Monday, February 27, 2012

Everyday Display

I see it all around, beauty in the regular, the routine, and the everyday occasion. I see it with the mother rushing to take her children to school, still in slippers. I saw it last week when a young mom was going over her son’s homework on the D Train here in NYC. The woman passing out samples in the food court at the mall, the older woman giving paper towels to the club goers in the restroom hoping someone will leave a tip.  The crossing guard, the woman receiving public assistance, and the woman on the other side of the desk giving it to her, dealing in compassion without disdain.  These are all examples of beauty blended in with the daily and commonplace.  I often look for the overlooked; I deem them just as important as those who are in the limelight.  My eye is trained for such things being an expert in beauty.   I applaud celebrity celebration when deserved, and honoring those who excel in their craft.  I also appreciate the ones who take the heart and nerve to celebrate those who will never flash across your television screen or newspaper article.  To dedicate ones art, craft, or even products with the everyday woman in mind sends a message of celebration of life in all forms. To revere, to display, to honor and hold valuable the bronze with the silver and gold in my opinion is very human, quite Godlike, and long overdue.

I’ve come across a young man who has decided to do just that, to bring the everyday woman to light, to hold her up to be lauded and appreciated.  Jermaine “Jay Everyday” Smith of New York, NY has released an Eau de Parfum called "Everyday" for Women.  It boasts a light, woodsy floral fragrance that beautifully blends Rose note with Amber, and other blended notes, which sits beautifully on the skin (my skin particularly J).  Last week, I attended the New York "Everyday" for Women Fragrance Smell Party at the Altus CafĂ©, which was well representative of Jay's influence along with business partner Radi Cartagena.  Women from all walks of life attended in anticipation of the perfume.  One could ask the question “Why would Jermaine, an American playwright, director, producer, and on air personality have any interest in the perfume business?  In answering that with sincerity, Mr. Smith spoke of the influential women in his life that inspired him, "Everyday" for Women pays homage to them in the most feminine way. With that explanation, it all made sense.  In honor of his mother who wrestled with drug addiction and won now being drug free, his aunts and grandmothers who helped to shape and mold him during his mother’s absence.  What a beautiful way to show women who do what they have to do without acknowledgement that they matter!  To honor women who bravely take care of their families and loved ones unsupported.  To applaud young ladies who strive to be better than what they’ve experienced in their childhood, exalting seasoned women who carry themselves with dignity and poise despite checkered pasts.  
Let fragrance be a gift to them, to let them walk the world emitting beauty and femininity in everyday situations, all the time.  "Everyday" for Women  in its message celebrates the un-celebrity, the regular lady, and the everyday woman in the most glorious way.  This in itself is true beauty, displayed everyday. 
Radi Cartagena, Jermaine "Jay Everyday" Smith with some "Everyday Ladies" at Altus Cafe
Shay RoZay, Tifini Lewis, Yesenia Aguirre at the Everyday for Women Fragrance Smell Party


"Everyday" for Women represented the “Everyday Woman” at the 84th Annual Academy Awards last night included in gift bags, along with this week at BET’s Rip the Runway.  You can purchase "Everyday" for Women at and fine retail shops nationwide.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

HoneyWine Official Music Video Premiere

To start off the week’s love festivities, I had the pleasure of attending the HoneyWine Official Music Video Premiere at the legendary Billie’s Black in Harlem USA.  Hosted by the prodigious vocalist Rajdulari, whose “Journey to the Grammy’s” movement is sweeping the country.  The lead voice for so many of New England’s eclectic world, jazz and funk groups, Rajdulari is a recent transplant to New York from Boston and is a veteran of the local performance scene.  I first met Rajdulari as co-host of The Jay Everyday Show in 2011 when she came on the show.  I’ve since had the pleasure of attending 2 live performances, and each time I’ve sincerely been wowed.  In-station, on wax, and in living color, Rajdulari delivers jazz styling reminiscent of Patti Austin and Phoebe Snow. Her personal poise and command however, are incomparably her own, and goddess like, if you will.   

Imagine the type of beauty you can only see by feeling first.  When closing your eyes, you let melodies paint pictures, while you begin to experience a level of art that leaves a check mark on all five senses.  The climax of it all is when you open your eyes, what you see confirms what you’ve just felt.  Rajdulari does just that, in music, and in person.  Appropriately attired in red, love skimming, curvy perfection, Rajdulari will occupy your visual appreciation.  In creating the HoneyWine video, she was clear on what she wanted to convey: “People rarely show the curvy girl as a love interest in media”.  With special guest, Terrell Carter as the object of her affection, she showed a love story that many American women can attest to.  Can beauty so easily be defined in a waistline number?   Certainly not.  I think it's pretty genius to use your platform to send an honest and clear message about what occurs in everyday living.   HoneyWine the video shows real love, fun love, supportive love, good love, and well, just love.  The song itself begins with a cavatina of Phoebe Snow’s “Poetry Man” and ends with an elixir of harmony, and devotion of true music for your fine music palette .  I promise you on the 6th or 7th time you hear the song, you will find yourself chanting “Huneeeee”.  I am doing it as I write. 

I am giving away 1 HoneyWine cd to the person to shares the best drink recipe in which they've creatively used honey. Winner will be announced next week. Stay tuned...

HoneyWine Official Video

HoneyWine available on,

HoneyWine Photo: 2012 Kevin P. Tyson Photography
HoneyWine Photo: 2012 Kevin P. Tyson Photography
HoneyWine Photo: 2012 Kevin P. Tyson Photography
HoneyWine Photo: 2012 Kevin P. Tyson Photography
HoneyWine Photo: 2012 Kevin P. Tyson Photography

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Love, Unexpected

I’m not going to solely come from the angle of this [holi]day, though I think love in its purest form, is at best, holy.  Today for some, is the annual anticipation of those who love to see it come, and those who love to see it go.  For the most part, we desire, and possibly seek after love moment by moment in some way, whether in thought or deed.  I have an inkling of perhaps why many haven’t found love.  I think it is because they are actually looking for it. What if love would be encountered when we no longer searched and sought, but allowed it to come unexpectedly?  The perfect marriage of that philos/eros love that make hard days easy, and heavy burdens light.  The kind that shows you what you’ve never seen till you seen it in the eyes of your beloved.  Shulamite type meet me at the banqueting table to feast off of your fruit while sitting in the shade of your tree type love. Clothed in your outfit of admiration type, it was good for me to have waited when I didn’t think you were ever coming type love.  Forgive my poetry, this is what I do while waiting for the unexpected.  While many plan and have romantic blueprints mapped out, I’d like to imagine it overtaking someone in the best way.  Taken over because they had no prior knowledge of who, what, when, or where. We know the why however, it’s because it’s deserving. 
When it comes to love in beauty and art, we dance about it, we write, paint and sing about it. It is the theme of many a great visionary. I thought it would be fitting to share a conversation I had with someone I feel may know a thing or two about this age-old topic. I sat down with Esnavi, singer/songwriter whose highly anticipated album Exit E is climbing the charts.  Her first radio single, Unexpected Love, has already reached the Top 40 on the Urban Adult Contemporary Charts.  Evident in her music, is the expression of the soul of love’s heartbeat, all tied into rhythms and melodies of real-life stories.

1. In my opinion, you are a creative whirlwind, a soulstress, and what I percieve to be a genuine person. What does Esnavi say about Esnavi? Thank you. Esnavi says that Esnavi is truly blessed.  She is a loving, genuine, loyal person.  A “do what she says” with a “do what it takes to get the job done” kind of girl.  Someone you can trust.  She also has a great sense of humor, which makes working with her fun.  She’s passionate about everything she does.  And she goes in 100% on all levels of her artistry. 

2. Can you attribute that to love you've had in your life, and not necessarily romantic? Yes.  The energy I put out is what I receive.  So I attract genuine loving people that are like-minded. 

3. Now, let’s get to the romance...Exit E your current project which is sweeping the airwaves, seems to be nothing but a love story presented in different ways.  Particularly "Unexpected Love", your current radio banger. What was your inspiration behind writing it? I was inspired to write about what I was experiencing at the time. When I wrote it, I was living in the moment of love with the person who became my ‘Unexpected Love’.

4. So did any of this come at a time you didn't foresee?  It's Valentines Day, encourage the single folk:) Yes, it did.  Completely out the blue sky.

5. Staying with the theme of love, describe Esnavi's heart in one sentence... My heart loves like its loved.

6. Random question: Do you wear red nail polish? Yes.  I actually wore a glittery red nail polish at my last show at the Apollo Theater in NYC this past MLK celebration.
You're obviously beautiful outwardly, but I appreciate you sharing with the readers your true beauty, from the inside out...Thank you.  And thank you for featuring me on your blog.  I appreciate it.

My heart in one sentence is “You are more than capable to receive love, to give love, to be love…” So let me give a little of my own.  I have for 1 lovely winner a prize package for their personal account of “Unexpected Love”. Tell me in 100 words or less how you’ve experienced love unexpectedly. It can be in essay or poetry form as we encourage all artistic expression. The winner will be announced next week.

The prize includes  an autographed CD of Esnavi’s Exit E, along with Dazzle Dry Quick Dry Nail System) in “Red Hot Chili” to spice up your anticipation for your Unexpected Love.  Visit to view the demo of their revolutionary nail care system.

EXIT E available NOW on ITUNES & Digital Stores Everywhere! 

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Expert Beauty

I am a beauty expert. I see what I see, I know what I know, and I interpret how I interpret. I share what I share, I believe what I believe, I perceive what I perceive, and I determine what I determine. I see beauty in flowers, in fruit, in couples holding hands unendingly. I see beauty in lipgloss, Shea butter, and Fendi boots. I am experienced in chocolate, precision haircutting and the art of perfectly moist carrot cake. I can spot a vintage coat in a crowd of millions, and recognize a piece from Bottega Veneta Cruise Collection from a mile away, while in the supermarket. I love red shoes, nude lips and colorful personalities. I applaud individuality, and encourage collective thought. I laugh, I cry, I occasionally use makeup shopping sprees as intensive therapy. I sing, I dance, I walk out of shoe stores fulfilled. I am an expert at life, because I live. I am an expert in beauty because my eyes behold. I share what I know, because you may not, or may need a reminder. I am a beauty expert, all things beauty, all things beautiful, all the time...   

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

23rd Annual African-American Read-In

     It was February 5, 2012, and walking across the York College campus in Queens, New York was nostalgic. It was my alma mater, and I hadn't visited in years. To be there that day, and for this event no less, was at best, fulfilling. The Read-In was sponsored by the Queens Chapter of the Links, a organization composed of of concerned business and professional African-American women who are dedicated to providing educational, civic and international activities throughout Queens NY. ( 
       Present to share their literary works was Cheryl Wills, award winning journalist for NY1 News. She authored Die Free: A Heroic Family Tale, a story about her great-great-great grandfather, Sandy Wills, a runaway slave who joined the fight for freedom in the Civil War. (
     Danny Simmons, visual artist and writer is co-founder of Rush Philanthropic Arts Foundation, and creator and co-executive producer of HBO's Def Poetry Jam. He's the author of Deep in Your Best Reflection, a short collection of poems written to his girlfriend while traveling abroad.  
     Terrie Williams of The Terrie Williams Agency, is one of Ebony Magazine's "Power 150" for Activism. She's an advocate for change and empowerment and founded the Stay Strong Foundation.  Her latest book entitled Black Pain: It Just Looks Like We're Not Hurting, recounts her personal struggles with depression and the impact of the stigma of mental illness in the African American community. (
Along with these notables reading excerpts from their books, there was a duet with author Denis Gray, and his wife Barbara. He sang a medley of negro spirituals while Mrs. Gray did an improv dance routine. The best part of the whole performance was when at the end, I realized Mrs. Gray was my second grade teacher:) Couldn't contain my excitement... 
     The event ended with a Poetry Slam. Gathered at the podium were local poets, most notably, Shirley "Liberatti" Touzin-Diarra from New York, NY. She performed her riveting "Mission Statement" which describes her very reason for being the sought after poet and vocal performer she is known as in the NY poetry and music circuit. ( With vociferace and eloquence, she certainly didn't disappoint and gained a new ear amongst seasoned dignitaries.

     I sitting there as a writer, was even more inspired to really use this pen platform as a means to share not only my experiences, but the experiences of those whose stories I know will impact others because of their honesty and transparency. We all come from a body of experiences, and are all connected. Whatever the means chosen to share, we must share as a duty. Whether it be 1 or 1000, we can positively affect another individual by sharing what's on the inside of us...