11-Year-Old Jase Nelson Writes Michael Jackson Tribute For 5th Anniversary

Source: Red Dear Advocate – By Lana Michelin| All Things Michael


Eleven-year-old singer Jase Nelson is such a huge Michael Jackson fan that he wrote a tribute song for the King of Pop on the fifth anniversary of his death.

The Central Alberta youth enthuses about seeing Jackson’s This is It concert documentary film “about 12 times” and adds, “I really miss how he lit the stage and his creativity.”

We Miss You Michael was one of several tunes Jase recently recorded with Los Angeles music producer Andrew Lane, who’s worked with the Backstreet Boys and Irene Cara, as well as on recordings for Hannah Montana and the platinum-selling High School Musical.

“He made (Miley Cyrus) into Hannah Montana,” says Jase, who’s now signed to Lane’s recording label, Drew Right Music Inc.

The heavyweight producer approached Jase’s grandmother, Maggie Hewitt, to say he was interested in working with her grandson after being “bowled over” by Jase’s a cappela performance of The Kite from the musical You’re a Good Man Charlie Brown at a performing workshop in Los Angeles.

Hewitt recalls, “I wasn’t even sure if he was serious,” until Lane assured her he was.

Last week, Jase cut several singles in L. A., including We Miss You Michael (written by Jase and Hewitt and reworked by Lane), a revamp of the Sam Cooke song Cupid and Waking Up, a new tune written by Lane that will be used in a short Calgary-made film about bullying that Jase appears in as an actor.

Jase says he really enjoyed recording both the lead vocals and harmonies on the tracks, and listening to Lane’s guidance on how to deliver the emotional lyrics.

Hewitt recalls Lane was amazed at how quickly Jase could grasp new material. But it probably helped that the home-schooled Central Albertan plays piano, guitar and ukulele — Jase says if Lane told him you’re a little flat or sharp, “I could understand exactly what he was saying.”

Recording with the seasoned producer was an “amazing” experience, concludes the affable youth, whose long blond hair makes him reminiscent of the Hanson brothers of MMMBop fame.

Hewitt says Lane intends to send copies of Jase’s singles to larger recording labels, as well as to radio stations, iTunes and YouTube. Lane’s support indicates the Red Deer County-based singer now has a whole coterie of high-profile people in his corner, including his Calgary-based manager and a New York City-based talent agency.

Jase has known he’s wanted to perform since the age of five, when his grandma heard him singing along to a Justin Timberlake song and asked if he wanted to take singing lessons. His response? “Let’s move to New York. I want to be on Broadway!”

The singer, who studies with Calgary vocal coach Brian Farrell (who has worked with k.d. lang, Sarah McLachlan and Paul Brandt) confirms this is still his goal.

To try to reach it, he’s spent much of his childhood performing in various Alberta talent competitions and rodeos — including the Calgary Stampede. Hewitt says Jase also regularly sings the Canadian anthem at Blackfalds Wranglers games and some involving the Bentley Generals.

Experience has already taught him to take his knocks: For every audition or competition he lands, Jase says there have been dozens that he doesn’t. “They say you have to do 50 or 100 auditions to get one or two. It doesn’t bother me,” adds the youth, who spends a lot of time in various dance and music classes and workshops to keep honing his skills.

Hewitt believes it’s probably no more time than someone would spend playing minor hockey.

While the pitfalls that can entrap young performers, including alcohol and drugs, are scary, Hewitt believes these same problems can befall oilfield workers — or anyone else for that matter.

She stressed that she will support Jase no matter what he wants to do. “If he wants to teach voice or piano someday, it would be a success story. If he chooses to perform, then we’ll try to give him whatever tools are necessary to live his dream.”


Read more at Red Dear Advocate


Ten Of The Coolest Preschoolers On The Internet

Source: She Knows – By Deidre Key

Feeling discouraged for the next generation? We found 10 kids who started working towards goals (charitable, physical and otherwise) while they were still in preschool. Their determination will not only make you rethink your cynicism but probably put your own life choices into perspective.

Gonna Make A Change

Little Lemonade Girl

At 4 years old, Alex Scott decided she wanted to open a lemonade stand to raise money to cure cancer, a disease she was living with. 10 years after she lost her battle, kids are still having lemonade stands in her honor and donating their money to cancer charities.

Socially Conscious Activist

Another awesome 4-year-old who wanted to make a difference: Bilaal Rajan, who started the Hands for Help charity while still in preschool. Five years later, at 9 years old, Rajan became a UNICEF Ambassador. So, what are you doing with your life?

Tiny Dancers

Popping and Locking Asian Twins

Ellen recently replaced Rosie and Sophia Grace with these super cute dancing Taiwanese twins. Not only are they adorable and great with choreography, but Zony and Yony also enjoy teaching Ellen how to speak Mandarin.

4-Year-Old Michael Jackson Impersonator

So many moves. Michael Jackson was a legend, right? If this shorty keeps practicing, he’ll be on his way to Vegas to party with the Elvis impersonators.

Remarkably Small Musicians

The 3-year-old Violinist

Anyone else remember the shrieking sounds our violins made when we tried to get involved in the school orchestra? We had about 10 years on this kid and still couldn’t nail it.

A 5-year-old Blind Pianist

Shut. up. Even with subtitles, the interview with this adorable kid is seriously sweet. Then, when she finally plays! Why do we even try to succeed when there are preschoolers out there doing stuff like this?

A Set of North Korean Kids Playing Guitar

The comment on this video might be right: It’s a little creepy to see such miniature children playing with such precision. Do they ever go out and play… or is it all guitar all the time? We can’t deny the sheer talent.

Seriously Sporty Squirts

Smallest bada** in Honolua Bay

At 4 years old, Steve Roberson tackled the same waves as his dad… but on his own surfboard. His mom seemed apprehensive, but this kid was ready to rock.

PintSsized Half-Piper

As grownups, we’re still too afraid to try the half-pipe. Schaeffer McLean showed us up by mastering it when he was only 5.

4-year-old Future Winter Olympian

Bailey Duran was only 4 years old when videos of her doing snowboarding jumps appeared on YouTube. Soon enough, she was placing in national competitions and finding herself coming in first during most of them.

Feeling inspired? Your kids can be just as talented or driven with a little encouragement from their heroes. (That’s you.)

Kid’s Michael Jackson Dance Crushes Classmates At School Talent Show

Source: WTVR.com

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A high school student at Pitman High School in Turlock, California wowed the crowd during his school’s talent show with this rendition of Michael Jackson’s classic “Billie Jean.”

Needless to say, the student was crowned the winner of the show.

Skip ahead to the 1:11 mark to watch the jaw-dropping performance.


Read more: http://wtvr.com/2014/05/21/michael-jackson-talent-show-dance/

McCarthy Fifth Graders Showcase Their Talents

Source: Framingham Patch – By Susan Petroni – Pictures By Kevin Cummings


McCarthy staff and teachers created a special video for the talent show, in which the adults performed the Michael Jackson classic Beat It.


Fifth grade students entertained classmates, parents and Framingham residents with their talent Friday night at Fuller Middle School.

The annual fundraising event showcased fifth grade students singing, dancing, playing of musical instruments, performing skits and more.

McCarthy staff and teachers created a special video for the talent show, in which the adults performed the Michael Jackson classic Beat It.

There was also a flash mob to the song What Does The Fox Say.

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Read more: http://framingham.patch.com/groups/schools/p/slideshow-mccarthy-fifth-graders-showcase-their-talents

2014 Mr. Viking, Jordan Panganiban, Tell How He Taught Himself To Dance Like Michael Jackson (Photos and Video)

Source: Oregan Live – By Laura Frazier


We first photographed Jordan Panganiban during the Mr. Viking pageant in March. This is part of a series of short stories in which we revisit some people who appeared in our coverage and learn more about them

So, do you feel like a celebrity?

He shrugs, unconvinced. Maybe, at Forest Grove High School, at least.

Junior Jordan Panganiban, this year’s Mr. Viking, may not have the iconic status of the late Michael Jackson.

But he can sure move like him.

It started with last year’s Mr. Viking competition. The annual pageant fundraiser lets the school’s men show their stuff in formal and spirit wear portions, a talent show and question and answer session.

Panganiban said the talent portion was intended to be funny, and a friend suggested he do a Michael Jackson impersonation.

So he did, to hits “Billie Jean” and “Beat It,” but he didn’t take it all that seriously.

A year later, without any formal training, Panganiban busted out “Smooth Criminal” at the 2014 Mr. Viking pageant March 12, which raised about $4,500 for aCornelius child with brain cancer.

The 14 boys in the pageant were all good, but let’s just say Pangainban was the clear winner.

 Panganiban, 18, said he’s self-taught, watching YouTube videos and dancing in front of the mirror to nail down Jackson’s moves. Before the pageant he practiced in his room nearly every night for three months.

“It’s something I kinda just found, I guess,” Panganiban said. “I just feel like its something that not very many people do. There’s not very many people who can dance like the King of Pop.”

 For his performance, he dressed in a white jacket and hat, black slacks and tie.

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But the key, what made him even more convincing, was the lean.

Panganiban bought black boots from Goodwill and made them into his own version of Jackson’s “Anti-gravity Shoes”. He cut off the heals and made new ones out of steel, plastic and wood in his uncle’s shop.

They carved a U-shaped slot in the sole of the shoes, which then slide onto the hooks in the wooden board when he steps on. He added straps up his ankles to keep his muscles tight when he leans.

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Panganiban was born in Beaverton, but grew up in the Philippines before moving to Forest Grove when he was six. He remembers little of the country — just bits about cement houses, rain and mosquitoes. He said he can still understand when family speaks in native dialects.

Mr. Viking bragging rights aside, he’s humble and focused. He wouldn’t let his mom watch him rehearse. When he practices, he sometimes closes his eyes. On stage, he pulls his hat down to block out the audience.

But he’s into the reaction, still.

“I just like the audience, when they’re in awe,” he said.

For now he’s finishing high school and working at McDonald’s on the weekends. He’s also getting paid to teach some moves to a friend’s martial arts class for a Michael Jackson themed performance, and will make an appearance during the show in May.

It felt like the whole school was watching Panganiban’s performance during the Mr. Viking pageant. The audience erupted when the crown was placed on his head at the end. 

Yet, he doesn’t seem sure where entertaining will take him. 

“Maybe it’s just a fun little side hobby,” he said. 


Video: http://video-embed.oregonlive.com/services/player/bcpid1949055967001?bctid=3422530644001&bckey=AQ~~,AAAAPLpuSqE~,a1DdoZJH5WQo4iWaJj1w_CktvJfhQVVG


Read more: http://www.oregonlive.com/forest-grove/index.ssf/2014/04/jordan_panganiban_2014_mr_viki.html

Musical Child Prodigy Malachi Samedy Loves MJ, Dreams Of Playing For President Obama (Video)

Source: North Jersey – Rebecca Baker


Malachi, who got his first drum at the age of 18 months, is hoping his charity performances earn an invitation to play for President Obama. 

Malachi Samedy is a typical 9-year-old boy. He likes computer games. He collects superhero comic books. His favorite subject in school is gym. 

But as soon as he picks up a set of drumsticks, it becomes abundantly clear that the Dwight-Englewood fourth-grader has talent far beyond his years.

“To me, he plays like a man,” said jazz pianist Preston Vismala, who recently played with Malachi at the family’s home in Orange. “A lot of time when I have my back to him, it doesn’t occur to me that I’m playing with a kid.”

Malachi is a musical prodigy. He has been drumming since the age of 2 and performing since 5. He has played at benefit concerts around the New York City area, been the subject of an online documentary and was featured in the Huffington Post.

His dream, however, is to perform for President Obama. “It would be such an honor to play for such a great man,” he said.

Nasser and Marthe Salomon-Samedy are helping their only child develop his skills, enrolling him in an afterschool music program, taking him to private piano lessons and sending him to a private school with an African drumming ensemble.

But the Samedys don’t want their son to lose his childhood to his talent. Malachi still has to do chores, keep up his grades and take care of his pets.

“We’ve been so careful,” Nasser Samedy said. “We’ve said no to ‘The Queen Latifah Show,’ to ‘America’s Got Talent,’ to Steve Harvey. I’m appalled at parents who push kids to be adults. You can never get back your childhood. Let a kid be a kid.”

Malachi has fit in well at the private Dwight-Englewood School, Principal Peter Davies said. He performed with students twice his age at the opening assembly, and Davies said he is popular with his peers.

“Kids really are drawn to him,” he said. “I don’t think I’ve heard an unkind word from him or about him. He’s a very positive force. And it’s not just his music.”

His music teacher, Mary Heveran, called Malachi’s drumming “amazing” but also said he has shown musical ability beyond percussion.

“Twice a year we have a ‘Share Your Music’ program, and I was sure he was going to play the drums,” she recalled. “Instead he sang a song that he wrote. The writing was beautiful. The way he sang it was beautiful.”

While Malachi is primarily a jazz drummer, he plays classical music on the piano and listens to pop music ranging from the Beatles to Bruno Mars. He calls Michael Jackson “the greatest performer who ever lived.” If you disagree, “he’ll get into an argument with you,” his father said.

Music is in Malachi’s blood. His grandfather, Emmanuel Samedy, was a percussionist in Haiti and a club performer in New York City. Nasser Samedy became a professional bassist and played with a hip-hop group in the early 1990s, Color Me Badd, whose debut album featured the hits “I Wanna Sex You Up” and “All 4 Love.”

After leaving the group, Samedy played professionally as a guest bassist, touring with Paula Abdul and collaborating with other R&B artists, before returning to the New York area in 1995.

That year he met Haitian artist Marthe Salomon at a bus stop in New Jersey. Malachi was born in 2004, and from his earliest days he showed a propensity for drumming.

“It’s like the drums [were] always calling him,” said his mother, a preschool teacher in Newark. “The minute he could hold something in his hand, he started hitting on things. He was constantly trying to play something. He was drumming all over the house. After a while I told Nasser, ‘You have to do something.’ “

His father bought a drum pad and drumsticks for Malachi at 18 months. At age 2 Malachi had his own full drum set, complete with high-hat and cymbals.

At age 4 he was the youngest student accepted into Mark Murphy’s Music, a private music school in South Orange. Murphy said the little boy’s maturity was “striking” and that it was clear he would be able to handle music lessons from adults.

“He’s kind of like a sponge,” Murphy said. “He’s really in a special top-tier bracket.”

Malachi and his father soon were performing together at inner-city schools, in what they called the “All Things Possible” Tour. Malachi remembered his pep talk to students: “If you want to be a fireman, you can be a fireman. If you want to be a policeman, you can be a policeman. If you want to be a musician like me and my dad, you can be a musician. All things are possible.”

STAFF PHOTOS BY CARMINE GALASSO Nine-year-old Malachi Samedy jamming with his father, Nasser, at home in Orange during a session on Dec. 13.

Nine-year-old Malachi Samedy jamming with his father, Nasser, at home in Orange during a session on Dec. 13.

Word of Malachi’s talent spread, and he found himself invited to professional charity concerts. In 2011 he performed with five-Grammy-winning jazz musician Roy Wooten at bergenPAC to raise money for Haiti and at CNBC’s “Night of Hope” benefit to promote child safety across the country.

Performing in front of a crowd doesn’t faze him.

“When you go onstage enough, you end up getting used to it,” he said. “I get to express all my feelings into whatever I want to play.”

This year Malachi performed at the Urban League for Bergen County’s annual fundraising and scholarship gala in Tenafly and at a gun-violence prevention benefit in Newark. In the spring he plans to play at a fundraiser for sickle cell anemia.

The charity performances, his father said, are a way for Malachi to “give back” and, possibly, to earn a chance to play for the president.

“The foundation for that was: If you do great things, great things will come back to you,” he said.

Englewood City Councilwoman Lynne Algrant, who met Nasser Samedy when he managed a now-closed Staples store in Englewood, helped Malachi apply to Dwight-Englewood, where her husband works as the high school principal.

“He clearly loves to play and loves to perform, but he’s just as glad to be running around,” she said. “It’s a family with such wonderful values. They see his gift as something for the community.”

Vismala, who lives in Englewood and is a Grammy-winning music producer as well as a jazz pianist, said playing with the young drummer is “tremendous.”

“The experience is so beautiful,” he said. “I can throw things at him and he communicates — that’s the essence of jazz. He’s just responding to what’s going on.”

Click here to see article video with Malachi: 



12 Year Old Cam Anthony Is Young Man With A Grown-Up Voice

Source: Philly.com- By Mann Frisby

Camren Sherman

SAM COOKE and Ben E. King are not two singers you’d typically find on the playlist of a 12-year-old seventh-grader. Cam Anthony is not your typical preteen.

This Philly kid, born Camren Anthony Sherman, has become an international singing sensation through the power of YouTube and video shares, with more than 500,000 views and counting.

In the last two months, he has jetted across the country with his parents, Melissa and Lamar, courting record-deal offers from industry legends such as Dr. Dre and Russell Simmons. A couple of weekends ago, after hearing him singing his heart out on the Internet, a concert promoter invited him to open for Kem, Ron Isley and Patti LaBelle at Constitution Hall, in Washington D.C.

“It was awesome that I got to sing there,” he said. “I saw Patti LaBelle backstage. She noticed me and came up to me and gave me a hug and said, ‘You’re a good singer.’ “

While Cam stands just an inch short of 5 feet tall, his voice has the kind of power normally reserved for vocalists twice his age. His delivery is captivating – but not in the auto-tuned, over-the-top fashion that has become the norm for many of today’s artists.

Camren’s voice is beautifully raw and real. And mature, bringing to mind Jackson 5-era Michael Jackson. He also has a mature attitude – confident, yet humble – about what the Internet is doing to nurture his career. “This experience has been amazing for me, because I never thought that I would blow up this fast,” he said. “I am really excited about this blessing.”

Although his parents had posted other YouTube videos of their boy singing, the serious buzz for Cam Anthony began after he covered Bruno Mars’ “When I Was Your Man” in June.

“When we put the Bruno Mars video up, I asked everyone to share it and they did,” Melissa Sherman recalled. It has gotten more than 20,000 hits, including one that set some wheels in motion.

“Someone sent me the link on a Saturday and on that following Monday, we flew up to Philly to sit down with his parents,” said Ramone Cowert, of The Koncept Administration, a Florida-based music-management company. “We came to an agreement, and by the following Thursday, he was in Miami recording. Within 10 days of that he was singing for L.A. Reid, at Epic Records.”

Last month, his take on the Grammy-nominated Lorde hit “Royals” was uploaded and the phone started ringing. Since then, Cam Anthony, his parents and Cowert have attended more meetings regarding his future as a recording artist.

While pursuing his dream to become “as big as Michael Jackson,” the seventh-grader has still kept up straight A’s at Tacony Academy Charter School, in Northeast Philadelphia.

“I really love school because of the socialization and togetherness with my friends,” he said. “My favorite subject is math, because it just comes naturally to me.”

So, between the homework, travel and time just being a kid, how does this young man learn and process the lyrics and emotions of material that was written decades before he was born?

“Usually it takes a day or two for me to learn a new song,” he said. “But if I really like it, and I really put my mind to it, I can learn it in as little as four hours. I like the soul behind ‘Stand By Me,’ and I really enjoy singing it.”

Another classic that he tackles head-on in his YouTube collection is the G.C. Cameron classic “It’s So Hard to Say Goodbye to Yesterday,” from the 1975 film “Cooley High.”

“I really don’t know much about ‘Cooley High,’ but I love the harmonies of Boyz II Men,” Cam said. “They put so much soul into their songs.”

Aja Graydon Dantzler, of Kindred the Family Soul, first saw Cam Anthony’s performance when someone forwarded her his “Royals” video.

“He certainly has a chance in this business,” Dantzler said. “He has a very mature voice, and he reminds me a lot of [Philly singer] Jazmine Sullivan in that regard. He is very polished and marketable, and certainly has all the potential in the world to me.”

Only time will tell if this Philadelphia youngster will join the ranks of such male vocalists as Teddy Pendergrass, Musiq Soulchild and Boyz II Men, who have achieved great success out of this city. In the meantime, he is enjoying the moment and the connections he’s making around the world online.

“One lady told me on Facebook that her baby can’t go to sleep without listening to my music, and that warmed my heart,” Cam Anthony said. “I’m thankful to my fans who are men, women and children. I would just like for them to know that everything is possible and to keep striving toward their dreams.”