The Year of Good Vibes Only

Photo Credit: Dreamgirl Photography

 

Since the start of the Dreamworld, there’s been a constant theme of searching for my passion and ultimate happiness, while inspiring others and sharing success stories.  It’s taken several years, but I’ve finally discovered that it is hard searching for myself and inspiring all of you at the same time.   This explains my frequent breaks from blogging.  At some point, I needed to take my own advice, right?  Well, I did…and it worked! Continue reading

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Celebrities Can Dream Too!

Hello, world!  Thank you, once again, for visiting my Dreamworld.  I hope that everyone had a safe and enjoyable Christmas with family and friends (and lots of food)!  In keeping with the holiday spirit a.k.a. the warm and fuzzies,  I want to highlight something that makes me warm to the core…babies!  Ok, so have you ever wondered what happens AFTER a celebrity makes it or what their new set of goals might be once they actually reach celebrity status?!  I do all the time!  So, when I see women on the come-up or already in the business who are starting families, I loooove it!  To think that they have the fame, the money, the world at their fingertips and it comes back to the basics of starting a family…that’s what it’s all about.  Here’s something to just make you smile and for me to say congrats to the new mommies in the spotlight and the mommies-to-be!  Enjoy 🙂

Parents-to-be Wiz Khalifa and Amber Rose, Source: US Magazine

Parents-to-be Wiz Khalifa and Amber Rose, Source: US Magazine

Lola Monroe and Los Unveil Pregnancy, Source: Instagram

Lola Monroe and Los Unveil Pregnancy, Source: Instagram

Tamera Mowry-Housley and Husband Adam Housley, Source: People

Tamera Mowry-Housley and Husband Adam Housley recently welcomed their new baby son to the world. Source: People

Daniella Sig

Jonathas, from NBC’s, “The Voice”, Tells All to the Dreamworld!

If you are a fan of NBC’s The Voice, then the name Jonathas will certainly ring some bells.  He was the soulful powerhouse from Season 2 who was cut in the final battle round, just before the ultimate live competition.  Jonathas was a fan favorite, bringing something new to the competition…a Brazilian who could sing Usher’s U Got it Bad better than Usher himself (yes, I said it!).  For those that aren’t as familiar, Jonathas migrated to the United States on a boat for over a month with his mother at the age of four.  Growing up poor, music is what he turned to at a young age and it has become the one thing that could help provide for his family.  Now living in Texas at the age of 24, he has a wife and two kids and drops his debut album, Numb, which is slated to be something that the R&B game needs.  Check out my interview with Jonathas and see what he has to say about his upcoming album, his migration to the U.S. and choosing team Christina on The Voice.

Tell me about your journey from Brazil to the U.S.

I came to the States when I was about 4 or 5 years old.  I was on a cruise ship with me and my older brother and my mom was pregnant with my younger brother.  We came to the States super young and Austin was one of the first stops we made.  Singing was always a part of my life…I tried to enter as many things as I could; we grew up really poor so money was always a situation and we tried to scramble around and get into as many free things and contests as we could.

At what point did you know that singing was a passion and something that you were going to follow for the long haul?

I gotta say when I was probably in Middle School, there was a big show that I did and I lead the choir and had these big solos and I knew from there exactly what I wanted to do. I had to grow up and learn everything on my own [including] all the studio stuff, so I just started taking it to the next level.  Middle School was really it…not only was I like, “I can do this” but I love to do it and I love to hear the fans yell. It was what I wanted ever since I was young.

Even though this is your passion, it’s obviously a way for you to provide for your family.  Given the struggle that you’ve had early on in life, does that add any extra pressure to succeed?

Yes, absolutely!  I make a little money here and there, but I also work part-time.  I’m 24 hours, fully committed to this music thing because that’s what I do and that’s what I love to do and it’s what I’m gonna do until I’m where I want to be, but even now it’s tough.  You go onto a show like The Voice and you get cut where you did and you get back home and people had all these expectations, family as well.  It was tough.  Having to pick it up from there, it was tough.  I had to search deep and find myself and that’s where Numb came from.

What can fans expect from your upcoming album, Numb?

Numb is real, it’s something that I had to step out of where I was and I had to find myself and I had to do my own soul searching.  It was the first time I was dealing with another writer that was writing something for me and that was big because I’m real picky when it comes to my music and I like things a certain style.  I really opened up for this project.  I had a writer for my first single, Written in Stone, who was Karen Rodriguez.  It’s me thinking, it’s me searching and I’m still finding my voice.

You have an amazing voice!  Where do you get your main inspiration from?

That’s a good question!  I never grew up with any vocal coaching, but I did grow up with my heros like Usher.  When Ne-Yo first broke out as an artist, that’s when it struck me.  Ne-Yo was one of my biggest inspirations and not just as an artist, but as a songwriter and having to work behind the scenes and see everybody else get the fame and high accolades.  Then he comes out and BOOM, he’s the man!  I really kept that in mind and stayed focus.  I really follow up on the artists that I have a lot of respect for and it keeps me in line with my music.  Nowadays, a lot of things are going Pop and it’s rare that you hear R&B on the radio.  What I don’t want to do is reject what I have now and where my voice is best at and go do the Pop; I want to stick with what I love and what I do best and that’s R&B.

Did you get a chance to work with Ne-Yo?

I didn’t and it kinda sucks because I ended up going with team Christina and Ne-Yo was a mentor on Cee-Lo’s team.  But, everything happens for a reason and hopefully things come up after this project is released.

You chose team Christina, was that something that you did on your own and if so, what was the ultimate deciding factor?

I did choose her on my own, but I didn’t have intentions of choosing her…I don’t even think they give you more than a minute to decide.  I went into the competition saying I wanted to go with team Cee-Lo.  He’s another artist that I have a lot of respect for.  I felt like Christina wanted to fight for me more and when she was looking at me and talking to me I just really felt like she wanted to connect with me as a artist and elevate what I had to the next level.

Were you happy with your decision at the end of it?

That’s a tough question to ask.  I can say yes and I’m really thankful for everything she’s done for me, but at the same time did I make the right decision? That’s a question I ask myself all of the time.  Everything does happen for a reason and maybe it just wasn’t meant to be quite yet and maybe there’s something bigger for me out there.

What advice can you offer up-and-coming artists who are hustling just like you in this industry?

The best thing that I can say is, if you have a dream, never throw it away just because someone tells you that you can’t do it or someone tries to bring your down.  You can do anything that you put your mind to, you just have to go out there and do it and take chances.  You have to leave it all on the line and try your best every single time.  Your work ethic is one of the most important things.  This music business, it sucks to say, but it’s grimy.  You have to hustle to get into where you need to…when you’re hustling, you have to have a work ethic and you have to put in work.

How can fans support you?

You can go anywhere from iTunes to Amazon or my website, IknowJonathas.com.

Any last words for your fans?

I hope everyone is on board; I’ve been working really hard on this project.  I’m here for them and I hope they’re here for me!

Thank you for visiting the Dreamworld and I hope that Jonathas’ story has inspired everyone to keep pushing!  Check out this video of Jonathas singing Usher’s U Got it Bad onNBC’s The Voice and be sure to buy his new album, Numb!

My Family & MTV…How They Crossed Paths

Photo by Lula Fotis

When you know where he’s come from…you’d never think it would be easy for him to succeed in this world.  Born and raised in the Bronx, NY, Jonathan is 1 of 6 siblings and is beginning to find his way.  At a young age, he and his brothers and sisters lost their father (my Uncle) in what is still an unsolved murder.  Some odd years later, they would lose their mother.  Being raised by my grandparents, he has managed to graduate high school and get a full scholarship to Franklin & Marshall, where he won the prestigious award for the best documentary in his class.  It amazes me that he possesses so much resilience, determination and passion after everything that he has endured.  He probably doesn’t even know it, but he is one of my light sources.  To know that my baby cousin (not so baby anymore) is so strong…there’s never an excuse for me to not push hard as well.

Now, onto the exciting news!  Jonathan has managed to WOW the big-wigs and he was the winner of MTV’s Intern Army Mission.  In short, a selected few who made the cut, were able to compete for the number one spot and win a fully paid trip to the VMA’s in LA!  Each intern had to make gorilla style videos promoting the VMA’s and were judged on overall creativity (I’ve posted one of his mission videos below).  YES!  My baby cousin (I gotta stop saying that) came out on top!!!  I know for a fact that many people, young and old, can learn so much from this brilliant soul, so I wanted to pick Jonathan’s brain so that others could get an idea of how he got to where he is now!

Photo by Will Sampson

Briefly explain what you actually do for MTV.

So I interned with TV Land. I did a lot of editing and trimming of a variety of sitcoms such as Everybody Loves Raymond, The Nanny, and many other sitcoms in order to create promos. I resized and placed logos on these promos and sent them to be approved and aired. I pulled and recorded footage onto tapes. I also transferred footage from these tapes onto computers which I cut and put onto TV Land’s server for future use. I also attended audio/video sessions and performed production runs to deliver materials.  I even shadowed current staff Production Assistants and performed any production related duties needed for shoots, edit/audio sessions,or delivery.

What was the challenge that you had to succeed in, in order to win the internship?

Well besides overcoming the stress of the short deadline we were given for each mission, I had to really impose myself into large crowds, and really persuade new yorkers ( and you know how they can be) to listen to me for a second, and hear what I had to say. Although a struggle, I just brought forth my charisma and that took the crowds.

What did the prize include?

The prizes were: The Grand Prize winner (1st place) won a free paid trip to the Video Music Awards out in LA. That included a free flight, hotel, and tickets to the VMA’s, along with one friend.  The contest included 5 missions and we were judged overall on consistent creativity. Each round had a first place winner, and then all five were judged. MTV hires about 500 interns throughout all their networks, and all of these were a possible candidate for this contest.

What does this mean for your future affiliation with MTV? Does it guarantee an internship?

This win only proved to Viacom that I am a strong and hardworking individual. At the end of my internship, I was ecstatic to find out that I had a job offer after graduation. I am still keeping my options open, but this was an amazing offer.

How did you get such an awesome opportunity to work at MTV?

I got the job at TV Land through my scholarship program known as the Posse foundation.  A program that was recognized by president Obama, they recruit young/diverse leaders throughout several major cities, and put them in top liberal art schools. This program has a huge and very powerful network of companies and jobs, whom all love working with Posse students.

What are your long-term goals?

My long-term goals, besides get a job, is to be successful in anything I choose to do. Always be a thinker and find new ways to innovate. I want to direct films, and hopefully make movies. Even direct and write my own TV Series is another option. Whichever happens, I know for sure I want to show my experiences through the scope of film and help others tell their story when their voice is unheard.

How do you think you managed to find so much success, despite your tragedies/hardships in life?

I think I find my successes in just staying focused on the prize. What I went through was tough, and those tough things start to wear you down, but when there’s motivation for something bigger and better, then you refuse to be pulled down. Life doesn’t have to be sad or angry. I try to always focus on the best side of things which I guess makes me optimistic. And also realizing that patience is important keeps me focused. It’s easy to just give up because it doesn’t work out immediately. Success for me is a plant and pay off system.  You “plant” your opportunity and it needs hard work and time to flower.

It’s an amazing feeling to be able to share when things are going great for my family!  I am SO proud and honored to watch him succeed in life and be the happiest that he can be!

It’s My Anniversary!!!

I’m a couple of weeks late, so this is a belated celebration, but a year ago I decided to open up my world to all of you!  So far, Danithedreamgirl has been an amazing accomplishment and I’m sooooo looking forward to what’s in store for me.  You might be wondering what are some things that I’ve done with my site, and myself, in the past year …well, here you go!

-I’ve shared personal experiences with my readers!

-Started my own “how-to” segment with Become a Blogger Mondays

-I’ve conducted more than 16 interviews (which include celebrity interviews)

-I’ve built my contact list of celebs and publicists

-Had my site banner designed

-Took professional photos for promotions

-Built my traffic enough to generate revenue

-I’ve received 3 awards for my site!!!

-I started blogging for MuzikTalk.com

-Began photography services (with my new fancy camera)

-Have managed to help others and inspire them to follow/chase/run towards their dreams (the most important accomplishment)!!!

 

Although it has only been a year, it has been a gigantic step towards a great future!  I look forward to the next time when I can give you another annual update.  Thank you so much for your continued support…it means the world to me!

Become a Blogger Mondays: Be Consistent!

 

 

Hello Everyone!  Thank you for visiting my world for another edition of “Become a Blogger Mondays!”  As you know, there are many benefits of having a blog site, but in order to keep reaping those benefits, you must be diligent in posting regularly.  Everything is pretty much tied to how often you post, when you post, the things you post about etc., so it is important to remain consistent in staying true to your readers and build a rapport with the virtual world.  Here are some tips and examples of what has helped me remain consistent with posting:

 

1. Create set days for posting.

 

It took some time for me to realize that this was key, but with some guidance and following successful blogs, it was clear that setting a schedule for myself would really help with creating posts on a weekly basis.  For example, I block out Mondays, Tuesdays and Fridays for definite posts, so anything that I may feel the need to post in between those days, is strictly at my leisure (i.e. no pressure).

 

2.  Keep a personal “life schedule”.

 

No matter what I have going on or no matter how busy I am throughout the day, I always set at least a half an hour aside to work on my site (sometimes more).  This time can be used for anything (writing, maintenance, design, etc.).

 

3.  I stick to my blog’s overall theme, but throw a curveball every once in a while.

 

I think it’s important to give the readers what you say you are going to give them.  My whole blog is based around chasing your dreams, living outside of the box, inspiring others to follow their dreams by interviewing people who have made it or are on their way, etc.  But every once in  while, I like to have fun with my posts and tap into a unique visitor pool.  I manage to remain consistently inconsistent (lol).

 

4.  I put it in perspective.

 

When all else fails, I force myself to maintain my site.  In order for me to achieve the goals I’ve set forth for, danithedreamgirl.com, I need to stay on top of what I do.

 

 

As always, I hope this helps and feel free to add your tips in the “Comments” section.  Happy blogging and I will see you next week!

 

Ashanti’s Choreographer, Brice D. Vick, Shares His Dancing Success!

Always having a love for expression through movement, Brice D. Vick has fought his way to the top and through a very rigorous dance industry.  So many dancers are born and compete for that one shot every day, but not many are lucky enough to actually reach their goal of stardom.  Brice was discovered by a talent scout who was on a search to find the right person to choreograph an upcoming United Colors of Benetton commercial.  After having  a successful run with the company, he was soon discovered by top recording artist, Ashanti, and took on the role as her sole choreographer.  Like most success stories go, Vick’s talent also caught the attention of power houses such as:  Beyonce, R. Kelly, Christina Aguilera, 50 Cent, Lauryn Hill, Chris Brown and so many others.

 

Hailing from Queens, New York (my birthplace!), his dance ability bloomed while attending the Bernice Johnson Dance Studio.  Brice D. Vick was also trained at the Martha Graham School of Contemporary Dance, The Dance Theater of Harlem and the Alvin Ailey School of American Dance (wow!).  His journey has afforded him the opportunity to work with greats such as Debbie Allen and David Robertson.  If you think his story is inspiring, you are not alone!  I was able to pick his brain and find out what pushed him to fight so hard for his place in the industry, how you can get there and what latest projects he has in store.

 

 

What is the hardest thing you’ve had to endure throughout your career?

My mother getting diagnosed with congestive heart failure; I was in the height of my career. I had just finished working with Beyonce’ and I was working with Ashanti on the Concrete Rose album for her video “Only You” in addition to being selected the Artistic Director for Pop Starz, Inc. ( a professional dance company geared for children).  I got the call that my mother wouldn’t make it and I had to drop everything.

 

What advice can you offer up-and-coming choreographers who aren’t seeing success and feel like giving up?

If they feel that they need to give up, then that is not your calling. I would suggest that they create their own opportunities, produce their own events, create their own name by teaming up with local companies to showcase their talent.

 

What is your ultimate career goal?

To help preserve our future.  To me, that means helping children stay healthy, both mentally and physically. If we don’t look out for our youth, imagine a world without them..there isn’t one.

 

How have you managed to build your brand so well that power houses such as Ashanti and Beyonce trust you to work for/with them?

By hard work, determination and being talented. God doesn’t deny talent. When it’s your time to shine, it’s your time to shine! Choreography is what I love and when you are passionate about something and you invest time and energy, you cannot fail.

 

What advice would you offer the “younger you” knowing what you do about the industry thus far?

Run as fast as you can! LOL. No, I’m joking. I would say just to remain humble and know that in this industry, you must pay your dues. Every gig is an opportunity to show your talent and what you have to offer, regardless if it is paid or not. Also, no matter what comes my way, I can’t quit.

 

What artist have you always wanted to work with and haven’t yet?

Sting because I’ve always loved his music. With his style and mine, I think we would create the ultimate masterpiece. I believe he would allow me a lot of space to be creative.

 

What’s one funny/quirky thing that others don’t know about you?

I have to have my security blanket everywhere I go. I travel with it when I’m overseas. Also, I am a huge prankster.

 

What projects do you have coming up in the near future?

I am releasing a children’s DVD called “Hip Hop For Health”, it is a fun and interactive way for children to learn the benefits of exercise and taking care of their bodies by incorporating hip hop music and moves.

Be sure to support Brice D. Vick’s new children’s DVD when it comes out!  Making sure our kids are healthy is key!  I hope this has been helpful for all aspiring dancers out there.  Thank you for visiting the Dreamworld; come back often!

If You Love Football Then You Know Hugh Douglas!

I do so many posts about people in the music and acting industry, so it’s time for me to switch it up a bit and do something for us sports junkies out there!  I mean, after all…football season is amongst us!  I know that there is some little boy who wants to make it into the NFL, but may not know where to start or understand what could make him a potential professional player.  What better way to get any of this information than to reach out to someone who’s been there and who’s done that?!  I had the pleasure of picking the brain of the eccentric, Hugh Douglas.

Born in Ohio and a Central State University alum (also a member of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc.), Hugh is a former NFL player who’s made his way around the league with the Eagles (oh yeah!), Jets and Jaguars.  This powerhouse was a first round draft choice of the Jets in 1995 and a 3-time Pro Bowl selection.  In 1998 Douglas was traded to the Eagles where he would play for 5 years before moving on to the Jaguars.  Re-signing with the Eagles, he was later cut before the start of the 2005 season.  You can still see Douglas as a sports analyst for ESPN.  He’s straight and to the point, but he has some good tips for young men making their way into the league!

Which team was your favorite and why (you better say the Eagles lol)?
As a matter of fact it was the Pittsburgh Steelers.. I was a fan of Mean Joe Green!

What’s a big thing young athletes need to be cautious/aware of before entering the NFL?
That everyone is watching you now. You have to learn how to conduct yourself in public.

What was the transition from NFL player to front office employee like?
It was a little different.  Now you’re not one of the guys anymore, you’re management .. And everyone watches what they say when they are around you. But after awhile it was cool.

What do you say to the young athlete who has all the skills, but a bad attitude?
You need to get it together son!! Just because you have the skills doesn’t always mean you make it. You should be humble at all times

Speak to the young guys dreaming of an NFL career, what’s their first step in making their dreams come true?
Work hard . Get good grades and stay humble.

What do you miss most about playing?
THE CHECKS!!!!!!

What major differences do you see between the players you played with versus the young players now?
More players now are sensitive to what people say about them. If you don’t like it don’t read the paper!!

If there was one thing that you could do differently throughout your whole career, what would it be?
One thing…I would have never went to Jacksonville.

They say fame and money change people, how did you manage to remain grounded?  Did your friends/family begin to treat you differently once you reached success?
Football never defined me as a person .. It was just a job

What’s one funny/quirky thing fans may not know about you?
Hmmmmm. I’m really shy!

I don’t think you’re really shy, but thanks for visiting the Dreamworld and keeping it real. It’s always great to have fun guests who are willing to be completely honest!

They Want ME? Yes, They Do!

Bloggers have different goals for their sites.  Some do it just for the fun of it and others use it as an outlet to branch into other things like: blogging for other sites, to make money, to build their brand, etc.  I, myself, am open to any and every door that opens up for Danithedreamgirl.com.  With that said, I’m blessed to be able to say that I’m taking major steps in the right direction!  I’m officially part of a growing team at MuzikTalk.com.  They are a brand new site that is launching this winter and will be a great resource for EVERYTHING MUSIC!  You’ll be able to get information on current events within the music world, updates on new music and it will also be an amazing tool for all music artists.  Up-and-coming artists, or established ones, will be able to promote their projects and their skills with MuzikTalk and of course, I will be one of the selected bloggers bringing you interviews and highlights from around the music industry.  My main focus will be to cover the genre of R&B, but if you know someone who is looking to break into the industry (within any genre), send them my way!

If you would like to submit information/tracks from your current or upcoming project(s), email info@muziktalk.com and become part of a community that is going to help promote you!

This is an amazing opportunity and I’m definitely looking forward to this new piece of my journey!  My dreams are becoming a reality; I hope you are all paying attention!