Category Archives: Rising Stars

Hip New Jersey sits with the state’s up-and-comers before they hit the mainstream. We’ll find out what motivates them on their journey to the top!

Boogie Woogie Babies


Tiffany Taylor is not only a mom, but a woman with big ideas and the passion to dance. She is the founder of Boogie Woogie Babies, a South Orange based organization that makes it easier for parents to bond with their children in a fun, active environment. A mom herself, Taylor quickly recognized that sharing songs with her daughter was educationally beneficial and a great way to come together.

In our interview, #HipNJ’s Lisa Marie Latino talked to Taylor about exactly what Boogie Woogie Babies has to offer. The organization puts together 45 minute classes which focus on fine motor skills, learning to sing, and a finishing dance routine.

Taylor thinks that the class is a great way to get some cardio while allowing a parent to bond with their child. Furthermore, it’s a great opportunity to socialize with other parents whose children are in the 6 month to 2 year age range.

For a chance to join up with the dance class, Boogie Woogie Babies can be found on Instagram at @boogiewoogiebabies and on Facebook at @boogiewoogiebabiesnj

Learning Self Defense with Michael Paredes

Michael Paredes is far from your average salesman that works your traditional nine to five for five days a week. He currently has a new school opening up in Washington Township at the Bethany Community Center. While you might be thinking he provides students with business seminars and other useful information within the field he works in, his classes are quite different from what you would expect. Paredes actually hosts a karate school for all sizes and ages to attend in order to learn self-defense along with the art of the unarmed combat system.

In our interview, #HipNJ’s Lisa Marie Latino talked to Paredes about his love for the practice and how it has shaped his life today. Regarding how he began practicing karate, Paredes said, “I’ve always been interested in it. I’m a small guy, and its always been something on my mind. How do you protect yourself when you’re this big? Once I learned martial arts, I realized there’s so much attitude in it.”

Paredes, who also goes by Sensei Paredes, also noted that certain breathing techniques he learned in karate have helped him relax in everyday situations.

The school is not yet competing, but Paredes’ students have recently promoted from white belt to yellow belt.

His goals moving forward involve creating multiple schools and “bring self-defense to the forefront” for anybody. Paredes said, “If you watch the news and see what’s going on…I always say to myself, ‘Boy, if that person knew some basic self-defense, they could’ve saved their life.’”

If you’re interested in learning more about Paredes and/or joining his karate class, visit or call (551)-404 -2043!

“Tip Your Cap” to Ray Digmi’s Clothing Brand


Former professional baseball player turned entrepreneur, Ray “Digmi” Navarrete, stops by the #HipNJ studio to talk to our Lisa Marie Latino about his lifestyle clothing brand, Digmi.

Originally just handing out his prototypes to his
minor league baseball friends, Ray has now been able to get his clothing line into some of the nation’s largest retailers. He even has had massive support from MLB stars and celebrities alike!

Ray, born in Teaneck, has had connections to the tri-state area all of his life, and continues to operate his business in the area. A graduate from Seton Hall University, he eventually fulfilled his lifelong dream of playing professional baseball for the New York Mets!

The Digmi brand is built around the brand’s logo, “The Guy In The Tie“, who as Ray describes, is always tipping his cap to the dreamers and hard workers out there, looking to achieve their goals and ambitions. The brand features a collection of t shirts, sweatshirts, polos, hatsouterwear and accessories, that you can find at various retailers and online at!