Archive for the ‘Miami News’ Category

9th Annual Jazz In The Gardens – Doing It Right

March 12, 2014 Leave a comment
9th Annual Jazz in the Gardens poster

9th Annual Jazz in the Gardens poster

The ninth installment of South Florida’s uber jazz festival dubbed “Jazz in the Gardens 9” gets on the way from March 15-16, 2014, on the grounds of the Sun Life Stadium in Miami Gardens, Florida.  In case, you have been hiding under a rock for the last eight years, Jazz in the Gardens (“JITG9”) was created by the former City of Miami Gardens Mayor Shirley Gibson.  Over the past eight years, JITG has been held as a two-day festival, but this year, the organizers  added the first annual opening night party featuring the 80s Dazz Band with the SOS Band, to  be held at Calder Casino & Race Course on March 14.  This musical extravaganza has grown to become highly regarded in comparison to its counterparts around the country, and is definitely a “must-see and must go” for music lovers both nationally and internationally, attracting some 63,000 fans in 2013. The JITG stage has been graced by some of the music world’s biggest icons  from across the globe.  With artists such as Jonathan Butler, Angelique Kidjo, KEM, O’Jays, Isley Brothers, Al Jarreau, George Duke, Common, Erykah Badu, Nancy Wilson, Kenny G, Stanley Clarke and Maze featuring Frankie Beverly (Clarke and Maze are both returning this year), so one could definitely say music fans were have been treated to a musical feast for the past eight years.  JITG9’s lineup of musical acts will satisfy the young at heart and the seasoned fan, who enjoys a little Soul, Hip Hop, R&B Classics and would even get down with some Adult Contemporary flavor.  The opening night party will reintroduced fans to the 80s hot shot bands, from Cleveland, Ohio’s Dazz Band (Let It Whip) to Atlanta’s very own SOS Band (Take Your Time – Do It Right), it should be a show with each band parading their hits, as both bands have had their fair share.  Saturday’s lineup will showcase the stylings of jazz man himself Boney James, R&B crooners Mint Condition, Trey Songz and Jamie Foxx and R&B goddess Kelly Rowland.  When Rachelle Ferrell, Stanley Clarke, Anthony Hamilton and LL COOL J hit the stage on Sunday, all of the fans on the grounds of the Sun Life Stadium will be blown away by the  musical diversity. But with all the saxophone, bass guitars and showmanship,  closing out Sunday night will be the incomparable, Maze featuring Frankie Beverly, who is also returning to JITG9 and whose existence and track record needs no further  introduction. With such hits as “Happy Feelings,” “Workin Together,” and “Lady of Magic,” this group who arrived on the scene in 1977 ha snot missed a beat since.  For the true JITG fan, the festival is not only about the music and the artists performing, JITG is about bringing  cultures together, it is about the foods, the friendships and the vibes.  JITG9 will bring together vendors and their culinary creations from vegetarian to BBQ, so bring your healthy appetite.  Every good music festival surely needs a great host, so for JITG9 comedian/actor D.L. Hughley signed on to be the Emcee.  Hughley will have some big shoes to fill as “Fly Jock” Tom Joyner and Michael Baisden brought their A game to JITG previously.  However, Hughley is no slouch, he is one of the four Original Kings of Comedy and has launched his own daily radio show – “The D.L. Hughley Show, which airs on Reach Media Network and done his own HBO special. Bring on the fun stuff – I know you will DL.

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March 5, 2010 Leave a comment

South Florida’s premier event producer, Fè Domenech, of Miami’s “The Event Firm” (TEF) has been nominated for the 2010 “Designer of the Year” Spotlight Award by the prestigious Event Solutions Magazine. Event Solutions Magazine has recognized top industry companies and professionals from all over the world since 1998. Fè Domenech has been nominated for this honorable award for six consecutive years, consistently proving to be an international top designer. In order to be nominated for the award, the designer has to demonstrate superb ability, creativity and achievement in the design of events and/or event décor. Since 2005, TEF has been a national leader in the event design industry, resulting in numerous honors for consistently creating cutting edge and spectacular designs. Among them are the 2008 ISES Award for Design and multiple recognitions for Service and Design in nationwide publications.

Domenech is the CEO and lead designer of The Event Firm, which is the go-to agency of the stars both in the corporate and entertainment world. Prestigious clients have all sought out the award-winning agency. Some of its clientele include: John Travolta, CitiGroup, UNIVISION, NASCAR, MTV, HBO, BMG, Louis Vuitton, Sony, NCR, The Agency, Dignitaries and many DMC companies. As a preferred designer for Nikki Beach South Beach, TEF recently produced the ‘New Year’s Eve Spectacular’ at Nikki Beach in St. Barts where Beyonce performed live. Some of the guests at this new year’s star-studded event were; Jay-z, Usher, Lindsay Lohan, Bon Jovi, and Todd English, to name a few. TEF has also produced the ‘Tropical Nights’ event for the University of Miami Autism Foundation at the Biltmore Hotel, the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation of South Florida’s 2009 Fashion Ball in the Fontainebleau Hotel, MARS for Moss Warner at The Harbor Beach Marriott, The Liberty Mutual soirée at Casa Casuarina, and the Operation Helmet Gala.

Event Solutions Magazine hosts The Spotlight Awards Event each year and brings top industry professionals together to network, celebrate and experience the newest in awards presentation strategies and events. Spotlight Award recipients will be announced at the Spotlight Awards Event at Event Solutions Conference & Trade Show in Las Vegas on March 8, 2010. “I’m honored to be a finalist as well as grateful to be able to do what I love as my career,” states Fè Domenech. “What greater gift can I ask for than creating ever lasting memories by transforming dreams into reality for my wonderful clients.”

Born in Cuba, raised in Minnesota and having lived in Chicago, Los Angeles, New York and Miami, Domenech not only has immaculate taste, but also has her finger on the pulse of up-and-coming design trends. The goal behind all of The Event Firms creations is to supersede any client’s dreams and expectations. This boutique agency works as a full-service production company for one-of-a-kind designs and includes in-house production capabilities such as, master carpenters, set designers, seamstresses, fine catering, film and video editing, culinary teams and event producers that are always ready to customize any soiree.

TEF plans to continue its growth and further develop its reputation as a trendsetter. Its ultimate goal for every event is to have its designs inspire recreation. For more information on the company please visit their website at:

Half Time With Pete Townend And The Who – Rock On!

February 5, 2010 Leave a comment

Rock on Dude! Legendary Rocker Pete Townsend of The Who has defended his choice to perform in Super Bowl half-time show, saying that he was saddened by critics who brought back his 2003 link to child pornography.
Townshend and singer Roger Daltrey performed three songs this week as a preview, but the guitarist reacted quite seriously, when asked about two groups that have criticized the NFL’s choice.
”I’ve been very saddened by it,” he said. ”I feel like we’re on the same side. That’s really all I can say.” Townshend was arrested in 2003 in Britain in a child pornography sting but later cleared, saying his accessing of a child pornography website was for his anti-porn activism. ”Anybody who has any doubts about if I should be here or not should investigate a little bit further,” he said. ”For a family that has suffered the issue of child abuse, vigilance is the most important thing, not vigilantism.”
Since an infamous ”wardrobe malfunction” exposed Janet Jackson’s breast six years ago, the NFL has had male headliners, a decision which at times raises a few brows of feminists like me. Sports and Music goes hand in hand at times when the pressures of life wears out down, and that is why, I am giving my thumbs up to The Who and Townsend. Let the good times roll – I say. Townshend and Daltrey will play for 12 minutes at half-time. ”I heard if you take out the advertising and all the breaks the game only lasts for 11½ minutes,” Daltrey said. ”We’re working longer than the players?” Townshend added. ”We should re-do our deal.”
Daltrey touted rugby to as gridiron ”without the breaks, padding and helmets and they get less injuries than the guys in the helmets. British guys are lighter.”

Jazz In The Gardens Music Festival Announces Their 2010 Headliners

December 10, 2009 1 comment

The City of Miami Gardens is pleased to announce the star-studded lineup for the 5th Annual “Jazz in the Gardens” hosted by #1 rated, nationally syndicated radio personality Tom Joyner, taking place on Saturday, March 20th and Sunday, March 21st at Dolphin (Landshark) Stadium, 2269 Dan Marino Blvd, Miami Gardens, Florida 33056.

Confirmed artists include the queen of R&B, Mary J. Blige; Grammy award-winning singer/songwriter, John Legend; R&B crooner, Robin Thicke; funk/R&B diva, Teena Marie; 90’s R&B/pop super group, Boyz II Men; Grammy nominated R&B vocalist, Melanie Fiona; jazz chanteuse, Cassandra Wilson; saxophone king, David Sanborn; already classic newcomer, K’Jon; and famed pianist, keyboarder and founding member of the Jazz Crusaders, Joe Sample. Local artist names will be released soon.

Jazz in the Gardens, a two-day weekend festival is now in its fifth year and has grown to be one of the top cultural events in America. The jazz festival delivers a diverse mix of music genres and mixes jazz, pop, R&B, Neo-soul and Caribbean flavors, having something to offer all music aficionados at an affordable price.

“I am proud to proclaim “Jazz in the Gardens” as an undeniable premier stop on the national festival circuit. With audiences coming from international and domestic markets, it has become a major destination event for anyone seeking the combined ambience of fabulous music, sunshine, great food, shopping and beautiful people all in one setting,” says Shirley Gibson, Mayor Miami Gardens.

The 4th Annual Jazz in the Gardens shattered expected ticket sales, enjoying an attendance of almost 40,000, more than double the sales of the 2008 festival. In 2009, the “Jazz in the Gardens” crowd enjoyed performances by Kenneth ‘Babyface’ Edmonds, Kenny G, Maze featuring Frankie Beverly, Erykah Badu, Common, Roy Ayers, Jonathan Butler, Will Downing, and Angelique Kidjo. This year’s line-up raises the bar yet again!

For more information on the highly-anticipated 5th Annual “Jazz in the Gardens” Hosted by Tom Joyner, go to or contact the City of Miami Gardens at 1-877-640-5299. All media inquiries should be directed to Circle of One Marketing at 305.576.3790.

The City of Miami Gardens was incorporated on May 13, 2003, as the 33rd city in Miami-Dade County. At a population of approximately 10,000, it is the third largest city in Miami-Dade County. Miami Gardens is a solid, working and middle class community of unique diversity. It is the largest predominantly African-American municipality in the State of Florida and boasts many Caribbean residents. In 2007, the City hosted the 41st annual Super Bowl. The City recently hosted the 2009 college BCS championship game and in 2010, will host the 44th Super Bowl.

For general information on the festival, visit or call the event hotline at: 305-622-8043. For vendor and sponsor opportunities, contact Vendor Express at 954-275-3092. All media inquiries should be directed to Circle of One Marketing at 305.576.3790.

Miami Dade Chamber of Commerce 2009 Distinguished Service Award

November 18, 2009 Leave a comment

The Miami Dade County Chamber of Commerce announces that the 2009 Distinguished Service Award will be awarded to the president of the Greater Miami Convention & Visitor’s Bureau, Bill Talbert. The Chamber by virtue of this award is recognizing Mr. Talbert for his demonstrated community leadership, sparked inspiration and his effort to spearhead a successful international effort – to drive unprecedented economic development in Miami’s hospitality and travel industry.

As President and CEO of the Greater Miami Convention and Visitors Bureau (GMCVB) for the past 10 years, and as Chief Operating Officer for the prior nine years, Bill Talbert has distinguished himself as a highly respected visitor industry and community leader. Talbert’s 19 years of experience at the GMCVB includes major accomplishments such as assisting with the passage of the Food and Beverage tax to fund GMCVB’s advertising budget, negotiating inter-local government funding agreements and preparing four successful Super Bowl bids and three Pow Wow bids.

In addition, Talbert has been professionally affiliated with several organizations such as Camillus House, the Hands of Miami Advisory Board, the Orange Bowl Committee, the South Florida Super Bowl Host Committee, the Florida International University School of Hospitality Management Executive Advisory Board, and the Greater Miami & the Beaches Hotel Association, among others.

A Profile Of The 2009 H.T. Smith Lifetime Achievement Award

November 18, 2009 Leave a comment

The Miami Dade Chamber of Commerce will present the H.T. Smith Lifetime Achievement Award for his extraordinary contributions in community leadership and philanthropic endeavors to local prominent attorney and community activist, Dr. Larry R. Handfield.

A Bethune-Cookman University alumnus, Dr. Larry R. Handfield has the distinction of being the namesake of their music building and new athletic training center, as well as being appointed as the Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the historically black college.

After his undergraduate education at Bethune-Cookman, Handfield attended the Howard University School of Law where he received a degree of Juris Doctor. Handfield, a Miami native, currently practices law as the head of The Handfield Law Firm and is proud to be the Chairman of the Police Oversight Board for the City of Miami whose responsibility is investigating police misconduct.

In addition, Dr. Handfield serves as the Chairman of the Board of the James E. Scott Community Association (JESCA), an organization famous for providing services that respond to the changing needs of underserved communities, as well as improving their quality of life.

Categories: Miami News

Chrisette Michele Sharing Her Dream And Its An “Epiphany”

May 8, 2009 Leave a comment

Its An Epiphany

Its An Epiphany

The 7th Annual Blue Cross Blue Shield of Florida Orange Bowl “Field of Dreams” Scholarship Benefit, which be held on May 8, 2009, at the Broward County Convention Center, will be the perfect back drop for the performance of Grammy Award winning sultry singer Chrisette Michele. So much so, because Michele’s sophomore album entitled “Epiphany” was released on May 5, 2009. Michele who has always enjoyed the cultural vibe, that a visit to South Florida brings, will surely be in sync and right at home with the Field of Dreams concept, as she has certainly been living out her dream as artist.

Grammy Award winner and Def Jam recording artist, Chrisette Michele, was born in Central Islip, New York to parents who were deacons in the local church. Growing up in the church gave her the foundation and creativity she needed for her debut album “I Am”. Michele is a glamorous and sultry singer who employs the styling of some of the great female vocalists, such as Sarah Vaughn, Jill Scott, Macy Gray, Erykah Badu, and Ella Fitzgerald. Her first nomination for a Grammy came in 2008 in the category of Best Female R&B Vocal Performance for “If I Have My Way.”

The song “Be Ok” earned Michele her first Grammy in the category of Best Urban/Alternative Performance. Some of her success was brought through by her collaboration with famous producers and artists such as Ne-Yo, Nas, Jay-Z and Kanye West for her debut album. The 26 year old Michele is a singer/songwriter/ composer who was signed to Def Jam Record by Antonio “L.A.” Reid, who told her he had “goose bumps” after the first time he heard her sing. “When Chrisette Michele enters a room,” said Mr. Reid, “the room becomes a better place.”

On this album, Michele seems set for something bigger, both artistically and commercially – a combination that starts with “Epiphany’s” title track, which is also the first single. Epiphany’ is a song about a girl who is fed up with her boyfriend and decides to take matters in her own hands. I love the hook, which is rather catchy and the lyrics has some realistic advice to women of all ages. Her voice is amazing and is truly blended with the musical arrangement setting up Epiphany to be a hit for the summer.

Chrisette will surely be ready to provide her South Florida fans with nothing less than a stellar performance. Michele was last here in Miami, when she performed at the 3rd Annual Miami Gardens Jazz In The Gardens Two-Day Music Festival. We all look forward to hearing the new song from her new album as well as her old.

“Everything is in place for one of the more successful, star-studded and meritorious group of honorees since the Field of Dreams began. This promises to be one of the premiere events of the season. Now part of the Orange Bowl Committee’s 75 year legacy, our Field of Dreams offers a can’t miss night of entertainment, recognition and the generous spirit of South Florida,” comments Antonia “Toni” Williams-Gary, Co Chair of the Blue Cross Blue Shield of Florida Orange Bowl Field of Dreams Committee.

“The Orange Bowl Committee is dedicated to giving back to the community especially as it pertains to youth academic and athletic programs,” says Lynn Washington, co-chair of the Blue Cross Blue Shield of Florida Orange Bowl Field of Dreams Committee. “We invite the public to join us as we celebrate America’s future leaders, and continue the OBC’s legacy of 75 years of making our community better.”

The Field of Dreams Scholarship Benefit is an annual Orange Bowl Committee event with a purpose of providing college scholarship funding for deserving high school seniors. The program has awarded individual scholarships, and contributed over $300,000 for African-American scholarships to organizations such as the Tom Joyner Foundation, The Thurgood Marshall Scholarship Fund, Florida Memorial University’s Athletic Scholarship Fund and the UNCF.

The Orange Bowl Committee is a not-for-profit, 330-member, primarily-volunteer organization. It is a self-sustaining, independent organization that supports and produces activities and events that enhance the image, economy and culture of South Florida. The Orange Bowl Festival features a year-round schedule of events culminating with the FedEx Orange Bowl on January 5, 2010. In 2013, the OBC will again double-host both the FedEx Orange Bowl and the BCS National Championship. Other OBC core events include the MetroPCS Orange Bowl Basketball Classic, Orange Bowl Youth Football Alliance, Orange Bowl International Tennis Championships and Orange Bowl Sailing Regatta Series.