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NIELSEN REPORT: With 67% Growth in Business Startups and 64% of High School Grads...

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NIELSEN REPORT: With 67% Growth in Business Startups and 64% of High School Grads Going Straight to College, "Black Girl Magic" and Brand Loyalty is Propelling Total Black Buying Power Toward $1.5 Trillion by 2021[caption id="attachment_182834" align="alignnone" width="309"]rfocus.org Nielsens seventh annual report in its Diverse Intelligence Series, African-American Women: Our Science, Her Magic, paints a portrait of Black women as trendsetters, brand loyalists and early adopters whose preferences and brand affinities are resonating across the U.S. mainstream, driving total Black spending power toward a record $1.5 trillion by 2021. (PRNewsfoto/Nielsen Holdings plc)[/caption]Nielsen’s seventh annual report in its Diverse Intelligence Series, African-American Women: Our Science, Her Magic, paints a portrait of Black women as trendsetters, brand loyalists and early adopters whose preferences and brand affinities are resonating across the U.S. mainstream, driving total Black spending power toward a record $1.5 trillion by 2021. (PRNewsfoto/Nielsen Holdings plc) Nielsen’s seventh annual report in its Diverse Intelligence Series, African-American Women: Our Science, Her Magic, paints a portrait of Black women as trendsetters, brand loyalists and early adopters whose preferences and brand affinities are ...WASHINGTON, Sept. 21, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- African-American women's consumer preferences and brand affinities are resonating across the U.S. mainstream, driving total Black spending power toward a record $1.5 trillion by 2021, according to African-American Women: Our Science, Her Magic, a Nielsen report released today. Self-made and self-reliant, the number of businesses majority-owned by Black women grew 67% between 2007 and 2012, more than all women combined. The latest U.S. Census figures show African-American women have majority ownership in more than 1.5 million businesses with over $42 billion in sales.In Nielsen's new Diverse Intelligence Series report, the global performance management company paints a portrait of Black women as trendsetters, brand loyalists and early adopters who care about projecting a positive self-image. They are playing an increasingly vital role in how all women see themselves and influencing mainstream culture across a number of areas, including fashion, beauty, television and music. Young, independent and 24.3 million strong, Black women comprise 14% of all U.S. women and 52% of all African-Americans. Relatively young with an average age of 35.1 years (versus 42.8 for non-Hispanic White women and 39.4 for all women), they have enjoyed steady growth in population, incomes and educational attainment. Sixty-four percent enroll in college right out of high school and 23% over age 25 have a bachelor's degree or higher (up from 18% in 2005)."Black women have strong life-affirming values that spill over into everything they do. The celebration of their power and beauty is reflected in what they buy, watch and listen to, and people outside their communities find it inspiring," says Cheryl Grace, Senior Vice President of U.S. Strategic Community Alliances and Consumer Engagement, Nielsen. "Understanding how Black women's values affect their buying decisions has long been a marketing necessity. Now, marketers must also recognize the intercultural influence of Black women on the general market as an increasingly vital part of how all women see themselves, their families and the rest of the world

Ivy “Unleashed” Elevated to Afternoon Drive Host on Power 96 Miami

Digital and Radio Facts: CBS RADIO Miami’s Power 96 (WPOW-FM) has elevated Ivy “Unleashed” to Afternoon Drive Host, Monday-Friday, 2 PM-7 PM, up from nights....

Ivy "Unleashed" Elevated to Afternoon Drive Host on Power 96 Miami

Radio Facts: CBS RADIO Miami’s Power 96 (WPOW-FM) has elevated Ivy “Unleashed” to Afternoon Drive Host, Monday-Friday, 2 PM-7 PM, up from nights. The announcement was...

Vanessa Williams To Launch New Campaign With ‘Clear Eyes’

Digital and Radio Facts: Clear Eyes® (www.cleareyes.com), the #1 selling brand of eye drops, launches My Shining Moment, its first-ever brand equity and...

Vanessa Williams To Launch New Campaign With 'Clear Eyes'

Radio Facts: Clear Eyes® (www.cleareyes.com), the #1 selling brand of eye drops, launches My Shining Moment, its first-ever brand equity and integrated marketing campaign,...

Godfather of West Coast Rap Alonzo Williams Emerges Defiant In HBO Documentary and New...

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The acronym N.W.A. are three explosive letters loaded with controversy within the unpredictable genre of hip hop music. But for one man, those letters mean only one thing – Not Without Alonzo. Alonzo "Lonzo" Williams is widely acknowledged as the definitive "Godfather of West Coast Hip Hop" and considering his historical stance pioneering the birth of west coast hip hop music, it is clearly understood why.

Williams can purposely take credit for brokering not only some of the biggest connections in hip hop music but also for discovering some its biggest names, including Dr. Dre, Ice Cube and Eazy E. With the July debut of the highly-anticipated hbo series, "The Defiant Ones," about Jimmy Iovine and Dr. Dre, Williams' truth will be told. And to further clarify the matter, he has released a narrative in his own words, "N.ot W.ithout A.lonzo," a memoir and audio book, narrated by him and packed with the personal punch, flavor and charisma he is known for.

A sought after hip hop music historian, Williams is often asked to provide commentary about west coast hip hop music and its iconic artists. He has been featured in numerous documentaries and even portrayed in several films, including the motion picture blockbuster, "Straight Outta Compton." But it is his contribution to the hbo four-part documentary, "The Defiant Ones" that has him most excited. The special details the musical and business partnership between Dr. Dre and Jimmy Iovine. Directed by Allen Hughes, the film will include numerous in-depth interviews including Bono, Nas, Ice Cube, Kendrick Lamar, Lady Gaga, Gwen Stefani, Snoop Dogg and Alonzo Williams.

"My inclusion in "The Defiant Ones" shines the light on many things I have been talking about for years. When Allen Hughes first contacted me about being interviewed, we were supposed to spend about two hours together. Two hours turned into six as he was amazed by the history, anecdotes and insights I could share with him. I have nothing but gratitude for him and hbo for taking note of my role and input at the beginning of what has blossomed into one of music's largest genres. It still amazes me to this day, because at the time, we had no clue that our efforts would evolve to this level," expresses Williams.

In "N.ot W.ithout A.lonzo," Williams tells the tale of the 'wild, wild west' hip hop music style, sharing in minute and vivid detail his role in the early days of west coast hip hop music guiding and influencing many of its early players. As the leader of the legendary R&B/rap group World Class Wreckin' Cru, Lonzo is credited with launching the careers of not only Dr. Dre, Ice Cube D.J. Yella and Eazy E., formerly known as N.W.A., but he was also instrumental with positioning artists like Michel'le, DJ Battlecat, the L.A. Dream Team, Rodney-­O & Joe Cooley and Compton's Most Wanted just to name a few. A must read for true hip hop music fans, the introduction to "N.ot W.ithout A.lonzo" is provided by another west coast hip hop music legend, popular radio personality Greg Mack. The audio book version of "N.ot W.ithout A.lonzo" also boasts an original soundtrack underscoring William's narration.

With a focus to uplift youth who are interested in a career in entertainment, Williams stays active on the speaker's circuit with appearances at organizations, high schools and colleges. "Though I'm happy about the popularity of hip hop music culture, I'm not thrilled with some of the elements of it. In the early days, it wasn't about money, gangster bravado, crime and going to jail. It was about the music and keeping it real. My message as I mentor youth is to remind them that hip hop music is really a creative art form and the message in the music is very important. The more I reveal about the early days of hip hop music, the more the truth is unveiled and the more likely we can get back to some of those original concepts," cites Williams. His weekly male mentoring podcast, "Lonzo Presents G.A.M.E. (G.rown A.ss M.an E.nlightenment), is set to launch shortly.

Williams has received a multitude of honors and accolades for his contributions to hip hop music culture. His personal collection of music memorabilia has been exhibited at The Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture in New York City.

Watch Alonzo Williams on "The Defiant Ones" on hbo throughout July as the series airs and repeats. Get educated on the real history of west coast hip hop music with a copy of "N.ot W.ithout A.lonzo" available on Amazon.com

Urban Movie Channel Announces New Original Series 'The Rich And The Ruthless'

 

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UMC – Urban Movie Channel’s summer lineup returns with a fresh slate of titles, including brand new original series, for its annual “Fall Out Fridays” programming block. Every Friday through Labor Day weekend, UMC will add a mix of new series episodes, stand up specials, comedy films, and more, all sure to satisfy any viewer’s comedy craving. A new focus for the first premium subscription streaming service for African American and urban audiences, UMC is thrilled to announce the premiere of its first new original series for the summer, The Rich and the Ruthless.


Created by multifaceted powerhouse Victoria Rowell – known for her starring role as Drucilla on The Young and The Restless, her New York Times bestseller The Woman Who Raised Me, and much more – the series is a soap-within-a-soap that follows a fictional story of the first black run daytime drama in the soap opera industry. The six-episode series stars Rowell alongside Richard Brooks (Being Mary Jane, Law & Order), Dawnn Lewis (A Different World, Major Crimes), Robert Ri’chard (Coach Carter, Chocolate City), Chrystale Wilson (The Player’s Club), Caryn Ward Ross (The Game), Michael Colyar (The Princess and the Frog), Alesha Renee and more. The first episode will premiere on Friday, July 28, 2017 with a new episode added weekly. Catch The Rich and the Ruthless and all of our “Fall Out Fridays” comedy this summer at www.UMC.tv.

In the world of Hollywood soap opera The Rich and the Ruthless, the real drama begins after the director yells, “CUT!” When greedy studio executives inform self-made business man and showrunner Augustus Barringer (Richard Brooks) that “The Rich and the Ruthless” is getting booted off the sound stages for another talk show after twenty years, Augustus is ready to fight back by any means necessary to stay on the air - even if that means filming out of his sleek Hollywood mansion or moving the company to Jamaica! Meanwhile his unpredictable wife, Kitty Barringer (Victoria Rowell), is not happy about any of it. After recently returning home from her latest stint in rehab, she decides it’s time to claw her way back up the cliff and make her soap diva comeback to her role on the show as Blue Sylla, much to her husband’s chagrin. A character driven drama peppered with comedic zingers, get ready for LIGHTS, CAMERA, CALAMITY and CLAWS on The Rich and the Ruthless!

“The Rich and the Ruthless has been my passion project for some time,” says creator and lead actress Victoria Rowell. “A daytime drama with primetime soul, passion, and humor, I and the entire Days Ferry Productions team are thrilled that Urban Movie Channel (UMC) will be home to this original soap opera.” Available at www.UMC.tv, UMC is the first premium subscription streaming service that showcases quality African American and urban entertainment across all genres from RLJ Entertainment (NASDAQ: RLJE). For more information on The Rich and the Ruthless, visit therichandtheruthless.com.

Urban Movie Channel Announces New Original Series ‘The Rich And The Ruthless’

 

rfocus.org

UMC – Urban Movie Channel’s summer lineup returns with a fresh slate of titles, including brand new original series, for its annual “Fall Out Fridays” programming block. Every Friday through Labor Day weekend, UMC will add a mix of new series episodes, stand up specials, comedy films, and more, all sure to satisfy any viewer’s comedy craving. A new focus for the first premium subscription streaming service for African American and Black audiences, UMC is thrilled to announce the premiere of its first new original series for the summer, The Rich and the Ruthless.


Created by multifaceted powerhouse Victoria Rowell – known for her starring role as Drucilla on The Young and The Restless, her New York Times bestseller The Woman Who Raised Me, and much more – the series is a soap-within-a-soap that follows a fictional story of the first black run daytime drama in the soap opera industry. The six-episode series stars Rowell alongside Richard Brooks (Being Mary Jane, Law & Order), Dawnn Lewis (A Different World, Major Crimes), Robert Ri’chard (Coach Carter, Chocolate City), Chrystale Wilson (The Player’s Club), Caryn Ward Ross (The Game), Michael Colyar (The Princess and the Frog), Alesha Renee and more. The first episode will premiere on Friday, July 28, 2017 with a new episode added weekly. Catch The Rich and the Ruthless and all of our “Fall Out Fridays” comedy this summer at www.UMC.tv.

In the world of Hollywood soap opera The Rich and the Ruthless, the real drama begins after the director yells, “CUT!” When greedy studio executives inform self-made business man and showrunner Augustus Barringer (Richard Brooks) that “The Rich and the Ruthless” is getting booted off the sound stages for another talk show after twenty years, Augustus is ready to fight back by any means necessary to stay on the air - even if that means filming out of his sleek Hollywood mansion or moving the company to Jamaica! Meanwhile his unpredictable wife, Kitty Barringer (Victoria Rowell), is not happy about any of it. After recently returning home from her latest stint in rehab, she decides it’s time to claw her way back up the cliff and make her soap diva comeback to her role on the show as Blue Sylla, much to her husband’s chagrin. A character driven drama peppered with comedic zingers, get ready for LIGHTS, CAMERA, CALAMITY and CLAWS on The Rich and the Ruthless!

“The Rich and the Ruthless has been my passion project for some time,” says creator and lead actress Victoria Rowell. “A daytime drama with primetime soul, passion, and humor, I and the entire Days Ferry Productions team are thrilled that Urban Movie Channel (UMC) will be home to this original soap opera.” Available at www.UMC.tv, UMC is the first premium subscription streaming service that showcases quality African American and Black entertainment across all genres from RLJ Entertainment (NASDAQ: RLJE). For more information on The Rich and the Ruthless, visit therichandtheruthless.com.

BET Networks Announces Enhancements To Its Leadership Structure

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BET Networks the nation's leading provider of quality content for African-American audiences, today announced a new streamlined structure and enhancements to its leadership team.

Michael D. Armstrong as General Manager, BET Networks. Based in New York and reporting directly to Lee, Armstrong will drive strategy and operations, with direct oversight of Content Strategy & Multiplatform Scheduling, Marketing, Corporate Communications and Operations. He will also liaise closely with teams across Viacom’s Media Networks, including Strategy, Finance and Research & Audience Science. Programming, Ad Sales and Digital will continue to report directly to Lee. Armstrong will officially transition from his current role as Executive Vice President and General Manager, Revenue & Emerging Brands, Viacom International Media Networks next month.

Jeanine Liburd has been appointed Chief Marketing & Communications Officer, a new role at BET Networks. Liburd, who most recently led Corporate Communications, Special Events and Corporate Responsibility for the network, will add Creative & Brand Marketing to her roster of responsibilities. She will oversee all facets of strategic and creative brand development, consumer marketing and cross-business initiatives.

In an expanded role as Senior Vice President of Business Operations, Donna Blackman will serve as the liaison for all internal BET Networks departments with Viacom Media Networks shared services. She will be responsible for strategic and long-range planning processes, evaluating and establishing external partnerships, developing, monitoring and implementing financial strategies including growing ancillary revenue and live events. Liburd and Blackman will both report directly to Armstrong and are based in New York.

“Today’s announcement outlines key changes to our operating structure that further solidify our position as a thriving global brand,” said Debra Lee, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, BET Networks. “Michael exemplifies the values of strong, dynamic leadership - and his vast knowledge of our industry and how our audiences connect with content is unmatched. Known for their passion for our business and their strong experience in the industry, Jeanine and Donna have a proven track record of developing dynamic strategies that have accelerated growth, elevated brand awareness for BET and engaged consumers worldwide. These appointments will strengthen our ability to drive growth in ratings and digital metrics, achieve strategic goals and deliver strong financial performance.”

BMI Promotes Alison Smith & Mike Steinberg to Executive Vice Presidents

Digital and Radio Facts: Mike O’Neill, President and CEO of BMI, today announced two key promotions within the company’s executive team. Alison Smith,...

BMI Promotes Alison Smith & Mike Steinberg to Executive Vice Presidents

Radio Facts: Mike O’Neill, President and CEO of BMI, today announced two key promotions within the company’s executive team. Alison Smith, SVP of Operations,...

FCC Chairman Ajit Pai to Headline Radio Luncheon at 2017 Radio Show

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Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Ajit Pai will keynote the Radio Luncheon at the 2017 Radio Show on Wednesday, September 6. The Radio Show, produced by the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) and the Radio Advertising Bureau (RAB), will be held September 5-8 at the JW Marriott in Austin, Texas.

Designated FCC chairman by President Donald Trump in January 2017, Pai subscribes to a regulatory philosophy centered on innovation, investment, creating better products and services, lowering prices, job creation, and economic growth. He had previously served as commissioner at the FCC, appointed by President Barack Obama and confirmed unanimously by the United States Senate in May 2012.

During his time at the FCC as both a commissioner and chairman, Pai has been a champion on radio issues, including revitalizing the AM band, cracking down on pirate operations, supporting radio’s role during emergencies, and clearing outdated and onerous regulations.

“Throughout his tenure at the FCC, Ajit Pai has recognized time and again the indispensable role that local radio plays in communities across America,” said NAB President and CEO Gordon Smith. “We look forward to hearing first-hand his plans for strengthening free and local broadcasting.”

Actor LeVar Burton launches storytelling podcast as Stitcher original series

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Award-winning actor LeVar Burton has released a short-story podcast, "LeVar Burton Reads," as part of the growing Stitcher lineup of original audio programming.

In the weekly podcast, Burton — best known for his work as host of the hit PBS children's show "Reading Rainbow" and his starring roles in the movies "ROOTS" and "Star Trek: The Next Generation" — hand-picks a different short story to read in his beloved style. Through the series, Burton takes listeners on immersive audio journeys, covering a variety of literary genres.

"Literature is my passion, and I can't wait to share my favorite new stories with our listeners," said Burton. "Reading is as critical to adults as it is to children, and I think this show will help listeners remember to take time out of our busy schedules to slow down and take in a good story."

In the first episode, Burton reads Bruce McAllister's "Kin," a classic sci-fi story about a young boy who contacts an alien assassin in the hopes of saving his sister's life. Later episodes feature "The Lighthouse Keeper" by Daisy Johnson and "Empty Places" parts 1 and 2 by Richard Parks.

The first episode of "LeVar Burton Reads" is available today in Stitcher and other podcast listening platforms including Apple Podcasts, Google Play and Soundcloud. Future episodes will be released on Stitcher Premium one week before they are available elsewhere.

"When it comes to storytelling, the first name millions of Americans think of is LeVar Burton," said Chris Bannon, chief content officer for Midroll and its Stitcher and Earwolf brands. "'LeVar Burton Reads' connects a truly beloved performer with the fans he's acquired over an amazing career in a whole new medium — audio. It's the perfect new platform to showcase his talents."

Burton began his acting career at the age of 19 through the groundbreaking role of Kunta Kinte in the television series "ROOTS." He achieved further global acclaim through his role as Chief Engineer Geordi La Forge in the "Star Trek: The Next Generation" television series and feature films. He is perhaps best known as host and executive producer of the PBS children's series "Reading Rainbow," which, airing from 1983 to 2009, is one of the longest-running children's series in history and one of the most acclaimed, earning over 200 awards including 26 Emmys and a Peabody. Burton served as co-executive producer for A+E Networks' 2016 reimagining of "ROOTS," which also garnered numerous awards. Connect with Burton at levarburton.com and follow him on Twitter @levarburton.

Stitcher, one of the world's most popular podcast listening services, launched its first slate of original podcast programming in April. The offering is part of Stitcher's long-term strategy to build a robust library of content that is free and supported by advertising to complement its subscription-based offering, Stitcher Premium.

Universal Music Enterprises Names Andre Torres VP/Urban Catalog

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Digital and Radio Facts: UNIVERSAL MUSIC ENTERPRISES (UMe) has appointed ANDRE TORRES, founder of WAX POETICS magazine and the former Exec. Editor of...
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D. L. Hughley Chosen for CBS Comedy Pilot

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D.L Hughley is no stranger to television.  He has done it all from sitcoms to talk shows.  Adding to his resume, CBS has made the decision to make a cast change on the comedy pilot "Brothered Up" by casting D.L. Hughley in a significant role. Romany Malco was originally casted as the co-lead but the shows creator decided to go with Hughley after a solid table read.  Comedy veteran D. L. is ...

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