Showing posts with label entertainment. Show all posts
Showing posts with label entertainment. Show all posts

Saturday, September 5, 2015

What does it mean to be a HERO Caitlyn Jenner ?

Photo credit : Caitlyn Jenner

Ever since Caitlyn Jenner came out as Transgender on the cover of Vanity Fair magazine and received the prestigious Arthur Ashe Courage Award live at The Espy awards there is still an ongoing debate concerning what a " Hero" actually is. Amongst many people on social media this is still a hot topic with various memes and statuses arguing that Caitlyn Jenner should have not received this award and that she is not courageous, brave or a " Hero" for just deciding to live her life as a woman after 65 years. They go on to compare her to the men and woman injured while serving our country that still have the spirit to persevere and break records in sports as being the " real " heros. While I agree these individuals should be commended and are definitely courageous ...I am not so sure that I believe Caitlyn Jenner doesn't deserve the same title as well.

About the award as copied from  

" The Ashe Award is one of the most prestigious in sports. Recipients reflect the spirit of Arthur Ashe, possessing strength in the face of adversity, courage in the face of peril and the willingness to stand up for their beliefs no matter what the cost. The award is inspired by the life that Ashe lived, using his fame and stature to advocate for human rights, although, at the time, those positions may have been unpopular and were often controversial. From speaking out against apartheid in South Africa to revealing to the world his struggle with AIDS, Ashe never backed away from a difficult issue, even though doing so would have been easier. Winners of the Ashe Award strive to carry on Ashe's legacy in their own lives - - inspired by those who do so each day."

In my opinion many people acting out were not even aware of the criteria that Mr.Ashe intended for the award recipient and we saw people jumping on a bandwagon mostly for a chance to be snarky about a still taboo topic ...transgenderism. On the scarier side Caitlyn received death threats and hate tweets.
Caitlyn Jenner has not just decided to become a woman overnight. This is something she has struggled with since she was a young child. Due to obvious pressures of society , on top of being a world renowned Olympian, Caitlyn stopped an earlier attempt at transitioning and further hid her true feelings with secrets and lies. Ultimately after much soul searching  Caitlyn decided she rather live as her authentic self than go on any further  and in doing so , being the public figure she is, faced a media firestorm where no one could have guessed the outcome. Many people were accepting however this is not the case for the average person who is transgendered out of the public's eye.

As seen in Caitlyn's new docu-series on Entertainment Television " I Am Cait" we see a woman willing to take on the burden for a life she is just becoming a part of ( not trying to be a martyr) and just beginning to understand. I Am Cait was filmed as she just transitioned and they even covered the ESPY award and Cait's now infamous acceptance speech. I see a Cait who is taking on the role of advocate and is trying her best to stay humble, aware of her privilege, while shedding a light on a topic that rarely gets the attention it needs and deserves. The facts are, whether you are aware or not, that people who are transgender have the highest murder/suicide rate in our world today all because they are trying to live their lives as who they really are. Just think about that for a moment.Really think about it as if it were as real to you as it is to them.How can anyone not think this needs to be addressed/stopped?!
Many people who are transgendered are homeless, can not find employment due to discrimination, can not find health care and often times are shunned by their families left to fend for themselves. In watching I Am Cait we are seeing ground breaking television spotlighting what it means to be transgendered and hopefully normalizing it as it should be and there is still a long way to go. Caitlyn has cleverly inserted many new friends who are transgendered so they may share their stories which are unique as they are...they themselves being skeptical of Caityln as their new spokesperson however you can see they are genuinely appreciative for the media attention and awareness that I Am Cait is bringing to the community. This no way negates all the pioneers that have come before, and there has been many...the best part is Cait knows this and makes us aware she is only a vessel. I am not sure what your definition of a " Hero" is but I do know the way I see it...Caitlyn Jenner is courageous, brave and a " Hero" for making an attempt to save lives while you sit on your couch and judge her.

For information on how you can help

Watch Caitlyn Jenner on " I Am Cait" Sunday's 8/7C on Entertainment Televsion 
Follow Caitlyn on Twitter @Caitlyn_Jenner

Follow the show @IAmCait

Follow me @BillyCharlesNY

Monday, March 24, 2014

Gina Cutillo... Behind The Music!

Gina Cutillo is getting ready for world domination! Already a well established  singer, songwriter and recording artist  ( resume includes songs on Nickelodeon, MLB baseball, FOOD Network and Oprah Winfrey's OWN Network just to name a few ) she has recently decided to add television host to her list of titles. Gina is currently starring in a weekly entertainment show named after herself  which is airing live weekly on make no mistake she is still all about the music! Now more than ever! Getting ready to release a new album and  also having recently taken on the role of wife and new mother,  Gina has redefined herself and what her artistry means to her...  through the joy that this new challenge has brought to her life ( and career )  there have also been some growing pains along the way . Gina however takes them in stride and knows that life isn't always roses and daisies. Gina tells me that its in these times we can learn and evolve which she has done seemingly effortlessly. It's in these peaks and valleys that Gina was able to channel her triumphs and tribulations into her writing.
 Gina's magnetism is undeniable and this comes through in her performances be it in concert or while hosting her show. Gina possesses a sharp wit and is natural funny in an organic way which isn't easy to come by these days. There is also her artistic side which comes through in an array of emotions conveyed in her writing as well as  in the way she sings her songs. Recently I had the privilege  to go " Behind The Music"  picking  her sexy brain to ask the questions that many of her fans want the answers to! 
So " Let's Go! " ... kick back and relax getting to know Gina Cutillo the way I see it Xx Billy Charles 

" Behind The Scenes" on a Gina Cutillo and co photo shoot !

BC: I hear your working on a new album... what is the vibe with the sound? Is there a title yet that you can share with my readers? 

GC: The vibe is sexy. Its also fun and artistic at times. There's one song that will be on the album called "Pop Hysteria" that I fully wrote over a beat box. Very artistic and fun. I wasn't worried about creating huge hooks and big choruses. Funny thing it's super hooky and super catchy!!! I don't have a title yet. But the running joke is "Gina Cutillo at 128 BPM" a few songs are set in 128 BPM (beats per measure) - but I will name the album when all the songs are completed. I like the album title to encompass the overall statement of my songs. 

BC: How will the new songs be different from your previous recordings? 

GC: Well I'm in a different place in my life so that will always be portrayed in my music. I almost want to say more reflective so far. Tempos are a little slower on some.  As for the writing process I started with researching and choosing some really interesting synth sounds influenced from Sweden. I also did some lyric writing first too on a couple which is very unlike my process. 

BC: How has being a mother influenced your writing or you as an artist? 

Gina and her son Cole

GC: Becoming a mother is something that changes and rocks your world like no other. Nothing can prepare you for this type of change. So at first I wasn't even writing too busy having late night feeding sessions with the little guy. Lol But then it all just sorta " bursted " bursted out! I also think this is where the reflective part of my current songs are coming from. You think harder as a mother which has made me love harder as a person. 

BC: What are some new goals that you would like to achieve regarding your career? 

GC: My goals have always been the same. #1 hit. Grammy. World Tour. These types of goals will drive you to success every time. And insanity.. ;) 

BC: Who are you digging right now on today's music scene? 

GC: I'm a huge lover of music. I'm always listening to pop radio. I like to hear what's happening and I have always loved nice commercial sing along songs. I'm also digging into my archives listening to some Sheryl Crow, Oasis and Goldfrapp lately. 
Ellie Goulding is super special and talented, I'm enjoying her a lot. 

Gina with her long time friend and guitarist Ron Labriola

BC: What advice would today's Gina Cutillo give a younger Gina just starting out? 

GC: Don't be so stubborn! Yes Billy I was more stubborn in the past then I am now. Lol Also let go of things that aren't working a lot quicker. 

BC: Describe your creative process and the way you write...

GC: Hmm... usually I feel this jolt of inspiration like the song is already there inside and has decided this is the day it's coming out. Something like going into labor. I run to my MAC open up a protools session and start recording. Sometimes I will write a beat 1st or as I said lately it's been a synth part then start singing away to a melody that just comes out. I will then break out my guitar so on and so forth. Come to think of it - it's very similar to birth minus the intense pains.  haha unless you delete a whole writing session like I did once. Which left me on the floor curled up crying like a baby... yea that was painful. 

BC: What are some  of the things that inspire you in your creative process? 

GC: People I'm surrounded by. The love I'm feeling for someone. The experiences I have had and am having. Music on the radio. 

Craig, Cole and Gina

Gina and her husband Craig

BC: What is an average day like for you? 

GC: A whirlwind of very different events. I go from feeding my son breakfast to answering business calls to showing my son how to play with puzzles to my laptop with a new song I'm working on. Sometimes it's very busy but I choose for it to be. I do take down time too, it's very necessary. 

BC: If you had a dream vacation what would you be doing and where would you go? 

GC: I take dream vacations haha - My husband and I love to travel and have been to many Caribbean Islands. St Lucia was my favorite. We also have been to Belize, the Mayan Ruins were amazing. My other favorite outside of Caribbean was England. It's been a couple of years since we have had a proper vacation so this December we are going away. The baby will be almost 3 so we are ready to show him the beauty of blue waters and white sand. I'd like to go to Hawaii. And of course Italy is a must! 

Gina Cutillo and the men behind the music her band...

BC:Tell my readers what's coming up next for Gina Cutillo.... 

GC: I will be releasing my next single "Fly (Feel Love Tonight)" which will coincide with a video that I am shooting as we speak. This song is a #1 hit. I sing it and tear up almost every time.  I'm also performing at some festivals this summer with my band: Ron Labriola, Zeke Zuclich and John Von on May 3rd Popfest at Dewey Beach, DE. Also playing Jersey Shore Festival May 17th and several others so be sure to hit up for more updates!

Please follow Gina Cutillo on Twitter @GinaCutillo and click the photo above to go to her reverb nation music page!

For booking info contact