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Jeffrey Osborne reinvents himself after 30 years of R&B music

Jeffrey Osborne by Jeff Fasano

Harlem Arts Alliance Presents: On the “A” w/Souleo

It’s taken singer-songwriter, Jeffrey Osborne 30 years to finally release the album he’s always wanted to record, ever since impacting the 1980’s R&B charts. With A Time for Love, Osborne reunites with producer George Duke for a set of covers featuring jazz and pop standards.

“When I was actually hot and selling records they [record labels] only wanted original material,” he says. “So I had to wait for a point where my career slowed down to do what I want to do. I feel more comfortable singing this than what made me popular and it’s my favorite record I’ve ever done.”

While Osborne may no longer consider himself a “hot” music artist, he is fully embracing a new chapter of his career. It is a time marked by wisdom and proven longevity that finally allows him to balance career and family. “I’m at a point in my career where demand is not what it used to be and I can pick and choose what I want. The older you get the more you appreciate what’s around you. So I try to spend more time with my family and it’s the best of both worlds.”

Actress Janet Hubert — the original Vivian Banks on the hit sitcom “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air” — is also embarking upon a new phase of her career after dealing with an undisclosed health issue and the passing of several loved ones.

“Many things happen as you get older. I have been dealing with quite a few things like health issues and deaths that have taken place including my mom, dad, two brothers, my horse and my dear musical director,” she says. “I was gonna give up.”

Yet Hubert has done exactly the opposite of relinquishing her goals in life. She is currently touring her one-woman show, From Broadway To TV: Now Back To Me, hosting town hall discussions on relevant social topics and pursuing her new dream of writing. “I found that if God takes way one thing and I’m not feeling well I can write. My imagination still works and my dream would be to produce and write for television. At 57 you can still dream.”

Envisioning a world without disease is something that international HIV/AIDS activist and humanitarian, Hydeia Broadbent holds close to her heart. Unfortunately, we are far from that point and to remind us of the continuing fight is National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day this Thursday, Feb. 7.

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