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"CELEBRITY UNDERWORLD" (MIRACLE DRUGS, HARD TO FIND DRUGS & NON-FDA APPROVED DRUGS):
Ray Donovan and Olivia Pope are fictional fixers on TV where they do damage control for Hollywood stars and politicians.
In real life, fixers can find and obtain (hard to find) pharmaceuticals, miracle drugs and non-FDA approved drugs.
Click the above image to read about: Little known treatments and drugs used by celebrities and politicians to maintain their health.
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Future is still bothered by Ciara moving on with Russell Wilson. Did he refer to her or Russell as a ho in the following tweets? Regardless of what he thinks of her, he needs to realize that this is the mother of his child. Didn't he move on with a stable of women? Future's response to the above photos (below).
IN OTHER NEWS:
Kelly Price, one of Whitney Houston’s longtime pals and collaborator on the Grammy-nominated “Heartbreak Hotel,” thinks Nick Gordon is worthy of suspect status in Bobbi Kristina's death.
TMZ reported that Bobbi Kristina's funeral invitations specifically ask for monetary donations to Pat Houston's charity, "The Marion P. Foundation," in lieu of flowers for Bobbi Kristina's funeral. In her Facebook tirade, Leolah (Bobby Brown's sister) claimed Pat's charity was really a cover for a child trafficking ring.
R&B singer Ne-Yo knows how to look out for family by reportedly adding his ex-girlfriend as a co-owner to a $1 million condominium.
Bobby Brown's wife was rushed to hospital after suffering a seizure. The singer's spouse, Alicia Etheridge reportedly became unwell in a hotel room on Saturday evening following the funeral of Bobby's daughter, Bobbi Kristina.
CULINARY! (STEAK/PRIME RIB SALADS)
Prime Rib Salad Recipe:
1 1/2 lb prime rib, cooked and sliced
1 large romaine lettuce head, chopped
2 large roma tomatoes, sliced
4-6 medium radishes, sliced
2 oz kalamata olives, sliced
2 small shallots, sliced
2 Tbsp cilantro, chopped
2 oz shaved parmesan cheese
1/3 c balsamic pomegranate vinegar
2/3 c olive oil, extra virgin
2 goya salad packs (your favorite dry salad dressing)
1-2 Tbsp course black pepper
If you are a pastrami lover, pastrami fries are the way to go!
Just pile a lump of grilled pastrami on top of chili/cheese french fries for a unique and tasteful dish.
When the upscale and very expensive foie gras (goose liver) was banned. Allegedly, several domestic and international (5-star) restaurants broke the law by selling it "off menu" to wealthy patrons.
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3 simple steps to eat lots of carbs and never store them as fat. Lower belly and abdominal fat as well. The following 4 ebooks are free with purchase: (14 carbs cycling desserts, carb cycling dinners, day rapid fat loss-fast start guide and fat loss tricks). 60 Day money back guarantee. Click above images.
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"CELEBRITY SPY NETWORK" (NEW & OLD)
Rihanna enjoys hosting pajama parties on her private jet. The parties usually feature gourmet popcorn and Dom Perignon for snacks, along with tins of caviar.
She also uses her jet to fly to St. Tropez (to relax at her villa) and various NBA games.
Drake and Nicki should be taking note regarding all of the allegations leveled at Baby for ripping Wayne off and allegedly hiring shooters to shoot up Wayne's bus.
If they are smart, the little money they make with Cash Money, should be used to set up slush funds in domestic and offshore accounts.
Allegedly, both are signed to 360 deals and Baby takes a large percentage of all their earnings, including endorsements, publishing royalties and concert pay.
Example: Nicki loves renting mansions and leasing Rolls Royce's and Drake is allegedly leasing a $6 million dollar mansion and drops five to six figures on Rolex watches.
If they don't become more responsible with their money, they will end up broke and forgotten.
Nicki needs to keep in mind: Lil Kim and Foxy Brown have experienced financial problems without a record deal and they are no longer played on the radio.
"UNDERWATER RESTAURANT IN SAN FRANCISCO" (BLACK BILLIONAIRE EXCERPT)
by: Meredith May
UPCOMING CONTEST! (2 DINNER PACKAGES):
If you want to dine like James Bond, call self-made millionaire Forbes Thor Kiddoo.
The sea captain will fetch you from the cotton-candy-eating crowds at Pier 39 and ferry you past barking sea lions to his floating Forbes Island, with palm trees, a waterfall and lighthouse.
Then comes the 007 part.
"Come with me, there are seven rooms hidden under the sandy beaches!" said Kiddoo, waving guests to stairs descending into the sand.
Kiddoo, a former floating-home developer, built his secret hideaway between 1975 and 1980.
It's 100 feet long and 50 feet wide, and weighs 700 tons. It's the only floating island in the world, Kiddoo said.
And though it's smack-dab in the middle of touristville, it's still a bit of a San Francisco secret.
Kiddoo's submerged lair is a 100-seat restaurant, decorated like the inside of an 1810 sailing ship, with a fireplace, bar, a wine cellar where Tony Bennett once crooned, plus a boudoir with a velvety bed that serves as the ladies' powder room.
And there are two tiki banquet rooms above ground.
Warmed by a fireplace, diners feast on filet mignon, mushroom risotto and sea bass while chandeliers sway with the ocean surge beneath them. Fish swim by portholes and Satchmo plays on the sound system.
About 450 people a week dine at Forbes Island, finding out about it mostly by word of mouth, and a past TV spot on "Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous." He sells out every Fourth of July, and rents the entire restaurant for private pirate parties.
For the ultimate James Bond maneuver, after dinner take your date to the top of the 55-step lighthouse, which has a Fresnel lens and provides a panoramic view of the city lights.
Sir Sean Connery allegedly scaled it-when he ate at Forbes Island in March 2009.
**Our concierge division in affiliation with our 'Black Billionaire,' newsletter and our Affluent Report division will pick up the tab for two dinner packages (at Forbes Island) in an upcoming 'Panache Experience' Contest.
Writer Chester Himes (A Rage In Harlem, Cotton Comes To Harlem, Come Back Charleston Blue) was born in Jefferson City, Missouri, on July 29, 1909. He grew up in a middle-class home in Missouri. When Himes was about 12 years old, his father took a teaching job in the Arkansas Delta at Branch Normal College (now University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff), and soon a tragedy took place that would profoundly shape Himes's view of race relations. He had misbehaved and his mother made him sit out a gunpowder demonstration that he and his brother, Joseph Jr., were supposed to conduct during a school assembly. Working alone, Joseph mixed the chemicals; they exploded in his face. Rushed to the nearest hospital, the blinded boy was refused treatment because of Jim Crow laws. "That one moment in my life hurt me as much as all the others put together," Himes wrote in The Quality of Hurt.
"I loved my brother. I had never been separated from him and that moment was shocking, shattering, and terrifying....We pulled into the emergency entrance of a white people's hospital. White clad doctors and attendants appeared. I remember sitting in the back seat with Joe watching the pantomime being enacted in the car's bright lights. A white man was refusing; my father was pleading. Dejectedly my father turned away; he was crying like a baby. My mother was fumbling in her handbag for a handkerchief; I hoped it was for a pistol."
Chester's parents were Joseph Sandy Himes and Estelle Bomar Himes; his father was a peripatetic black college professor of industrial trades and his mother was a teacher at Scotia Seminary prior to marriage; the family eventually settled in Cleveland, Ohio. His parents' marriage was unhappy and eventually ended in divorce.
Himes family left Pine Bluff and relocated to Cleveland Ohio where he attended East High School. While he was a freshman at Ohio State University in Columbus, Ohio, he was expelled for playing a prank. In late 1928 he was arrested and sentenced to jail and hard labor for 20 to 25 years for armed robbery and sent to Ohio Penitentiary. In prison, he wrote short stories and had them published in national magazines. Himes stated that writing in prison and being published was a way to earn respect from guards and fellow inmates, as well as to avoid violence.
In 1934 Himes was transferred to London Prison Farm and in April 1936 he was released on parole into his mother's custody. Following his release he worked at part-time jobs and at the same time continued to write. During this period he came into contact with Langston Hughes, who facilitated Himes's contacts with the world of literature and publishing.
In 1936 Himes married Jean Johnson.
In the 1940s Himes spent time in Los Angeles, working as a screenwriter.
Himes' brief career as a screenwriter for Warner Brothers, terminated when Jack L. Warner heard about him and said "I don't want no niggers on this lot." Himes later wrote in his autobiography:
Up to the age of thirty-one I had been hurt emotionally, spiritually and physically as much as thirty-one years can bear. I had lived in the South, I had fallen down an elevator shaft, I had been kicked out of college, I had served seven and one half years in prison, I had survived the humiliating last five years of Depression in Cleveland; and still I was entire, complete, functional; my mind was sharp, my reflexes were good, and I was not bitter. But under the mental corrosion of race prejudice in Los Angeles I became bitter and saturated with hate.
By the 1950s Himes had decided to settle in France permanently, a country he liked in part due to his popularity in literary circles. In Paris, Himes' was the contemporary of the political cartoonist Oliver Harrington and fellow expatriate writers Richard Wright, James Baldwin, and William Gardner Smith.
It was in Paris in the late 1950s that Chester met his second wife Lesley Himes, née Packard, when she went to interview him. She was a journalist at the Herald Tribune, where she wrote her own fashion column, "Monica". He described her as "Irish-English with blue-gray eyes and very good looking", he also saw her courage and resilience, Chester said to Lesley, "You're the only true color-blind person I've ever met in my life." After he suffered a stroke, in 1959, Lesley quit her job and nursed him back to health. She cared for him for the rest of his life, and worked with him as his informal editor, proofreader, confidante and, as the director, Melvin Van Peebles dubbed her, "his watchdog." After a long engagement, they were married in 1978.
Lesley and Chester faced adversities as a mixed race couple but they prevailed. Theirs was a life lived with an unparallelled passion and great humor. Their circle of political colleagues and creative friends included not only such towering figures as Langston Hughes and Richard Wright; it also included figures such as Malcolm X, Carl Van Vechten, Picasso, Jean Miotte, Ollie Harrington, Nikki Giovanni and Ishmael Reed. Bohemian life in Paris would in turn lead them to the South of France and finally on to Spain, where they lived until Chester's death in 1984 of Parkinsons disease.
by: Clarence Walker
Lee Daniels brother-in-law Henry "Black" Butler (2nd pic) once co-owned Mogul Media Group, a promotion firm and a nightclub in Studio City California. Photos on Butler's website shows him posing with singers Alicia Keys, Christina Aguilera, Brian Mcknight and comedian-actor Jamie Foxx.
Trapped by the DEA in a drug conspiracy that could take Butler out of the game for decades, he rolled over during the Jimmy Rosemond trial, and began squealing like a rat in a cheese factory.
Leah Daniels Butler (Lee Daniels sister-pictured above) works in the movie business and is credited for casting actors for the movie "Precious" is the wife of convicted narcotic felon, hip-hop producer and music promoter Henry "Black" Butler.
Henry Butler, as mentioned earlier in this story, was indicted on federal cocaine charges related to James "Jimmy" Rosemond's drug trafficking empire.
Shortly after her husband's arrest, the DEA and deputies from the Ventura County Sheriff Department conducted surveillance on Butler's home in Thousand Oaks California while federal prosecutor Todd Kaminsky hurriedly secured a warrant to search the Butler's residence.
A few hours passed until finally the offices spotted Leah Butler, carrying a bag, then hopped into a new Mercedes Benz and drive off. Radios crackled in the officer's vehicles. "She's got a bag in the car, stop the car," a supervisor advised the troops.
According to affidavit filed by DEA agent Steven Miller, "when deputies stopped the car, Mrs. Butler, noticeably nervous, consented to a search."
Inside the suspicious "bag" found in the vehicle Mrs. Butler was driving the officers found a treasure trove of evidence:
A loaded 9.mm handgun
Unloaded Intratec(Tech-9) handgun
Several loaded ammo magazines and extra ammunition
$39,500 in cash
"There is probable cause to believe the items recovered from Leah Butler vehicle was evidence of Henry Butler's drug trafficking," DEA Miller stated.
Charged with obstructing a federal investigation in Brooklyn federal court, Leah Butler was released from jail on $50,000,00 bond and ordered to wear an ankle monitoring bracelet.
Her lawyer, Jim McMillan declined comment.
At one point in her priviledged life, Leah Daniels Butler was a heavy go-getter, a highly talented woman, who worked for her brother, Lee Daniels, a famous director in the movie industry.
On July 15, 2011, Leah Butler pled guility to possessing Ecstasy stemming from the arrest involving her's husband's operation who been indicted along with Rosemond and his crew.
She faces up to six months in prison, on the misdemeanor conviction.
According to James "Jimmy" Rosemond: Henry “Black” Butler, a known rolling 60’s gang member, he and his wife Leah Daniels are star ‘witnesses’ who were arrested with drugs and machine guns in Los Angeles. Butler was promised five years and his wife got her case dismissed in exchange for implicating me in their operation. I know nothing of Butler’s criminal activities and was never involved with him concerning those criminal activities. I just know him as a self-proclaimed gangbanger who told jokes all the time and worked for Loud Records in the 90’s. They leaked all this false information about me to the media and left out the truth that Henry Butler denied my involvement until he was promised a reduced sentence of five years if he included me in his operations. There’s absolutely no evidence that supports my involvement in any of this, yet I have been implicated with someone I have no associations with.
James "Jimmy" Rosemond was sentenced to life in prison.
"ONLINE UNDERAGE BROTHEL"
by: Rafael Olmeda
The operators of an alleged sex and drug ring known as the "Str8Profit Boyz" entered not guilty pleas this week on charges of racketeering, human trafficking and living off the earnings of underage prostitutes.
Gerald Nelson (above), 23; Andre Veira, 27; Antonio Johnson, 27; Vicki Pierre, 19; Pakeith White, 23; and Dexter Curry, 27, face a slew of charges related to accusations they ran a house of prostitution in West Park and regularly recruited teenagers to have sex for money.
The Str8Profit Boyz maintained a presence on Facebook and Instagram as rappers and music producers, but prosecutors say they made their real money peddling sex and drugs.
Detectives began looking in earnest at the Str8Profit Boyz (pronounced "straight profit boys") last summer, according to court documents. At that time, Nelson was implicated in the disappearance of a 17-year-old girl whose picture turned up in ads posted on Backpage.com, a web site investigators believe is used by pimps to recruit customers for prostitution. Other victims appeared on the site as well.
Over the following months, evidence was gathered against all six defendants.
According to an arrest warrant signed May 19 by Broward Circuit Judge Martin Bidwill, Veira is believed to be the ringleader of the organization. He rented a house on the 5900 block of Southwest 26 Court in West Park that was used by prostitutes and from which illegal drugs were sold, according to the warrant.
Pierre was Veira's girlfriend and bore his child late last year. According to the warrant, she has engaged in prostitution herself and "shares in the profits with Veira."
Nelson is Veira's cousin and conspired with Veira, according to the warrant.
Curry "pays a share of the rent for the house" and provided armed security, while Johnson also paid, helped collect money and physically abused some of the girls, the warrant states.
White is accused of dealing drugs out of the house and staying there "to keep control and order."
Prosecutors believe there were at least five underage victims and probably more.
All six are in custody in lieu of bonds ranging from $211,000 to $273,000, with some ordered held without bond.
"BLACK FEMALE SPORTS AGENT"
by: Theresa Therilus
I’m a 5-foot-4, 130-pound woman who loves her stilettos and pastel suits—especially pink ones.
What do I know about football? A lot.
As a longtime NFL agent and entertainment attorney, I’m as savvy as many of the 250-pounders on the field. And from my first Miami Dolphins game at the age of 9, where I sang to the fight song alongside my dad, to my trips to 23 of the 31 NFL stadiums, I’ve spent more time watching the sport than most people will in their lifetimes.
Yet I still have to work to prove that I know even the basics. Shocking? Not really.
There’s a serious dearth of women, especially women of color, on the business side of the NFL. Yes, the league targets female fans through marketing of “Just for Her” NFL gear and the “Lingerie Football League.” But if you ask me, these efforts serve only to titillate the male football-fan population. Moreover, they display the league’s unwillingness to send a message that female fans can become any more than passive spectators of the sport, decked out in fitted jerseys designed to cling to their curves as much as to show their pride.
All of this, combined with societywide sexism, translates to how much women with careers tied to the NFL are valued. It’s no wonder that cheerleaders are paid less than male mascots. It’s no wonder that each week, fans fixate on Fox Sports reporter Pam Oliver’s hairstyle choices instead of on her work.
Even once I get past the assumption that I’m clueless and establish my NFL knowledge and qualifications (I’m a Harvard-educated lawyer with plenty of negotiation experience), I have been disappointed—though not surprised—when I’ve discovered that a potential client still held on to ulterior motives.
One potential first-round draft pick brought to my office a signed representation agreement—a rare move by a player of his caliber, especially vis-à-vis an agent who was not part of one of the larger NFL agencies. Just as I was about to fax the agreement to the NFL Players Association, he said, “I’m going to sleep with you one day.”
It took a few long seconds, but I pressed the cancel button on the fax machine, scratching a multimillion-dollar deal and career-defining opportunity. As I handed him back the agreement, I replied, “Not in a million years.”
Seeing the expression on my face, he responded, “I don’t mean it like that. I’m just attracted to how well you know football.”
In the same way that the NFL’s female-marketing initiatives have served only to titillate the male fan, my knowledge of football and my business acumen had seemingly served only to titillate this particular player. “The only reason to hire me is because I’m an excellent attorney and I understand this business. I will never sleep with you. Sorry, I cannot represent you.”
I walked away from a coveted client and kept my dignity.
I’m guessing that when Sheryl Sandberg wrote her feminist career manifesto, Lean In, this wasn’t the type of workplace dilemma she contemplated.
I had better luck with Antwan Barnes, now a linebacker for the New York Jets, but I definitely had to do much more work than a man would have had to in order to gain his trust. “Defensive coordinator of the Jets in 2000? Who won the Super Bowl when linebacker Mike Jones made the game-saving tackle in the last few seconds?” He demanded a sort of trial by fire when I first signed him on. Like, how could this little lady in pink know anything about the game?
But when I calmly ticked off the answers to his questions, he shook his head in disbelief and nodded. “You really believe that you can be my agent?” he asked. “Get me into the NFL? I mean, you never played. You’re a girl.”
I knew it was coming, but I still had to take a long, deep breath before responding, “And you never played for the NFL, either. Right?” He sheepishly agreed, and I was ultimately able to rattle off enough facts, figures and insights to convince him that I knew the game and the business.
But even when life as an agent was good, my personal life paid a price. As if we’re not already inundated with tales of how hard it is for professional black women to find love, imagine telling your boyfriend that your travel mate is a 250-pound professional athlete? It hasn’t always made for smooth relationships. And to be completely honest, it takes a lot of composure on my end to keep professional boundaries with a male athlete who has a body to die for.
All of this is partly why, in 2011, I changed paths to represent professional athletes as an NFL marketing agent in business affairs unrelated to their teams. While my race and gender still make me a minority in my new area, the distance from the football field itself and its accompanying culture has meant fewer biases to battle and much-needed peace of mind.
Being a woman compounds the pressure in this volatile, competitive business where you can be hired one day and fired the next. My career as an agent is about so much more than just prancing through the locker room in heels. I’ve given up on expecting that everyone will understand that, but I’ll never surrender my love for the game.
My Thing Is: Yes, I know the game. No, I won’t date clients. In this testosterone-fueled field, battling bias can be another full-time job.
Dewey Gatson, better known as Rajo Jack or his pseudonym Jack DeSoto, (July 28, 1905 in Tyler, Texas – February 27, 1956) was an American race car driver. He is known as one of the first African American racers in America. He won races up and down the West Coast of the United States in stock cars, midgets, big cars and motorcycles. Rajo Jack was inducted in the West Coast Stock Car Hall of Fame in 2003 and the National Sprint Car Hall of Fame in 2007.
Rajo Jack raced in a time of racial prejudice, and he was frequently a target of racism. He raced long before Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat to make room for a white passenger, and over a decade before Jackie Robinson first played in Major League Baseball. When he first started racing, he would duck his head behind the cowling when someone was taking a picture.He was respected among his peers for his talent, so he was generally allowed access to racing circles in spite of his color. Drivers often drove between tracks as a group. One restaurant owner refused to serve Rajo Jack. The other drivers said that they all would be served or they all would leave. The owner served all of them. The same thing frequently happened at motels and the drivers would band together. He often claimed to be a Portuguese man named Jack DeSoto to be able to race. Other times he claimed that he was a Native American to get around the color barrier. But fans' acceptance had limits. His wife Ruth had to be with him every time he won because she would do the trophy girl's job: give him the trophy and a kiss.He once let the other driver win in a two lap match race because he knew that he couldn't kiss the white trophy girl.
Jack was considered a true "outlaw" racer since he never raced in the AAA, the prominent racing association of the time in the United States. Only AAA members raced in the Indianapolis 500, the premiere race in the country. He claimed that he would never pass the physical examination because he was blind in one eye. His fellow racers knew it was because of his skin color.
Rajo Jack was the oldest of six children. He was raised by his parents Noah Gatson and his mother Frances Scott in Tyler,Texas. Noah Gatson had steady work with a railroad, which kept his family in a better financial state than other African-Americans in Texas.
Dewey Gatson was hired by the Doc Marcell Medicine Show as a roustabout general laborer at 16 years old. Gatson quickly became known among his peers for his talent with mechanical devices, especially anything with wheels and an engine. Gatson modified a truck into a house car for the Marcell family. He later was put in charge of the show's fleet of twenty cars in St. Johns, Oregon. He began racing with moderate success in the early 1920s at the fairs that the Marcell family followed across the country. He raced under the name "Jack DeSoto." He later moved down to Pasadena, California, and worked for the Marcells until their company failed during the Great Depression.
Gatson would soup up all of his own Model T Fords cars with Rajo cylinder heads. In the early 1930s, Rajo owner Joe Jagersberger named Gatson/Jack DeSoto his Los Angeles dealer and salesman, and the name "Rajo Jack" was born. Rajo Jack raced in many forms of motorsport and he used many kinds of engines. Rajo was a mechanic for Quinn at Legion Ascot Speedway. After Quinn died, Rajo was given his 225 cubic inch Miller engine.
On April 29, 1939 Rajo assessed his Miller engine which he had torn apart while repairing its main bearing. Parts were strewn around his garage. He needed to drive 400 miles (640 km) to Oakland for a 100 mile (160 mile) race the next day. He called his wife Ruth to get ready for the drive to Oakland. She thought that he meant to get ready for the ride. She came outside to find him backing up their truck to the garage. They wheeled the car onto the truck. Rajo put the pieces onto the bed of the truck, grabbed the necessary tools, and said "You drive, I'm going to put this thing together on the road". He put the engine together while she drove. He got it done just in time for qualifying. He qualified third and finished second in the race.
While he raced mainly on the West Coast, he traveled as far east as Dayton, Ohio for a fair that year. On his drive back west, he stopped to race at the Steele County fair in Owatonna, Minnesota. He was badly injured along with Bayliss Levrett in an accident that claimed the life of Wayne "Boots" Pearson. Rajo received a compound fracture of his leg and a severe concussion.
He occasionally did stunts on motorcycles. He had an accident in one of his stunts, and he became blind in his right eye.
Rajo sold auto parts, raced, and worked as a mechanic until he died on February 27, 1956. He was travelling with his brother when he died of heart failure in Kern County, California.The name on his death certificate read Rajo Jack. He is buried in the Lincoln Memorial Cemetery in Carson, California.
On Monday, December 28, 1992, some of Motown’s biggest stars gathered at the Union Second Baptist Church to pay their final respects to Maurice King, a man whose talent helped them to develop into world class artists. The Spinners and Stevie Wonder were among the hundreds of mourners who gathered that cold December day. Inside the church the atmosphere was warmer and filled with beautiful sounds. Gladys Knight, whom King first brought to Detroit as child of twelve, sang a song. Later, Martha Reeves declared to King’s son Evans that King was “the reason we’re still in show business.” Many musicians were there that day; they’d worked with, and respected, Maurice King. In Detroit, at least, King was a celebrity.
In a career which spanned nearly half a century, King played important parts in Detroit music: He was a bandleader at the fabled Flame Show Bar, the most important outlet for black entertainers during the 1950s. He was musical director of artist development at Motown Records for ten years. After Motown he served as music director for the Spinners, guiding them through countless appearances, conducting six to 60 piece ensembles, and arranging their music. In his last years he mentored younger musicians like D.C. Drive. He died in Detroit on December 23, 1992.
An excellent musician, he was also soft-spoken and sophisticated, a man who expressed himself clearly and confidently. He had a strong personality and always did things ‘his way’. King had a good sense of humor, a knack for winning at cards, a weakness for brightly colored tuxedoes and custom-made attire. His music arrangements were distinctive and audacious. A perfectionist who eschewed drink and smoke, King settled for nothing less than the best. He was a consummate professional.
Born the youngest of six in the heart of the Mississippi Delta — Renshaw, Miss. — in 1911 and raised in neighboring Greenwood, Clarence (Maurice) King was inspired to play clarinet after hearing a minstrel band while in grammar school. By the time he graduated from high school, King (now playing alto saxophone – it was less of a struggle) was known as a gifted child. He moved to Nashville, “the Athens of the south,” in the early 1930s to study music at Tennessee A&I State College (now Tennessee State University).
King later got involved with an attractive freshman named Eddie Mae Waller. After Eddie Mae became pregnant, both students dropped out of school. Eddie Mae moved back to Mississippi to stay with her family and await the birth of their child, and King stayed around Nashville and began working full time as a musician. The two were married in late 1933. Clarence King, Jr., was born in 1934, (followed by Evans Waller in 1937 and Karen Diane in 1950. A fourth child, Gregory, died shortly after birth.)
Eddie Mae’s father got into a serious fight with a white man and, as a result, he and his family moved to Detroit and stayed with relatives.
After five years on the road, Maurice was glad to get back home. But he didn’t rest long, as his reputation brought job offers, including one from veteran Detroit club owner Morris Wasserman. Wasserman was preparing to open the Flame Show Bar, at 4264 John R Street at Canfield. John R, dubbed the “street of music” by Detroit’s African-American press, blossomed with entertainment venues as Detroit’s black population moved north from Paradise Valley on the east side of Woodward. The grand opening was set for June 24, 1949. Wasserman wanted to feature national acts seven nights each week, and for this he needed a musical “man for all seasons”: a bandleader, arranger, and composer who could make national stars sound good — and do it with style. King was the man for the job.
Artists like Billie Holiday (appropriately, the first “name” vocalist to play the Flame), T-Bone Walker, Wynonie Harris, Sarah Vaughan, to name only a few, appeared at the Flame. Johnny Ray got his ‘big break’ there. He lived with the King’s for six months and never forgot Maurice’s kindness or his superb arrangements.
The club attracted a racially mixed crowd; customers from different Detroit strata felt comfortable there. Weeknights were dominated by Detroit’s sportin’ life crowd — pimps, prostitutes and numbers men. The sharp dressers and more conservative social elements came in on weekends. There were often lines of customers waiting to get in; entry was on a first come, first served basis — unless you laid some cash on the doorman. “That was one, and only one, of the little hustles going on,” Bowles told me with a laugh. “You could get anything at the Flame if you had enough money.”
Berry Gordy, just beginning his career as a songwriter in the mid-1950s, offered a wide-eyed look at the John R music scene in his autobiography, "To Be Loved."
“All the beautiful people came to life at night — the sharpest-dressed black and white people I had ever seen — jewelry flashing, beautiful furs — something else…John R Street was jumping with clubs like Sonny Wilson’s Garfield Lounge, the Chesterfield Lounge and, nearby, the Frolic Show Bar. But where you’d usually find me was down the street on the corner of John R and Canfield at the most popular of all, the Flame Show Bar. The top acts performed on a stage built right into the bar.”
Gordy’s sister Gwen owned the photo concession at the Flame. She introduced Berry to Flame manager Al Green, who had King and several budding artists, like LaVern Baker, Johnny Ray and Jackie Wilson, signed to personal contracts. Wilson recorded some of Gordy's earliest efforts, like “Reet Petite” and “To Be Loved”. Gordy was impressed with King and later brought he and Beans Bowles to Motown.
“I was the Musical Director of Artist Development” at Motown, King recalled. “I taught them (the vocal groups) how to phrase. I arranged their music; I arranged songs for them. I taught them how to blend. I collaborated with their choreographer, did a lot of their staging. I didn’t teach them any dance steps, but I suggested a few to the choreographer (Cholly Atkins) sometimes.”
Johnny Trudell, whom Maurice brought into the Motown fold, summed up King’s contribution thusly: “Maurice brought sophistication and class to Motown.”
King had a reputation at Motown as a father figure, and he spent more time with the Motown acts than with his family – Eddie Mae raised their children.
Maurice was a stickler for appointment times — no group or singer would dare to turn up late for a session with Mr. King. His lessons were taken seriously and appreciated. “He was a part of our longevity,” Gladys Knight told Evans. She first met Maurice in 1956 when he brought Gladys, then age twelve, to Detroit to sing in a Powell Lindsay production.
“He taught us the things that would help us to stay out here, the small things like how we got up in the morning, how we responded to people,” said Knight. “And he kept track of our appearances”.
King, known as Motown’s music troubleshooter, whipped many a road band into shape and also occasionally conducted in the studio.
Clarence recalls how his father created arrangements for Motown’s vocalists. “He had one of those silver Panasonic tape recorders. He’d catch those groups with their little rhythm sections….couldn’t read a note as big as a house, didn’t know theory, but had the ‘stuff’. He could record that, listen to it, and create an arrangement for an eighteen-piece orchestra with the feel of what they had played. The music was very, very difficult.”
Trumpeter Gordon Stump, then a first-call theater musician, worked for King many times at Spinners performances. He recalled King’s music — and his method of maintaining order during rehearsals. King was of average height with a large belly, but he exuded an aura of power and authority.
Maurice continued his music activities but he foundered after Eddie Mae’s death in 1988. King always supported his family financially (he put Clarence Jr. and Karen through college) but wasn’t around often enough to be an effective father. He depended upon Eddie Mae to manage their money, raise their children and take care of his needs. He didn’t have the necessary survival skills, like cooking and money management, and didn’t seem to be interested in acquiring them – that would take him away from his music.
Maurice wed his longtime friend Nellie Foreman just a few months before his own death on December 18, 1992. “Maurice died because he just got tired of living. He just stopped eating,” claims Clarence Jr.. “He did it his way. He did everything his way.”
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