The Twitter Guru of Montreux and The $300 million Investment – Prince to Prince!

Presenter Prince speaks on stage at the 55th annual Grammy Awards in Los Angeles Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal of Saudi Arabia through his Kingdom Holdings Company controls in my home city of Toronto two luxury hotel groups, they are the Four Seasons and Fairmont Hotels. Toronto is head office for both the luxury chains. So when Prince and now I am talking about Prince the multi-Grammy winning singer-songwriter, man of jazz, who put purple into purple said he wanted some clothes he had seen on YouTube video I had posted as an experiment with social media sent to Montreal naturally I was only too eager to transport them. My friends at Fairmont Hotel suggested I stay with them at the Fairmont Queen Elizabeth, after all I was going to be sitting at the bar and tweeting to my then thirty-four followers. The team at Fairmont hotel did not care, after all it’s not like my video had million of views but it had the most important of views which was the master of funk Prince. Herein come that old adage ‘It’s not the quantity it’s the quality’.

My friends Mark Reilly, Jeremine St-Pierre sat down at the bar, ordered wine, cheese, as I tweeted this along side Price being in Montreal. My friend Kate Good who at the time was working at the hotel at the time was watching this all unfold before her eyes. I would get them to say shout-out upload them to YouTube and tweet them right on the spot. Now we have Vine fully integrated to do that. Mark and Jeremine looked at me and said “so this is your job, drink wine, eat cheese bring clothes for Prince and just tweet it”. Prince had finished his show, my phone rang, it was his assistant calling to inform me he loved all the clothes, and wanted me to text her the telephone number of my designer friends, who went on the become designers for Prince. The outfit he is wearing in the picture above is one of the many they have designed for him at their store on Queen Street West, in Toronto called Magpie. montreux-jazz-festival-2013

I wrote a two page memo on how effectively Twitter communicated and integrated Prince the musician with that of Prince of Saudi Arabia’s hotel and a few months later a private investment of $300 million was made in Twitter. Then again if there is one thing Prince Alwaleed understands its communication. In February Kingdom Holding invested $125 million in Chinese e-commerce company 360Buy Jingdong for an undisclosed stake.

Prince is also part of the major history of Montreux (Prince the musician). He is highly regarded in this town of musical rock history. At the time of my arrival the Twitter IPO was looming, as such those who I would meet would ask me about Twitter. They understood Facebook, but they did not get what Twitter could do for them. Then again in Switzerland everyone wants to be private considering all are wealthy or hidden away from some tax authority Tweeting would be the last thing they would want to do. As I had those three words attached to me upon arrival ‘NDA’ what could I really tweet? Montreux being a village news spread that there was a a guy in town making a film on David Bowie on a iPhone, and is very excited about the Twitter IPO. It was not long that people started to pop into Lino’s cafe to have meetings and talk about Twitter. Soon I was busy explaining about ‘trends’, ‘hash-tags’ ‘recycling content with emerging trends’ (thereby keeping old content relevant and current), its like owning a film library you can show it over and over again if you create content. How you can communicate with the world and make things happen. I told them about my friend who I met over Twitter Ana Uribe and how she was united with Madonna’s guitarist Monte Pittman in Colombia and ended up in the front row of the show. Soon I was being refereed to as the ‘Guru of Twitter’. On the day of the Twitter IPO everyone had to come sit with me and buy beer, or wine, waiting for the bell in New York at NASDAQ to ring. Twitter would create 1,600 millionaires, it would provide a California State Tax Windfall of $479 Million, IRS Tax Windfall of $1.72 Billion.

It was dinner time a man with a German accent walked in. He had heard about me. I thought to my self this place would be too small a place to live in news was traveling faster than Twitter. He sat down next to me, made it very clear he was buying me wine and dinner, as he expected that I had my entire net worth invested in Twitter. We both laughed. He then asked me if I was going to tweet anything, or pictures. I put him at ease, “you are a German in Switzerland, no I am not tweeting this”.

If I walk into a coffee shop and they say they don’t have WiFi , I simply walk out, they are not worth giving money too. If I ask those in business are you on Twitter they say no, then I don’t say anything about them, no matter how good they are. If His Holiness The Pope, President of The United States, Hillary Clinton and others tweet, you think you are okay without it, remember what happened to the dinosaurs. So if you are coming to Montreux Jazz Festival 2014, you will be able to catch me teaching about the effective manner in which you can use twitter as a musician, artist, painter, or photographer.

Below is the video I posted that caught the attention of Prince.

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From Sweden With Love – Styling from Prince to 007


Josefine, sat in a cafe with her laptop open, talking on Skype.
She spoke in Swedish. How did I know? I had been to Sweden many time, had friends living there, flown to Stockholm with American Airlines, connecting through Chicago.

Chicago is where Prince began a series of Chicago concerts Sept. 24 at the United Center in support of Van Jones’ Rebuild the Dream organization.

Rebuild the Dream offers entrepreneurs tools that individuals and communities can use to create a fairer economic future for all.

As Josefine spoke into her headset, I felt I was watching a scene from the film Girl Who Played with Fire directed by Daniel Alfredson and, starring Noomi Rapace, Michael Nyqvist. So I decided to leave. As I walked out of the coffee shop, I paused, and thought. I could walk over to Magpie fashion down the street, see what they where making for Prince, or Andy Allo, as both where heading off to Australia for the Welcome 2 Australia Tour, or I could go back and, wait till she finished her Skype call. I went back in.

When Josefine had gotten off the phone I said to her “so where in Sweden are you from?”, she was stunned,  and yet pleasantly surprised. We became friends.

Josefine who is a student, mathematician, cook, astrologer, and model.

During the summer Josefine was in Sweden visiting family, and I sent her an email. I was going to be helping the Toronto International Film Festival, with their first fund-raising gala.

The gala was based on a James Bond 007 theme (as it was James Bonds 007 50th anniversary), and called ‘Night That Never Ends’.  Having been asked to be the Chair of VIP talent I wanted her to meet with the organizers to be one of the Bond girls.

When Josefine returned from Sweden, she met with the organizers, went to a fitting for the Bond girls.  Josefine was not selected to be a Bond girl.  She was selected to be the girl of Magpie fashion.

When Josefine went in for her fitting,  everyone at Magpie were busy getting outfits ready for Prince, those that he has been rocking on-stage in Chicago.

As the festival opened Josefine sitting at the Ritz Carlton Hotel in Toronto wearing Magpie, posed for a photograph with a Jarrell guitar.  The girl from Sweden, linked to Prince and Andy Allo not with a thread or fabric, but also a guitar. She had gone, from a coffee shop, to the red-carpet wearing Magpie with one-degree of separation between Prince, Andy Allo and herself.

Magic is real and dreams come true. Now let’s  rock Chicago.

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How The King of Funk – Prince! Got Fashion in Toronto !


Prince was in town in Toronto. I needed to see him live. I had never seen him perform live. Each time an opportunity came up I could not make it. I was on my bicycle, needing a desperate fix of caffeine. It was Thanksgiving weekend in the United States and everyone who I knew who could get me to the show was on holidays. I was not about to disturb anyone over Prince, Welcome2Canada, not when they are with families. I know how big Thanksgiving is in the United States, hell, one of my director friends Gurinder Chadha discovered at the Toronto International Film Festival years ago even made a film about it, Thanksgiving Weekend. I was just gonna go with the flow. An Idea, thumped into my brain as if Thor himself had hammered it in. My neural senses went on full alert. No I was not going to go to Clafouti to get my cafe first. I was going to go see two ladies, at Magpie fashion and she what they had that Prince or Andy Allo could rock on stage. I had my weapon of choice that would allow me to distribute my findings to the world. I had my iPhone. My office.

Walking into Magpie, the energy flowing through me was at new heights. I was playing what Mark Zuckerberg calls the hacking game. You are constantly evolving your plan, your path, as things emerge, you adjust, you experiment.

Cathy and Angela, partners, owners and designers of Magpie on Toronto’s Queen Street West, were busy doing what they do, designing and stitching. Both dressed in black, looked at me and Angela with her high energy greeted me with, “hello Timothy”, while Cathy calmly smiled her way of saying hello. I explained to the girls I was on a mission and I had this idea why don’t they give a shout-out to Prince, show him a few things that he or Andy Allo could wear, I am headed over to Air Canada building, and perhaps I can show it to him, (if I run into him), nevertheless I was going to YouTube it. Quickly the girls assembled a rolling rack, and I was recording the result you can watch here.

Having beamed the video onto YouTube while having my coffee, it was time to get back on the bike and negotiate the streets of Toronto, pot holes, tram tracks, taxi’s and within a matter of time I was at Air Canada Center at the security entrance. I chatted with a few security people various people came to talk to me, but no one really could help. A car pulled up. It was at this time the security told me if anyone could help me it was that man. That man was Sammy Wong.
Sammy Wong and and I talked he looked at a few emails that I had sent to some people in Los Angeles, that had come back with a respond, ‘on holidays will not be picking up emails’. I explained to Sammy, that I was not going to call anyone on the cell phone on a long weekend.
In the conversation finding out that Sammy had been a photographer on tour with the Rolling Stones, I knew the Rolling Stones, and Sammy said “what do you need”, “tickets”, I told him. Sammy took my business card, took out his iPhone, started tapping the keys on his screen, looked at me and said, “they will be at the will call window”. I was going to see my first live performance of Prince in my hometown to which I had returned from Los Angeles, knowing virtually no-one. The show, seven encores later, was out of this world.

A day later, I was again riding my bike having stopped for a coffee at another cafe. My cell phone rang, it was the girls of Magpie (correction it was Angela), “Prince’s assistant called she told us he saw your video, and wants us to send clothes to him in Montreal for the show”, “You’re screwing with me right?”, I said. Angela let me know it was for real. I jumped on my bike and raced over.

Arriving at the Magpie, (magical kingdom) as I like to call it, Angela gave me the number of Prince’s, assistant to call. Angela had already told Prince’s assistant about me, and how I know various bands. I called, and Prince’s assistant and I spoke, no this was no prank, it was real, she told me Prince saw the video, and if I could bring up some cloths to Montreal for Prince, and Andy Allo, she gave me the information where to take them, we exchanged contact information. I was going to personally transport them for Prince.

After the Montreal show, I was sitting with friends at the Fairmont Queen Elizabeth, bar drinking wine, Prince, Andy Allo, and his assistant were off to the after-party jamming session. The iPhone sitting on the bar, rang, I apologized to my friends, told them I was working. The voice on the other end was that of Prince’s assistant, “Tim, can you text me the telephone number of your designer friends, Prince loves everything, he wants to call them personally”.

This my friends is a story of magic, of going with the flow, of the hacking game of experimentation that through social media with social interaction can lead to potentially, unleashing the forces that create magic in this world.

Angela and Cathy of Magpie, ended up designing for Andy Allo, who now is out performing in Chicago her ‘Superconductor’album produced by Prince as well as the King himself, the master of funk, Prince.

These are the things that happen in life that makes it all worthwhile.

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A day from model Melina Querel to Mario Balotelli and Viva Italia

Model Melina Querel is a wealth of knowledge when it come to food and models. She herself had gone from size 0 to 00 developing an eating disorder. As food was the central conversation on a hot humid day, Melina and I sat down at Feel Good Guru to have a cold mixed vegetarian organic fresh juice and talk about her scouting for new models, in the quaint Quebec City, and the top secret project that Magpie who design for the legend of music Price are currently working on.

Soon it was time to make a move to Magpie.

Melina had her portfolio with her as she was going to be on her way to a “call-back”. It was all action at Magpie, everyone was busy creating and while Angela and Cathy the owners of Magpie fashion checked out Melina’s book in came model Joy Okafo walked to meet the ladies of Magpie and learn about the (TOP SECRET) project. Joy Okafo was her usual self the wide-eye, big smile it was all girl power and these ladies are today’s Spice Girls. But hold on, the action was not over. Soon Olga and her daughter Claudia who design shoes and have their own company Red Lovo arrived to also talk about (yes the Top Secret) project.

So what is this (Top SECRET) project? Can’t say yet but let me tell you it will be worth the wait, and you will be thrilled beyond belief. The secret is well guarded by MI5 (Oh did I just say that).

My phone rang to the tune of Snoop Dog’s ‘California’ it was Michael Patrick sitting a few blocks away at a sport’s bar waiting for the game between Italy and Germany in the Euro-Cup 2012 to start. I let Michael know “hey I have someone with me you need to meet” to which Michael asked “is she a model?” and as Melina was walking in that direction and had her book it was time to make a move on.

Mario Balotelli, Team Italia, Muller and the Germans had taken the pitch.  It was Balotelli who shifted the balance.

In the 20th minute, with the Germans catching their breath between rushes, Italy moved slowly down the left wing. Antonio Cassano turned Hummels in the corner and delivered a ball across the face of goal. An unusually powerful forward, Balotelli shoved off his marker and speared the first goal in with his head.

The German fans at the bar seemed stunned. They expected a fight. They didn’t expect to trail.

Michael Patrick took the time to chill and look at Melina’s book, while Melina sent off a few text messages oblivious to the action around her at the sport bar. It was time for Melina to make a move, we wished her luck.

The final two-thirds were bliss — especially given the drudgery of the last week’s play — a pair of teams of top ability trading blows. It wasn’t dirty or finicky or cautious. If only the German penalty that tightened the score had come earlier than added time in the second half.

Italy and Germany reminded us what this game looks like at its very best — a respectful, brutal ballet. The pair of them should be ushered through to the semis at every tournament based only on long service to the game.

Thanks to Balotelli’s brace, Italy will now face defending champions Spain in the final, seeking their first European title since 1968. Spain enter the betting favourites, but the money on them is shortening quickly.

What a day this was a perfect Italian day, about fashion, models, style and a game of football powered by the man who is peerless in front of the net when he wants to play Mario Balotelli.

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Lady Gaga ‘Don’t Eat Tweet’ but OMG!!! Her Tiramisu is Sweet!

“Just killed back to back spin classes. Eating a salad dreaming of a cheeseburger #PopSingersDontEat #IWasBornThisWay,”

the 26-year-old “Born This Way” singer posted.
Immediately the backlash started rolling in from the Twitter community, accusing the pop star of supporting eating disorders.

“I’m gonna say this about girls: The dieting wars have got to stop. Everyone just knock it off,” Gaga said at the conference held in Los Angeles and hosted by former California First Lady Maria Shriver.
The singer also has been an outspoken advocate for empowering youth who feel like outsiders, and the irony between what the singer has said in the past and her tweet was not lost on her more than 22.7 million followers in the Twitterverse.

Hey all this right after Clafouti in Toronto created The Lady Gaga Tiramisu.

So what gives? Lady Gaga should take care what she tweets as what she may have been saying is “I am so busy working out for the tour don’t have time to eat.”

Great care was taken to make The Lady Gaga Tiramisu, which is a light dessert, so it will not weigh you down if your dancing on stage if you are a “Pop Singer”.

Lady Gaga loves her Audi R8 GT and it was used to bring singer, songwriter, dancer, actor Jasmine to try the sweet dessert. She loved it and could not stop eating it. While some prefer to use a model for a shoot, it was done with Jasmine a real girl, who keeps it real, loves food and likes to eat all in keeping with Lady Gaga and the philosophy of empowering young girls.

Jasmine
Jasmine Spence in the Kitchen of Clafouti in Magpie Fashion

The action is always in the kitchen and Lady Gaga loves to eat as well, and the Lady Gaga Tiramisu made in the kitchen has Jasmine having a ball in the kitchen.




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Prince – Ready to Roll Spectacular “Welcome2Australia”

The Gold Coast of Australia was a great time for me. It was in Australia that my sponsored Indy Car Racing team of American Spirit came in first and second. So for me it will be a great time to return to Australia looking at the people and talking to them about the artist and performer who gave us magic in Canada. Prince.
After a not-so-cryptic hint yesterday, one of the greatest entertainers of our era has finally announced his return to Australia.
His name is Prince, and he is set to bring a 360 degree arena spectacular to Australia this May.

Arguably the definitive pop artist of the past three decades, Prince has steadfastly played by his own rules – continuing to release quality material through a variety of unconventional methods.

His live performance is stuff of legend, rocking through an immaculate canon of certified classics – including Purple Rain, Let’s Go Crazy, Kiss and countless more.
Prince performs at Rod Laver Arena on Monday May 14.

The best place to start the Prince tour to Australia for me, was not far form the design center for Prince on Queen Street West of Magpie. Nearby I found Mark Fosco who has a band called Rad Habits sitting with his guitar chilling. Mark told me he can do that as he has no girl-friend. I did manage to tell him that it is a good thing, leaves us time to do what we want to do, and it really is not a good idea if you are gonna be a rocker.

So here we go, from Toronto where Prince began his Welcome 2 Canada Tour with comments from Mark Fosco of the band Rad Habits, views on Prince and why everyone will be ecstatic to see his live show.



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