Photo credit: Jake Scherm

 

Originating from Chicago, Illinois, Quis Wright aka Cuee, is a hip-hop artist in Lawrence, KS. He exhibits an energetic and fun, yet smooth and motivational edge to his style of music.

One of his most meaningful steps in his evolution, has been writing more openly about his sexuality and queerness when recording. As a transgender man, Cuee manages to carve a lane where gender identity and budding artistry blend. His voice transition was an additional lane to carve.

Drawing major influence from artists such as Chance The Rapper, Kanye West, and Jay Z one could see why his storytelling essence fuses with harmonic flows.

Cuee came from a musically based family that peaked passion for music as early as middle school. Cuee began to use lyrics as a platform to speak on life’s accomplishments in a way that’ll have you repeating hooks.

Tapping into his talents, Cuee released three consecutive mixtapes, “The Evolution Of Mixtape”, “Master’s Cap”, and “Shameless”.

Cuee released a new project titled, “Gospel”.

CUEE will perform LIVE this FRIDAY, DECEMBER 17th, in Chicago, @The Point (1565 N Milwaukee Ave., Chicago, IL 60622) with Brad Varsity, The Kid Fraze, Jared Jones and Joel Leoj!!!

21+
Doors at 7:30 PM
Proof of vaccination or negative COVID-19 test no more than 72 hours prior to the event is required for entry.
Face masks are required.

Cuee is hitting the road and would love to bring the ultimate experience to each city!!!

GO BANG! MAGAZINE: Please tell our readers how and when you first got started in Hip Hop. What attracted you to it and when you knew you wanted to pursue it professionally?

Cuee: I grew up in a home that listened to Hip-Hop/Rap, House, Gospel and R&B. I first got into Hip Hop when I was around 10 years old, after my stepfather introduced me to some of his favorite artists at his music shop. We would listen to artists like Jay Z, Rick Ross, and Twista – I wrote my first remix to Jay Z’s “Big Pimpin’” in like fifth grade. One of the biggest things that attracted me to Hip Hop was the culture’s embodiment of storytelling on these dope beats. I wanted to be able to take my story and turn it into songs people connected with through music.

I have so many passions and have worked in a variety of places, but I knew I wanted to pursue music professionally when I started performing, and navigating the music scene in Lawrence, KS. It felt like where I needed to be.

GO BANG! MAGAZINE: You were born Quis Wright in Chicago, but currently reside in Lawrence, KS. Why did you choose to relocate there and how would you describe your life in Chicago, in comparison to life in Kansas?

Cuee: I first came to Lawrence to attend The University of Kansas for college. I attended for my undergraduate and graduate degree programs before choosing to stay here to continue my music career. I would say, life in Lawrence is definitely different. It’s a huge college town and has a dope music community, so the opportunities are unique. I’ve found my place in Lawrence, my community and the support here is solid. Chicago will always be my roots. My home. I rep Chicago and I am so excited to be performing back home.

GO BANG! MAGAZINE: Congratulations! You recently transitioned from female to male. When did you know you wanted to transition? When did you actually transition? How did you gain the courage and confidence, and how has it affected your life?

Cuee: Now that I look back to my younger self, I was assigned an identity that was not me. All along, I knew who I was, but I didn’t have the tools to understand what I was experiencing or language to talk about it until later in life.

I started medically transitioning in 2019, but like I say in my song “I been me since the beginning.”

I have always been confident in who I am. Gaining the knowledge and community has just heightened that so much more.

GO BANG! MAGAZINE: Has your music changed or evolved, after your rebirth? If so, how?

Cuee: I think my music has evolved as I’ve grown as a man and an artist. Living in my truth, my purpose comes out in my writing and performance. Like I said, I am so confident in who I am, it is unmatched. I love my sound and the way my voice has changed. But most importantly, my music feels more me and that allows me to connect more to my fans through my story.

GO BANG! MAGAZINE: When it comes to your music, how are you involved in the process of writing verses, music, producing beats, recording, or video shoots?

Cuee: I’m all hands in when it comes to my music. It’s a collaborative effort when it comes to producing my beats, writing, recording and shooting videos. I have a group of people who I make beats with. I have folks I write with. I have a team that supports my video productions. I’m blessed with a supportive team around me. Sometimes, it just me and a notepad or my iPhone notes app, writing on the couch. That’s where I do some of my most authentic work.

GO BANG! MAGAZINE: : Have you noticed any change in the way that you are treated (negative or positive) from family, friends, the public or fans, since transitioning from female to male?

Cuee: This is a loaded question. Whew!
Answering this would require a conversation on power, patriarchy and racism. So yes, there have been changes in the way that I am treated and I’ve recognized where it comes from. Overall, I’ve receive an immense amount of support and I’m grateful for it.

GO BANG! MAGAZINE: You are and will be an inspiration to many in the entertainment industry, especially those in the Hip Hop community that may be afraid or hesitant to come out of the closet or even consider full-fledge transitioning. What advice would you give someone, who’s in the industry, that may struggle with this dilemma?

Cuee: Its amazing to watch artists like Lil Nas X and Demi Lavato and many others come out and proudly proclaim who they are and then put that into their art. My advice: It can be scary, but all we have is this one life and we have to claim our voice and moment in this time. There are people out there waiting to hear your story and would love to support an artist like you. Being who you are is freeing and finding chosen family (fans) feels like freedom.

GO BANG! MAGAZINE: When and where was your first performance after transitioning and how did the audience receive you?

Cuee: My first performance was in Lawrence, KS, at one of our largest venues – The Granada. It was Pride 2019 and hundreds of people in attendance. The audience was turned up! It was amazing!

Lawrence is a supportive community, a sanctuary even. It’s an honor for me to be on this journey, in that community.

GO BANG! MAGAZINE: How have other Hip Hop artist accepted you? Please describe if it has been a smooth or rough transition.

Cuee: I would say I have a lot of support from other artists. After coming out, many artists have been respectful in using my pronouns and addressing with respect. Nothing really changed in the circles I run in and I love it.

 

Photo credit:  Fally Ifani, I Heart Local Music



GO BANG! MAGAZINE: You have an upcoming show here in Chicago, on Friday, December 17th @Bourbon on Division Street. How would you describe your stage performance to new fans and what can they expect at the “Cuee the Experience” concert?

Cuee: The show has been moved to the Point, their sister venue. I would describe my stage performance to new fans as an experience. I like to move, shout and really get the crowd involved. My fans can expect a show! Many of my fans in Chicago have been bumping my music since my first tape…so now, it’s time for me to bring the energy to them on the stage.

GO BANG! MAGAZINE: If you had the opportunity to work with or perform with anyone in the world, who would it be?

Cuee: If I had the opportunity to work with or perform with anyone in the world, it would probably be like Missy Elliot, Chance the Rapper (performing), or Kanye. Their creativity and style is complimentary to mine and I think we would make a hit.

GO BANG! MAGAZINE: Go Bang! Magazine wishes you the best in your career and in your life. Is there anything that you would like to say to the public?

Cuee: Appreciate the wishes. Support goes a long way!

This world is still very violent towards people in the LGBTQ+ community. I hope that there’s a shift and push to change. Change systems, laws, and society’s hearts and minds towards folk. To my fellow trans community, I see you. I’m with you. I wish you keep creating and being.

Follow and support me on my journey – @cueemusic on all platforms

GO BANG! MAGAZINE: In conclusion, please tell our international readers what you are working on, what do you have planned for the future and when do you plan to tour again.

Cuee: I am currently working on a new album to be released 2022, along with a Summer tour, that I’ll announce in the Spring!



For touring updates visit my website: https://cueemusic.com/home

For music, follow me on Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/artist/5vuWUABfGvkUxib7zgMMc6?si=efzxgKBkSpCRk3w0LZprSA

You can follow Cuee on social media:
@cueemusic (Instagram)
@cueemusic (Twitter)
@cueemusic (Facebook)

PLEASE LEAVE YOUR COMMENTS BELOW IN THE COMMENTS SECTION




Pierre A. Evans is a freelance writer of Entertainment, Music, Art, Culture, Fashion and Current Events, and previously for SoulTrain.com, NDigo.com, ChicagoDefender.com, EmpireRadioMagazine.com, and UrbanMuseMag.com, an author, singer/songwriter, actor, model, poet, dancer, and DJ. He is also the Owner of Pinnacle Entertainment Productions and the Owner/Publisher of GO BANG! Magazine. Follow him on Facebook @Pierre Andre Evans, Twitter @Playerre, and on Instagram @Pierre_Andre_Evans.








 House music is the third largest music genre in the world!!!!

Here is the trailer.

https://vimeo.com/633808501

 

Black Harvest Film Festival will virtually stream The Woodstock of House November 13- December 2, 2021.

Streaming Ticket Info: 

https://watch.eventive.org/gsfc/play/6168922c7c7500030b0cfe7a

The documentary “The Woodstock of House”, a film that explores the origins of Chicago House music and its’ enduring worldwide appeal, featuring Chicago’s own The Chosen Few DJs, was selected for Chicago’s prestigious 2021 Black Harvest Film Festival and will screen in person on Thursday, November 11th @8pm and Friday, November 12th @8pm at the Gene Siskel Film Center, located in downtown Chicago!

On debut night, Thursday, November 11th, the audience will be blessed with live appearances by Writer/Director/Executive Producer/Producer Rodrick F. Wimberly, who will be joined by Tressa Epps, Executive Producer/Producer, Vonda Paige, Executive Producer/Producer, Steve Toles, Executive Producer/Producer and Senuwell Smith, Director

GENE SISKEL FILM CENTER WEBSITE: https://www.siskelfilmcenter.org/

164 N. State Street

312-846-2800 

 

MOVIE WEBSITEhttps://www.woodstockofhouse.com

 

TICKETS:  

https://gsfc.eventive.org/films/the-woodstock-of-house-61687f3ba8594300b3cc787d?fbclid=IwAR1cfNIt1BoBuNXsb736vVvLPhwIYW4wcVL-CYil6KFMe2Mw6wErU0b0v6Y

 

Here is the trailer.

  


This documentary details the triumph of a music genre that was attacked and nearly destroyed by mainstream America in the late 1970s for being too black, too Latin, and too gay.

It explores the music’s mutation, development, and re-birth by African American teenagers on the southside of Chicago in an underground culture of marginalized, largely homosexual nightclub constituents.

It is the untold story of the role of Chicago’s Chosen Few DJs in the creation of House music. It celebrates the enduring legacy of the annual Chosen Few Music Festival, dubbed the “Woodstock of House” that brings together more than 50,000 people of different races, ages, sexual orientations, and class together in an environment of unity, peace, and love.


TICKETS:https://gsfc.eventive.org/films/the-woodstock-of-house-61687f3ba8594300b3cc787d?fbclid=IwAR1cfNIt1BoBuNXsb736vVvLPhwIYW4wcVL-CYil6KFMe2Mw6wErU0b0v6Y

 

GO BANG! Magazine had the opportunity to meet the creative and production team behind THE WOODSTOCK OF HOUSE, as well as a few members of the cast. As a fellow lover of House music, it was an honor for me to be granted the opportunity to interview the creators and producers of this long-overdue documentary on the origins of House music.


Now, let’s get to know “THE WOODSTOCK OF HOUSE” posse…


RODRICK F. WIMBERLY
EXECUTIVE PRODUCER/PRODUCER/DIRECTOR/WRITER
A veteran of the film and television industry, Rodrick’s love for the film industry is enhanced by his knowledge of the law regarding the business of film, including contract negotiations, corporate formations and business entities. He is an executive producer, producer, writer and a director for the documentary, “The Woodstock of House” (2020) and produced the short film, “UH-OH” (2018).

 


SENUWELL SMITH
DIRECTOR
An actor, screenwriter, editor and director, he appeared in the Blind Faith Theatre Company’s production of “Streamers,” for which he was nominated for a Black Theater Alliance Award. He appeared in “Pullman Porter Blues” at the Goodman Theater in 2013. He has directed and edited several music videos. He wrote and directed the short film, “UH-OH” which was screened at the Pan-African Film Festival and the Roxbury International Film Festival in 2018. He is a director for the documentary, “The Woodstock of House” (2020).

 


VONDA PAIGE
EXECUTIVE PRODUCER/PRODUCER
She has more than 25 years of experience in non-profit management, marketing, social media and public relations. She is an award-winning journalist and the founder of The First Black Woman, a digital media project recognizing the historic contributions of Black women. She is a life member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority and Vice President of the Virginia Tech Black Alumni Society. She is the executive producer of the independent short film, “UH-OH” (2018) which was selected by the Pan African Film Festival.

 


TRESSA EPPS
EXECUTIVE PRODUCER/PRODUCER
A sought-after independent filmmaker, Tressa has worked on a number of award-winning independent film projects, ranging from independent short films to feature films in a variety of roles as an executive producer, producer, and production designer. Her projects were released in theaters and aired on BET, BET HER, TVOne, Urban Movie Channel (UMC), Bounce TV and Netflix. She is honored to serve on the prestigious Black Perspectives Committee at the Chicago International Film Festival.

 


STEVE TOLES
EXECUTIVE PRODUCER/PRODUCER
After graduating from The Ohio State University, Steve moved to Houston and resumed a lifelong passion for film production, acting, directing and producing various projects from short films, to experimental music videos to documentaries and features. Eventually he returned to Cleveland where he has produced video content for his school and his first independent film was accepted to several film festivals. Steve is an executive producer and producer on The Woodstock of House.

 


WAYNE WILLIAMS
EXECUTIVE PRODUCER
As founder of the Chosen Few DJs and longtime music industry professional, Wayne has helped shape popular music and dance culture. His music career includes work as a DJ, producer, and A&R executive with Trax Records, Jive Records, and RCA Records. Wayne is a recipient of an NAACP Image Award for his work with Aretha Franklin and was nominated for a GRAMMY award in 2014 for his work with Jennifer Hudson. He continues to produce music and perform at event and clubs across the globe.

 


JESSE SAUNDERS
EXECUTIVE PRODUCER
Jesse is a founding member of the Chosen Few DJs who is recognized as the producer and performer of the first Chicago House Music record, “On & On”, in 1984. His production credits include “Love Can’t Turn Around”, one of the biggest-selling House Music records of all time, and “Higher”, which reached the top of the Billboard dance chart in 2019. In 2020, his book, “In Their Own Words”, which features interviews with House Music DJs, producers, dancers, club owners, and promoters, debuted at #1 on Amazon’s dance music book chart.



Knowing many of those involved in the film was the icing on the cake. I am so proud of them. Many of them are also my high school brothers and sisters, who attended “Thee” Kenwood Academy high school, located on Chicago’s south side, in the eclectic neighborhood of Hyde Park.


GO BANG! MAGAZINE:  (RODRICK) For our readers who may not be familiar with you, can you please explain how you are connected to House music culture and what inspired you to Write, Direct, Produce and Executive Produce The Woodstock of House?

Rodrick:  I was born and raised on the south side of Chicago (SOUTHSIDE!!!)  When I was around 12 years old, I first remembered hearing “Mickey Oliver” Hot Mixes on 102.7 WBMX (the radio station that every young person in Chicago listened to at the time-reportedly 2 million Chicago land residents used to listen to the Friday and Saturday mix shows).  The frenetic energy, pulsing rhythms  and driving bass captured me and I said that I had to become a DJ!  I bought my first turntables (Technics SLB-100 belt driven) from Loop Electronics from downtown and became the best unknown DJ in my area. LOL!  After I went to college at Boston University, I took my equipment up there and DJ’d there for two years introducing them to Chicago-style house music and deep disco (which they were not used to).  In addition to DJing, I LOVE to dance.  In fact, some people used to call me the “dancing DJ” because no one dance more to my music than I would! 

My inspiration for “The Woodstock of House” was the manifestation of the themes that House Music promoted: love, unity and sharing being manifested every year at The Chosen Few Music Festival (“The Picnic”).  To see mostly black and brown people in a crowd of 40,000 house music lovers come together in a communal celebration of everything that is good about humanity without ANY violence in 30 years was worthy of a film.  I gathered my production team, created a treatment for the documentary, met with the Chosen Few and they were in!  We wanted to share this human story of young black teens from the Southside of Chicago creating a musical genre that is the 3rd largest musical genre in the world! 

GO BANG! MAGAZINE:  (SENUWELL)   Being one of the directors of the film, alongside Rodrick Wimberly, can you please explain what is the purpose or mission of The Woodstock of House?

Senuwell:  My purpose is to create a new movement in music that will unite everyone of all races, ages and genders, like the influence of Rap and Hip Hop.  Eventually going global and creating a voice to bring peace and love back into a world of violence and hate.

GO BANG! MAGAZINE:  (VONDA, TRESSA, STEVE,)    As executive producers and producers of The Woodstock of House, what was it about the film that inspired or motivated you to become involved?

Vonda: As a filmmaker, not only can you entertain, but you have an opportunity to inform or educate, depending on the subject. I didn’t grow up knowing anything about House music – I can tell you about Go-Go, living outside of Washington, DC – but not House!

When we were thinking about debut projects for our company, and Rodrick and Senuwell shared
stories about and their love for House music, I was genuinely curious about what draws tens of
thousands of people to a music festival featuring something I had never heard of. Early on, while  doing some research for the project, I thought wow… we have a chance to tell an untold story and that was truly exciting!

One thing about making a documentary is that you may start with an idea of what you think the story is about, but if you are true and authentic to the craft – you let the story give you the direction.  While the story may have initially centered around the annual House music festival, I am so proud that we were able to tell an inspiring history story about young Black teenagers from Chicago who created a special sound and form of music that sustains some 30 years later. Black creators across all spectrums don’t always get their credit in the history books. Remember the late Little Richard, who famously said “They didn’t give me nothing!” Well, we produced a film that documents these genius black creators and the love that has come their way from a grateful fan base in Chicago and worldwide. This film is one for the history books.

Tressa: Woodstock of House” was the well-written treatment written by Rodrick Wimberly and Ayanna Wimberly. The treatment provided the blueprint of promoting a conversation about celebrating young Black teens who created a music genre and created “The Annual Chosen Few House Picnic” every 4th of July. I was particularly fascinated with the historical similarities House music had with disco music. In addition, House music is empowering and created a dance movement. The Chosen Few created an event about love, peace, and unity without any violence. 

Steve:  Well, as far as what inspired me, I remember Rod asking me to come to the picnic for a few years.  He had introduced me to the music and how to DJ, so he knew I would love the picnic.  Finally, he convinced me and I came out…not to mention that it was the 25th Anniversary picnic.  WOW!!!! I had recently directed/produced my first short film, so I looked at Rod and said “Rod we have to make this documentary.  It would be amazing”.  From there, we started on the long journey that eventually became The Woodstock of House.   

So, the idea that inspired me to bring this film to life was the music and the life it has given me.  Now, this is my opportunity to give something back to House.

GO BANG! MAGAZINE: (WAYNE)  What influence or effect do you think the film will have on society as a whole?

Wayne:  I hope the impact of the film is how the type of music we chose to impact our life, that grew to reach people all over the world, roots came from love, unity and freedom of art. Our music put smiles on people’s face and takes your stress away for that time when you are in House music. The world has been traumatized in the last  three years and has become meaner. Our music, House music, is the kryptonite of stress and depression and we have to get back to love, which is what House music is about.

GO BANG! MAGAZINE: (JESSE) Being the first person to have a House music song pressed on vinyl (“On and On”), as well as being a member of The Chosen Few DJs, which are featured in The Woodstock of House, how does it feel to be a member of a DJ crew that is considered to be part of the
foundation and continuation of the House music genre?

Jesse:  I’ve grown up originating and pioneering a culture that was new and different than anything prior to it. That means that my perspective is different than most peoples.  It all happened around me. I didn’t get the privilege of being able to look at something grow, because I was too busy trying to move and build the movement.. It turned out to be bigger than I could have ever
imagined.

My legacy with the Chosen Few is as dear to me as apple pie is to America. The walls that we
have been able to break down as a crew, that have bridged the gap between racism, sexism and
sexual orientation, have been immense. We’ve been able to bring everyone together to show that
we can love, dance and assemble as one – anywhere, anytime.

Personally, I’m proud to have started a revolution that allowed young, urban Black kids to DJ,
produce and release their musical expressions to the world…thus creating a world-wide culture
we now know as House music!

GO BANG! MAGAZINE:  (RODRICK). As a Chicago native, who was there when House music was born and participated in its growth and evolution, I am proud that this film has been written and produced to show the international community how House all started.  Then, to have The Woodstock of House to be selected for Chicago’s prestigious Black Harvest Film Festival, as well as recently winning Best Documentary in Gary Indiana’s Black Film Festival must have made you feel some type of way.  Please explain to our readers how gaining all of this attention, support and accolades make you feel.

Rodrick:   It has truly been a blessing!  It is exhilarating to play the film for house music and documentary lovers after taking six (6) years to complete.  We were rejected by so many film festivals early on so we just were overwhelmed by the love that we received from the audience and programmers at the Gary Black International Film Festival and the exposure that we are now receiving from film festivals all over the country (we have even had programmers from Europe approach us and request to exhibit the film).  It has almost been unbelievable but we had faith in each other, our project and God and He always has the last say.

GO BANG! MAGAZINE:  (VONDA, TRESSA) I am so proud to see two Black women being a part of The Woodstock of House production, especially serving as members of the executive producer AND producer team.  You both have an impressive, professional background and years of experience.  Can you explain why it is important to you to have minority, female representation in the film industry?

Vonda: It’s an incredibly exciting time for Black women filmmakers. There have always been Black women creating amazing film projects, in front of and behind the camera.  I think in the last decade – more media attention has elevated their work. I’m thinking of my personal shero, Ava Duvernay, who after becoming the first Black woman to the win the directing award at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival for her second feature film “Middle of Nowhere”, has blazed a trail with development deals that allow her to hire other women producers, writers and directors in film and television. That is how you ensure representation. American cinema can reflect everyday life, culture, politics, music, education, etc. – and Black women contribute to all of those things. We have a unique prospective and imprint and our voices, experiences and stories should be told by us.

Tressa:  Thank you for your acknowledgment. Black filmmakers are underrepresented in executive decision-making roles throughout the industry. The film industry in particular remains disproportionately white. This underrepresentation extends to the buying side, where Black distributors make up a small fraction of the total. Most of the productions I’m part of are lead by directors and producers who intentionally choose female department heads. Having females in these positions are important so our voices are represented. 

GO BANG! MAGAZINE:  (RODRICK, WAYNE, JESSE)   House is more than a genre of music.  It is a mentality of peacefulness, freedom of expression, love and acceptance.  If the founding generation of House music, which are us, does not pass the music and the DJ skills to the next generation, House could be lost.  How do you feel about the future of House music and what is its’ legacy?

Rodrick:  That was a major theme that was part of the initial treatment from the film and is a serious issue within the House Music community.  We, as House Music cultivators and curators, must introduce more young people to the Chicago and soulful style of house music that advances these altruistic societal values.  While some subgenres of House have captured the imagination of younger fans by advancing the driving energy of mostly instrumental music, like EDM, we must make it a point to elevate our sound as a cultural musical expression that has sociological implications to break down barriers between peoples and even nations.  That is truly worth educating young people about.  

Wayne:  House music started in 1984 and has been going ever since.  It has never been in jeopardy of not continuing  because there are too many people of talent  who are constantly discovering House music who are producers, DJs, songwriters and artists.

Jesse:  The future for the culture of House is as broad and diverse as has been for the last 45+ years. The culture of love, understanding and freedom has been a part of our American heritage since the American Revolution 350 years ago. We ALL want freedom to be who we want to be, love who and how we want to and dance the night away. House music breeds that and is the flag that we carry throughout our time on this earth. So the future of House is bright and shiny and will forever live in the hearts of generations to come.

GO BANG! MAGAZINE:  (VONDA)   Please introduce our readers to 2CHI Entertainment and explain what’s its mission.

Vonda:  2CHi Entertainment was founded in 2013 with the mission to produce movie and television projects that tell stories of the Black experience. Black production companies are vastly underrepresented within the film industry. We want to close that gap with stories that reflect the contributions of African-Americans to society on film in all genres: drama, science fiction, suspense, comedy, biography.

Our first project was a suspense thriller short film, called Uh-Oh, that was screened at the Pan-African Film Festival and the Roxbury Film Festival in 2018. We have projects in development including one about the historical contribution of Blacks in the military, a faith-based inspirational drama, and a family film that gives a slice-of-life view of a Chicago family.

GO BANG! MAGAZINE:  (STEVE, TRESSA)   In your opinion, what do you hope the “take away” is for the audience, after viewing The Woodstock of House?

Steve:  What I would hope the audience, especially the Chicago audience, “take away” is, is what this music is.  What we as a people can do over and over and over.   (We can) take bits and pieces of this and that and create something that will move the entire globe.  We do it under the most trying of circumstances, almost as a survival mechanism.  That ……and the music……is about LOVE.

Tressa: I hope the take away for the viewer is a reflection of the importance of unity, peace, and love.
Music is an universal language! Smiling and laughter creates great vibes! We can always add to our own personal happy! “House Music All Night Long!” 

GO BANG! Magazine would like to congratulate and thank you and the entire production team of The Woodstock of House, for writing and producing this informative, entertaining, powerful and much-needed documentary about another style of music that was born in Chicago, IL, USA….. HOUSE MUSIC!  What would you like to say “Mr. Writer” to leave with our international audience about the film, House culture, the future of House or anything else?

Rodrick:  Thanks so much for your kind words and for allowing us to share our story in such a great publication.  I just want to thank my amazing production team for their skill, excellence, character and patience in bringing this love project to life.  We became a family during this project and I love every one of them!

GO BANG! Magazine:  You are more than welcome Rod…thank you for bringing the truth about House, from the home of House, to the world!  

HOUSE MUSIC IS MY LIFE….ALL NIGHT LONG!

GO BANG!!!

Here is the trailer.

 

Black Harvest Film Festival will virtually stream The Woodstock of House November 13- December 2, 2021.

Streaming Ticket Info:

https://watch.eventive.org/gsfc/play/6168922c7c7500030b0cfe7a

 

THE WOODSTOCK OF HOUSE

Thursday, November 11th @8pm & Friday, November 12th @8pm

On debut night, Thursday, November 11th, the audience will be blessed with a live appearances by Writer/Director/Executive Producer/Producer Rodrick F. Wimberly, who will be joined by Tressa Epps, Executive Producer/Producer, Vonda Paige, Executive Producer/Producer, Steve Toles, Executive Producer/Producer and Senuwell Smith, Director

TICKETS:  

https://gsfc.eventive.org/films/the-woodstock-of-house-61687f3ba8594300b3cc787d?fbclid=IwAR1cfNIt1BoBuNXsb736vVvLPhwIYW4wcVL-CYil6KFMe2Mw6wErU0b0v6Y

You can find out more information about THE WOODSTOCK OF HOUSE on all social media platforms:

 

Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/woodstockofhouse

@woodstockofhouse

Instagram:https://www.instagram.com/thewoodstockofhouse

@thewoodstockofhouse

Twitter: https://twitter.com/WoodstockHouse2

@woodstockHouse2

 

PLEASE LEAVE YOUR COMMENTS BELOW IN THE COMMENTS SECTION

 

Pierre A. Evans is a freelance writer of Entertainment, Music, Art, Culture, Fashion and Current Events, and previously for SoulTrain.com, NDigo.com, ChicagoDefender.com, EmpireRadioMagazine.com, and UrbanMuseMag.com, an author, singer/songwriter, actor, model, poet, dancer, and DJ. He is also the Owner of Pinnacle Entertainment Productions and the Owner/Publisher of GO BANG! Magazine. Follow him on Facebook @Pierre Andre Evans, Twitter @Playerre, and on Instagram @Pierre_Andre_Evans.

Phote credit: Power Quevedo 

 

Julius the Mad Thinker (JtMT) is a dynamic producer and must-see international DJ talent. Since the age of 17, Julius has worn many hats while distinguishing himself in the dance music industry. He is a true visionary with infectious energy and amazing music.

In 2009, Julius and business partner Jenn Hurst bridged DJ entertainment with unique travel concepts to co-found MCH (Mi Casa Holiday – www.micasaholiday.com).

In 2012, MCH achieved sold-out status, and since has evolved into the most exciting travel and music community in the US.

In 2017, Julius produced his debut album “Perspective.” It has been described as “an album of epic tunes for the dance floor, ranging from soulful vocals, deep to the classic Chicago sound. A wide array of variety and substance”- Osunlade”

Julius’ reputation for uniting music communities and launching premiere DJ music events has attracted worldwide acceptance and respect as well. His most recent event production to gain international awareness is Mi Casa Holiday (MCH).

He is also affiliated with YourPassion1st. It is an international coaching & mentorship platform focused on helping under-resourced young adults overcome adversity and earn money in the area of their passion.

Through art, music, entertainment, sports, and culinary, YourPassion1st envisions a world where all young adults are inspired to find, define, and follow their passion into the workforce. Young adults in under-resourced communities are challenged in achieving their dreams due to a lack of resources, support, and inspiration. We help young adults succeed through project-based learning, as they learn their value, build their confidence and recognize their innovative instincts and hidden talents.

Our Workforce Readiness Workshops, Festivals, & Events are transformative, collaborative, and entertaining, while our podcast series captivates listeners. You’ll hear a cross-pollination of fresh perspectives, layered with empowering stories from industry leaders and everyday people who have overcome adversity to follow their passion. Ultimately, we believe that inspiring young adults will cause a ripple effect, transforming families and improving communities, while influencing the next generation of youth. Your support helps create life-changing experiences.

Stay tuned and be ready to experience the next wave of JtMT!

GO BANG! Magazine: Where were you born and raised and call home?

JtMT: Elgin, IL, but I consider Chicago my home, as I’ve lived in the city since 1993.

GO BANG! Magazine: How did you first get involved in music and when did you know that you wanted to be a DJ / Producer?

JtMT: My music Journey started as a kid helping my mom clean the house every Saturday listening to soul music on a big stereo/record system with disco lights in the speakers (lol).

However, the broader story is that I was bored in the suburbs, so I bet my cousin that I could get 500 people to go to a party at my house. I figured that there were at least 500 people in a town of 80,000 that were bored like me.  So after pleading with my mom, she finally let me throw a party under two conditions.  One, I had to write a business plan and two, if I were to make any money, I promised to give spending money to my sister for her (high school) senior trip to Puerto Vallarta, Mexico.  So, I wrote the business plan, was able to get 605 people to the party, and was able to give my sister $500 for her trip to Mexico.

My sister went to Mexico, had the time of her life, then came back and eventually convinced the company who set up her trip (IS Tours formerly USA Student Travel) to hire her on as the youngest student organizer in that company’s history at the time. I went on throwing parties, and along the way started to disagree with the order of songs that our DJ (DJ Beauty) was playing. I became persistent and kept asking him to try, (DJing) until August of ‘94 when I was finally able to sync the beats successfully. The record was Joey Bertram’s “Energy Flash” and I’ll never forget that feeling, and how it inspired me to want more.

So, my sister had 20 + years of travel and hospitality and I had 20 + years of DJing and event production, when in October of 2009, we merged both concepts to create Mi Casa Holiday Travel and Music’s Community & Boutique Events Service.  Along the way I always tried to stay ahead of the curve which led me to start producing music and music videos and then eventually an album in 2017. (Perspective)

GO BANG! Magazine: Why did you name yourself “The Mad Thinker” and how would you describe your sound?

JtMT: Actually, I didn’t name myself. I was a creative director and executive producer of a local hip-hop group named the Rec Center, and we were deciding on producing our first music video for our album “Lonely People”. There were 10 MC’s, our main producer, my brother from another mother, DJ Emmaculate, and I. Everyone described their ideas about what the video should be, and I was the last person to speak. After I laid out my vision, it was total silence when “Luck” (MC Bad Luck) in a soft spoken voice said, “the Mad Thinker” (www.themadthinker.com). It felt right, so I embraced it!

I refer to my sound as Global Soul House music. Afro Cuban rhythms meet Electronic sounds through a rollercoaster of emotions.

GO BANG! Magazine: In addition to being an international producer/DJ, you are also a businessman. Please tell our readers about your music & travel event known as Mi Casa Holiday (MCH).

JtMT: Family, Music, Paradise…We curate, and you celebrate! Ultimately, MCH (https://www.instagram.com/micasaholiday) is your personal holiday with the best music, entertainment and the coolest, most inspiring people from around the world. The name Mi Casa Es Su Casa (My house is your house) was a reflection of my sister and I’s diverse upbringing, and holiday is a reminder that taking time for yourself is mandatory, hence…Mi Casa Holiday. The MCH concept was an extension of 3Degrees Global, a previous groundbreaking event and promotional network founded in Chicago (1999). If the world was supposedly separated by 6 people, then we believed that like-minded individuals had to be separated by only 3 people. 3Degrees was Friendster, Myspace, Facebook before their time and we used the concept to bridge the Chicago House music scene each Wednesday from October of 1999 -2007, and we still produce special events to this day.

That event grew so fast that in addition to our weekly Wednesdays, we started producing monthly events in San Francisco, New York & DC, and also big holiday tour events. However, there was one 3Degrees event concept l that we never executed, and it was called the Global House Project. The idea was to take our community to an exotic location. After years of frustration with the unwillingness of nightclubs to invest in new talent, decorations, to sound, to renovations, the fragmentation of the winter music conference, friends and I traveling around the world to hang out, meeting other artists and promoters who were looking to do something new and fresh, and my sister’s annual plead to do a travel event, it all led to producing a weekend in Playa Del Carmen, Mexico in October 2009. Since then, we’ve produced MCH events in Costa Rica, Cuba, US & Mexico. Everyone should experience MCH and Rediscover Amazing!

GO BANG! Magazine: You are also part of an international coaching & mentoring platform known as YourPassion1st. Explain what it is and why you are a part of it.

JtMT: YourPassion1st is an international coaching and mentoring program that inspires young adults to overcome adversity and through art, music, entertainment, sports, and culinary, empowers them to follow their passion as an entrepreneur or leverage their skills to excel in the marketplace.

During the pandemic we decided to produce a live virtual event like many others. However, I will never just do something for the sake of doing it. Therefore, we took our event production hats off and put our tv network hats on and envisioned a week long, 24hr/day cable channel where Mi Casa Holidayers from across the world could display their passions, talents, and most importantly connect at such an important time. I was incredibly excited about this idea because we were essentially building a new product, but something was holding us back. We realized that we had yet to identify a cause that resonated with our idea, when one day, a post came across my Instagram feed that read YourPassion1st. Instantly I was like wow, there is a nonprofit based on passion. This can’t be real. It touched me for a few reasons.

First, the one rule in our household growing up was that we had to have passion for whatever we decided to do. Second, their approach made so much sense. As opposed to force feeding young adults a specific path, instead meet them where they are most interested and equip them with the tools to develop their skill set and inspire them to follow their passion. Third, through MCH, we created an event called Exprésate (express yourself), which targeted young adults to showcase their talents, from Dance, Art, music, skateboarding, murals, fire dancers whatever…. Lastly, through entertainment, young adults have shown us how they’ve influenced the older generations, and through my involvement I’ve learned quite a bit about near peer influence which is about young adults impacting the next generation.

So, after meeting the founder Chris Thomas, we seamlessly integrated his workforce readiness music festival vision into our MCH virtual event, and the MCH community helped to raise over 10k for the YourPassion1st organization. I was incredibly inspired after the live event, where there were 150 content contributors from 19 countries where we generated over 25,000 streams. After the event, I got involved and helped redesign the program, along with the addition of integrating young adults from Brazil and South Africa. This year, our program participants are producing 5 events that will air during the 2nd annual MCH Virtual Weekend + Workforce Readiness Music Festival November 10-17. (https://www.yourpassion1st.com/)

GO BANG! Magazine: Over the years, you have had the opportunity to perform with numerous well-known DJs and talent. Is there anyone or any event in particular that stands out as one of your most memorable?

JtMT: There are so many, however, I’ll never forget Keven Saunderson booking me to play the main stage at Detroit Electronic Music Festival thanks to my friend Monica Lockett.  Or when my friends Priti, Monna, the 3Degrees crew & the late great Frankie Knuckles surprised me and he played with me on my birthday.  Or when Lil Louis personally called me to book me for his CPR event in Chicago, the first time that I ever played in New York through Body & Soul’s John Davis, and Blaze’s (Josh Milan & Kevin Hedge) came to hear me and were dancing all night.  Playing all night with one of my favorite DJ’s of all time, Louie Vega at Cielo, all of the late night Mi Casa Holiday Mexico sets (starting at 4:20am).  Sharing the bill with legends like the last Paul Johnson, Terry Hunter, Tony Touch, Joe Claussell, Derrick Carter, Mark Farina, Dixon, and Heather.  The time I played the same club in the Philippines as Tiesto, but more interesting than that, playing on this insane sound system for my good friend Christopher Andrew’s destination wedding, and the first person on the dance floor was Tiesto.  Or the event that really catapulted my name around the world, when Large Music’s Jeff Craven asked me to open the main room for Large Music’s first ever Winter Music Conference event in Miami with Dennis Ferrer, Kerri Chandler, Jask & Roy Davis Jr, and asked me to also wanted me to close the back room which ended up getting me to New York and then later around the world.

I’ve been blessed and I feel like my schedule is about to get hectic as I still get the same responses that I was getting 20 years ago, which is people asking me “how do I not know about you, and where can I get more?!”

GO BANG! Magazine: Just recently in August, 2021, we have lost a few prominent DJs due to Covid and other health issues. Many of us haven’t had the time to even grieve. Did you know any of these DJs and how has their deaths affected you.

JtMT: I’m still processing all of them, especially my friend’s DJ Paul Johnson (Chicago), and my friend Reese (Miami). They both had so much spirit, it’s hard to believe. Unfortunately, there have been many amazing friends who were taken too soon like my friends Voodoo Ray (NYC) & Kweston (Chicago) pre-pandemic.  I’m less affected about how they all passed, rather the fact that they’re no longer physically here. I think when someone has impacted you, it’s your responsibility to help live out their legacy in the way that they inspired you, so that is what I am doing. I believe that It’s important to understand that no day is promised. Therefore, live your life to the fullest, open your heart and open your mind in a world that thrives off of friction.

GO BANG! Magazine: How are you dealing with the Covid pandemic, pre-vaccine time and post-vaccine times, and how has it affected you or your business?

JtMT: I’ve vowed to not lose any friends regardless of where they stand. It’s disheartening to see so many people pointing their fingers at others when they don’t know nearly as much as they think they do. Especially when they are pointing fingers at people who have previously and consistently brought joy into their lives. It’s sad. The world is made up of complicated issues, and I hope the dance, music, and arts community will be strong enough to respect one another’s journeys and conclusions versus pointing fingers or worse, supporting segregation. Yes segregation, because that is exactly what’s coming if people don’t get their acts together. Art, Dance, music, comedy, it’s up to us to be strong and open. If we can’t come together, then it’s a wrap.

GO BANG! Magazine: Where do you see yourself 10 years from now?

JtMT: Traveling around the world inspiring people.

GO BANG! Magazine: If you weren’t a DJ/Producer/Businessman, what would you be doing?

JtMT: Probably a consultant and/or motivational speaker.

You an follow Julius The Mad Thinker on ALL social media;

@juliustmt

@micasaholiday

@yourpassion1st

 

 


Pierre A. Evans is a freelance writer of Entertainment, Music, Art, Culture, Fashion and Current Events, and previously for SoulTrain.com, NDigo.com, ChicagoDefender.com, EmpireRadioMagazine.com, and UrbanMuseMag.com, an author, singer/songwriter, actor, model, poet, dancer, and DJ. He is also the Owner of Pinnacle Entertainment Productions and the Owner/Publisher of GO BANG! Magazine. Follow him on Facebook @Pierre Andre Evans, Twitter @Playerre, and on Instagram @Pierre_Andre_Evans.

Many thanks to everyone who supported and participated in Part 1 of our RSD / One Year Anniversary celebration! Despite a short burst of heavy rain, we couldn’t have asked for a better day for digging 🙂 If you missed the event, check out the recap here, so many good records were waiting to be found!

Part Two is coming up soon (July 17th) and we’ve got another stacked lineup of live music, vinyl only DJ sets, and record vendors waiting for you! Featuring a live performance by Megiapa (3pm)


RECORD STORE DAY PT.2
Saturday July 17th, 2021
12pm-6pm
@ Silver Room
1506 E 53rd St
Chicago, IL

Featuring thousands of records, new and used, in all formats and genres, from local, independent record dealers!

Miyagi Records (WE WILL NOT BE VENDING AT THIS EVENT) | South Rhodes Records | Beverly Phono Mart | Jaytoo

Live Performance by: Megiapa
DJ Sets by: K.Max, Uncle El, La Queen, Shazam Bangles, & Trew

Free to everyone, all ages welcome! Come say hi and grab a record or 2!

Photo Credit:  Roy “Doc” Kemp 

(L to R) Go Bang!Magazine’s Pierre A. Evans, Andrew Kitchen, Harold Leffridge and Roy “Doc” Kemp

APRIL 1, 2021 UPDATE!!!!

ATTACK OF THE BOOGIE PREMIERS FRIDAY, APRIL 9th AT MIDNIGHT ON WJYS Channel 62 in Chicago & SYNDICATED Nationally in 25 cities

Andrew Kitchen comes to us from right here in Chicago. He started as a dancer and toured with the two-time award winning group ”Kitchen, and his Dancin’ Magicians, which he founded. He became an original Soul Train dancer in 1971 at the tender age of 11 years old, after lying about his age to meet the high school age requirement of the show.

Recently, the Soul Train dancer veteran, who was also the host of hundreds of episodes of his own tv dance show, the legendary Attack of the Boogie (1983-2014) on local cable access network (CAN TV), celebrated the reissue of his dance show’s 1984 theme song. His original release “Attack of the Boogie” is still today one of the most popular and in-demand songs in France and it’s hard to find here in the U.S.

Kitchen’s latest project is a remix of the tv show’s theme song, which is available on a compilation 12-inch from Chicago label Star Creature Universal Vibrations. Kitchen is thinking about rebooting Attack of the Boogie tv show and renaming it Attack of the Boogie Reloaded.

“Attack of the Boogie” 1984 Pilot (Fashion edition) link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MFYGG60IfRo

Classic “Attack Of The Boogie” tv show link (kids edition):  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L4Jl2TX8c6E

GO BANG! Magazine had a chance to meet and hang out with Andrew Kitchen at his record-release party, which was held in Chicago at the Promontory (upper patio) in Chicago’s trendy Hyde Park neighborhood. He attended, along with his longtime DJ Kool Hersh, who hosted the event. Of course RSVPs, masks and temperature checks were required, due to the current Covid-19 pandemic the world is currently going through.

Even with a pandemic going on, the event turned out great and it was such an honor and pleasure to meet and chill with him, his family and friends.

GO BANG! Magazine: When and how did you know that you wanted to professionally be a part of the entertainment industry as a dancer?

Andrew Kitchen: Well, I was dipping into art, doing sketches, drawing comic books, pictures, until one day my dad said to me, ”WOW’, you’re a good artist! You’re gonna make a lot of money after you die.” I was done. (lol) I started watching local tv dance shows and got interested in dancing fast.

GO BANG! Magazine: Being a former dancer on the original Soul Train show is quite an honor and historic. Please describe to our readers what it felt like to be an 11 year-old boy on the set of Soul Train.

Andrew Kitchen: It felt like another world, knowing that everyone was at least a few years older than me. But they made me feel welcome. Especially after a few dance moves that always turned out different than the original dance moves everyone else was doing. Which caught the host’s attention..

GO BANG! Magazine: How long did you dance on Soul Train and what is one of your best memories from the show?

Andrew Kitchen: I danced on the show for at least five years. My best memory from the show was performing in two high energy dance groups:

1.) The Ten Commandments (but there were only 5 of us, so we change the name to ”THE COMMANDMENTS”

2.) Dancing Super Heros”.

GO BANG! Magazine: Don Cornelius, the founder of Soul Train, was a talented but complicated Black man. Please describe to our readers your memory of him.

Andrew Kitchen: Don was sort of complicated. Kind of hard headed at times. But he knew what he wanted. He wanted to do SOUL TRAIN so bad, that after Channel 26 (WCIU) picked it up and the show got popular, Channel 26 could have taken the show and the rights and replaced Don. Don did not own the rights to the show at the time. His idea was never copyright / registered. Lucky for him his associates informed him so he could take immediate action.

GO BANG! Magazine: Having an entrepreneurial drive, you founded and hosted your own tv dance show, Attack of the Boogie in 1983. Why did you think that you could launch a dance show, host it and make it successful?

Andrew Kitchen: After Soul Train ended in Chicago, I felt there was a void. I always wanted to have my own dance show, but wanted it to stand out more. After the success that Don had with Soul Train in Chicago, I knew it was time for something new. So, I did what no other dance show has ever done. I created ”ATTACK OF THE BOOGIE” (the name had to stand out and get people talking) The dancers had to live up to the name when performing. We also did something that no other dance show had ever done at the time. We added a live studio audience to cheer the dancers on, along with a Fashion segment for up and coming models and designers/boutiques. The show was only 30 minutes, but had a big impact and the excitement to keep fans tuning in every week. After a few years, there was a waiting list, for up to a year, to be part of the studio audience.

GO BANG! Magazine: Many of our readers remember the tv show and especially the catchy theme song. What made you decide to re-release the theme song as a remix?

Andrew Kitchen: After seeing copies online like ebay bidding as high as a couple of hundred (dollars) and constant requests for any available copies anywhere, I didn’t have any idea where to go until DJ Kool Hersh contacted me about a reissue of the theme as a remix on vinyl.

GO BANG! Magazine: At the recent record release party in Chicago, your longtime DJ Kool Hersh hosted the event. How did you two first meet and what is it that keeps you two working together?

Andrew Kitchen: Our first meeting was at Starbucks, where he told me he was a big fan of the theme song (he had won the bid on ebay to purchase it.) He told me about the labels plans (Star Creature Records) to release a vinyl 12-inch featuring the theme song as a remix and title the Vinyl Release ”Attack Of The Chicago Boogie.” I like the direction the label is going. I like working with DJ Kool Hersh because he has great communication and fresh ideas to keep moving forward in this ever changing music world.

GO BANG! Magazine: There’s also talk about you bringing Attack of the Boogie dance show back to television. Tell us if this is true and if so, tell us more about the rebooted show.

Andrew Kitchen: Yes! We are working on bringing the show back to fans, because we love our fans, and this is something that they have asked and requested for years. So there will be not one, but two versions.

First off, while Covid-19 is still in effect, in early 2021 we will be releasing a weekly re-edited version of the show called ”ATTACK OF THE BOOGIE RELOADED” featuring classic episodes with fresh new interviews from your favorite dancers and classic performances from big name artists and entertainers.

After Covid-19 has ended, (being positive), we will be bringing back a full NEW live version of ”ATTACK OF THE BOOGIE.” We promise it will be just as entertaining as the Original and it will still feature the popular ”POWER DANCE CIRCLE!”

GO BANG! Magazine: The Covid-19 pandemic has dampened and ruined the entire year of 2020 thus far, for many people. They are dealing with it in various ways. Some are doing just fine, while others are depressed because of loneliness or death to loved ones, due to the virus. How has the pandemic affected you?

Andrew Kitchen: You are so correct. It has done damage for many people, businesses and entertainers in so many ways. Many projects for me also stopped, due to no studio audience and the lack of dancers and actors to complete the production in a quality way. The challenge of staying healthy is still at risk. I’m praying for everyone for a positive and healthy outcome.

GO BANG! Magazine: Being a Black man in America today is dangerous on a daily basis. We have ALL experienced it in different ways. How have you been affected by systematic racism and have you witnessed White privilege? If so, please describe the instance for our readers.

Andrew Kitchen: During the years of my career, I have experienced more than my share. From being in the right place at the wrong time to being pulled over for taking friends home (and did I mention not making it home?) It’s something that we have to be smarter about in certain situations if you want to get through it. But, it is always easier said than done)

GO BANG! Magazine: In conclusion, what are your current plans for the future?

Andrew: We are producing a NEW FRIDAY MORNING WAKE UP ENTERTAINMENT SHOW CALLED: ”THE WEEKEND PARTY” that I will be hosting along with a co-host (to assist people to get up for that final drive to work for the weekend with energy, incentives, music, on-location events, guest and a happy/fun feeling to make it through the final work day before the weekend.)

The show will premiere in EARLY 2021 (On local Broadcast Channels) ALSO A BRAND NEW NU-POP/SINGLE WILL BE RELEASE IN A THE NEXT MONTH OR SO ENTITLED: ”MY HEART PLAYS FOR YOU” (ANDREW KITCHEN-FEATURING PEPPER GOMEZ) I feel this is my best musical work to date. (Original & Fresh) I hope you enjoy it.

Lastly, to To GO BANG! Magazine, “THANK YOU and MUCH SUCCESS to you.


YOU CAN WATCH
“Attack Of The Boogie” Andrew Kitchen 4 Real Music Official Video Edit By Marcus Mixx
Video Link: https://youtu.be/izEEgP0OMoc


Follow Andrew Kitchen on ALL social media formats @Andrew Kitchen





Pierre A. Evans is a freelance writer of Entertainment, Music, Art, Culture, Fashion and Current Events, and previously for SoulTrain.com, NDigo.com, ChicagoDefender.com, EmpireRadioMagazine.com, and UrbanMuseMag.com, an author, singer/songwriter, actor, model, poet, dancer, and DJ. He is also the owner of Pinnacle Entertainment Productions. Follow him on Facebook, Twitter, and on Instagram

On November 24, 2019, I accepted an offer for my dream job with a radio station, as a freelance writer and social media manager. This was my first time fully pursuing my dream of being self-employed, so I took a leap of faith and accepted the position, as a side hustle to my main job. I could work from home as well. Everything was going well on the dream job. I felt that the job was secure and it was paying twice the pay as my main job. I continued doing both jobs and on December 20, 2019 I went on vacation from my main job.

From December 20th throughout the holiday season, I was on cloud nine, loving my new career. While on vacation from my main job, I had time to really think about what I wanted to do. I decided that I was sick of my regular “9 to 5” and I should pursue my dream full-time. My new dream job was a part of the iHeart Media family.

On January 6, 2020, when I returned from vacation to my main job, I submitted my letter of resignation, effective immediately. I was fully self-employed. Unfortunately, the next day, my dream job let me go, due to a massive and nationwide iHeart Media lay-off. Last hired, first fired. I didn’t know what I was going to do. Yesterday, I had two jobs and today I have NO job! Fortunately, I was eligible for Unemployment Compensation.

Since I’m home and got free time, I decided that now that I am unemployed and have plenty of free time, this would be the best time to go on a vacation. What better place to go, to lift my spirits, than New Orleans, Mardi Gras, on Fat Tuesday! So that’s what I did…me and my homie. From February 23, 2020 thru Wednesday February 26, 2020 I had a ball. This time included Fat Tuesday, February 25th. I had a great time, but I found that the people and the city were too slow for me. I’m high spirited and swift-minded and I found the city to be too laid back for me. So, I won’t be retuning there.

When I returned home, I learned of the Coronavirus and that it was spreading very fast in New Orleans. Luckily, I’d left just in time and didn’t really interact with many people, because I wasn’t feeling the city, as I stated already. All of my loved ones and friends reached out to me to make sure that I wasn’t sick. I wasn’t. Thank God!

Now it’s March 2020. On March 11, 2020 the Novel Coronavirus Disease, COVID-19, was declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization. On March 13, 2020 a national emergency was declared in the United States concerning the COVID-19 Outbreak. The world has been shut down and everyone is locked down in their homes. WTF!!!

Now back at home during this time off, and with me already being a published writer, I wanted to kick it up a notch and start my own online magazine. I have always wanted to do that, but never had the time to invest in starting it. NOW I HAD THE TIME! The world is on lockdown! I pivoted from being an author to being a publisher.

The purpose of my magazine would be to enlighten my readers with stories, people and events that are making POSITIVE CONTRIBUTIONS TO THE WORLD, highlighting known and unknown individuals and events.

So, on April 1, 2020 I launched the first issue of my magazine, GO BANG! Magazine, (www.GoBangMagazine.com) with NO START UP MONEY and NO publishing EXPERIENCE. Having worked with historic and iconic media outlets such as The Chicago Defender Newspaper, N’Digo Magapaper and the Soul Train brand, I was fully groomed to start my own. All I had was a vision, passion and a dream! I would now be the CEO, Publisher, Senior Editor and Journalist, as well as the Promoter and Publicist.

April was just one month after COVID-19 was categorized as a pandemic. As I said, the world shut down, so the timing of my magazine couldn’t have been better. Everybody was at home and had nothing to do. Why not read GO BANG! Magazine?


September 2020 marked GO BANG! Magazine’s six-month anniversary. At this point, GO BANG! Magazine had been received overwhelmingly great across the planet, not just here in the United States. GO BANG! Magazine is global and includes readers in United Kingdom, China, Nigeria, Australia, Germany, Spain, France, Japan, Saint Lucia and United Arab Emirates. WOW, WOW & WOW!!!

I’m told that the public loves the in-depth interviews and the people that I select to interview. Many of the interviewees have commented on how they love the way I conduct the interviews, which are via email, the questions asked, and how they are allowed to fully express themselves, with no restrictions.

November 2020, I accepted a job with the Chicago Cook Workforce Partnership as a Lead Contact Tracer. I had always wanted to help rid the world of this deadly pandemic, and now I had the chance. This was a work-from-home position, so it wouldn’t interfere with publishing my magazine. My Contact Tracing duties include: leading 16 Contact Tracers in contacting individuals that may have been exposed to COVID-19 thru close contact with a COVID-19 infected individual and provide them with information and guidance to interrupt/reduce the ongoing transmission of the disease by obtaining symptom information, advising them to self-quarantine and to monitor their health, assisting exposed individuals in getting tested, connecting individuals to resources and support during self-quarantine and self-isolation.

March 2021, I initiated accepting promotional ads and offering sponsorship packages to individuals and businesses. As of now, ads are my focus. In the near future, as the world opens back up, I will focus on GO BANG! Magazine sponsored events, and therefore my focus will be more on soliciting sponsorship packages.

April 1, 2021: Celebrating ONE YEAR of publication, GO BANG! Magazine has achieved what many other media outlets haven’t.  April 1, 2021 marks the ONE YEAR Anniversary of GO BANG! Magazine!  In that one year, GO BANG! Magazine has become the reliable source for in-depth interviews and an internationally global successful medium.  The magazine has interviewed hundreds of celebrities and everyday individuals.  It proudly boasts, having readers from the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, China, Italy, Nigeria, Australia, Germany, Spain, France, Japan, Saint Lucia and several other countries.   

In addition to that,  GO BANG! Magazine is now offering reasonably priced monthly AD SPACE  and seeking SPONSORSHIP opportunities for businesses and/or individuals interested in sponsoring upcoming events produced by the GO BANG! Magazine brand. 

In addition to the magazine, I have also launched a newsletter which creates a database of my readers and followers. I have sister sites of the magazine on all social media platforms as well. With all of these platforms, it has given me an audience to promote and sell merchandise, as well as fundraise. I have created promotional facemasks, hats and shirts with the GO BANG! Magazine logo on it! The items have been received positively by the public and sales have been great!

I am proud, amazed, thrilled and thankful for the first year of GO BANG! Magazine and I look forward to more years to come.

What I have learned during this wonderful journey is that you must be creative, be persistent, trust yourself, have faith, hang in for the long-haul, be flexible and always be willing to learn more about your field of business.

I had a DREAM…
COVID-19 Pandemic gave me TIME…
GOD gave me the GIFT to……

GO BANG!…

I DID!



Thank you ALL for your past, present and future support!!!!



Pierre A. Evans is a freelance writer of Entertainment, Music, Art, Culture, Fashion and Current Events, and previously for: SoulTrain.com, NDigo.com, ChicagoDefender.com, EmpireRadioMagazine.com, and UrbanMuseMag.com, an author, singer/songwriter, actor, model, poet, dancer, and DJ. He is also the owner of Pinnacle Entertainment Productions. Follow him on Facebook, Twitter, and on Instagram

For Immediate Release
October 29, 2020

The African American Arts Alliance
to host 2020 Black Excellence Awards

Online ceremony honoring Black artists to be held November 10th

Chicago, IL—The African American Arts Alliance (AAAA) will host the 20th annual Black Excellence Awards, an evening celebrating Black artists, Black voices, and Black stories across all artistic disciplines, on November 10, 2020 at 7pm. The 2020 virtual celebration will honor selected honorees who have exhibited artistic excellence throughout the past year. The live ceremony, to be broadcast on Facebook Live at https://www.facebook.com/aaaachicago, is free and open to the public.

“The Black Excellence Awards have been honoring Black artists for the past 20 years. This year, even though we aren’t able to gather in the same room, the celebration will go on. In this difficult year for so many people, we need to uplift each other as we celebrate Black achievement and come together to remember the importance of the arts and artists in the Chicago community,” comments AAAA Board Chair and Black Ensemble Theater Founder and CEO Jackie Taylor.

The Black Excellence Awards provides recognition of professional African American artists for their achievements of excellence and creativity in the arts. The committee has evaluated performances and works by artists across all artistic disciplines that were created or produced in the past season.

In previous years, several artists in each category were nominated by committee members then voted upon. Due to the shift caused by the pandemic, the nomination and selection process was streamlined. There is no slate of nominees, rather a single awardee, identified as having exhibited artistic distinction, for each category. The awardees will be announced soon. More information is available at https://www.aaaachicago.org/2020-black-excellence-awards.

About the African American Arts Alliance
In 1997 a group of Chicago’s leading African American artists and arts organizations came together and formed a new organization; incorporated as the African American Arts Alliance of Chicago. This organization embraced the history of the original 1977 Chicago Black Theater Alliance while expanding their scope to include diverse groups of artistic mediums which includes theaters, dance, music, literature, film, visual arts organizations, and individuals.

The mission of the African American Art Alliance is to increase public awareness, interaction, communication and development of African American arts organizations and artists within the city of Chicago.

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HEY! IT’S GO BANG! Magazine’s 6 MONTH ANNIVERSARY!

I debuted my magazine on April 1, 2020 and these past 6 months have been spectacular. I want to thank EACH & EVERY ONE OF YOU for your support and feedback. Your encouragement keeps me motivated to continue doing what I do and bringing you more in-depth and BANGIN’ interviews!  THANK YOU!

In early 2020 before the COVID-19 pandemic, I decided to publish GO BANG! Magazine.  I wanted to create a platform designed to be an informational, educational and entertainment resource, providing the reader with in-depth reporting on groundbreaking people, places and events, that are making positive differences in the world. I wanted the coverage to run the gamut, from the Arts to Science, and from Technology to Night Life.

In March 2020, the CORONAVIRUS hit the United States of America.  The ENTIRE PLANET was banished to their homes. Everyone was afraid and confused.  It was at this point in time that I knew it was time to debut my magazine.  The WORLD needed something to soothe their minds, just like comfort food soothes your spirit.  They also had plenty of time to read.  So I decided to debut in April, which also happens to be my birth month.

GO BANG! Magazine has interviewed local, national and international DJs, Musicians, Producers, Comedians, Actors, Artists, Dancers, Models, Designers, Screenwriters, Authors, Community Activists, Entrepreneurs and people like YOU!

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