‘Mob Wives’ Drita D’Avanzo On Jay Z, Solange Knowles Elevator Fight

By Alicia Sparks

I’d begin this post by asking, “Have we set a double standard when it comes to men hitting women versus women hitting men?”, but I think we all know the answer to that question is a big ol’ obvious “Yes,” and I believe the recent beatdown Solange Knowles delivered to her brother-in-law Jay Z is the latest spotlight example.

Although the family has released a statement regarding the situation, theories about the situation (i.e. why Solange went off on Jay Z that night) continue to abound.

We might never know the real story, and in my opinion, that’s not relevant.

What is relevant is that Solange pushed, slapped, punched, kicked, and maybe even scratched (who knows?) her brother-in-law, and people are more interested in why it happened than why she’s gotten away with it.

One person who did point out the double-standard, though, is Drita D’Avanzo.

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Eminem Apologizes to His Mother in New Song ‘Headlights’

By Alicia Sparks

Paul Simon might’ve been right when he predicted Eminem would eventually regret airing all his family’s dirty laundry in his songs — some of the most famous including his first hit, “My Name Is” and “Cleaning Out My Closet.”

One of his most common punching bags? His mother, Debbie Mathers.

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20 Stories of Musicians Who Promote Hope, Happiness, and Wellness

By Alicia Sparks

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A few weeks ago, I asked you about your favorite happy song.

(If you missed it, feel free to head over to What’s YOUR Favorite Happy Song? and share with us!)

However, some musicians aren’t ALL about the music; whether it’s participating (or launching) a campaign or sharing their own success stories, many use their fame to spread happiness and wellness beyond just an upbeat tune.

This week, let’s take a look back at some of the musicians who take happiness and hope to an entirely different level.

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Every BODY Is Different: Lessons From Amy Poehler

By Alicia Sparks

Oh, Amy Poehler, how I love thee.

I won’t count the ways, but I will share this example: a video from Poehler’s YouTube channel, Amy Poehler’s Smart Girls.

The video is titled “Bodies: Ask Amy” and it begins with Amy reading a letter from one of her fans:

“Dear Amy,

What advice would you give to a young woman with body issues? I’ve never been happy with my body and I feel like it’s preventing me from loving myself.

Love Always,

Mary Kate”

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5 Ways to Get Your Creative Juices Flowing Again

By Alicia Sparks

5ways


“Creativity is what helps me escape a lot of my inner demons.” — Demi Lovato

I’m a writer.

As such, I spend a lot of time starting at blank Word documents (or paper, because I’m old skool like that).

If you haven’t guessed yet, sometimes my creative juices run dry and, if you’re a creative person, I’m sure yours do, too.

So, how do we get them flowing again? How do we make that stagnant mud puddle — you know, the one that just kind of hangs around the corner and never really sinks into the drainage system — gush like Niagara Falls?

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Flaws Are OK: Lessons From Lorde

By Alicia Sparks

Did you make it to Chile’s Lollapalooza festival last month?

No?

Neither did I, but I’m sure it was a hit. With acts like Red Hot Chili Peppers, Sound Garden, and Arcade Fire, how could it have not been?

Anyway, now that we’re up to speed, another talent who graced the stage in Chile was New Zealand’s latest hit maker, Lorde.

Lorde — the 17-year-old singer-songwriter behind hits “Royals” and “Team” — found two distinctly different photos of herself from the event — one featuring her with fresh, flawless skin, and the other showing her blemishes.

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What’s YOUR Favorite Happy Song?

By Alicia Sparks

Listen to the Music

I have a friend whom I consider my musical soulmate, and sometimes we’ll randomly share a tune with each other to either bring back memories (we’re around the same age, so we were going through some of life’s common milestones around the same time) or just see what the other thinks of it.

A few months ago, he asked me about my favorite go-to happy song, and without hesitation I answered “Listen to the Music” by The Doobie Brothers.

(I don’t know why, but there’s just always been something about that song that plucks my serotonin, even when I was a child.)

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Reader Response: The Different Story of Celebrity Overdoses

By Alicia Sparks

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Some of you will remember, actor Philip Seymour Hoffman died from a heroin overdose in February 2014.

I wrote about his death, expressing my sorrow (especially because he’d been doing so well, or seemed to be, last year), and it sparked an interesting conversation about how we react to celebrity drug overdoses compared to how we react to “Regular Joe” overdoses.

(By “we,” I mean the public — not the media.)

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Andre 3000 As Hendrix in ‘Jimi: All Is By My Side’ Biopic

By Alicia Sparks

The new Jimi Hendrix biopic, Jimi: All Is By My Side, premiered at South by Southwest (SXSW) 2014, apparently to rave reviews.

Actually, its star — Andre 3000 of Outkast, who reportedly practiced the guitar six hours a day to prep for the film — is receiving most of the glory.

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Need a Little Push? Reality Check? 10 Celebrity Quotes On Success

By Alicia Sparks

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Look, we all know some people become celebrities by accident (no offense), and others have no business being celebrities (in the, you know, “look at you, being all full of talent and class”-sense).

However, some celebrities do have their footing in the soils of success (or, at least, a grasp on what it truly means), and maybe one or two of these quotes could strike a chord with you.

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