TIME Music

Nas: ‘It’s Not Cool For the U.S. to Look Like Apartheid South Africa’

The rapper says Americans—both black and white—need to know their history

Queensbridge rapper Nas celebrated the 20th anniversary of the release of his first album Illmatic this year. The debut is considered one of hip-hop’s most defining works; a quintessential piece of hip-hop history.

To commemorate the milestone, two independent filmmakers produced the documentary Nas: Time is Illmatic, a feature that highlights the gritty New York City environment within which the album was birthed.

In an interview with TIME, Nas explains why he feels it’s important to encourage black youth and ensure Americans—both black and white—know their history.

TIME Music

Hear How a Cab Driver Changed Tony Bennett’s Stage Shows

A cabbie gave Tony Bennett an idea about his live performances that he's never forgotten

Tony Bennett released his first number one single in 1951. Since then he’s released close to 60 music albums, including Duets: An American Classic (2006) which featured collaborations with Barbara Streisand, Elton John, and John Legend. That album led to Duets II (2011), which featured Lady Gaga. Now, Gaga and Bennett are going on tour, headlining jazz festivals all across America.

Bennett came to prominence just as the microphone was coming into style — but a chance remark from a taxi driver changed the way he performed live. The singer explains all in this video.

TIME Music

Tony Bennett Says Lady Gaga Has Something Other Singers Don’t

The legendary crooner on why she's the perfect jazz singer

Tony Bennett will be headlining jazz music festivals all across America next year—and his partner in crime will be Lady Gaga.

The duo released an album this past September called Cheek to Cheek, a collection of jazz standards by composers like Gershwin, Porter, and Berlin.

Gaga, whose repertoire consists of songs like “Bad Romance” and “Paparazzi,” is the epitome of this generation’s pop sound. But in the video above, legendary crooner Tony Bennett explains why she’s the perfect jazz singer.

TIME Sports

These Athletes Lost Endorsement Deals After Scandals

Nike dropping Adrian Peterson is a reminder of other athletes who lost their endorsements following scandals

Adrian Peterson is officially done with football this season. The NFL made the decision on Tuesday to suspend him after he pled no contest to charges of reckless assault following accusations that he hit his son with a switch.

Nike dropped Peterson from its endorsement roster earlier this month. You could almost call that unprecedented; Nike stood by Kobe Bryant and Tiger Woods when they had scandals of their own in the past. That’s not to say Kobe and Tiger didn’t lose support from other popular brands like McDonald’s and Gatorade, however.

Here’s a look at other athletes who lost endorsement deals following scandals.

TIME celebrities

Watch OITNB Star Lea DeLaria Out-Preach a Homophobic Preacher

"This is not Sodom and Gomorrah"

No one’s surprised that actress Lea DeLaria, who’s as outspoken as her Orange Is the New Black character Big Boo, decided to take a stand against a homophobic preacher in a New York subway car.

“This is not why America’s in trouble,” said DeLaria, a trailblazing, openly gay stand-up comic before OITNB, in response to the man’s rant against gay people. “Religious fanatics are the reason America’s in trouble… You are the reason America’s in trouble.”

The preacher didn’t seem to be fazed by DeLaria, but he was no match to DeLaria’s loud, non-stop rebuttals. “This is not Sodom and Gomorrah,” she said, speaking over him. “Even Sodom and Gomorrah is not Sodom and Gomorrah.”

When the man finally exited the train, DeLaria shook her head and said,”Thank God,” as people applauded. “And notice I thanked God,” she quipped.

TIME russia

Chechen Dissident: ‘I Survived Abduction by Vladimir Putin’s Agents’

The story of one man who says he was tortured for challenging Russia's president

On a warm morning in early August, a 68-year-old Chechen man named Said-Emin Ibragimov packed up his fishing gear and walked to his favorite spot on the west bank of the river that runs through Strasbourg, the city of his exile in eastern France. Ibragimov, who was a minister in the breakaway Chechen government in the 1990s, needed to calm his nerves, and his favorite way to relax was to watch the Ill River, a tributary of the Rhine, flow by as he waited for a fish to bite.

Ibragimov had reason to be nervous. The previous month he had accused Russian President Vladimir Putin of war crimes in a criminal complaint he had sent to the International Criminal Court (ICC) and to the Kremlin. Ibragimov had taken five years to compile evidence of what he considered crimes committed during Russia’s two wars against separatists in the Russian republic of Chechnya. During the second Chechen war, which Putin oversaw in 1999-2000, Russia bombarded the Chechen capital of Grozny and killed thousands of civilians. The U.N. later called Grozny “the most destroyed city on earth.”

Read the full story here.

TIME Holidays

See the Creepy Traditions That Spawned Halloween

Here's how Halloween happened.

All Hallow’s Eve. The Holy Evening. All Saint’s Eve. No matter what you call it, the holiday’s true origin is still shrouded in mystery. But before you don your velvet wizard’s cap and giant cat paws this Oct. 31, here’s a look at how the Celtic festival Samhain transformed into what we know today as Halloween.

Read next: Elvira, Mistress of the Dark, Is Halloween’s True Queen

TIME ebola

#TheBrief: What Are the Rights of People Quarantined for Ebola?

The term "quarantine" goes back to the Bubonic Plague epidemic. How has it evolved since then?

A tense waiting game ended this week for family and several others who had come into contact with Thomas Eric Duncan, the first patient to be diagnosed in the U.S. with Ebola and who died of the virus on Oct. 9. All received a clean bill of health after being closely monitored for signs of infection and kept in isolation for three weeks.

But while many in Dallas breathed a sigh of relief, fears sparked anew in New Jersey when an airline passenger showing signs of fever arrived from Liberia, one of the countries hit hardest by the current outbreak, and was sent to a medical center in case he might have contracted Ebola. With more people facing the possibility of detainment as a precaution, it’s important to get all the facts on what it actually means to be quarantined.

Watch this brief history on how outbreaks have been handled since the plague days, as well as a primer on what kinds of rights you have while being held and monitored for symptoms.

TIME politics

Russell Brand Explains How You Start a Revolution

"This is a revolution to make life more exciting."

Russell Brand’s new book, Revolution, begins in a bathroom stall before his now infamous interview with English journalist Jeremy Paxman. In the last moments of silence before the sit-down, he throws up a few prayers (not to mention a couple of Eminem lyrics) and plans for the best.

In the next hour, that interview (or more appropriately worded, that clash) with Paxman — wherein Brand expounded on his views about errant voting paradigms, the stifling power of oligarchies, and the exploitation of the underclass — would throw him into a political sphere no one was really expecting.

A year later, Brand is calling for a revolution.

TIME columbus day

See How Christopher Columbus Got His Own Holiday

The 15th century explorer is known for "discovering" the New World

In 1492, Columbus sailed the ocean blue, or at least, that’s what they told you in Kindergarten class.

In fact, that’s probably all you really remember about the Genoa-born explorer, Christopher Columbus — and only when Columbus Day rolls around, if you’re fortunate enough to get a day off for it (Only 23 states give their workers a paid day off to celebrate it, according to a 2013 Pew poll).

So you may be wondering how Columbus Day actually became a federal holiday, and who celebrates it. Watch the video above to find out.

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