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Archives for August 2011

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Harlem’s Cotton Club

I heard about the Cotton Club long before I moved to Harlem. It was one of the places I knew I wanted to see. But the Cotton Club I saw was not the one of legend.

The old club was located at 142nd Street and Lenox Avenue, the site of the Club De Luxe, which was owned by the black boxing champion, Jack Johnson. Owney Madden, a well-known mobster and bootlegger, bought the Club De Luxe in 1923 and renamed it the Cotton Club, an interesting name given the kind of clientele the establishment would serve.

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Last Minute Getaways for the Labor Day Weekend

It’s been a stressful past week in the Northeast. The Labor Day weekend, the unofficial end of summer beckons. You want to get away but with widespread damage from Irene, most beaches are closed and many of the usual area getaways are under water.

Can you still find affordable last minute getaways? Sure can.

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Happy Birthday, Michael!

Had Michael Jackson not met his untimely death two years ago, he would have been 53 years old today. How time flies!

Despite the controversy that dogged him, it never could overshadow his genius. Michael was the consummate performer, a hands-on perfectionist.

I grew up on Michael. One summer when I was still living in Jamaica, a few of my American cousins came home for holidays and brought the Jackson 5’s music with them. It was my introduction to Michael. I learned ABC and I Want You Back and sang them over and over.  From then on, I had to have every song the Jackson 5 sang.

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Goodbye, Irene

I woke up to glorious sunshine this morning. All that’s left of Irene, the latest hurricane to hit the east coast of the U.S., is the damage and the cleanup.

For a storm that massive that was predicted to pass over the New York area on Saturday evening as a Category 1 hurricane, we were very fortunate that Irene was downgraded to a tropical storm by the time it reached us. As a result, we had far less damage that what was anticipated.

There have been flooding, mostly in flood-prone areas, trees uprooted trees, power lines brought down and cut off electricity in some areas. There has also been some loss of life but thankfully, not as many as could have occurred if the storm had remained as strong as was forecasted.

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