BILL VAUGHAN’S TASTY CLIPS: Celebrities list their Tasty Clips Faves for 2017

As we close the door on 2017, it is time for our annual FAVES edition. Here’s a compendium of those things that most gave us joy in this year of the eclipse!

MOVIES: “Get Out,” “Split,” “Logan,” “Wind River,” “Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End,” “3 Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri,” “Roman J. Israel,” “Ingrid Goes West,” “Blade Runner 2049,” “Mudbound,” “Dunkirk,” “Beauty and the Beast,” “The Boss Baby,” “Wonder Woman,” “Alien: Covenant,” and “Star Wars: The Last Jedi.”

DOCUMENTARY: “The Rape of Recy Taylor.”

TV: “Game of Thrones,” “The Deuce,” “Feud: Bette and Joan,” “News One Now,” “Being Mary Jane,” “Fear The Walking Dead,” “Desus & Mero,” “The Untitled Action Bronson Show,” “The Carmichael Show” and “Survivor,”

MUSIC: Jay-Z – “4:44,” Lorde – “Melodrama,” Raul Midon – “Bad Ass and Blind,” Mali Music – “The Transition of Mali,” SZA – “Ctrl,” “Steve Winwood Live,” Damian ‘Jr. Gong’ Marley – “Stony Hill,” Sheryl Crow – “Be Myself,” Daley – “The Spectrum,” Tedeschi Trucks Band – “Live From The Fox Oakland” and Musiq Soulchild – “Feel The Real.”

CONCERT: Wyclef Jean showed his supreme chops with but a DJ/keyboardist in tow. The former Fugees mainstay rotated from one instrument to another with verve — not to mention the wicked free-styling. Maceo Parker rocked NYC’s BB King’s on a Sunday night this fall like a tireless grandmaster of funk, soul and jazz. And that was a day after Remy Ma rocked the joint! Nothing prepared me for the miracle that is Raul Midon at City Winery Atlanta.

THEATER: “The Bodyguard,” starring Deborah Cox, had everybody on their feet partying and singing during the tour encore at Charlotte’s Blumenthal Theatre.

TRAVEL: NYC’s One World Observatory is the closest thing to seeing Manhattan and its neighboring hoods from a helicopter. An emotional must-visit destination.

DINING: Taste of the Nation, Melba’s (Harlem), Kuroshiro (Atlanta) and Blaze Pizza.

EVENTS: FOX Upfront (NYC) is still the crème of the crop. No need to tamper with a sure-fire winner. Red Bull Curates BrunchBeat transformed Norman (Brooklyn) with a combination of art, jazz, a daring DJ, Instagram worthy plates and wake-up cocktails. Add some of the savviest young social media sensations and it became the gathering you didn’t want to leave.

And now some FAVES from our esteemed celebrity guests:


LUENELL – Comic/Actress (“Lopez”) MOVIES: “The Big Sick,” “Girls Trip” and “My Friend Dahmer.” TV: “Feud: Bette and Joan” was perfection. “The Deuce,” “Ballers,” “Black-ish,” Roland Martin’s “News One Now,” and “The New Edition Story.” MUSIC: Andra Day is giving me life. Loving Kendrick Lamar and Sam Smith.   BOOKS: Jennifer Lewis’ “Mother of Black Hollywood” and Bobby Brown’s “Every Little Step.” Not only did Bobby lose Whitney, he lost the child they had. So that whole relationship is purged off the face of the earth like it was a bad dream. I really respect him because he turned his life around. He’s got a new wife, kids, a happy life and his cooking line. Even though Bobby used to be … , he’s really the success story actually. TRAVEL: Seychelles Islands to do a show for a sheik. It was very upscale. They put me on Emirates Airlines, which is the Bellagio Hotel of air travel. It was bananas. CONCERTS: Goapele, Keyshia Cole and MC Hammer resurrected at Staples Center. I’m from Oakland and have known Hammer for 33 years. My daughter got to dance backup for him. To sit in that audience where Michael Jackson’s funeral was, where the Lakers play, and see my daughter up there buck buck bucking to “Too Legit To Quit” was a full circle moment. Kindred the Family Soul does a joint at Warmdaddy’s in Philly every Monday that is funkier than a mosquito’s tweeter. Thelma Houston is killing the game on the low at 74. Saw Melba Moore who still got her pipes, baby.

DAVID ALAN GRIER – Actor (“The Big Sick”)/Writer ( – MOVIE: “Okja.” “Get Out” was the most fun. MUSIC: Chance the Rapper, Serpent With Feet’s “Blisters.” BOOK: “How To Survive In Prison” DINING: Providence in L.A. There are only two restaurants that have three Michelin stars and it was amazing. It was very high end. Then there was Totoraku. It’s a storefront with a Japanese chef, eight or nine tables in a non-descript restaurant in West L.A. You have to personally know someone to bring you in. No pomp, no circumstance. It’s just food. I’m kind of over the chef’s tasting menu where you’re held hostage. I ate at Eleven Madison Park in New York City. I mean literally the food started at five and it was still going at nine!

JB SMOOVE – Comic/Actor/Author (“The Book of Leon”) – MOVIE: “Logan” was awesome. I liked the little girl. She was sick with it. TV: I love “The Walking Dead.” I’m starting to like “Fear The Walking Dead” more now. BOOK: Kevin Hart’s “I Can’t Make This Up: Life Lessons.” TRAVEL: The Bahamas. I’ve been there plenty of times but it’s also about the company. DINING: Jikoni Café in Norfolk, Virginia. This little vegan restaurant is also a book store and has poetry readings.

Aimee Garcia

AIMEE GARCIA – Actress (“Lucifer”) – TV: “The Handmaid’s Tale” and “Broad City.” MOVIES: “Call Me By Your Name.” Timothée Chalamet is incredible! BOOKS: “Crazy Is My SuperPower” by AJ Mendez Brooks. It’s witty, hysterical and heartbreaking. DINING: Night + Market Song has the best Thai food in the city. CONCERT: Bruno Mars. His dance moves are epic!

ADEWALE AKINNUOYE-AGBAJE – Actor (“Ten Days in the Valley”)/Writer/Producer/Director (“Farming”) – DESIGNERS: Issey Miyake and Yamamoto, because their stuff is like art. It’s original, quirky and really comfortable. They use fabrics that just feel great on the body. Also they make clothes big enough for big brothers. That’s the secret. DINING: On March 7, I dined with Princess Anne and my family when awarded with an honorary PhD in Literature by King’s College, where I studied. TRAVEL: We shot “Wetlands” in a coastal town in New Jersey in the spring and it was a beautiful place. I was surprised because I hear so many things about Jersey and they’re not always good. I was like; they don’t know what they’re talking about. This is cool.

JAMES PICKENS JR. – Actor (“Grey’s Anatomy,” “The X-Files”)/Producer (“One Last Prayer”) – MOVIE: “Get Out” was really smart and original. “American Made” kind of flew under the radar, but it was an interesting film. I’m not a real Tom Cruise fan, but he did a great job. MUSIC: Bruno Mars. TRAVEL: San Ysidro Ranch near Montecito. DINING: My wife’s restaurant, The Black Bottom Southern Café in North Hollywood, has a great brisket and what they call Purloo, which is kind of a cousin to Jambalaya. BOOK: “Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less” by Greg McKeown.

STANLEY CLARKE – Musician (“Bass Ball”)/Composer – MUSIC: Mohini Dey. She really can play. I like Esperanza Spalding and all that, but this girl is kicking some dudes seriously in the butt. BOOK: “History of The Bible.” TRAVEL: Switzerland. The most manicured country in the world. BEST PHILLY CHEESESTEAK: Jim’s, man, on South Street.

Mario Van Peebles

MARIO VAN PEEBLES – Actor/Producer/Director (SyFy’s “Superstition”) – TRAVEL: Guana Island, British Virgin Islands. PASTIME: Hanging out with my dad and listening to his stories. He clearly gets the joke of life! MOMENT: Squashing my kids and tickling them, including Morgana! INDULGENCE: Indulging in myself to believe that I’ve been good for the planet this year; a force for good. FAVE SAYING: There are three loves in life: Do what you love, work with people you love and try to say something you love with it.

As featured in the Los Angeles Wave and Independent, Tasty Clips is one of the leading entertainment newspaper columns on the West Coast, serving nearly one million weekly readers. To reach Bill Vaughan, send email to or via Twitter @tastyclips.

BILL VAUGHAN’S TASTY CLIPS: ‘Superstition’ is the way for Mario Van Peebles

Actor-director Mario Van Peebles is hoping to change the landscape of horror with “Superstition,” a new series premiering Oct. 20 on the SyFy network. In the high concept show, he stars as Isaac Hastings, the black funeral parlor owner whose family serves as supernatural protectors and guardians of the fictional town of La Rochelle.

“We thought this is a very exciting diverse America that we wanted to show,” he said of the series that also features Robinne Lee, Demetria McKinney, Brad James and his daughter, Morgana Van Peebles. “Part of the other thing we kicked around was this notion that, you know, what would the Obamas really be like when the cameras go off?”

Van Peeples is also guaranteeing to keep the BS meter on.

“They’re not doing stupid things,” he explained of the characters. “Sometimes in horror movies people do stuff you would never do. My character would never go back in that haunted house looking for the kitten. He’d be, like, ‘I’ll come back tomorrow.’”

For the director of “New Jack City,” “Panther” and “Posse,” filmmaking is all part of the zen. The son of indie film veteran Melvin Van Peebles (“Sweet Sweetback’s Baadasssss Song”) says his family is “kind of like the Jacksons without the talent. You know, we just get in there and we’re scrappy. And we make it happen.

“I grew up seeing my dad do a lot of this,” he added. “I learned what to do and what not to do. He has a great sense of humor and has never been bitter. I mean, this is the cat who started directing when there were no black directors. And he went to Columbia Pictures and said I want to direct movies. And they said we don’t need elevator operators.

“He said to me, ‘Son, there’s three kinds of people in the world. There’s people that watch stuff happen. There’s people that complain about what happens. And there’s people that make things happen.’

“And the Van Peebles, we get out there and make it happen. You might not like the show. You might not like the movie, but rather than just complaining about what’s on TV or what’s not on TV, get out there and put it on TV. And hopefully, if you build it, they will come.”

SyFy is apparently a believer as they have already renewed “Superstition” for a second season in advance of its debut.

Outside of prying that Jasmine Guy and comedian Bruce Bruce will guest star in future episodes, Van Peebles was mum on what to expect.

“I think I’ll have to do like our president does and just say something big is going to happen and you’ll see when,” he joked. “And Mexico is going to pay for it.”

CLIPPETTES: The GLSEN Respect Awards, showcasing those who have made a significant impact on LGBTQ youth, will honor Kerry Washington, Zendaya and Bruce Bozzi.on Oct. 20 at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel. Also that evening, George Clinton and Parliament Funkadelic are busting grooves at Union

“Girls Trip,” the year’s biggest R-rated comedy, is now available on Blu-ray, DVD and On Demand from Universal Pictures Home Entertainment with over an hour of exclusive unrated bonus material for your funny bone

Jason Derulo headlines the official Maxim Halloween Party Oct. 21 at Los Angeles Center Studios. Purple Reign’s Prince Tribute Show and sets by DJ Drew, DJCJ, Pravin Shaw and Eva Kane also will be featured

BET has pulled the plug on another season of “Being Mary Jane” but will order a 2018 two-hour movie to wrap things up. In the meantime, the show’s star Gabrielle Union will sign copies of her new book “We’re Going To Need More Wine” at 7 p.m. Oct. 23 with ESPN’s Cari Champion moderating at the Barnes & Noble at The Grove at Farmers Market

The Wallis announced a second extension of the West Coast premiere of Joe Morton as comic/activist Dick Gregory in the Off-Broadway hit “Turn Me Loose” to Nov. 19

A$AP Mob featuring A$AP Rocky, A$AP Ferg, A$AP Twelvyy, A$AP Nast and A$AP Ant with Playboi Carti, Keys! and Cozy Boys have the Shrine Expo Hall on lock Oct. 24.

TC ON TV: Oct. 20 – “The Day I Met El Chapo: The Kate Castillo Story” (Netflix): Because we just can’t get enough of the drug lord! “1922” (Netflix): And we can’t get enough Stephen King either! “The View” (ABC): Sheila E, Rep. Nancy Pelosi

Oct. 21 – “George Michael: Freedom” (SHO): The Grammy award winner narrated this documentary before his untimely passing.

Oct. 22 – “Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown” (CNN): Pittsburgh “The Walking Dead” (AMC): It’s war as the eighth season premieres. “Unsung Hollywood (TV1): “The Jeffersons” “Michel’le: Still Standing” (Lifetime): Wendy Williams hosts this interview catching up with the singer after the re-airing of her biopic.

Oct. 23 – “Scared Famous” (VH1): Eva Marcille, Tiffany Pollard and Yung Joc are among the competitors in this haunted house challenge series hosted by Redman. “The Untitled Action Bronson Show” (Viceland): The rapper/chef breaks bread with his celebrity guests in this new late-night offering.

Oct. 24 – “Finding Your Roots” (PBS): Ta-Nehisi Coates, Ava DuVernay and Janet Mock get their backstories. “Drop The Mic” (TBS): Method Man and Haley Baldwin host this celebrity rap battle contest based on one of James Corden’s popular segments of “The Late Late Show.”

TASTY QUIP: “I want to say this to every kid: you don’t have to wait for the phone call. Just know who you are, because you gotta be real about this; this [is] all business. I’ma say to all you young folks out there, you’re doing a hell of a job keeping hip-hop alive. Because everything you do is about these kids. Go back to your home. Do something in your community. Be somebody. It ain’t difficult to inspire others. You can do whatever you want to do.” – LUTHER “UNCLE LUKE” CAMPBELL during the 2017 BET Hip Hop Awards

As featured in the Los Angeles Wave and Independent, Tasty Clips is one of the leading entertainment newspaper columns on the West Coast, serving nearly one million weekly readers. To reach Bill Vaughan, send email to or via Twitter @tastyclips.


BILL VAUGHAN’S TASTY CLIPS: Demetria McKinney shows her talents in three projects

Demetria McKinney is having one of those streaks entertainers dream of. The singer/songwriter/actress has three projects being unveiled this weekend that showcase her many talents.

Up first is the release of “Officially Yours” on the eONe label. The album, executive-produced by McKinney, award-winning artist, producer and personality Kandi Burruss and industry powerhouse/beau Roger Bobb, has already spawned a hit single, “Easy” and the sure shot track “No No No.”

Additionally, McKinney will star in actor/director Mario Van Peebles‘ new supernatural SyFy series “Superstition,” with his daughter Morgana Van Peebles and Robinne Lee (“Til Death Do Us Part”), premiering Oct. 6.

She also portrays the late music legend Whitney Houston in TV One’s biopic “Bobbi Kristina,” starring Joy Rovaris as the only child of Houston and singer Bobby Brown, which is scheduled to premiere on the network Oct. 8 at 7 p.m.

McKinney is widely known for her role as Janine Payne on the hit TBS sitcom “Tyler Perry’s House of Payne,” which has taped more than 250 episodes and received five NAACP Image Awards for Best Sitcom, now airing on syndication on BET. She will revive the character in the new Tyler Perry show The Paynes, debuting on OWN in 2018.

With recurring parts on Bounce TV’s breakout hit “Saints & Sinners,” and BET’s “The Quad,” the beauty has quietly become one of the hardest working triple threats in the biz.

IRIE: The 40th anniversary of one of Bob Marley’s landmark albums will be celebrated with Exodus 40 Live, an all-star concert event set to take place Nov. 1 at the Orpheum Theatre. Music director Don Was will be joined by Ziggy Marley, Stephen Marley, Tom Morello, Gary Clark Jr., Jim James, Citizen Cope, Aloe Blacc, Cyril Neville and Terence Higgins, with additional artists to be announced in the coming weeks. Tickets are now on sale via, Ticketmaster locations, at (800) 745-3000, or at the Orpheum box office.

CLASSIC SPINS: The centennial of Ella Fitzgerald’s birthday has been celebrated throughout this year and is culminated with the release of “Someone To Watch Over Me,” featuring digitally remastered vocal tracks from Ella’s original Decca and Verve recordings paired with newly orchestrated and arranged performances by the London Symphony Orchestra. Among the highlights: Grammy Award-winning jazz vocalist Gregory Porter duets with Ella on the Rodgers and Hammerstein classic, “People Will Say We’re In Love” from the Broadway musical “Oklahoma;” and the beloved duets with Louis Armstrong.

On “Johnny Mathis Sings The Great New American Songbook,” the legendary vocalist tackles 11 current songs with his indelible touch. Among the songs produced by Grammy winning music greats Kenneth ‘Babyface’ Edmonds and Clive Davis, are Adele’s “Hello,” Pharrell’s “Happy,” Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah,” R. Kelly’s “I Believe I Can Fly,” Bruno Mars’ “Just The Way You Are,” and “Run To You” (featuring Kenny G), originally recorded by Whitney Houston.

INDIE WATCH: A whimsical look at marijuana culture yesterday and today is presented in Peter Spirer’s documentary “The Legend of 420,” available on VOD and iTunes and opening in theatres Oct. 6. Famed talking heads Tommy Chong, W. Earl Brown, Henry Rollins, Michael Del Barres, Melissa Etheridge and various experts provide amusing testimonials and scientific info on the herb. Did you know about the cocoa connection? You’ll never look at that confection the same again.

CLIPPETTES: Maxwell with Raphael Saddiq and Jazmine Sullivan bring the hits to the Hollywood Bowl on Oct. 6; while Jeffrey Osborne woo woo woos with Mindi Abair and The Boneshakers at the Newport Beach Hyatt Regency

Lupita Nyong’o is rumored to be joining Kristen Stewart as two of “Charlie’s Angels” in a movie reboot

Jazz at Drew is set for Oct. 7 with Earth, Wind & Fire, Sheila E, Kamasi Washington & the West Coast Get Down, Eloise Laws and others on campus. Later that evening, Raekwon headlines Panic in L.A. at the Globe and Sean Kuti & Egypt 80 are at the Novo DTLA

LisaGay Hamilton (“House of Cards”) has landed the part of Condoleezza Rice in “Backseat,” a Dick Cheney biopic

Leon Sylvers III, Dom Kennedy and Matt Martians are representing three generations of L.A. musicians at Glydezone on Oct. 10 as part of the Red Bull Music Academy Festival

Rising soul singer Phillip Brandon will headline Soulful Cabaret (with Elijah Rock) in support of his debut album, “The Story Begins” on Oct. 12 at the Colony Theatre.

TC ON TV: Oct. 6 – “The Death and Life of Marsha P. Johnson” (Netflix): This documentary looks for the truth behind the mysterious 1992 death of the black transgender activist and Stonewall veteran. “Harry” (Syn): Queen Latifah, Ledisi “The Real” (Syn): Idris Elba, guest co-host Keyshia Cole. “Broke and Famous” (Reelz): TLC “The Tonight Show” (NBC): Taraji P. Henson, Desus & Mero, Miley Cyrus.

Oct. 8 – “Startalk” (NGC): Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.

Oct. 10 – “Live with Kelly & Ryan” (ABC): Tracee Ellis Ross, Jackie Chan “2017 Hip Hop Awards” (BET): DJ Khaled will host performers T.I., Travis Scott, Gucci Mane, Lecrae, Young M.A, Dead Prez and more.

Oct. 11 – “Ellen” (Syn): Sean “Diddy” Combs, French Montana, Gina Rodriguez “Empire” (Fox): Teyonah Parris (“Survivor’s Remorse”) joins the cast in this episode featuring more flashbacks from Cookie’s jail house years. “The Story of Us” (NGC): Morgan Freeman presents more answers in this spinoff of his popular series “The Story of God.”

Oct. 12 – “The Comedy Get Down” (BET): A behind-the-scenes scripted series following tour mates George Lopez, DL Hughley, Cedric the Entertainer, Eddie Griffin and the late Charlie Murphy.

TASTY QUIP: “Praying for the cities after the fact is great but what we really need to be praying for is gun control.” – CHARLAMAGNE THA GOD on Twitter


As featured in the Los Angeles Wave and Independent, Tasty Clips is one of the leading entertainment newspaper columns on the West Coast, serving nearly one million weekly readers. To reach Bill Vaughan, send email to or via Twitter @tastyclips.