Throwback: Catching Up with La La Anthony Cover Story

Catching Up with La La Anthony

By Jahaira Hooker

Star of VH1’s La La’s Full Court Life, La La Anthony is an actress, mother, entrepreneur, and the wife of Carmelo Anthony of the New York Knicks. She has sustained a very successful career working her way up from an early age. One wonders how she balances a high-profile marriage and motherhood along with her many tireless projects, but she seems to have it all together, and we couldn’t be more proud of this Latina and all of her achievements.



This article was originally published in July/August 2014 cover / issue of LatinTRENDS Magazine

You strike me as grounded, authentic, and kind. How do you maintain those qualities? And manage to balance it all?
I think it’s because I know what it’s like to not have, and I really worked hard to get to where I am. I did everything on my own; started really young when I was in high school working on the radio. I think that is what has helped me to remain grounded and humble.


You are hard working. Does this come naturally, or do you attribute it to the Influences of your Latino culture?
Yes, definitely! When you say I come across as genuine and down-to-earth, this is from growing up in a Spanish household—it’s all about family. On any given day, you can find all my titis and tios at the house, and we are all together as a family. We had each other, and we had love, and that’s really important to me. You find that a lot in the Latin community.

 La La Anthony Cover for weblas

Where did you grow up, and what is your most memorable experience growing up?
I grew up in New York City and, by the time I was in middle school, I moved to New Jersey. By high school I had moved to Atlanta, so I moved around quite a bit. Some of my best memories in New York are of the summers just being outside BBQ-ing with family, loud music and having fun.


Your cosmetic line, MOTIVES by La La, launched back in February of 2012. What could you tell me about MOTIVES today?
MOTIVES is doing great! MOTIVES was already a makeup line that was created by my friend. I told her she needed to expand the brand to add more colors specifically for Hispanics and African-American women. I saw there was a void with my own personal experience shopping and having to mix up to four colors at times, just to create the right shade. So, I was happy when the opportunity came to work with Loren [Ridinger, Creative Director and Founder] to create MOTIVES by La La, essentially providing something for everybody, which is what makes the brand so popular today.


Who is the ‘MOTIVES’ woman?
The motives woman is confident. She could be a mom, a wife, a working woman… She comes in all forms. She knows what she likes, and wants to look good doing so. At the time of this interview La La was on her way to the airport headed to L.A. to promote an early screening of her new film ‘Think Like a Man Too.”


You are currently busy promoting, Think Like a Man Too, in theaters June 20th. How excited are you?
Obviously, I am very excited! This is the sequel to Think Like a Man, and it takes place in Vegas. It’s a battle of the sexes to see who could “do Vegas” better ‒guys vs. girls,‒ and all sorts of things happen while there. It’s a movie that will have you laughing the entire two hours.


Can we expect more films from you in the future? 
Actually, I am also on a new television series called Power ‒that’s on the Starz network right now‒ with rapper 50 Cent [Curtis Jackson,] who is the executive producer. It just premiered its first season, and we already got picked up for a second, so there’s definitely a lot more to come from that.


Here at LatinTRENDS we love watching La La’s Full Court Life, now in its 5th season. Can we look forward to a 6th?
I don’t think so. It has been a great ride, and it has done so well, but I have so many other projects going on that I just don’t have that much time. Plus, it’s always good to go out with a bang. You don’t want to go out when you can’t give people anymore. You want to go out on top.


Moving on to The Love Playbook, did you enjoy the process of writing your own book?
I definitely enjoyed it, and I was so happy when it went #1 on the New York Times bestseller list. It’s great to be able to reach out and inspire. You start talking to young women, and a lot of them don’t have great friends and family to talk to and guide them. That was what pushed me to write the book, and now it is doing so well. People who are so grateful and appreciative stop me constantly because of it. It has been a really great experience. Update: The sequel to the love playbook is currently being made into a movie with La La and Queen Latifa as producers.


Will there be a follow up book?
Definitely going to have a follow up, and the next thing I’m doing with that actual book is turning it into to a movie. I feel like it can be a great film, but yeah, definitely a follow-up book.

(This article was originally published in July/August 2014 cover / issue of LatinTRENDS Magazine)

What You Didn’t Know about Celia Cruz

celia 3

Úrsula Hilaria Celia de la Caridad Cruz Alfonso, or for short Celia Cruz, was one of the most accomplished singers of the 20th century. Hailing from humble beginnings in the poor neighborhood of Santos Suarez in Havana, Cuba, her mother knew immediately that she was destined to be a singer.

It was on the radio in diverse Santos Suarez where Cruz would grow up listening to all types of music. Rumba, mambo, guaracha, bolero, cha-cha, salsa and son cubano was apart of her musical education. As a youth Cruz and her sister were taken to cabarets to sing by their aunt. At radio stations, Cruz sang tango “Nostalgias” (unrequited love songs) to win cakes during the “Hora del Te” broadcast, often coming first place.

Her piercing and powerful voice carried a great warmth. At a music conservatory, her own professor took notice of it and told her to drop out and let her talent shine as she was already gaining momentum on the radio for her recorded and live performances in the late 1940s.

Her vocal style was distinctive because it incorporated pregon, the wails of street vendors (usually fishmongers and peanut vendors). As an Afro-Cubana, her early music was influenced by santeria (Cuban blend of Christian and traditional African religious music) songs which used the religious African dialect of Lucumi.

After leaving school she was the singer for a dance group, Las Mulatas del Fuego. In 1950 she was the lead singer of Sonora Matancera, one of the most prominent Cuban orchestras. But that didn’t come easy, because when she joined Sonora, she was replacing a previous singer and she had to gain the public’s support. By her bandmates sticking up for her, Cruz eventually became well love not only in Cuba, but throughout all of Latin America. Slowly, she was becoming the leading female voice of modern salsa at a time when the music was dominated by men.

Soon, Cruz’s life will change forever, for better and for worst in the early 1960s. While travelling with Matancera in Mexico, Fidel Castro came to power turning Cuba into a communist country. With all but one bandmember refusing to go back under such a regime, Castro issued them a lifetime ban. Over a year later she would take up residency in New Jersey and marry Matancera trumpet player Pedro Knight.

In the mid 1960s, she followed the New York music scene which had musicians from all over Latin America and the Caribbean. Outside of salsa, she also sang guaracha and all the other types of Latin music she grew up listening to. This was a time of experimentation when many artists would blend and mix many different musical styles and perform with musicians from different styles of music.

By the 1970s, Cruz made music with Tito Puente, Johnny Pacheco, and the Fania AllStars. She had a catch phrase, Azucar, which she used to energize her audience and band. Also, she became a fashion icon because of her bold, daring, and wild costumes and wigs.

In the 1980s and 1990s, she performed and was featured on songs with Wyclef Jean, Dionne Warwick, Patti Labelle, and David Byrne. By the early 2000s, The Celia Cruz Foundation was created in order to help impoverished students that wanted to study music.

Celia Cruz made music until her death from brain cancer in 2003. Within the 55 years that she made music, she released 75 albums, 23 of which went gold. Throughout her career, Cruz was honored as the Queen of Salsa, La Guarachera de Cuba, and the Queen of Latin Music.

Fun Facts

  • She was awarded an American National Medal of the Arts
  • For the 2015-2016 TV lineup, Telemundo will have a musical drama about The Queen of Salsa
  • While with La Sonora Matancera, Cruz and the group appeared in five motion pictures
  • She sang the spot for WQBA in Miami
  • There is an exhibit in Washinton D.C. dedicated to her


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Mayans MC Spinoff Begins Casting

Photo provided by FX

Photo provided by FX

The Mayans will ride again, but this time they will be the stars of their own series, which will begin casting in March 2017. The new show titled Mayans MC will follow the life of a new recruit to the Mayans motorcycle gang, which was featured on the show Sons of Anarchy.

The new show titled “Mayans MC,” will follow the life of a new recruit, EZ Reyes, who will be joining the motorcycle gang as he and other members are “at odds with the cartel and scrambling within their personal lives,” according to, a casting/talent notice website.

According to the website, the show will take place along the “California-Mexico border” and probably be set in Los Angeles.

If the show is anything like the series it is spinning off from it is sure to be hit for the premium cable channel FX. According to, SOA was the network’s highest-rated drama.

The first episode will be penned by Elgin James, a former straightedge anti-neo-Nazi gang member from Boston who robbed drug dealers to give the money to charities, according to

Series creator, Kurt Sutter, knew James was the perfect person to co-produce and help shepherd the show.

I wanted to find a strong, unique Latino voice…because I didn’t think a white guy from Jersey should be writing about Latin culture and traditions…Elgin is that voice.”

The show will also begin shooting in March 2017.

Grey’s Anatomy Star Possibly Returning to Hit Show

Twitter Photo

Twitter Photo

Rumors have been swirling that Sara Ramirez, aka Callie Torres on Grey’s Anatomy, might make a cameo on the hit show during the back half of season 13.

When we last saw Ramirez, her character left the show to pursue romance and medicine in New York with her young daughter in tow after agreeing to joint custody with her ex-wife, Arizona, played by Jessica Capshaw.

Unlike other characters that were on the show, Torres was neither killed off or completely written out, and Ramirez’s character still has strong ties to Grey’s Anatomy, which opens the doors to many possible cameo appearances.

On the show, her daughter Sofia is best friends with Zola Shepherd, Meredith Grey‘s daughter, and the shared custody agreement between Torres and Arizona leaves room for the both to interact in the future.

Also, when Ramirez left she simply stated that “she needed a break” after a decade, and unlike Katherine Heigl, Patrick Dempsey and Isaiah Washington, she has not burned any bridges with showrunner Shonda Rhimes, according to the producer.

I love the woman and I want to do everything for her. It all worked out in that sense.”

According to TV Line, there is a possible episode that will take place on an airplane and that is possibly where Callie Torres might pop up.

Grey’s Anatomy returns on Jan. 19 on ABC at 8 p.m. EST.



#FourthHarmony Contract Up in the Air with Camila Exit

While Camila Cabello‘s exit from Fifth Harmony left many fans aghast and confused, especially with the social media back and forth with her ex-bandmembers, the fate of the remaining four singers as a girl group has been halted.

Before Cabello’s untimely departure, the five bandmates had the option to resign their individual contracts for Fifth Harmony after it expired on Dec. 18.

If all members of the band had returned the group would have had a guaranteed third recording deal on the table with Epic Records, but with half of the remaining songstresses that are left making music outside of what is being dubbed Fourth Harmony during their free time, the record label is beginning to wonder if it is worth renewing, according to

The Cuban singer breaking out and leaving the group has been in the cards from the inception of the group. Although Cabello is most famous for being a part of the quintet, she initially tried out as a solo singer on the American version of X-Factorand once assigned the option to be in the group or hightail it she stayed in what was initially called 1432, until music legend, L. A. Reid suggested a name change for the band.

In a 2012 performance on the show, Demi Lovato is seen saying that Cabello “shined” the brightest out of the group while singing Taylor Swift’s “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together.”

Over a million in album sales later, Cabello, while still happy to be a part of the group did express concern over not pursuing her own individual musical tastes, which she described as similar to guitar wielding maestros “Ed Sheeran” and “John Mayer.”

Not only has Cabello mentioned her love for slower, more soulful songs a lá Zayn Malik from One Direction, but she has managed to rack up two hit songs outside the group as a co-lead with Shawn Mendes for “I Know What You Did Last Summer,” and she worked with Machine Gun Kelly on “Bad Things.” She also received a songwriting credit on each single.

But where does this leave Ally Brooke, Dinah Jane, Lauren Jauregui and Normani Kordei? Well, Kordei and Jauregui both let it slip that they had solo plans long before Cabello left the group, but neither had planned on permanently going it on their own anytime soon.

This leaves Ally Brooke, and Dinah Jane who was Cabello’s biggest supporter during a lot of the behind the scenes troubles, the most in the lurch if Fifth Harmony doesn’t become Fourth Harmony.

Instead of the four remaining singers wasting their time fighting with Cabello on social media as to whether she was kicked out or left the group, Jane and Brooke should be rallying Kordei and Jauregui to remain in the band in hopes to solidify at least one more album, because the clock is ticking and reps at Epic Records will need a reason to believe that the foursome can make harmonious music together.


CHiPs Gets a Facelift


Photo by

The classic 70s show, CHiPs, a police procedural following the lives of two California Highway Patrolmen will get an R-rated silver screen facelift next year.

Leading the new cast will be Michael Peña of Ant-Man (2014) and The Martian (2015) fame. Peña will take up the role of Frank “Ponch” Poncharello, the flirtatious and troublemaking motorcycle cop that was originally played by Erik Estrada.

The straight man to Peña’s Ponch will be Dax Shepard who starred in the television series Parenthood (2010-2015) and will be playing stick-in-the-mud Jon Baker.

Also in the film are Adam Rodriguez and Arturo del Puerto.

CHiPs will hit theaters March 24, 2017.


Jessica Camacho Joins The Flash

Photo by Jeff Lorch

Photo by Jeff Lorch

Actress Jessica Camacho of Sleepy Hollow fame will join superhero show The Flash in the back half of the third season.

Camacho will be playing comic book character Gypsy.

Gypsy, whose alter ego is Cynthia “Cindy” Reynolds, is in the Justice League and often goes on missions with fellow member Vibe in Detroit. Gypsy is also a member of the Birds of Prey supergroup, which features Vixen, Oracle, the Huntress and more.

Her powers include illusion casting, invisibility and precognition.

Are you looking forward to seeing Gypsy and Vibe, played by Carlos Valdes, team up?

Will the Gypsy character join the Gotham Sirens movie, which is being headlined by the newly married Margot Robbie?

Sound off below in the comments section.




Gerardo Gabriel Santana, mejor conocido por sus millones de fans como El Poeta Callejero es un joven al que podríamos definir como tímido y comedido. Mucho más allá de la súper estrella de música urbana nos encontramos conversando con un joven agradable, quien piensa detenidamente sus respuestas y quien lleva como bandera y mensaje, la justicia social.

Este deseo de igualdad y justicia social incentivado en gran parte por sus orígenes humildes y la pobreza que vivió en la niñez se ve claramente reflejado en las letras de sus canciones.

A pesar de los rumores sobre su fanatismo religioso, incoherencias o largos silencios en recientes entrevistas, el poeta callejero se define como “un tigre decente”, decidido a hacer lo correcto y a luchar por ser una mejor persona con el único arma que conoce, su arte, sus letras, su poesía que nace y se alimenta en el lugar que lo vio nacer y crecer: La Calle.



El título del álbum es “Tigre Decente” y en eso es lo que me es convertido, en una persona hábil para desenvolverse en el lugar donde me tocó vivir y decente porque soy correcto.

Dentro del álbum hay una canción que le dedico a mi hija y se titula mi bendición. Se ha hecho una serie especial y diferente que se usó con los temas del CD., un video de 40 minutos donde se desarrolla una historia con la música del álbum y que cuenta lo que es un tigre decente y porque.


Es realmente difícil.


Yo crecí en la calle, nací en la calle en la entrada de una iglesia. Así fueron mis inicios y toda mi vida involucrado en la calle y poeta porque yo amo la poesía y la gente me empezó a llamar poeta pero qué tipo de poeta , bueno uno callejero.


Me importa mucho lo que sucede a mí alrededor, soy una conciencia viviente que analiza lo que me rodea. Mi objetivo principal es ser un mensajero de lo que me rodea y exponerlo en mi arte.


La desigualdad, la pobreza y que los que están en posición de ayudar por sus conocimientos o influencia no lo hacen. Porque beneficiarse solo unos pocos no entendiendo que todos somos iguales.


Yo solamente evito las conversaciones banales y triviales.


A los hijos de Dios, los planes del enemigo, les terminan favoreciendo. La gente puede llegar a pensar que es una estrategia, entonces yo lo tomo con una actitud positiva y agradezco a Dios.


Mira yo vengo de una casa que tenía una lona como techo, que el piso era de tierra, que las camas tenían chinches  y  quemabamos los colchones con trementina en las noches para matarlas y aun así yo era feliz. Imagínate ahora estoy en mi casa con aire acondicionado, con gente apoyándome, siempre con más deseos de superarme y motivado a dar lo mejor al público.


Estamos coordinando una gira próximamente, espero verlos pronto y síganme en instagram a @elpoetacallejero






Famous for her hips movements, her huge afro and an imposing presence that quickly grab the attention anywhere she goes, Dana Danelys De los Santos, better known in the music world as Amara La Negra, is an urban artist who has earned the respect of millions of fans since she began singing professionally in 2013.

This artist, with her light-colored eyes and impressive beauty began her career in entertainment at the age at 4 years-old when she won a beauty pageant for girls in Univision’s “Sabado Gigante” TV show.

“I later was part of a segment where children would talk with Don Francisco. That taught me to be self-confident. Thanks to that opportunity, I became a dancer at the Latin Grammys, Premios Lo Nuestro and for many important performers,”

said Amara.

Born and raised in Miami by Dominican parents, from an early age she felt she had art and music in her blood.

“I live for the stage. The adrenaline I feel when I grab the microphone and see the audience can’t compare to anything else. I live for that moment. I live for music,”

said the exuberant singer of Dominican descent.

Despite her years of preparation in dance, acting and singing schools, the performer has closely encountered the ugly face of racism and the rejection of some media – Latino media in particular-for her skin color.

“They never consider that a woman like me can represent Latinas. They are always looking for someone like Shakira, Sofia Vergara or Jennifer Lopez. I am fighting to break this stereotype because I am proud of who I am, of my roots, of my “bad hair” and I know that many Latinas identify with me. “



One of the most important moments in this 25-year-old artist’s career was having the chance to play Celia Cruz in a documentary about the life of the legendary salsa singer.

“To me, Celia Cruz was an inspiration for her charisma and things she was able to achieve. I grew up listening to Tina Turner, La India and Olga Tañon. These women gave me strength and inspired me to want to be like them.”

She said

On several occasions, Amara has been harshly criticized and deemed immoral due to her song lyrics and her sexy movements. This does not worry her, as she knows that the same people who attack her are the same people who later support and applaud North American stars such as Rihanna or Miley Cyrus who has a similar style.

The singer said to be grateful for her success, and told us that her mother has been her rock, her support in this challenging career.

“My mom is my other half, my heart; and you cannot live without your heart.”

She describes herself as fresh, daring and very bold.

She is certain that her career is on the rise and says that she can feel and taste success already. When the time comes to say thank you, she includes her “haters” for being a part of her success and for giving her the drive to do everything they say cannot be done.

“I’m not afraid of anything, I take a chance and jump and, what I don’t know something, I learn. And as my mother says, “Nothing ventured, nothing gained”


Mariah Carey and Billionaire Beau on a Break

While ending things with Nick Cannon, Mariah Carey found a new vision of love with billionaire businessman James Packer. A divorce and seven months later Carey was engaged to the investor and philanthropist in Jan. 2016.

Sadly, after a nine-month engagement the new chapter in her life didn’t last long as Packer and Carey are putting a break on their nuptials.

This comes as Us Weekly reports that the couple hadn’t seen each other for a month after Carey failed to show up to Packer’s birthday party in Greece.

Since then, Carey has been seen with ex-husband Cannon and their twins for a Halloween party. The breakup also explains why Mariah Carey canceled the South American leg of her tour.

Many cite Carey’s extravagant lifestyle and her new dalliance with becoming a reality television star as the main points of contention for the separation.

The still married Australian businessman is known for being ultra private and Carey’s lavish ways and lack of a relationship with his family made him question if marrying the songstress was the right move.

However, friends of Carey say that Packer’s “behavior” and him not being “mentally healthy,” and therefore not present in their partnership was a contributing factor according to E! News.

A press release by Packer and Carey acknowledging the state of their relationship is on the horizon. While the two are putting a pause on getting married, friends from both camps say that they are both open to reuniting in the future if they can find a way to get to a better place according to Women’s Day.