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The world is just a little bit sadder today as an amazing woman who was an even more amazing actress and singer has passed on. We are deeply saddened to report Della Reese has passed at the age of 86.

Della Reese is a music icon, known the world over for her strong vocals, strong morals, and dozens of television and movie roles in productions like Touched By An Angel and Harlem Nights. Della passed Sunday evening.

via People:


“On behalf of her husband, Franklin Lett, and all her friends and family, I share with you the news that our beloved Della Reese has passed away peacefully at her California home last evening surrounded by love. She was an incredible wife, mother, grandmother, friend, and pastor, as well as an award-winning actress and singer. Through her life and work she touched and inspired the lives of millions of people,” her costar Roma Downey confirmed to PEOPLE in an exclusive statement.

“She was a mother to me and I had the privilege of working with her side by side for so many years on Touched By an Angel. I know heaven has a brand new angel this day. Della Reese will be forever in our hearts. Rest In Peace, sweet angel. We love you.”

Born Delloreese Patricia Early on July 6, 1931 in Detroit’s Black Bottom neighborhood, Reese began singing in public at just 6 years old at her local church, establishing her roots in gospel music. Her vocal talent flourished and by 13 she was tapped to perform with Mahalia Jackson’s gospel group, with whom she’d later tour.

She formed her own group, the Meditation Singers, in the late 1940s, but her exposure to jazz artists like Ella Fitzgerald and Sarah Vaughan sparked a desire to broaden her musical scope. Now using her famous stage name, she signed a deal with Jubilee Records in 1953, releasing six albums largely composed of jazz standards.

National fame would come in 1957 with the release of “And That Reminds Me,” a Top 20 hit and her first global seller.

She followed it up with “Don’t You Know?” — which would become her signature song, and a string of hits including “Not One Minute More, “And Now,” “Someday (You’ll Want Me to Want You),”  and “The Most Beautiful Words.”

In the late ’60s she began to expand her career from a jazz nightclub act to all-around entertainer by breaking into television. She became a familiar face on the small screen, securing guest spots on a host of shows, including The Mod Squad, The Love Boat, Sanford and Son, MacGyver, Night Court, and The Young and the Restless.

Her short-lived variety series, Della, debuted in 1969, and the following year she became the first black woman to co-host The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson. It was after a Tonight Show appearance in 1979 that Reese suffered a brain aneurysm that nearly claimed her life.

Reese became an ordained minister in the 1980s through the Christian New Thought branch known as Unity, leading her to found her own church, Understanding Principles for Better Living (also known as “UP Church”).

She would draw on her faith for her most famous acting role, playing the part “supervising angel” Tess on the CBS series Touched By an Angel beginning in 1994. Though the show was initially met with mixed reviews, it went on to become a huge success, running until 2003. Tess’ playful sarcasm and no-nonsense attitude added something of a humorous edge to the wholesome show, and she became its most beloved character.

Reese was plagued with health problems later in life, including a battle with diabetes which she blamed on poor diet and exercise. Following two appearances on the television show Signed, Sealed, Delivered in 2014, she retired from acting.

Rest in peace Della, we were all truly touched by angel.

 

Celebrity News

Just A Second! Jada Pinkett-Smith States August Alsina is Lying About Their Alleged Affair

Jada Pinkett-Smith is not here for the allegations singer, August Alsina, has made stating they were involved in a romantic and sexual affair approved by her husband, Will Smith. Jada, via her representatives, has completely denied an affair between she and August ever occurred. 

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august alsina jada pinkett-smith affair will smith

Jada Pinkett-Smith is not here for the allegations singer, August Alsina, has made stating they were involved in a romantic and sexual affair approved by her husband, Will Smith. Jada, via her representatives, has completely denied an affair between she and August ever occurred.

via TMZ:

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For years Will and Jada have denied any open relationship in their marriage for years however; in the latest August Alsina interview with Angela Yee, August admits that he was in a relationship with Jada Pinkett-Smith & that Will Smith gave him the blessing to do so. August also mentions he fell in love so hard that he had to walk away HURT because he realized they could never be together since Will & Jada are “life partners.” Thoughts? 👇🏿 ———— #CelebrityNews #CelebrityInterviews #AugustAlsina #AngelaYee redtabletalk #willsmith #jadapinkettsmith #openrelationship #openrelationships #talksandthoughts #mp #HeyMikey #HeyMikeyATL #MichaelJFanning #Mikey #atlantablogger #radiopersonality #mediapersonality

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August recently sat down with The Breakfast Club’s Angela Yee … claiming he had been in a relationship with Jada after being introduced to her by her son, Jaden, in 2015, and, according to him, it lasted quite some time.

AA was emotional as he explained how Jada is the only person he’s ever loved, and how he devoted himself to her and poured himself into their relationship for many years. However, Jada’s rep was quick to denounce his claim … saying it was “absolutely not true!!!”

August also insists Will gave their relationship his blessing. Will and Jada have been very public over the years about their open relationship, but her team says the whole thing is made up.

The singer claims walking away from his relationship with Jada when she “butchered” him and basically “killed” him … so it sounds for his part like he was pretty deeply in love with her.

August hinted at a sexual relationship with Jada last year, when he made some thinly-veiled references to her in his song, “Nunya.”

Now, August has spoken his piece about his alleged romantic past with Jada … but reps for Jada could not have been more clear about their stance.

august alsina jada pinkett-smith affair will smith

Honestly, we do not know what to believe. An affair between Jada and August is totally feasible, and if they are in an open relationship, not wrong. However, August does seem emotional and wounded, which to indicates he was in love with a woman who could not give him everything he wanted. At the end of the day, as he himself stated, Jada and Will are “life partners” and he cannot compare to a commitment like that. How about Jada just have August, herself, and Will at The Red Table Talk to clear the air. It would be a real hoot!

We will keep you posted as more on this story develops.

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Celebrity Interviews

Saweetie Talks Music & Black Lives Matter on Quibi’s Musicology w/ Tim Kash

‘Tap In’ and ‘My Type’ Rapper, Saweetie, sits down with Tim Kash and discusses her upcoming album, as well as the current headlines surrounding the speculation of lynchings and how she is involved in the Black Lives Matter movement.

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saweetie

‘Tap In’ and ‘My Type’ Rapper, Saweetie, sits down with Tim Kash and discusses her upcoming album, as well as the current headlines surrounding the speculation of lynchings and how she is involved in the Black Lives Matter movement.

tim kash saweetie interview

We are really glad to hear Saweetie’s forthcoming album is nearly here. She has been in the spotlight for a minute now and her fans (we are fans) deserve to hear a full body of work from her.

saweetie

More importantly, however, we love to hear she is doing her part in the Black Lives Matter movement. Someone with a platform as large as Saweetie’s is definitely needed in this good fight! These recent lynchings of Black men in various parts of the country being labeled as suicides is nothing short of nonsense and murder at the hands of white supremacists. Thanks Saweetie for speaking out!

You can catch Saweetie’s interview with Tim Kash below! Happy viewing!

 

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Celebrity Interviews

WATCH NOW: OWN’s Exclusive Press Roundtable w/ The Cast of “Greenleaf!”

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Greenleaf season 5

It Is hard to believe that after five seasons the upcoming season of OWN’s hit series, “Greenleaf,” will be its last. For years now we have watched this family and their megachurch grow, fall, change, and fight all in the name of family, dignity, and God.

Now, it is time to say goodbye, but before the season premiere airs tomorrow we were privileged to be able to chat with a few cast members of the Greenleaf during a Vimeo roundtable press conference! Yep Merle Dandridge (Grace Greenleaf), Keith Davidson (Bishop James Greenleaf), Lynn Whitfield (Pastor Mae Greenleaf), Lamman Rucker (Jacob Greenleaf), and Deborah Joy Winans (Charity Greenleaf), and the series’ creator/director, Craig Wright were all there and we got the details for this amazing final season!

Greenleaf season 5

Before the press conference we were allowed to screen the first two episodes of the upcoming season and needless to say they are riveting! You will find the Greenleaf Family collectively faces the end of an era with power and ownership of Calvary shifting to Harmony & Hope (H&H). Individually, Grace faces a tragic setback in her relationship with her estranged son, AJ, Kerissa and Jacob play chess as they move towards an impending divorce, Mae and The Bishop move forward with their wedding plans and the next chapter of their lives, and Charity has become the black sheep of her family, viewed as a traitor by her mother and sister while raging against Phillip Demars for spurning her and choosing Judy Whitmore. Whether the Greenleafs can pull it together to somehow save Calvary–and see their family through harrowing times–remains to be seen, but one thing is for sure, they won’t go down without a fight!

Greenleaf season 5

The cast was asked questions by various publications sand touched on how the show has helped humanize church leadership, which storylines besides their own are the most invested in, and even behind the scenes hijinks we never knew anything about.

You can catch the full interview by clicking this link https://vimeo.com/428978269 and using the following password: PressEvent4Greenleaf.

Greenleaf season 5

We hate to see Greenleaf ending, but the news of a spinoff has us glowing. We are sure this is not the last we have seen of this family. You all be sure to tune into season premiere of Greenleaf, tomorrow night, Tuesday at 9/8 PM EST/CTR!

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