Gap drops the first piece from their Yeezy collaboration

The first piece from the highly anticipated Yeezy x Gap collaboration released Monday night for pre-order.

Around 10 o’clock on Monday night a link finally became searchable on the official Gap website. The link lead to a page where customers were asked to fill out personal information and sizing preferences. Afterwards patrons were ushered into a waiting room for their chance to pre-order the very first Yeezy x Gap.

The piece in question, known simply as the “Round Jacket,” is a baby blue puffer-style jacket. Kanye West himself was seen wearing the piece last week in its blue form, as well as a black variant.

The jacket is retailed at $200 and is currently only available in the U.S. However, Gap has stated their interest in a worldwide release.

While many found the release of the garment surprising others saw it as quite fitting. Considering Tuesday, June 8 is West’s birthday.

The same day of release Gap also wiped their entire Instagram clean aside from a single post promoting the new jacket.

In the comments of said post Gap also cleared up any customer confusion regarding the release.

Also on the website is a list of locations where fans can view “Floating Projections.” These are art installations located in cities like Los Angeles, New York and Chicago that have large scale projections of the Round Jacket.

The Yeezy x Gap collaboration is proving to be a major step in the right direction for Gap after total sales went down in Q4 of 2020. A report from Bloomberg revealed that Gap expects their new line with Yeezy break $150 million in its first full year. Additionally, Gap anticipates revenue in the billions within 8 years.

As of writing, the “Round Jacket” is still available for pre-order on the official Gap website.

Krispy Kreme offers free doughnut for those who’ve received their Covid-19 vaccination

Krispy Kreme is making vaccinations extra sweet with a free doughnut a day  for the rest of the year - CNN

This morning Krispy Kreme announced their Sweet Support program, which rewards customers who’ve received the COVID-19 vaccine with a free original glazed doughnut.

As of today, anyone who shows their COVID-19 Vaccination Record Card will receive the doughnut up until the end of 2021. As if the deal could not get any sweeter, the offer is not one-time only, and can be redeemed every single day.

All guests who have received at least one or two of the shots of the Moderna or Pfizer vaccination or one shot of the Johnson and Johnson vaccination qualify as “vaccinated.”

The new program aims to show support those who choose to get vaccinated and for the U.S. as it continues to roll out COVID-19 vaccinations. With that being said, the offer is only available in the United States.

A recent press release revealed that Krispy Kreme also plans to support health care workers and volunteers administering vaccines, delivering them free doughnuts to various vaccination centers throughout the country. For their own employees, the iconic restaurant is offering up to four hours of paid time off to encourage their staff to get vaccinated.

“We all want to get COVID-19 behind us as fast as possible and we want to support everyone doing their part to make the country safe by getting vaccinated as soon as the vaccine is available to them,” Krispy Kreme Chief Marketing Officer Dave Skena said in a statement.

Krispy Kreme also plants to roll out other promotions as the year continues related to COVID-19 safety and joy.

Nine albums that celebrate women

Today is international women’s day in celebration of women all over the world. To properly commemorate this day, I thought I would release a small article detailing a few of my favorite albums created by incredibly creative and genius women. In no particular order here are some of my favorites along with a small synopsis of each:

Fiona Apple: Fetch the Bolt Cutters Album Review | Pitchfork

Fetch the Bolt Cutters is the cutting edge of singer songwriter. It’s a complete rejection of traditional instrumentals opting for a harshly percussive track to contrast her throaty voice. It’s a very theatrical album each song often following a three act structure or in one case leading into one another. The album itself heavily examines Apple’s condition and personal life experiences. There’s no stone left unturned with Fetch the Bolt Cutters and that’s what’s so interesting about it. A lot of the time its hard to fathom the depths Apple had to go to reach these shattered memories. You’d think the general public doesn’t deserve to hear them but I’d say were very fortunate to say we can.

Solange's New Album, When I Get Home, Is Here | AnOther

Solange’s love letter to her hometown ended up being the best project of 2019. There’s far too many references to Houston to recount in one synopsis, but its fair to say Solange put a lot of care into each and every one of them. She had a hand in every avenue in this project even creating a short film to go along with it. She’s the definition of an everyman (or woman in this case) and this project perfectly exemplifies that.

This is a strange little project created by one of the most creative artists to ever walk this Earth. Each track plays out like a sucker punch, every one more unexpected than the last. However, Bjork still manages to tie each subject matter into the next so deftly you don’t mind the whiplash you get going through the album. Her voice soothes the deepest part of your cochlea, despite her unnatural cadence and inflection. Certainly an album you should listen to before you die.

Aaliyah – Age Ain't Nothing But A Number (1993, Vinyl) - Discogs

The debut album from the late singer Aaliyah influenced the future of R&B more than the media gives her credit for. While a lot of the meanings behind each track remain shady at best the record itself has inspired thousands of artists musically. Frank Ocean even made an official cover of “At Your Best (You Are Love)” on his album Endless. Aaliyah will be known as one of music’s greatest what ifs, plaguing the minds of thousands who wistfully lament a beautiful artists career cut far too short.

Faye Webster: Atlanta Millionaires Club Album Review | Pitchfork

Faye Webster’s third studio album manages to blend so many genres and concepts together its hard to draw the line between styles. As Pitchfork’s Anna Gaca said “Few R&B albums have a pedal steel; few alt-country albums have a rap feature. Faye Webster’s Atlanta Millionaires Club somehow has all of the above.” There’s a whole lot to love about this project and dare I say the cursed phrase “it has a little something for everyone.”

Lana Del Rey - Born to Die - Music

Lana Del Rey takes the tried and true form of female vocalization and makes it that much more interesting on this project. Despite it being her first official record there are many risks taken that set her apart from her contemporaries. Changes in her vocal performance, instrumentals that flip pop on its head, and lyrics exploring the fragility of the feminine form while simultaneously empowering it. What’s not to enjoy?

Kaleidoscope (Kelis album) - Wikipedia

Kaleidoscope is yet another endlessly influential record created by an under appreciated artist. Among the greats like Erykah Badu and Lauryn Hill, Kelis has created her very own spot in the R&B sphere. I genuinely don’t want to spoil anything more about the album so I would say just listen to it and appreciate it.

Lush | Snail Mail

Lush is the indie album by artist Snail Mail which has seen a meteoric rise in recent times. However, once you listen to it its very easy to understand why. Snail Mail has the perfect vocal range for her style of music and often provides the benchmark for how these albums should truly be done. Each guitar strum and drum beat is wonderfully curated by her soft woeful voice. For her first project its a wonderful indicator of things to come.

GARBAGE - Version 2.0: 20th Anniversary Edition - Music

Garbage is the band spearheaded by Shirley Manson who would become one of the most influential female voices experimenting on the already established grunge scene during the 90’s. Her distinct deep toned voice made her lyrics far more poignant and would compliment the bands synth-infused rock sound. This record completely capitalizes on that creating a deeply paranoid yet morbidly fascinating character behind Manson’s voice. She’s inspired plenty of voices heard today and will likely continue as time goes on.

New York clothing brand Noah introduces a clothing recycling program

NOAH - Not Dead Yet - 1

Not Dead Yet is Noah’s solution to textile waste, its a clothing recycling program that offers their consumers the ability to send their used clothing back for a second chance at life.

“We don’t think of clothing as disposable, but sometimes you can outgrow or simply fall out of love with a garment. We’d like to offer you the option to bring or send used Noah items back to us,” said the New York-based brand in an Instagram post.

Old and used products can be either mailed or returned in person to their Soho location to l later be repurposed. Noah plans to wash and repair old garments to be resold or donate them to organizations like New York Cares to get clothes for people in need. Additionally, any clothing they deem unwearable will be recycled and turned into things like wiping rags or insolation.

Textile waste has been one of the rising issues due to fast fashion brands generating thousands of pieces every year to stay on trend. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), in 2018, 17 million tons of textile waste ended up in landfills making up 5.8 percent of the total municipal solid waste generation that year.

What Noah is offering is a alternative in order to slow the continued waste of textiles. “What we’re really excited about is finding ways to keep our clothes in use, rather than forgotten or thrown away,” said the brand.

The current store credit rates Noah is offering is as follows:

Outerwear/Jackets – $40

T-Shirts – $4

Tops & Shirts – $7

Sweatshirts & Sweaters -$15

Everything Else (Pants/Shoes) – $20

With that being said, not all products are eligible to the program. Bags, hats, beanies swimsuits, accessories or jewelry are not able to be returned. Additionally items must have a logo or composition tag intact in order to receive credit.

Kanye West throws in the towel for 2020 election

Kanye West the Atlanta-born rapper turned presidential candidate took to Twitter last night as the ballots were being counted officially conceding in the election whilst proclaiming, “KANYE 2024.”

According to Deadline, West garnered over 60,000 votes in the 12 states where he appeared on the ballot.

Here’s an official state-by-state breakdown from the AP:

Arkansas: 4,040
Colorado: 6,254
Idaho: 3,631
Iowa: 3,202
Kentucky: 6,259
Louisiana: 4,894
Minnesota: 7,789
Mississippi: 3,277
Oklahoma: 5,590
Tennessee: 10,216
Utah: 4,344
Vermont: 1,265

West was a latecomer to the election announcing his bid in early July. In an interview with Forbes, West announced he would be running under an independent party known simply as “The Birthday Party” effectively renouncing his prior support of President Donald Trump.

His initial platform was primarily focused on his personal biblical ideals. In the same interview with Forbes, West denounced vaccines, abortion and the death penalty.

West would later officially reveal his platform on his official website, which focused on religious freedom, equality and peace.

During this period, West made headlines due to his health, rhetoric and constant push to be recognized as a legitimate candidate. In the states where he was not on the written ballot, West encouraged his followers to “WRITE IN KANYE WEST.”

On election day, not only did West reaffirm he had never voted before but he also confirmed he would be voting for himself and himself only.

While Kanye certainly gained a lot of notoriety from his campaign as it turns out he was not the most popular third party candidate of this election. Jo Jorgensen who was running under the libertarian party according to the AP received 1,604,519 total votes as of today.

With that being said these numbers are very little compared to the 70 and 67 million voted held by Biden and Trump respectively. Only time will tell what these numbers will translate to in the real election.

eBay officially launches sneaker authentication program to stop fake products

Online marketplace, eBay, launches their newest authentication program today in order to end the vending of counterfeit sneakers.

The original program, “Authenticity Guarantee” was initially only available for watches over $2,000 in the U.S. However, not unlike their consignment competitors StockX and Goat they’ve extended their program to “new and pre-owned collectible sneakers sold on eBay for over $100 in the U.S.”

The sneaker marketplace has become one of the largest and most active online. According to eBay, there are over half a million sneaker listings on their site each day and every 1.5 seconds a sneaker is sold.

“Authentication has become an expectation for today’s consumers in categories of high passion and high value, and this program makes eBay the most attractive platform for enthusiasts in these categories.” says SVP and General Manager of eBay North America, Jordan Sweetnam.

Here’s how eBay’s new Authenticity Guarantee works: Once a sneakers purchase is made it is first shipped to an independent third-party authentication facility. There said sneaker is given a ” rigorous assessment” before being sent to the buyer via expedited shipping.

The program is also designed to work inversely. For the sellers who offer returns the returning sneakers will go through the verification process again to ensure the same item is given back to the seller.

Verified sneakers are said to come complete with its very own eBay tag signifying its authenticity, similar to StockX’s trademark green tag.

This is not the first time eBay has taken jabs at StockX. Back in April when StockX announced they would be adding a new 3 percent processing fee to all subsequent purchases eBay’s twitter immediately fired back in a tweet that read, “We wanted to take this moment to remind our sneaker community that eBay has ZERO fees for buyers and ZERO fees for sellers $100+. Just sayin’.”

The program for now will only be eligible for “most popular sneaker styles and brands” on the market. However, by early 2021 eBay plans to extend this program to all sneaker purchases over 100 dollars.

Tyler, the Creator encourages his younger fans to vote

Grammy-award winning rapper/singer Tyler, the Creator uploaded an unexpected video on IGTV Monday afternoon urging his younger fans to vote in this year’s election.

“Please, please, if you are young, and your f******g back don’t hurt, go to them polls and cast a f*****g vote,” said Tyler.

Tyler, The Creator who’s real name is Tyler Okonma, has been known in the past for his immature and exaggerated character. While the rapper has voiced his political and social opinions before, never before has he directly asked his fans to do something of this nature. “I know I’m the last person y’all should ever take advice from,” Tyler admits, “but I’m reiterating what everyone else is saying.”

Okonma continues his message while addressing the current social climate: “Y’all was posting black squares and protesting from y’all phone, and rights this, and canceling everybody, n***a pull up. Y’all want a new DA? Pull up.”

According to the Washington Post, in 2016, roughly 43% of registered voters did not fill out a ballot. A year later, Pew Trusts released a study that revealed 62% of unregistered voters weren’t asked to register at all.

Even Okonma himself confesses 2020 will be his first year voting since he became eligible in 2009.

Okonma not voting in the 2016 election came as a shock to some fans who noted that his brand, Golf Wang, released a shirt the same year that featured a superimposed a Hitler-style mustache over President Donald Trump’s lip with the text “We f****d up” printed at the bottom.

However, in the video Okonma doesn’t mention either presidential candidate. Instead, he gives affirms his opinion on educational reforms and the school system. “The s**t that I actually give a f**k about is more art in schools and more music classes in schools and them changing the curriculum,” says Okonma.

Okonma follows a long line of other celebrities and influencers encouraging their fans to vote in this year’s upcoming election. Many of them sharing resources for how to get their fans registered.

What effects this will have on the 2020 election are currently unknown but will likely manifest within the coming months.

Cardi B’s newest single draws criticism from conservatives.

Cardi B - WAP feat. Megan Thee Stallion [Official Audio] - YouTubeCardi B’s newest single “WAP” featuring Megan Thee Stallion has drawn equal amounts of praise and controversy from its lyrical content and racy music video.

Cardi B made headlines this week for releasing her newest single since 2019. WAP which stands for “wet ass pussy” is her first collaboration with 2019 XXL Freshman, Megan Thee Stallion and since its release has remained at #1 in the US as of Aug 8. Its lyrics are suggestive and the music video for it features both rappers seductively dancing in animal print lingerie alongside other female celebrities and live animals.

To many, the song has become a female anthem.  According to Genius, the song exudes “A pervading feeling of female empowerment and sexual liberation.” In such a short time its garnered widespread praise from activists and music fans alike. However, despite many coming to the defense of the song’s raunchy lyrics and accompanying video, that doesn’t mean it has come without criticism.

James P. Bradley, a republican politician, tweeted: “Cardi B & Megan Thee Stallion are what happens when children are raised without God and without a strong father figure. Their new “song” The #WAP (which i heard accidentally) made me want to pour holy water in my ears and I feel sorry for future girls if this is their role model!”

In the same vein, conservative Political Commentator, Ben Shapiro, after reading through the song lyrics on his show, sarcastically said, “This is what feminists fought for. This is what the feminist movement was all about, and if you say anything differently it’s ’cause you’re a misogynist, see?”

The backlash from the single caused several to speak out in its defense including Cardi herself.

In a tweet particularly aimed at Shapiro, she said, “I can’t believe conservatives soo mad about WAP.”

A recent essay from Complex they described the importance of “WAP” saying, “Both Cardi and Megan are powerhouses of female sexuality, independence, and dominance. In a male-dominated genre that is often criticized for misogynistic wordplay toward women, the two rappers have never shied away from taking back the narrative of femininity in hip-hop.”

This is not the first time either rapper has come under criticism for their sexuality and character. Cardi B has been criticized before for her actions when she worked as a stripper and just last month Megan Thee Stallion voiced her distaste over people making fun of her recent issues with fellow artist Tory Lanez.

In a live stream before the release of the single Cardi said: “one thing when it comes to female rappers, people…. they drive you to the top and…. when you up there they wanna put you down.”


Recent developments in the UC college system look promising for minorities

New lawsuit suggests U of California has been considering race in ...The UC announced last week they hit a record-breaking number of Latino admissions to its nine undergraduate campuses for the upcoming school year.

At 36 percent, this is the highest it has ever been, topping last year by two percent. Now, according to UC, Chicanx/Latinx students now comprise the largest ethnic group of admitted freshmen.

“UC continues to see increased admissions of underrepresented students… The incoming class will be one of our most talented and diverse yet, and UC is proud to invite them to join us,” UC President Janet Napolitano said.

Last week, the Trump administration also decided to roll back their original plan to send foreign students back to their home countries if schools go online due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The plan was met with criticism from universities like Harvard and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, which both argued that the policy was created unlawfully.

If this plan was successful, however, it would have affected over 1 million international students currently enrolled in U.S. colleges. These international students who make up a decent portion of the student body were also responsible for contributing $45 billion to the US economy in 2018.

In a similar vein to their previous achievements, the University of California also elected its first black president since the institution’s inception in 1868.

Michael V. Drake, 68, is a distinguished member in the UC community who previously served as chancellor of UC Irvine for nine years, and as the systemwide vice president for health affairs for five.

On the topic of his election, Drake said, “Much has changed in the 15 years since I was given the privilege of becoming chancellor at UC Irvine, but not my absolute belief in this great University and its time-honored mission.”

It would seem Drake’s appointment has come at a very crucial time in the Unites States increasingly tense social climate. What these recent developments represent is a growing trend among many other institutions attempting to narrow the gap between less fortunate students and their privileged counterparts.