Skip to main content


Wendy Williams Diagnosed with Dementia and Her Lifetime Documentary Reveals Struggles with Health and Finances

Wendy Williams has always been a friend in my head, as the former talk show host was fond of saying about celebrities she liked and admired.  Before her eponymous "The Wendy Williams Show" became a nationally syndicated treasure trove for all the goss, I listened to Wendy's daily chat fest on WBLS in New York City. That radio show was a source of afternoon delight while working 9 to 5, and  I've been a fan of the "Queen of All Media" for a long time. So it has been hard to watch Wendy devolve into a hot topic -- while publicly dealing with the embarrassment of infidelity in her marriage, a nasty divorce, losing her hit talk show and subsequent health and financial woes.  While she was still doing her talk show, which ran for 12 years, the gossip girl openly discussed her battles with substance abuse and her medical struggles with Graves' Disease and Lymphedema. I was even watching when Wendy fainted on live television during a 2017 Halloween episode of h
Recent posts

Tony! Toni! Toné! Reunites and Does It Again With Their 'Just Me and You Tour 2023'

(Tracy E. Hopkins) The first time I saw Tony! Toni! Toné!  in concert, I was a sophomore at Howard University. The New Jack Swing-leaning lineup for the 1989 Homecoming concert at Cramton Auditorium also included Guy (Aaron Hall, Damian Hall and Teddy Riley).  Photo credit for all photos: David “Odiwams” Wright Back then, Guy was the silk set wearing headliner and the boho cool Cali trio – brothers Raphael Saadiq (real name Charles Wiggins) and D’W ayne Wiggins and their cousin Timothy Christian Riley – were the opening act, trying their hardest to win over the East coast-heavy crowd with an energized performance punctuated by choreographed dance moves and their single at the time, “Little Walter.” But if you ask me which group’s music catalog resonates more deeply with me now and hits the right nostalgic notes (like in that Bee Gees “How Deep is Your Love” way), without any Verzuz battle necessary the answer would clearly be Tony! Toni! Toné!. Although they only recorded four studio a

Memorial Day Weekend 2023 Cultural Highlight: DanceAfrica Festival at the Brooklyn Academy of Music and Throughout Brooklyn

In her essay, " African Dance is Medicine for the Mind, Body and Spirit ," dancer, teacher and choreographer Cherie Hill wrote, "The more I perform African dance, the more I discover and enjoy euphoria. When the drums are beating and the body is dancing everything fits in sync and I feel limitless and powerful."   Photo by Nate Palmer                                                                                                                         Hill is honored with a portrait by Cecilia Lamptey-Botchway that's on display   at the  BAM Howard Gilman Opera House  during the annual  DanceAfrica Festival .  The festival celebrates Black joy and resilience and the regal power of African dance.  I mark my calendar each year for the  DanceAfrica Bazaar, where I often run into old friends and see familiar faces. In a Brooklyn that has quickly become gentrified, I love to see us walking tall, beaming with pride and to quote Bey, "shining, shining, shining, y

Mary J. Blige Came to Slay on Her Good Morning Gorgeous Tour

(Tracy E. Hopkins) Mary J. Blige is a survivor. She's not gon' give up. The still reigning Queen of Hip-Hop Soul is also not gon' cry.  She's been through her share of heartache, but the native New Yorker made it clear during her energetic and heartfelt performance earlier this month at  Brooklyn's  Barclays Center that she's in a good headspace. It appears she's finally found the real love that she's been searching for, and it's self love. It was  also abundantly clear that this Brooklyn audience had a love jones for Mary J.  The hype crowd was warmed up by a hip-hop banger set by Funkmaster Flex (in  feisty Flex fashion he  proclaimed that he wasn't getting paid to DJ, but he was there because he loves Mary) and opening acts Queen Naija and Ella Mai (Mai, who was joined onstage briefly by Babyface, was  the  more engaging and tasteful pick). But once Mary hit the stage, most of what happened beforehand quickly took a backseat. Decked out in a c

Soak Up the Last Weeks of Summer Sun At The Rockaway Hotel

Summer is winding down, but there's still time to soak up the sun -- while wearing sunscreen, chic shades and a protective hat or sun visor, of course. If you're in New York City, The Pool at The Rockaway Hotel + Spa  is a cool place to swim, lounge and discreetly people watch while swaying to beat of ambient music.  It's a vibe! Day passes are available for non-hotel guests Monday through Thursday (excluding private events, 10 am -7 pm).  Located in the heart of the Rockaway Beach community in Queens, New York, the Rockaway Hotel is just a few short blocks from the sand and surf. Besides the outdoor pool,  the  newly built 84,000 square foot hotel offers around 60 guest rooms, a restaurant, a rooftop bar, and a large event space. And it's a nice addition to the area.  When my husband and I visited the popular pool, we enjoyed yummy sips and bites poolside. Lounging chairs are first come, first serve so the early bird gets the spot of their choice. After chilling at t

The Re-Education of NeNe Leakes: The Reality Star Talks About College Hill, What Housewives She's Still Friends With and More

(Tracy E. Hopkins) I’ve been a fan of The Real Housewives of Atlanta since the beginning.     So I jumped at the chance to chat with original RHOA cast member and breakout star NeNe Leakes.     It’s been a tough couple of years since NeNe parted ways with the show. In 2021 her husband Gregg lost his battle with colon cancer and earlier this year she filed a discrimination lawsuit against her former employer, Bravo. But on the brighter side, the 54-year-old is dating again and starring in the BET limited reality series,   College Hill: Celebrity Edition.    Along with other headline-grabbing reality TV stars including, Big Freedia, Lamar Odom, Stacey Dash and Ray J., NeNe and the members of the cast lived together and attended classes at the historically Black Texas Southern University.     We asked NeNe what it was like to go back to school, what the biggest misconception about her is, which housewives she's still friendly with, and more.   Everything She Wants : What did it feel