dailyphoto091215New inspiration in studio for Keys
About two months before recording The Element of Freedom, Alicia Keys witnessed an event that would have a profound influence on her creative process: a Fleetwood Mac concert. “It was my sister’s birthday, and she wanted to see them,” says Keys, 29, referring to longtime best friend Erika Rose. The R&B singer/songwriter knew of the veteran band but wasn’t entirely familiar with its catalog. “So everyone was like, ‘What? You don’t know these songs?’ ” Other vintage pop acts also informed Freedom, her fourth studio album, which arrives today. Keys started “to experiment with keyboards from the late ’70s and ’80s. … I listened to a lot of Genesis, The Police, Tears for Fears— people who hadn’t been staples for me.” (Continue Reading…)

First-grade girl’s braid cut off by teacher
A Milwaukee teacher at Congress Elementary School is under fire and may face disciplinary action after she cut off one of her students braids. According to Helen Cunningham, the mother of seven-year-old first-grader Lamya Cammon, her child’s teacher reportedly grew “frustrated” by the girl’s absent-minded playing with her long, beaded braids. She called the girl up to the front of the class. “She said, ‘Don’t play with it anymore or I’ma cut off the rest,'” young Cammon told reporters. I went to my desk and cried, and [other students] was laughing. She threw it away. She said, ‘Now, what are young to go home and tell your mama?’ And then I said, ‘You cut off my hair.'” (Continue Reading…)

Study: Relationship perceptions among African-American youth
The existent literature about African-American youth and their relationships has tended to focus on sexual activity, instances of pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases. University of Arizona undergraduate researcher Beatrice Abiero said this as problematic, stating that researchers often fail to investigate perceptions associated with romantic relationships, particularly among African-American youth. “Positive as well as negative views about romantic relationships exist,” said Abiero, a student in the Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health. (Continue Reading…)

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