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Lillie/Nicole McCloud just wants a comeback. Will she get it?

nicoleWell, she actually did blow me and even the world away with her amazing performace of Cece Winan’s Alabaster box, but the stunning 54 year old mother of three and grandmother of 7, Lillie McLoud, is an old R&B singer and a dance floor diva. Lillie’s daughter actually gave up her mother’s identity on twitter in her reaction to her performance at the X-factor audition.




@Nevergiveup ‏@DjRayneLives……..My Mother Nicole McCloud the biggest inspiration for my creating #TNM Nonprofit #MusicFAM has just performed on #XFactor and I am in tears!

Well, how about that.

A google search on Nicole McCloud turns up a wealth of information on the singer, which explains her beautiful rendition. She was a dance floor diva in the 80′s and 90′s charting a slew of hits, and performing alongside some of the greats. She was signed to Epic records.  Via Wiki

Nicole J. McCloud (born in 1960 in Rochester, New York) is an international singer who has performed with Stevie Wonder, Michael Jackson, the group Kool & The Gang, Bruce Springsteen, Mick Jagger, Timmy Thomas and other artists. She has lived in the United States most of her life where she has recorded four albums. She now lives in Košice, Slovakia.

In the mid 2000s, Nicole moved to Košice, a small village in Slovakia, to live together with her partner, the football trainer Günter Kronsteiner. Her first Slovakian performance took place at the prestigious Košice International Jazz Festival 2006, where she unexpectedly performed with jazz legend Peter Lipa.

In 2010, Nicole provided the title song for the Slovakian version of Britain’s Got Talent, ‘?esko Slovensko má talent’.


There’s more.

Nicole first appeared on the US Billboard charts in 1985 with “Always and Forever,” which ultimately peaked at No. 66. Her breakthrough single “Don’t You Want My Love” reached Top 10 in the US, the Netherlands, Belgium and Sweden. Ten of Nicole’s singles landed the US Billboard charts. So far, her biggest hit has been the 1994 single “Runnin’ Away” which peaked at #3. In 2002, Nicole returned to the Top 10 with “Search’n” (#5). That same year she received a nomination for the International Dance Music Awards, along Craig David and Shakira.

“Don’t You Want My Love” reached number 10 on the DANCE chart in 1986. Still. That’s pretty good. It also charted in several European countries. (US R&B #66 Belgium #7 France #18 Germany #20 Netherlands #9 Sweden #8)

Lillie spoke to Yahoo Music’s Reality Rocks the day after her “X Factor” audition aired to set the record straight.

“I do want to let the public know that I am for sure not hiding who I am,” she insisted. As for why “X Factor” producers didn’t mention anything about her past singing career, she replied, “I really don’t know the answer to that. When I would ask that question, I would be told, ‘This is what’s important, this is how we want to do it.’

“I personally embrace my past, and hopefully with all the controversy, I’ll get a chance to speak out, because people — I would say ‘haters,’ is what I call them — don’t know my story. When you have children, it’s a no-brainer: You can’t go for everything you want to go for, and you let opportunities pass you by. I’m sure that had I not had children, maybe I would have reached my goal. But I’ve got three kids and seven grandkids, so I missed so many opportunities that I could have said yes to, that would have helped launch my career. ‘The X Factor,’ I mean, they know everything about my life, so they made a decision on how they wanted to put me out there. Was it a wrong decision? I don’t think so. I think they wanted to catch on the more intimate side of me, and let me do the talking as far as my career. And you know, if someone’s really interested and they search my name, they can find out anything they want to find out, anyways.”

As for that name, Lillie is in fact the name on her birth certificate, although she never billed herself as such until Simon Cowell (whom Lillie says she never met before, despite the aforementioned “Got Talent” connection) started doing so. “He just started calling me Lillie [the legal name on her documents], and I said, ‘Okay, I guess I’m Lillie, then,'” she recalls. “I didn’t intend to use my real name; the only people who know my real name are the bill collectors! But Simon went on ‘Chelsea Handler,’ and he mentioned ‘Lillie,’ and it just kind of took off from there.”

As for her earlier accomplishments in the dance world, Lillie said, “Yes, I had some success, and it was a great market to be in, but it was just not for my heart. I never could get any of the record labels to take me seriously or let me do what I wanted to do. They were always pushing me in the dance market, and although I appreciate that and I had a really good time doing that, it was never where I wanted to get to in my career. I had some records out and they charted okay, and I had my fanbase and did the little nightclubs in New York or the big cities, and that was about as far as I went. But a long time ago because of one [hit] song, ‘Don’t You Want My Love,’ it allowed me to go overseas and get more corporate on a high scale with dates in Europe and that kind of thing. So the name allowed me to keep working, here and abroad.”

Lillie quit music in 2004 and soon after permanently relocated to Europe (to Slovakia, where she lived with her boyfriend at the time), after years of frustration in the business. “I just walked away from it because it just wasn’t going well. You know, you have a record out there, and to some people it’s like, ‘Oh my God, she’s a superstar!’ But when you look in your bank account, you’re not.”

But Lillie eventually caught the performance bug again and starting gigging around Europe. “When I couldn’t make it in the recording industry, I told myself, ‘I’m going try to become one of the best live performers around,'” she recalled. And all that practice paid off when Lillie moved back to the States (she now resides in Orlando) and decided to pursue a real recording career again…by trying out for “The X Factor.”

“I was following [the show] for the last couple years. It seemed to be the one place that would really reach out and give someone like me an opportunity. It just seemed like it was the place to go. I was so happy that such a show would allow someone my age a chance to be noticed, to really branch into this career properly. My sister was pushing me, and I finally said, ‘Okay, I’ll try it; I have nothing to lose, and everything to gain.”

Lillie, who found God in recent years and auditioned for “The X Factor” singing CeCe Winans’s “Alabaster Box,” now wants to pursue a less dancey type of gospel-crossover music that she describes as “Mary Mary vs. Bruno Mars….Although I’m in the secular world singing secular music, my objective is to go into gospel, but gospel as it’s never been known before. I’m not going take off my catsuit if I feel like wearing it. I want to show the young kids that you can have a party and really get down with gospel. So the type of music I’m hearing in my head is something that hasn’t been released before. Hopefully I’ll find a producer that can get in and unravel my thoughts, and get it onto tape.”

As for the public debate regarding whether someone as seasoned as Lillie deserves another chance in a forum like “The X Factor,” Lillie points out that there are plenty of singing-show contestants with similar pasts. “There’s so many of us who have had careers before, from ‘American Idol’ to ‘The Voice’ to ‘The X Factor.’ If you search the background on every contestant, you’re going to find quite a few that have experience in this industry. But we’re here on these shows because we didn’t make it.”

Perhaps Lillie will finally “make it” after all, if “X Factor” fans give her a chance — and “X Factor” editors tell her entire story.

At the moment, the producers of X-factor are yet to react on the sudden revelations about Lillie but I think she does deserve another chance at her career, age notwithstanding.

Check out some of her songs on YouTube.


An avocado a day can keep the doctor away, researchers believe


Researchers in Mexico say avocado oil could be used to counteract the effects of diseases such as diabetes and hypertension. Avocado is already well known for its cholesterol-fighting properties but now, the scientists say it contains antioxidents that protect cells from damage caused by environmental factors like radiation of air pollution.

Mexico is the world’s largest producer of avocados. In 2010, Mexico produced 1.8 million tons of avocados, which were exported primarily to the United States, Japan, Canada and Europe, according to Mexico’s Secretariat of the Economy. Michoacan alone produces about 80 percent of the world’s avocados, and produces about 95 percent of Mexico’s avocados.

Christian Cortes Rojo a researcher with the University of Michoacan in San Nicolas Hidalgo, says there’s more to the avocado than its flavour, texture and known health benefits.

He and his team have discovered that avocado oil contains powerful antioxidants that could help counteract the effects of diseases in which mitochondrial cell functions are disrupted.

Mitochondria are the organelles within cells which generate energy for cell growth, and convert the energy from food molecules into adesonine triphoshate, which powers most cell functions including cell division. But mitochondria contain oxygen molecules that can be transformed into unstable molecules called “free radicals” after exposure to a number of environmental factors, including cigarette smoke, radiation and pollution. The free radicals can in turn, transform the neighbouring molecules that form cells into free radicals too, thereby damaging cell function.

The phenomenon is known to be associated with the aging process and with diseases such as diabetes and hypertension.

Cortes Rojo and his team experimented with yeast cells, like those used in wine and beer production, to examine avocado oil’s properties. He says yeast cells are simpler to study than other biological models but yield results than can be applied to other cells.

The team exposed the yeast cells treated with avocado oil to high concentrations of iron, which produces large numbers of free radicals. Their results showed that the avocado oil allowed the yeast cells to resist and survive the free radicals.

“The most important discovery so far is that avocado oil augments mitochondrial function of yeast cells during the reduction-oxidative period. This is important because avocado oil might be able to – in complex animals such as humans – have the same effect. In that case of illnesses in which the mitochondria is damaged, avocado oil could help organs withstand or be more resistant to oxidative stresses,” he said.

Those oxidative stresses are associated with a range of diseases. Cortes Rojo says further experiments on animal models – rats in this case – could lead to new methods of prevention using the properties of avocado oil.

“We have planned to conduct these studies, and are already conducting them, to look into diabetes and hypertension. Those are diseases in which oxidative stresses clearly exist at a mitochondrial level, and that results in damage to cell functions,” Rojo added.

Other mitochondrial diseases include Leigh’s disease, a neurometabolic disorder and Leber’s hereditary optic neuropathy, which can cause vision loss.

Avocado oil, which contain omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, as well as vitamin E, is known to contain powerful antioxidant properties which can serve to fortify blood vessels by removing cholesterol desposits, reducing the risk of blood vessel damage. The antioxidant binding also serves to strengthen vessel walls, making them better suited to sudden changes in blood pressure.

An estimated 2,000 tons of avocado oil are produced annually, of which Michoacan-based Avo Plus avocado company produces about 1,500 tons. Smaller quantities of avocado oil are also produced in Israel and South Africa.

Ana Lissete Miranda, the head researcher for Avo Plus, says that avocado consumers will benefit from knowing about the health benefits of the product.

“What’s missing is the diffusion of this information about the properties of the oil. With scientific backing, this could be beneficial to the consumer in that they will know that they are really consuming a product that benefits their health. It’s not just for salads. It can be used for cooking like any other oil,” she said.

Avocados are known as “green gold” in some parts of Michoacan because of the fortune they represent to the local economy. The price of a liter of avocado oil is approximately 100 pesos ($7.15), which is comparable to the price of olive oil.

Cortés-Rojo agrees that the findings could further enhance Mexico’s status as the world’s leading exporter of avocados. Noting the association between olive oil consumption in Mediterranean countries and the low incidences of chronic degenerative diseases there, he say he hopes that the avocado will one day become known as the “olive oil of the Americas.”

Abdulmutallab’s Parents want life sentence reviewed

English: Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab
Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, sentenced to life 




Parents of the Nigerian man who has just been sentenced to life impronment for attempting to bomb and American airline on December 25, 2009 has asked the United States justice system to review the sentence handed down to their son.


In a statement sent to press men, family of 25 year old Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab who pleaded guilty to attempted acts of terrorism said “We strongly appeal to the American Justice Department to review the life sentence,”


“We also appeal to the Federal Republic of Nigeria to… engage with the American government to ensure that a review is made to show justice in accordance with the circumstances of Umar Farouk’s case,” the statement further said.


A judge in the US state of Michigan on Thursday condemned Abdulmutallab, 25, to four consecutive life sentences for his botched attempt to blow up the Detroit-bound airliner and kill the 289 people on board.


In court, Abdulmutallab declared he was “proud to kill in the name of God” as he defended his actions, seen as a part of an Al-Qaeda plot.


US Attorney General Eric Holder hailed the verdict, calling Abdulmutallab “a remorseless terrorist who believes it is his duty to kill Americans.”


The family said they learned of the “unfortunate news” of the attempted bombings on December 26, 2009.


“It was with tremendous shock that we discovered our son, Umar Farouk, was allegedly involved,” the statement said.


“This was so because even though he had gone missing by that time and there were concerns about his situation, he was nevertheless the last person anyone who knew him would link to such actions.


“We are grateful to God that the unfortunate incident of that date did not result in any injury or death. We pray for a more peaceful world,” the statement also said.




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