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Meet Sibnavus Cheeseman, the chef bringing the chopped cheese global

It’s only right for the Executive Chef and Co-Founder of Shmackwich, a food brand all about obscenely delicious gourmet chop cheese, to be named Sibnavus Cheeseman.

Chef Sib, as he’s better known, has over a decade of culinary experience and a pretty rad origin story with his passion for food born out of early experiences that helped shape his life.

His introduction to cooking came just at the tender age of 4 years old. On a 13-acre farm in the Blue Mountains of Jamaica where he spent his early years, Chef Sib remembers watching his dad kill a goat for the spring equinox. 

This experience allowed him to appreciate and understand the intricacies of food preparation at a young age.

“That moment was when everything changed for me. The experience was so visceral and pure that I became instantly infatuated. The smells and taste were nothing like I’ve ever experienced before and in many ways, I’m still chasing that feeling.”

– Sibnavus Cheeseman

Sibnavus Cheeseman on his culinary upbringing

Photo Courtesy: @Shmackwich

Initially, Sibnavus did not consider a culinary career. Though when he was younger, he worked at restaurants out of school to support himself.

He studied and loved fashion photography. However, he was always drawn to the culinary world. Mainly due to being surrounded by people who were creative and passionate about the culinary arts.

“A lot of my friendships were formed on the floor of a restaurant or in the kitchens, and dish pits tucked away in the basement. Serving and meeting celebrities and masters of their craft was an optimum part of my person development.”

– Sibnavus Cheeseman

When Sibnavus moved back to New York, he was introduced to the NYC restaurant culture. Specifically, at Dallas BBQ, Carmine’s, Old Dante’s, Milon on St. Marks, and Wo Hop.

The fast-paced, high-energy environment shaped not just his culinary journey but his life in general. 

After a few years, Sibnavus decided to go full steam in the culinary direction. He started by learning how the hospitality industry worked by going through every level, working his way up.

He held various positions but almost always found himself in the kitchen, tapping in and learning from the professionals.

Sibnavus eventually landed his first Executive Chef position at Gran Electrica, a restaurant specializing in Puebla and Oaxacan regional cuisine.


There is no progress without collaboration.

The Shmackwich Team. Photo Courtesy @img.mos

Chef Sib’s culinary technique and philosophy are greatly influenced by his travels in Mexico and growing up in New York. He also draws inspiration from many mediums: visual arts, music, architecture, film, and life.  

He realized early on how cultures borrow from each other. Sibnavus found that collaboration enriches and diversifies people, art, and food.

This understanding led him to better integrate his Afro-Caribbean roots with his delicious creations. He also attributes the success of his brand Shmackwich to his practice of collaboration. 

When starting any project, he is reminded of a specific Confucious saying: There is no progress without collaboration. For him, it means working together is the way to move forward. 

It is Chef Sib’s belief that everyone in the industry has a common purpose, which is to bring people together through food.

In years of working in restaurants, he observed how competition hinders them from reaching that goal. Thus, he works to eliminate competition and promote collaboration in the industry.

“When starting Shmackwich, that was the principle that we hold above all. It’s time for more co-working. I believe that’s the only way to truly succeed.

– Sibnavus Cheeseman

A higher purpose

Photo courtesy: @sibwavus

Chef Sib’s passion for cuisine is also matched by his mission of food sustainability. His philosophy is zero waste, always aiming to use every ingredient to the fullest extent.

He also chooses to acquire local and domestic products sourced from farmers that have ethical practices.

“As a chef, I have the opportunity to impact my environment on a micro and macro level.” 

– Sibnavus Cheeseman

Inspire and be inspired.

Sibnavus Cheeseman credits the longevity of his culinary career and the success of Shmackwich to his philosophy of collaboration and willingness to learn new things.

Hence, Sibnavus encourages all aspiring chefs to pull inspiration from different sources.

Inspire and be inspired by others. Nothing is new: no dish, no flavor profile, no concept. Everything has been done. So let go of ownership and embrace the ideas and input of others. Everything we do is an interpretation of what was done before us.

– Sibnavus Cheeseman

Meet Tray Nova, the genre-blending artist with soul on the rise

Tray Nova is a Chicagoland native and NYC-based creative who continues to push boundaries and innovate as a musician.

Blending heavy influences from different genres of the old and new school, Tray is a student of the game who uses his lyricism to tell stories of his real-life experiences.

His latest single, ‘children of ra,’ featuring Kas celebrates Black love and culture, using the Egyptian sun god Ra as the symbol of inner light.

In an interview with Kulture Hub, we explored what makes Tray Nova so unique, how he got his start in music, and his journey to finding himself as an artist.

Tray Nova’s early influences.

Growing up in a church-going environment, Tray Nova listened to a lot of gospel music. At home, his mother played various RnB and Neo Soul singers such as Mary J. Blige, D’Angelo, Erykah Badu, Maxwell and others.

These diverse sounds sparked his interest in creating rhymes and melodies at a young age.

As he moved on to middle school and high school, he started writing rap with his cousins. He cites 50 Cent, Kanye West, Jay Z, T.I., Nas, Lupe Fiasco, and Lil Wayne as his influences at that time.

From Gospel, Neo Soul and Hip Hop, these genres shaped my early years which inspired me on my journey to explore music deeper.

– Tray Nova (2022)

Tray Nova continues to be one of the most innovative musicians working today.

Nova began his career in Chicago and has since expanded his career to Los Angeles, Honolulu, and New York City.

As an artist, he is not afraid of wearing his influences on his sleeve. He incorporates a lot of the genres he grew up with in his music, as well as taking inspiration from past eras such as the ’70s, ’90s, and ’00s.

His overall sound reflects the energy of both the old and the new school.

He’s also not afraid of taking chances and branching out to new environments. He believes the like-minded individuals he’s met have helped him grow as an artist.

Although, Tray Nova finds his unique style by sharing his personal experiences and expressing himself authentically. He constantly switches up from bravado raps to introspection and smooth melodies, balancing these elements through lyricism.

His acceptance of external influences has allowed him to continuously produce deep and insightful music.

Likewise, Nova advises other young aspiring artists to keep learning from others and adopt new influences.

Never be afraid of change because that’s the only way growth can happen.

– Tray Nova (2022)

Hitting Pause.

During a rough period, Nova decided to quit music for some years.

A single epiphany moment being back on stage in his hometown ignited his passion again. Since then, he has been on a steady journey to create and inspire others with his music.

Through talent and determination, he amassed a dedicated fanbase and has shared the stage with prominent figures within the music industry such as Chance the Rapper, Mac Miller, The Internet, Dreezy, and more.

I believe you have to go through many ups and downs to realize what you are doing is something you truly want in life.

– Tray Nova (2022)

‘Children of Ra’ explores inner light and love.

The Chicago-born artist believes that within every person is a light that can illuminate the darkness we go through in life.

In his new single “children of Ra”, Nova focuses on the light shared between two lovers as it narrates the complexities of romantic relationships and inner struggles.

While celebrating Black love and culture, the single uses the Egyptian sun god Ra as the symbol of inner light.

“children of ra” features Kas, a St. Louis native, NYC-based artist, and frequent collaborator.

In their new music video co-directed by Kas and the Emmy-award winning director ManuallFocus, which debuts today, captivating scenes were captured with an all-Black cast throughout Washington Square Park and Williamsburg Brooklyn.

Professional dancer and co-star of the video Gigi Jones adds to the visual storytelling that evokes feelings of nostalgia and appreciation for the beauty of love and life, you can watch it here now!

Watch Tray Nova’s new video for “children of ra” featuring Kas!

Nova tells his fans to expect a new project in Spring 2023, which he has been working on throughout this year. We can also expect more performances in different cities. 

In the meantime, fans can also check out other artists in Nova’s collective The 2ill Collective which consists of creatives and 2ill Entertainment is the show booking/event division.

With ‘children of ra,’ Tray Nova continues to prove that he’s one of the most innovative musicians working today.

He’s not afraid to take risks and embrace change in order to evolve as an artist. I can’t wait for what comes next from Tray Nova – and hopefully other artists too!

To learn more about Tray Nova head over to his site!

RIP Hagrid: Harry Potter actor Robbie Coltrane dies at 72

Just one day after we found that Cartoon Network is officially over, another symbol of our childhood is now gone. Actor Robbie Coltrane, who plays the beloved Hagrid in the Harry Potter films, was announced dead at 72.

Starring in 6 Harry Potter franchise films from 2001 to 2009, Coltrane truly embodied his character of Hagrid.

He was known as a gentle, caring man on and off the set and was loved by his fans on co-stars alike. In a behind-the-scenes interview, while filming his final Harry Potter film Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince, he said,

“The legacy of the movies is … that my children’s generation will show them to their children. So you could be watching it in 50 years’ time, easy. I’ll not be here, sadly, but… Hagrid will, yes”

– Robbie Coltrane, 2009

Who was the man behind Hagrid?

The Scottish-born actor had an incredible 44-year career in TV and film including a role in James Bond Golden Eye (1995).

In 2006 he was named an Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (OBE) by Queen Elizabeth herself, for his contributions to the genre of drama.

Tributes have been pouring in and you can really see the impact he’s had on an entire generation.

Robbie Coltrane will be a part of many childhoods to come

According to NBC News, representatives of Coltrane from William Morris Endeavor said that he had been ill and wasn’t active recently. His agent Belinda Wright said,

“For me personally I shall remember him as an abidingly loyal client. As well as being a wonderful actor, he was forensically intelligent, brilliantly witty and after 40 years of being proud to be called his agent, I shall miss him.”

– Agent Belinda Wright

His larger-than-life character will be missed but appreciated forever. Danielle Radcliffe’s character Harry Potter said it best: “There is no Hogwarts with you, Hagrid!

Warner Bros.

Blink 182 reunites and announces 2023 world tour with wild commercial

Blink 182 made the epic announcement on YouTube of their upcoming reunion tour by releasing a wild commercial to get their fan’s attention, and trust me they did.

Titled “WE ARE COMING! to a city near you!” just watch the video below to see that they still haven’t lost their comedic touch.

Of course, they are no strangers to being raunchy. After all, they were all but ass naked in one of their first major music videos for “All The Small Things.”

Blink also announced that they will be releasing a new album and it’s safe the say washed people from the 90s are getting their tickets now.

The band has been a little embattled in recent years as bandmate Tom Delonge has been estranged from both Travis Barker and Mark Hoppus, but now it seems that everything is all good.

In recent interviews with Joe Rogan and Steve-O, Tom has seemed a little out of sorts speaking on conspiracies making many people question his mental state.

Just last year frontman Mark Hoppus was dealing with a public battle with cancer and is now in remission and cancer free. And maybe Mark going through that had something to do with the reunion.

In an interview with People, Hoppus says that they all reunited before starting his chemotherapy. He said,

“It was the first time that all three of us were in the same room in, like, five years. It’s actually better than it used to be. There was no agenda. There were no lingering grudges. It felt very back to what it should be: three friends sitting in a room.… Everybody’s in a really great place right now.”

Travis Barker on the other hand has been mostly in the spotlight for his hip-hop collabs, touring with MGK, and of course, marrying a Kardashian.

It’s going to be awesome to see these guys together again and while Mark and Travis have reunited in the past for Blink 182, it just wasn’t the same without Tom.

White Lives Matter

Kanye just made White Lives Matter shirts and Twitter is in chaos

By now, you’ve probably seen the photo of Kanye West and Candace Owens at his latest Yeezy Szn 9 show in Paris rocking the Kanye White Lives Matter merch.

At this point, Ye has to know what he’s doing right? At the very least we can say that he knows how to pull a reaction out of just about anyone.

Of course, the Black Lives Matter movement over recent years has sparked endless controversy.

The argument from conservative side argues that “All Lives Matter,” or “White Lives Matter,” when they are entirely missing the point.

Whether you appreciate it or not, Kanye is going to Kanye.

Of course, he gave a big speech to the attendees at the event which included Doja Cat, Naomi Campbell, and his ex-girlfriend Irina Shayk.

It’s safe to say that anything else he showed during the show got overshadowed by this purely marketing moment. According to NY Post, Ye fashion went on a rant explaining his actions to the haters saying,

“I am Ye, and everyone here knows that I am the leader. “You can’t manage me.”

– Ye

It’s safe to say that everybody has their fair share of opinions on both sides. From the left, right, and in between here are some of the rumblings on Twitter:

Jaden Smith has been one of the most vocal so far

And you know Boosie ain’t going for it

This was pretty much the general reaction of the public

https://twitter.com/aliteralchair/status/1576995512598769664

Is White Lives Matter Kanye just a walking contradiction at this point?

The cycle just continues with this one

It’s getting scary out there

There are always 2 sides to the story I guess

Damn…

Realistically…

Van Lathan who famously stepped up to Kanye in the past had this to say:

But at the end of the day, it’s all about perspective

How Naomi Osaka’s road to business mogul is opening doors for minorities

Tennis superstar Naomi Osaka is not only championing women of color on the court but also in the board room with multiple business ventures. And she’s just getting started.

This includes launching a new media company with LeBron James and her popular skincare line KINLÒ which she started from the ground up.

Historic wins from the 24-year-old American, Haitian, and Japanese tennis superstar brought cultural representation in sports to a whole new level.

Naomi recently lost to Zhang Shuai in Cincinnati back-to-back open match and failed to proceed to the next round. This heartbreaking loss for Osaka and her fans has not fazed a single fan of the cultural icon.

Birth of her grand slam tennis career

Born in Japan to a Japanese mother and a father who’s of Haitian-American descent, Naomi is no stranger to the struggles of a mixed-race child.

Documented in the Netflix docu-series titled “Naomi Osaka” is her journey to finding her voice, building a name in tennis, her mental health, and contributing to the changes in post-match conferences.

At just 16, Osaka made her mark in Tennis during her WTA Tour debut back in the 2014 Stanford Classic, when she defeated former US Open champion Samantha Stosur.

At 24 years old, Osaka is the 20th highest paid athlete according to Sportico with a net worth of $53.2 million.

What with her own skincare line and major deals with big brands such as Nissan, Tag Heuer, and Louis Vuitton, Naomi’s all set to continuously dominate more than her beloved sports.


Acing outside the court

True to her role as a cultural icon, Naomi Osaka ventured to break old myths and stigmas about skincare by launching her own skincare line catered to melanated skin just like hers, KINLÒ.

Debunking skin myths that are harmful to melatonin-rick skins, KINLÒ ensures their brand and their products go beyond the promise of healthy glowing skin.

Growing an inclusive and informed community is only just one of Osaka’s many accomplishments.


Sharing the glow with student-athletes

Naomi Osaka recently signed 5 student-athletes with their #GlowOutside campaign.

These five student-athletes are Deja Kelly (UNC women’s basketball), Reilyn Turner (UCLA women’s soccer), Robert Dillingham (Kentucky men’s basketball), Xolani Hodel (Stanford women’s beach volleyball), and Ziyah Leigh Holman (Michigan women’s track and field).

“I’m so excited to partner with these amazing student-athletes to help spread awareness for our Glow Outside campaign. As young, influential voices in the space, they are the perfect fit to help champion such an important initiative and as a brand, we couldn’t be prouder to empower and support NCAA athletes.”

Naomi Osaka, Forbes

These five student-athletes are the perfect brand ambassadors for Osaka’s KINLÒ suncare line as they prove to their communities the benefits of using sun protection during their sports seasons and year-round day-to-day activities.


Media company to cryptocurrencies

Naomi also recently launched her own media company in partnership with Lebron James through The SpringHill company.

With the goal of providing media platforms to people of color (POC) student-athletes and increasing their media representation. Osaka also launched Evolve, an athlete representation agency.

“There has been an explosion of creators of color finally being equipped with resources and a huge platform. In the streaming age, content has a more global perspective. You can see this in the popularity of television from Asia, Europe and Latin America that the unique can also be universal. My story is a testament to that as well.”

Naomi Osaka, CNBC

An unstoppable future for Naomi

Going beyond medals and trophies, Naomi Osaka has shown the world how inspiring stories are built and how a huge platform as big as hers can be used to do great things for others with their own stories to tell.

Naomi Osaka may have captivated the world with her beast tennis skills, but she is conquering it one community, one company, and one mission at a time. From women’s tennis, crypto, Evolve, and, for now at least, KINLÒ, there is no stopping Naomi Osaka from collecting victories.

It’s no longer just about representation for Naomi Osaka. It is now amplifying the many voices of minorities just like herself.

Who is Valkyrae? The gaming queen making the industry safer for women

Gaming has dominated a huge chunk of social media and of the internet world, and Valkyrae, the gaming queen, is just one of the names that most gamers would know.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZuHQMUujoH4

Gaming Queen Valkyrae’s title is not only backed up by her influence and social media engagement but by actual numbers. In 2021, Valkyrae was the most watched streamer with 12.2 Million hours watched in Youtube Live Gaming, double of Pokemane’s hours watched on Twitch.


Before Valkyrae

Valkyrae, or Rachell Hofstetter off-screen, is of mixed descent. She is a Filipino-German who grew up in Washington. She now lives with her mom as her dad passed away last 2017 due to cancer.

She studied at a community college and worked at GameStop after. Sharing her gaming hobby at first on Instagram, Valkyrae made a switch to Twitch.

This was a huge risk for her as Valkyrae shares that she only had 3000-4000 viewers when she first started.

Valkyrae’s broken family lead her to an early exposure to video games to cope and escape her reality.

Sharing the story of her father’s death and her relief at his freedom from the pain he’d endured due to treatments needed to cure his cancer, Valkyrae realizes that online streaming became a platform for her to help other people heal from their own journeys.

“Because of the stuff I’ve been through in my life, I openly talk about it on stream. And I think me being open about this kind of stuff helps a lot of people that are watching. This is going to happen to everyone. I do think sharing the way that I view things helps people see things in a more positive light as well.”

Valkyrae, YOUTUBE-Anthony Padilla

Why game streaming dominates your feed

Connection with fellow video gamers is one of the many benefits of playing video games since the industry was started.

Streaming has made it possible for millions of gamers to interact, play, watch, and even connect with fellow gamers, most especially their gamer idols.

Valkyrae’s streaming success started out with her fans from Instagram convincing her to try streaming on Twitch. Her very own community of fans have grown since.


Women in the gaming industry

Among her millions of viewers, 45% are women which is an insane, in a great way, for Valkyrae.

I want to be a role model to them and inspire them and let them know that gaming is literally just gaming and it’s not a big deal. And that it shouldn’t be gatekept because of who a person is.

Valkyrae, 100 Thieves

Valkyrae shares her regret of not streaming in Youtube sooner than she did. Her female audience apparently increased once she made the switch to Youtube; a fact she was most excited about.

Despite women gamers dominating the top mosts lists, the gaming world isn’t entirely a friendly and safe space for women gamers and gamers from other minorities.

Reports of women gamers being harassed on platforms such as Twitch and other streaming platforms have only been increasing.

With male counterparts mass reporting their content and getting them banned or even questioning their intention for streaming when none of very few of these specific cases and doubts happen to male streamers.

Sadly, despite the countless efforts of women on various platforms, slut shaming still occurs in the digital world.

Women streamers have also shared about getting slut shamed for their costumes or being praised for being modest while male fans or viewers shame other women streamers for their “revealing” costumes.


On overcoming women’s obstacles in the industry

“No matter what you do to cover up, it never ends. There’s always going to be trolls, judging based on your looks, just saying sexist things because I’m a girl and they think it’s funny.”

Valkyrae, Business Insider

Valkyrae isn’t immune to these harassments as well. Valkyrae shared how she received sexist and racist remarks from trolls, one harassing her with such slurs for weeks using 30 Twitch accounts.

Appreciating her fans and the influence she has in the streaming industry, Valkyrae tries as much to collaborate with women gamers and create content her young girl viewers would enjoy.

“I get thousands of emails and messages from people who say I’m helping people with their depression and anxiety, just by playing Fortnite. I wouldn’t do it for as long as I have, if I didn’t realize what an impact it would have on people. I’m just very happy with it.”

Valkyrae, Business Insider

100 Thieves, music videos, and more

Co-owning 100 Thieves, and becoming the first female at that, with fellow gamers and big names such as Drake, Scooter Braun, and more, Valkyrae has lived in left the 100 Thieves content house.

“It feels like a bit of a reset moving in real life, and onto YouTube,” she continued. “I’ve been gaming my entire life, but now with the move I can focus on beauty, fitness, and as well as everything with 100 Thieves. I couldn’t be more excited.”

Valkyrae, Dexerto

Valkyrae still does collaboration with 100 Thieves. With more time and personal space within her reach, Valkyrae has accomplished more outside the streaming industry.

Valkyrae shot videos with MGK and Corpse’s “DAYWALKER!” and Bella Poarch’s “Build a B*itch”, “Inferno”, and “Dolls”.

Valkyrae has also reconnected with her Filipino heritage with the help of her mother and her fellow content creator and music artist Bella Poarch.

Just a few months ago, Valkyrae kept her fans on their toes by tweeting a teasing and cryptic tweet about a certain future project.

https://twitter.com/itsraechill/status/1509343699813154820?s=20&t=1HnyklbZcF_VZmfXXRb_LQ

You’re probably just as curious and excited as we are!

What with Valkyrae’s streams, life vlogs, and this mysterious project, her fans just crave more of the positive energy and impact Valkyrae gives to her loyal fans.

How Bella Poarch went from Filipina immigrant to major label pop star

If we’d ask you way back in 2020 if you know Bella Poarch, you’d think of Tiktok right away. Now, Bella Poarch is for Dolls and “Build a Bitch” hit singer, content creator, and Tiktok sensation.


Bella Poarch and her traumatic childhood

Born in the Philippines in 1997, Bella Poarch was raised by her grandmother until age 3. She was later adopted by a bi-racial couple and was raised living on a farm.

At 13 years old, she immigrated to the United States with her adoptive family, leaving behind two older adoptive sisters. Little did she know how her life would completely change. Migrating to the US might seem like a dream but this wasn’t the case for Bella Poarch.

Bella described her childhood as a traumatic one for her and her brother. Both were forced to work on their farm in the wee hours of the day and not allowed to bathe before going to school.

She and her brother were also deprived of meals and sometimes hit whenever their father was not satisfied with the farm work they did. 


Freedom found in the NAVY

Bella’s family lived with her aunt in San Francisco. At 17, Bella finally found her freedom by joining the NAVY just like her brother. She saw the NAVY as her only escape from her abusive family.

Poarch was stationed in Japan and she fell in love instantly with Japanese culture. Her time in the Navy also allowed her to finally trust people and be surrounded by people who genuinely cared for her.

Being the smallest in her team, Bella opened up about how her NAVY experiences empowered her and taught her that nothing was impossible despite her past, unsupportive family, and small size.

“It taught me that even if you’re the smallest person, you can do whatever you want. You can get through a lot of things.”

Bella Poarch (Rolling Stone)

Bella shared how she cut off her adoptive parents but remains to be part of her brother’s life to this day.

In spite of Bella Poarch’s shy personality, her fame and work as a content creator have brought her closer to fellow Filipino-American content creators and many others.

Staying close with her fellow Tiktok content creators, friends, and her brother, her life couldn’t be more positive than ever. 


As a Tiktok sensation

Bella Poarch is no stranger to the curiosity everyone had when it came to Tiktok and the buzz it was creating across social media. She joined Tiktok in the early months of 2020 and hasn’t stopped reigning the platform ever since.

Numerous ‘toks’ such as #booktok , #pottertok , #povtok , and many more content dimensions were already dominating the platform. Bella Poarch’s content found its massive audience who craved unique content.

Her TikTok video in August 2020 of her doing Millie B’s “M to the B” became the most popular TikTok of all time, with more than 58.7 Million likes as of this posting.

You might remember some of Bella Poarch’s first videos in the same format with the zoom feature and her cutesy facial expressions dancing to the tunes.

@bellapoarch

I had to #repost because the sound didn’t match😂😌

♬ All TikTok Mashup (JVKE – Upside Down) – JVKE

Bella Poarch’s big leap to music

With the opportunities her Tiktok fame gave her, Bella pivoted this fame and young career towards her ultimate goal of becoming a singer. Telling her manager, Aryan Mahyar, about going to music, Bella and her team received laughter from record labels they talked to.

Thankfully, they were shut up by Bella Poarch’s ukulele covers of low-fi artist Shiloh Dynasty and the rest as they say is history.

Fighting against women stereotypes and female body stigma, Bella Poarch’s music doesn’t fall short of standing for girls and women who are breaking the gender role, body, and beauty expectations of society.

Whether it’s a message or snippets of her personal life, neither ever went missing from her music and official music videos.

One of her new singles, “Living Hell”, is described by Bella Poarch as her story about her real-life living hell during childhood, with the music video inspired by her experiences and her actual room back in the Philippines which had the color yellow.

Described as “dark pop” by Bella herself, her success story over a dark past is evident in her hits “Build a Bitch”, “Inferno” and now “Dolls”. Music and singing were her coping mechanism when she was young, now she’s using them to uplift other girls who look up to her. 

“Looking at Beyoncé, she sang songs to uplift other people. Now, that’s what I want to do.”

Bella Poarch, Rolling Stones

Many have been said about people who became famous from Tiktok, both the good and the bad, and Bella Poarch is no stranger to the thousands of opinions on various social media.

But you have to admit, she makes her haters regret their hate and her fans excited and full of her light in every lyric, video, Tiktok, and just any Bella Poarch content.

If you got a kick out of her previous hits, stay tuned for Bella Poarch’s EP featuring Grims is out on August 12!

Who is New York Nico? The internet’s favorite talent scout for NYC

Being the son of Steven Heller and Louise Fili, it comes as no surprise that Nico Heller, more famously known as New York Nico, inherited his parents’ artistic eye and talents.

This American documentary film director is making noise around the big apple as the city’s favorite native talent scout

But even though the apple doesn’t fall from the three, Nico’s the kind who keeps on rolling away from his tree to create his mark on the world- most especially in New York.

Nico Heller started as a music video director for new artists. Carrying his DSLR camera and editing skills, he first directed and shot low-budget rap videos. According to him, he still carries this skill set up to this day as an American documentary film director. 


How does Nico scout New York talents

Nico Heller, better known on social media as New York Nico or @newyorknico, is the kind of creator whose content goes beyond the boundaries of the social media influencers industry.

Through his content, New Yorkers and the world are able to experience New York life virtually with his authentic content starring actual New Yorkers. His posts do not contain him promoting someone or advocating for a brand or artists.

New York Nico is the bridge between New York Culture and New Yorkers. 

His scouting talents are rooted in his love for meeting people and walking around New York. From buskers to strangers he walked past in the streets of New York, talents are found and shared by Nico.

“You’re kinda free to express yourself however you want in New York.”

My biggest motivation is loving what I do and Loving New York.” 

Nico Heller, Topps

His creative process

Basing everything on what he grew up into, Nico has high respect for what his fellow New Yorkers love. That’s why when he recreates classic tokens and memorabilia he was hesitant at first to go all out and far from the original’s content and artistic details. 

Nico also learned that in capturing the nostalgic emotions of New Yorkers, hiding easter eggs is one of the easy ways to go. Adding his process of conducting research to actually walking around New York to meet the artistic and chaotic character of his city.

Growing up with artistic parents gave him the skill to see what ordinary people cannot, and its the art and talent of the weirdest and coolest strangers you meet.


His big role as New York Nico

One of the many reasons he is considered a favorite talent scout for NYC is because of his eye for the value of the city’s hidden gems.

This became more evident when the pandemic struck New York and locked its colorful people in their homes. 

Nico widened his lenses to local businesses and specialty shops around New York.

From sharing about the daily lives of the people of New York, Nico started #MOMNPOPDROP. This has become his free ad space for local businesses around the city that were on the brink of their closures.

Nico did not only want to introduce the culture of his people but also to the small stores and specialty shops New Yorkers tend to walk past pre-pandemic.

His most viral in #MOMNPOPDROP was Henry Yao’s @armynavybags which received 50,000 dollars in its GoFundMe account just a couple of days after being posted. 

This made Nico realize the potential of his platform in uniting New Yorkers to save every local business they can. Nico’s artistic eyes were able to see how these small businesses had their own specialties that contributed in their own ways to the culture he grew up into. 

“I know for a fact that once they close for good, that’s when people are gonna start crying and posting. So I really just want to get the word out so people can still support these businesses while they’re still around.”

Nico Heller, New York Live TV

In 2021, Nico partnered with the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) in New York City in a collaboration of bringing new voices and new meaning to New York City’s subway and bus announcements.

Bringing together various famous artists such as Akwafina, The Kid Mero, Eric Andre, Bob the Drag Queen, Whoopi Goldberg, and many other New Yorker icons, Nico connects New Yorkers in the most fun and iconic way possible.

“The city’s subways and buses–and the range of characters who ride them–have always been central to my work and I’m so grateful that I could help bring some of the most recognizable voices of iconic New Yorkers to the system.”

New York Nico, MTA

With scripts written by MTA, Nico, and the guest artists themselves, every New Yorker’s commuting experience becomes the epic ride each one of them deserves.


Last May Nico signed with Hollywood agency United Talent Agency (UTA). Last month, his directorial debut film also premiered worldwide at the 2022 Tribeca Film Festival.

Titled ‘Out of Order’, this chaotic film shows the irony of the existing scarcity of restrooms in the big city of New York and how a 30-year-old man, on the way to his date, tries to survive through this crisis before his date.

With little and huge doses of content, New York Nico hasn’t failed yet in touching the hearts of his fellow New Yorkers. His documentary films and social media content give the world a glimpse of the realities of New York life.

New York Nico’s stories are not about how he fell in love with New York but about why he and his fellow New Yorkers love living and being one. 

And we just can’t get enough of it.

JiDion

Who is JiDion? The 21-year-old content creator taking over YouTube

Taking over YouTube one viral video at a time is the 21-year-old JiDion from Houston, Texas. Young as he may be, his name is ringing bells worldwide.

You or your friends might not be strangers to some of JiDion’s most viral videos. From getting a haircut at an NBA game to being charged with arson at an iHop, JiDion’s subscribers just can’t get enough of his next-level pranks.

JiDion’s fans are also not oblivious to his journey as a YouTuber as he has paid his dues and was even delivering for DoorDash when he first started.

His journey to becoming one of the most prolific content creators in recent memory did not come without hard work. And it’s his authenticity for the game that separates him from the others.

The rise of JiDion

Exploring YouTube content from the age of 12, JiDion did streaming, commentary, vlogs, and other trending content.

When he was 18, his main content was his high school’s version of “So You Think You Can Dance” with the video gaining 900 views on its first day.

Viral videos may have brought him luck from time to time but it got just that, luck for a short amount of time.

JiDion admitted how he almost gave up on his YouTube channel when his subscribers didn’t move at all from 244,000 for six whole months.

It doesn’t take a YouTube expert to realize that this was never a good sign for content creators.


Pivoting his mindset

“Who gives a f*ck about getting a bunch of views and Sh** bro. Let’s just f*cking go, man. Let’s post some bangers.”

– Jidion

It is easy to be carried away by trendy content with the increasing number of social and cultural trends and new influencers on YouTube.

According to JiDion, that was something he decided to give up on instead of his entire passion for creating videos. Fun and wit come naturally with JiDion and he made sure that his next videos would show that more natural side of him.

His video where he used a walkie-talkie and an RC Car in picking up girls in public captured the amusement and interest of new subscribers.

Complimenting him on his unique content and humor, JiDion’s fans truly are in for different adventures in every video.

Now with 5.3 Million subscribers on YouTube and 3.6 Million followers on Tiktok, JiDion’s name, voice, and laughter are just getting louder and louder on everyone’s screens. 


Advice to young creators

“EVERY VIDEO I MAKE I’M THINKING ‘DAMN, I WANNA REACH NEW PEOPLE. NEW PEOPLE. NEW PEOPLE’ ”

– Jidion, 2021

It’s never the same thing for JiDion when it comes to his content. In a video where he gave advice to aspiring YouTubers, he ends his list to his fans with his mentality of reaching new people and never milking any of his previous content. 

Trolling and pranking videos may have grown up with everyone and with every social media platform, but YouTubers as creative and as passionate as JiDion only inspire more to tune in. 

For someone as high-spirited as JiDion, not even lifetime banishments from the oldest tournament namely Wimbledon doesn’t seem to faze this creator.

Pulling stunts and pranks in the most bizarre places and impacting the lives of his loyal audiences got him the attention and deal with Logan Paul’s PRIME SQUAD.

When you throw away the worrying about your views and likes count and instead give your heart out to your content, the millions on Youtube will know and surely follow you, literally and figuratively. 

And this 21-year-old YouTuber proves just that. 

Watch his 2021 prank highlights to see for yourself!