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BILL VAUGHAN’S TASTY CLIPS: ‘Empire’ soundtrack to drop; No ‘N-word’ from Lionel

As TV’s hottest new series approaches its finale, the “Original Soundtrack from Season 1 of Empire” will be available March 10 for your listening pleasure. The release features music from cast members Jussie Smollett (Jamal Lyon) and Bryshere Gray a.k.a. Yazz (Hakeem Lyon), alongside Terrence Howard (Lucious Lyon) and guest stars Estelle, Rita Ora, Courtney Love, Juicy J, Jennifer Hudson and Mary J. Blige (both of whom will be seen in the March 11 episode).

Included are the emotional ballad, “Good Enough,” up-tempo track “No Apologies,” the soul-stirring “What Is Love” and never-before-heard songs from upcoming episodes. The digital deluxe version features seven additional songs.

Since Empire’s premiere Jan. 7, the series’ meteoric debut season has broken records while TV critics and social media commentators cannot stop raving about it. Just imagine: Show creator Lee Daniels’ original idea for the lead characters reportedly was to cast Wesley Snipes and Mo’Nique (according to her)!

RESPECT: Just in time to commemorate this weekend’s 50th anniversary of the Selma-to-Montgomery voting rights march, Legacy Recordings has released “Freedom Highway Complete – Recorded Live at Chicago’s New Nazareth Church,” a newly remixed, remastered and expanded edition of the live concert recorded by the Staple Singers in 1965 in support and celebration of that year’s historic civil rights marches in Alabama.

The spirit-filled masterpiece runs from civil rights anthems (“We Shall Overcome”) and traditional gospel (“When The Saints Go Marching In”) to the group’s own original material, including the just-composed title track, inspired by the marches which served as catalysts to the passage of the 1965 Voting Rights Act.

Featuring previously unreleased performances, a spiritually uplifting service and preacher-singer-guitarist Roebuck “Pops” Staples’ intro and outro, “Freedom Highway Complete” puts the listener right in the church and deep in the celebration. The once-in-a-lifetime performance – also featuring the Staple Singers (Pervis, Cleotha, Yvonne and Mavis), the church choir, the band and the congregation – is available as a single CD, a digital release online and in a special 2LP configuration.

TASTY QUIP: “Am I a fan of the N-word? Not coming from the 1960s and ’70s. Whereas the new world has embraced it, I don’t think it’s okay for a black man to use the N-word. I don’t like it – and I am a black man. I don’t think it should be said and become normal. Kanye is giving us the generation shock value. How he carries on for the next 10 years, we will see.” – LIONEL RICHIE to the Daily Mirror on the rapper dropping the N-word 39 times during his performance at the BRIT Awards.

CLIPPETTES: It’s officially a “Training Day” reunion over at that remake of “The Magnificent Seven” as director Antoine Fuqua has cast Denzel Washington and Ethan Hawke.  Chris Pratt (“Guardians of the Galaxy”) also plays a role…

Meagan Good will segue from a recurring role on NBC’s sitcom “Mr. Robinson” starring Craig Robinson to the Fox pilot version of the sci-fi movie “Minority Report”…

Flo Rida has announced that his eagerly anticipated new EP “My House” will arrive everywhere on April 7th with guests Chris Brown, Verdine White, Robin Thicke, Bill Murray, Fitz and Sage the Gemini…

“The Mahalia Jackson Story” is in the works with Bill Duke producing and directing the biopic of the gospel giant…

Eric Benet & Friends featuring Angie Stone and Faith Evans hit The Conga Room on March 6.  Chris Spencer hosts…

Vocalist Phil Perry honors his “role model” Curtis Mayfield with covers of “Gypsy Woman” and “I’m So Proud” (featuring saxman Kim Waters) on his new Shanachie CD, “A Better Man.”

TASTY QUIP: “People are always coming to me, saying, ‘Ice, Why don’t you get into politics?’ I’m like, ‘I got out of crime!’ ” – ICE T on “The Tonight Show”

WASH YO’ MOUTH!: Back in the day, the adults used to pull out what were called “party records” from their brown paper wrappings and get their laughs on. The stars of the genre – such as Redd Foxx, LaWanda Page, Slappy White, Marsha Warfield, Leroy & Skillet, Reynaldo Rey, Mantan Moreland, Jimmy Lynch, Dap Sugar Willie, Wildman Steve and Jimmy Thompson – are being resurrected in a new compilation, “Black & Blue: The Laff Records Collection.” A jewel for true collectors and comedy consumers alike, the handsome, four-CD box set features the best of the comics’ live routines and comes complete with a 45-page book of liner notes enclosed.

TC ON TV: March 6 – “Aziz Ansari: Live At Madison Square Garden” (NETFLIX)…

March 7 – “Welcome to Sweetie Pie’s” (OWN): The Ferguson uprising affects the family…

March 8 – “Millionaire Matchmaker” (BRAVO):  Ex Real Atlanta Housewife Sheree Whitfield gets hooked up…

March 10 – “The Chase” (GSN): Joe Morton and his “Scandal” cast mates raise money for charity… “Powers” (PSN): This comic book-based series is the initial offering on the PlayStation Network. FYI: The Atlanta home of super producer Dallas Austin was used as the team’s HQ!… “Off The Chain” (BOUNCE): Cocoa Brown…

March 11 – “Unsung Hollywood” (TVONE): Richard Roundtree (“Shaft,” “Being Mary Jane”) is profiled… “Black-ish” (ABC): This “Bloopish” episode shows behind-the-scenes footage and outtakes.

HISTORY: SiriusXM host Joe Madison (The Black Eagle) broke the Guinness World Record for the longest marathon hosting of a radio talk show while raising more than $150K to help construct the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture, the final museum planned to be built on the National Mall in Washington, D.C.

Celebrity guests who participated included “Queen of Soul” Aretha Franklin (who may donate her famed inauguration hat to the museum); Stephen A. Smith, Wayne Brady, Rev. Al Sharpton, Tavis Smiley, Ludacris, Dick Gregory, Congressman Charles Rangel, Darius Rucker, Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton, S. Epatha Merkerson, Hill Harper and many others.

TASTY QUIP:  “A lot of times, the youth don’t care to know certain things because they don’t even know that they don’t know. Us speaking on current events and having a say or a voice in certain platforms kind of opens the eyes of the youth and gives them a different perspective to think from.” – T.I. on hip-hop’s influence to DTLR Radio.

“Tasty Clips” is an entertainment column published in The Wave to update readers on the activities and accomplishments of black celebrities and artists on television, in music and at the movies. To reach Bill Vaughan, send email to tastyclips@yahoo.com.