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Inspired Gospel News Anthony Brown, Tasha Cobbs, Tina and Teddy Campbell and More

A Long Way from Sunday albumComing. Artist AnthonyBrown and Group TherapyA Long Way from Sunday (Tyscot) by Anthony Brown & Group TherApy was released recently. It contains chart topping single “Trust In You.” To celebrate, a special launch party is being held August 1 at Sony Square in New York City at 5p.m. ET.

Motown Gospel just released Heart.Passion.Pursuit, the new album by Tasha Cobbs Leonard.

RCA Inspiration dropped Le’Andria Johnson’s much anticipated album Bigger Than Me this month. Hit making mainstream music producers Chuck Harmony and Claude Kelly (Whitney Houston, Miley Cyrus, Brittany Spears) were recruited by Phil Thornton, RCA Inspiration’s Sr. VP to executive produce on Le’Andria’s project.

Le'Andria Johnson album cover, Bigger Than MeRCA Inspiration is also gearing up for Travis Greene’s Crossover: Live from Music City album. It will debut in the market August 18. In the meantime, his single “You Waited” sits in the top ten hits on the Billboard Gospel Chart. 

Kirk Franklin’s Fo Yo Soul imprint with RCA Inspiration has new music coming from The Walls and Tasha Page Lockhart.

album cover from The Walls singing group.

The Walls (Fo Yo Soul/RCA Inspiration). Photo courtesy RCA Inspiration.

Plus, RCA Inspiration is set to release the sound track to season two of OWN’s popular church centered television show Greenleaf, featuring music by Le’Andria Johnson, Jekalyn Carr and newcomer Corrine Hawthorne in September.

Tina Campbell’s latest single “Too Hard Not Too” premiered on radio and digital outlets July 28. It leads the way to her forthcoming album It’s Still Personal which streets in September. Music from the project will be featured on Tina’s TV show with sister Erica Campbell Mary Mary which returns for season six on WeTV in September. Before that, Tina will join her sister Erica at the 1st Anniversary of the Get Up Mornings with Erica Campbell syndicated radio show concert, August 7 in Wingate Park in Brooklyn, NY.

Tina and husband Teddy Campbell also host the popular web series Ten Minutes with Teddy and Tina. The series has reached over 200,000 views on YouTube to date.

TV and Film News

TV One will carry Tegna’s new hour-long talk show Sister Circle. It launches in September 11th in 12 markets and nationally via TV One. The show has four female hosts, Quad Webb-Lunceford (Married To Medicine), Syleena Johnson (R&B Divas Atlanta), comedian Kiana Dancie and sports reporter Rashan Ali. The team will discuss hot topics of the day, as well as lifestyle and relationship issues. Sister Circle isn’t leaving out the brothers. Resident music spinner, DJ Q will interject a male point of view.

TV One’s Newsone Now, hosted by veteran news guy Roland Martin, will re-launch this fall as the two-hour Black America Today.

Affirm/Provident Films’ (War Room, Woodlawn) All Saints opens nationwide in theaters on August 25. Based on a true story about a church that was saved by a farm and an immigrant congregation, the film stars John Corbett (My Big Fat Greek Wedding), Cara Buono, Barry Corbin, Gregory Alan Williams (Greenleaf, Hidden Figures) and Nelson Lee.

Meagan Goode, actress and producer, recently wrapped on an untitled film that stars Omari Hardwick. RCA Inspiration’s Phil Thornton and his partners at Ten 2 One Entertainment-Los Angeles are involved in this project.

Wesley Snipes’ Talon Of God

Talon of God by Wesley Snipes and Ray Norman novel coverWesley Snipes debuts his first novel, the spiritual thriller, Talon of God at stores and online now.

The award-winning actor and producer who has 88 combined acting and producer credits, is known to many as the sci-fi film superhero, sword wielding vampire slayer Blade, as opposed to contemporary supernatural thriller novelist. Snipes and his author, Ray Norman, do not disappoint his action films fans with the spiritual themed, fast paced Talon of God. It keeps the reader on edge from start to finish as you comb through the pages to find out what comes next.

Talon of God, published by Harper Voyager, an imprint of publishing giant Harper Collins, has something you do not have in your average novel, a kick butt and taking names female protagonist. The book tells the story of Lauren Jefferson, a Chicago doctor and a woman of faith, whose father is a baptist minister. As a sinister drug sweeps through the windy city fueled by evil-doers and threatens to take control of humanity, Lauren is recruited by strong man of God and legendary demon slayer, Talon Hunter. He trains her to be a spirit warrior. And together they fight off Satan’s army and the forces of evil who want to enslave humanity and create Hell on right earth, Armageddon.

Snipes said, “Ray Norman and I worked hard to write a book that would be compelling to the wide audience of people who don’t just love action and adventure, but also are seekers of answers to the ultimate questions about the Divine Creator’s presence, purpose and power.”

Although Talon of God just hit digital and brick and mortar bookshelves this week, Snipes has hopes, or “faith” that it will show up in other forms in the near future, maybe in feature-length film form. “My creativity has largely played out in film and television – but I’ve always had a desire to write a book.  Collaborating, crafting, creating this novel, Talon of God, was a new and exciting experience for me…and I can’t wait to see if this story finds life in other forms,” said Snipes.

Snipes is currently on the road doing appearances on television and promoting Talon of God at retail stores. His visits include Alamo Drafthouse Sloans Lake in Denver, CO on July 27 at 7p.m. and Barnes & Noble in Huntington Beach, CA on July 29 at 2p.m. He appeared at the Barnes& Noble in Tribeca-New York City and made a stop on the CBS Morning Show earlier this week.

As the novel sinks into the marketplace, it will certainly create a stir in both amongst the religious and agnostics. Besides that, Talon of God is a unique, thriller of a book. It is definitely worth the read.

RCA Inspiration’s Phil Thornton One Year In

Phil Thornton, Sr VP RCA Inspiration.

Phil Thornton, Sr Vice President of RCA Inspiration.

Phil Thornton is one year in as the Sr VP of RCA Inspiration. Thornton is an entertainment executive constantly on the move. With reality TV shows, inspirational music that fuses gospel and urban sounds, and the recent addition of being involved with the Living Legends Foundation, you might say he’s got a Superman “S” on his chest for all the things he is doing in the entertainment world.  Although he has a gazillion things going on,  he still takes the time to share his knowledge with people and artists trying to find their place in the music business.

“Sometimes, I think Superman is definitely my middle name…when I’m trying to just keep the peace and keep it all moving,” said the multi-faceted Nashville based executive.

Prior to coming to RCA Inspiration in 2016, Thornton spent four years at eOne music where his last position was VP/General Manager of Urban Inspirational Music at eOne Music in Nashville. Then he received an offer from RCA Inspiration, which was based in New York at the time, to head up their gospel and inspirational music division which would be moving to Nashville.

Philt Thornton speaking on a gospel panel at the 2016 Urban Network Digital Conference in San Diego, CA.

Phil Thornton speaking on gospel panel at the Urban Network Digital Conference in San Diego 2016.

Thornton was already thriving in Nashville. He was having great success at eOne Music releasing music across genres, such as hits by Shirley Caesar, Lalah Hathaway (urban division), Jonathan McReynolds and Ricky Dillard. Plus he secured a distribution deal between Warryn Campbell’s My Block Records (label home of Mary Mary and Campbell’s wife Erica Campbell’s music) and was involved with the WeTV Mary Mary show. Everything was running smoothly. So why would the hit-maker leave something so successful go to another label? For Thornton, it was the right offer at the right time.

He was doing well at eOne pulling together artists from different genres of music to craft hits that inspire souls as he did with “It’s Alright, It’s Ok” by Shirley Caesar, featuring Anthony Hamilton . He said, “ It’s all in a person’s heart. And they’re a believer regardless if they work in a different space…if it’s a country writer, I welcome it. If it’s a great song and its coming from a pure place, and it’s gonna inspire someone, I’m all ears.” Thornton brought his gift to mix artists and genres with him to RCA Inspiration and his hit making skills to boot.

RCA Inspiration is a perfect place for the creativity of Thornton to expand. Thornton said, “Provident houses our (RCA Inspiration) CCM division, Provident Label Group, Reunion Records – which has everyone from Casting Crowns to Tenth Avenue North, to Zach Williams. Also, Provident houses our Provident Film Group, which produced War Room. Our publishing division, which you know publishes a lot of great Christian and gospel writers.

Le'Andria Johnson album cover Bigger Than MeThornton has been involved in entertainment since he did an internship in radio at age 12. He has put his magic stamp on some of the most anticipated music releases of the year, such as Marvin Sapp’s album Close (slated for release in September 2017) and Le’Andria Johnson’s latest album, Bigger Than Me.

In addition to working with the best producers and music execs in gospel, such as Stanley Brown, Thornton has recruited top mainstream music talent to write and produce gospel projects.

He said, “Chuck Harmony and Claude Kelly, who have worked heavily on the mainstream side, they’ve done records for everybody from Whitney Houston to Brittany Spears to Miley Cyrus, they’re believers, both guys…they moved here to Nashville, recently and I retained them to basically…join me on this journey of executive producing Le’Andria’s new offering.”

In addition to Le’Andria and Marvin Sapp’s projects, Thornton is prepping for Travis Greene’s new music August 18. The album was recorded live in Nashville. Thornton adds, “And then Greenleaf, we partnered with Lionsgate and Oprah Winfrey’s network OWN, to release the season two soundtrack for the Greenleaf soundtrack. Le’Andria is on the soundtrack. Jekalyn Carr is on the soundtrack.

Koryn Hawthorne, one of the new artists that I signed. She’s on the soundtrack and that’s coming out in September as well.”

The Walls (Fo Yo Soul/RCA Inspiration). Photo courtesy RCA Inspiration.

RCA Inspiration is also gearing up for hot new releases by The Walls, and Tasha Page Lockhart on Fo Yo Soul, RCA Inspiration’s partnership with Kirk Franklin. In efforts to branch out, Thornton noted that RCA Inspiration will launch a new hip hop imprint this year.

While Thornton is doing his thing in music entertainment, he still operates in television and management through his Los Angeles based company Ten 2 One Entertainment. His business partners Paul Coy Allen, and Marcus Spence handle its day-to-day operations.

Thornton said of his TV and film projects with Ten 2 One Entertainment, “I still produce. We just wrapped on the latest season of The Manns, which used to be called It’s a Mann’s World on BET. It was on BET, the last season. It just aired in its third season….And we just wrapped on a film that starred Omari Hardwick and Meagan Goode, wrapped that in April…I mean a lot of great things are happening.

After one year as the Sr VP of RCA Inspiration, what’s next for Phil Thornton, the super entertainment executive with hands in music, TV and film projects?

In the words of Kirk Franklin’s hit, Phil Thornton just wants to be happy. He beamed, “Continued success and overall happiness, that’s a big thing to me. To continue to run a great entertainment empire, and having a family to share as well…this definitely a step towards that path and on the journey but I’ve got a lot more in me.”

 

Tamar Braxton Guest Stars on Bounce TV’s In The Cut

Star Dorien Wilson and guest star Tamar Braxton in a scene from In The Cut. Photo courtesy Bounce TV.

Dorien Wilson and Tamar Braxton in a scene from In The Cut on Bounce TV.
Photo courtesy Bounce TV.

Tamar Braxton guest stars on Bounce TV’s In The Cut, Tuesday, July 25 at 9p.m. ET.

The chart topping Grammy nominated singer/songwriter and TV personality helps add more laughs to the hilarious shenanigans on the sit-com when she comes on board as Jackie, the efficiency expert.

In this episode, the shop has recently suffered a decline in revenue after hiring a new, inefficient employee. Jackie (Tamar) is subsequently brought in to improve the barbershop, from the employee’s attire to the decor so that the shop will start to increase its clientele and revenue.

In The Cut stars Dorien Wilson, John Marshall, Kellita Smith and Ken Lawson. The family entertainment TV show was created by Bentley Kyle Evans. In The Cut is produced by Evans and Trenten Gumbs who also produces Bounce TV’s Family Time.

In The Cut airs Tuesday’s on Bounce TV. Tune in and get your laugh on.

Check out this scene from In The Cut with Tamar Braxton.

TV One’s Unsung Spotlights R and B Group SWITCH

Unsung logoR and B group Switch will be featured on TV One’s Unsung this Sunday, July 23 at 10pm ET. The episode will highlight the rise and fall of the talented musicians from the Midwest, from their hit records “There’ll Never Be,” “I Call Your Name” and “I Wanna Be Closer” to members’ struggles with drugs, money and ego, and eventually the breaking up of the original group.

Switch’s Unsung episode will also feature insights from family and friends, including El DeBarge, Bunny DeBarge, Marcus Chapman, Cynthia Horner (publisher of iconic black teen magazine Right On!), and Miller London (former Motown executive and former publisher of Urban Network Magazine). 

The original six members of Gold and Platinum selling Switch were Greg Williams, brothers Bobby and Tommy DeBarge (older brothers of singing group DeBarge), Phillip Ingram (younger brother of James Ingram), Jody Sims, and Eddie Fluellen.

Switch r and b group publicity photo from Motown Records 1970s.When Greg Williams recruited group members in 1976 he had just left a group with ties to renowned R&B crooner, songwriter and producer Barry White.

He said, “Just prior to Switch I was in a group called White Heat. We were signed to Barry White. Actually, Jody Sims, Bobby DeBarge and later Tommy DeBarge were members. We were signed to Barry White and we were on RCA Records. Once that group fell apart, I realized it was time for me to fulfill a lifelong dream to start my own band.

I said I want a group of attractive men who all play and sing, who play more than one instrument. And most importantly, sing their hearts out and have like minds, like temperaments. And so I hand picked everybody…. I actually got the money to do a demo. Put the group together. We recorded a demo. Went to LA, met Jermaine (Jackson) and Hazel (Jackson – Berry Gordy’s daughter), and made this thing happen.”

Switch had a sound that resonated with audiences like no other group at the time. Group member Phillip Ingram said, “The biggest thing was our vocals…that set us a part…usually in a band you will have a person or maybe two that play multiple instruments, that’s not unique, but to see a whole band that plays multiple instruments and sing like a singing group and do harmonies like we did, we were literally set apart…”

Every star group has its highs and lows. Unsung will reveal the good, the bad and the ugly of what happened to Switch.

Switch 2017

Switch. Photo courtesy TV One.

Williams said their problem was drugs and psychological issues. “As the founder of the group, it was weak links in the group, based on Bobby and Tommy DeBarge’s upbringing and their need for security and self assurance, it led to some bad things…I’m putting all of that on Bobby and Tommy…but that was the start of it that ignited it. Because the rest of us, all we wanted to do was make good music and hang and be with each other…. but as money started coming in, other people putting words and thoughts in people’s heads, the door is open for what’s next, including myself, drugs came next…and Bobby, for the most part, the ego came in. But again, that was due to a deficit that he dealt with, what he went through with his dad,” said Williams.

Williams added, “Unsung did an exceptional job of depicting our life’s music in Motown. To coincide with that, August 1, I’m releasing my book, Switch, DeBarge, Motown and Me. It tells the whole truth and nothing but. That’s part of my personal future.”

When asked what did you gain from the Switch experience? Williams said, “What I got out of it is a life’s dream fulfilled. I knew from six years old what I wanted to do. I claimed, I pulled it together, I molded it…not by myself… but just the same and I achieved it, and not only will it live until I die but it will live beyond that and I think that’s all that any man, any human being can ask for.” Ingram chimed in, “The Friendships. The relationships. And the fact that our music has stood the test of a time.”

Switch rebooted in 2004 and performs around the country. To find out about Switch in the new millennium, visit website www.switchentertainmentworld.com

Unsung will tell the story of Switch from their rise to fame at Motown in the 1970s and 80s to their fall from grace, and the show will bring back memories through the group’s hit music. Watch Unsung Sunday, July 23 on TV One, at 10p.m.

 

SWITCH band members Greg Williams and Phillip Williams talk about being on TV One’s Unsung, their rise to fame and falling from grace over drugs, money and ego. Click below to listen.

Ed Gordon Celebrity Special with Omari Hardwick and Queen Latifah On Bounce TV Tonight

Ed GordonThe Ed Gordon quarterly magazine show returns with celebrity interviews with some of today’s favorite African American stars at 10 p.m. ET tonight on Bounce TV.

Gordon, the award-winning journalist who nabbed ground breaking big interviews with O. J. Simpson and Tupac, sits down with the cast of the summer comedy film, Girls Trip. Queen LatifahJada Pinkett Smith, Regina Hall and Tiffany Haddish discuss careers, their real lives and what its like to be an African American woman in Hollywood today.

Ed Gordon, Bounce TV Host in Hollywood with the cast of film Girls Trip. (Left to Right) Tiffany Haddish, Queen Latifah, Ed Gordon, Regina Hall and Jada Pinkett Smith.

Ed Gordon, Bounce TV Host in Hollywood with the cast of film Girls Trip. (Left to Right) Tiffany Haddish, Queen Latifah, Ed Gordon, Regina Hall and Jada Pinkett Smith. Photo courtesy of Bounce TV.

On paving the way for others, Queen Latifah said, “It’s people like Jada’s husband Will (Smith) who helped us every step of the way, so it wasn’t just us When Will got in he helped me get in…I’m going to help somebody else get in. It’s not about keeping it all to yourself it’s about passing it on and keeping that door open.”

Gordon went to the set of Good Morning America to profile former football star turned television broadcaster, Michael

Strayhan. He talks about the challenges he’s faced on his rise to stardom.

Omari Hardwick shares with Ed Gordon what its like being the star of the hit TV series Power and the flack he received on social media about his interracial marriage.

Photo of D.L. Hughley, Cedric The Entertainer and Ed Gordon.

Bounce TV’s Ed Gordon catches up with comedians (Left to Right) D.L. Hughley and Cedric The Entertainer. Photo courtesy of Bounce TV.

To get some comic relief, Gordon talks with comedians Cedric the Entertainer and D.L. Hughley. Cedric the Entertainer discusses comedy in the wake of the Trump era while D.L. Hughley sheds light on the difference between black and white comedy.

The NAACP Image Award winning journalist is known for getting in depth with interviewees. Gordon said, “I try to do more than just sit down and talk about people’s latest project. I always try to get them something a little deeper, something a little more personal than any of the other interviews we do.”

According to Gordon, his first special on Bounce TV received close to one million viewers. It spotlighted the mothers of the movement, women who lost their children to gun violence at the hands of police, such as Sybrina Fulton, the mother of Trayvon Martin and Lezley McSpadden, mother of Michael Brown. Other guests on Ed Gordon have included Nate Parker, the controversial director and star of the film, Birth Of A Nation and singer Maxwell.

If the devotion continues between the fans and Ed Gordon, tonight’s July 17th special at 10p.m. ET on Bounce TV should do well.

 

Ed Gordon talks about his upcoming specials in 2017 on Bounce TV. Press the arrow to listen.

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TV One’s Unsung Returns with Wyclef Jean and Jagged Edge

Unsung TV One image logoTV One’s Unsung returns for an 11th season with back-to-back episodes featuring Wyclef Jean and Jagged Edge, on its new night, Sunday, July 9 at 9pm/10pm ET.

Wyclef Jean is featured on the premiere showing. Unsung gives a glimpse into the ups and downs of the career and life of the former Fugees group member, Haitian born, singer, songwriter and producer since the launch of his solo album, The Carnival over twenty years ago up until his latest project, The Carnival: The Rise and Fall of a Refugee. The new album debuts September 15.

Fans will get learn what happened after Jean left the 90s multi-platinum, Grammy winning trio The Fugees, to strike out on his

Wyclef Jean, singer, songwriter, producer

Wyclef Jean
Photo courtesy TV One

own and become a sought after producer and songwriter. Jean produced hits for himself and fellow artists, like Mary J. Blige, Destiny’s Child and Carlos Santana. The Fugees featured Pras Michel and singer/songwriter Lauren Hill, whom Jean had a relationship. Viewers will see how the break-up between Jean and Hill fueled the group’s demise.

Featured segments include comments from family and friends Melky Jean, Sam Jean, DJ Kay Slay, Kurtis Blow, Claudette Ortiz, Ronald Khalis Bell and DJ Red Alert.

Jagged Edge’s Unsung episode looks at the rise and fall from grace of the bad boy group from Atlanta that made it big in the early 2000s. After severing ties with hit making producer and So So Def label head Jermaine Dupri, Jagged Edge faced hard times in the industry, not being able to make hit charting music that made the group a household name.

Jagged Edge

Jagged Edge
Photo courtesy TV One

Family and industry colleagues contribute to help tell Jagged Edge’s story, including Parker, Bryan Michael Cox, Michael Mauldin and The Poetess.

As a tie-in to their Unsung story, Jagged Edge will release their ninth album, The Layover also on Sunday, July 9.

 

CeCe Winans Throne Room Re-Released

CeCe Winans - Throne Room CD CoverCeCe Winans’ 2003 iconic album Throne Room is being re-released on all digital platforms today by Motown Gospel.

The commemorative  version of  Winans’ popular worship album, Throne Room Gold Edition includes an exclusive unreleased rendition of “Blessed Assurance.”  It was inspired by her tribute to legendary actress Cicely Tyson in 2015 at the Kennedy Center Honors.

When Winans released the original Throne Room, it represented a different direction from her Urban Contemporary and Inspirational recordings. The album was a praise and worship gem. Throne Room quickly ascended up the music charts and was RIAA Gold-certified. It spawned the hits “Mercy Said No,” and “Hallelujah Praise.”

Currently on her national “Let Them Fall In Love” Tour,  Winans will perform tomorrow, June 17 with the Boston Pops at Boston Symphony Hall. The Tour is being presented by Medi-Share.

Ce Ce Winans current album debuted at #1 on the Billboard charts. It features the hit single, “Hey Devil.”

For more information on CeCe Winans visit www.cecewinans.com

 

Rickey Smiley For Real Returns To TV One For Fourth Season

Rickey Smiley For Real is back for a fourth season on TV One, Tuesday, June 13 at 8pm. ET.

This season Rickey’s life goes through changes as the young adults in his life explore life, take on challenges and make decisions that are not always aligned with Rickey’s standards for their lives.

D’essence leaves school to work at a stripper club. Rickey jumps in and quickly moves her from Miami to Atlanta so that she will re-focus, get back in school, find a job, and get back in school. What Rickey doen’s realize is that her return to Atlanta only moves D’essence closer towards a questionable relationship with Cornbread, Da Brat’s artist.

Rickey Smiley For Real TV Show PosterRadio show producer Beyoncé is pregnant and Gary promises to help her throughout her pregnancy. Gary assists Beyoncé’ by attending parenting classes and planning her baby shower. Their close friendship alienates Gary’s good friend Juicy from him. Meanwhile, Gary’s talk show is being shopped.

The family is growing up and going in different directions but they still make an effort to put family first above all else. Beonka and Brandon contemplate marriage. Craig is heading to the Navy. Malik is busy at school. Aaryn comes back home for a visit from Columbia and surprises everyone with her new beau.

Da Brat makes a vow to give back to incarcerated women. In addition, Ed Lover gets Rickey Smiley a matchmaker.

The fourth season of Rickey Smiley For Real is filled with laughs, drama and teachable moments. It is a family show worth checking out Tuesday nights on TV One.

Tamela and David Mann Star in An All New Episode of Mann & Wife

Cast members on set of Mann & Wife: Terri J. Vaughn, Demetrius Brides (special guest star), Tamela and David Mann. Photo courtesy of Bounce TV

Terri J. Vaughn, Demetrius Bridges, Tamela and David Mann on set of Mann & Wife. Photo courtesy of Bounce TV.

Grammy nominee Tamela Mann, and her real life husband, actor/comedian David Mann star in an all-new episode of Mann & Wife, Tuesday, May 9 ET on Bounce TV. This week’s special guest star is Demetrius Bridges (The Vampire Diaries).

In this Tuesday night’s episode of the hit sitcom, MannToni (Tamela Mann) investigates what is behind son DJ’s (Stevie Wash, Jr.) strange behavior while her husband, Daniel (David Mann) and his partner at the police department, Hobbs (Tony Rock) visit a school to try to catch a criminal on the run.

Roger Bobb (House of Payne The Rickey Smiley Show) is co-founder and serves as executive producer and director of the series. David and Tamela Mann also serve as executive producers on the 30 minute make-you-laugh-out-loud family entertainment comedy.

Tune in and check out all the fun Tuesday nights at 8pm ET on Bounce TV.

 

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