BILL VAUGHAN’S TASTY CLIPS: Macy Gray launches foundation for police brutality victims

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By Bill Vaughan

Entertainment Writer

Like many in these times of unrest, Grammy Award-winning singer Macy Gray got tired of constant cases of inhumane treatment of people at the hands of law enforcement entities and decided to do something about it.

As a result, the artist who has sold over 25 million albums since her arrival with the triple-platinum “How Life Is” in 1999, has founded MyGood.org, a nonprofit organization dedicated to support the families of victims of police brutality as they face many unfortunate challenges after the death of a loved one.

Funds from the foundation will be given to defer costs of hospital and funeral bills that weigh heavy on these families, as well as providing assets for mental health treatment and legal aid.

Gray knows firsthand what is needed as she witnessed her aunt and uncle struggle after their son was killed in a bar fight over four years ago.

“I think we’re in a day where everything kind of needs a do over,” she told Tasty Clips. “The police system has been around since the 1700s under the same ideology. The Constitution needs to be rewritten. That’s old.  It’s ridiculous we’re still following that. It’s a lot of things. The White House is old. Redo that. It’s old as sh–. Ever been in there?”

“I have some ideas like everyone else,” she added, “But we definitely can’t leave it as it is because we’re just going to get the same.”

To raise funds for MyGood.org, the inaugural Halloween Bingo Bash is being held Oct. 24 at 5 p.m. Players will be able to get into the spirit a week early during the online Zoom event hosted by Gray and Demi Weitz (daughter of WME partner/agent Richard Weitz and founder of Quarantunes).

The evening will include special celebrity guest appearances and performances from musician Sheila E., comics Wanda Sykes and Maz Jobrani, actor Page Kennedy, financial expert Suze Orman and more; in addition to a costume contest, scavenger hunt for prizes and a live performance from Gray, who will release new music Valentine’s Day under the name of her officially titled band California Jet Club.   

With memorable roles in “Training Day” and “Tyler Perry’s For Colored Girls,” she has three more on the way — “Dutch” starring Lance Gross, “Real Talk” with Michael Beach, and “Forget To Remember” featuring Louis Gossett Jr.

When pressed on who she would like to play in a biopic, Gray had a surprising answer.

“Probably Beyoncé,” she responded, “because then I would have to be forced to get in shape so I could play the role. I would have the mindset that I have to lose all the COVID weight. My butt is just spreading by the day.  It’s awful, but it’s hard with so much going on. When I’m stressed, I just want to eat and go to sleep and it’s such a stressful time it’s horrible for my look.”

To sign up for Bingo, purchase tickets for the event or to make donations in support, please visit MyGood.org or the Facebook page.

NEW MUSIC: Charlie Wilson is following his two No. 1 singles this year — “One I Got” and the Bruno Mars-produced “Forever Valentine” — with “All Of My Love,” a duet with the legendary Smokey Robinson. Look for the video premiere Oct. 23 on YouTube.

In celebration of his 80th birthday and as a gift to his fans worldwide, soccer legend Pelé has teamed with Grammy Award-winning duo Rodrigo y Gabriela to release his original composition “Acredita No Véio (Listen To The Old Man).”

Regarding the song, Pelé says: “I wrote this one because when I used to play with Santos, the coach used to say that when we lost, it was the players’ fault, but when we won, it was the macumba (black magic) that had helped. The song is joking about that — of course, macumba doesn’t win games at all.”

FESTIVAL FILE: The 26th annual African American Film Marketplace & S.E. Manly Short Film Showcase (Oct. 23–Nov. 9) is dedicated to iconic filmmaker Michael Schultz, who will join a virtual commemoration of the 45th anniversary of his classic “Cooley High” on Oct. 24. Visit bherc.org for details.

Planet Afropunk (Oct. 23–25) boasts of bringing together the largest virtual gathering of the worldwide Black creative community into one curated online space for the first time in its 15-year history. Common, Ari Lennox, Moses Sumney, Carlinhos Brown and Bootsy Collins are but a few of the participants at PlanetAfropunk.com.

CLIPPETTES: Upon finishing a Colin Kaepernick docu-series for Netflix, filmmaker Ava DuVernay will segue into an adaptation of Isabel Wilkerson’s best-seller “Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents” for the streaming service

Reggae star Ziggy Marley will host a concert, drive-in style at Anaheim’s City National Grove on Oct. 24 with two shows: a kids’ focused set at 2 p.m.; and evening show with special guest Zuri. For more, visit DriveInOC.com

Also that date, a second Thundercat & Hannibal Burress Drive-In Concert at the Rose Bowl has been added at 4:30 p.m. Check IWannaHotBox.com for more

Later, SaturdayNightWithMarcusMiller.com hosts the Grammy-winning bassist and guests Jonathan Butler, Kirk Whalum, Keiko Matsui and Peter White to the virtual stage along with the Saturday Night Band and comic Alonzo Bodden …

Wendell Pierce (“The Wire,” “Jack Ryan”) has been cast as iconic blues guitarist B.B. King for a biopic to be named after one of his greatest hits “The Thrill Is Gone.”

TASTY QUIP: “There’s no pension plan for leaders. Martin Luther King died penniless. Malcolm X died penniless. I don’t want do that.” – DAVE CHAPPELLE on Netflix’ “My Next Guest Needs No Introduction with David Letterman”

TC ON TV: Oct. 23 – “Bad Hair” (Hulu): Justin Simien (“Dear White People”) directs this horror satire about a woman (Elle Lorraine) who may have a haunted weave. Blair Underwood, Laverne Cox, Usher, MC Lyte, Kelly Rowland and Robin Thede round out the cast. “On The Rocks” (Apple TV+): Rashida Jones, Bill Murray and Marlon Wayans lead this movie about a daughter and father spying on her husband. “Ready To Love” (OWN): Producer Will Packer‘s popular dating series hosted by Thomas “Nephew Tommy” Miles returns with an all-new cast from Houston and the twist of quarantining the hopefuls together at a luxury mountain resort.

Oct. 24 – “Christmas Unwrapped” (Lifetime): From executive producer Tiffany Haddish comes an early holiday confection starring Amber Stevens West and Cheryl Ladd. “HBCU Homecoming 2020” (YouTube): 2 Chainz, Saweetie, Chloe x Halle, Desi Banks, Pretty Vee, NLE Choppa, Ty Tribbett, Jackson State University’s Sonic Boom, FAMU’s Marching 100 and more unite to raise money for the United Negro College Fund, which will share 50% with the Thurgood Marshall College Fund. “Saturday Night Live” (NBC): Adele is hosting with musical guest H.E.R.

Oct. 25 – “Rock Legends” (AXS): This episode exploring the New Orleans Sound features Fats Domino, Little Richard and Dixie Cups. “Uncensored” (TV1): “Black Girl Magic”

Oct. 26 – “The Eric Andre Show” (Cartoon): The deranged late-night Adult Swim talk show returns for a fifth season with Hannibal Buress, Filipe Esparza, Lakeith Stanfield and guest stars including Luis Guzman, Tia Carrere, Robin Givens and Omarion, among others. “Essential Heroes: A Momento Latino Event” (CBS): A celebration of Latinx culture in America, produced and hosted by Eva Longoria, along with co-hosts Gloria Estefan and Ricky Martin.

Oct. 27 – “Hip Hop Awards 2020” (BET): Lil Wayne, Big Sean, Gucci Mane, Cordae, Mulatto, Lil Baby, Ty Dolla $ign, Quavo, Burna Boy and Coldplay’s Chris Martin are among the performers for the ceremony honoring Master P. “Nick News: Kids Pick The Election” (Nick): Keke Palmer hosts this special educating children on voting. “This Is Us” (NBC): The Pearson brothers (Sterling K. Brown, Justin Hartley) make up in the two-hour season premiere.

Oct. 29 – “City So Real” (NGC): Filmmaker Steve James (“Hoop Dreams”) presents his critically acclaimed five-part documentary series on Chicago and its history-making 2019 mayoral election commercial free before moving to Hulu the following day. The premiere on National Geographic will exclusively feature an epic fifth episode that follows the COVID-19 pandemic and social uprising following George Floyd‘s death.

TASTY QUIP: “I wonder would I be standing here right now if it weren’t for the big Black women who refused to have their voices be suppressed. I just want to say if you’re at home watching this and you are thinking about changing yourself to feel worthy, this is your sign to remain true to who you are. When people try to suppress something, it’s normally because that thing holds power. They’re afraid of your power. There’s power in who you are. There’s power in your voice. So whether it’s through music, protest, or your right to vote, use your power, use your voice, and refuse to be suppressed.” – LIZZO upon accepting the Billboard Music Award for Top Song Sales Artist

As featured in the Los Angeles Wave and Independent, Tasty Clips is one of the leading entertainment columns in the nation, serving nearly one million weekly readers. Bill Vaughan may be reached at tastyclips@yahoo.com, via Twitter @tastyclips, or Instagram @tasty_clips.