, yo," he said. "You are here now for not being analytical about the results of the actions you have taken. I’m the last one to talk in some sense. I’ve been through the same system. Me and my brother got our first gun, when I was 11 or 12…Riding NY city buses looking for what they call, a vic.'"

RZA isn't the first rapper to give back to the those in need as of late. Last month, Lupe Fiasco announced the development of his Neighborhood Start Fund, a nonprofit organization created to give young entrepreneurs in underserved areas opportunities turn their ideas into startup projects for societal improvement.

Great job, fellas!

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Kerry Lathan, Man Injured In Nipsey Hussle Shooting, Breaks Silence

Kerry Lathan, the man who was shot alongside the late Nipsey Hussle outside of the rapper's Marathon Clothing store in Los Angels last month, is breaking his silence. Lathan recently spoke to KCAL about his last moments with Nip and his subsequent arrest for a parole violation.

Lathan was reportedly shot in the back on Mar. 31. According to doctors, the bullet will have to stay wedged in his back. They fear that he will be permanently confined to a wheelchair if they try to remove it.

"I have a bullet in my back. Fragment in it broke off near my spine. They say if we take it out, there’s a possibility you could be paralyzed," Lathan said.

Instead of focusing on his recovery, however, Lathan has been fighting the legal system. He was arrested shortly after shooting for a parole violation. The 56-year-old has been on parole for seven months after completing a 25-year prison sentence. Associating with Nipsey, a former gang member, was a violation of his parole terms.

Lathan said he considered the rapper a social advocate who was just trying to give him some clothes on the day of the shooting. "He told me that he would have the shirt that I needed next week and I said okay," he recalled. "And as I turned it was all bad."

He continued: "I didn’t have no idea of any of that. I know they said [Hussle] was a Rolling 60s. That’s not what he is today,” he explained. “He’s a celebrity. I took a picture with a celebrity. I met him once, took a selfie."

Lathan remembers Nipsey as a person who left the gang activity behind and focused on doing better for himself and his community. "If you say a person has made a change or a metamorphosis, you can’t take an inchworm, then turn it into a butterfly, and put him back into an inchworm. That’s what Nipsey did,” Lathan later said during a press conference on Wednesday (April 24). "He transformed around there and tried to make money off his rap albums to help the community, to give back when there was no one giving back. So how can you put a halo and then put horns?"

Lathan's attorney, Lauren Noreiga told KCAL that her client's recent arrest is a testimony to the legal system's flaws. "The law is written in a way where really reformed and rehabilitated gang members have no opportunity to be seen as a reformed and rehabilitated in the eyes of the law," Noreiga added.

As previously reported, Nipsey Hussle died of multiple gunshot wounds on Mar. 31. Eric Holder, the suspected shooter, has since been charged with one count of murder, two counts of attempted murder, and one count of possession of a firearm by a felon.

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Schoolboy Q Drops New Album 'CrasH Talk'

Schoolboy Q's new album, CrasH Talk is here. The rapper's fifth studio album arrived on Friday (April 26).

The album is comprised of 14 tracks and features special appearances from Travis Scott, Ty Dolla $ign, 21 Savage, YG, Kid Cudi, Lil Baby, and 6lack. It includes the pre-released track, "CrasH."

According to Q, this wasn't the first version of his album. He actually canned two albums because "they were trash." At the time, he said he was going through a lot of lows in his life. "I'd be in the house smoking weed, just waiting to go to the studio every day," Q told GQ. "That's not a good life. That brings on depression."

It was his fellow TDE members Kendrick Lamar and Jay Rock that inspired him to keep working on the album. And the rest is history. CrasH Talk follows 2016's Blank Face. Stream the new project below.

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Wendy Williams Reportedly Hires New Manager After Firing Estranged Husband

Wendy Williams hired a new team members after splitting from her estranged husband, Kevin Hunter, earlier in the month and firing him as her manager.

Veteran producer Bernie Young has signed on as Williams’ manager and executive producer of The Wendy Williams Show, Page Six reports. Young replaces Williams’ estranged husband who was reportedly booted as executive producer of the show after she served him with divorce papers.

Young worked as co-executive producer of the Rosie O’Donnell Show from 1996 until 2002, and Martha Stewarts’s talk show, Martha, from 2005 until 2012.

Williams split from Hunter amid rumors that he had been cheating on her for several years with a woman named, Sharina Hudson. Hunter and Hudson allegedly welcomed a child together late last month. Williams supposedly gave Hunter only 48 hours to move out, and cut off his funds.

Following news of the split, Hunter released a statement apologizing to Williams. “I am not proud of my recent actions and take full accountability and apologize to my wife, my family and her amazing fans,” he said. “I am going through a time of self-reflection and am trying to right some wrongs.”

Aside from a few jokes and flirty comments, Williams hasn’t said much about the split from Hunter. The 54-year-old daytime talk show host, who has battled drug addiction, announced that she was moving out of the sober house that she had been living in following a reported relapse.

 

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