Jay Moore won’t let this business leave him feeling Numb

I have known Jay Moore for a few years and have seen him transform a few times as he navigates this business we call show. I know he has learned a few tough lessons but as with any of us, these lessons allowed him to grow and find new directions. He is always willing to try new things, to reinvent himself when necessary, and to show others that it is all ok as long as you don’t give up. Recently, we had a little chat about it and we decided it would be good to share it with you all.

Q: You’ve had experience with some reality TV with Myrtle Me Jay. What was that experience like for you?

Jay Moore: My overall experience with Myrtle Me Jay was like a rollercoaster ride. There were happy moments, sad moments and moments that were really hard to watch. Overall, it was like therapy to me and it’s made me a stronger person.

You can subscribe to  BawnTv to catch Myrtle Me Jay here:

You can find out more about the show on their Facebook page too. 

Q: What advice would you give to someone who was thinking about doing reality TV?

JM: I would tell them to be as authentic and real as possible. Don’t be afraid to express yourself just because a camera is following you around. People want to see the real you and they want to be able to connect. Also, if there’s any skeletons in your closet, more than likely they will be exposed..so brace yourself.

Q: What was the most valuable thing you learned from that experience?

JM: True friendship. During the process of the show I learned who was planning on being in my life, as a friend, for life and who was only there for a temporary time. When it comes to my friends I value them, Respect them, want the best for them and love them. Overall, the experience taught me the true meaning of friendship and how to overcome hurdles you may have with certain friends. If the friendship is meant to be it will survive the storm.

Q: If you were to write an autobiography, what would the title be?

JM: This sounds cheesy but I would call it, “The MOORE I Know.” Lord that is so cheesy.

Q: You also have interest in the music business. What draws you to music?

JM: I absolutely love all kinds of music. It honestly started with me as a kid singing in chorus and also when entering junior high learning to play the trumpet.. I love the sounds, rhythms and the fact that with music you can truly express yourself in anyway that you feel comfortable. Music has always been my escape during the good and rough times of my life.

Q: What artists would you like to collaborate with?

JM: Even though this will probably never happen, I’d love to collaborate with Calvin Harris or even David Guetta. I love their beats and they have worked with everyone in the industry basically.

Q: How do you describe your music style?

JM: It is different, unique and risky (which I love). These days it’s so hard to be original because there are so many influences out there that we idolize and look up to. I always try to make my style different and something that catches the listeners ear.

You can check out Jay’s song, Numb here: https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/numb-single/id670375416

Q: Do you write your own songs?

JM: I write and produce about 95% of all my songs.

Q: What is one thing you absolutely cannot live without and one thing you wish we could all live without?

JM: I can not live with out my faith and I could definitely live without hatred from other people.

Be sure to follow Jay on Twitter to keep up with all he is up to: @thejayxo  

Help Derrick Ashong Take Back the Mic and be part of a Musical Movement

I’ve know Derrick Ashong through mutual friends for a few years now and have always enjoyed what he has to say, what he’s doing, and respected what he stands for. He is a perfect combination of activist, humanitarian, intellect, and soul. I’ve known him as a talk radio host as well as a musician and admired how he looks at the world. I recently found out that he was starting an Indiegogo campaign to change the game of hip hop and help artists get wider exposure. I did not hesitate at the chance to get involved. We’ve all read/heard/seen how music can transform lives, bridge gaps, and even aid in education. We’ve also watched as our culture has suffered due to lack of funding while artists struggle because they can’t catch that initial break they need.

Enter Take Back the Mic where you and I can help aspiring talent while having fun doing it! Think American Idol with the ease of an app where you can keep up with your favorite artists and vote for them to advance. No snarky judges, just FANS supporting their favorites and deciding what happens next. Please be sure to LIKE them on Facebook and FOLLOW them on Twitter, show your support, keep up with them, and share on your various social media platforms. 

I have to say that honored doesn’t begin to describe my feelings on being given the opportunity to interview Derrick or having the chance to be involved in this project in even a small way. I will let him explain it all further for you, enjoy!

Q: Tell me a little bit about what motivated you to start “Take Back the Mic?

Derrick Ashong: I was on a trip back to my hometown Accra, Ghana back in the early 2000′s and I noticed two significant things: first, unlike my previous trip a few years earlier where all the clubs & DJs were playing mostly American Hip Hop, the airwaves were now dominated by music with heavy, hybrid beats that supported lyrical flights in our indigenous languages.

This new style was called “Hip Life” – a hybrid between Hip Hop and Ghanaian Highlife, and the whole country, from little kids to my grandma were jamming to it.

The second thing that happened on that trip, is I got called a n*gger while walking down the street.  The guy who said it didn’t mean any harm, he was trying to be cool, colloquial and shout out the “American” in the way he thought Americans talk.  But it was the first term I’d ever heard that word in my homeland and it was a powerful reminder that US popular culture has a massive impact around the world.

Looking at those two factors – on the one hand we were taking Hip Hop and making it our own, and on the other, Hip Hop was reshaping us in “it’s own image” – made me really ask myself who decides what matters in our culture?  Who decides who “we” are?  And the more I thought about it the more I became obsessed with not so much what the answer was, but what it should be: “we do.”

That year, while walking the streets of Accra, I realized that not only was an entire generation worldwide using Hip Hop to define itself, but that definition could be empowering or degrading depending on whose voices spoke the loudest to the rest of the world.  I wondered what would we happen to global youth culture, if we did something as simple as amplify some new voices.  That was the birth of “Take Back the Mic.”

Q: How important do you think crowdfunding is for an artist today?

DA: I think crowdfunding is crucial for artists today, and as a creative I feel like I’m truly in the right place at the right time.  Go back a couple of decades and the cost of recording an album would have been prohibitive for most independent artists, and there was no reliable mechanism for harnessing the power of their networks to make those projects a reality.

Today it’s much cheaper to record, produce, shoot, edit, master, do FX, the whole nine.  For the first time in human history creatives of various stripes have the toolset to not only produce amazing, high-end works relatively cheaply, but they now have the ability to offer other people the opportunity to be a part of bringing beautiful and meaningful creations to life.

The power in crowdfunding is not only in the ability to harness capital towards a positive end, it’s in the opportunity to galvanize communities in collective actions to create art that reflects who we are.  It is the definition of taking back the mic.

Q: Hip Hop has become a language and a means of expression for many. What does music, and especially Hip Hop, mean to you on a personal level? For society as a whole?

DA: I’m an Afropolitan – a 21st Century product of a globalized world.  I grew up in Ghana, Brooklyn, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Jersey.  As a kid I moved every four years until I was 20.  For me music was always more than entertainment, it was a through-current that helped me form and maintain my identity, while also creating a bridge to the different cultures I grew up around.

Hip Hop was particularly impactful for me, in part because I was living in New York around the time it was born.  I was too young to really understand what was going on around me – what a “break beat” was, when we were “breakdancing” to it – but I like a lot of people had this sense that this is truly “our” music.  There’s been a loud debate lately about cultural appropriation in Hip Hop.  If you look at music historically, though, cultural appropriation is a given for any music whose influence reaches beyond the confines of its origins.  The bigger the impact your sound makes, the more other people believe in and want to belong to it.

Music is culture in motion.  I don’t think there’s anything wrong with many people drawing from and contributing to that evolving culture mix.  The trouble I see for our society is much more fundamental – what value do we place on the people who create our “culture”.  Everybody loooves to see boobs and bragadoccio in their Hip Hop artists, but we then we turn Black youth outsiders, people who’s lives are just…less than, despite the fact that their irrepressible creativity has helped to form ALL of our identities.

If you look at American Hip Hop today, frankly a lot of it has lost it’s soul.  In reality, that’s part of the lifecycle of any music.  Rather than blame the artists, the industry, the society etc., I believe we should channel our energies to supporting music that still makes us feel something.  And when you look at what artists are doing around the world you find that Hip Hop culture has far from run it’s course – in many ways it’s only now finding it’s voice.  And that is very much the voice of the global streets.

Q: You are a very busy man who is always one step ahead of the crowd. What else are you working on right now?

DA: To be honest this project is so big, for a team this small, that I can’t really do anything else.  With the exception of playing with my kids and my guitar, and periodically hitting the gym, I’m all-in on this.

Q: So many people are struggling to bring their dreams to life. What advice would you give to up and coming artists?

DA: Find a way to make money doing something you can believe in, that leaves room for you to build and develop your craft.  Artistry is like entrepreneurship, in that ultimately it’s not so much a sprint as a marathon.  You might not even get good at what you do for a decade or more.  Give yourself the time to become the artist you want to be.  And if you want to make $$ in a way that makes sense for your creativity – learn to do something hard, that other people can’t or won’t.  You’ll wind up getting paid more for less time, and the balance you can invest in yourself and your work.

Q: What would you say to those people who are at the end of their rope and ready to give up hope of ever making it work?

DA: Take a nap.  Get something to eat.  Watch a funny movie.  Get a day job, take a break for a couple of months.  Whatever you need to do to maintain your sanity and keep the lights on.  When you reach the end of your rope stop.  Find some more rope.  Then keep moving.

Q: What is one thing you absolutely cannot live without? What is one thing you wish we could all live without?

DA: The one thing I cannot live without are actually two – my little daughters who use my head for a treadmill and swear I was put on earth to be a living jungle-gym.  I guess God made them cute so they can get away with…everything.  Then again, if not for my wife these two would have killed me a long time ago so umm…yeah I’d have to say it’s her.

The one thing I wish we could all live without right now is Pete Carroll. 1 yard bro.  1 YARD!! Sorry…I’m not even a Seattle fan and it still hurts.

Q: Where can people find you, Derrick Ashong, online, so they can keep up with all that you do?

DA: The best place to connect with me is on Twitter: @DNAtv.  And of course peep www.takebackthemic.com to meet some phenomenal global talents as we build the first ever World Cup of Hip Hop!!  PEACE, D.N.A

I’d like to thank Derrick for taking time to talk to me! I encourage you to check out Take Back the Mic to find out how you can help! There are some pretty interesting PERKS:

Why Social TV?

For me, TV has always been social. I have always shared my favorite shows with my friends and family, discussed the latest episodes, and speculated about future story lines. I have been the same way with books, film, and any form of entertainment I truly cherish. When reading a particular book, I have always been the type to run out and buy a copy for someone I think will enjoy it or who may need to read it.

As a young boy, I really did pretend I was a co-host on Entertainment Tonight. I would imagine I was interviewing my favorite celebrities, sharing some witty banter with Mary Hart, and even being interviewed myself. I would fall asleep thinking of attending parties, red carpets, premieres, and charity events. Yes, some thought I was strange but I have always been fascinated with all of it. There was a time, when I was pretty young, that I had envisioned being a talk show host, a writer, an actor, and a singer. I was just a tad obsessed with it all.

When I first got involved with social media I felt it was a great outlet for someone like me and I could be part of certain things I had dreamt of on a small scale. Back then, we weren’t calling it “Social TV” but I sure was participating in it. As far as I can remember, The Insider (and my good friend Bryan Moore) was the first show I heard using the term but I could be mistaken. I’m sure someone will correct me if I am wrong.

The thing I love about Social TV is that it allows me to express my deep appreciation for the world of television, the actors, the writers, and everyone involved. As I mentioned, I have had this odd kinship with it since I was pretty much able to understand what I liked. Even to this day, there are certain television shows that I can turn to for comfort and that make me feel good or safe.

How many of us have memories of watching a specific show with our parents, grandparents, or even friends? When we watch these shows now, they bring back all the good memories associated with them. When it comes to sitcoms, there are even shows that literally have me laughing out load even if I have seen the episodes multiple times and I am expecting the punch lines.  Shows like Will and Grace, Golden Girls, Friends, Designing Women are just a few I could name, plus probably quote a few lines from off the top of my head.

Social TV is a no-brainer to me. Award shows, dramas, reality TV, even a talk show are just so much better when you are interacting with like minded people expressing your views and sharing your favorite moments. I particularly love attending events where we have live tweet-ups or covering red carpet events. Of course, being at the actual events are a bit more exciting but even live tweeting an award show with a group of people in person is so much fun! Our banter and interaction makes it so interesting and I have learned so much from my fellow “power tweeters”.

Speaking of my fellow “power tweeters” they have become some of my best friends and people I always look forward to seeing or speaking to. This world of Social TV has opened up so much for me personally, and I am so very grateful for it.

I hope that those of you on Twitter check me out nightly. I pretty much tweet at least one or two shows each night. Sometimes even more! I truly adore the sitcoms on TV Land and the people who work there. I have enjoyed many visits to the sets of Hot In Cleveland, The Soul Man, Kirstie, and The Exes plus I have enjoyed many moments on the sets of the Insider and Entertainment Tonight for events. I was honored to be able to be on red carpets or the One Direction Movie, The Transformers Movie, The Golden Globes, and The Tony Awards. I have been to the offices of TV Land to live tweet shows and have live tweeted recently with the cast of Scorpion on CBS.

It does feel like I am living my childhood fantasies while all of this has come full circle for me. One of the best parts is being able to click with people over what we are watching. I have made so many friends, even many who I haven’t met yet by just conversing during our favorite shows. These conversations have gone way beyond the fandom and have become true friendships. Being able to attend events with other fans is particularly interesting to me. The true fandoms are made up of the kindest, most genuine people who gather to celebrate their favorite entertainers and shows.

If we haven’t met yet, I look forward to running into you someday. If you haven’t tweeted with me during shows, check me out on Twitter @teeco71 and on Instagram I usually post a video of what I am watching each night. Sometimes, I wish I had a few more hours each night to dedicate to television and tweeting. There are so many amazing shows that my poor DVR works overtime so I can keep up.

I even think of some of my favorite shows from before social media and wonder what it would have been like to live tweet during those. Charmed, in particular, is one of those shows that always had this huge active fanbase who were all very active on message boards and websites but Twitter would have given us instant access to each other as well as our favorite cast! I think that would have been an experience to cherish. I really hope they do have a reunion movie so we all get a chance to test my theory soon!

Look for me on social media, say HI and let me know what your favorite shows are, which you love to live tweet, and who you like tweeting with most (show accounts, actors, personalities, friends, etc).

If you follow me on Twitter or we are friends on Facebook, you know my favorites already. Pretty Little Liars, The Vampire Diaries, The Originals, Witches of East End, Once Upon A Time, Scorpion, Hot In Cleveland, The Exes, Scandal, Super Soul Sunday, and many other shows on OWN are just some of them. For reality TV, you really can’t beat BRAVO and that is actually where I first started interacting with people on twitter. Sometimes I feel like I was born to do this because it just comes so naturally to me.

If you ask me why I’m such a fan of Social TV, I’d say for all of the reasons above!



Lindsay Lohan Reality Series Coming to OWN Network

Lindsay Lohan Reality Series Coming to OWN Network (via NewsLook)

Video News by NewsLook The Oprah Winfrey Network announced it landed an exclusive interview with Lohan next month followed by an 8-part documentary series.

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Kourtney Kardashian and Scott Disick Getting Their Own Show

Kourtney Kardashian and Scott Disick Getting Their Own Show (via NewsLook)

Video News by NewsLook It’s another Kardashian-related reality show to add to your DVR of guilty pleasure television. It turns out Kourtney Kardashian and her long-term boyfriend and baby daddy, Scott Disick, have been offered their own spin off series…

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