Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Ariana Miyamoto - Not Japanese Enough

Instead of celebrating her crown, Ariana Miyamoto is already finding the need to defend it.  
Japan's newest Miss Universe contestant broke barriers when she was recent chosen to represent her country. But because the 20-year-old is the daughter of a Japanese woman and a black man from America, some are questioning whether she really is Japanese enough to hold the title.
According to Japanese websites, comments on Twitter ranged from, "Is it okay to select a hafu to represent Japan?" to "Because this is Miss Universe Japan, don't you think hafu are a no-no." Hafu is a Japanese term used to refer to someone who is biracial. 
In an interview with press, Miyamoto insisted that while she doesn't "look Japanese" on the outside, on the inside, there are many Japanese things about her.
In addition to being born and raised Nagasaki, the young adult also is a Japanese citizen who can speak the language fluently.
While some critics have been vocal about their hopes of having another contestant take her spot, others have shown their support for the newly crowned beauty queen.
On GirlsChannel, a popular site that allows readers to vote on comments, some posts suggest residents were satisfied with the choice simply because she was a citizen who loves her country. "Even if you are hafu, if you have Japanese citizenship, then you're Japanese," one commenter shared.
While waiting for the Miss Universe completion to be held next January, Miyamoto is just trying to keep her eyes on the prize and remain focused on representing her country in the best way possible. 
"The world competition is going to be tough," she told Rocket News 24. "But I'll believe in myself and continue doing my best."

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Elizabeth Bessie Coleman

Bessie Coleman (1892 -1926) 

Bessie ColemanBessie Coleman, the first African American female pilot, grew up in a cruel world of poverty and discrimination. The year after her birth in Atlanta, Texas, an African American man was tortured and then burned to death in nearby Paris for allegedly raping a five-year-old girl. The incident was not unusual; lynchings were endemic throughout the South. African Americans were essentially barred from voting by literacy tests. They couldn't ride in railway cars with white people, or use a wide range of public facilities set aside for whites. When young Bessie first went to school at the age of six, it was to a one-room wooden shack, a four-mile walk from her home. Often there wasn't paper to write on or pencils to write with. 

When Coleman turned 23 she headed to Chicago to live with two of her older brothers, hoping to make something of herself. But the Windy City offered little more to an African American woman than did Texas. When Coleman decided she wanted to learn to fly, the double stigma of her race and gender meant that she would have to travel to France to realize her dreams.

It was soldiers returning from World War I with wild tales of flying exploits who first interested Coleman in aviation. She was also spurred on by her brother, who taunted her with claims that French women were superior to African American women because they could fly. In fact, very few American women of any race had pilot's licenses in 1918. Those who did were predominantly white and wealthy. Every flying school that Coleman approached refused to admit her because she was both black and a woman. On the advice of Robert Abbott, the owner of the "Chicago Defender" and one of the first African American millionaires, Coleman decided to learn to fly in France. 

Coleman learned French at a Berlitz school in the Chicago loop, withdrew the savings she had accumulated from her work as a manicurist and the manager of a chili parlor, and with the additional financial support of Abbott and another African American entrepreneur, she set off for Paris from New York on November 20, 1920. It took Coleman seven months to learn how to fly. The only non-Caucasian student in her class, she was taught in a 27-foot biplane that was known to fail frequently, sometimes in the air. During her training Coleman witnessed a fellow student die in a plane crash, which she described as a "terrible shock" to her nerves. But the accident didn't deter her: In June 1921, the Fédération Aéronautique Internationale awarded her an international pilot's license. 

When Coleman returned to the U.S. in September 1921, scores of reporters turned out to meet her. The "Air Service News" noted that Coleman had become "a full-fledged aviatrix, the first of her race." She was invited as a guest of honor to attend the all-black musical "Shuffle Along." The entire audience, including the several hundred whites in the orchestra seats, rose to give the first African American female pilot a standing ovation.

Over the next five years Coleman performed at countless air shows. The first took place on September 3, 1922, in Garden City, Long Island. The "Chicago Defender" publicized the event saying the "wonderful little woman" Bessie Coleman would do "heart thrilling stunts." According to a reporter from Kansas, as many as 3,000 people, including local dignitaries, attended the event. Over the following years, Coleman used her position of prominence to encourage other African Americans to fly. She also made a point of refusing to perform at locations that wouldn't admit members of her race.

Coleman took her tragic last flight on April 30, 1926, in Jacksonville, Florida. Together with a young Texan mechanic called William Wills, Coleman was preparing for an air show that was to have taken place the following day. At 3,500 feet with Wills at the controls, an unsecured wrench somehow got caught in the control gears and the plane unexpectedly plummeted toward earth. Coleman, who wasn't wearing a seat-belt, fell to her death. 

About 10,000 mourners paid their last respects to the first African American woman aviator, filing past her coffin in Chicago South's Side. Her funeral was attended by several prominent African Americans and it was presided over by Ida B. Wells, an outspoken advocate of equal rights. But despite the massive turnout and the tributes paid to Coleman during the service, several black reporters believed that the scope of Coleman's accomplishments had never truly been recognized during her lifetime. An editorial in the "Dallas Express" stated, "There is reason to believe that the general public did not completely sense the size of her contribution to the achievements of the race as such." 

Coleman has not been forgotten in the decades since her death. For a number of years starting in 1931, black pilots from Chicago instituted an annual fly over of her grave. In 1977 a group of African American women pilots established the Bessie Coleman Aviators Club. And in 1992 a Chicago City council resolution requested that the U.S. Postal Service issue a Bessie Coleman stamp. The resolution noted that "Bessie Coleman continues to inspire untold thousands even millions of young persons with her sense of adventure, her positive attitude, and her determination to succeed." 

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Indie Music Reviewer Magazine

Home   |   About   |   Advertise   |   Write for IMR   |   Artists   |   Local Music   |   The Magazine   |   Contact 

Dear fellow indie music-lovers,

2015 is turning out to be a bright and wonderful year for the music industry, and with that comes Indie Music Reviewer’s full-fledged return. With the return of regular content and releases, we are proud to announce our partnership with Indiekrapht—the perfect blend of passion for the indie music scene and promotion of festivals & large-scale platforms for musicians across the globe.

Indiekrapht - Discover More


What is Indiekrapht?
In August, 2011, Nate Kieser launched the website IndieMusicReviewer with Victor Alfieri as Senior Editor and Head Writer. This site focused entirely on independent and small-labeled musicians, providing album and live show reviews, interviews and videos. In one year, they partnered with ReverbNation, created features like “Women of Indie” and “Indie Acoustic,” held the first IMR Music Festival in Atlanta, and their Facebook followers grew to over 14,000.
The site took a hiatus, and Alfieri started the website Wordkrapht in November, 2012 to continue the work that had already begun. He and his staff continued their relationship with ReverbNation, developed their own feature, “FeminINDIE,” and have covered over 1,000 artists in the two years since the site’s launch.
The dynamic duo of Kieser and Alfieri has come back together to create IndieKrapht. Kieser is the musician, video/photo man & dreamer. Alfieri is the groupie, word man & grounding influence.  They are yin and yang, sweet & sour, their strengths fitting perfectly together to create a powerful team.
IndieKrapht will keep on in the tradition of what these two men love best – finding and promoting the amazing independent musicians of any style of music from all four corners of the globe. IndieKrapht will sponsor events, create festivals and provide a platform for independent musicians all around the world.
Our first event to be sponsored by Indiekrapht will be on 5/15/2015 at The Music Room in Greenville, SC.  Please join us to celebrate the birth & launch of Indiekrapht with DAMSGrown Up Avenger StuffJoie., and Signs Of Iris at The Radio Room: WPBR.
Please connect & email us at info@indiekrapht.com. Tell us your story and let’s discover more together.

Additionally, we have several new options for artists and promoters to reach out to their fans through IMR Magazine. We are currently offering an ad plan of “$30 for 30 Days” of website advertising to reach out to 45,000+ viewers on the website each month.
Want an ad in our magazine and on the website?
Perfect—for a limited time we have our Publicist’s Special which can be seen here.

To unsubscribe from this magazine, please send a blank email to:
or email us at 
and we will immediately remove you from our list. 

 IndieMusicReviewer.com  Magazine
Indie Music Reviews – CDs, DVDs, Performances, & MP3 albums.

Questions? Comments? 
Send them to: 

Too many newsletters? You can unsubscribe.

Saturday, March 7, 2015

former Alabama state trooper has pleaded guilty to killing a black civil rights worker 45 years ago

A white former Alabama state trooper has pleaded guilty to killing a black civil rights worker 45 years ago at the height of the civil rights movement. Seventy-seven-year-old James Bonard Fowler was sentenced to six months in prison for the 1965 shooting of 26-year-old Jimmie Lee Jackson during a melee in a restaurant in Marion, Alabama. Democracy Now! speaks to John Fleming, the reporter to whom Fowler first confessed, and Democratic Congress member John Lewis of Georgia, a leading figure of the civil rights movement.

Watch Part 2: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kkRqF5...

Obama condemnes the Missouri city of Ferguson

(Identifies police officers who resigned)

By Carey Gillam and Julia Edwards

March 6 (Reuters) - President Barack Obama condemned the Missouri city of Ferguson on Friday for "oppressive and abusive" actions against African-Americans that were laid bare in a U.S. Justice Department report accusing police and court officials of racial bias.

The president's comments came as U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder said on Friday dismantling the city's police department was a possibility.

"We are prepared to use all the power that we have... to ensure that the situation changes there," Holder said. "That means everything from working with them to coming up with an entirely new structure."

Ferguson Mayor James Knowles said three city workers who demonstrated "egregious racial bias" are no longer employed by the city, and said Ferguson officials are pursuing other reforms to try to reach a settlement with the Justice Department.

City spokesman Jeff Small said police officers Rick Henke and William Mudd resigned on Thursday and Ferguson's top court clerk, Mary Ann Twitty, was fired after the release of the Justice Department report on Wednesday.

The Justice Department said it found that the mostly white police force routinely targeted African-Americans for arrests and ticketing, in part to raise revenue for the city through fines and fees. It found a pattern of officers using excessive force and illegally arresting people without cause, deploying attack dogs and tasers on unarmed people "unreasonably."

"What we saw was that the Ferguson Police Department in conjunction with the municipality saw traffic stops, arrests, tickets as a revenue generator, as opposed to serving the community, and that it systematically was biased against African-Americans in that city who were stopped, harassed, mistreated, abused, called names, fined," Obama said at a town hall-style meeting in South Carolina.

The federal investigation started after a white Ferguson police officer shot and killed an unarmed black teenager on Aug. 9, triggering nationwide protests and illuminating long-held complaints in Ferguson and elsewhere about police treatment of minorities.

The Justice Department said it did not find grounds to prosecute police officer Darren Wilson for killing 18-year-old Michael Brown, but it did find racially disparate practices rampant through the police force.

Obama said on Friday he fully supported the decision not to charge Wilson.

"That was the decision that was made, and I have complete confidence and stand fully behind the decision that was made by the Justice Department on that issue," he said.

The city and the Justice Department are attempting to negotiate reforms to address the problems, and Knowles said the city has hired a consultant to work with the police.

Knowles said city leaders plan to meet with Justice officials in two weeks to review reform strategies, and try to agree on a settlement.

Relations between the city and the Justice Department have been tense during the federal probe, and city officials have bristled at some of the report's allegations.

"There are a lot of things in that report that are very troubling and need to be addressed, but there are also things that are an overreach," Knowles said.

"Our hope is those negotiations lead to mutual satisfaction. But if we cannot come to terms ... we are not going to settle."

Knowles would not comment on whether Police Chief Tom Jackson would be asked to step down. Several community and civil rights leaders, as well as some lawmakers, have sought Jackson's ouster for months.

"We're looking at where the breakdown was and then we'll make changes accordingly," Knowles said. (Reporting by Carey Gillam in Kansas City and Julia Edwards in Columbia, South Carolina; Additional reporting by Doina Chiacu in Washington; Editing by Lisa Shumaker)

Friday, March 6, 2015

Guitar Legend Merrell Fankhauser Releases Critically Acclaimed Autobiography “Calling From A Star”

Guitar Legend Merrell Fankhauser Releases Critically Acclaimed Autobiography “Calling From A Star”


Music Industry News Network 


Arroyo Grande, CA - Merrell Fankhauser has led one of the most diverse and interesting careers in music. He was born in Louisville, Kentucky, and moved to California when he was 13 years old. Merrell went on to become one of the innovators of surf music and psychedelic folk rock. His travels from Hollywood to his 15-year jungle experience on the island of Maui have been documented in numerous music books and magazines in the United States and Europe. Merrell has gained legendary international status throughout the field of rock music; his credits include over 400 songs published and released. He is a 2011 Grammy nominee and multi-talented singer/songwriter and unique guitar player whose sound has delighted listeners for over 50 years. This extraordinary autobiography tells a unique story of one of the founding fathers of surf rock, who went on to play in a succession of progressive and psychedelic bands and to meet some of the greatest names in the business, including Captain Beefheart, John Lennon, The Beach Boys, Jan and Dean, Willie Nelson… and there is even a run in with the notorious Manson family.

“I started the book in 1990 after years of friends and fans telling me I've had such an adventurous life that most Rock Stars don't have.. Playing with so many music icons, moving to Maui searching for the Lost Continent of MU, and now over 400 songs published...! I kept trying to finish the book but because of my live playing schedule, writing, recording and doing a regular TV show, California Music 1990 - 1995, Tiki Lounge 2001 - to now it took years to finish!” - Merrell Fankhauser

Merrell Fankhauser is considered one of the main innovators of surf music and psychedelic folk rock, and is widely known as the leader of the instrumental surf group The Impacts who had the international hit “Wipeout”. Merrell Fankhauser has presented a number of television programs over the years including 'California Music', 'Route 66 TV Live', and in 2001 he began hosting a music show called 'Tiki Lounge' that airs on the California Central Coast, Southern California, Hawaii and parts of the East Coast.

Official website:

For more information:


Press inquiries: Glass Onyon PR, PH: 828-350-8158, glassonyonpr@gmail.com

Elderly Man’s Home Egged Almost Every Day By Vandals, Police Offer $1,000 Reward

Elderly Man’s Home Egged Almost Every Day By Vandals, Police Offer $1,000 Reward

Police Offer Reward In House Egging Case

Almost every day, Albert Clemens Sr. and his son and daughter are awakened by the sound of eggs hitting his home in Euclid, Ohio. The 85-year-old man has lived in Euclid for nearly 60 years, and until last year, it was a pleasant existence. However, within the past year, unknown vandals have made Albert the target of a ceaseless and cruel campaign.
Albert Clemens says that his house is egged almost daily. He’s not talking about maybe a few eggs here or there; according to the elderly man, at least one individual is hitting his home with dozens of eggs at an almost daily rate.

Cleveland.com reports that the attacks typically occur at night and usually last for 10 minutes. The vandals hit the home usually once or twice almost every night. The police believe that rather than approach the green two-story house, the eggs are somehow launched from nearly two blocks away.
“The accuracy is phenomenal. Because almost every time when it’s nice weather and they launch five or six of these at a time, they almost invariably hit the front door.”
Even though it’s most common that eggs are projected at the home, Clemens said that his house has been hit with everything from apples to canned fruit. Initially, the elderly man tried to clean up the mess left by vandals, but he’s since given up.
Even though the matter is now in the hands of police, there doesn’t seem to be much law enforcement can do. There have been stakeouts, and the neighborhood has been searched for clues and suspects. All effort up to this point have been futile. Local officials are hoping that a $1,000 reward will inspire at least one person to come forward.
According to Euclid Police Lt. Mitch Houser, the crime seems to be very personal. No other homes in the area have been targeted, and the individual(s) seem dedicated to hitting this home practically every night without fail.
“Somebody is deeply, deeply angry at somebody in that household for some reason.”
One theory is the fact that Clemens regularly calls the police about criminal activity, especially those activities which relate to drugs. Whoever the persons are, they do not seem to be deterred from their “mission” by the presence of police. One officer was on the scene when a “barrage of eggs” was fired at the house. He was struck in the foot.
Even as the harassment continues, Albert Clemens said he refuses to leave the beloved home he once shared with his wife, who is now deceased.
“I like the neighborhood. I like the city of Euclid. I would live and die in this house… but it’s been kind of a nightmare.”
Anyone with information about the incident is encouraged to contact the Euclid Police Department.

Monday, March 2, 2015

Neanderthals ate barbecued pigeon

Neanderthals ate barbecued pigeon
Ian Sample, science editor

Charred bones suggest our ancient relatives cooked the ancestors of feral pigeons on the embers of their fires

An exhibit shows the life of a neanderthal family in the Neanderthal Museum in Krapina, Croatia
 Neanderthals living near the sea in Gibraltar are known to have eaten seals, dolphins, shellfish – and now pigeon. Photograph: Nikola Solic/Reuters

Neanderthals snacked on pigeons that they had toasted on open fires, according to researchers, adding to the menu of foods known to be eaten by our closest ancient relatives.

Leftovers of Neanderthal feasts were discovered in sediments that built up over millennia in the huge Gorham's Cave on the east face of Gibraltar, where generations of Neanderthals sheltered for nearly 100,000 years.

Workers at the site unearthed a haul of pigeon bones and found that some bore tooth marks, cuts from stone tools or signs of charring, perhaps created when the meat was left to cook on the glowing embers of a fire.

Most of the tell-tale marks were on pigeon wing and leg bones where much of the meat was to be had. Some of the thicker bones had tiny puncture marks from smaller, needle-like bones, which can happen when chicken wings are twisted apart to get at the meat.

The findings add to a growing body of evidence that Neanderthals had more on their minds at dinner time than large mammals. Those living in the caves of Gibraltar left behind butchered bones from seals and dolphins, and even had shucks for prising open shellfish.

A rock dove (pigeon) bone with cut marks made by Neanderthals
 A rock dove bone with cut marks found in Gorham’s Cave. Photograph: Ruth Blasco et al/Scientific Reports
"The picture that is emerging is that Neanderthals had a diverse larder outside their cave window and they were exploiting all these things," said Clive Finlayson, director of the Gibraltar Museum, who took part in the latest study. In June, researchers at MIT reported evidence from 50,000-year-old Neanderthal poo that those living in southern Spain ate plants too.

Finlayson's team decided to check whether birds were on the menu after they unearthed piles of bird bones at Gorham's Cave, where excavations have been going on for the past 25 years. At the latest count, 150 ancient bird species had been identified from bones found in the cave sediments.

Today, the cave sits squarely on the shore, beneath a spectacular cliff face that rises up more than 400 metres. But when Neanderthals occupied the cave, sea levels were lower and the sea may have been several kilometres away. From the entrance, the occupants would have looked out on a sandy plain broken up by wetlands and open areas where stone pine and juniper grew.

The majority of bird bones at Gorham's Cave belong to rock doves, the wild ancestors of modern feral pigeons. For the latest study, the researchers looked at 1,724 rock dove bones found in sediments ranging from 67,000 to 28,000 years old.

Close examination of the bones found cut marks on 28 pigeon bones and tooth marks on 15 that dated from Neanderthal times. Other bones had burn marks. The more recent remains had similar marks made by modern humans who lived in the cave when the Neanderthals died out. While only a small portion of the bones had human marks, Finlayson said even those were unexpected.

"When you consider that pigeons are quite small, it is amazing that any cut marks should appear," he said. Neanderthals could have pulled pigeons apart, unlike larger animals, without needing to cut them up first. "Maybe they are defleshing the animal and the stone knife slips and leaves a mark," he added.

Burn marks left some of the bones unevenly discoloured, which may have happened when wing or leg bones were cooked. "We think they are putting them on embers in the fire. If you have a bone with lots of muscle on one side, the bone more exposed to the fire becomes more cremated," said Finlayson.

The researchers say the oldest bones they studied cannot have been damaged by modern humans. "There is absolutely no doubt that this was the Neanderthals. And they could not have learned this from modern humans because there weren't any modern humans in Europe 67,000 years ago. They must have come up with this on their own," Finlayson said. A report on the work entitled "The earliest pigeon fanciers" appears in Nature Scientific Reports.

What the scientists cannot explain is how they managed to bag so many birds. Rock doves nest on cliff faces and the Neanderthals may have climbed up and raided the birds' nests. But Finlayson is doubtful of that: there are simply too many bones, he said.

"I'm speculating, but I think they must have had snares or nets or some other trapping techniques that were made from perishable materials such as grasses and fibres," he said. "But it would be very difficult to find traces of those."

Researchers now plan to examine thousands of other bones unearthed at the site to see if Neanderthals were partial to other kinds of feathered food.