Tuesday, December 27, 2011

'Pariah' in theatres Tomorrow...MUST SEE!!


The very highly anticipated, in-depth film, Pariah, will hit the theaters in select states tomorrow December 28, 2011. The buzz has been stirring around this award winning cinematic story. Pariah has an amazing cast, including Kim Wayans and new starlet Adepero Oduye, along with the heavy hitting crew such as Writer/ Director Dee Rees, Producer Nekisa Cooper, Cinematographer Bradford Young and Executive Producer Spike Lee .It is a riveting coming out story of freedom.  The Los Angeles Times released a review today stating "She makes all of her character's discomfort with life believable, from the pain of rejection to her fumbling, and sometimes funny, attempts at being "the guy." 

Support OUR films.
Check out the official trailer

Monday, December 19, 2011

Fearless Icon Open Doors to Create Stars in the Community



Fearless Icon Open Doors to Create Stars in the Community
Grammy Nominated Hip Hop Legend, Yo Yo Continues to Pay it Forward with School for South L.A. Youth

In the heart of one of L.A.'s cultural landmarks, Leimert Park, I walked into the Fernando Pullum Community Arts Center (former home of Lucy Florence Cultural Center) and gazed upon so many bright young faces along with their parents who were equally optimistic with pride. I felt the overwhelming positive energy in the room. I was soon approached by a star with the most amazing smile and awesome windows to the soul. She approached me with her arms wide open as she graciously spoke "Hi, are you here to sign up?"


I could not believe that it was none other than West Coast Hip Hop Icon/ Business Woman Extraordinaire, Yolanda "Yo Yo" Whitaker . I observed as she smiled, greeted and embraced each parent and young person. You could feel her smile glow brighter as each new person stepped into the room. In a discussion with a parent, she stated that she wanted to give the young people in South L.A. an opportunity to share their talent with the world. 
MC Flower sporting her Yo Yo School of Hip Hop Shirt



Yo Yo is diligently letting her light shine while shining the light on the youth of the community with her Hip Hop School called Yo Yo School of Hip Hop. Starting the pilot of the program this past summer, Yo Yo and her staff are gearing up to begin the school's winter session on December 19th. Yo Yo's School of Hip Hop is a community program encompassed with hip hop dance, theatre, beat production, artist development and vocal training classes. Also included are life skills such as confidence, love of self, integrity, mentorship, sense of freedom and one of my favorite's ...fearlessness! These young stars will unleash their creative power throughout their winter break. Staff member, Cynthia K. also known as MC Flower, affirmed that everyone gets to pick his/her own "MC" name at the school and each participant gets a cool school t-shirt. She was sporting her distinctive Yo Yo School of Hip Hop shirt. 


Making her dream of having a school a reality, Yo Yo put her plan together, wrote it down, started acting on it and the doors began to open. "When you show up, God shows out," she stated, "You have to come full circle with the power of self." 

Ashley and Yo Yo all smiles


Throughout her years as a hip hop artist, actress, television host, radio personality, motivational speaker and more, Yo Yo has always gave back with empowerment and inspiration dating back to 1991 when she released her debut album " Make Way for the Motherlode" while igniting Intelligent Black Women's Coalition (IBWC). Later she along with another hip hop female legend, MC Lyte began the Let Your Light Shine Foundation.


" I had to get real with myself. I had to go through stages to get here. It is hard to be powerful with someone else when you don't understand your own power. By giving what I want, I am also empowering myself."


She gave attributes to the powerful women that she has encountered on her journey including the phenomenal Oprah Winfrey. She said, "When I met Oprah, I realized how that I did not have to be pretentious, I could simply be...me."


There is still more to come from this Black Pearl. Yo Yo has her plate full with several projects including collaborating with other artists on some new music, one woman show which has the same title of her debut album Make Way for the Motherlode: Yo Yo's One Woman Show and much more including running for congress. The Motherlode has arrived and is here to stay and she is bringing the next generation of stars with her.


For more information on Yo Yo's School of Hip Hop, go to www.yoyoschoolofhiphop.com.

Monday, December 12, 2011

THE GRAMMY FOUNDATION® ANNOUNCES 2012 GRAMMY® SIGNATURE SCHOOLS SEMIFINALISTS

News Release from the Grammy Foundation

THE GRAMMY FOUNDATION®
ANNOUNCES 
2012
GRAMMY® SIGNATURE SCHOOLS SEMIFINALISTS


U.S. High Schools in the
Running for Grants for Music Excellence
 Supported in part by Best Buy,
Campbell's Labels For Education Program,
the Ford Motor Company Fund, and Gibson Foundation
 
SANTA MONICA, Calif. (Dec. 12, 2011)— The GRAMMY Foundation®(www.grammyfoundation.org) today announced that 125 schools nationwide have been selected as GRAMMY® Signature Schools semifinalists (www.grammyintheschools.com) for 2012. Created in 1998, the GRAMMY Signature Schools program recognizes top U.S. public high schools that are making an outstanding commitment to music education during an academic school year.GRAMMY Signature Schools are made possible in part through the generous support of Best Buy, Campbell's Labels For Education program, the Ford Motor Company Fund, and Gibson Foundation. Applications for the 2013GRAMMY Signature Schools program are online at www.grammyintheschools.com and the deadline to apply is Oct. 22, 2012.
 
"The GRAMMY Signature Schools program sustains excellence in music education by granting awards to public high school music programs in communities across the country," said Neil Portnow, President/CEO of The Recording Academy® and the GRAMMY Foundation. "Each of these semifinalist schools should be commended for their commitment to keeping the arts in their curriculum for the long term benefits of their students."
 
In mid-March 2012, the GRAMMY Foundation will announce the finalists for the GRAMMY Signature Schools program. These schools will receive a custom award and a monetary grant ranging from $1,000 to $10,000 to benefit their music program.The top schools are designated Gold recipients. The best of the Gold recipients is named the National GRAMMY Signature School. The remaining schools are designated GRAMMY Signature Schools.
 
The List of 2012 GRAMMY Signature Schools Semifinalists: 
Academy of Music at Hamilton High School — Los Angeles
Adlai E. Stevenson High School — Lincolnshire, Ill.
Air Academy — USAF Academy, Colo.
Albany High School — Albany, Calif.
Allen High School — Allen, Texas
Arizona School for the Arts — Phoenix
Arsenal Technical High School — Indianapolis
Ballard High School — Seattle
Bay Shore High School — Bay Shore, N.Y.
Bethesda-Chevy Chase High School — Bethesda, Md.
Billings Senior High School — Billings, Mont.
Billings West High School — Billings, Mont.
Boston Arts Academy — Boston
Brownsburg High School — Brownsburg, Ind.
Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake High School — Burnt Hills, N.Y.
Carlsbad High School — Carlsbad, Calif.
Central Dauphin East High School — Harrisburg, Penn.
Central Dauphin High School — Harrisburg, Penn.
 Central High School — Philadelphia
Central York High School — York, Penn.
Champs Charter High School of the Arts — Van Nuys, Calif.
Chittenango High School — Chittenango, N.Y.
Clear Lake High School — Houston
Commack High School — Commack, N.Y.
Comsewogue High School — Port Jefferson Station, N.Y.
Crown Point High School — Crown Point, Ind.
Darien High School — Darien, Conn.
David Douglas High School — Portland, Ore.
Davis Senior High School — Davis, Calif.
Detroit School of Arts — Detroit
Diamond Bar High School — Diamond Bar, Calif.
Douglas Anderson School of the Arts — Jacksonville, Fla.
Dover Area High School — Dover, Penn.
Dover Eyota High School — Eyota, Minn.
Duxbury High School — Duxbury, Mass.
East Anchorage High School — Anchorage, Alaska
East Meadow High School — East Meadow, N.Y.
Edina High School — Edina, Minn.
Edward R. Murrow High School — Brooklyn, N.Y.
Elk Grove High School — Elk Grove Village, Ill.
Emerald Ridge High School — South Hill, Wash.
Esperanza High School — Anaheim, Calif.
Evanston Township High School — Evanston, Ill.
Fairview High School — Boulder, Colo.
Flower Mound High School — Flower Mound, Texas
Fort Hayes Metropolitan Education Center — Columbus, Ohio
Freeport High School — Freeport, Ill.
Garden City High School — Garden City, N.Y.
George W. Hewlett High School — Hewlett, N.Y.
Glenbard West High School — Glen Ellyn, Ill.
Governor Thomas Johnson High School — Frederick, Md.
Granada Hills Charter High School — Granada Hills, Calif.
Grand Haven High School — Grand Haven, Mich.
Green Valley High School — Henderson, Nev.
Groton High School — Groton, N.Y.
Guilderland High School — Guilderland Center, N.Y.
Harker Heights High School — Harker Heights, Texas
Hopewell Valley Central High School — Pennington, N.J.
Howard W. Blake School of the Arts — Tampa, Fla.
Irvine High School — Irvine, Calif.
Jasper High School — Plano, Texas
Jeffersonville High School — Jeffersonville, Ind.
Jenison High School — Jenison, Mich.
John L. Miller-Great Neck North High School — Great Neck, N.Y.
John S. Davidson Fine Arts Magnet School — Augusta, Ga.
Johnson City High School — Johnson City, N.Y.
Julia R. Masterman Laboratory and Demonstration School — Philadelphia
Kettering Fairmont High School — Kettering, Ohio
Klein Collins High School — Spring, Texas
La Cueva High School — Albuquerque, N.M.
Lancaster High School — Lancaster, N.Y.
Las Vegas Academy of International Studies, Performing & Visual Arts — Las Vegas
Linn-Mar High School — Marion, Iowa
Long Beach Polytechnic High School — Long Beach, Calif.
Marcus High School — Flower Mound, Texas
Marin School of the Arts at Novato High School — Novato, Calif.
Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School — Parkland, Fla.
Metea Valley High School — Aurora, Ill.
Mira Costa High School — Manhattan Beach, Calif.
Monroe-Woodbury High School — Central Valley, N.Y.
Montgomery Blair High School — Silver Spring, Md.
Morton High School — Morton, Ill.
Mount Zion High School — Jonesboro, Ga.
Mountain View High School — Vancouver, Wash.
Nanuet Senior High School — Nanuet, N.Y.
Nauset Regional High School — North Eastham, Mass.
Nederland Middle/Senior High School — Nederland, Colo.
Neuqua Valley High School — Naperville, Ill.
North Allegheny Senior High School — Wexford, Penn.
Northwest School of the Arts — Charlotte, N.C.
Northwood High School — Irvine, Calif.
O’Fallon Township High School — O’Fallon, Ill.
Penn High School — Mishawaka, Ind.
Poteet High School — Mesquite, Texas
Prospect High School — Mt. Prospect, Ill.
Quaker Valley High School — Leetsdale, Penn.
Red River High School — Grand Forks, N.D.
Richland Center High School — Richland Center, Wisc.
River Hill High School — Clarksville, Md.
Rocky Mountain High School — Fort Collins, Colo.
Roosevelt High School — Seattle
Saline High School — Saline, Mich.
South Orange County School of the Arts-Dana Hills High School — Dana Point, Calif.
Spruce Creek High School — Port Orange, Fla.
Thomas Jefferson High School — San Antonio, Texas
Tri-Cities High School — East Point, Ga.
Tuscarora High School — Frederick, Md.
Union High School — Camas, Wash.
W.T. Clarke High School — Westbury, N.Y.
Walnut High School — Walnut, Calif.
Walt Whitman High School — Huntington Station, N.Y.
Walter Johnson High School — Bethesda, Md.
Warren Central High School — Indianapolis
Warwick Valley High School — Warwick, N.Y.
Waubonsie Valley High School — Aurora, Ill.
West Port High School — Ocala, Fla.
West Salem High School — Salem, Ore.
Western High School — Anaheim, Calif.
Westwood High School — Austin, Texas
White Station High School — Memphis, Tenn.
Whitney M. Young Magnet High School — Chicago
William A. Shine-Great Neck South High School — Great Neck, N.Y.
Williamsport Area High School — Williamsport, Penn.
Winston Churchill High School — Potomac, Md.
York Community High School — Elmhurst, Ill.
 
The selection process for GRAMMY Signature Schools begins each year in August when the GRAMMY Foundation mails notification to more than 20,000 public high schools from districts large and small, urban, suburban and rural, requesting information about each school's music program. Applications are completed and submitted online in October atwww.grammyintheschools.com. After the applications are scored, finalists are identified and asked to submit additional documentation, such as recordings of school concerts, sample concert programs and repertoire, which is then reviewed by an independent blue-ribbon committee of top music educators and professionals to determine the schools that merit GRAMMY Signature School status.
 
The GRAMMY Foundation was established in 1989 to cultivate the understanding, appreciation and advancement of the contribution of recorded music to American culture — from the artistic and technical legends of the past to the still unimagined musical breakthroughs of future generations of music professionals. The Foundation accomplishes this mission through programs and activities that engage the music industry and cultural community as well as the general public. The Foundation works in partnership year-round with its founder, The Recording Academy, to bring national attention to important issues such as the value and impact of music and arts education and the urgency of preserving our rich cultural heritage. Campbell's Labels For Education program is proud to be the official education partner of the GRAMMY In The Schools®programs. For more information, please visit www.grammyintheschools.com.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Can God's Love Reach You in The Dark?...Absolutely!


On December 3, 2011, in honor of World Aids Day, B.L.A.C. Male Productions presented a riveting play entitled "Can God's Love Reach You in the Dark." What better place to host such an experience but in the house of God at Grace United Methodist Church in Los Angeles, CA. If I could give it a grade it would definitely be an "E" for exceptional, engaging, exigent, enlightening and embracing.


Can God's Love Reach You in Dark touched on very sensitive yet extremely significant topics that still remains suppressed specifically within the African American community. Exploring the connections of religion, family, sexuality, hate, acceptance and ignorance, writers Rodger Washington and Robert Howell brought forth awareness and insight with this unforgettable story of a family that is guided by faith but stricken by fear. In the end, it was God's unconditional love that led them to triumph. 


The actors amazingly brought each and every character to life. Outstanding actress/singer, Theresa Ford, played the fierce matriarch, Mrs. Sophia Johnson, who held the family and community together through all the trials and tribulations. Gill Nelson played Mr. Thomas Johnson, the dedicated yet stubborn father and Jerrel De'Angelio O'Neal played the lead as Thomas Johnson, Sr. I will not go too much further into detail but he was absolutely heaven sent. ( You have to see the play)


Supporting roles were played by Mr. Leland White who played "Uncle Tony", Angelle Robertson (Shelly) who played the annoying little sister, Michael Cox (Darryl)  as the sexy basketball star, Richard John Reliford as Pastor Marvin, Saudia Mills (Trina) as the show stopping diva, Bryant Norman as her deceiving beau and Ron English as the deacon. The laughs were nonstop whenever actors Steven Norflete (Nosey Shawn), Byron Marc Newsome and actress Ophelia Harper( Sister Carla) hit the stage.


This empowering evening was hosted by illustrious actor Doug Spearman who emphasized just how essential the messages, awareness and discussions are within our village. 


Casting was delivered by one of the industry's best and finest Jeannine Fisher of Jeannine Fisher Casting



So influentially stated by Director/Producer Spencer Collins, " I believe that through stories, we can change , educate, inspire and HEAL our community. It is important to me that Robert's & Rodger's story be told, but it is also how much we hurt each other with preconceived notions, judgments and stigmas attached to the disease. It's time we BREAK the silence by having a conversation." 

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Community Health & Wellness =WEALTH

Over the past two weekends, something phenomenal has been taking place in local markets in South Los Angeles. Community Market Conversion (CMC), which is a program through the Community Redevelopment Agency of the City of Los Angeles, has hosted a series of Health & Wellness Events.  On Saturday, November 19, 2011, I had the privilege of not only attending but volunteering at the event held at local store Money Saver's Meats.

Money Saver's Meats is well known in the community for having the best Chicken links in South LA as well as having organic vegetables, fresh meat and herbs. It is owned by Los Angeles Native, Ozabe Banks. It is located at 3233 W. Florence Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90043.

Filled with great food, music, face painting by the amazing Kai Sapp, nutritional information, resources, and vendors such as Youth Justice Coalition, this event was absolutely exceptional.  The wealth did  not  cease with that, there were also superb cooking demonstrations by local non-profit Community Services Unlimited as well as Health California, who also provided some healthy cookbooks and calorie tips.

This insightful afternoon had a substantial bonus in having Educator Eleanor Brownn enage in an open discussion entitled " It's Not What You Eat, But What's Eating You."  Eleanor Brownn opened and shared her own personal struggle with her weight. She is an expert on women, mature health and cultural competence. She is also an author and motivational speaker. Ms. Brownn is the founder of Life-Long, a health initiative for midlife African American working women, and the annual Sisters Staying Healthy Conference. In her workshop, Ms. Brownn discussed how to identify "Trigger Foods " and "Trigger Moods" stating that we have to be in tune with what we are eating and what our moods are when we are eating. Identifying these triggers and having control is essential to living healthy.

 The CMC pilot program will transform 4 corner stores in South Los Angeles through a community guided process.

To find out more  about Community Market Conversion, please visit their website at www.communitymarketconversion.org. or email Clare Fox at claremfox.cmc@gmail.com

Analena Hope all smiles at the CMC info table


CMC is adding enrichment to our wealthy community! Get Involved!


Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Attorney General Kamala D. Harris Encourages Californians to Protect their Identities from Theft this Holiday Season


SAN FRANCISCO -- Attorney General Kamala D. Harris today issued a consumer alert with tips on how Californians can protect their personal information from identity theft when shopping online during this holiday season.

1. Consider investing in antivirus and anti-spyware software. If you already have antivirus software, be sure to download the latest security updates, as there are new viruses and malicious programs every day.

2. Use a credit card instead of a debit card. A stolen debit card gives an identity thief a direct line to your bank account, whereas credit cards offer added protection from fraudulent transactions. To be safe, don't store your credit card numbers online, and review your credit card bills monthly for unauthorized charges.

3. Make purchases through websites that offer secure connections. When shopping online, choose websites or e-merchants that offer heightened SSL (Secure Socket Layer) security to protect your personal information. Before inputting your phone or credit card number, check your browser's status bar for an unbroken "padlock" icon, which indicates the site uses SSL. Also, because most email accounts are not secure, it's best not to send payment information in an email.

4. Watch what you post online. The Internet has made it easy to store and share information, but we should be careful when sharing personal information online. Avoid posting addresses and phone numbers on social networking sites, or storing credit card information and passwords in your email account.

5. Strengthen all your passwords and PINs. With so many passwords and personal identification numbers to remember these days, it's tempting to use a birthday, child's name, consecutive numbers, or other predictable passwords or PINs. Use a combination of numbers, letters, and symbols to protect your shopping and email accounts with the strongest possible passwords.

6. Talk to your kids about the dangers of online shopping. Children are often so comfortable and confident online they don't think they need to take special precautions. And identity thieves know this; kids are among their prime targets. Supervise your kids' online shopping and talk to them about keeping their information secure.

7. Shop at trusted websites. Everyone wants to find the best deals when shopping online, but be cautious when using unfamiliar websites. When shopping at a site that is new or unfamiliar, review customer reviews and Better Business Bureau listings to check the site's legitimacy.

8. Be wary of fake online stores. Many online scammers steal personal information by redirecting shoppers to fake web pages that look like the checkout pages of legitimate shopping sites. To avoid these traps, be careful what links you click. Set your browser to block pop-up windows, and make sure you type in the store's web address into your browser window instead of clicking links from email or other websites.

9. Guard your Social Security number. There's no reason for an online shopping site to request your Social Security number to make a routine purchase.

For more information about identity theft, visit: http://ag.ca.gov/idtheft/index.php.

Monday, November 21, 2011

"VH1 Divas Celebrates Soul" Adds Chaka Khan, Erykah Badu, Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings, Boyz II Men, Estelle, Marsha Ambrosius and Travie McCoy as Performers


"VH1 Divas Celebrates Soul" Pays Tribute to the Great Cities of Soul Music Including Chicago, Detroit, London, Memphis and Philadelphia

Special will air Monday, December 19 at 9 PM/8c on VH1

VH1's beloved, popular franchise, " VH1 Divas ," announced today additional performers to join this year's tribute to soul musicChaka KhanErykah BaduSharon Jones & the Dap-Kings, Boyz II Men, Estelle, Marsha Ambrosius and Travie McCoy will join VH1's "divas" in paying homage to these cities and soul music's timeless classics at New York City's Hammerstein Ballroom. " VH1 Divas Celebrates Soul " premieres Monday, December 19 at 9 PM/8c on VH1.

"We are so excited to feature these diverse and multi-talented women and men joining our 'Divas' roster this year to showcase the global impact of soul music and how influential and inspirational the music is to today's chart-topping artists," said Lee Rolontz, EVP, Original Music Production & Development, VH1 and VH1 Classic. "Celebrating the soul music borne out of some of the world's greatest cities being performed by today's top artists with the iconic legends that put soul music on the map prove this year's 'Divas' will be a must-see event."
"VH1 Divas Celebrates Soul" will bring together some of the best singers across the globe, men and women alike, to honor the soulful cities that inspired these divas and their art.  The headlining "divas" were announced at an earlier date including: Mary J. Blige, Kelly ClarksonFlorence + The Machine, Jennifer Hudson, Jessie J. and Jill Scott.

The cities honored include: ChicagoDetroitLondonMemphis and Philadelphia. Accompanied by one of the most exciting groups of modern soul, The Roots, with Questlove as musical director, each diva will pay tribute through not only their own soul-inspired songs, but some of the greatest classics that have shaped a genre.
As in previous years, this edition of "VH1 Divas" will benefit VH1 Save The Music Foundation and its programs to restore music education in public schools.  For more information, please visitwww.vh1savethemusic.org.
This year's sponsors for "VH1 Divas Celebrates Soul" include: AT&T, COVERGIRL, GEICO, Hershey ®'s, Old Navy, Samsung and The Wendy's Company.

Additional performers, presenters, special guests and sponsors will be announced as they are confirmed. 
Visit DIVAS.VH1.com and Twitter at @VH1 and #VH1DIVAS for more information.

Premiering on VH1 in 1998, "Divas" became synonymous with some of the most memorable, live, female vocal performances in television history.  The show quickly became a highly anticipated annual phenomenon, generating speculation among music fans and industry executives on who would be part of that year's telecast.  Last year, the "Divas" saluted the armed forces with "The USO Presents: 'VH1 Divas Salute the Troops" with Katy Perry, Nicki Minaj, Sugarland, Keri HilsonParamore and Grace Potter and The Nocturnals. Previous featured performers over the years included Diana RossTina Turner, Cher,Mariah CareyCeline DionAretha FranklinMary J. Blige, Shania Twain, Faith HillWhitney Houston, Beyonce, Chaka Khan, Adele, Kelly ClarksonMiley CyrusJennifer HudsonLeona LewisJordin Sparksand numerous others have graced the "VH1 Divas" stage.

"VH1 Divas" is executive produced by Greg Sills for Chloe Productions and Lee RolontzRick Krim for VH1.

*Source: PRNEWSWIRE*

Interactive One and Songza Launch BlackPlanet Radio, the First Social Radio Website for the African-American Consumer

Interactive One and Songza Launch BlackPlanet Radio, the First Social Radio Website for the African-American Consumer

Interactive One and Songza Launch BlackPlanet Radio, the First Social Radio Website for the African-American Consumer

BlackPlanetRadio.com makes everyone a DJ with a platform that allows music lovers to curate, share and discover new music

NEW YORK, Nov. 21, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Interactive One, the largest digital media company serving Black Americans and a subsidiary of Radio One, announced this week a partnership with Songza, a leading streaming music service, to launch BlackPlanet Radio, the digital industry's first social radio website targeted towards African Americans. BlackPlanetRadio.com allows users to discover new music in a variety of ways, as well as create playlists from a library of more than 14.5 million songs to share with their social network communities.

"BlackPlanet Radio makes creating music playlists more fun by allowing users to play DJ and share their creations with their online friends, for free from their desktop browser or via our mobile iPhone and Android apps," said Tom Newman, President, Interactive One. "Personal expression and connecting with friends is the essence of BlackPlanet.com and this new extension of the social networking site is a great way for people to connect online through music."

Targeted towards African-American consumers, the new service is integrated with Facebook and BlackPlanet.com, the definitive social network for Black America, allowing users to express themselves and help their friends discover great new music. BlackPlanet Radio will feature digital streams from Radio One's network of 53 radio stations, as well as playlists created by thousands of experts and figures from across the Radio One family of brands including radio station DJs, artists, celebrities, site editors and contributors, and music experts among others.

"For generations, radio has served as an integral part of the Black American experience and BlackPlanet Radio is the digital extension of that cultural pillar," said Barry Mayo, President, Radio One. "We are already leaders in digital streaming as the 12th largest audio streaming company in the country. BlackPlanet Radio will build on this leadership by taking radio's concept of music curated by people and shared with communities, and bringing it to the Web in a way that will connect our audiences more deeply. We believe the best digital music radio services will tap into people and communities -- not just rely on algorithms. BlackPlanet Radio is all about the users."

Social Music Discovery
BlackPlanet Radio is a community-based site that saves busy music lovers time by making music discovery easy and engaging. BlackPlanet Radio is free and allows users to browse, create and curate music playlists organized by a wide range of activities, genres, moods, decades and more.
BlackPlanet Radio keeps a record of what playlists have been listened to in the past and saves favorite playlists to each account holder's personal and sharable music collection. Collections can be shared with friends and organized by era, activity, mood, genre or any other category. Users who log in to BlackPlanet Radio with their Facebook account can organize their favorite radio stations and playlists all in one place and can see what their friends are listening to in real-time.

A Platform Partnership
Songza offers brands an efficient and effective way to have a social music experience perfectly tailored to their audience. BlackPlanet Radio brings together Songza's powerful music streaming platform, which makes it incredibly easy for users to find an expert-made playlist for anything, and Interactive One's expertise in the African-American digital space including its access to some of Black America's most prominent figures and influencers.
"Music is a powerful way for brands to engage with their audience," said Elliott Breece, Chief Product Officer, Songza. "BlackPlanet Radio leverages Songza's platform and BlackPlanet's trusted brand to deliver an incredibly relevant and compelling streaming experience. We're thrilled to see it go live today."
To experience BlackPlanet Radio, visit www.BlackPlanetRadio.com.

ABOUT INTERACTIVE ONE
Interactive One has more than 15 million members and reaches millions of Black Americans each month. With approximately 3 billion annual page views on its suite of sites, the company has become the definitive social network for Black America through BlackPlanet, as well as a number of leading content sites. These sites include: NewsOne (http://www.NewsOne.com), which provides up to the minute, comprehensive coverage of newsworthy events relevant to Black Americans across the country and the world; TheGrio (http://www.TheGrio.com), a video-centric interactive community and division of NBC News that provides original content on topics ranging from breaking news and politics to health, business, and entertainment; TheUrbanDaily (http://www.TheUrbanDaily.com), the eyes and ears for Black Americans looking for what's hot online, on the airwaves, in theaters, and on the street; HelloBeautiful (http://www.HelloBeautiful.com), the definitive lifestyle resource for today's Black woman; and Elev8 (http://www.Elev8.com) a site devoted to elevating the mind, body and spirit.

Interactive One was launched by Radio One in 2008 to complement Radio One's existing portfolio of media companies targeting the African-American community. Since its launch, Interactive One has quickly become the #1 online platform for the African-American community. Interactive One is powered by the mission to create an online community that engages and positively impacts the lives of African Americans.

ABOUT RADIO ONE
Radio One, Inc. (www.radio-one.com) is a diversified media company that primarily targets African-American and urban consumers. The Company is one of the nation's largest radio broadcasting companies, currently owning or operating 54 broadcast stations located in 16 urban markets in the United States. As a part of its core broadcasting business, Radio One operates syndicated programming including the Russ Parr Morning Show, the Yolanda Adams Morning Show, the Rickey Smiley Morning Show, CoCo Brother Live, CoCo Brother's "Spirit" program, Bishop T.D. Jakes' "Empowering Moments", the Reverend Al Sharpton Show, and the Warren Ballentine Show. The Company also owns a controlling interest in Reach Media, Inc. (www.blackamericaweb.com), owner of the Tom Joyner Morning Show and other businesses associated with Tom Joyner. Beyond its core radio broadcasting business, Radio One owns Interactive One (www.interactiveone.com), an online platform serving the African-American community through social content, news, information, and entertainment, which operates a number of branded sites, including NewsOne, TheUrbanDaily, HelloBeautiful, and social network BlackPlanet, and an interest in TV One, LLC (www.tvoneonline.com), a cable/satellite network programming primarily to African-Americans.

ABOUT SONGZA
Songza is a free streaming music service that has expert-made playlists for everything and makes it outrageously easy to find the right one, at the right time. Like a music concierge, Songza helps you discover and save playlists that are the perfect soundtrack for any activity, mood, or occasion. Headquartered in Long Island City, NY, Songza is built by the team that founded crowd-priced MP3 download store AmieStreet.com in 2006 from their dorms at Brown University. Songza is available on the web at www.Songza.com and as an application on the iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch and Android platform.
Facebook® is a registered trademark of Facebook Inc.
SOURCE Interactive One