Empire Premiering Jan 2015 on Fox

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The Screening of the Pilot for Empire on Fox at Crosby St Hotel NYC shot by Anthony DeCosmo of KatieSheaDesign  LifeOnFiOS

FOX Publicity hosted a Tastemaker event for their new series Empire on 10/27 in New York at the Crosby St Hotel’s screening room.  Katie Shea Design’s Kathleen DeCosmo  and Anthony DeCosmo ( Social Media Influencers and Digital Correspondents) as well as Influencer Glen Gilmore attended as a guests of Fox and Verizon LifeOnFiOS Brand Ambassadors.

Empire First Look trailer

The new series starring Terrence Howard and Taraji P. Henson centers around a music mogul and his family. The mogul, played by Terrence Howard is ready to pass his company on to one of his children after learning of a fatal illness. However his plans are ruined when his ex-wife Cookie (Taraji P. Henson) returns from prison and wants half of the empire back.

The drama will also star Gabourey Sidibe and Courtney Love. The original soundtrack was also written and produced by Timbaland. Empire is set to premiere on Fox in January. – See more

Lee Daniels warmly welcomed all of us guests and made a friendly introduction of producer Danny Strong (his partner in crime), all of Empire’s producers and cast members Terrence Howard who plays (Lucious Lyon ) and Taraji P. Henson (Cookie Lyon) also present for the screening.

The gamut of emotions this screening evoked ranged from deep empathy, sympathy, rage and lots of humor.  The story touches on so many real life family issues that people are working out and/or struggling with every day.

Terrence Howard and Taraji P. Henson give stunning performances!

Some important and telling quotes from the screening:

“Show Me Your Soul in This Music” ~ Lucious Lyon

“ Music Saved My Life” ~ Lucious Lyon

“I Gotch You” ~ Cookie Lyon

“ I Am Here to Get Whats Mine”  ~ Cookie Lyon

“17 Years Later and You Are Still Beautiful”  ~ Lucious Lyon

“Wasting Your Talent on Bitches and Booze” ~ Lucious Lyon

“I Just Want To Be Good Enough” ~ Jamal Lyon

A reception and conversation with the Executive producers immediately followed the screening of the pilot.

Producers:

Lee Daniels  also on IMDb

Danny Strong also on IMDb

Brian Grazer also on IMDb

Ilene Chaiken also on IMDb

Francie Calfo also in IMDb

I believe Fox has a hit on their hands!!!  Cannot wait until January!

Official Twitter for Empire: @EmpireFOX  Official Hashtag  #Empire

**I am a member of #LifeOnFiOS – a selected team of influencers for Verizon who love the FiOS service. Compensation was provided and opinions are, as always my own.

Many Thanks to Fox and Verizon #LifeOnFiOS!

A Redneck Riviera Lunch

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I woke up to multiple emergency alarms blaring simultaneously all over my hotel room.

A tornado warning issued for exactly the location I was staying in Charlotte N.C. I quickly dressed and kept vigilant all through a very long half hour long warning.

I left the television on as I worked to stay informed of anymore weather emergencies possibly coming into the area.

I am glad I kept on the TV otherwise I wouldn’t have had the pleasure of meeting country singer John Rich or having the opportunity to view Charlotte Today WCNC. The show was packed with so many interesting topics, one of which was an interview with John Rich that caught my attention.

Charlotte Today

John’s clothing line “Redneck Riviera” was being discussed. I learned “Redneck Riviera is not just a brand, it represents the folks in this country who work hard and play harder!”

The Redneck Riviera gear was being made available at Whiskey River Charlotte May 15th Along with appearances by John Rich noon and in the evening.

I decided to have a working lunch down at the Whiskey River Charlotte. My lunch selection was a delicious dish of Irish potatoes paired with some great country music!

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Whiskey River Charlotte has delicious food, warm, friendly staff and a great vibe!

I have not been very much of a country music fan but I think today’s lunch adventure has turned the tides for this Motown gal!

Bumping into John and chatting with him a bit has also made me one of his new fans.

If it wasn’t for the tornado warnings I never would’ve met all the wonderful people in Charlotte, NC.

Blessings come via some strange ways.

Posted on the Road in North Carolina.
Music Videos will be posted here Soon!

Images shot with a Verizon GalaxyS5 #VZWBuzz

Verizon Wireless Lifestyle Blogger Program

Happy Mother’s Day: A Musical Tribute

Happy Mother's Day by Visual Poetics CURATED  by  Katie Shea Design

Raised by a single mother, Kevin Durant is the NBA’s 2013-14 Most Valuable Player.

Kevin Durant’s powerful, emotional MVP acceptance speech went viral impacting the hearts of so many.

Kevin recounted that he fell in love with basketball in the second grade.

Kevin shared his memory of the little family’s first apartment. “No bed, no furniture.  We sat in the living room and hugged.  We felt like we made it!”

This video very personally touched my heart as well as this recently released single “Happy Mother’s Day” by Visual Poetics:

Happy Mother's Day by Visual Poetics

It is truly poetic that this “Happy Mother’s Day” single was released just a few days before Kevin Durant’s beautiful tribute to his single mother.

Kevin’s tribute to his mom depicts exactly what this Mother’s Day single is expressing musically.

Kevin praised his mother, honoring her and all that she did for him and his brother:

“YOU made us believe,

kept us off the street,

put clothes on our back

food on the table

went to sleep hungry.

You sacrificed for us

YOUR the real MVP

Symbolic image of a man who plays basketball

“Happy Mother’s Day” by Visual Poetics speaks of the single mom’s struggles, the feelings of the fatherless child and the encouragement that is felt by the strength spoken and exemplified by a single mom.

So uncannily parallel with Kevin Durant’s emotional acceptance speech to this recently released “Happy Mother’s Day” single.

Join me in congratulating Kevin Durant’s Mom Wanda Pratt in accomplishing so much as a single mother and making her son proud to call her Mom.

I want to invite you to also listen to this “Happy Mother’s Day” single by Visual Poetics:

Happy Mother's Day Sound Cloud by Visual Poetics

 Happy Mother’s Day

To every person that has been a MOM to someone!

 

About the Artist Visual Poetics:

VISUAL POETICS – HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY [@VISUALPOETICS]

Visual Poetics is the founding member and long time producer of the underground group known as Little Egypt. Releasing several albums and touring extensively, Little Egypt became known for combining that raw Brooklyn Hip-Hop stage energy with conscious level lyrics.

In particular, Visual Poetics’ style is that of an old school storyteller.  Weaving vivid images with complex metaphors, Vis (pronounced Viz) has been known to resurface from time to time dropping political pieces and other collaborative efforts over the past few years.

This chapter, Happy Mother’s Day, includes heavy production work from Compton’s own multitalented Trae Sevn and Khordz (of Little Egypt) combined with the smooth sounds of soulful singer/lyricist Madd Mary (look out!) for this heartfelt shout out and dedication to single parents worldwide.

Saying Goodbye with Google Hangouts

Saying Goodbye with Google Hangouts by Katie Shea Design #KatieSheaDesign

My husband and I had flown down to Florida April 2013 to spend some time with his Dad. My father in law had been battling prostate cancer for over a decade and it was getting worse.

We had noticed his accelerated deterioration over the previous months  on our Google Hangout chats.

We met online very regularly with him and his wife Laura.  We were able to spend time with him and discern that indeed the doctor’s prognosis was pretty accurate and he did not have much time left as reported.

We figured that we would be flying down frequently to visit as his disease progressed.

When we arrived we soon realized that our Dad’s health was much more further along than even the Google Hangouts had revealed.

The nurse that attended my father in law took me aside quietly and let me know that he had been earnestly awaiting his son’s arrival.  She also gave me her opinion that he was “waiting” to see his son.  I got the shivers as she communicated what I knew was very near.

My father in law’s health declined rapidly within 24 hours of that conversation.

Hospice was called in and set up bedside care around the clock.  This all happened within three days of our arrival to visit him.

We kept in constant communication with our three grown children through Google Hangouts and text messaging .

Three days passed with Hospice tending to my father in law.  Hospice decided that his passing did not seem to be imminent so they removed their care for the time being and were on standby.

My father in law became cognitive for a very small burst.  We had the Hospice music therapist come by and we all had a music jam session that seemed to brighten him up for a short bit.

My Father in law was “Music” a professional Jazz musician, educator and an author:

Emile graduated from the Brooklyn Conservatory of Music. He later earned a Masters of Music Ed at New Jersey City University. Emile De Cosmo has been active as a teacher, musician, and jazz clinician for over 50 years. Playing woodwind instruments, he has freelanced in the New York area with many noted musicians on TV and radio commercial sound tracks, club dates, concerts, and shows. Formerly an Adjunct Professor of Jazz Improvisation at New Jersey City University, an Applied Music instructor at New Jersey City University and Farleigh Dickinson University, Concert/Marching /Jazz Band Director at Fort Lee High School, Artist in Residence/Teacher /Mentor for the Jersey City school district and author of 25 books on Jazz improvisation including the Polytonal Rhythm Series” Read

The jam session was his very last.  My husband picked his dad up and put him to bed that night.  His condition worsened and Hospice was called to come back and evaluate.

The very kind Hospice nurse took me aside and asked me if there was anybody that my father in law could possibly be waiting for.  I knew exactly what she meant.  I let her know that it could possibly be his grandchildren.

We had kept our children very informed of their grandfather’s condition and they were on standby ready to book flights at a moments notice.

It was very difficult to tell them exactly when to get on the plane since my father in law’s health had wavered over the time we were there.

My husband and I had prepared for the possibility that his dad could pass very quickly and that our children might not be able to arrive in time to see their grandfather in person one last time.

We had all of our children, cousins and friends connected on Google Hangouts in the event we needed to have an emergency meeting.

We gathered some family members to my in law’s home, connected with our children on Google Hangout and had family time with my father in law.

My father in law was in a semi conscious state so we brought my husband’s tablet to his bedside.  We placed the tablet right beside him as our children spoke to him loving words, entertained him wearing crazy hats and mustaches, shared anecdotes of times gone by and impersonated their grandfather which seemed to rally him to a moment of consciousness.  His mouth formed the words “I Love You” to his grandchildren.  Time stopped for all of us in the room and on Google Hangouts.  Our children all told their grandfather how much they loved him and how much he meant to them all of their lives.  They told him to rest and he will always be alive in their hearts.  They blew kisses to him as he tried so very hard to open his eyes one last time to say goodbye.

My father in law passed nine hours later ( May 3rd, 2013) peacefully surrounded by his devoted wife Laura, my husband, my sister in law and myself.

My husband and I are so grateful for the technology that enabled us to work remotely so we had the ability to stay with my father in law in his last several weeks of life.

We are very grateful for Google Hangouts that gave our children the ability to visit with their grandfather and spend time with him in his last hours of life.

What is Google Hangouts:

If you have never used Google Hangouts, it’s a very powerful messaging tool.

Hangouts lets you send messages, emoji, photos, and start video calls with your friends and family. You can start a Hangout from Gmail, Google+, your Android or iOS device, or with the Chrome extension.e.

It’s also a powerful video capturing tool.

You can turn any Hangout into a live video call with up to 10 people. Then turn that video call into a recording and make it publicly available on Google+ or your YouTube channel.

You can even share your screen with the audience if you need to demonstrate any of your products or services.

Pro tip: If you share the video on YouTube, you can download the mp4 file of the recording. This makes it easy for you to do some light editing or add open/end slates to your video.

You can then re-upload the edited video onto another YouTube channel or the same one and use that video to share with your customers.

 

 

Living in the Moment “Just Like Him”.

Living in the Moment by Katie Shea Design

“Experience this moment to its fullest.” ~Zen Proverb #quotes

Too often as parents we rush through the days, years then decades with our children and wake up one day with not children… but adults.

My husband and I decided long ago that spending time with our children was one of our top priorities always.  We have maintained that priority even into adulthood with all three of our children and our son in law as well.

There was a very popular song in the 1970’s that I know many of us Baby Boomers sang with our transistor radios, 45’s and cassette recorders. While we sang the song I am sure we did not realize what exactly we were saying as  we belted it out over and over again.

My husband, being a professional musician was very aware of the lyrics to songs as he also sang them over and over during his many gigs in the 70’s and 80’s.

So in the beginnings of our courtship we sat with our cup of coffee in hand in our third floor walk-up and discussed what our children would potentially look like, who they would take after etc..

Music was always one of the springboards of conversation for us and continues to be a very powerful voice for all generations.

While discussing our future as potential parents, my husband referenced the popular song Cat’s in the Cradle“.  He expressed his goal to me that he wanted to be the father that always had time for his children.  When they grew up they would always have time for him because he would have taught them with his actions and his words that they were and are always his priority.

The image above is my husband spending time with our 26 year old son who on that particular day invited us to come along on his photo shoot just to spend time with us as we always have done with him.  He invites us into his world and shares his life with us even as an adult living on his own.  My husband has succeeded in his goal as being the father he always wanted to be and not the father in the song “Cat’s in the Cradle

Cat’s in the Cradle is a 1974 folk rock song by Harry Chapin from the album Verities & Balderdash. The single topped the Billboard Hot 100 in December 1974. As Chapin’s only No. 1 hit song, it became the best known of his work and a staple for folk rock music.

The song is told in first-person by a father who is too busy to spend time with his son. Though the son asks him to join in childhood activities, the father always responds with little more than vague promises of spending time together in the ‘future’. While wishing to spend time with his father, the son starts to model himself on his father’s behaviour, hence the verse wishing to be “just like him.” The final two verses reverse the roles, where the father asks his grown-up son to spend time with him after his graduation, and then later come to visit, but the son responds that he is now too busy to find the time for his father. The father then reflects that they are both alike, saying “my boy was just like me.”

Image shot with a Verizon Samsung Galaxy Camera  #VZWBuzz

Verizon Wireless Lifestyle Blogger Program