Morning Show Update
December 8, 2006
Welcome to the Update
Freddie Bell, velvet morning voice talent and General Manager of Z 1470 Totally Gospel (KZTG – 1470) is a mellifluous voice actor, broadcast-journalist and speaker who is also a National Voice Actor. His vast voice over credits, include hosting several radio programs including the Tom Joyner Morning Show, The Love Train, It’s The Gospel in Tampa, The Freddie Bell Morning Show in radio on KSGS – 950AM, Solid Gold Soul in Minneapolis, plus This is Music, The Freddie Bell Countdown Show and The Minneapolis NAACP Community Affairs television Programs in Minneapolis.
Invite Freddie to your next event or seminar as a Keynote Speaker, covering topics including You Gotta Have H.E.A.R.T., Tuning In to R.A.D.I.O, Maximizing Your Potential, Imagination, The Secret Key To Success, Winning Through Community Service, Dreaming Your Way to Success and a variety of topics related to sales and sales management. Freddie shares ideas and techniques he used to propel Solid Gold Soul Radio into a household name and the launch of Totally Gospel radio in the Twin Cities. Call today for booking details. 888-639-9738.
Listen to the Freddie Bell Show, 4 to 7pm, weekdays on Z 1470 KZTG, Totally Gospel, or on the web at http://www.totallygospel.com.
Totally Gospel On the Internet
To enhance your gospel listening experience, you can now hear Z 1470 Totally Gospel on the new http://www.totallygospel.com website. Click on the web stream and then click on the link for KZTG.
No matter where you are, lock it in and write it down. The dedicated Minnesota stream for Twin Cities listeners is up and running. Tell a friend that Z 1470 Totally Gospel is now on the radio and on the internet. Churches, Pastors, Ministers and Evangelists in the Twin Cities and from around the country looking to expand their electronic ministries are invited to partner with Totally Gospel. Call 888-639-9738 today for rates and availabilities.
COULD JAY-Z SURPRISE PARTY REALLY BE A WEDDING?
Hip hop mogul Jay-Z, whose real name is Shawn Carter, celebrated his 37th birthday on Monday, December 4th. The rapper’s girlfriend, Beyonce, has been planning a special four- day surprise party, but according to the New York Post’s Page Six, the party may actually be a wedding. A source told the paper, “Beyonce is throwing Jay a four-day birthday party, but it’s really a wedding.”
According to the paper, party-goers were asked to submit their passport applications by last Friday so that they could attend a bash on a yacht in St. Barts. But according to insiders, guests will be ferried over to Anguilla for the wedding at Cap Juluca, a five- star resort with Moorish villas.
Only time will tell if the surprise party is truly a wedding, as all parties declined to comment when contacted by the paper.
Beyonce and Jay-Z have been dating since 2002.
EDDIE MURPHY & TRACEY EDMONDS DATING?
It looks like funnyman Eddie Murphy is dating film and TV executive Tracey Edmonds, the former wife of multiple Grammy winner Kenneth “Babyface” Edmonds. The two turned up together on the red carpet for the New York premiere of Dreamgirls, with Edmonds telling EOnline.com that the two had been seeing each other for about a month and a half.
Murphy has split from former fiancee Melanie “Scary Spice” Brown, who is pregnant, after a relationship that lasted less than a year. Murphy told a Dutch TV program that he is not sure the baby is actually his. Murphy and Brown began dating in June and both have children from previous relationships. Murphy has five kids from his ex-wife Nicole — their divorce was finalized in April — and another one from a previous girlfriend. Brown, a.k.a. “Mel B,” has a seven-year-old daughter.
Edmonds filed for divorce from her singer-songwriter hubby in January, after 14 years of marriage. The couple have two children.
Click here to see video of Eddie Murphy talking about it.
SNOOP DOGG AND ICE CUBE TO LAUNCH CANADIAN TOUR
West coast rap legends Snoop Dogg and Ice Cube will embark on a 10-city Canadian tour on January 12th. Allhiphop.com reports that Snoop Dogg is expected to be allowed into the country although he’s had several recent high profile arrests. Last year, Canadian Immigration officials began an initiative to keep gangsta rappers from performing in certain Canadian cities.
In related news, Snoop Dogg is currently promoting his latest album, The Blue Carpet Treatment. The latest single from the project is “That’s That” featuring R. Kelly.
SNOOP DOGG/ICE CUBE Tour dates (subject to change):
January 12th – Victoria, Canada – Save On Foods Memorial Center
January 13th – Vancouver, Canada – Vancouver Pacific Coliseum
January 14th – Kelowna, Canada – Prospera Place
January 15th – Prince George, Canada – Prince George Multiplex
January 17th – Edmonton, Canada – Rexall Place
January 18th – Calgary, Canada – Calgary Stampede Corral
January 19th – Red Deer, Canada – Enmax Centrium Arena
January 20th – Lethbridge, Canada – Enmax Centre
January 22nd – Regina, Canada – Brandt Centre
January 23rd – Winnipeg, Canada – Winnipeg Convention Centre
LIL WAYNE SAYS HE’S BETTER THAN JAY-Z
Cash Money Records president Lil Wayne once said he was “the best rapper alive since the best rapper retired.” Now that Jay- Z is out of retirement, Lil Wayne has changed his tune. He told Complex magazine, “I’m better than him. I’m 24 years old. … I’m 13 years deep with five albums and 10 million records sold.”
Lil Wayne added, “I don’t like what he’s saying about how he had to come back because hip-hop’s dead and we need him. What the f**k do you mean? If anything it’s reborn, so he’s probably having a problem with that. You left on a good note, and all of the artists were saying, ‘Yo, this is Jay’s house. He’s the best.’ Now he comes back and still thinks it’s his house. … It’s not your house anymore, and I’m better than you.”
In Jay-Z’s defense, the rapper did clarify what he meant when he said he was “hip hop’s savior.” The rapper told MTV.com, “When I say ‘saving hip-hop,’ I don’t mean like I’m standing on a mountain saving hip-hop. I mean, hip-hop needs events, it needs certain things to happen at certain times, like a spark of energy. Like a (Dr.) Dre album or those moments in time that you look back on when Snoop Dogg first came out, it was like 800,000 (albums sold) in the first week. Those events are needed in hip-hop, and it just felt like it was too far in between.”
The rapper added, “My album, I believe, is just going to do its part. It’s not single-handedly going to save hip-hop. No one can do that. I don’t have those delusions of grandeur.”
YOUNG JEEZY EXPLAINS HIS MARKETING STRATEGY
Atlanta-based rapper Young Jeezy is gearing up for the release of his sophomore album, The Inspiration, on December 12th. Young Jeezy told Billboard.com, “I knew (the new album ‘The Inspiration,’ due December 12th via Def Jam) was going to get leaked, so I flooded the streets with mixtapes. That way, people have something to ride to and they’ll wait until the album comes out.”
The Inspiration is the follow-up to the rapper’s 2005 platinum debut album, Let’s Get It: Thug Motivation 101. The new album features guest appearances by Ludacris, Snoop Dogg, R. Kelly, Keyshia Cole, Three 6 Mafia, Timbaland, T.I. and Young Buck.
Jeezy shared his theory about why his fans buy into his lyrics. He said: “You can mirror me back, like, you can wind me back like a VHS and ask anybody, say anything about me and they gonna tell you exactly what I say. I’ve been doing this, you know what I mean, before music, so it’s like I’ve always been a thorough young dude.”
In related news, Def Jam Records is currently working on a major tour that would feature Jay-Z, Nas, Ludacris, Rick Ross, and Ghostface Killah. Jeezy shared why pulling off the tour is so important. The rapper said, “You have fans in some markets that you really can’t get to unless you’re on those big tours.”
T.I. WORKING ON NEW ALBUM
Atlanta-based rapper T.I. was a big winner at this week’s Billboard Music Awards, taking home several honors, including Rap Album of the Year for King. Billboard.com reports that T.I. has already recorded over 35 songs for his new album, T.I. vs. T.I.P., which he plans to release next summer.
The rapper explained the album’s title, saying, “It’s basically a battle within myself. There’s not nobody out there doing what I do as well as I do it, so I see myself as worthy competition for myself.”
The album will feature production by KO, Keith Mack, DJ Toomp, Scott Storch, Timbaland and Jazze Pha.
The new album will have a tough act to follow as King was T.I.’s best selling album to date. The set has sold more than 1.5 million copies since its release. T.I. explained that he doesn’t worry about the numbers and allows the music to speak for itself. The rapper said: “I’m a firm believer of let the music speak for itself. If people like it, they’ll buy it. Supply and demand is the key rule in any business. If there’s demand for your product, you must supply it. People are gonna buy it if they like it, period.”
RAPPERS ESCAPE SERIOUS INJURY AFTER BUS CRASH
Definitive Jux rapper Mr. Lif, The Coup, Metro, and DJ Big Wiz were some of the artists on board a tour bus that flipped over and caught on fire approximately 30 miles outside of San Diego. Allhiphop.com reports that most of the passengers escaped injury except DJ Big Wiz, Silk-E of The Coup and a merchandising assistant who sustained the most serious injuries. All three are currently recovering.
Definitive Jux founder El-P posted a message on the group’s website that read, “Miraculously, everyone managed to escape with his or her lives. There were injuries suffered to different degrees ranging from minor to serious but everyone is essentially OK and getting treated in various hospitals. The bus and everything in the bus was destroyed in the fire.”
El-P added, “Everyone else is battered, but relatively unscathed.”
The rappers were traveling as part of the “Mr. Lif Plays With The Coup” tour. The tour has been canceled but plans are in the works to make up the dates.
SMOKEY ROBINSON AWARDED KENNEDY CENTER HONOR
Smokey Robinson was among the five honorees on Sunday (December 3rd) in Washington, D.C. at the 29th Kennedy Center Honors. The Associated Press reported that outside a private reception where he was to meet President Bush and first lady Laura Bush, Robinson said that, “This is absolutely fantastic. I’m so honored and so flattered to get this because it not only deals with your craft. They attach what impact you have on humanity to this.”
Also honored this year were Dolly Parton, composer Andrew Lloyd Webber, conductor Zubin Mehta and director Steven Spielberg. Highlights from the John F. Kennedy Center Honors will be aired on CBS at a later date.
One of Robinson’s closest friends, Motown founder Berry Gordy Jr., told The Washington Post that Robinson had a one track mind while going about his craft, explaining that, “It thrilled me that the criticism didn’t bother him. That was a problem I had with so many of the people I worked with. I’d try to help them get better, but they took it personally. Not Smokey. No way. He took every piece of advice and made his work better. I was a pretty good songwriter, but he became one of the great songwriters of all time.”
Robinson and Gordy share one of the longest friendships in music history, spanning nearly six decades. I asked Robinson about the song “Did You Know,” which he wrote and recorded specifically for Gordy’s birthday several years ago: “I wrote that maybe eight years or so ago. It hasn’t been released. I made a recording of it of course and gave it to him, and he has the only recording of it. But it hasn’t been released.”
Smokey Robinson will kick off his next set of shows on January 12th and 13th in Charenton, Louisiana at the Cypress Bayou Casino.
RIHANNA SIGNS ENDORSEMENT DEAL WITH COVERGIRL COSMETICS
Barbados-born teen singer Rihanna just snagged another major endorsement contract. The green-eyed beauty has signed on to become a CoverGirl model, joining a list of other celebrity pitchwomen for the cosmetics brand that includes Queen Latifah, Molly Sims and Keri Russell. Rihanna is set to shoot her first CoverGirl ad campaign this month, with a launch in the summer of 2007.
“I’ve loved makeup and dreamed of being a CoverGirl since I was a little girl,” said Rihanna, who picked up three Billboard Music Awards Monday night in Las Vegas. “Growing up, my mother was a makeup artist and I was fascinated watching her apply lipcolor, blush and mascara. Now I get to be surrounded by all of my favorites from CoverGirl!”
Rihanna was signed by Jay-Z to Def Jam, and burst onto the scene with her single “Pon De Replay” from her debut set Music Of The Sun, which was certified platinum. Her sophomore set, A Girl Like Me, featured the international smash “S.O.S.” and the follow-up singles “Unfaithful” and “We Ride.” Rihanna is currently featured with Sean Paul on the new single “Break It Off.”
ANITA BAKER REPORTEDLY SEPARATING FROM HUSBAND
Anita Baker seems to be having a tough year. According to reports, the Grammy winner is separating from Walter Bridgeforth, her husband of 18 years. The couple have two sons. Currently on a brief West Coast performance tour, Baker was an hour late to her Los Angeles performance last Friday (December 1st), and when she was 90 minutes late for her Sunday show (December 3rd) in Oakland, some patrons reportedly stormed the box office to demand their money back. Baker reportedly performed full shows once she got on stage.
Baker took some heat back in June for canceling some shows, citing vocal problems. But Baker explained to me that her voice was affected by stress, as she was reeling after the death of another one of her backup singers, Grace Ridgeway, just a year after her sister Esther Ridgeway passed: “A lot was going on in June. We lost another Ridgeway sister. Gracie was just slowly leaving us with scleroderma which is incurable and it just took her away and I spent that last week with her in the hospital. And three weeks later I tried to start rehearsals and it was, you know, it was too much.”
Earlier this year the singer was sued by singer- songwriter Kenny “Babyface” Edmonds, in part for canceling two of the five shows they were scheduled to perform during their brief 2005 tour. Baker is scheduled to continue her current tour, with stops scheduled for in Minneapolis tonight, and December 10th in Chicago.
Her most recent release was 2005’s Christmas Fantasy. She is currently working on the studio follow-up to 2004’s comeback set My Everything.
LENNY WILLIAMS BACK WITH ‘IT MUST BE LOVE’
Singer and songwriter Lenny Williams — best known for searing vocals on Tower Of Power hits like “What Is Hip” and “So Very Hard To Go” as well as solo turns like “Cause I Love You” — is back again and sounding as strong as ever. The Oakland, California-based artist is releasing the new album It Must Be Love on the independent LenTom Records, which he formed in partnership with entrepreneur Tom Frye. The first single from the set is titled “Tuesday,” a heartfelt love song that equates every day with being a holiday.
Williams has been recording since the late ’60s, and roared to public attention during his three years singing lead with Tower Of Power. He went on to a successful solo career, establishing a signature style that is emulated by many of today’s R&B stars, including R. Kelly and Usher. In particular, it’s been his riveting “oh oh oh”s that have gained him the most imitators.
Asked about his signature vocal embellishment, Williams says he was inspired by the spirit of late soul star Otis Redding, but he doesn’t remember when he first recorded it. He told me: “I think maybe there was a time period that I did the ‘Oh Oh Oh,’ especially when I was with Tower Of Power doing songs like ‘Just When We Started Making It’ and ‘Willing To Learn’ that I tried to put myself into Otis’ spirit, so then maybe that may have been a carryover. That’s the only thing I can think of, because I try to go back and listen to records to see when was the first time I did it, and I’m not sure which was the first record I did it on.”
For more on the artist and the new release, log on to lennywilliams.com.
BROADWAY’S ‘COLOR PURPLE’ RECOUPS INVESTMENT, SETS ATTENDANCE RECORD
The producers of the smash Broadway musical The Color Purple announced Monday (December 4th) that they have recouped their entire $11 million investment, just one year after the show first opened on December 1st, 2005. The show, housed at the Broadway Theatre, features music and lyrics by Brenda Russell, Allee Willis, and Stephen Bray — all of whom have had success in other musical arenas but had never tackled a Broadway show.
The financial windfall was helped along by the musical’s high attendance rate. In fact, the show reportedly achieved the highest cumulative attendance figures of any new show of the 2005-06 Broadway season, with more than 750,000 audience members now having seen the show.
Oprah Winfrey, who starred in the 1986 film version, invested $1 million into the show during rehearsals. Her backing and relentless promotion of the musical on her talk show helped it to become a word-of-mouth hit, in spite of lukewarm early reviews.
Lead actress LaChanze, who played Miss Celie and has since left the show, won a Tony for best leading lady at ceremonies this year.
JACKIE CHAN INJURED ON FILM SET
Martial arts master Jackie Chan says he’s okay after being injured on the set of Rush Hour 3. According to a posting on Chan’s website, he was hurt by a steel-reinforced wooden table while filming a fight scene late last month. The table was supposed to hit him but it accidentally came up against his chest, which was still healing from a previous injury.
Chan said that he tried to work through the pain of his latest bang-up but was sent to a doctor when medication and a protective belt didn’t ease his suffering. Chan wrote, “I was in a lot of pain because it was in the same spot where I had gotten hurt during the filming of Rob-B-Hood.” On his Rob-B-Hood accident, Chan received medical care when a stunt man kicked him while wearing the wrong shoes.
Chan and Chris Tucker return as mismatched cops in Rush Hour 3 next year.
MARTIN LAWRENCE WANTS TO BE A ‘BETTER MAN’
Martin Lawrence, of Big Momma’s House fame, is putting aside the dresses and the fat suits in order to be The Better Man. That’s the title of the new Universal Pictures comedy in which he is set to star.
The film is about a single father and outrageous talk- show host who reevaluates his life when he returns home for his parents’ 50th anniversary. The Better Man is written and directed by Malcolm D. Lee, who helmed The Best Man in 1999 as well as Undercover Brother in 2002 and Roll Bounce in 2005.
Lawrence’s last screen outings included voicing a bear in last summer’s Open Season, and reprising his undercover detective role in Big Momma’s House 2. The Better Man is slated to open nationally in March 2006.
Words To the Wise
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