#MeToo activist McGowan’s ex-manager commits suicide

Rose McGowan
Updated 10 February 2018
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#MeToo activist McGowan’s ex-manager commits suicide

LOS ANGELES: A veteran Hollywood executive who was Rose McGowan’s manager when the actress was allegedly raped by Harvey Weinstein has committed suicide, media reports citing her family said.
Relatives of Jill Messick, who was 50, said in a statement circulated to US media that she had battled depression for years, but had recently felt “victimized” by inaccurate reports of her role in the affair.
Messick, who worked for Addis-Wechsler — now Industry Entertainment — managed McGowan when the actress claimed she was attacked by Weinstein in a hot tub at the 1997 Sundance Film Festival.
Dozens of Hollywood women have accused the disgraced movie mogul of sexual misconduct.
McGowan is promoting an upcoming memoir and is one of the most prominent advocates in the #MeToo social media movement against sexual harassment.
She told The New York Times in October that Messick had arranged the Weinstein meeting, which began in a hotel room.
The revelation — and being further dragged into the headlines as part of an email exchange released by Weinstein — had a damaging effect on Messick’s state of mind, the family said.
“The speed of disseminating information has carried mistruths about Jill as a person, which she was unable and unwilling to challenge,” the family statement reads.
“She became collateral damage in an already horrific story.”
The family went on to accuse McGowan of making “slanderous statements against her,” which the mother-of-two chose not to rebut for fear of undermining victims of sexual assault.
“She opted not to add to the feeding frenzy, allowing her name and her reputation to be sullied despite having done nothing wrong. She never chose to be a public figure, that choice was taken away from her,” the statement said.
Messick went to Santa Barbara High School and graduated from the University of Southern California with a communications degree.
She began producing films and television shows in 1999, and also worked as an executive at Paramount’s Lorne Michaels Productions.
Her movie production credits include “She’s All That,” starring Freddie Prinze Jr, Mark Waters’ “Mean Girls,” art biopic “Frida,” with Salma Hayek, and action film “Masterminds” with Zach Galifianakis, Kristen Wiig and Owen Wilson.
McGowan’s representatives did not immediately respond to a request for comment.


Chip Wickham ushers in winds of change on the jazz scene

Updated 22 May 2018
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Chip Wickham ushers in winds of change on the jazz scene

PARIS: The hotly hyped “British jazz invasion” has been the toast of international scenesters for some months now, with breathy adjective-heavy sprawls penned on both sides of the Atlantic paying tribute to a fresh generation of musos who grew up not in the conservatoires but the clubs, channelling the grit and groove of grime into a distinctly hip, 21st century strain of freewheeling, DIY improvised music.

Now the Arab world has its own outpost in the form of Chip Wickham, a UK-born flautist, saxophonist and producer whose second album grew out of extended stints teaching in the GCC. “Shamal Wind” takes its name from the Gulf’s primal weather patterns, and there’s a distinctly meditative, Middle Eastern vibe to the title track, a slow-burning, moody vamp, peppered with percussive trills, with hints of Yusef Lateef to be found in Wickham’s wandering woodwind musings.

There’s rather less goatee-stroking to be found across the four further up-tempo cuts, which swap soul-searching for soul-jazz, soaked in the breezy bop of a vintage Blue Note release. Recorded over a hot summer in Madrid, a heady Latin pulse drives first single, “Barrio 71” — championed by the likes of Craig Charles — with Spanish multi-percussionist David el Indio steaming up a block party beat framing Wickham’s gutsy workout on baritone sax.

Having previously worked with electronic acts, including Nightmares on Wax and Jimpster, one imagines the dancefloor was a key stimulus behind Wickham’s rhythmically dense, but harmonically spare compositional approach. Phil Wilkinson’s sheer, thumped piano chords drive the relentless nod of second single “Snake Eyes,” Wickham’s raspy flute floating somewhere overhead, readymade to be skimmed off for the anticipated remix market.

In truth, Manchester-raised Wickham is both too thoughtful, and too thoughtless, to truly belong to the London-brewed jazz invasion — Shamal Wind yo-yos between meditative meandering and soulful strutting with a wilful disrespect for trend.