Rep. French Hill (R) Arkansas joins the On the Move panel to discuss last night's presidential debate.
Rep. French Hill (R) Arkansas joins the On the Move panel to discuss last night's presidential debate.
Microsoft won't raise the price of Xbox Live, and it's adding free multiplayer for free-to-play games like 'Fortnite.'
The SpaceX Transporter-1 mission set to launch today will put 133 commercial and government spacecraft, as well as 10 more Starlink satellites, in orbit. SpaceX says that’s “the most spacecraft ever deployed on a single mission” — the previous record holder, an Indian Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle, ferried only 104 satellites to space. In addition to having a record-breaking payload, Transporter-1 is also the first dedicated launch under the SmallSat Rideshare Program SpaceX announced back in 2019.
Courtesy Gingko Press IncThe elegantly attired, 4’11” great grandmother might not have been easily identifiable as a music mogul to the industry insiders attending the American Association of Independent Music Awards at Manhattan’s Highline Ballroom on that day in the summer of 2015. Then Patricia Chin, co-founder of reggae label VP Records, stepped up to the stage to receive the group’s Lifetime Achievement Award, the first woman ever to have done so. “As I look out at the audience tonight, I imagine that many of you may be asking yourselves, ‘who is this Chinese lady with this big Jamaican accent, and what is VP Records?’” said Miss Pat, (as she is affectionately known) in her acceptance speech, to roaring applause. “In large part the story of VP Records is about a woman working behind the scenes and her journey for the past 50 years in the reggae music industry.”VP Records, established in Queens, New York, in 1979, with additional offices in Kingston, London, Miami, Rio de Janeiro, and Tokyo, is the world’s largest independent label, distributor, and publisher of reggae and dancehall music, controlling more than 25,000 song titles. In her forthcoming glossy coffee table memoir, Pat Chin: Miss Pat My Reggae Music Journey, Miss Pat tells VP’s story, which is inextricably tied to the development of Jamaica’s recording industry and the birth of ska, rocksteady and reggae. Miss Pat offers historical anecdotes about recording sessions with Bob Marley and Lee “Scratch” Perry when both were seeking greater fortunes. Accolades for Miss Pat are found throughout, including one from hip-hop godfather DJ Kool Herc, who says: “What Berry Gordy was to Motown, Patricia Chin is to VP Records and the reggae industry.” Courtesy Gingko Press Inc In the book’s most compelling passages, Miss Pat courageously details her life’s greatest challenges: the death of her infant son; fleeing Jamaica’s explosive politics of the 1970s, struggling to acclimate to another society; defying the sexist and racist attitudes she encountered as a non-white female working in the music business in New York City; becoming educated about alcoholism to help her embattled husband, VP Records co-founder, Vincent “Randy” Chin, who passed away in 2003; coping with the unsolved murder of her grandson, VP A&R Joel Chin, in 2011. “The process of writing my book was freeing,” Miss Pat told The Daily Beast in an early December interview via Zoom. “I wanted my book to be truthful, entertaining and interesting so I couldn’t leave out personal details, I want people to get to know me better instead of seeing me as just a music person.”The reggae matriarch, now 83, was born Dorothy Patricia Williams on Sept. 20, 1937; her maternal and paternal grandparents migrated to Jamaica, respectively, from China and India, seeking better lives. “It was hard to survive where they came from, so they took a chance on Jamaica,” recalled Miss Pat, who was raised in a single room house in Kingston’s Greenwich Farm community. “Despite our lack of material comforts, there was never time for complaints. My mother shared stories about her hardworking shopkeeper parents and the innovative tricks they used to do business with their customers, despite the language barrier,” she writes. Miss Pat’s father wanted her to work in a bank, but, inspired by her idol Mother Teresa, she studied nursing at Kingston’s University of The West Indies. Inheriting her mother’s rebellious spirit, Miss Pat relished the freedom of living on campus, where she was often visited by a handsome young man, Vincent Chin, much to her father’s disapproval. “Known for skipping school and smoking marijuana, Vincent was your typical bad boy, the kind of suitor no parent wanted for their daughter,” Miss Pat writes. “To make it worse, he had already fathered a child (Clive) who was a toddler. My father saw my suitor for what he was: trouble.”On March 15, 1957, Miss Pat, then 19 years old, left school and married Vincent, two weeks before giving birth to their son, Gregory. He died from meningitis on his first birthday. “For the sake of my well-being,” penned Miss Pat, “I was never told where my infant son was laid to rest.” Vincent and Pat’s son Christopher was born four months later.Are Jamaica’s Biggest Stars Leaving Reggae Behind?Vincent got a job, stocking jukeboxes across the island with new 7” records; Miss Pat believed that the older discs could be sold directly to the public. In 1959 they set up a shop within a small grocery store selling the used records. They called their business Randy’s Record Mart, after Randy Wood, owner of WHIN AM, a jazz, R&B, and country music station in Tennessee that Vincent faithfully listened to on his shortwave radio. In 1961 Vincent and Miss Pat moved to an 8’ x 10’ space within a Chinese restaurant located at 17 North Parade, a bustling area of downtown Kingston, next to a central bus route; they set up a small speaker box outside playing music, which brought in customers. Sales increased and with a loan from Miss Pat’s father, the couple eventually bought out the Chinese restaurant and purchased the building. Shortly thereafter, Vincent and Pat acquired the building next door and began building a recording studio. Courtesy Gingko Press Inc The opening of Studio 17 upstairs from Randy’s Record Mart coincided with the development of Jamaica’s first popular music form, ska, which led to a proliferation in recordings that Studio 17 helped expedite. “In those days, there was no one stop studio where one could complete their work, start to finish. You had to go to one place to do a recording, another to do the mastering. With more and more artists and producers emerging, and with the existing studios charging high fees, we designed the studio to be a full house production so that we could be completely independent,” writes Miss Pat, who would play the test pressings of recordings in the shop to gauge the customers’ interest and then choose which songs they would press in bulk for sale.Vincent Chin started producing his own records and one of his biggest hits arrived in 1962, the year of Jamaica’s independence from England. “Independent Jamaica” didn’t incorporate the island’s indigenous ska beat, it was a calypso sung by Trinidadian born, Kingston based Lord Creator; nonetheless, it became an anthem for the new nation’s optimism, released on Randy’s Creative Calypso label.Miss Pat stocked the shop with at least one record by every artist she knew of and asked aspiring artists and producers to leave their records on consignment, which laid the foundation for Randy’s wholesale division. Music lovers flocked to Randy’s to hear the latest records while producers sought out the singers and musicians that would frequent an adjacent alley called Idler’s Rest (“the unofficial epicenter of Jamaican music,” Miss Pat writes) to record tracks at Studio 17. Many icons of Jamaican music recorded there, including singers Gregory Isaacs, Dennis Brown and Alton Ellis, harmony trios The Wailers and The Maytals and seminal ska outfit, The Skatalites.Several classic roots reggae albums were recorded at Studio 17, including The Wailers’ Soul Rebel, Burning Spear’s Marcus Garvey, Peter Tosh’s Equal Rights and melodica master Augustus Pablo’s debut This Is Augustus Pablo, the latter produced by Pablo’s school mate, Vincent’s son Clive.Clive also produced Pablo’s (still) influential single, “Java” and Studio 17’s first international hit, Carl Malcolm’s “Fattie Bum-Bum,” which reached No. 8 on the UK singles chart. The late American singer Johnny Nash, reportedly the first non-Jamaican to record rocksteady/reggae on the island, was so impressed by Studio 17, he booked the facility for three consecutive months. Miss Pat attributes Studio 17’s success to Vincent’s amiable personality. “He loved everyone regardless of how poor they were; many musicians didn’t even have shoes on their feet, but Vincent would bring them into the studio, encourage them. Everything was experimentation, we didn’t have a reggae culture yet, it started from that time,” notes Miss Pat.Due to escalating political violence in Jamaica throughout the 1970s, Vincent and Pat migrated to the U.S. “At that time (under Prime Minister Michael Manley’s socialist government) if you owned a business, you had a little more money than the others and with the unrest and riots going on, we felt very uncomfortable, and worried about the safety of our children,” Miss Pat acknowledged. They chose New York City because Vincent’s brother was living in Brooklyn, where he established Chin Randy’s Records. Vincent and his sons Clive and Christopher landed at New York City’s JFK airport in the summer of 1977. Miss Pat remained in Kingston with her two younger children, Vincent (a.k.a. Randy) Jr. and Angela; they joined the family in New York City the following year.Vincent and Pat started their new endeavor by renting a small storefront near the elevated train tracks along Queens’ Jamaica Avenue, from which they supplied reggae records to a few outlets. When the Jamaican government began clamping down on exports, Vincent and Pat started pressing their own records in New York; as their sales increased, they purchased a building at 170-21 Jamaica Ave in 1979 from another wholesale record business owner, Sam Kleinholt. The Chins named their reggae wholesale/retail store VP Records, the initials of Vincent and Pat’s first names. They hired Kleinholt’s secretary, Rhoda Bernstein, who worked with VP for 15 years, until her death. “She was a godsend,” Miss Pat writes, “she taught us everything she thought would help us adjust; to say she made our transition into New York life easier is an understatement.”Not all New Yorkers were as welcoming. Miss Pat remembers wanting to purchase a home in the (then) predominantly white community of Jamaica Estates, about two miles from VP Records; her real estate broker discouraged her, without explanation. “Years after, I realized I couldn’t buy there because we were of a different culture, there was a color barrier,” she notes, “he wanted to put me in another area where I would be more ‘comfortable.’” Miss Pat also recalled instances when VP customers called the store, got her on the line and asked to speak to a man instead. “They thought I didn’t know the music,” she reminisced. “I worked hard on my skills; we had so much music coming out every day, I had to know the name of the record, the singer, the producer, the rhythm track; I was like an encyclopedia, I knew everything about the music.” Courtesy Gingko Press Inc As VP Records grew into a thriving one stop shop covering all facets of Jamaican music, in 1990 the Chins purchased two large warehouses, one in Jamaica, Queens, the other in Miami. As the decade progressed, Jamaican dancehall reggae exploded in popularity as several of the genre’s superstars (including Shabba Ranks, Super Cat) signed to major record labels and impacted a wider American market. VP had distributed these artists’ records for years, so their familiarity with the music became an indispensable asset to the majors in furthering dancehall’s appeal. The Chins’ next move was establishing the VP Records label in 1993, the same year they launched their most successful annual reggae/dancehall compilation series, Reggae Gold.VP Records’ 1999 release “Who Am I” by Beenie Man was a certified gold single. Even greater triumphs arrived with Sean Paul, who was signed to VP by Clive’s son Joel Chin, in 2000. VP entered into a partnership with Atlantic Records, propelled by Sean’s big hit “Gimme The Light.” Sean’s two-time platinum selling sophomore album Dutty Rock won a Grammy for Best Reggae Album. “That was the moment we took a deep gasp and realized, as we Jamaicans would say, ‘dis a nuh joke ting we a deal wid,’” writes Miss Pat.Vincent, however, was uninspired by dancehall; he became depressed and was, according to Miss Pat, “mentally checking out of the business.” He struggled with alcoholism, which included several stays in rehab. Miss Pat writes that Vincent’s excessive drinking was linked to “a troubled spirit,” that she tied all the way back to his childhood, and “his parents’ mixed-race marriage. Vincent’s father was prominent in the Chinese Jamaican community, but he didn’t interact with his Black wife within that community. I believe this unspoken prejudice caused my husband to develop a deep sense of insecurity, resentment and sadness.” Miss Pat recalls her mother enduring a similar dilemma, because her parents disapproved of their daughter’s marriage to an Indian man. “My grandparents made up with my father and mother, but it took them 12 years because 100 years ago, marrying outside of your (Chinese) culture was a no-no. But my parents were in love and survived all the barriers.” Miss Pat’s father was also an alcoholic and her mother tried to conceal that from Pat and her siblings, just as Miss Pat shielded her children from the truth. “Not being honest with my children is one of my biggest regrets, it’s the only thing I would do differently, if given the chance,” Miss Pat reveals.Vincent and Pat’s son Randy, VP’s President, gave up his successful career in aeronautics to join the family business in 1995; Christopher is the company CEO and Angela runs the Florida warehouse/distribution center. Clive has intermittently worked with VP but has also pursued numerous independent projects. In December 2014 he filed a lawsuit against VP seeking $3 million, alleging the company licensed songs he wrote and recorded at Studio 17 without his permission; that lawsuit was quietly resolved.In addition to the award at the Highline Ballroom, one of Miss Pat’s proudest moments was VP Records’ 25th anniversary concert at Manhattan’s Radio City Music Hall in 2004, headlined by various acts associated with the company over the years, including Beenie Man, Shaggy and Beres Hammond. “That was the first time I saw my name in lights and with all the people lining up to come in, I was overjoyed. For one night, reggae had taken over an iconic American landmark. If I didn’t know before that, that anything was possible, I knew it then,” she writes. In 2007 VP Records acquired its chief competitor, the UK’s Greensleeves Records, and their catalogue of 12,000 songs, to become the largest independent reggae company in the world. That imposing status is the crowning result of Miss Pat’s remarkable and still ongoing journey. “It took a while for this to sink in,” she pens. “When you’ve built something from the ground up, the memories of selling records in your 8’ x 10’ shop never quite leave you.”CIA, Guns, and Rasta: Inside the Making of Reggae’s Most Iconic FilmRead more at The Daily Beast.Get our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.
Canada said its officials have met online with former diplomat Michael Kovrig, who has been held in China for more than two years in a case related to an executive of Chinese telecoms giant Huawei. Canada’s Foreign Ministry said officials led by Ambassador Dominic Barton were given “on-site virtual consular access” to Kovrig on Thursday. Kovrig and businessman Michael Spavor have been confined since Dec. 10, 2018, just days after Canada detained Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou, who is also the daughter of the founder of the Chinese telecommunications equipment giant.
The Mega Millions jackpot on Friday was worth an estimated $1 billion, making it the third-largest jackpot in U.S. history.
A year ago, a notice sent to smartphones in Wuhan at 2 a.m. announced the world's first coronavirus lockdown that would last 76 days. Traffic was light in Wuhan but there was no sign of the barriers that a year ago isolated neighborhoods, prevented movement around the city and confined people to their housing compounds and even apartments. Wuhan accounted for the bulk of China’s 4,635 deaths from COVID-19, a number that has largely stayed static for months.
The state threatened to cut the county's vaccine supply after Dallas made plans to first vaccinate vulnerable people in the hardest-hit zip codes, which are primarily communities of color.
Monty Wilkinson worked with Iris Lan in reviewing complaints about prosecutor who said he was ‘disturbed’ by Trump policy An immigrant child looks out from a US border patrol bus in McAllen, Texas, on 23 June 2018. Photograph: David J. Phillip/AP The Biden administration’s acting attorney general, a longtime career official named Monty Wilkinson, took part in a controversial 2017 decision to remove a justice department (DoJ) lawyer in Texas who had raised concerns about migrant children who were being separated from their parents. Emails seen by the Guardian show that Wilkinson, who is expected to serve as acting attorney general until Judge Merrick Garland is formally confirmed by the Senate, worked with another longtime career official, Iris Lan, in reviewing complaints about Joshua Stern, a prosecutor who had told colleagues he was “disturbed” by the Trump administration’s separation policy. The policy ultimately led to the separation of about 1,550 children from their parents, hundreds of whom have still not been reunited, although Joe Biden has said he would make that one of his top priorities. Stern, who is no longer employed by the DoJ, was ultimately removed from his post as a temporary detailee, two weeks after senior officials in Texas raised concerns about him to officials in Washington DC, including Wilkinson. Wilkinson, who Biden chose to serve as acting attorney general until Garland is confirmed, had been overseeing human resources, security planning and the library at the justice department before he was elevated to serve as acting attorney general. A recent report in the New York Times suggested that Wilkinson was a trusted longtime official, and that his “low profile” all but guaranteed that he was not involved in any of the myriad scandals that defined the justice department under Donald Trump and the former attorney general Bill Barr. But a report published by the Guardian in September 2020 revealed that Wilkinson was one of several career officials who reviewed complaints that ultimately led to the removal of Stern from the western district of Texas in 2017. The report was focused on the role a senior justice department official, Iris Lan, played in reviewing those complaints. Lan had been nominated to serve in a lifetime appointment as a federal judge, but the nomination was never taken up in the Senate after a number of immigrant rights groups raised concerns about Lan following publication of the Guardian’s article. It is not clear whether Wilkinson or Lan privately supported or criticized the administration’s child separation policy when they heard about Stern’s concerns. At the time of the controversy, Wilkinson was working as director of the executive office for US attorneys, a role that he had been appointed to by Eric Holder, the former attorney general for Barack Obama. Emails seen by the Guardian show that a DoJ official in Texas named Jose Gonzalez sent a memo to the then acting US attorney for the western district, Richard Durbin, in September 2017 in which he outlined concerns about Stern, including complaints that Stern was “particularly disturbed” by cases in which defendants could not locate their children. The western district, in El Paso, was at the time involved in a pilot program to criminally prosecute migrants who were entering the country illegally, which in turn led to people being separated from their children, sometimes indefinitely. The policy was later expanded to include all border states, but was ended following an outcry in Congress and in the press, when stories about migrant children being separated began to become known. Stern had been sent to Texas to help deal with a significant influx in migrant cases. But emails show that he was deeply concerned and alarmed about the children who were separated, and told prosecutors that the parents who were being prosecuted were “often fleeing violence in their home countries”. He also told superiors in Texas that he had been contacting agencies to try to help locate missing children. The memo detailing what was seen as Stern’s insubordination was forwarded by Durbin to Lan, who told Lan that he did not believe Stern was “fully committed to the program”. Durbin was seeking to release Stern from the detailee program early. Lan, in turn, said she was not sure about the usual protocol, and said she wanted to share the memo with Wilkinson to get his “take” before “we proceed”. Wilkinson then responded to Lan and Durbin saying that he and Durbin had talked and that Durbin was going to send more “specific examples”. Stern was sent a termination letter that ended his posting on 20 September 2017, two weeks after concerns were first raised with Lan and, later, Wilkinson. Stern has not responded to questions by the Guardian. A spokesperson for the DoJ said in a statement: “The department cannot comment on specific personnel matters. Regarding the process for detail assignments from components to US Attorneys Offices, the decision on whether to continue a detail is between the lending and receiving components. EOUSA plays an administrative role related to the associated paperwork but does not make decisions on assignments.” It did not provide further comment on who did make the decision. A DoJ spokeswoman under the Trump administration said, in response to questions for the previous Guardian article on the matter, that Lan had received the memo about Stern because of her role as a liaison to US attorneys and did not handle personnel matters. “She routed it, consistent with her role,” she said. A recent report by the Office of Inspector General (OIG) at the Department of Justice closely examined the role some officials at the department played in Trump’s separation policy. It said department leadership knew the policy would result in children being separated from their families and that the former US attorney general Jeff Sessions “demonstrated a deficient understanding of the legal requirements related to the care and custody of separated children”. “We concluded that the Department’s single-minded focus on increasing immigration prosecutions came at the expense of careful and appropriate consideration of the impact of family unit prosecutions and child separations,” the report said.
President Joe Biden made his first calls to foreign leaders as America's commander in chief on Friday, dialing up Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador at a strained moment for the U.S. relationship with its North American neighbors. Biden's call to Trudeau came after the Canadian prime minister this week publicly expressed disappointment over Biden’s decision — one of his first acts as president — to issue an executive order halting construction of the Keystone XL oil pipeline. The long disputed project was projected to carry some 800,000 barrels of oil a day from the tar sands of Alberta to the Texas Gulf Coast, passing through Montana, South Dakota, Nebraska, Kansas and Oklahoma.
Plus: California keeps virus data from the public, and San Mateo County sues yoga studio for maskless sessions.
Biden and Trudeau discussed Covid-19, Keystone XL, climate change and other subjects during the more than 30-minute conversation.
Mexico's pandemic cases continued at a high level Friday as President Andrés Manuel López Obrador gave state governors permission to acquire coronavirus vaccines on their own. Officials reported just over 21,000 newly confirmed virus infections a day after the country listed a record 22,339 cases. Mexico's federal government has received about 750,000 doses of the Pfizer vaccine so far, with almost 600,000 administered.
The change means fewer vials of vaccine as some states complain they've run out of shots.
A Federal Aviation Administration employee and QAnon follower from California who had been on the FBI's radar is facing federal charges after he confessed to taking part in the siege of the U.S. Capitol, according to court documents released Friday. Kevin Strong, 44, of Beaumont, surrendered to authorities on Friday and appeared in a federal court in Riverside, where a judge ordered him held on $50,000 bond, said Laura Eimiller, spokeswoman for the FBI in Los Angeles. It wasn't immediately clear whether Strong had raised the bond.
Thousands of Hong Kongers were ordered to stay in their homes on Saturday for the city's first coronavirus lockdown as authorities battle an outbreak in one of its poorest and most densely packed districts. The order bans anyone inside multiple housing blocks within the neighbourhood of Jordan from leaving their apartment unless they can show a negative test. Officials said they planned to test everyone inside the designated zone within 48 hours "in order to achieve the goal of zero cases in the district". The South China Morning Post said the measures covered about 150 housing blocks and up to 9,000 people with hundreds of police on standby to enforce the lockdown. Hong Kong was one of the first places to be struck by the coronavirus after it burst out of central China.
The chairman of the union that represents Capitol police, told CBS News that cases have "spiked" since the January 6 attack.
Thousands of Hong Kong residents were locked down Saturday in an unprecedented move to contain a worsening outbreak in the city, authorities said. Hong Kong has been grappling to contain a fresh wave of the coronavirus since November. Coronavirus cases in Hong Kong’s Yau Tsim Mong district – a working-class neighborhood with old buildings and subdivided flats – represent about half of infections in the past week.
Follow for all the latest news coming from the new White House and beyond in US politics
A Las Vegas-based tour bus heading to the Grand Canyon rolled over in northwestern Arizona on Friday, killing one person and critically injuring two others, authorities said. A spokeswoman for the Mohave County Sheriff's Office said the cause of the Friday afternoon wreck was not yet known, but a fire official who responded said speed appeared to be a factor.
Denmark's Social Democrat prime minister has declared that she wants the country to receive "zero asylum seekers", relaunching her party's drive to be as restrictive on immigration as the populist right. "That is our goal," Mette Frederiksen told Denmark's parliament on Friday afternoon. "We cannot promise zero asylum seekers. But we can set up that vision." Just 1,547 people have applied for asylum in Denmark 2020, the lowest number since 1998, thanks in part to the Covid pandemic and in part to the country's tough immigration system. But, according to Ms Frederiksen, even this is too many. "We must make sure that not too many people come to our country, otherwise our social cohesion cannot exist. It is already under threat," she said. She told parliament that Denmark had in the past made too few demands on the foreigners, allowing them to live on benefits while failing to adopt Danish cultural values. Denmark has one of Europe's toughest immigration and asylum regimes, owing in part to the influence of the populist Danish People's Party, which for nearly twenty years made tighter restrictions the price of its parliamentary support.