BILL VAUGHAN’S TASTY CLIPS: ‘Today’s’ Craig Melvin writes first children’s book

By Bill Vaughan

Entertainment Writer

Craig Melvin, co-host of NBC’s “The Today Show” and “3rd Hour of Today” has added children’s book author to his resume with the publishing of “I’m Proud of You,” illustrated by Sawyer Cloud, from Quill Tree Books. 

I got to echo the title to the man to whom I predicted would enjoy great success when we first met some 24 years ago as he returned to his hometown Columbia, South Carolina for a series of events.

This follow-up to his memoir, “Pops,” is a heartfelt message birthed out of his household raising youngsters Delano and Sybil with his wife — Fox Sports NFL sideline reporter Lindsay Czarniak

A “Today” parenting segment years ago on pointing things out with Dr. Mehmet Oz inspired him to get the ball rolling on this book.

“He said to try to keep your child engaged in conversation and he cited some study years ago that looked at the number of words that were spoken in the household,” Melvin said. “It found a great correlation between the number of words spoken in front of a child — not even to a child. 

“Just hearing words and the correlation between that and achievement in their life always stayed with me. And so, I’d say ‘Ask me questions’ and we would do a lot of that. Sometimes I have to remind myself that one day this is going to be beneficial to a child. It’s just that every day you don’t feel like being like a human Alexa.”

The book is dedicated to the fathers who were present in the home for the big events and the emotions. 

“A traditional ‘dad,’” Melvin explained. “People who kids look up to and share problems with. People who tell them ‘I’m proud of you.’ I wanted to make sure we recognize those dads as well. Some guys play that part, play that role for a lot of little boys and little girls and they should be celebrated as well.” 

TICKET WATCH: Childish Gambino, the musical alter-ego of Donald Glover — the multi-hyphenate whose “Mr. & Mrs. Smith” series has been renewed for a second season by Amazon, is returning to the stage for the first time in five years in support of a new release “Atavista.” Tickets for The New World Tour with stops with Willow set for Sept. 18 and 19 at Arena go on sale to the public 10 a.m., May 17 at 

Coming to America this fall is Nigerian singer-songwriter Tems, who became the first African artist to debut on top of the Billboard Hot 100 chart with her collaborations with Future, Justin Bieber and Drake. The Born in the Wild World Tour with special guests Naomi Sharon and Lekan hits The Greek on Oct. 1 with tickets also on sale May 17 at 

PROPS: Andra Day, Ravyn Lenae, The War and Treaty, and more are set to perform at the inaugural Grammy Hall of Fame Gala to be held May 21 at the Novo Theater. CBS’ Anthony Mason will host the event honoring Atlantic Records and recordings including De La Soul’s “3 Feet High and Rising,” “The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill,” as well as those by Donna Summer, Charley Pride, Wanda Jackson, William Bell, Kid Ory’s Creole Orchestra and The Doobie Brothers.

RED CARPET WALK: Jennifer Lopez, Sterling K. Brown, Simu Liu and others are expected for the world premiere of the Netflix sci-fi thriller “Atlas” May 20 at 5 p.m. Visit for info and free tickets. 

CLIPPETTES: Justin Timberlake’s The Forget Tomorrow World Tour hits The Forum for a two-night stand May 17

Nigeria’s Most Wanted Tour with Shallipopi & Odumodublvck comes to The Wiltern May 18, as Kate Hudson’s album release party is going on at The Bellwether … 

“Trap Soul” artist Bryson Tiller is at YouTube Theater May 19, while Boyz II Men with Robin Thicke are at Pechanga Casino, Madison McFerrin is at The Paramount, and comic London Hughes is at Lyric Hyperion Theatre … 

NBC announced that Snoop Dogg and Michael Bublé will join Gwen Stefani and Reba McEntire as coaches for the upcoming fall season of “The Voice”

Legendary German electronic music pioneers Kraftwerk begin a nine-performance residency May 21 at Walt Disney Concert Hall in which they will play one of their eight albums in their entirety each night along with a special finale May 30

The Wailers light up the Coach House May 22, while The Skatalites with DJ Boss Harmony are at Echoplex, and Ringo Starr & His All Starr Band land at The Venetian  

A Boogie Wit Da Hoodie’s Better Off Alone Tour arrives at The Forum on May 23, as Seth Macfarlane & His Big Band play Vibrato Grill. 

TC ON TV: May 17 – “The Big Cigar” (Apple TV+): Don Cheadle serves as director and executive producer on the first two episodes of this limited drama series that chronicles the story of Black Panther leader Huey P. Newton‘s escape to Cuba. Starring André Holland, Alessandro Nivola, Glynn Turman, Jordane Christie, Moses Ingram and Tiffany Boone. “Power” (Netflix): “RuPaul’s Drag Race All Stars” (Paramount+): Back for a ninth season followed by companion show “Untucked.” “Great Performances” (PBS): “Audra McDonald at the London Palladium” presents the six-time Tony Award winner in concert. “The Tonight Show” (NBC): Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue cover girl Gayle King (of “CBS This Morning”)

May 18 – “The Bad Guardian” (Lifetime): Melissa Joan Hart and La La Anthony star in this film inspired by countless true stories of individuals who have been put in the care of a guardian by the courts raising the question are these caretakers helpful or harmful? “Two For One” (TCM): Steven Spielberg presents two 1957 films that inspired him “Jailhouse Rock” starring Elvis Presley and “Forty Guns” with Barbara Stanwyck

May 19 – “The Equalizer” (CBS): Ends its fourth season on the heels of being renewed for a fifth. “The Simpsons” (Fox): Kerry Washington returns as the voice of Ms. Peyton for the season finale. 

May 20 – “Stax: Soulsville U.S.A.” (HBO): Tells the story of an underdog record label comprised of Black and white collaborators who ushered in the groundbreaking, industry-altering soul music of Otis Redding, Isaac Hayes, Booker T. & the M.G.’s, The Staple Singers Sam & Dave and many others that defined a generation. Driven by instinct and defying the notion that Black artists needed to be “made marketable,” the Memphis-based label went from ultimate outsider to one of the most influential producers of Black music — finding its place inside the broader mainstream record industry. 

May 21 – “Dune: Part Two” (MAX): The continuation of the epic adaptation of Frank Herbert’s acclaimed tome featuring one of the most immersive scenes this writer has seen on the big-screen this year comes to streaming. It features hot actors Timothée Chalamet, Zendaya, Josh Brolin, Austin Butler, Florence Pugh, Dave Bautista, Christopher Walken and Javier Bardem (who steals the picture from the aforementioned). “The Kelly Clarkson Show” (Syn): Alicia Keys, Michael McDonald, Paul ReiserTamron Hall” (Syn): Ta’Rhonda Jones “American Experience” (PBS): “The Riot Report,” co-written by New Yorker journalist Jelani Cobb, revisits 1967, when inner cities across America erupted in violence. President Lyndon B. Johnson appointed the Kerner Commission to investigate, and the commission’s final report would offer a shockingly unvarnished assessment of race relations that still resonates today.

May 22 – “The View” (ABC): Charlamagne Tha God “The Kelly Clarkson Show” (Syn): Patti LaBelle and Colombian singer Manuel Turizo perform. “Tamron Hall” (Syn): The cast of “Power Book II: Ghost” (Method Man, Naturi Naughton, Michael Rainey Jr., Golden Brooks) joins the “Tam Fam.” ‘It is also the finale night for Fox’s “The Masked Singer,” CBS’ “Survivor,” ABC’s “Jeopardy! Masters” & “Abbott Elementary,” NBC’s “Chicago” franchises, and Freeform’s “Grown-ish.”  

May 23 – “Evil” (Paramount+): A fourth and final season for the supernatural series starring Mike Colter (“Luke Cage”). “The Ms. Pat Show” (BET+): The raunchy Emmy nominated sitcom led by comedian Patricia Williams returns. “Tamron Hall” (Syn): MC Lyte “Don’t Forget The Lyrics” (Fox): Niecy Nash is back to host this musical game show with a top prize of $1 million. 

END QUOTE: “Power for me is ‘no.’ No is very powerful. Because if you’re always available — and this goes for relationships, too — just keep saying no. That’s when you know your worth, when you know your value. — TARAJI P. HENSON

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, via Twitter @tastyclips, or Instagram @tasty_clips.

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