Herb Alpert Foundation to donate $10.1 million to LACC — making studies for music majors tuition-free

Trumpeter Herb Alpert, known for his unique brand of Latin-tinged jazz pop, and for being a co-founder of A&M Records, a label that released key albums by artists from Cat Stevens to Janet Jackson, is now making his mark on education. The musician’s namesake foundation, co-founded with his wife, singer Lani Hall, is making a $10.1-million donation to Los Angeles City College that will provide all music majors at the school with a tuition-free education.

Read more

Oprah Winfrey reveals a Queen Sugar sex scene gave her an idea for Stedman Graham.
by Nicole Sperling | August 26 2016 — 3:47 PM EDT

Ava DuVernay, creator of the upcoming OWN series Queen Sugar, says she shoots sex scenes in a restrained, almost prudish way — not a lot of movement, more focus on the before and the after rather than the doing.

“I try to show what happens before and after and around, because I think that’s sexier,” explains DuVernay.

To her producer and collaborator Oprah Winfrey, whatever she’s doing is working. “Her sex scenes look damn sexy,” says Winfrey, before launching into a story about the first time she and her bestie Gayle King watched the first episode of the series, in which Charley Bordelon West (Dawn-Lyen Gardner) gets down with her husband Davis West (Timon Kyle Durrett) outside in the evening by their stunning pool overlooking the city of Los Angeles.

The scene involves Durrett picking up Gardner from the sofa in a breezy, graceful move, as if she weighs nothing at all. That was DuVernay’s hope: “We did that scene five times,” she explains. “I said, ‘I want this to be effortless, like she is as light as a feather.’”

It seemed to have the right effect. When King and Winfrey watched the scene, Winfrey recalls King saying, “God, I wish somebody would pick me up like that,” she shares, laughing.

Quips Winfrey: “I said, “He’d probably hurt his back and fall into the pool. [Laughs] And that would ruin the scene.”

Winfrey goes on to describe another scene in a later episode that finds one of the main characters in bed and opening a blanket to invite his partner in. “You want to be that person,” she says. “It hits a sensual nerve. He is unhooking her bra, and you’re like, woah! I’m like, ‘I’m going to get Stedman [Graham] to unhook my bra and see what happens. Put your hand in my panty hose and let’s see what happen.


One year ago today, the best week of my life came to an end as Taylor played her last LA show of the 1989 Tour. Out of the thirteen shows I attended, these five hold such a special place in my heart. It was the week of magic, of everything being perfect. I couldn’t have dreamed of a better week. It was the week Taylor pointed at me at two shows, the week I met Mama Swift for the first time, the week I witnessed some of the best artists and celebrities in the world perform with Taylor, the week I went to a concert alone for the first time. It was also the week Mama Swift took my mom and I from the upper level to the b-stage with her. And every time I think of that moment, I have to convince myself it really happened. To have attended this tour in my favorite city, Los Angeles, with seats on the floor for all five sold out nights, is the most incredible thing I have ever experienced. And it will always be the first thing to come to mind when I reflect on the best times of my life. Thank you for these experiences, Taylor. My life would be so dull without you.