by Epic Records


LABELLE TAKES HOME THE “SOUL APPROVED” CENTRIC AWARD

 Fresh off the heels of the release of her debut single ‘Sexify’, vocalist Leah Labelle is already causing an uproar.  She floored the audience this summer at the Essence Music Festival, and received a similarly ecstatic response when she performed at private benefit concert featured in the October 2012 Vanity Fair issue alongside Paul McCartney, Bon Jovi and Usher.  Leah’s graced the pages of Cosmopolitanand Complex, appeared on BET, VH-1 Soul and MTV Jams, and recently inspired Uptown Magazine to offer an endorsement.  “Labelle is more than just a pretty face,” they wrote. “Trust us.”  

And now, up against some serious competition in the form of Daley, Esperanza Spalding, Gary Clark Jr., and Santigold, Leah’s won the prestigious Centric Award at the 2012 Soul Train Music Awards.  The show, which was taped on November 8th in Las Vegas, aired simultaneously on BET and Centric on November 25th.

When Leah’s first single, “Sexify,” debuted in April, she took advantage of the opportunity to perform the song in person in front of an intimate room full of industry tastemakers while, making special guest appearances at media outlets throughout New York.  “Leah belted out the song for us and it was…wow,” Cosmopolitan reported, so impressed that they subsequently ran an exclusive sneak peek of the “Sexify” video on their highly-trafficked website.  The full video for the song premiered on MTV and Leah introduced her music video alongside super-producers Pharrell Williams and Jermaine Dupri on BET’s hit music video countdown show, 106th and Park.  “Sexify” did well, adding considerably to Leah’s fan base, but it was the inclusion of the song on an episode of VH-1’s Love & Hip Hop that truly demonstrated the power of the record and the woman who sings it:  her digital sales increased by more than 500% after the episode aired.

Born in Toronto and raised in Seattle, WA, 26-year-old Leah grew up singing and went on to study music at Boston’s Berklee College.  In 2008, Keri Hilson came across a clip of Leah singing on YouTube and reached out to her, hiring her as a back-up singer.  As word of her talent spread, Leah was invited to tour with Jordin Sparks, Eric Benet, and the Jonas Brothers.  In addition, on the strength of her YouTube clips, she met (and blew away) super-producers Pharrell Williams and Jermaine Dupri, who, with the enthusiastic support of Epic CEO L.A. Reid, signed Leah to Epic/i am OTHER/So So Def. 

Even while she’s busy in the studio, working on her debut album with Pharrell Williams, Jermaine Dupri, and L.A. Reid, there’s no doubt that Leah will capture increased attention.  To quote Pharrell – and to echo Cosmopolitan, there’s only one word for Leah Labelle:  “Wow.” 

For additional informations visit www.LeahLaBelle.com.
 
 
RECENTLY ANNOUNCED: The Rain From London has been nominated for 5 awards for the 2012 RightOutTV Music Awards, including Video Fan Favorite Award!

by David Cohen 
photos by Curran Clark

Openly gay indie-pop artist, singer, song-writer, and producer Darren Ockert is channeling the ‘80’s out of Miami Beach, Florida with his new EP The Rain From London, an ode to his birthplace and throwback to the decade of Madonna and Miami Vice.

Born in the small town of Lincoln, just north of London, England, Ockert has been open about his sexuality since the start of his career. After graduating from The London School of Musical Theatre, he established a theater production company in which he produced Off-Broadway show in New York.

In 2005, Ockert began his solo artist career with his debut album Anything is Possible. The album was nominated for a 2006 OutMusic Award: Outstanding New Recording – Debut Male. His 2009 music video “Celebrity du Jour” was in rotation on MTV and Logo’s NewNowNext Pop Lab

The Rain From London EP was self-produced by Ockert, mixed by Michael Waxman, and beautifully mastered by Vic Anesini at Sony Music Entertainment’s Battery Studios. “I have been inspired by 80s Brit-Pop such as Wham, Eurythmics, Kylie Minogue and Frankie Goes to Hollywood. I infused this pop into my songs, but my electro-pop music has more depth and sophistication in the lyric” Ockert stated.

The four-song EP boasts a lyrical nuance that was missing from these acts, as Ockert writes about moving on from past love, finding new love, and on the title track, feeling homesick for the green pastures and winter rains of his former country. “Growing up in England, I always wanted to live somewhere where warm and sunny where the rain isn’t such a nuisance,” said Ockert. “It turns out, rain is just a part of the British experience and sunshine is a state of mind.”

The Rain From London was released in March, 2012 on Ockert’s own label, Shark Meat. The four songs explore the gamut of Ockert’s personality and musicality. The first single, “The Rain From London” is an electropop gem destined for constant spins at clubs and parties, and is an homage to his homeland, as well as a metaphor for a failing relationship. Ockert’s voice rings out reminiscent of contemporaries such as Daniel Beddingfield or Enrique Iglesias as he laments, “Happy endings always leave me feeling sad.”

After the pulsating rhythms of "The Rain From London," Ockert slows things down for the ballads “The Force of Gravity” and “I’ve Moved On.” EP closer “This Modern Life (1984)” pays homage in more than title, mixing in essences of the darker tunes of the decade with Ockert’s modern pop sensibilities.

The video for “The Rain From London” will be released by the end of 2012. Be prepare to see much more from Darren Ockert in 2013, a singer whose music is well worth listening to. Ockert states, “I’m definitely going to be kicking-it-up a notch, next year, with plenty of new electropop, and performing live across the country.”

For more information about Darren Ockert visit www.darrenockert.com.
 
 
Ciara premieres the video for her new single “Got Me Good” which is produced by Rodney Jerkins.  She celebrated the success of her hit single and birthday (Oct 25th) in superstar, bi-coastal style with a performance on Jimmy Kimmel and the premiere of “Got Me Good” on the Sony Jumbo Tron in Times Square. Clear Channel’s New York station Power 105 had promoted the Times Square Premier this week, and is the exclusive radio partner. The high-energy performance video, directed by Joseph Khan, will go live on VEVO,MTV.com and VH1.com.  MTV JAMS and MTV HITS will air “Got Me Good” every hour on the hour all night long in addition to spins on AMTV.  On Oct. 27th, the video will be spotlighted on VH1’s Top 20 Countdown, and on October 29th, the video will be featured on BET’s hit music video countdown show 106th & Park.   In addition, “Got Me Good” will be front-and-center on AOL Music, Yahoo Music and MySpace Music.  Following an exciting week, fans will be able to get their hands on “Got Me Good” on November 6th available on iTunes

“Sorry,” the first music video from One Woman Army, generated an incredible response when it was released in September.  The video for the song went to #1 on BET’s flagship show 106th & Park and has remained on the countdown for a remarkable six consecutive weeks, holding the #1 position eight times.   The “Sorry” music video has accrued over 7.5 million views on YouTube, and the press are raving.   It’s a “really dope video,” Complex said, while MTV commented that Ciara brings it with “the perfect blend of sexy and apologetic” and Pop Crush claims “Ciara is back in a big way…”

On Nov. 4th, BET will broadcast Black Girls Rock, which features Ciara performing “Sorry” in addition to her #1 hit “1, 2 Step.”   Ciara, noted for both her beauty and her style, fired up the fashionista blogosphere when she showed up on the Red Carpet at the event dressed by Givenchy.

As a singer/songwriter, Ciara’s career has already hit stunning heights.  She’s had eight top ten singles on Billboard’s Hot 100 and has sold over seven million albums worldwide, including more than 4.3 million albums and nearly 7 million digital singles in the United States alone.   Ciara’s won a GRAMMY Award, three BET Awards, three MTV Awards, and was previously named Billboard’s Woman of the Year.  

One Woman Army is Ciara’s fifth album and her first for Epic, where she reunited with her mentor, Epic Chairman L.A. Reid.   It’s a powerfully honest record, and Ciara’s most ambitious to date.  “'It represents my strength, it represents where I stand with love,” Ciara says.  “It represents what I want out of life.” One Woman Army in stores this winter!

 
 
BRENDAN JAMES
Hope in Transition
Rock Ridge Music • Released July 10, 2012


Singer-songwriter Brendan James released his third album Hope In Transition. The album is James’ most hopeful and invigorating collection of music in his critically-acclaimed, seven-year career.  He blurs the genre lines between shimmering soul, confessional folk, and goose-bump inducing pop-rock, and keenly balances a timeless sense of organic instrumentation with a playfully experimental penchant for slinky R&B-flavored beats and tasteful electro ambience. Hope In Transition was produced by Max Coane with additional track production by Julian Coryell.

In 2011, James spent the summer soul-searching and even contemplated giving up music entirely.  When he entered the studio though, producer Coane’s commitment to him as an artist helped James realize music was indeed his true calling.  
“I named the album Hope In Transition simply because of the huge transition I went through last year," James explains.  "When I made my first two albums, the mindset was, ‘Keep your head forward and don’t stop running, keep going, going...’ but I don't care who you are, you can’t keep that up without a break.  Because of the constant motion, I was tired all the time, and was starting to lose the enjoyment I derived from writing. I had to get centered again before I charged ahead.”

The heart of the album is the lead-off single, “Nothin’ But Love,” a song that is instant pop surrender. Over sun-peering-through-the-clouds melodies, James sweetly and limberly flows some brave revelations. “It’s about someone saving you when you’re down,” James says.  “You just feel their love, and feel you’re not alone.” Thus, the song boldly begins: My biggest fear is I’ll let people down and maybe they’ll think less of me/Especially you, you’re the jewel in my crown and I don’t want to mess this up." 


 
 
A Grammy and Emmy award winning artist with more than 25 sterling years and global record sales in excess of 30 million, Cyndi Lauper has proven that she has the heart and soul to keep her legion of fans compelled by her every creative move.

Now the iconic star is set to conquer Broadway, and I'm so happy and excited for her! The talented performer has released “Sex is in the Heel” and a selection of remixes from the upcoming musical Kinky Boots. The remixes are now available on iTunes http://bit.ly/SexIsInTheHeel-iTunes.

2012 has been a phenomenal year for the legendary Ms Lauper, who premiered her own WeTV reality show in partnership with Mark Burnett Productions, released her autobiography on Simon & Schuster and still continues her philanthropic work through her foundation, the True Colors Fund.

Kinky Boots, the new musical that brings together four-time Tony® Award-winner Harvey Fierstein who wrote the book, and Grammy® Award-winning Cyndi Lauper  who wrote theMusic & Lyrics, will have its pre-Broadway world premiere in Chicago this fall.  Directed and choreographed by Tony® Award-winner Jerry Mitchell, Kinky Boots will run in Chicago,  from October 2 through November 4, 2012, in anticipation of a 2013 Broadway opening.
 
In Kinky Boots, Charlie Price is forced to step in and save his family’s shoe factory in Northern England, following the sudden death of his father. Help comes from the unlikeliest angel, a fabulous drag performer named Lola. Together, this improbable duo revitalizes the failing business, while helping one another grow into the men their fathers always dreamed they would become and transforming an entire community through the power of acceptance.
 
Inspired by a true story and based on the film, Kinky Boots features a warm and witty book by Mr. Fierstein (La Cage, Torch Song Trilogy, Newsies) and a richly diverse musical score from Ms. Lauper, in her stunning theatrical debut. Mr. Mitchell (Hairspray, La Cage, Broadway Bares) has crafted a production bound to move, inspire and set audience's feet dancing.
 
 At the Bank of America Theater • 18 West Monroe Street, Chicago IL  • For tickets for the Chicago engagement (Oct. 2-Nov. 4th), go to  BroadwayInChicago.com.

 
 

Get a FREE copy of Kylie Minogue's new album at PINK's booth at the Gay Pride Street Festival, June 23-24. Location: North Halsted Street from Barry Street to West Irving Park Road.


London – EMI Catalogue will release ‘The Best of Kylie Minogue’ on June 19Th. The album features 21 of the best known Kylie songs from her incredible 25-year career, on one disc. The tracks were chosen by the fans through extensive market research conducted by EMI late last year. 18 of the tracks were top 5 in the UK, including 5 number 1’s!

A Special Edition CD/DVD will also be made available, with the DVD featuring all the accompanying videos.

Kylie’s first single, “Locomotion” (later re-titled by Pete Waterman as “The Loco-Motion”) was released on 28th July 1987 . . .  25 years ago this July! She is celebrating this milestone throughout the year with an eclectic program of musical releases, performances, collaborations, publications, merchandise, film and other surprises.

She recently headlined The Mardi Gras in Sydney before immediately embarking upon her bold and much anticipated Anti Tour. Next month sees her performing for the Queen’s Jubilee in front of Buckingham Palace and later headlining Proms in the Park, followed by a continuing series of surprises, world-wide.

The tracklisting for ‘The Best of Kylie Minogue’ is:
Can’t Get You Out Of My Head  • Spinning Around  • I Should Be So Lucky  • Love At First Sight • In Your Eyes  
Kids (with Robbie Williams) • Better The Devil You Know • All The Lovers • Give Me Just A Little More Time • Celebration
Slow • Red Blooded Woman • I Believe In You • On A Night Like This • Confide In Me  • Get Outta My Way • The Loco-Motion
Tears On My Pillow • Wow • In My Arms • Never Too Late

 
 
by  Martha at Fly-Life Inc

PRODUCER RedOne UNLEASHES THE USA’S BEST KEPT SECRET WITH POP BAND MIDNIGHT RED

As the massive popularity of acts such as The Jackson 5, New Kids on the Block, Boyz II Men, Backstreet Boys and *NSYNC can attest, people can’t resist the simple pleasure of talented young guys singing together – and it doesn’t hurt if they’re not bad to look at either. Enter Midnight Red, a new group of exciting performers from across the country who are carrying on that legacy by bringing outstanding harmonies and electrifying dance moves to the pop landscape.

The buzz on Midnight Red was so strong that they were selected as the opening act for the New Kids on the Block/Backstreet Boys co-headlining tour last Summer based on the strength of their digital EP One Club At A Time on 2101 Records/Kings of L.A. Entertainment/Interscope Records.  After wowing audiences across America while on tour with NKOTBSB, as well as their own club dates, the guys are now gearing up for the national launch of their first single, “Hell Yeah” from their forthcoming full-length CD release.

Hell Yeah,” produced by acclaimed hit maker RedOne (Lady Gaga, Pitbull, Nicki Minaj) is an up-in-your-face electronic splash of pop with a driving club beat that will get you out on the dance floor. Arjanwrites.com says "Hell Yeah!" is a hit-savvy tune by a promising new pop act that is, quite frankly, too irresistible to be denied.”   

While it seems everyone is talking about the recent British Invasion - take note of the recent popularity of One Direction and The Wanted - RedOne unleashes the USA's best kept secret with Midnight Red's "Hell Yeah." The group also stands out by bringing a surplus of solid dance tracks to their live shows.  No matter where they perform, it's always their goal to make people want to get up and feel the beat, as evidenced by the amazing reception the group received at Universal City Walk last month.  Click here to view the footage of the guys performing “Hell Yeah” at Universal City Walk.  “Hell Yeah” will be available on iTunes and all other digital outlets on June 19

Midnight Red:
Joey Diggs Jr., 22, from Los Angeles, CA, who says his father, a singer who is best known as the voice behind Coca-Cola’s “Always” campaign jingle, taught him everything he knows. Says Joey; “I’m ready to show the world what it means to chase a dream and work hard to make that dream become reality.”

Thomas Augusto, 21, from Arlington, TX, was called the “little entertainer because “my parents could never shut me up,” he says. A fan of Beyonce, Radiohead, and No Doubt, Thomas has spent years dreaming about being on a huge stage doing what he loves to do. “There were always pyrotechnics in my daydreams, so I know I am on the right track!” he says.

Eric Secharia, 20, from Burbank, CA, describes himself as a “hipster” whom you’ll never catch not smiling. Eric, who has been singing since age 6, and dancing since age 12, plays guitar and cites Stevie Wonder and Michael Jackson as his main musical influences. “They are two people who truly stood out as performers that mastered their craft and used it to change the world,” he says.

Colton Rudloff, 23, from Buffalo, NY, was selected as Midnight Red’s fifth member after being discovered through videos he had posted on YouTube. A huge fan of American Idol, Colton credits the show for exposing him to many different genres of music. “I lean toward artists who have a passion for pure singing,” he says. “There’s no need for all the smoke and mirrors if you have a great voice.”

Anthony Ladao, 20, from Seattle, WA, is the “baby” of the group, and has been dancing since the age of 6 and singing since the age of 12. Seeing Usher perform at the MTV Video Music Awards first sparked his interest in dance and “from there it became my passion,” he says.

Midnight Red was formed in 2009 through the efforts of veteran A&R executive, and Kings of LA label founder, Pete Farmer and super producer RedOne, who brought the group to Interscope Records.

 
 

“Wide Awake” Gets Exclusive Worldwide Broadcast Premiere on MTV during “MTV FIRST: KATY PERRY” 

On Tuesday, June 19th at 7:53pm ET Sneak Peek of “Wide Awake” to be Shown Tonight on MTV during “Randy Jackson Presents: America’s Best Dance Crew” at 10:00 p.m. ET/PT “Wide Awake” Music Video to Premiere on MTV around the World, and Domestically on VH1, TeenNick and Logo 

MTV News’ Sway Calloway will sit down for an exclusive interview with pop-sensation, singer and songwriter Katy Perry for the broadcast premiere of her never-before-seen music video “Wide Awake” at 7:53 p.m. ET on MTV during “MTV FIRST: KATY PERRY.” The worldwide premiere will reach more than 600 million households around the world via MTV’s global network of more than 60 channels, as well as over 300 digital media properties in 150+ territories. Fans around the world will also be able to stream the video online at http://katyperry.mtv.com. 

Following the on-air portion, Katy will stay on for an additional 30-minute interview on MTV.com to discuss her new movie “KATY PERRY: PART OF ME,” as well as “Wide Awake,” the song Katy wrote for the movie. 

In the US, the music video will premiere on MTV’s sibling networks VH1, Logo and Teen Nick and debut on MTV.comVH1.com and LOGOtv.com. In addition, the video will go into rotation immediately on mtvU, MTV Hits and AMTV the following morning.

source: MTV press release
 
 
(New York, NY – June 12, 2012) – Rapper, singer, producer, DJ and larger than life New York City nightlife personality Cazwell has a well known appreciation for men of all kinds. Fans watched the boys beat the summer heat with servings from his Ice Cream Truck and has grabbed, dropped and jerked it all over this year with electro-priestess Peaches and their club smash, Unzip Me.

Cazwell is about to spice things up with his latest single Rice and Beans – an anthem for and about Latin men and all the joy they bring. The fiery song was produced with Mad Decent veteran Jesse Novak (M.I.A., Maluca, Sia and Diplo).  In fact, the music video is so hot that it will make its debut on the notorious adult entertainment site Fleshbot.com on Tuesday, June 12th.

Directed by Marco Ovando, the video features some of the most suggestive dancing yet from sizzling NYC papis and tells the story of a relationship between “an East Village white boy and a Dominican hottie” in Cazwell’s own words. His unique style – bridging the gap between the underground club culture, hip hop and pop music – has attracted countless fans and captured the attention of millions. 

Cazwell has performed and DJ'd at clubs, house parties, bodegas and Pride festivals around the globe and was also named one of the top 50 Gay Male Performers by AfterElton.com. With such diverse supporters like Perez Hilton, Lady Gaga, The Huffington Post, Société Perrier, Wallpaper, NBC and nightly residencies at numerous major New York City hotspots, Cazwell is certainly a presence that is here to stay.

Rice and Beans is from Cazwell's forthcoming album, Hard To Be Fresh releasing on Peace Bisquit. To stay up to date with all things Cazwell, please visit  http://cazwell.com


 
 
POP SUPERSTAR KYLIE MINOGUE RELEASES A SURPRISE BRAND NEW SINGLE AND VIDEO “TIMEBOMB” EXCLUSIVELY AVAILABLE WORLDWIDE ON THE iTUNES STORE.  IT IS PART OF K25 - A YEAR LONG CELEBRATION OF HER 25 YEARS IN MUSIC.

(New York, NY – May 25
th, 2012) – Global pop superstar Kylie Minogue releases a brand new single and video “Timebomb’’ today, May 25, the latest and biggest surprise as part of K25 – a year long celebration of Kylie’s 25 years in music. The song is available exclusively on iTunes until next Wednesday here: http://smarturl.it/KylieTimebomb.  “Timebomb” can be heard on the radio today exclusively on SiriusXM BPM Channel 51 and available everywhere else tomorrow.  “Timebomb” video: http://youtu.be/zL2wGYCINwY

Kylie filmed an electrifying video for “Timebomb” last month in central London, causing chaos as she strolled through some of the busiest streets, leading to huge speculation about what was being filmed. The video, directed by Christian Larson, includes some of Kylie’s sexiest scenes yet – and lovers of her legendary hot pants will not be disappointed. The video is available to view at: http://youtu.be/zL2wGYCINwY and www.kylie.com  

Kylie will perform the song on the semi-final of “The Voice” on BBC1 in the UK this Sunday. K25 is a year of celebrations to mark Kylie’s 25th year in the music industry. So far, as part of the celebrations, Kylie has made a surprise video available on Kylie.com on the 25th of every month. She has also performed ‘Anti Tour’ shows in Melbourne, Sydney, Manchester and London – small, stripped down shows in intimate venues which featured rarely performed material including B-Sides and album tracks.

Kylie will be performing at Queen Elizabeth’s Diamond Jubilee concert at Buckingham Palace in London on June 4, and will also headline the BBC’s Proms in the Park concert in Hyde Park on September 8 – backed by the BBC Concert Orchestra.

Capitol Records Catalog are releasing ‘The Best of Kylie Minogue’ on CD on June 19th, featuring a collection of the public’s favorite Kylie hits.

For more on Kylie Minogue, including news updates, photos, streaming audio and video, and downloads, please visit www.kylie.com.  Follow Kylie on twitter at www.twitter.com/kylieminogue