Thursday, 29 November 2012

SECOND ACT: Cover girl Regina Beavers gets real about finding love, staying positive, and paying it forward

GOOD LOOKING OUT: "As I grow and as I build, I want to give back," says Beavers.

About two weeks after our amazingly successful Wyndham Hotel sit-down interview, I ring up Regina to talk about the upcoming holidays and the road to 2013. Nosy as I am, I wanted to find out what would make her Christmas extra special and truly memorable. “Apart from the camp, for me this Christmas represents the end of one thing and the start of something new,” she tells me frankly. “I just want to end 2012 as another fruitful year, and I really want to feel secure about the positives coming my way and the security and positiveness that family and close friends bring.” Spoken like a true lady who knows there’s more to life than the material things. 

Of course, this wouldn’t really be a complete TALLAWAH cover exclusive without a healthy serving of the intimately personal. Just like other private celebs who closely guard their love lives as fiercely as Colonel Sander’s secret KFC recipe, Regina will neither confirm nor deny the talk that she is seeing a member of the Blu Grass in the Sky band. But Regina will tell you this: She is indeed happy and in love with a man she considers her soulmate. Could he be The One? 

“Everything tends to align itself all at once. The right time, the right place,” she explains, with a smile as wide as the Rio Grande. “God has his plans. I’m very spiritual, and I’ve connected with someone who is very spiritual as well. Love is the energy, it’s the motto, it’s the force.” 

Even so, Regina would much rather be dishing on her latest passion project, a creative camp for kids this Christmas dubbed “Expressions through Creativity (ETC),” scheduled to run from Dec. 17 to 22. “It’s that week right before the heart of Christmas and after school ends,” she says. “And everyday [the children] are gonna have workshops, presentations and many other activities.” 

Looking ahead, Regina says she is maintaining a bright outlook, eager to snap up the limitless possibilities that await her. “I honestly believe that to whom much is given, much is expected. I have so much further to go. But as I grow and as I build, I want to give back. I want to put myself in the kind of position that no matter what I’m doing, I’ll be able to assist the next generation or the next person beside me.” 

RELATED ARTICLE: 
Life in the Fast Lane: Read Part 1 of our cover story with Regina




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THINK BIG: 6 Expert-Approved Ways to Jump-Start Your Dreams and Live a Blessed Life

SKY'S THE LIMIT: When it comes to realizing big dreams, usually one feels it’s best to just release the fear and go after what you want. But more often than not, the success secrets of others are what we truly need to get us on that path to achieving triumph in whatever the heart desires – whether it’s landing a high-paying gig, financing grad school, or losing 50 pounds. Here are six fail-proof tips from the experts to aid you in your quest. Start using them today! 

Name It and Claim It: 
Affirm your heart’s desire as rightfully yours. Speak of the accomplishment in the present tense: “I am the best person for this job. The promotion is mine.” 

Put Yourself in the Picture: 
Imagine a day immersed in the role you hope to play, be it wife, father, CEO, or opera singer. Sketch or collage a storyboard of yourself doing those activities. Psychologists say visualization keeps us on track. 

Create a Timeline for Action: 
A dream is just a dream – until it has a due date. Work backward from that date to map out when interim goals will be met. Even if you have to adjust along the way, your timeline will keep you motivated. 

Keep Score: 
Chart your progress in a daily log: How many chapters studied, miles run, personal ads answered, calories consumed, whatever. At the end of the day, you’ll have something to celebrate or a powerful incentive to get going tomorrow. 

Don’t Play by Others’ Rules: 
Someone else’s path to success may inspire you, but remember that your unique gifts equip you to make things happen on your own terms. 

Use a Setback as a Stepping Stone: 
So the loan wasn’t approved or the grant proposal was rejected. Don’t beat yourself up about it. Look for the lesson in what went wrong, and apply this to get it right next time around.




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IN THE MIX: Spice and Tifa light up Tracks & Records + Busy Signal among Sting 2012 headliners

READY FOR ACTION: What many speculated about Busy Signal’s long-awaited return to the performance limelight has now been confirmed, as the deejay is set to make a triumphant reemergence at Sting 2012 this Boxing Day at Jamworld in Portmore. The official announcement came at the concert’s recent launch in Kingston. On the newly unveiled poster, he shares top billing with a star-studded lineup, which includes the likes of Mavado and Tommy Lee. Hence, those who want to catch Busy’s first live-in-action stage performance since his return to the island will have to make the trek over to Jamworld. 


DYNAMIC DUO: Before she blazed the stage as headliner of Tuesday night’s iteration of “Behind the Screens” inside Usain Bolt’s Tracks & Records, dancehall firestarter Spice showed off her latest creative partnership – an eye-popping visual for her Tifa collabo, Why U Mad? Directed by Dexter ‘3D’ Pottinger, the clip features the fearless duo in a series of superbly crafted get-ups as they put the haters to task with hard-hitting lyrics and a melodious hook. There’s even what appears to be a scene shot inside an asylum. Hilarious stuff. And a fly remix close to the end cemented the video’s overall success. As if the premiere weren’t enough, Tifa later joined her partner-in-rhyme onstage to render a sizzling performance of the track, which truly whipped the crowd into a frenzy, made all the more intense once Spice (rocking big hair and showing some skin) launched into her solo repertoire, offering spirited takes on her big hits like “Jim Screechy” and “Body Great.”




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LAW & ORDER: At its best, Courthouse Drama is a crazy-lively romp

CLASS IN SESSION: Wright and Davis share a scene.

On the surface, Courthouse Drama feels like two plays in one, which isn’t at all surprising in the end, given that the production takes on so many hot-button issues (with fair overall results), including teenage dyslexia, small-business entrepreneurship, domestic service, love-triangle drama and paternal delinquency. And smack in the centre of all the fireworks is the force-of-nature who goes by Delcita (Andrea Wright), the fast-talking, take-no-mess livewire who is essentially the life of the party and an engaging, unfailingly funny presence throughout. 

Penned by Paul Beale (collaborating with Wright for the umpteenth time), the show’s first half is largely centred on Delcita’s struggles to graduate from school with a solid basic education when faced with severe reading-learning difficulties – not to mention a less-than-pleasant home life and an education system fraught with shortcomings. 

The experience of watching it all unfold comes with some genuinely amusing moments, which only grow in intensity once we enter the second half, mainly featuring a courtroom showdown between a deadbeat dad, Diamond Francis (Dennis Titus) and his babymother and Delcita’s boss, Pamella (Sherene Davis), whom he refuses to support financially. It soon becomes a job for Delcita (and the vociferous judge) to let justice prevail. 

Given the country’s staggering socio-economic status quo, Courthouse Drama boasts plot points that should resonate with viewers of all stripes – even when the writing slips into stereotype and caricature. Even so, Wright (who dons a second hat as director) acts as a sort of reliable core thread holding the fabric in place. And she gets nice support from Margaret Wilson, Donald Thompson, Patrick Smith, Davis and Titus, who comprise the supporting cast. 

Lively and populated by crazy-cunning characters, Courthouse Drama is an entertaining romp that in spite of its shortcomings has something relevant to say and worth hearing. Tyrone’s Verdict: B- 

MORE THEATRE: 
Critic’s Notebook: Sizing up awards-season hopefuls




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ON THE SCENE: Romain Virgo + PM Portia Simpson-Miller + D'Angel + Nakazzi Hutchinson + Cecile Watson + Lisa Hanna

LIFE SIZE: Nov. 24, St. Andrew. Multifaceted ceramic artist Nakazzi Hutchinson (right) engages PM Portia Simpson-Miller in discussion at the opening day of the Jamaica Business Development Corporation’s (JBDC) shopping affair "Signature Sorrel," which was held on the grounds of Jamaica House last weekend. The event featured authentic Jamaican fare including art, food and home accents. Accompanying the Prime Minister is the Chief Executive Officer of JBDC, Valerie Veira(Photo: OPM)

IF YOU BUILD IT: Nov. 26, Kingston. Youth and Culture minister Lisa Hanna, spends time with YUTE programme beneficiary, Jermaine Braithwaite, ahead of the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MOU) by PM Portia Simpson-Miller for a new YUTE BUILD Project - an initiative of the NHT, HEART Trust/NTA and the PSOJ on Monday at Jamaica House. The new project, supported with a $10 million grant from the NHT, will support the training and internship for 50 youngsters in construction skills leading toward certification. Also participating in the function was the Managing Director of the NHT, Cecile Watson(Photo: OPM)

PARTY OF SIX: Nov. 24, Port Royal. Rocking a foxy ponytail and a sexy mini, dancehall diva D’Angel (2nd right) shares lens time with Hennessy's Geoffrey Bouilly and Debbian Spence-Minott (left) and members of the Hennessy promotional team. Occasion was "Hennessy Artistry: The Global Art of Blending," a stunning performance showcase which featured top Jamaican entertainers like Rodney Price, Richie Stephens, Jessica Yap, Nitty Kutchie and Romain Virgo. This international event was first launched in New York in 2006 and since then has been staged in New Kingston, Los Angeles, and Miami, among other international hotspots. (Photo: ProComm)

THE RIGHT NOTE: Nov. 24, Port Royal. With his trademark high-energy delivery and tonnes of charisma, singer Romain Virgo kept spirits high at Saturday’s ‘Hennessy Artistry: The Global Art of Blending’ with an A-class performance that left the massive crowd yearning for more. The event was staged at the old Coal Wharf in Port Royal. (Photo: ProComm)




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MODERN ROMANCE: Keneea Linton-George debuts smashing spring/summer 2013 line

TAKE TWO: A pair of minimalist looks from the Lady In Red collection.

Ladies, listen up: When day/evening dress code calls for original thinking next season, consider Keneea Linton-George’s stunning, delightfully extreme “Lady In Red” silhouettes, complete with bold strokes of red and black, and a fanciful flourish or two. This past Tuesday evening, the creative designer stayed true to her mantra of “clean cuts and sophisticated finish” by previewing a new 22-piece collection to a sizeable, invitation-only audience inside New Kingston’s Courtleigh Auditorium, gorgeously decked-out and beautifully lit. 

The guest list: The haute flock aside, we spotted such well-known faces as Danielle Crosskill, Emprezz Mullings, Justine Henzell, Drew Brennan, Chris Reckord, Damian Shaw, Brian George and Novia McDonald-Whyte, in addition to a few other editors, bloggers and style watchers, and all-round high-fashion aficionados. 

The couture and the models: Sleek, slender Pulse models breathed full-bodied life into the mix of fabulous pencil dresses, elegantly romantic flair gowns and chic jackets that the designer sent down her runway to a haunting, pulsating soundtrack. Think miles and miles of Chantilly lace, as well as red and black wool, silk chiffon, mesh details, taffeta, and seductively daring cuts sure to get heads turning as you glide into that ballroom or cocktail reception. 


Ageless beauties: It would be remiss of me to not mention the presence of two legendary catwalk divas who bookended the fashion show: the superfierce Althea Laing (right) who opened the proceedings rocking an otherworldly Chantilly lace pencil skirt and silk grosgrain peplum jacket (with red floor-length taffeta cape), and groundbreaking glamazon Joan McDonald, who stepped out in another bonafide highlight – a Red Peau de soie gown with Chantilly lace panel detail. “I like Keneea’s line; it takes you from one mood to the next,” offers McDonald. “It says we’re women, and that’s what we like.” Looking great ladies. Age certainly ain’t on your page! 

The final word: Among noteworthy local designers very few can pull off high drama (with splashes of the unexpected) quite like Keneea Linton-George. “I like to design for the bold, confident woman and she will always feel comfortable in red. I’ve always loved red, so it was an easy choice for me,” she told me after the show. “The inspiration behind this collection was about finding those designs that would be show-stopping and still make a woman feel comfortable.” Mission accomplished. Overall, a smashing set of wearable pieces boasting impeccable craftsmanship and that requisite elegant flair.





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NEWS & NOTES: Two indie romances top Spirit Award noms + Bolt up for Sports Illustrated’s Sportsman of 2012

CRÈME DE LA CRÈME: Fifteen outstanding global stars are vying for the title of “Sportsman of 2012” via Sports Illustrated, the venerable and highly respected publication. Of course, our living legend Usain Bolt is among the nominees. The winner will be announced on Dec. 3. In addition to Jamaica’s sprint king, the likes of NBA phenoms LeBron James and Jeremy Lin, tennis champ Serena Williams, gymnast Gabby Douglas, and soccer great Didier Drogba, are in the running. “On the biggest stages, Bolt has transcended the scoreboard and stopwatch,” notes writer Tim Layden. “Recovered from back injuries, he owned the totality of the London Olympics.… and he’s now a rare athlete whose name connotes greatness beyond description.” Meanwhile, the sprinter is selling off a host of one-of-a-kind items (wonderful memorabilia, Bolt-endorsed keepsakes) to benefit the Usain Bolt Foundation. It’s an auction, so the highest bidder gets to walk away with the goods. Get to bidding now at nissangoldgtrauction.com. 


SCREEN GEMS: The quirky romances Moonrise Kingdom and Silver Linings Playbook have picked up five nominations each to lead the Spirit Awards honoring independent film. Both films are competing for the best-picture prize at the Awards, one of Hollywood's first big announcements on the long, unpredictable road to Oscar night. Also competing for best picture: the father-daughter tale Beasts of the Southern Wild (above); the black comedy Bernie; and the gay drama Keep the Lights On. The Spirit Awards nominees were announced on Tuesday in Los Angeles by actors Anna Kendrick, Zoe Saldana and Common. Presented by the cinema group Film Independent, the Spirit Awards will be handed out at an afternoon ceremony along the beach in Santa Monica, California, on Feb. 23, the day before the Academy Awards. The Spirit Awards broadcast will air that night on IFC. To see a complete list of this year’s nominees go to spiritawards.com.




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Wednesday, 28 November 2012

IN THE FAST LANE: Highly motivated and totally driven, Regina Beavers is living life on her own terms

As she prepares to take on the biggest challenge of her career: spearheading a creative camp for kids this Christmas, Regina Beavers learns the value of speed with caution – and what it takes to become a woman in full. Story by Tyrone S. Reid. 

It’s a sunny Thursday afternoon in the city, and Regina Beavers is having a decidedly unglamorous moment. Perched on a flight of stairs by the Wyndham poolside in New Kingston, the stunning beauty is in the throes of our photoshoot, but one can’t help but notice that her forehead is dotted with pearls of sweat. We take a break from the shoot to freshen her makeup and resume snapping away. 

 The perspiration becomes completely understandable though once Regina begins to recount the perplexing ordeal she faced mere moments before pulling into the hotel’s driveway. Turns out, she was involved in a bit of an “accident” with a rather unobliging female motorist. It was nothing life-threatening, but to say the least, Regina was not prepared for what eventually played out. “I was shocked to see that this lady wanted to go to the police! That has never happened with me before,” she says, the shock evident in her voice. “Mi lick people already, and them just take my details and we sort it out. But this lady was carrying on and wanted to involve the authorities. So I had to just keep calm and proceed to take control of the situation.” 

To someone less experienced in crisis management, the situation could have easily spiralled into an utter catastrophe. But Regina chalks up her ability to bring a speedy resolution to the conflict to her faith in God and sturdy belief in herself. “When things like this happen I just talk to God in my mind, ask him to give me strength, ask him to give me favour, bring light to the situation,” she explains, “and more often than not it works out. And for me, there are lessons to be learnt from this. Regina, slow down still,” she adds with a laugh. 

IN FULL BLOOM 

Yes, the amusingly ironic metaphor hasn’t escaped her. A young and driven career woman leading a life in the fast lane will have to hit the decelerator every now and again. At just 28, Beavers’ plate is so high with responsibilities (both personal and professional), and yet she continues to make remarkable strides in her ongoing quest to become a woman in full. “I give thanks for being busy, because there are people out there who want to be in a position like mine. I take nothing for granted.” 

Navigating a seemingly well-rounded life in the public eye has been Regina’s lot ever since becoming the youngest-ever winner (at age 17) of the Miss Jamaica World crown over a decade ago. And we’ve watched her blossom gracefully over the years, taking on stints in television, stage and small-screen acting, pageant direction, and her latest move to FAME FM, where she now serves as co-host of their Monday-night gabfest Uncensored, alongside Rodney Campbell. “I’m still hungry, still going forward. I’m happy with what I’ve been achieving,” Regina tells TALLAWAH. “When I just started out, it was about learning the business and gaining my experience, and so I’m finally at the point where I feel like I can step out on my own and do something really big.” 

Enter her Expressions Through Creativity (ETC) camp for kids, set to get going this Christmas. “For years I’ve been talking to my friends about doing something like this, but what I really wanted to do was open a school, but that wasn’t too feasible an idea,” she explains. “Inside my soul and heart, I am a person who loves to share, who loves to interpret kids, who loves to teach. I’m very inspired by the little ones. And I’ve always wanted to give back; I believe in paying it forward. I’ve always had these ideas and desires, but I never felt confident and secure enough to step out on my own to fulfil the dream. So it’s finally happening and this camp is about teaching and helping the young ones to grow. Plus, there’s nothing like it now so I wanted to fill that void.” 

MISS INDEPENDENT 

Seated across from in the foyer, just outside the hotel’s Independence Ballroom, Regina is dolled up like the Christmas perfect in a charming red-and-white ensemble, exuding the poise, warmth and radiant intelligence with which admirers have come to associate her. She’s telling me about that major turning point when her eyes were truly opened to the endless possibilities that await her. “When I left [CVM at Sunrise], that’s when I began to see the whole wide world,” she admits. “There always comes a point when it’s time to move on, and it doesn’t necessarily have to be in an upward direction, but it’s still progressive, and I could see that it was time. I wouldn’t say that I was stifled; CVM was amazing. But I have more in me; I have so much more to offer and whatever I do I’m gonna give it all I have.” 

And that most certainly includes her radio-hosting gig (“It’s been an easy transition for me; very smooth”); enjoying her weekly on-air sparring with Campbell (“I look up to him, and his ability to just be himself.”), as well as embracing the ever-changing dynamics of being mom to son, Gio, who is growing up at lightning speed. “As he gets older I’m learning to appreciate the moments I have with him now because I look back at the baby pictures, and I can never go back there. He’ll never smell like milk again,” she says, laughing. “But I learn to appreciate him at age 7 just as much as when he was six and younger. He can reason with you now. Challenging you now. And with my hours I get more time with him. Now I get to drop him to work every morning, which is beautiful.” 

RELATED ARTICLE: 
Second Act: Read Part 2 of our cover exclusive with Regina




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THE GENTLEMAN’S GAME: Veteran scribe Tony Becca chronicles more golden moments in cricket

PAGE BY PAGE: History and sport intertwined.

“It will enrich your experience,” says former West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) president Pat Rousseau, referring to Tony Becca’s superb new book Cricket Lovely Cricketers: The Best of My Time (Wilson, Franklyn Barnes Publishers), a diminutive but meticulously detailed collection of insights into the careers of great cricketers, that allows Becca to demonstrate yet again that he is not only an incisive, pungently truthful and uncompromising commentator but also an historian of merit. 

Overall though, the book is best described as a sharply focused collection of historical vignettes, with each recollection of the featured cricket geniuses glittering with factual certitude and are obviously mined from the cherished memories of Becca's most enjoyable match experiences. 

A bonafide collector’s item, it will take pride of place in every self-respecting cricket historian’s library. “We were delighted and intrigued to be part of this his historical moment in cricket,” notes publisher Delano Franklyn. “This book will open your eyes and mind to Becca’s long journey in cricket.”

RELATED ARTICLE:
Grace Notes: Coddington's lyrical memoir




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OSCAR WATCH: Keep a close eye on these 8 films as awards season heats up

As the countdown to next January’s all-important Academy Award nominations picks up steam, these eight buzzworthy films have been garnering major acclaim for weeks. Translation: Be sure to check them out before they win big. 

Life of Pi 
Based on Yann Martel’s Pulitzer-winning bestseller, this Ang Lee-directed feature is a masterful and visceral feast, blending fantasy with magical realism, and anchored by a star-making turn from Indian newcomer and Best Actor hopeful Suraj Sharma (above).

Les Miserables 
Heralded as the most feverishly anticipated movie-musical in over a decade, Les Mis not only boasts direction by Tom Hooper (The King’s Speech) and a lavishly talented cast (Hugh Jackman, Anne Hathaway), but also the distinction of having its actors sing live as opposed to miming over pre-recorded tracks. A bonafide contender, opening in wide release on Christmas Day. 

Silver Linings Playbook 
A star-studded cast headed by Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence breathe full-bodied life into a batch of well-drawn characters in this ensemble comedy about finding love in the wake of tragedy. Though it also features turns from such veterans as Robert DeNiro and Jackie Weaver (Animal Kingdom), the buzz over Lawrence’s comically savvy performance is the most deafening so far. 

Zero Dark Thirty 
How did those US Navy Seals eventually locate and eliminate the ultimate master of hide-and-go-seek, Osama Bin Laden. Kathryn Bigelow and Mark Boal, the Oscar-winning duo behind 2010’s The Hurt Locker, aim to shed compelling light on the series of events leading up to the history-making moment. Out in December. 

The Impossible 
Led by strong turns from Ewan McGregor and Naomi Watts (as a lovely married couple), this is a gripping, based-on-a-true-story tale of survival and family ties in the wake of the devastating tsunami that demolished much of South-East Asia in 2004. 

The Hobbitt 
Peter Jackson returns to the storyline that made him famous and helped secure multiple statuettes for his majestic Lord of the Rings trilogy. Expect a spectacle-filled origin story heavy with sorcery, the spirit of adventure, and appearances from the likes of Gandalf (Sir Ian McKellen) and Galadriel (Cate Blanchett). 

Django Unchained 
Boundary-pushing filmmaker Quentin Tarantino (Pulp Fiction, Inglourious Basterds) directs a seasoned cast in this rip-roaring saga of slavery and vengeance, with key performances from Jamie Foxx (in the titular role), Christoph Waltz and Leonardo DiCaprio. There will be blood. Opening soon. 

Anna Karenina 
Actress Keira Knightley’s creative partnership with director Joe Wright has reaped rich dividends in the past, including an Oscar nod for her work in 2005's Pride & Prejudice. If things go their way this time around, they could earn recognition for this vivid, sweeping adaptation of the Tolstoy classic that has been hailed for its lavish costuming and sumptuous visual details.




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ALBUM OF THE WEEK: Rihanna’s Unapologetic is replete with defiance and dance grooves

WILD AT HEART: Rihanna's latest is an edgy-electric chart-topper.

At this point in the game, unstoppable seems the most apt adjective to summon in describing Rihanna, the high-flying pop superstar who could give the Energizer Bunny a proper run for the money. She just keeps going and going – even when her troubled, tabloid-y personal life threatens to eclipse her hard labour, marked by consistent global tours and dropping new music at near-Usain Bolt speed. 

Now comes her latest effort, the cheekily titled Unapologetic, which some might deem a subtle shot at the detractors who have taken her to task (yet again) over the rumoured rekindling of her romance with singer Chris Brown, who infamously beat her to a pulp back in February 2009, on the eve of the Grammys. 

As we’ve come to anticipate, much of Rihanna’s new music compellingly mirrors this latest phase of her trajectory, and as such she comes out swinging on the bumpin’, radio-ready jam “Nobody’s Business,” which features guest vocals from Brown. With its slick beat and in-your-face lyrics, it’s an easy standout. It helps, too, that the duo share an effortless rapport as they trade lines about being crazy for each other in spite of popular public opinion. Art imitating life? 

Sparring of a slightly similar stripe plays out on the Eminem-assisted “Numb,” about falling hard for the wrong kind of love, and “Loveeeee Song,” a mild banger with relative newcomer Future. 

Unapologetic, the singer’s seventh album, has already hit number one across the pond (and lately on the Billboard Top 200), and while it’s not a tour-de-force like, say, 2007’s Good Girl Gone Bad or 2009’s Rated R, it’s a solid effort packing enough heat – slinky pop grooves, R&B-electro cuts, daring/defiance – to satisfy her core fanbase. 

Enchanting lead-off single “Diamonds” (a Stargate/Sia Furler creation) is an instant winner from the first few notes and one of the year’s best jams. Expect it to rightfully turn up on numerous Top Ten lists for 2012. Other noteworthy highlights? The dark, dancehall-sampling “No Love Allowed”; the rock-lite “Lost in Paradise” (also produced by StarGate); and “Love without Tragedy,” a tear-soaked lament perfect for the Instagram generation. Tyrone's Verdict: B+

DOWNLOAD: “Stay,” a warm, piano-driven lover’s petition, featuring Mikky Ekko




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Tuesday, 27 November 2012

NEWS & NOTES: Britain’s Jeremy Dear to address PAJ Awards + UWI Mona grad is new Rhodes Scholar

BRAIN POWER: “I am extremely elated and also humbled by the confidence that the committee has placed in me,” remarks 22-year-old Vincent Taylor of being selected as Jamaica’s 2013 Rhodes Scholar. “This is my second time around, and I hit the jackpot.” Taylor, a computer scientist graduate from UWI Mona, was chosen from a field of 11 finalists (five male, 6 six female), after two gruelling days of interviews. Possessed of a double-major degree in Computer Science and Electronics, the St. Elizabeth native is currently reading for a Masters in Philosophy (MPhil) and says he intends to continue in the field of network security while at Oxford University, where the scholarship is tenable. “Technology is becoming pervasive across the world,” notes Taylor, “and we need to have our networks secured so that our personal information and transactions will be safe.” 


GUEST OF HONOUR: Outstanding British journalist and union leader Jeremy Dear is set to give the keynote address at the Press Association of Jamaica (PAJ) Annual Awards scheduled for next Friday, Dec. 7 at the Pegasus Hotel in New Kingston. Dear will also be the main speaker at the annual National Journalism Week Forum, being put on by the PAJ and the National Integrity Action, on Dec. 4 at the Knutsford Court Hotel. He will be speaking on the topic “Media for the times...The Next 50 Years,” which is theme of National Journalism Week. Between 2001 and 2011, Dear served as the elected General Secretary of the 36,000-strong National Union of Journalists (NUJ) of the United Kingdom and Ireland. Prior to taking up full time employment with the NUJ, Dear worked as a staff and freelance journalist in newspapers and magazines, latterly as editor of The Big Issue magazine. His work has also appeared in The Guardian, Daily Mirror, New Statesman and many other publications.




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SCENE & HEARD: Usain Bolt + Sandrea Falconer + Asafa Powell + Wayne Marshall + PM Simpson-Miller

GENDER STUDIES: Nov. 23, Kingston. PM Portia Simpson-Miller, Information minister, Senator Sandrea Falconer, and UNFPA Director of the Caribbean Sub-Regional Office, Geeta Sethi, listen to a male participant during a Bureau of Women's Affairs forum last Friday, organised as part of the bureau’s advocacy for the elimination of violence against women. (Photo: OPM)

ALL GROWN UP: Nov. 24, St. Andrew. A mammoth crowd flocked to Asafa Powell's Beverly Hills pad on Saturday night to help the birthday boy blow out his flirty-thirty candles. Here, the star sprinter is seen with a trio of the foxy bunnies who helped make the night one to remember. (Photo:Skkan Media).
   
BODY LANGUAGE: Nov. 24, Westmoreland. Entertainer Wayne Marshall and a willing female accomplice work up a sweat on stage at LIME's Merry Moments road show inside Savanna-la-mar's Independence Park on the weekend. Meantime, the star's upcoming True Colours is one of the most feverishly awaited reggae-dancehall albums of next year. (Photo: STUSH).


TURNING POINT: Nov. 24, Spain. Playing DJ for the night, the World's Fastest Man was the life of the party inside Barcelona's Club Opium, expertly working the turntables as he celebrated his fourth hold on the title of World Male Athlete of the Year. Inset: It's fandemonium outside the PUMA store as Bolt conducts an impromptu autograph-signing session. (Photo: Getty Images)




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