Friday, March 02, 2018

Music Friday: Heartless Lover Sam Outlaw Sings, 'I See No Diamond Ring on Your Finger'

Welcome to Music Friday when we bring you new tunes with jewelry, gemstones or precious metals in the title or lyrics. Today, country singer Sam Outlaw takes on the persona of a heartless lover in the 2017 song, "Diamond Ring."

Featured a few weeks ago on Amazon's anti-Valentine's Day playlist, "Love Me Not," Outlaw's "slow, sad waltz" tells the story of a couple with conflicting opinions about the status of their relationship. She wants his "heart to surrender," but a long-term commitment is the furthest thing from his mind.

He sings, "You want my heart to surrender / I see no courage ending life here / I see no reason at all / I see no diamond ring on your finger / I see no diamond ring on you at all."

"'Diamond Ring' is about being a self-centered twenty-something," Outlaw told Rolling Stone magazine. "I'm no longer in my twenties, but the rest of that still applies to me pretty accurately."

The 35-year-old has been performing "Diamond Ring" on tour since 2012, but the song made its "official" debut last year as the eighth track of Outlaw's second album, Tenderheart. "Diamond Ring" got another boost when a live version of the song recorded at the 2017 Americana Music Festival in Nashville was cherry-picked in February 2018 for Amazon's "Love Me Not" playlist.

Born in Aberdeen, S.D., in 1982, Sam Morgan moved with his family to Southern California when he was 10 and borrowed his mom's maiden name, Outlaw, when he abruptly gave up a career in advertising to pursue his dreams of being a singer-songwriter. At the age of 30, he hit the road as a touring musician.

Outlaw describes his music as "SoCal country." He told Rolling Stone that he's noticed that L.A.'s appetite for Southern culture has only been growing.

"It's nice that now I can wear my Stetson to a restaurant," he told the magazine, "and not have people think I'm insane."

Please check out the video of Sam Outlaw's live performance of "Diamond Ring." The lyrics are below if you'd like to sing along...

"Diamond Ring"
Written and performed by Sam Outlaw.

You took me dancing, you got me drunk
You kissed me, oh I remember
I was a man needing a woman's touch
And that's all that I claim to be
And now you got questions, now come the tears
You want my heart to surrender
I see no courage ending life here
I see no reason at all

I see no diamond ring on your finger
I see no diamond ring on you at all

You look so pretty, you look like hell
You kissed me, oh I remember
Couple with whiskey, from a bottomless well
I must have been quite a show
Now you want answers, now comes the fear
You want me only forever
I see no wisdom in drawing death near
I see no reason at all

I see no diamond ring on your finger
I see no diamond ring on you at all
I see no diamond ring on your finger
I see no diamond ring on you at all

So can you forgive me for not putting trust
On someone who thinks I'm so special
I'm just a man needing a woman's touch
Someday you'll see me again

Credit: Screen capture via

Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Work Begins on World's Largest Diamond Mining Vessel, Confirms De Beers Group

The De Beers Group confirmed that construction has begun on the world's largest diamond mining vessel. When it reports for duty in 2021, the 577-foot technological marvel will be extracting diamonds from the ocean floor near the coast of Namibia at a depth of 400 feet.

After more than eight decades of producing a staggering 2 million carats per year, the land-based diamond operations in Namibia are nearly mined out. Fresh sources of diamonds were discovered off the coast of Namibia, so new investments by De Beers and its partner — the Republic of Namibia — have been aimed offshore. A few decades ago, it would have been unfathomable for diamond companies to pursue deep-sea mining. But breakthroughs in technology are making this type of project viable and lucrative.

The grand vessel — the sixth in De Beers' Namibian fleet — is being built in Norway by a firm called Kleven Verft at a cost of $173 million. Mission equipment, including crawler-mounted dredge technology, will cost an additional $432 million. The ship will look similar to the mv SS Nujoma (shown above and below), which was also built by Kleven Verft. Launched in the summer of 2017, the mv SS Nujoma is the world’s largest diamond sampling and exploration vessel. The $157 million ship is credited with greatly improving the company's ability to target its mining activities.

The sea-based operation is called Debmarine Namibia and the reason the group is willing to make such a massive investment in a sixth mining ship is because of the treasures waiting on the ocean floor.

According to De Beers, 95% of the diamonds pulled from the seabed near Namibia are of gem-quality. This compares to just 20% of gem-quality diamonds coming from De Beers’s top mine in Botswana. Some experts surmise that the diamonds in the ocean have endured such a pounding for so long that only the gem-quality ones could remain intact.

The new ship will employ a super-powerful vacuum that will scour the ocean floor, sucking up tons of diamond-bearing gravel each hour and bringing it to the surface. On the ship, X-ray machines and other diamond-sorting devices will separate the gems from the worthless gravel. According to The Wall Street Journal, the mining operation yields a handful of diamonds for every 180 tons of material processed.

Debmarine Namibia has licensed an area that covers 3,700 square miles. It starts about three miles offshore and extends seaward 10 to 20 miles. The diamond concession is expected to yield more than a million carats per year for the next 50 years.

Credits: Images courtesy the De Beers Group.

Monday, February 26, 2018

United Airlines Pilot Travels 2,500 Miles to Hand-Deliver Lost Bridal Jewelry to Passenger

A United Airlines pilot traveled 2,500 miles to hand-deliver a bridal set to a traveler who had lost her precious cargo while hurrying aboard a flight in New Jersey. Not only did the pilot "go the extra mile" to deliver the jewelry, but he also included a heartwarming personalized note. 

The viral story took an incredible turn when it was later revealed that the traveler was Brit Morin, the founder and CEO of Brit + Co, the lifestyle media company that boasts 130 million users.

On Twitter, Morin wrote: "I lost my wedding/engagement rings last week somewhere between New York and Jackson Hole. A @United gate agent found it, put it in a safe, and then gave it to a pilot to HAND-DELIVER it back to me in SF. I have a newfound faith in humanity and airlines. Thanks United."

Morin outlined the details of her incredible story at Brit's Blog, a popular feature at

Morin is a frequent guest on ABC's Good Morning America. While in New York shooting a segment for GMA on February 8, Morin had taken off her rings, explaining, "I always do this — it feels odd having a giant camera zoomed in on my ring when I’m working with my hands on set."

After the GMA appearance, Morin was scheduled to meet her family in Jackson Hole, Wyo., for a ski vacation. The GMA segment ran late and Morin found herself rushing to make a flight at nearby Newark International Airport.

She packed her rings in a carry-on bag and made it to the gate just in time.

But, since she had gotten there later than all the other passengers, there was no overhead storage available. She quickly transferred her rings to a small toiletry bag and jammed it inside her purse. The larger carry-on bag was tagged and sent below.

Imagine Morin's horror when she got to her final destination in Jackson Hole and realized that the engagement ring and wedding band were gone.

"Panicked, I searched all of my bags — my toiletry bag, my purse, and my suitcase — at least a dozen times, beginning to fear that the worst may have happened," she wrote. "It must have fallen out somewhere during the suitcase transfer. I must not have zipped my toiletry bag all the way. Oh, dear god, how was I going to tell my husband? (The bigger irony? We got married in Jackson Hole nearly seven years ago, and now here we were back in a town that symbolizes our eternal love and I had no physical symbol of that love on my finger.)"

Fearing that she may never see her rings again, Morin went on the United Airlines website and filed a lost-items claim.

Meanwhile, back in New Jersey, a United Airlines gate agent had found the rings on the jet bridge. She immediately put them in a safe pending the identity of the owner.

When she learned that the owner had come forward, the agent handed the rings to United Airlines pilot Captain Jim Moorey, who was happy to ferry the rings 2,500 miles to San Francisco, where Morin lives with her family.

On February 15, Moorey hand-delivered the rings to Morin, along with a personal note that read, "From day to day, I take pride in getting passengers from point A to point B safely and on time. Today, I’m happy to be able to be part of a team focused on making just one individual happy."

"I was ELATED," wrote Morin. "I expected them to shoot me over a FedEx or UPS tracking number, but instead they informed me they would be HAND-DELIVERING them back to me. I couldn’t believe it."

Credits: Ring photo, Brit Morin photo via; Aircraft photo by United Airlines.