When The Stars Align: The Union of Jay Brown and André Farr
PHOTOGRAPHY BY PHARRIS PHOTOGRAPHY
The photos in this magazine represent the joy, love, and strength of a couple who recognizes their union was ordained from the beginning of time. Suite Life SoCal is honored to highlight Jay & André Farr as an example of Black Love, Black Excellence, and Black Brilliance.
When I sat down to meet with Jay Brown and André Farr virtually, I was greeted with smiles and strength from the bride and groom. I immediately recognized that I was in the presence of a couple who had become one despite their wedding being two weeks away.
I settled into my seat with great anticipation, looking forward to hearing their love story. As Brown shared how she and Farr met by chance, I listened and smiled, mirroring the joy emitted as she spoke.
"Before I met André, I was in a girl group. I realized it was not for me. I wanted to understand the back business of the entertainment industry. I went on a lunch break in the library area of the studio we were in, and I heard André talking to two young men about entrepreneurship, micro-market economy, and delayed gratification."
Brown's interests peaked, and after Farr finished, she did something uncharacteristic of herself and approached him after he was finished saying, "I heard what you were talking about with the DRE Program (Disciplined Respected Entrepreneurs Program), and if you need an assistant or an intern, I am willing because I really want to learn the business side of entertainment."
André explained that he refused the request at first; sharing his internship was challenging, and it was very laborious at the time. Brown was persistent, and eventually, Farr decided to give her a chance. "It turned out that she was the best intern and assistant I ever had, and now she's the president of all of my companies," Farr affirmed as Brown smiled in the background.
As I was listening to the two love birds, I envisioned a complicated combination lock that miraculously unlocked with each act of obedience. Brown stepped outside of her comfort zone to introduce herself and inquire about the DRE Program, which opened Farrs' heart to say “yes” to Brown's request eventually, and the rest is history.
I shared my vision with Farr and his bride; he replied, "God preordained our relationship. When you get in alignment with your assignment, you end up finding what you have always sought. It is easy when you are in alignment with God."
I grinned and agreed; Brown sat with a big smile and quietly soaked in the words of her future husband. She gleaned quiet confidence, and Farr exhibited unshakable faith.
It's easy to see how much Farr and Brown are in love once you are in their presence. I wanted to know more about what made them so confident in their love. Farr did not leave me in suspense. "We've been knowing each other for 12 years. I'm not marrying a stranger. I am marrying my best friend, for real." Just as one would expect, Jay joined in, and they both said, "For real, for real," in unison, wearing winning smiles that filled the screen.
As all conversations with Farr and I go, we went deep. I was so excited to write this article on these two because their union is an excellent example of Black Love. Historically, Black families and Black love have been under attack. In our interview, Farr shared his insight on why Black Love is still challenged.
“The dysfunction that came from generations of slavery are still found today. Emasculated men, men who are insecure and that try to get their way by force. Women who don't realize the best way to a man is by supporting him. Understanding the truth is if you want your man to be the best he can be, you have to raise your standard; you have to make him raise his. That is what a real woman does."
Farr not only shared his insight, but he offered a path to changing the trajectory. "A lot of this redefining of who we are, really cursing the generational illness of the effects of slavery is something that you have to do every single day. It's not something that you do just on Thursday and expect something to change. You have to do this every day."
Furthermore, "What we have to do as a people is show up every day consistently, every single day and then all of the sudden they'll start to learn not by what we say because it's not about what you say, it's about what you do. That's concrete. It's your actions, not your words," Farr concluded.
And just as it got a little heavy, Farr looks at me and says, "You can go ahead and tell her (Jay) the selling point for this whole article." He turns to Brown and says, "Babe, I agreed to do a (use your imagination) for the magazine. We all break out laughing as Brown fires back, "You know what, people will get to see the greatness I've been seeing for so long." And almost matter of factly, Farr says, "You have to have humor."
As our time together continued, I was humbled to be in the presence of this beautiful blissful couple. But before our time ended, I had to ask how they managed to persevere in planning a wedding during the pandemic.
"Trying to plan a wedding through a pandemic, I wouldn't recommend it at all," Brown said as she shook her head. Farr and Brown planned their wedding three times due to COVID-19. Brown shared how the latest variant, the Omicron variant caused her some concern, but when she learned it was more like a bad cold, she felt comfortable moving forward with their plans to marry on January 15, 2022.
Cool as a cucumber, Farr added, "I look at it as proceed with caution and whatever the Lord wants to happen that's what will happen. I just put all my trust in Him. I stopped putting my trust in men. Man will always let you down. Put your trust in God and relax through it. Whatever it is going to be, it's going to be great."
Standing by a man with extreme assurance in God, there was no room for a "bridezilla," but that doesn't mean that Brown can't relate to why brides can turn into bridezillas after the many ups and downs. In short, Brown and Farr found that many people are ready to take advantage of the bride because she is dealing with a myriad of emotions. As event planners and entrepreneurs, the couple was determined not to be taken advantage of by "professionals" who ask for your budget before they ask what your needs are for your wedding.
Brown found the perfect dress, a referral from Niecy Nash through their nail tech led her to a Black custom veil maker who adorned her crown. Through faith, grace, and love, the couple was assured that their nuptials would come off without a hitch under the watchful eye of a faithful God.
Wedding Day Bliss
I arrived at the Brown and Farr wedding held at the Ritz Carlton in Marina del Rey with great expectation. I didn't even ponder the tsunami warning or the clouds that hovered over the garden wedding. While there was a brief drizzle, I had spent significant time in our interview, and I knew that God was in the midst.
As I took my seat, I recognized the traditional flowers over the gazebo, the smiling expectant guest, and the calmness of everyone involved in making the wedding beautiful. Farr entered to music fit for a put-together groom preparing to spend his life with his bride while displaying his more fit and lean stature and commitment to the Farr's Best Chairman's Challenge, which challenged participants for 100 days to strive for more excellent health. His groom's men arrived with supportive struts to the altar, followed by the dazzling ring bearer.
While the men were dashing, all guests awaited the bride. The bridesmaids entered in beautiful dresses, which made a statement and alerted the guest that the lady of the day was nearby. Once the bridesmaids were in place, The adorable flower girl paved a beautiful trail of roses for the bride to follow.
The sound of a trumpet played near the top of the staircase to alert the guest and grab their attention. The guests were alerted; the bride was preparing her entrance. Every head had turned by the trumpet's call as the bride began her walk to meet her groom. As she started walking, the song "This Is Why I Love You" began.
The bride walked down the steps as everyone awaited her to approach the altar. She walked down the aisle as the guest gawked and smiled in amazement. Once the bride made it to the altar, to my surprise, I noticed that the recording artist, MAJOR., was singing the song that I thought was being played on an electronic device. As if the moment could not be more memorable, MAJOR. personalized the song with the bride and groom's names declaring their love for one another.
As the wedding began, the pastor started officiating by recognizing that the clouds represented the presence of God. As the ceremony progressed, while Rashad Brown beautifully sang, "So High," 7 doves miraculously appeared and flew high above the gazebo to confirm what the pastor shared and declared the depths and heights of the bride and groom's union. At that moment, I knew I wasn't just at a wedding but experiencing an ordained moment, and that Suite Life SoCal was a part of something extraordinary.
At last, it was time for the two friends who became lovers to exchange their vows before God, family, & friends. The groom declared, "You are my good thing created for me." while the bride proclaimed, "I love you as I love myself; you are my whole heart." As the bride and groom exchanged vows, hearts were inspired.
The pandemic may have cut the guest list, but the beauty and significance of the Farr wedding were not to be denied. Indeed, Black Brilliance was entirely on display with the love and support of many great men and women who attended and participated in the Farr wedding.
Enjoy the photos displayed, highlighting the Brown/Farr wedding and the reception.