Archive for October, 2010


Posted in Articles, Black British Literature, Black History, Newsletter with tags , , , on October 31, 2010 by

  ‘When someone shares something of value with you and you benefit from it, you have a moral obligation to share it with others.’



Greetings and welcome to PANTHER NEWSLETTER ISSUE 11


Yes each and everyone, we’re back from our extra special journey to Northern California to connect with my family.  A special thanks goes out to my Dad and ‘Second Mom’ Dorothy ‘the director’ Smith, my brother Greg, his wife Deborah and my sister Ginger for making sure we had a good time in Sacramento.

A big shout also goes out to the Oakland massives for making us feel at home and here they are; my cousin Michael Gooding and his finance Nicolia Bagby, Brotha Chaz Walker and his wife Ife, Sidney Glass and his wife Eleanor, Shayna Brye, Charleston Cone, Bob and Kenya and last but by no means least, Brotha Kevin the chef for cooking up some serious soul food at the dinner party in the Merit Lake area of Oakland organised by Nicolia; ‘the hostess with the mostess’.  Jah bless y’all; and we’ll see y’all again soon…

Welcome to our new readers here in the UK, also in Holland, France, St Kitts and Nevis, the U.S.A and Canada.  The usual PANTHER NEWSLETTER message to our new readers is: “Welcome aboard; rock and come in,” and a big, big thanks to you the regular readers for making the months of September and October the most record breaking number of hits pon top of hits; I give thanks, keep on clicking.

In this issue of PANTHER NEWSLETTER we have THE ARTIST OF THE MONTH, our incomparable SPECIAL GUEST, the FEATURED POEM, a FEATURED ARTICLE by Denise Anthea, a TRIBUTE TO THE COOL RULER Gregory Isaacs who sadly passed away this month and everybody’s favourite THE CULTURE CORNER.  Don’t forget to click on Normskis Musical Coa-Coa Basket and tune into the sweet-sweet sounds of roots, rock, reggae.

So kick back and enjoy PANTHER NEWSLETTER ISSUE 11



The Coalition Government Wants To Get Direct Access To Your Bank Account.

The coalition government (Conservative & Liberal Democrats), wants direct access to your bank account.  No longer will you be paid by your employer, with them sorting out the tax to collect.  The employer would send the money to the government, and then the government pays you into your bank account.  Check it out here…(Recorded from BBC Weekend News, 18 September 2010).

Diane Abbot

Well she didn’t win the race to become the new leader of the Labour Party, but there is no doubt she is inspiring potential future black female politicians here in the UK who are watching her closely.  Early last month, my cousin Kim Pearson interviewed Ms Abbot; read the interview here…

Food For Thought

This very interesting email was forwarded to me last month and I was asked to forward it to everybody I know.  So I’m using the PANTHER NEWSLETTER platform to forward it to my brothers and sisters of the world.  Please, take time out to read it here… 


Also last month I recieved a  few emails from sistas who expressed why I haven’t featured anything about natural hair.  I am an avid supporter of sistas who want to glorify the natural look.  So this is for you ladies with, or who are thinking about going natural and I trust y’all will have many hours of inspired reading.  Click on this link and enjoy Natural Notts… you can also find the link on Facebook.

Black Studies Course 2010 to 2011

Black History is not just for one month in the year.  Black History is A Life Time Experience.  If you have not already done so, it is time to Explore and Understand Your Past, Your Present and Your Future.  Check out The Black Studies Course 2010 to 2011 here…

New 1990 Trust & Roots Research Centre Website & Black Newspaper Archive Launch

The 1990 Trust and its research arm, the Roots Research Centre, is proud to launch its new website and Black Newspaper Archive, available to view.  For more details click here…


A new website/newsletter from outta the streets of Birmingham called Recognize is soon to be launched.  Check out what its gonna be about here… 


Congratulations to my long time bredrin Brotha Chaz Walker (who hails from Oakland California); for releasing his brilliant conscious album: Wisdom And Knowledge; A fusion of Hip-Hop and Reggae musical flavour.  So if you want to investigate and purchase his album that has a different essence, click here…

Congratulations to Roy McFarlane for being announced as Birmingham’s new Poet Laureate.  Nice one Roy, you deserve it my Don!

…And I don’t mean to brag and I don’t mean to boast but congratulations to me from coast to coast.  PANTHER NEWSLETTER has been honoured by Strathmore’s WHO’S WHO, for: demonstrating leadership and achievement in their occupation, industry or profession.  Here’s how it reads in their registry 2010/2011.


Soul singer Solomon Burke dies aged 70.

Soul Singer Solomon Burke who wrote “Everbody Needs Somebody to Love” and recorded the hit “Cry to Me” used in the movie, “Dirty Dancing” has died at Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport, more…

Cool Ruler singer Gregory Isaacs dies aged 59

Reggae star Gregory Isaacs has died at the age of 59 at his London home following a long illness, here…


Posted in Articles, Newsletter, Poems with tags , , on October 31, 2010 by

She is a writer and radio broadcaster, event host and a former Birmingham Poet Laureate.   As a live spoken word artist she’s appeared at The Big Chill, and with her one woman show ‘Buddhism & Ben & Jerry’s’ at Bristol Old Vic and The Rep.   In her 20 year radio career she’s presented shows on Radio 1, Radio 2, Capital Fm, LBC, BBC London, BRMB, Heart and Smooth FM.   She also hosts live events including The Brit Writers Awards at London’s O2, Prince’s Trust Awards and The Clothes Show Live.

PANTHER NEWSLETTER’s ARTIST OF THE MONTH is Birmingham’s very own eloquent poet CHARLIE JORDANI hooked up with Charlie to reason with her, about her and her works.  Check out to her interview here…


Posted in Black British Literature, Black History, Newsletter, Poems with tags , , , on October 31, 2010 by


A Tribute Frederick William Smith

Sunrise: January 9, 1924   Sunset: November 20, 2014 

© Norman Samuda-Smith 2014


He showed me how to be a man. He’s helped me, advised me and guided me. Although sometimes I haven’t agreed with him along the way. He’s strong and gentle too, and I strive to be like him everyday…


  • I’m blessed to be his son, it was written from the start.
  • He’s a supreme father, loving, kind and smart.
  • He’s not a chic dresser, but he’s trimmed and very neat;
  • with casually smart clothes, to the shoes he wears on his feet.


  • He doesn’t hang out at the pub,nor does he drive a flashy car;
  • and when he takes vacations, he doesn’t go too far.
  • He doesn’t dine on fine cuisine; To him: ‘Fast food nuh sweet,’
  • he always has rice on his plate, when it’s time for him to eat.


  • He has a humble house in California,which has all what he needs.
  • He keeps his garden cut nice and short; he grows vegetables and fruits and he trims all the weeds.
  • He used to work long hours, to earn an average pay.
  • Even when he was sick or tired, he turned up at work everyday.


  • He worked as a mechanic, a builder; a variety of jobs.
  • His pay just made ends meet; but the few good friends and family he has, makes his life complete.


  • He has never had much money, his life is not for show; but still he’s the richest man, I will ever know.
  • He’s not well-versed in poetry, the theatre or the arts,
  • but he has wisdom, knowledge and overstanding of life, something that he constantly imparts.
  • He loves the simple things in life, for riches he doesn’t thirst.


  • He knows what is important, he puts his family first.
  • The wealth that God has given him, to treasure in his life;
  • loving sons, daughters, grandchildren and great grandchildren, and a very special wife.


  • To many he’s just a simple man; but he’s the greatest man I know.
  • A man of great dignity, honour and strength; he’s my Dad, my mentor, my hero.


  • Bless up Dad!
  • Rest in Peace.


Posted in Articles, Black History, Newsletter with tags , , on October 31, 2010 by

There are many community organisations in Birmingham who are doing positive things for the youth and the communities at large.  One of those companies is C De Vision Limited.

C De Vision (CDV) was incorporated in October 2005 and began to trade in April 2006.  Although a new company, it has already attracted funding organisations such as The Birmingham Foundation, The Heritage Lottery Fund, Youth Opportunities/Capital Fund, Digbeth Trust Fund and others.  C De Vision is an ambassador for children, young people and a champion for all.   They strive to listen to the voice of each individual, children and young person so that their views and suggestions can be heard and acted upon.  It is a company that listens, hears and supports.

The concept behind the company is that cultural diversity is a pillow of the community and therefore needs to be cherished and nurtured.  Their philosophy is quite simply to See it, Believe it, Do it!

C De Vision Limited boasts an impressive array of highly motivated, qualified, experienced and talented associates, performance and freelance artists.  They are able to demonstrate an exraordinary ability to connect with children, young people, adolescents and young at different levels, regardless of ranging abilities, in order to achieve the aims and outcomes of the project/s they are involved in.  It is the aim and committment of every member of the staff team and all who are employed to work on behalf of CDV that all workshops, training sessions and projects – Promotes, Motivates, Requires discipline, Inspires and Encourages participants to Move Forward.

The visionary of C De Vision Limited is Pamela Brooks, who is full of energy; driven by her vision and her faith.  I recently hooked up with Pamela to find out more about her and CDV.  Read her interview here…



Posted in Articles, Black British Literature, Black History, Newsletter with tags , , , on October 31, 2010 by

Sunrise:  15 July 1951   sunset:  25 October 2010


Reggae musician and singer Gregory Isaacs, known affectionately as the ‘Cool Ruler,’ has died aged 59. He died at his London home after a long battle against cancer. Isaacs will always be remembered for his 1982 album ‘Night Nurse’ particularly the title track. He was a prolific artist; he released over 500 albums in a career stretching over forty years and collaborated with some of the biggest names in reggae and dancehall, including producer Sugar Minott, who also died this year. The popular Jamaican singer will be sorely missed. His wife Lynda said: “Gregory was well-loved by everyone, his fans and his family, he worked really hard to make sure he delivered the music they loved and enjoyed.” A stylish polished performer he had made his home in London for years but was a frequent visitor back to his home country Jamaica. Other groups he worked with were Simply Red and Madness. Singer Suggs of Madness on hearing of the death of Gregory Isaacs said: “He was a great reggae artist and also one of the most sartorially elegant stars on the world stage.”

RIP Brother Gregory ‘The Cool Ruler’ Isaacs

A true legend.

Tune into the best of Gregory Isaacs right here: John Public, Tune inNight Nurse, Rumours, Border, My Time, Soon Forward, Mr Brown, Cool Down The Pace, Universal Tribulation, Black Liberation Struggle, Rock Away, Mr Know It All, Love Is Overdue, Slave Master

‘Til next month – Everyting Bless


Posted in Articles, Black British Literature, Black History, Newsletter with tags , , , on October 31, 2010 by

Loving Yourself

© 2010 Denise Anthea


Have a go at this quick exercise.  Go to a mirror, stand in front of it, smile and say “(your name) I love you.  You are beautiful, you are loved.” 

Did you do it?  If so, how did it feel?  Did it come to you naturally or did it feel strange? 

This little exercise demonstrates how you feel about yourself deep inside.  A lot of us are taught that it is okay for others to tell us how attractive, clever, great they are.  But expressing this out loud about ourselves?  That’s another story.

When we compliment someone on their beauty and they instantly respond “I know.”  Automatically, we may think “they think a lot about themselves don’t they?”  Yet if this same person has been told, practically all their lives that they have a lovely face, why shouldn’t they know?  It’s theirs to own.

A woman was once complimented on her beauty to which she simply replied; “Thanks, but it’s really nothing to do with me it’s down to my parents.” 

Thinking and speaking positively brings its own rewards.  Saying a simple affirmation each morning does make a difference to how you see yourself and how others see you.

So, how do you feel about you?  Loving (and respecting) yourself is, in part, accepting yourself, your body just as you are.  Right here, right now.  When we feel positive about ourselves and have a positive self image, we will be surprised how many things fall into place. 

We may feel compelled to treat ourselves, to meet up with friends, gain more confidence and get out and about more.  We slowly begin to change things in our lives.  We remove things that no longer serve us any purpose.  Whether it’s old clothes, possessions and relationships.  It all starts with the self. 

You don’t need validation from anyone else.  You are good enough just as you are.  Everything else is a bonus.  Ultimately what counts is what you think about you.  You know you are special, precious, valued, beautiful, talented and creative.  The list goes on.

So – where were we?  Oh yes, go stand in front of the mirror………………


*All rights reserved.  No part of this article may be reproduced in any form or by any means without prior written permission of the writer Denise Anthea.*


Posted in Articles, Black British Literature, Black History, Newsletter with tags , , , on October 31, 2010 by


“A people without the knowledge of their past history, origin and culture, is like a tree without roots.”

 Marcus Mosiah Garvey (1887 – 1940)

Every year in October we celebrate BLACK HISTORY MONTH. Black history is with us every second, minute, hour, week, month and year. PANTHER NEWSLETTER’S CULTURE CORNER will attempt to enlighten you with what they never told you in your history class. Our story will be told right here – So enjoy the journey of clarification.


Not widely known, but true…

Did you know…?

Benjamin Banneker developed the first clock built in the United States, studied astronomy and developed an almanac. He also helped to create the layout of the building of streets and monuments for the nation’s capitol Washington D.C.

Lloyd Hall revolutionised the world of food preservation and developed numerous processes for eliminating germs and bacteria from foods, utensils and tools.

Marjorie Joyner changed the course of hair-care history with her “Permanent Waving Machine.”

Patricia Bath is a pioneer in the field of ophthalmology. She created a laser based device to perform cataracts surgery.

Sarah Boone created a device which was the predecessor to the modern ironing boards.

Cherry Matthew created a vehicle that is the precursor to the modern tricycle and then created a special fender for street cars.



Tenkamenin – King of Ghana 1037 – 1075: The country of Ghana reached the height of its greatness during the reign of Tenkamenin. Through his careful management of the gold trade across the Sahara desert into West Africa, Tenkamenin’s empire flourished economically. His greatest strength was in government. Each day he would ride out on horseback and listen to the problems and concerns of his people. He insisted that no one be denied an audience and that they be allowed to remain in his presence until satisfied that justice had been done. His principles of democratic monarchy and religious tolerance make Tenkamenin’s reign one of the great models of African rule.

Shamba Bolongongo – African King of Peace 1600 – 1620:  Hailed as one of the greatest monarchs of the Congo, King Shamba had no greater desire than to preserve peace. Shamba’s love for peace is reflected in a common quote of his: “Kill neither man nor woman, nor child.  Are they not children of Chembe (God), and have they not the right to live?” Shamba was also noted for designing a complex and extremely demorcratic form of government featuring a system of checks and balances.  He also promoted the arts and crafts to such an extent that many were developed to their highest levels during his reign.

Osei Tutu – King of Asante 1680 – 1717:  Osei Tutu was the founder and first king of the Asante nation, a great West African forest kingdom in what is now Ghana. He was able to convince a half dozen suspicious chiefs to join their states under his leadership when according to legend, the Golden Stool descended from heaven and came to rest on Osei Tutu’s knees, signifying his choice by the gods. The Golden Stool became a sacred symbol of the nation’s soul, which was especially appropriate since gold was the prime source of Asante wealth. During Osei Tutu’s reign, the geographic area of Asante tripled in size. The kingdom became a significant power that, with his military and political prowess as an example, would endure for two centuries.

Nandi – Queen of Zululand 1778 – 1826:  The year was 1786. The King of Zululand was overjoyed.  His wife, Nandi, had given birth to a son, his first son, whom they named Shaka, but the King’s other wives, jealous and bitter, pressured him to banish Nandi and the young boy into exile. Steadfast and proud, she raised her son with the kind of training and guidance a royal heir should have.  For her many sacrifices, Nandi was finally rewarded when her son, Shaka, later returned to become the greatest of all Zulu Kings. To this day, the Zulu people use her name, “Nandi,” to refer to a woman of high esteem.

Ja Ja – King of the Opobo 1821 – 1891:  Jubo Jubogha, the son of an unknown member of the Igbo people, was forced into slavery at age 12, but gained his freedom while still young and prospered as an independent trader (known as Ja Ja by the Europeans). He became chief of his people and the head of his Eastern Nigerian City State of Bonny. He later established and became king of his own territory, Opobo, an area near the Eastern Niger River more favourable for trading. As years passed, European governments, mainly British, attempted to gain control of Nigerian trade. Ja Ja’s fierce resistance to any outside influence led to his exile at age 70 to the West Indies by the British.  The greatest Igbo chief of the nineteenth century never saw his kingdom again.

Nehanda of Zimbabwe 1862 – 1898:  Born into a religious family, Nehanda displayed remarkable leadership and organizational skills, and at a young age became one of Zimbabwe’s two most influential religious leaders. When English settlers invaded Zimbabwe in 1896 and began confiscating land and cattle, Nehanda and other leaders declared war. At first they achieved great success, but as supplies ran short, so did battlefield victories. Nehanda was eventually captured, found guilty, and executed for ordering the killing of a notoriously cruel Native Commander. Though dead for nearly a hundred years, Nehanda remains what she was when alive – the single most important person in the modern history of Zimbabwe, and is still referred to as Mbuya (Grandmother) Nehanda by Zimbabwean patriots.

Here ends your history lesson for this month.


 Log on for more CULTURE CORNER next month and remember…

“Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember, you have within you the strength, the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars to change the world.”

Harriet Tubman


‘Til next month – Everyting Bless.

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