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Downtown’s Hidden Gems

Every day we have a choice. We can support an up and coming podcaster, try a new family-run restaurant, join a boutique gym started by a local fitness champ or we could keep giving away our money to the handful of giants who already control so much of our commerce. Our daily decisions impact the kind world we live in; if we want a world where small businesses are growing and artists and creatives are thriving then we should support them with our time, money and attention. We’re proud to highlight inspiring creatives and entrepreneurs each week in Hidden Gems series.  Check out some of downtown’s gems below.

Brando

It all started when I was 12, I was an assistant to a funeral director, I made flowers, programs, and assisted with anything that needed to be done. One of my dreams as a child was to become a funeral director. I learned a lot during the age of 12-14, by the time I was 14, I discovered an interest and talent in hair. Read more>>

Preston Horne

My journey all started with my hair, waves to be exact. I have always bought commercial hair products from the store to put in my hair. Not knowing there were ingredients used that are harmful. Since I’m a health freak, I had an epiphany one day and decided to not only eat healthy and buy healthy foods but buy healthy cosmetic products. Read more>>

Areina Plowden

My journey began way before the creation of The Vegan Foode, I’ve always been intrigued with herbs, eating life-giving foods and spiritual health since a child but never realized where my life path was leading me. My mom’s vegan diet as a child transcended into my adult life in a major way. Read more>>

Ja’ness Tate

I am a Singer/Songwriter/Guitarist. 21 years old and born and raised in Washington D.C. I first found love for guitar watching my grandfather and listening to some of his produced work. I think my music lane is Alternative Pop/R&B. Read more>>

Jasun Jabbar

I started acting at the age of 11. My first major role was in Tyler Perry’s Meet the Browns. That moment was life-changing because it showed me what was possible. Seeing myself on tv as a 12-year-old did something to me. It lit a fire in me that still is lit to this day. I began rapping for fun in middle school. Read more>>

Tarika Holland

As a child, I was always creative and different in every way. I didn’t know that what I was doing was called art. I was also misunderstood because my preferences were different from many of the people around me. As I grew up, I became more passionate about art without any sense of direction. Read more>>

Adrian Reed

I started off with only needle and thread, no sewing machine. Around February, I was just randomly sewing up holes in my leggings/jeans, and I would always see girls wearing the 2 piece Co-Ord sets but I didn’t see many people around my age sewing. It was something unique so I hopped on YouTube and start exploring. Read more>>

Teia Acker

My story began in 2013. It was a very difficult year. I lost my marriage, my father and my job- consecutively. I remember sitting in the Salvation Army awaiting assistance for a couple of utility bills and I closed my eyes and said: “God Help Me!” That he did. He gave me the idea to begin a business- one that would aid in helping others. Read more>>

Ezell Waddell II

My social and self-awareness highlighted the scarcity of positive outlets and how far out of reach they were. I grew more frustrated as time passed completely ignorant to the fact that my life is preordained. Music and I were formally introduced at roughly four years old with Fela Kuti’s sociopolitical “Sorrow Tears. Read more>>

Ian-Alijah Bruh

I received my introduction to art as a child. My mother was adamant on keeping us involved in activities outside of what was available in public schools. Illustrating was the first discipline I took up. I was heavily inspired by Japanese anime out at the time, such as DBZ, Cowboy Bebop, Gundam Wing, and Hamtaro. Read more>>

Pablo

I started it out doing music at the age of seven years of age. It was my older cousin who actually introduced me to rap because at that time in the city of New Orleans, it was the beginning of the cash money records/hot boys era, so mostly every young teenage boy in the city want it to be a rapper. Read more>>

Eravani (Josh) Townsend

Many people are familiar with my multifaceted work as a Singer/Songwriter, Engineer, & Producer. I started out producing beats in 2006 on an audio program called ‘Reasons”. My journey began in 2010 when I started out producing and engineering at major and independent studios alongside many artists, producers, & engineers. Read more>>

Mario Wright

I started out working for the Marriott back in 2013 in the events department. I was setting up the ballrooms and other venue space for events to seat anywhere from 50 to thousands of people for weddings, birthday parties, etc. This gave me the experience that I needed to start working outside of the Marriott with vendors and different event venues. Read more>>

Jennifer Tshibangu

The power to tap into my creativity was essentially the spark that birthed 4REIGN Fashion (Pronounced “Foreign”). Having an extensive background in the modeling, acting, fashion and the music industry has helped cultivate what is now my brand. Read more>>

CRICKET a.k.a. 1BAD AZZ DRUMMER, MR. SHO-OFF, BOAT

I came to Atlanta from North Carolina to start over. I go out to different areas networking asking if I can set up a plate along with the DJ. I was discovered by the founder of an organization called FEDup4u, we did an Antibully tour to 65 schools a year… because of my name, I was not allowed to say it in school but was allowed to give autographs. Read more>>

Anthony Hasan, Jr.

It all started two or three years ago when I use to model on the regular and I wanted to come up with a brand for myself as a model. I wanted to come up with something that best describes me and I eventually came up with “Reckless Gentleman” and basically just took off with it. So, on social media platforms such as Instagram and Twitter that would be my hashtag on under every picture. Read more>>

Brittani Williams

I have always been into beauty and everything that comes with it. Prime Mink Collection was launched on March 2, 2018. It started off as a hair and lash company. I recently stopped selling hair extensions back in December 2018 and decided to only sell Mink lash strips. My mink lashes sold out very fast the first three months of me opening up the site to the public. Read more>>

Mz Lady Lox 

Mz. Lady Lox welcomes you to her dynamic world of holistic hair care! As women continue exploring, enjoying, and embracing their unique expressions, they can rely on the mind, body, and spirit of Mz. Lady Lox for an authentic, evolutionary experience! Mind Not new, but true to perfecting her craft, Mz. Lady Lox has gained over 20 years of wisdom in the field! “The Queen of Naturals” solidified her thrown by earning practicing credentials at Hogan Institute of Cosmetology. Read more>>

Keila Dumas 

When I relocated to Atlanta in 2017, I had just finished up at FAMU a couple of years prior (Hey, Rattlers!) and I’m like “Dang, I got this baby, I can’t just up and move to Dubai like my friends”, and Atlanta was new to me but the familiarity of the city just made me feel so good. I started bartending and working in property management where I met other moms who were working moms, and in that time frame, I met my future co-host. Read more>>

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