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 If you believe
Within your heart

I just wrapped up my last six-week project in Chicago. Tried to extend six to seven or eight weeks, but to no avail. All good though as HOME was calling me. Now, I must find something else to do with myself – creatively speaking and, of course, revenue-wise. This, as main clients are getting ready for a summer break… and so many of them just aren’t outsourcing at the frequencies at which they once did before this so-called recession. In the meantime, I’ll ride the wave of what I have earned over the last month or so and outreach other account receivables that are due me and par for the course in this freelance life.

You'll know that no one can change
The path that you must go

So, as we COUNTDOWN to DIANA ROSS’ “More Today Than Yesterday” tour (http://www.etonline.com/news/2010/05/86927/index.html), I must point out a few synergy pieces. We got word that the legendary Lena Horne passed away at 92. You’ll recall, it is LENA who tells DIANA’s Dorothy in “The Wiz”: "We're always home, anywhere!" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NoCF1bCySn8 Paying the debt (and then some) Diana - now the only surviving principle cast member - had the chance to honor LENA and many others on whose shoulders she stands in her “Red Hot Rhythm & Blues” special in 1987: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yBg022fBO_8 


Believe what you feel
And know you're right because

Well, as NYC anticipates the experience of MISS ROSS in the sold-out Radio City Music Hall venue on May 19th, I got the chance to sing on the very stage. While at the storied venue where ROSS performed a couple of years ago (headlining DIVAS WITH HEART along with Patti LaBelle; Chaka Khan; and Gladys Knight - http://thelifeofriley.squarespace.com/rilys-blog/2008/5/11/divas-with-heart.html), I was simply sitting in the audience with friends – awaiting a special TV taping. Before I knew it, the warm-up lady (also a friend) invited me to sing "And I Am Telling You I’m Not Going" before the packed house of 5300. This, because she knows I LOVE all things DREAMGIRLS, JENNIFER HOLLIDAY & HUDSON, and DIVAS! Well, like an out-of-body experience, my inner-DIVO stepped right over the me that didn't realize my name had just been called onto that stage in front of the anticipating crowd. And it was only after I slipped back to my seat that I realized I didn't just lunge into a little ditty (something soft and sweet that my early-morning voice could accommodate, but I had performed "And I Am Telling You I'm Not Going" a cappella - in my risky (albeit strong) falsetto. The residue of the audience’s thunderous applause woke me up to what had just taken place, after I sat back down. And after the awesome TV show (our reason for being there. LOL!), I couldn't walk two steps without folks asking for my autograph or to take a picture or to meet their mother - one of whom said to me after I shouted out how good the taping that we’d all just seen was: "Sure! The show was good. But you made it exciting before the show even started!" LOL! COUNTDOWN TO YOU, DIANA! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZHNbB1hiYi4 


The time will come around
When you'll say it's yours

More than that moment, I got the chance to invite many friends to join me. From Ern to Norell to Michelle to Nichole to Chenoa. Then, my Brian came down from DC. Also, Ryan and Marcus got to enjoy the fun. My girl Karen and her buddy Bryna came along with my Michaela and Joi (from BET). Also from my recent BET work: Loren. I saw Miss Bevy Smith in the house! My Morehouse brothers Geoffrey Bennett (and his fiancé Beth) and Mario came. Dear friend Danielle and her buddy Doris came. And my girl from NABJ, Cheryl Burton, an anchor at WLS in Chicago, came along with her mother. GREAT MOTHER'S DAY GIFT, huh? AFTERWARDS: Lunch at Armani Ristorante. Nichole, Ern, Brian, Michelle, Danielle, Chenoa, Pam, Doris, et al. wanted to celebrate our wonderful morning. So, we felt it required something more than our old standby BBQ. And we ran into Armani’s concierge Mechel, our dear friend who used to own Maroon’s Restaurant. Liquid lunch was good. The food itself was great. And the company was unparalleled. Then, I got to hang out at Hudson Hotel with Brian until Ant got off work. We then joined his work buddy Joi and his trainer Jen for karaoke. Of course, I did an encore presentation of “And I Am Telling You I’m Not Going”. This, since Ant and the crew didn’t get to come to the show earlier.  And the soap opera fan that I am was SO EXCITED to see the characters Craig Montgomery and Rosanna Cabot in the 'karaoke' house! Well, their names are actually Jon Linstrom and Cady McClain. But they will always be Craig and Rosanna to me. Ant and I then did a nightcap at CAFETERIA  & MERCHANTS NYC dessert. GOOD FRIDAY!

Believe that you can go home
Believe you can float on air

When I first got back from Chicago, Ant and I had a lazy weekend. We did go to Mara & Tommie's place for the Mayweather Fight with Ern. Watching that boxing match reminded me that 'boxing' is the muse for this DIANA special: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H3ZLbtWEQ54. On another day that weekend, we did it low-maintenance: Red Lobster. Remake of "Nightmare on Elm Street". Super WAL MART for shower curtain, some groceries, etc. AC unit! LAZY and productive!!!


Then click your heels three times
If you believe

One day, I stumbled into buddy Robert in Times Square while waiting on Ant to get off work. Robert & I enjoyed a lite bite, cocktail or two (a la Cinco de Mayo), and caught up at Zanzibar in Hell's Kitchen NYC (www.zanzibarnyc.com). Afterwards, Ant and I went to our buddy Seitu's birthday set. It took place on the rooftop of a high-rise building near the Lincoln Tunnel. Great to see friends Jamar, Ryan; Nina, our diva from The Apollo Theatre; Toyce, et al. Always a good time with Seitu and the gang.

Then you'll be there
That's why I want you to

This past weekend, Ant and I enjoyed a fun night. It was Common at Highline Ballroom (including a surprise appearance by his upcoming film's co-star Queen Latifah). They are both featured in “Just Wright” (www.foxsearchlight.com/justwright/) along with Phylicia Rashad and Pam Grier.

Believe in yourself
Right from the start

This, after we spent the afternoon with buddies Brian and Caleb. We’re all close via the National Association of Black Journalists. They brought their buddy Regine – also NABJ – into the mix. You'll recall, Brian and I have been best buddies from last April in DC to the time we spent in L.A. while both out there on business. Then, Ant hosted Brian and his family in Denver over Christmas. This time, in addition to our Radio City outing, we all hung out atop The Hudson Hotel's Sky Terrace. Then, we did a birthday meal for Brian at Delta Grill. GOOD TIMES! Ant and I did a little karaoke where we enjoyed some quality time with our “karaoke Cathy” who is always looking out for us.

Believe in the magic
Right there in your heart

SHOUT OUT to my NABJ sister Marcie Eanes who is riding high on the release of her first book of poetry “Sensual Sounds”. It is a thought-provoking collection designed to encourage and inspire readers to cherish intimate relationships. In addition to being a poet, she is a journalist who has written for numerous publications and has shared her poetry in a variety of venues across the nation. Marcie is doing her thing! CONGRATS, MARCIE!

Go ahead believe all these things
Not because I told you to

Ant and I are off to Atlanta this weekend to finally celebrate my nephew Herman’s graduation from my alma mater Morehouse. Noot – I call him – is poised to get that degree. I am such a PROUD UNCLE. He has stayed with Ant and me over the last two summers as he interned at HBO. And we have had some good times. Now, he’ll head up to New York City and make it on his own. He will be a marketing analyst for American Express. It will be great to welcome him – fully – to this brotherhood, or nation – if you will, of MOREHOUSE MEN!

Before leaving for Noot’s graduation, Nichole and I met for lunch at Cafeteria. Afterwards, Ant and I got to see Sabrina, her mother, and son before heading down to The Village to Desire to hang out with Theo, Ra-Fael De-Blanco, and author of “Nick, Dontae, Gus, & Jack”, Nigel Barto. Lots of laughs but little sleep before our flight.  

But believe in yourself
If you believe in yourself

On one night, I went to Copper Smith’s and ran into summer-concert-companion Shani as well as several of Ant’s ‘Wendy’ colleagues. This, before my L.A. buddy Herndon Davis shared his latest tome “Repackaged Common Sense” with me. It’s A New Age Path to Career and Business Success. From there, joined Ant & his colleague J at Planet Rose Karaoke Lounge to sing a happy-hour concert. Then, Ant & I joined his sister-friend (from Denver by way of France) Sabrina. After we picked her up at her east side hotel, we escorted her to karaoke. Then, we enjoyed a late dinner at Cafeteria. She was present the night Ant & I met December 2005. So, this was a full circle night!

Just believe in yourself
As I believe in you


Donation Link:  http://aidswalknewyork2010.kintera.org/michaelkwatts



Please sponsor me for AIDS Walk New York!


Dear Friend,


I have registered for AIDS Walk New York and am very excited about the event! I want to do as much as I can to make a difference in the lives of people living with HIV and AIDS. I have set an ambitious fundraising goal and I need your help in order to reach it!


Link to my personal donation page:  http://aidswalknewyork2010.kintera.org/michaelkwatts



AIDS Walk New York, the world’s largest AIDS fundraising event, benefits GMHC and over 30 other tri-state area AIDS service organizations. GMHC is the nation’s oldest and most comprehensive AIDS service organization, serving approximately 15,000 people living with HIV and AIDS and their families each year, and countless more through its prevention and advocacy work locally and nationally.


Even though there has been success with drug treatments that are prolonging some people's lives, they don't work for everyone. These treatments can also take their toll physically, and for many cause awful side-effects. I am also concerned that so many young people in New York City are getting infected. There is a dire need for comprehensive prevention programs and services that target youth in their language. And above all, there is still no cure in sight.


I would really appreciate your help. Please sponsor me for AIDS Walk New York. Just click on the link below to visit my personal fundraising Web page. It’s fast, easy, and safe to make a donation online with a credit card, debit card, or paypal! After making your donation, you may be able to double your donation with a matching gift! Please consult your human resources department, or use the matching gift search engine on the AIDS Walk New York website, to find out if your company has a matching gift program!


Thank you for supporting AIDS Walk New York and for helping to put an end to this epidemic.


Much Love,

Michael K. Watts


Follow This Link to visit my personal web page and help me in my efforts to support AIDS Walk New York



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