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buzzz worthy. . . By Mona Austin President Obama and Donald Trump met for the first time on Thursday to begin talks about the official...


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Friday, February 10, 2017

The Choir to Tour Classic WIDE EYED WONDER Album, Featuring Reunion with Former Member Robin Spurs


 
New Studio Album Planned for Late 2017
 
Nashville, TN - On the heels of a successful 2016 tour to celebrate their classic Circle Slide album, Grammy® nominated and Dove Award winning alternative music legends The Choir will usher in 2017 with another album-honoring tour. The focus of the band’s attention this time will be performing their best-selling 1989 release, Wide Eyed Wonder, in its entirety, alongside other favorite songs, both new and old, from the band. The album will also see a re-mastered reissue of the project on vinyl and CD. And, in what may seem like a dream to longtime fans, Wide Eyed Wonder's bass player, Robin Spurs, will reunite with the band for the tour.
 
Tomorrow, February 11th at 7:00pm CT, The Choir will give a special Facebook Live preview of the Wide Eyed Wonder Tour, which will stream live for free at Facebook.com/TheChoir.
 
Says the band’s Steve Hindalong, "It was a special season when we recorded Wide Eyed Wonder. My daughter Emily was born prior to the recording and she just turned 28, so I know exactly how long ago it was! And it was the Robin Spurs era. She brought an energy that was wonderful and spirited. It's gonna be so fun to rekindle our friendship and chemistry out on the ol' road. Feels like a fine time to rewind the clock to 1989.”
 
"Wow. What a unique opportunity to be able to revisit an era that was a true gift,” Spurs weighed in. “The Choir is one of those rare, favorite bands that I was blessed to be a part of, even if for just 2½ years.  I am humbled and honored to be invited to join Steve, Derri, and Dan on the road once again for the upcoming Wide Eyed Wonder Tour...part deux!"
 
Wide Eyed Wonder is often cited as the most commercial album of the band’s career, while still maintaining their signature sonic experimentation. Songs such as “Someone To Hold On To”, “To Cover You” and “When She Sees Me” showcased the band’s more straightforward rock writing, while “Robin Had A Dream” and “Car, Etc.” continued to showcase the band’s penchant for experimental composition. The title track, “Wide Eyed Wonder” and “To Bid Farewell,” showcase a more sentimental side, albeit grounded in the band’s trademark lyrical honesty.
 
Band member Dan Michaels adds, "The Choir continues to move forward through creating new music and releasing indie albums. But we recognize the indelible mark that our classic albums like Circle SlideChase The Kangaroo and Wide Eyed Wonder placed upon the hearts of individuals. I’m excited about the future and proud to celebrate the past in this fashion.”
 
On January 31, The Choir launched a new PledgeMusic campaign to fan-fund a new studio album plus a re-mastering and re-issuing of Wide Eyed Wonder on vinyl and CD. Fans can currently pre-order the albums in digital, CD, and vinyl format on The Choir’s campaign page. The leaders in direct-to-fan platforms, PledgeMusic allows artists to get more personal with their fans, offering pledgers updates straight from the band and items not available anywhere else.
 
Pledgers who pre-order the album will receive the AccessPass which will give them early access to a digital download of the full album; plus exclusive updates, behind-the-scenes content, and sneak peeks into the recording process available only through PledgeMusic. Fans will also be able to pledge on special merchandise and one-of-a-kind experiences.  These include the opportunity to play on the band’s new studio album, acoustic personalized videos, signed acoustic guitars with hand-written lyrics, and others.
 
More information on the campaign is at pledgemusic.com/thechoir.
 
WIDE EYED WONDER Tour Dates
(more dates to be announced in the coming weeks)
March
17 – Lexington, KY
18 – Columbus, OH
19 – Akron, OH
21 – Franklin, IN
22 – St Louis, MO
23 – Moline, IL
24 – St Paul, MN
25 – Aurora, IL
26 – Livonia, MI
27 – Lockport, NY
25 – Owego, NY
29 – E. Brunswick Township, NJ
30 – Vienna, VA
 
April
20 – Spring TX
22 – Tulsa, OK
25 – Denver, CO
27 – Phoenix, AZ
28 – San Diego, CA
29 – Costa Mesa, CA
30 – Fresno, CA
 
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PREVENTING VIOLENCE AGAINST FEDERAL, STATE, TRIBAL, AND LOCAL LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICERS

EXECUTIVE ORDER

- - - - - - -

PREVENTING VIOLENCE AGAINST FEDERAL, STATE, TRIBAL,
AND LOCAL LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICERS


     By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, it is hereby ordered as follows:

     Section 1.  Policy.  It shall be the policy of the executive branch to:

     (a)  enforce all Federal laws in order to enhance the protection and safety of Federal, State, tribal, and local law enforcement officers, and thereby all Americans;

     (b)  develop strategies, in a process led by the Department of Justice (Department) and within the boundaries of the Constitution and existing Federal laws, to further enhance the protection and safety of Federal, State, tribal, and local law enforcement officers; and

     (c)  pursue appropriate legislation, consistent with the Constitution's regime of limited and enumerated Federal powers, that will define new Federal crimes, and increase penalties for existing Federal crimes, in order to prevent violence against Federal, State, tribal, and local law enforcement officers.

     Sec2.  Implementation.  In furtherance of the policy set forth in section 1 of this order, the Attorney General shall:

     (a)  develop a strategy for the Department's use of existing Federal laws to prosecute individuals who commit or attempt to commit crimes of violence against Federal, State, tribal, and local law enforcement officers;

     (b)  coordinate with State, tribal, and local governments, and with law enforcement agencies at all levels, including other Federal agencies, in prosecuting crimes of violence against Federal, State, tribal, and local law enforcement officers in order to advance adequate multi-jurisdiction prosecution efforts;

     (c)  review existing Federal laws to determine whether those laws are adequate to address the protection and safety of Federal, State, tribal, and local law enforcement officers;

     (d)  following that review, and in coordination with other Federal agencies, as appropriate, make recommendations to the President for legislation to address the protection and safety of Federal, State, tribal, and local law enforcement officers, including, if warranted, legislation defining new crimes of violence and establishing new mandatory minimum sentences for existing crimes of violence against Federal, State, tribal, and local law enforcement officers, as well as for related crimes;

     (e)  coordinate with other Federal agencies to develop an executive branch strategy to prevent violence against Federal, State, tribal, and local law enforcement officers;

     (f)  thoroughly evaluate all grant funding programs currently administered by the Department to determine the extent to which its grant funding supports and protects Federal, State, tribal, and local law enforcement officers; and

     (g)  recommend to the President any changes to grant funding, based on the evaluation required by subsection (f) of this section, including recommendations for legislation, as appropriate, to adequately support and protect Federal, State, tribal, and local law enforcement officers.

     Sec3.  General Provisions.  (a)  Nothing in this order shall be construed to impair or otherwise affect:

(i)   the authority granted by law to an executive department or agency, or the head thereof; or

(ii)  the functions of the Director of the Office of Management and Budget relating to budgetary, administrative, or legislative proposals.

     (b)  This order shall be implemented consistent with applicable law and subject to the availability of appropriations.

     (c)  This order is not intended to, and does not, create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or in equity by any party against the United States, its departments, agencies, or entities, its officers, employees, or agents, or any other person.



                                 DONALD J. TRUMP




THE WHITE HOUSE,
    February 9, 2017.


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TASK FORCE ON CRIME REDUCTION AND PUBLIC SAFETY

EXECUTIVE ORDER

- - - - - - -

TASK FORCE ON CRIME REDUCTION AND PUBLIC SAFETY


     By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, and in order to reduce crime and restore public safety to communities across the Nation, it is hereby ordered as follows:

     Section 1.  Policy.  It shall be the policy of the executive branch to reduce crime in America.  Many communities across the Nation are suffering from high rates of violent crime.  A focus on law and order and the safety and security of the American people requires a commitment to enforcing the law and developing policies that comprehensively address illegal immigration, drug trafficking, and violent crime.  The Department of Justice shall take the lead on Federal actions to support law enforcement efforts nationwide and to collaborate with State, tribal, and local jurisdictions to restore public safety to all of our communities.

     Sec2.  Task Force.  (a)  In furtherance of the policy described in section 1 of this order, I hereby direct the Attorney General to establish, and to appoint or designate an individual or individuals to chair, a Task Force on Crime Reduction and Public Safety (Task Force).  The Attorney General shall, to the extent permitted by law, provide administrative support and funding for the Task Force. 

     (b)  The Attorney General shall determine the characteristics of the Task Force, which shall be composed of individuals appointed or designated by him.

     (c)  The Task Force shall:

(i)    exchange information and ideas among its members that will be useful in developing strategies to reduce crime, including, in particular, illegal immigration, drug trafficking, and violent crime;

(ii)   based on that exchange of information and ideas, develop strategies to reduce crime;

(iii)  identify deficiencies in existing laws that have made them less effective in reducing crime and propose new legislation that could be enacted to improve public safety and reduce crime;

(iv)   evaluate the availability and adequacy of crime-related data and identify measures that could improve data collection in a manner that will aid in the understanding of crime trends and in the reduction of crime; and

(v)    conduct any other studies and develop any other recommendations as directed by the Attorney General.

     (d)  The Task Force shall meet as required by the Attorney General and shall be dissolved once it has accomplished the objectives set forth in subsection (c) of this section, as determined by the Attorney General.

     (e)  The Task Force shall submit at least one report to the President within 1 year from the date of this order, and a subsequent report at least once per year thereafter while the Task Force remains in existence.  The structure of the report is left to the discretion of the Attorney General.  In its first report to the President and in any subsequent reports, the Task Force shall summarize its findings and recommendations under subsections (c)(ii) through (c)(v) of this section.

     Sec3.  General Provisions.  (a)  Nothing in this order shall be construed to impair or otherwise affect:

(i)   the authority granted by law to an executive department or agency, or the head thereof; or

(ii)  the functions of the Director of the Office of Management and Budget relating to budgetary, administrative, or legislative proposals.

     (b)  This order shall be implemented consistent with applicable law and subject to the availability of appropriations.

     (c)  This order is not intended to, and does not, create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or in equity by any party against the United States, its departments, agencies, or entities, its officers, employees, or agents, or any other person.




                                 DONALD J. TRUMP




THE WHITE HOUSE,
    February 9, 2017.

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THE RUINS RELEASE THIRD SINGLE, "RUN"


Available at all digital service providers today
 
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (February 10, 2017) — Alt-pop duo The Ruins announce the release of their new single, “RUN,” to all digital service providers today. “RUN” can be downloaded from iTunes here or streamed on Spotify here
Co-written by the group’s own Debra Black and Victor Gonzalez, along with songwriter Jeff Bowman, “RUN” marks the third single in a series of releases from the Atlanta-based duo. Their inaugural single, “Deliverance,” debuted in May 2016. Since its exclusive premiere onNewReleaseToday.com, the song’s official music video has garnered more then 12,000 views to date. The Ruins’ second single, “Bow Down,” followed in early August. Now, kicking off 2017 with the release of “RUN,” The Ruins want to encourage listeners to flee from darkness and run toward the light—even when the future seems uncertain.
“This song reminds me that no matter how hard life gets, no matter how many ‘waves come crashing in,’ we have a choice to run to hope. We have a way of escape that has been offered to us through the most painful and darkest of times. We may not see what’s up ahead, but we can trust in the goodness and faithfulness of God,” Black says. “I am super pumped about this song, because as most of the songs we write, it talks about real life and comes from a place of personal experience.”
“I love that ‘RUN’ doesn’t discredit the fear of heading toward something that’s unknown. I think people are always scared to take a leap of faith and trust something they can’t see, but the message that you find in ‘RUN’ brings a picture of reality to mind that sometimes it’s better to head toward a hope you can’t see rather than being stuck where you feel like you’re just taking blow after blow,” Gonzalez offers. “I hope this song encourages people to take more leaps of faith in their life.”
The backstory of The Ruins is a leap of faith in and of itself. The two friends bonded through a common love of songwriting. It was on an international mission trip where Gonzalez found himself overlooking ancient ruins that his perspective on life and faith shifted. Meanwhile, back in Georgia, Black—who previously released a solo worship project and was leading worship at her local church—came to the realization that she needed a partner if she was going to pursue her dreams centered in pop music. When Gonzalez returned home, he and Black formed a deep friendship and musical partnership that resulted in The Ruins.
The EDM-heavy production, tight harmonies and perceptive lyrics found on their new single, “RUN,” give listeners a small taste of the creativity that defines this vocal/songwriting duo. To keep up with The Ruins, visit www.theruinsmusic.com.
ABOUT THE RUINS
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Thursday, February 9, 2017

Supreme Court Justice Kennedy isn't going anywhere and how it would affect the decision on the travel ban, abortion and more

buzzz worthy. . .

By Mona Austin

The word around Washington is that the Trump Administration has allegedly been sending signals to Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy to resign. It had been strongly rumored that Kennedy, the swing voter of the High Court, would retire at the end of the current term. Kennedy, 80, put those rumors to rest late last year saying he was not retiring. This means that the  stay on the Travel Ban Executive Order that is currently being challenged in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, should it meet its potential end in the Supreme Court, could get Kennedy's vote and break the probable tie. The four liberal judges would likely support cancelling the ban and the four conservatives would vote to keep it leaving the call in Kennedy's hands who could vote either way, but likely to vote against it. That's one of the considerations for now.


The installment of "universally" accepted Neil Gorsuch to the High Court was to be the smoke signal to indicate to Kennedy that his judicial legacy would be in good hands under Trump -- that another objective Conservative could fairly uphold some of the laws he believed in and instituted. It is doubtful that a man with Kennedy's level of impact and serveice would be worried about a junior justice defiling his work and their views are markedly different so the expectation that Gorsuch could somehow be a replacement voter for Kennedy does not compute. One need only look at the respective records to note the ideological differences in their approach to law.  Gorsuch has been identified as a strict Constiutionalist who does not tend to knock precedent.

Cik the links to compare their voting records:

Kennedy
Gorsuch

Daily Caller reports the Trump Administration has two others possble replacements in mind, who previously worked as clerks for Kennedy.
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CHAMPION IMMORTAL: Serena, goddess of the courts rises again to silence doubters

buzzz worthy. . .
OPINION

by Mona Austin




It is said that success is the best way to silence  doubters.  Tennis champ Serena Williams' racket has once again served as a nozzle.

Williams is receiving praise for her 23rd Grand Slam win  over her sister Venus in the Australian Open on January , Breaking the record she once tied with Steffi Graff for most singles wins, msking hisotryshe now tand alone.  But it was not long ago that sports journalists attempted to demote her for losing to a  lesser known player. 
Let' just set the record straight, shall we?

Serena Williams lost the Grand Slam, not her championship status or footprint on the ages and came back to prove once more that she is a formidable opponent.

Will Smith made a fitting comment about  Williams, at the  2015 Sports Illustrated Athlete of the Year ceremony where she was honored. He said Williams isn't suppose to be possible. Ironically, some of worst critics give the same thought a different meaning. We all know Williams has defied odds, like when she bounced back to champion status after suffering from a worn ankle and blood clots.  That's serious, but it did not stop her.  What Smith sees, however is far more dicerning than the media would see, her insdominable spirit.  Smith continued, "She represents a beacon of possibility."

With the crowning of  Williams as the 2016 Sportsperson of the Year, her critics' attempts to caricature her stature were rendered hopeless.  Serena Williams has kept our attention an stayed in the limelight for one reason-- she is a phenomenal athlete.


In July of 2015 the goddess of the court, 33,won her 6th Wimbledon title, her fourth consecutive grand slam win! Some reporters have attempted to minimize or define Serena Williams' status as a royal champion simply because she lost a grand slam. They are as wrong .  The 43rd-ranked Italian, Roberta Vinci, won 2-6, 6-4, 6-4 in the U.S. Open semifinals.  The loss was not tragic or career-defining, althouhg it may have been ego-deflating.  Ms. Williams will get over it as she squints from the shine of the myriad other trophies she has won. One Grand Slam loss does not make a winner a loser.  Her critics know this of course, but incessantly try to wane her shine.

A USA Today writer's damning analysis in the article "How Serena Williams Blew Her Shot At Tennis Immortality" suggests that the No.1 ranked player lost because she cracked under pressure and got in her own way. "Serena’s loss was the culmination of nine months of building pressure that finally reared its paralyzing head," it read.  

Honest historians will aptly record one story about Williams some day -- that she is/was one of the greatest tennis players/athletes of the ages.  May this report stand on the record for accuracy, honesty and truth.  

Despite losing to relatively unknown Vinci and not achieving the history making Grand Slam bid she was aiming for, the Compton, CA native walked away a champion with an ego bruise that will quickly heal.  Having won her first Grand slam at the age of 17, followed by 20 more over her stellar career Williams is a heroine of the courts.

Any other account of who she is as a professional tennis player would be inadequate, inaccurate and outright unfair. But unfairness and insult off the court surround her name unfortunately as magazine such as  Business and finance publiction Forbes sent out a Tweet in the middle of the Open, held at the Arthur Ashe Stadium in New York of a devaluing Williams' as an off-court entity.  Forbes compared her to lower seeded player, third ranked Maria Sharapova who happens to unjustly command more endorsements than Williams.  What Forbes could have focused on the fact Williams is a boss off the court as the owner of her own clothing line that is sold on HSN.

Her head was not in the game? Paralyzing? His opinion shows that someone is always trying to decrease William's dominance, her value. If they run out of ways to belittle her performance, they attack her body or appearance.  Writers have masculinized her physique and force, unable to describe her supersonic swings without offensive language. Yet, no one compared the victor to a man for defeating the so called mansculine Williams.  It's time that Serena's critics face two facts: 1) Serena Williams is already established as champion immortal and 2) She is all woman with both muscle and curves.

Williams  has already made her mark  in the sport of tennis and  proven in January with her 21st Grand Slam win in deafeting her sister Venus, she will continue to do so.  As every mortal human tend to do, Williams had an off day and was unable to regain control of the court. This flub changes nothing for her, but changes everything for her opponent. 

Meanwhile, Williams has secured her rank among tenns greats -- Steffi Graf, Billie Jean King, Martina Navratilova -- as one of the greatest of all times.

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Fair Trade Services and Tyscot Music Partner With Anthony Brown's Key Of A Music

Seated - Anthony Brown (President, Key Of A Music)
Standing (left to right) - Leighton Singleton (VP Sale & Operations, GoDigiPath) - Mark Nicholas (VP, Fair Trade Publishing) - Bryant Scott (President, Tyscot Music Film & Entertainment) - Jeff Moseley (Founder / President, Fair Trade Services) - Dan Michaels (SVP Marketing & Promotions, Fair Trade Services)

Nashville, TN  —  Fair Trade Services announces a licensing partnership with Key Of A Music and Tyscot Music for the new Anthony Brown & group therAPy album. The first radio single from the upcoming release will be serviced to radio later this month and the album is scheduled for a late second quarter 2017 release; to be jointly marketed by FTS, Tyscot, Key of A, and Columbia Records.

"At FAIR TRADE, we continually try to align ourselves with the brightest people in the business.  Bryant Scott and Dr. Leonard Scott have identified and broken some of the most successful artists in Gospel. Anthony Brown is one of Gospel music’s brightest stars of any genre and we are anxious to link arms on his new release,” says Jeff Moseley, Founder and President of Fair Trade Services, LLC.

Bryant Scott states: "We have developed a great relationship with Key Of A Music and Anthony Brown, and we look forward to continuing the explosive growth of their brand. We are excited to expand our partnership with Key Of A Music to include Fair Trade Services. Fair Trade has created an environment that encourages partnerships while giving entrepreneurs the resources and freedom to grow and the results speak for themselves. This unique partnership will help make Tyscot Music and Key Of A Music a preeminent destination for great artists."

"I am so excited to continue my partnership with Tyscot in conjunction with Fairtrade. I have great respect for the legacy that Tyscot has laid in gospel music and grateful to be a part of that legacy," said Anthony Brown.  “With my new partnership with Jeff Mosley and the great folks at Fairtrade, we are positioned to take the message of the gospel to a new place"

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Bri's "My Everything" Debuts on Centric TV's "Lifted" This Sunday


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Wednesday, February 8, 2017

First date mistakes to avoid

buzzz worthy. . .


First dates require a lot of attention — are you making a good first impression, how are you coming across, how are they coming across, and more? Unfortunately it doesn’t take much to take a good first date and have it go bad. The good news is most common first date mistakes are quite avoidable once you know what they are. Below Justin Lavelle of PeopleLooker shares his top first date mistakes:

  • First Impressions. Let’s face it, first impressions are everything. Bad breath, uncombed hair and stained clothing don’t usually go over well on a first date. Dress to impress, meaning look like you care about yourself and have respect for the date. Don't look like you just came from your yoga workout or spin class. A first date is also not the time to experiment with a new, edgy trend. It’s more important to feel comfortable which means wearing clothes that suit your personal style and make you feel good about yourself. ​​

  • Always Choose a Public Place for a First Date. Keep it relatively low stakes like a coffee meeting as opposed to an expensive dinner or a trip to a museum. Ensure you have your own transportation to and from the date and make sure at least one friend knows where you will be. 
     
  • Discussing The Future. This might possibly be the worst offense of any first date. Even thou you think that this is “the one” these types of conversations need to be saved for a more serious relationship. There's being honest about your feelings, and then there's being a little too aggressive.
     
  • Who Pays The Bill? I believe that the person who initiates the date should pay the bill. If this happens to be the male, he should take care of it right away before his date starts to feel uncomfortable. That being said, even if he insists on paying, offering to split the check is a really polite gesture and something he'll appreciate.
     
  • Mentioning An Ex. This is a no-no on a first date. Mentioning a past love can only lead to an uncomfortable situation for everyone involved. Just don’t do it.
     
  • Keep Your Eyes on Your Date. This might seem like common sense to many people, but while you’re on a date in a place with lots of people, resist the urge to look around. One of the biggest first-date turnoffs is when the other party is checking others out.
     
  • Don’t Be Late. It’s a bad first impression and leaves the other person annoyed. If running late is unavoidable, send a text or call the person and let them know what’s going on. When you arrive, apologize.
     
  • Use Your Manners. Don’t forget your manners at home on your first date. Nothing says “I’m entitled and obnoxiousness” more than bad manners. If the restaurant or service is unacceptable, discuss it with your date but best not to act out or say something on a first date. As well, mind your own personal manners and limit your drinks to one or two.
     
  • Keep the Conversation Flowing. It’s important to ask questions — it shows you’re interested in learning more about the person and conveys engagement. If you do not ask your date questions, they will assume you’re not interested in them and will promptly lose interest in you. Avoid yes or no questions and try open-ended questions, consider questions and topics to discuss ahead of time and don’t dominate the conversation. 
     
  • Stay Focused on Your Date. Resist the urge to check your phone or watch during the date. It makes you come across as distracted and uninterested in the person. If you must check your phone, excuse yourself to the restroom and do it there.

  • Avoid the Temptation to bring a First Date Home. Regardless of how well it is going--let the excitement build and avoid any regrets the next morning. ​On that same note, the worst place for a first date is either you or your date's home. SOURCE: Justin Lavelle
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