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Archive for the ‘Rapp Artist’ Category

Birthdays Of Famous African Americans For November 09


1. Benjamin Banneker, self-educated scientist, astronomer, inventor, writer, and antislavery publicist. He built a striking clock entirely from wood, published a Farmers’ Almanac for 10 years,  completed the design and layout of Washington, D.C., and actively campaigned against slavery. He was one of the first African Americans to gain distinction in science.

2. Dorothy Dandridge, actress and popular singer, and was the first African-American to be nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actress.   She performed as a vocalist in venues such as the Nathan Featherston and the Apollo Theater.

After several minor bit parts in films, Dandridge landed her first noted film role in Tarzan’s Peril (starring Lex Barker), in 1951. Dandridge won her first starring role in 1953, playing a teacher in a low-budget film with a nearly all-black cast, Bright Road, released by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer.

She was nominated in 1954  for an Academy Award for Best Actress and a BAFTA Award for Best Actress in a Leading Role for Carmen Jones, and in 1959 she was nominated for a Golden Globe Award for Best Actress in a Motion Picture Musical or Comedy for Porgy and Bess. In 1999, she was the subject of the HBO biopic Introducing Dorothy Dandridge, starring Halle Berry as Dandridge. She has been recognized on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

3. Dion James, Major League Baseball Player, played as left and center fielder for an eleven-year career from 1983–1985, 1987–1990, 1992–1993, 1995-1996. James starred at C.K. McClatchy High School in Sacramento, California before being selected by the Milwaukee Brewers in the first round (25th overall) in the 1980 Amateur Entry Draft. He played for the Brewers, Cleveland Indians and New York Yankees all of the American League and the Atlanta Braves of the National League.   James was the Brewers’ Rookie of the Year in 1984

4. Sandra Denton, known as Pepa, Is a Rapp and hip hop artist, actress, and a member of the female rap trio Salt-N-Pepa.

5. Mark Durrell Andrews known by his stage name Sisqó, is an  R&B singer and actor. He is best known as the lead singer of R&B group Dru Hill, and also for “Thong Song”, a song from his first solo LP, Unleash the Dragon, that became an international hit.

Birthdays Of Famous African Americans For November 04


 Jean Baptiste Point Du Sable1

1.  Jean Baptiste Point Du Sable, Explorer, As a result of his explorations and trading, he is credited with founding the early settlement which eventually became the city of Chicago.

Harry Elston

2. Harry Elston, R&B (Friends Of Distinction),  Originally, Elston came up with the name Distinctive Friends, but Barbara Jean Love decided to reverse the words. In 1968, Hall of Fame football player Jim Brown met the group and introduced them to the staff at RCA Records. In 1969, Friends of Distinction released their first album entitled Grazin’ on RCA Records. The album included the songs “Grazing in the Grass”, of which Elston wrote and sang lead on, and “Going in Circles.” Grazin’ peaked at number five on the R&B charts.

During the 1960s, Elston was also a prominent figure in the urban night life. Alongside, Jim Brown and John Daniels, Elston was instrumental in opening the Mavericks Flat, a well-known L.A. night club that is often referred to as the Apollo Theater of the west coast. In addition, Elston was instrumental in the formation of the N.I.E.U. (Negro Industrial and Economic Union). In 1992, Elston was co-writer of “It’s Over,” a single for Friends of Distinction.

Sean Combs

3. Sean John Combs, also known by his stage names Diddy and P. Diddy, is an American rapper, singer, record producer, actor, and entrepreneur. He has won three Grammy Awards and two MTV Video Music Awards, and his clothing line earned a Council of Fashion Designers of America award. He was originally known as Puff Daddy and then as P. Diddy (Puff and Puffy being often used as a nickname, but never as recording names). In August 2005, he changed his stage name to simply “Diddy”, but continues to use the name P. Diddy in England as the result of a lawsuit. He formed and recorded with the group “Diddy – Dirty Money”.

George Clayton Huff

4. George Clayton Huff, Jr., R&B/Gospel Artist  He placed first among male contestants and overall fifth-place finalist on the third season of the reality/talent-search television series American Idol.

Birthdays Of Famous African Americans For November 02


Willie Dean McGee

1. Willie Dean McGee, is a retired professional baseball player who won two batting titles and was named Major League Baseball’s 1985 National League MVP. McGee primarily played center and right field, winning three Gold Glove Awards for defensive excellence. McGee spent the majority of his 18-year career playing for the St. Louis Cardinals, helping the Cardinals win the 1982 World Series with his outstanding performance in Game 3 of that series. A four-time All-Star, McGee accumulated 2,254 hits during his career.

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2. Orlando Luis Merced Villanueva, is a former Major League Baseball first Baseman and outfielder. He played all or part of thirteen seasons in the majors for the Pittsburgh Pirates (1990–1996), Toronto Blue Jays (1997),Minnesota Twins (1998), Boston Red Sox (1998), Chicago Cubs (1998), Montreal Expos(1999), and Houston Astros (2001–2003). He also played one season for the Orix BlueWave(2000) in Japan.

 Nelly

3. Cornell Iral Haynes, Jr., better known by his stage name Nelly, is a Grammy Award winning Rapp Artist, actor and entrepreneur. He has performed with the rap group St. Lunatics since 1993 and signed to Universal Records in 1999. Under Universal, Nelly began his solo career in 2000 with his debut album Country Grammar, the title track of which was a top ten hit. The album debuted at number three on the Billboard 200 and went on to peak at number one. Country Grammar is Nelly’s best-selling album to date, selling over 8.4 million copies in the United States.  His following album, Nellyville, produced the number-one hits “Hot in Herre” and “Dilemma” featuring Kelly Rowland. Other singles included “Work It” featuring Justin Timberlake, “Air Force Ones” featuring Murphy Lee and the St. Lunatics, “Pimp Juice” and “#1”.

Birthdays Of Famous African Americans For October 29


Melba Moore

1. Melba Moore, disco, R&B singer and actress.

Jesse Barfield

2. Jesse Barfield, is a former Major League Baseball right fielder who played for the Toronto Blue Jays (1981–89) and New York Yankees (1989–92). He batted and threw right-handed. He lived in Tenafly, a suburb of New York City.

 Randy Jackson

3. Randy Jackson, singer and musician, a member of The Jacksons. Nicknamed “Little Randy”, he is the youngest of the Jackson brothers, and the second youngest of the nine Jackson whole siblings, after sister Janet.

Randy was only three when the Jackson 5 was formed and therefore was not an original member. While his brothers toured, he honed his skills as a musician, mastering piano.

 Oscar Jackson, Jr

4. Oscar Jackson, Jr., better known by his stage name Paris is an American Rapp artist from San Francisco, California, known for his highly charged political and socially conscious lyrics.

Gabrielle Union

5. Gabrielle Union, actress and former model. Among her notable roles is as the cheerleader  in the film Bring it On, opposite Will Smith and Martin Lawrence in the blockbuster film Bad Boys II and played a  doctor in the CBS drama series City of Angels. She starred with LL Cool J in Deliver Us from Eva in 2003, and opposite Cedric the Entertainer in The Honey Mooners. 

 Tracee Ellis Ross

6. Tracee Ellis Ross, Actress (Daughter of Famed Motown R&B artist Diana Ross), best known for her lead role as Joan Clayton on the UPN/CW series, Girlfriends. She is currently starring as Dr. Carla Reed on the new BET sitcom Reed Between the Lines.

Birthdays Of Famous African Americans For October 20


1. Enolia P. McMillan, Teacher, she becomes the first woman president of the NAACP, serving the organization from 1984 to 1990.

2. Calvin Cordozar Broadus, Jr., better known by his stage name Snoop Dogg, is an  Rapp Artist, record producer, actor, entrepreneur. Snoop is best known as a rapper in the West Coast hip hop scene, and for being one of Dr. Dre’s most notable protégés.

Snoop’s debut album Doggystyle, was released in 1993 under Death Row Records making a debut at No.1 on both the Billboard Hot 100 and R&B charts. Selling almost a million copies in the first week of its release, Doggystyle quickly became certified 4x platinum in 1994 and spawned several hit singles, including “What’s My Name” and “Gin & Juice”. In 1994, Snoop released a soundtrack on Death Row Records for the short film Murder Was The Case, starring himself.

3. Jennifer Nicole Freeman, actress, often credited as Jennifer N. Freeman. She was born in Los Angeles, California best known for playing the role of Claire Kyle in the ABC sitcom My Wife and Kids.    She has also made guest appearances on television (such as the shows 7th HeavenSwitchedOne on One, and The OC).  She is a spokesmodel for the Neutrogena skin care products company.

Birthdays Of Famous African Americans For October 13


Edith Spurlock Sampson

1. Edith Spurlock Sampson, was a Lawyer and judge, and the first Black Woman Delegate appointed to the United Nations.  She studied law while working as a social worker in Chicago, taking night courses at John Marshall Law School,

Arna Wendell Bontemps

2. Arnaud Wendell Bontemps, Was a Writer (100 years of Negro Freedom), Poet   and a noted member of the Harlem Renaissance.

Art Tatum

3. Art Tatum, jazz pianist and virtuoso who played with phenomenal facility despite being nearly blind.  Tatum is widely acknowledged as one of the greatest jazz pianists of all time.  He came from a musical family and when younger had some formal training at the Toledo School of Music, however he was largely self-taught.  His teacher there recognized his talents and tried to steer him towards as a career as a classical concert pianist.  Tatum was more interested in the music of Fats Waller, which would be a strong influence on his music.  At 18 he was playing interludes at a local radio station and within a short period of time he had his own show.  In 1932 he was heard by the singer Adelaide Hall who brought him to New York as her accompanist.  One year later he made his first recordings, among which was “Tiger Rag”. This song which features breakneck tempo and rippling left- and right-hand cascades and crashing bass notes had every pianist in the country amazed by his astonishing dexterity.  While in New York he established his reputation in “cutting contests” with other top pianists, which he never lost.  He spent the next few years playing in Cleveland, Chicago, New York and Los Angeles and even England in 1938.  During this time he established himself as a major figure in jazz circles.  In the early 1940s Tatum formed an extremely popular trio with bassist Slam Stewart and guitarist Tiny Grimes.  He spent much of the next decade touring North America.  In 1953 Tatum signed by producer Norman Granz and recorded extensively both as a soloist and in small groups with Benny Carter, soloist and in small groups with Benny Carter, Buddy De Franco, Roy Eldridge, Lionel Hampton, Ben Webster and others.  His incredible talent allowed him to be extremely productive during this time.  Ray Spencer in his biography, noted that Tatum was constantly “refining and honing down after each performance until an ideal version remained needing no further adjustments”.  This allowed him to achieve a remarkable work rate.  For example, his solo sessions for Granz were mostly completed in two days.  That is a total of 69 tracks and all but three of them needed only one take.

Jesse Leroy Brown

4. Jesse Leroy Brown, was the first African-American naval aviator in the United States Navy. Brown enlisted in the Naval Reserve in 1946 and was appointed a Midshipman, at the Ohio State University NROTC the following year. After attending Navy pre-flight school and flight training, he was designated a Naval Aviator in October 1948. Midshipman Brown was then assigned to Fighter Squadron 32. He received his commission as Ensign in April 1949.

Ray Brown Musician

5. Ray Brown, Jazz Bassist, had piano lessons from the age of eight. After noticing how many pianists attended his high school, he thought of taking up the trombone, but was unable to afford one. With a vacancy in the high school jazz orchestra, he took up the upright bass. 

Shirley Caesar

6. Shirley Caesar, Evangelist, Gospel Singer, songwriter and recording artist whose career has spanned six decades. A multi-award winning artist, with eleven Grammy Awards and seven Dove Awards to her credit, she is known as “First Lady of gospel”.

Pharoah Sanders

7. Pharaoh Sanders, is a Grammy Award–winning American jazz saxophonist.  Emerging from John Coltrane’s groups of the mid-60s Sanders is known for his overblowing, harmonic, and multi phonic techniques on the saxophone, as well as his use of “sheets of sound.”

Demond Wilson

8. Demond Wilson,  is an actor, author, and pastor. He is best known for his role opposite Redd Foxx as Fred Sanford’s son, Lamont Sanford, in the 1970s NBC-TV sitcom Sanford and Son.

Reggie Theus

9. Reggie Theus, is an assistant coach for the Minnesota Timberwolves. He is also a retired basketball player and the former head coach for the NBA’s Sacramento Kings.

Jerry Rice

10. Jerry Rice, is a retired football wide receiver. He is generally regarded as the greatest wide receiver of all time and one of the greatest players in National Football League history.  On November 4, 2010, Rice was chosen by NFL Network’s NFL Films production The Top 100: NFL’s Greatest Players as the greatest player in NFL history.

The all-time leader in most major statistical categories for wide receivers and the all-time NFL leader in touchdowns scored with 208, Rice was selected to the Pro Bowl 13 times (1986–1996, 1998, 2002) and named All-Pro 11 times in his 20 NFL seasons. He won three Super Bowl rings playing for the San Francisco 49ers and an AFC Championship with the Oakland Raiders.

Tisha Campbell

11. Tisha Michelle Campbell-Martin, is an actress and singer, known for her starring roles in television series Martin and My Wife and Kids and now is starring in the new television series “The Protector”. Apart from her achievements in television, she also has notable accomplishments in film (including the House Party franchise), theater, and music.

Ashanti

12. Ashanti, Ashanti Shequoiya Douglas, Rapp and R&B recording artist, record producer and actress who rose to fame in the early 2000s and then largely faded from view. Ashanti is most famous for her eponymous debut album, which featured the hit song “Foolish”, and sold over 503,000 copies in its first week of release throughout the U.S. in April 2002. The album set a Soundscan record as the biggest opening week sales for a new female artist.  In the same week, she became the first female performer to simultaneously hold the top two places on the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart with “Foolish”, and “What’s Luv?” (with Fat Joe). Ashanti broke records again by having three top ten songs, “Foolish,” “What’s Luv?” and “Always on Time”, on the Billboard Hot 100 charts in the same week, being the first woman to accomplish this feat. In 2003, the self-titled debut album won Ashanti her first Grammy Award for Best Contemporary R&B album. As of 2011, she has sold more than 30 million albums.

Birthdays Of Famous African American For October 11


1. Roscoe Robinson, Jr., was a four-star general in the United States Army.   He attended St. Louis University for only a year and then transferred to the United States Military Academyat West Point in 1947. Robinson graduated with a degree in military engineering in 1951. After graduating he served in the Korean War in 1952 as a platoon leader and rifle company commander. For his actions he received the Bronze Star. Sent back to the United States a year later he became an instructor in the Airborne Department of the United States Army Infantry School. Robinson then went on to graduate from theCommand and General Staff College at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas in 1963. The following year he received his masters degree from the University of Pittsburgh in international affairs. In 1967 he served as battalion commander in Vietnam. For his achievements there he received the Legion of Merit, the Distinguished Flying Cross, 11 Air Medals, and two Silver Stars.

After Vietnam he served at the National War College for three years as the executive officer to the Chief of Staff. He was promoted to Brigadier General and in 1975 became Commanding General of the United States Army Garrison, Okinawa. He also commanded America’s Guard of Honor, the 82nd Airborne Division, as a Major General at Fort Bragg, North Carolina in 1976 and was renowned for earning the love and respect of his men, his fellow Paratroopers, during his Command – which was noteworthy for, General Robinson was, the first African-American to Command The All-American Division. His final assignment was as U.S. Military Representative to the NATO Military Committee from 1982-1985. After he had completed 34 years of service to the U.S. military he retired in 1985. He was then awarded with the Defense Distinguished Service Medal and two Distinguished Service Medals. After his retirement, he was asked to look over a panel of people who were examining the Korean War performance of some highly criticized army units. He also served on the board of Northwest Airlines.   In April 2000 there was a ceremony and a dedication at West Point for a new auditorium, named “General Roscoe Robinson, Jr. Auditorium” in his honor. The Roscoe Robinson Health Clinic at Womack Army Medical Center at Fort Bragg is also named in his honor.

2. Art Blakey, known later as Abdullah Ibn Buhaina,  Was a  jazz drummer and bandleader.  Along with Kenny Clarke and Max Roach, he was one of the inventors of the modern bebop style of drumming. He is known as a powerful musician and a vital groover; his brand of bluesy, funky hard bop was and continues to be profoundly influential on mainstream jazz. For more than 30 years his band, Art Blakey and the Jazz Messengers included many young musicians who went on to become prominent names in jazz. The band’s legacy is thus not only known for the often exceptionally fine music it produced, but as a proving ground for several generations of jazz musicians;[2] Blakey’s groups are matched only by those ofMiles Davis in this regard.

3. Earle Hyman, stage, television, and film actor. Hyman is known for his recurring role on The Cosby Show as Cliff’s father, Russell Huxtable.

Lester Bowie

4. Lester Bowie, was an American jazz trumpet player, Percussionist, Vocalist and composer.  He was a member of the AACM, and cofounded the Art Ensemble of Chicago.

Curt Ford

5. Curtis Glenn Ford, is a former professional baseball player who played in the Major Leagues from 1985-1990. He played for the St. Louis Cardinals and Philadelphia Phillies. He briefly played for the Saskatoon Smokin’ Guns of the Prairie Baseball League in 1996.  In May 2010, Ford was announced as the new manager of the Springfield Sliders, a wood-bat collegiate baseball team in the Prospect League. The team plays at Lanphier Park in Springfield, Ill.

MC Lyte

6. MC Lyte, Rapp Artists who first gained fame in the late 1980s becoming the first solo female rapper to release a full album with 1988’s critically acclaimed Lyte as a Rock.

Kimberly Aiken

7. Kimberly Aiken, Youngest Miss America 1994.  Aiken was 18 years old when she won the coveted title, and was only the fifth woman of African descent to get the crown. She won Miss Columbia and Miss South Carolina en route to her 1994 Miss America crown.

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