BILL VAUGHAN’S TASTY CLIPS: Ashanti is star bound for Hollywood Walk of Fame

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By Bill Vaughan

Entertainment Writer

Grammy Award-winning singer, author, actress and executive producer Ashanti will be honored with the 2,718th star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 11:30 a.m. April 7.

The star, presented by the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce, will be dedicated in the category of recording at 7060 Hollywood Blvd.

Actress Tichina Arnold (“The Neighborhood,” “Martin”) and rapper Ja Rule (whose hit duets with the diva include the songs “Mesmerize” and “Always On Time”) will unveil the space with emcee Lupita Sanchez-Cornejo.

Ashanti has released six studio albums and received eight Billboard Awards, a Grammy, two American Music Awards, two Soul Train Awards, six ASCAP Awards among other illustrious honors. Ashanti has continued to reign at the top as one of Billboard’s “Top Females of the Decade from 2000-2010” and continues to break Billboard records as having a Hot 100 entry in the 2000’s, 2010s and 2020s.

Her acting credits include “The Muppets’ Wizard of Oz,” “Coach Carter,” “Resident Evil Extinction,” “John Tucker Must Die,” the recent “Honey Girls,” and the upcoming “The Plus One,” that she will star in and executive produce.

In addition, Ashanti has her own fragrance, “Precious Jewel” with AMC Beauty; is the first African American to land a national campaign with Herbal Essences; has a self-titled swimsuit line; a book on the way in May from Harper Collins; and has made more history as the first, Black female artist to partner and be a co-founder of a Web3 tech company, EQ Exchange.

People who are unable to attend and fans around the world are encouraged to watch the event exclusively on www.walkoffame.com.

GLORY HALLELUJAH: The 30th Pan African Film and Arts Festival will kick off its in-person return, and 13-day run with the world premiere of “Remember Me: The Mahalia Jackson Story” as its opening night selection on April 19 in L.A.

Starring Grammy-winning singer Ledisi and Columbus Short (“Scandal”) as the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., the look into the life and rise of the gospel singing legend is directed by Denise Dowe and features the stellar cast of Janet Hubert, Vanessa A. Williams, Wendy Raquel Robinson, Keith David, Corbin Bleu and Keith Robinson.

The festival has more than 200 film screenings and other events taking place April 19-May 1 at the Cinemark Baldwin Hills and the Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza. For more information, visit www.paff.org.

BRING IN THE STARS: For the first time in three years, PaleyFest LA returns in person as the spring’s hottest television fan festival April 2-10 at the Dolby Theatre.

Among the represented shows are “black-ish,” with Anthony Anderson, Tracee Ellis Ross, Marcus Scribner, Miles Brown, Marsai Martin and Jenifer Lewis on stage; “This Is Us;” “Superman & Lois;” “Ghosts;” “The Neighborhood;” “Hacks;” “Cobra Kai;” “Riverdale;” “Better Call Saul;” A Salute to the NCIS Universe celebrating “NCIS,” “NCIS: Los Angeles,” and “NCIS: Hawai’i;” and “Emily in Paris.”

Details and tickets are at www.paleyfest.org.

BROADWAY BOUND: Hot off receiving an honorary Oscar last week, actor Samuel L. Jackson has selected his next project — a lead turn in the Broadway revival of August Wilson’s Pulitzer Prize-winning play “The Piano Lesson” to co-star John David Washington and Danielle Brooks. His wife, Latanya Richardson Jackson, will direct the production to open in September.

TASTY QUIP: “Welp…I said it wouldn’t be boring.” – “The Oscars” producer WILL PACKER

CLIPPETTES: Singer-songwriter-guitarist Toshi Reagon & BIGLovely are rocking Royce Hall on April 1; with Angelique Kidjo representing the culture the following evening at the Soka Performing Arts Center

Largo presents Best Friends with Nicole Byer and Sasheer Zamata on April 3; as jazz fusion star Cory Henry performs at the Fonda Theatre

Journey: Freedom Tour 2022 with special guest Toto arrives at the Honda Center on April 4 and Crypto.Com Arena on April 5

The Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater begins a five-night stand at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion April 6–10

MUSE/IQUE’s “Songs & Stories of Laurel Canyon,” part of its yearlong concert series, “L.A. Composed: A Festival of Los Angeles Music,” takes place April 6-7 at The Huntington Library; and April 10 at the Skirball Cultural Center with singer-songwriter Nikka Costa, tenor Ashley Faatoalia and more

Femme It Forward presents Tank and the Bangas and Big Freedia at the Observatory April 7, while The Wailers hold it down at The Venice West.

TASTY QUIP: “If Chris Rock was Regina [King], Wanda Sykes, a woman, and that had happened, Will Smith doesn’t get honored on stage, no one’s standing up. Makes you think, like how does Hollywood feel about a man being assaulted? … In that moment, everyone just says we’re going to pretend like that didn’t happen, and just keep clapping. And that’s wrong, that’s a disservice to Chris. They just told Chris Rock how they felt about him as a comedian and how they felt about him as a man.” – AKBAR GBAJABIAMILA on CBS’ “The Talk”

TC ON TV: April 1 – “Great Performances” (PBS): “Fire Shut Up In My Bones,” Grammy-winning jazz musician and composer Terence Blanchard’s adaptation of Charles M. Blow’s memoir with a libretto by filmmaker Kasi Lemmons (“Harriet”), tells the story of a young man’s journey to overcome a life of trauma and hardship. “DJ Khaled: Another Win” (Fuse): Presents the story of the record producer, label executive, digital influencer and hip-hop superstar. “Jerrod Carmichael: Rothaniel” (HBO): A third stand-up special from the comic taped live at the legendary Blue Note Jazz Club in New York. “Jimmy Kimmel Live” (ABC): Red Hot Chili Peppers

April 2 – “Whitney, A Look Back” (CBS): Marking 10 years since Whitney Houston’s tragic passing, “Entertainment Tonight” goes into the vaults to produce this one-hour special featuring never-before-seen footage with the superstar. Interviews with those who knew her best, including Dionne Warwick, Clive Davis, CeCe Winans, Monica and Kelly Price, are featured. “Impractical Jokers” (TBS/TNT/TRU): Eric André “Saturday Night Live” (NBC): Jerrod Carmichael hosts with musical guest Gunna

April 3 – “The 64th Grammy Awards” (CBS): Trevor Noah hosts with performances from leading nominee Jon Batiste, H.E.R. (who plays the YouTube Theater April 5), Nas, Cynthia Erivo, Leslie Odom Jr., BTS, Billie Eilish, Lil Nas X with Jack Harlow, and Olivia Rodrigo. “Breaking The Band” (Reelz): The Jackson 5 and Prince and The Revolution are featured in back-to-back episodes. “Saints & Sinners” (Bounce): It is a winner-take-all clash as the drama series starring Vanessa Bell Calloway, Clifton Powell, Keith Robinson, Christian Keyes, Gloria Reuben, Richard Lawson, Dawn Halfkenny, Donna Biscoe and Afemo Omilami begins its sixth and final season. “Unsung” (TV1): P.M. Dawn “Uncensored” (TV1): Salli Richardson-Whitfield

April 4 – “AfroPoP: The Ultimate Cultural Exchange” (WorldChannel.org): Season 14 opens with “The Black Beatles,” a documentary about The Real Thing, a Black soul and funk band from England that became internationally famous in the 1970s. Their social commentary song “Children of the Ghetto” has been recorded by Earth, Wind & Fire’s Phillip Bailey and Mary J. Blige. “Long Slow Exhale” (Spectrum): Set in the high-stakes world of women’s college basketball starring Rose Rollins as a successful head coach who finds herself in the middle of a potentially career-shattering sexual abuse scandal. With Lyriq Bent (Netflix’ “She’s Gotta Have It”), Josh Lucas (“Yellowstone”) and Famke Janssen.

April 5 – “Gangsters: America’s Most Evil” (Reelz): A profile on Chicago’s “Larry Hoover: King of the Gangsters” opens season six. “Nick Cannon Presents: Wild ‘N Out” (VH1): Fivio Foreign, LightSkinKeisha

April 6 – “The Kardashians – A Robin Roberts Special” (ABC): The “Good Morning America” anchor interviews Kim, Khloe and Kourtney Kardashian and Kris Jenner for this primetime event. “Snowfall” (FX): The family gathers for Jerome and Louie’s wedding in this episode written by Walter Mosely.

April 7 – “Tokyo Vice” (HBO Max): Michael Mann (“Heat,” “Ali,” “Collateral“) directs the launch of this crime drama series loosely inspired by American journalist Jake Adelstein‘s non-fiction first-hand account of the Tokyo Metropolitan Police beat. It stars Ansel Elgort (“West Side Story,” “Baby Driver”) and the great Ken Watanabe (“The Last Samurai,” “Batman Begins,” “Inception“). “Traffic!” (Africa Channel): A second season of the drama centering on a working mother who finds her integrity put to the test during a murder investigation.

END QUOTE: “At your highest moment, be careful — that’s when the devil comes for you.” – DENZEL WASHINGTON to Will Smith at The Oscars

 

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.

 

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