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anthony brown

Anthony Brown’s Trust In You #1 Gospel Digital Sales Chart

*Trust in You — Anthony Brown & group therAPy continue to prove their ‘worth’ this week as the new single, “Trust In You,”  soars to  #1 on the Gospel Digital Sales chart this week. Also a critical success, “Trust In You,” is the most added song on the Billboard Gospel Airplay chart.

Anthony Brown

“Trust In You,” marks Brown’s second single on this week’s Digital Sales chart as “Worth” continues to hold strong at #6.

The purposeful worship song showcases Brown’s songwriting prowess and exceptional ability to tap into the heart of a worshipper. He recently debuted the video for the song online to quick positive response. In recent times of uncertainty and doubt, Brown reminds us where to put our trust.

Brown & group therAPy continue to work on their ambitious third album A Long Way From Sunday slated for release later this year. Plans this summer include pop-up performances around the country as well as additional appearances. Brown also recently announced the launch of his new clothing line, Mercy Life + Apparel. 


After spending some fruitful years in the background, songwriter, arranger, and background vocalist Anthony Brown stepped forward in 2012 with Anthony Brown & group therAPy.

The strange capitalization referred to the group’s beginnings in 2000, when Brown launched the group Answered Prayers to showcase his songwriting. As Brown’s work played a role in hit gospel albums like Maurette Brown-Clark’s The Dream (2007) and Stephen A. Hurd’s Times of Refreshing (2009), Answered Prayers evolved into group therapy.

Three years of performances — 2006, 2007, and 2012 — on BET’s annual Celebration of Gospel special preceded their self-titled 2012 debut. Released by Tyscot Records, the album featured guest appearances from Maurette Brown Clark and VaShawn Mitchell. In 2015 they returned with Everyday Jesus, an album that featured the gospel chart-topping hit “Worth.” ~ David Jeffries

Jojo Pada

Judge Allows Juveniles’ Lawsuit Against ‘Empire’ For Filming at their Jail


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Terrence Howard as Lucious Lyon in "Empire" (FOX)

*On Thursday, an Illinois federal judge refused to dismiss a proposed class action lawsuit against Fox drama “Empire” over the way it took over Chicago’s Cook County Juvenile Temporary Detention Center to film several episodes.

As previously reported, two minors, through their legal guardians, filed a 12-count complaint in August 2016 on behalf of themselves and other youth in the facility alleging that officials at the detention center put them on lockdown so it could be used to film the episodes.

Per The Hollywood Reporter, the plaintiffs say were ordered into “pod” areas at the detention center and sat there for days on end, depriving them of their normal school, the recreation yard, the library, the infirmary and the chapel. During this time, their sick requests were allegedly ignored and their family visits were eliminated.

The kids say some of those who were incarcerated had entered the jail having been diagnosed with a mental disorder and that the lockdowns were psychologically damaging. As for their claims that due process rights were denied, they allege the lockdowns weren’t rationally related to a legitimate non-punitive purpose.

U.S. District Judge Amy J. St. Eve writes in an opinion that the plaintiffs have “plausibly stated” a claim. She adds, “In fact, Plaintiffs’ allegations regarding the denial of access to the infirmary and the rejected sick-call requests — alone — state an actionable claim.”

The judge, however, had doubts about Fox being named a co-defendant. St. Eve wrote that the plaintiffs “have failed to sufficiently allege that the Fox Defendants and any of the state actor/government Defendants reached an understanding to deny the juvenile detainees’ constitutional rights” and also isn’t impressed by many of the liability theories put forth including a conspiracy or a “respondeat superior” posit that officials were acting as Fox agents.

Nevertheless, she is allowing the plaintiffs to try again against Fox, particularly in regard to a claim for intentional infliction of emotional distress. The judge also notes in a footnote the possibility of claims based on indemnification.




*Emmy-winning “American Crime” co-star Regina King has re-teamed with series creator John Ridley – (yes, that John Ridley, the one who doesn’t feel black women had or have a voice in the civil rights movement or the modern day black struggle, for that matter) – on a new project titled, “No Place Safe.”

For a bit of insight, read this article that Ridley penned a few years ago for Esquire to understand his disturbing mentally towards black people. And if that’s not enough, read EUR’s latest entry in which he defends his decision to shade black women cause he doesn’t date them. Dude is seriously mentally ill.

Meanwhile, King’s new drama centers on the Atlanta child murders, which has been set up at FX. King is set to star in the project as well as co-produce. The series is based on Kim Reid’s memoir “No Place Safe,” and inspired by her life story. ABC Signature Studios is producing, per Deadline.

OTHER NEWS YOU MAY HAVE MISSED: ‘Guerrilla’ Creator John Ridley Defends Decision to Shade Black Women Because of Asian Wife

no place safe

Wendy Calhoun (Empire) is adapting the book, and will also serve as an executive producer with Ridley and fellow “American Crime” EP Michael McDonald, as well as Reina King and Regina King.

The Atlanta child murders occurred in Atlanta, GA from mid-1979 until May 1980. At least 28 black children, adolescents and young adults – mainly boys- were killed. ATL native Wayne Williams was arrested and convicted of two of the adult murders and sentenced to two consecutive life terms.

King’s series is part of an overall deal the actress recently inked with ABC Studios for her production company Royal Ties. King’s sister, Reina, serves as the company’s development executive.

Ridley is a frequent collaborator with McDonald. The duo executive produces Ridley’s upcoming limited series for Showtime/Sky Atlantic “Guerilla,” exec produced/co-starring Idris Elba. The film centers on an Indian woman who risked life and limb to defend black males.



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*Saban Films has acquired North American distribution rights to “Armed Response,” a sci-fi thriller starring Wesley Snipes and directed by John Stockwell.

Anne Heche, WWE superstar Seth Rollins, Gene Simmons and Dave Annable also star in the film, which follows a team of highly trained operatives who find themselves trapped inside an isolated military compound after its AI is suddenly shut down. The crew begins toWesleySnipesCHIRAQNewYorkPremiere6rSlBZstIuKl-1 experience strange and horrific phenomena as they attempt to uncover what killed the previous team.

The project – from WWE Studios, Simmons and Erebus Pictures, with a script by Matt Savelloni – is now in post-production.




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  *Last Saturday (03-25-17) Central City Productions hosted the 32nd Annual Stellar Gospel Music Awards in Las Vegas, NV at The Orleans Arena.

The annual show, hailed as an “epic night in gospel music,” was hosted by Erica Campbell and Anthony Brown. The telecast will premiere on TV One, on Palm Sunday, April 9 at 6pm ET with encores at 8pm and 11pm ET. Additionally, the Stellar Awards will air in national broadcast syndication April 15-May 7, 2017.

The night included performances by Tamela Mann, Shirley Caesar, Jekalyn Carr, Fred Hammond, Kirk Franklin, Bizzle, Canton Jones, Da’ Truth, JJ Hairston and Youthful Praise, Travis Greene, Jonathan McReynolds, Jonathan Butler, VaShawn Mitchell, Tasha Cobbs, Doug Williams, Keith “Wonderboy” Johnson, Da Chosen Brothaz, Donnie McClurkin and more.

Stellar Awards founder, Don Jackson bestowed special honors upon gospel legend Spencer Taylor (of the Highway QC’s) and Reverend Clay Evans. Stellar Honors Hall of Fame inductees included: Fred Hammond, Mississippi Mass Choir, Catherine Brewton, Harvey Watkins, Jr. and Dr. Leonard Scott.

For more information on TV One’s telecast of the 32nd Annual Stellar Gospel Music Awards, viewers can join the conversation by visiting the network’s companion website at and connecting via social media on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook (@tvonetv) using the hashtags #StellarAwards and #Represent. For more information on syndicated airings of the show, visit and follow on Twitter and Instagram via @TheStellars.

The 32nd Annual Stellar Gospel Music Awards will air on TV One, Sunday, April 9th at 6pm ET with encores at 8pm and 11pm ET.



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Photo Credit: Leon Bennett

Featuring Inspirational Performances By Tasha Cobbs,

Brian Courtney Wilson, VaShawn Mitchell and Gene Moore


LAS VEGAS, Nevada (March 25, 2017)Earlier today, the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP), along with the Motown Gospel label, celebrated gospel music’s most prestigious names and the 2017 Stellar Awards nominees at its 8th annual ASCAP “Morning Glory” Breakfast reception in Las Vegas, NV at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel.

The exclusive ASCAP “Morning Glory” breakfast is one of the premier events leading up to the 32nd Annual Stellar Gospel Music Awards. Hosted by gospel singer and television personality, Lexi Allen, the program featured uplifting performances by Motown Gospel artists, Brian Courtney Wilson, performing his single “Heal (Find A Way);” Tasha Cobbs who debuted two new songs “River of The Lord” and “Forever”from her upcoming album Heart, Passion & Pursuit; VaShawn Mitchell, performing “Joy” and Gene Moore, who performed his single “All For Me.”

“It was great to partner with Motown Gospel again this year for the ASCAP Morning Glory Breakfast,” says Nicole George-Middleton, ASCAP’s Senior Vice President, Membership. “When we launched this event eight years ago, our vision was to provide a pre-show gathering to celebrate the culture of gospel music and honor all of the Stellar Award nominees as winners! I’m excited each year for this event because the spirit in the room is so inspiring.”

 “We were thrilled to partner with ASCAP for another year, hosting the ASCAP/Motown Gospel Stellar Awards Morning Glory Breakfast,” says EJ Gaines, Vice President, Marketing, Motown Gospel. “We share the same heart for serving songwriters and artists, and we were able to recognize some major musical accomplishments, while showcasing some must-hear new music from the Motown Gospel roster.”

During the breakfast, a special surprise Gold plaque was presented to Tasha Cobbs by Ken Pennell, President, Gospel Music, Capitol Music Group for achieving RIAA-certified gold record status for her hit #1 single “Break Every Chain” and toVaShawn Mitchell, who served as producer on the song.

A host of VIP’s, ASCAP songwriters and 2017 Stellar Awards nominees were in attendance at the “Morning Glory” Breakfast reception including: Byron Cage, J.J. Hairston, Jonathan McReynolds, Janice Gaines, The Williams Brothers, Cortez Vaughn, Jekalyn Carr, MAJOR, Tina Campbell, Teddy Campbell, Joshua Head, Darlene McCoy, William McDowell, Alexis Spight, Gerald and Tammi Haddon, Jason Nelson, Kenny Lewis, Pastor Marlon Lock, Pure-N-Heart, Shanika Deshun Bereal, Ajanee Hambrick (of LIVRE), Allundria Carr, Alyn Waller, Bryan Andrew Wilson (of LIVRE), Charles Butler, Christon Gray, Gary D. Hines, Lamonte Harris (of G.I.), Lemmie Battles and Malik Spence (of LIVRE). 

Gene Moore (1).JPGAbout ASCAP

The American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) is a professional membership organization of songwriters, composers and music publishers of every kind of music. ASCAP’s mission is to license and promote the music of its members and foreign affiliates, obtain fair compensation for the public performance of their works and to distribute the royalties that it collects based upon those performances. ASCAP members write the world’s best-loved music and ASCAP has pioneered the efficient licensing of that music to hundreds of thousands of enterprises who use it to add value to their business – from bars, restaurants and retail, to radio, TV and cable, to Internet, mobile services and more. The ASCAP license offers an efficient solution for businesses to legally perform ASCAP music while respecting the right of songwriters and composers to be paid fairly. With 560,000 members representing more than 10 million copyrighted works, ASCAP is the worldwide leader in performance royalties, service and advocacy for songwriters and composers, and the only American performing rights organization (PRO) owned and governed by its writer and publisher members.
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Singer Tamar Braxton attends the Sony Music Entertainment 2015 Post-Grammy Reception at The Palm on February 8, 2015 in Los Angeles

*Tamar Braxton has ditched Epic records and signed a new deal with eONE.

According to The Jasmine Brand, the singer and reality star has officially left Epic records and and signed a million dollar deal with eOne Music. Sources tell the site, “Tamar is talented and she feels like she should be compensated appropriately. She wanted a million. Her deal is in the high six figures.”

Tamar’s last album “Calling All Lovers,” was released via Epic and Streamline. No word on why the “Braxton Family Values “star is no longer with her former label, but you may recall, last June, Epic label head L.A. Reid told reporters, “Tamar didn’t get dropped. The rumors are not true.”

Braxton signed with Epic in 2013, ahead of the release of her second album, “Love and War,” which became a commercial success.

In the months following her termination from “The Real” talk show, Braxton signed an exclusive television development deal with the Steve Harvey owned East 112th Street Productions, for her own talk show and television series.

In the meantime, catch Tamar and her famous singing sisters on “Braxton Family Values” on WEtv.




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*Tammy Brawnerwife of “Family Matters” star Darius McCrary, has filed for divorce amid a nasty battle and wants the judge to keep him away from their infant daughter until he gets help for booze, drugs and his rage issues.

Brawner filed in L.A. citing irreconcilable differences, and made it clear that she has concerns about their 1-year-old daughter Zoey’s safety. TMZ obtained the court docs, and Tammy says she wants Darius to “attend alcohol/drug abuse and batterers’ intervention classes.”

Tammy’s seeking legal and physical custody of Zoey and spousal support. She also wants Darius’ visitation rights cut off until he provides proof he’s completed a treatment program.

darius mccrary & tammy brawner

Brawner’s divorce petition comes less than a month after she accused her husband of hitting her in the head with his forearm. She also said he once held their infant daughter over a boiling pot of water. The couple have restraining orders against each other, with each claiming to be a victim of spousal abuse.

McCrary denied the abuse allegations and claimed in his request for a restraining order that Brawner threatened him with a knife on one occasion and on another occasion, she attacked him with a flat-iron.

“The hot flat-iron burned my chest with a visible inch-and-a-half, 2nd or 3rd degree red burn mark on the right said,” he said in his hand-written filing requesting a stay-away order.

“She has been verbally abusive and degrading to me as a man. She has told me no one would believe me and has told me this would be the outcome if I did not comply,” he wrote.

In her new divorce filing, Brawner listed McCrary’s apartment building as her address, but a judge ordered her to stay away from McCrary’s apartment in the Los Angeles neighborhood of Canoga Park.



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root-759x500There is room in the kingdom for awesomeness in Media!  Love it!!!,  Coco at The Industry Highlighter Magazine:)

*Another Premiere faith-based publication, Root Magazine, celebrates 8 successful years with the first “Leaders of the New School” issue. For the last several years, Root Magazine has thrilled readers with its insightful and interesting look at music, fashion, and lifestyle in the Gospel industry. 

  “I have never been more excited to release an issue of Root like I am with this ‘Leaders of the New School’ Edition. I love old school Hip Hop and I remember when the Leaders of the New School hit the scene in the 90’s. That group brought a sense of excitement to the Hip Hop genre and this current wave of artists that took part in our LONS photo shoot has brought the same sense of excitement to Gospel music,” said Editor-In-Chief, Robert Hasan James.

This special issue, which will debut next week at The Stellar Awards, features a number of exclusive photos and interviews. Included is an in-depth interview with Deon Kipping and how he’s winning his battle with cancer and a look at the growth of Gospel-Worship music and Praise & Worship leader William McDowell.

The issue provides exclusive photos from the exciting collaborative photo shoot with the genre’s top young artists. Never before has a collection of artists gathered together to participate in this type of magazine photo shoot. The ‘family-reunion’ style shoot allowed artists the opportunity to hang out, chill and have fun in a non-stress environment. Photographs were taken by Shalae Madison and art direction by Fatima Burke.


R&B Hall of Fame Museum - wide

*LOS ANGELES, CA – The 21st Century White Negro…The Erasure of the Soul and History of Rhythm and Blues. In 1957, Pulitzer Prize winning author, playwright, journalist and essayist Norman Mailer, wrote his seminal treatise, The White Negro: Superficial Reflections of a Hipster.

Within his manifesto, Mailer outlined how young people rejected the social mores of the era, spurned conformity and aligned themselves with the so-called “dangerous rebels” within the African American culture.

Hipsters morphed into the phenomenon of the White Negro by imitating African American’s style of dress, era-centric lexicons, dance moves and music. Cultural appropriation isn’t a recent development, African Americans have been frustrated by the unabashed “stealing” of their cultural identities by Whites for decades.

Mailer’s timeline of this blatant African American appropriation begins from a benign interest in the jazz era, to its meteoric rise in the 1950’s. He said “so it is no accident that the source of Hip is the Negro,for he has been living on the margin between totalitarianism and democracy for two centuries. But the presence of Hip as a working philosophy in the sub-worlds of American life is probably due to jazz, and its knife-like entrance into culture.”

There’s no denying that African American culture is rich and able-bodied. African Americans are cool, hip, jovial and fun-loving. Our food is rich, our history is varied, our swagger is undeniable and our music is an inviting melodic siren. So it should surprise no one, especially those of us within the Black diaspora, that this hypnotically theft-worthy music is so coveted by those who are seduced by its magic. It sparkles and shines brightly like a rare multifaceted white diamond. However, no matter how beautiful and tantalizing it is, it’s not anyone’s to arbitrarily take. It belongs to the rightful owners and it appears that the ownership has been ignored. There’s an extremely thin line between loving a genre of music and paying homage to it, and flat-out larceny.

Since the 1950s are referenced, lets take a look at one of the most famous blue-eyed soul bandits of the 20th century and that’s Elvis Presley. For as long as anyone could remember, Presley was draped in the garments of music royalty. He was anointed the “King of Rock & Roll” and that title is still bandied about even-though Presley left the building 40 years ago. Everything about Presley screamed African American appropriation; his wardrobe, his swagger, his gyrating hips and the songs that shot him into an unprecedented stratosphere in Rock & Roll. One of his biggest hits “Hound Dog”, was snatched from the repertoire of African American blues singer Willie Mae “Big Mama” Thornton. Her version of the song stayed at #1 on the R & B charts for 7 weeks and sold approximately 2 million copies in 1953. Three years later, along comes Elvis Presley and his version overshadows Thornton’s and the rest as they say, is history. But Thornton was thwarted again when her song “Ball ‘n Chain” was released by Janis Joplin in the late 1960s.

Many African American artists of this epoch were eclipsed by White artists absconding with their songs and never giving credit where credit is due. The self-professed “Architect of Rock & Roll” Little Richard, has been notoriously vocal about how African American artists were treated and literally relegated to second-class musical status. Little Richard is factually influential in shaping rhythm & blues as well as having a direct determinative factor in the lives of singers and musicians across different musical genres. Another great African American musician of the 1950’s is Chuck Berry. Berry is a guitar and musical virtuoso, with such hits as “Mabellene, Johnny B Goode and Roll Over Beethoven”. It has been noted often that Berry “refined and developed rhythm and blues into the major elements that made rock and roll distinctive, with lyrics successfully aimed to appeal to the early teenage market by using graphic and humorous descriptions of teen dances, fast cars, high school life, and consumer culture, and utilizing guitar solos and showmanship that would be a major influence on subsequent rock music.”

Yet with the popularity, and not just with African Americans, of their music rivaling and in many ways exceeding that of Presley’s, neither Little Richard nor Chuck Berry enjoyed comparable accolades, awards, media attention, financial opportunities or airplay. Even now with both inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, their displays pale in comparison to that of Elvis Presley, The Rolling Stones, The Beatles and other White artists and musicians with equal success, and sometimes less. The plight of the African American singer and musician is painful, frustrating and defies reason. The same fate befell soulful crooner Nat King Cole. His career started in the 1930’s, and the 1940’s is when he scored his first mainstream hit with 1943’s “Straighten Up and Fly Right”. He was one of the first African Americans to host a TV show, “The Nat King Cole Show” that made its debut in 1956 on CBS, and all throughout the remainder of the 50’s, Cole continued to compile successive hits. He too is in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame relegated to a lamentable display, not worthy of his talent or success.

Then you have singers and musicians who are mere footnotes in music history such as Big Joe Turner, Louis Jordan, Hazel Scott, Frank “Sugar Chile” Robinson, Ruth Brown, Ethel Waters (the people who remember her, associate her with films, but she was a very successful jazz singer in the 1920’s), Betty Carter, Ivie Anderson (Duke Ellington’s chanteuse during the 1930’s), Fats Waller, Little Milton and a host of others who have been forgotten because of the passage of time and the indifference some people feel about preserving their legacies.

Let us fast forward to today. Legends such as “the Queen of Soul” Aretha Franklin, Gladys Knight, Earth, Wind & Fire, The Temptations, Smokey Robinson, Patti LaBelle, the late great Luther Vandross, the late “Maestro of Love” Barry White, Freddie Jackson, Anita Baker, Mary Wilson of The Supremes, and throngs of other R & B royalty, aren’t fairing much better with their careers and legacies either. With the enormous body of work these artists have compiled, the ones who are still with us will record new music and most pop radio stations won’t play it, even some of the R & B stations won’t put their music on their playlists…shocker! While pop music’s White icon’s such as Madonna, Barbara Streisand (when she wants to do a concert),U2, Paul McCartney, Sting, The Red Hot Chili Peppers, Depeche Mode and The Rolling Stones, are continuing to command millions to play large stadiums, with much of their music on rotations across pop music platforms and some R & B platforms as well.

How do we process the fact that celebrated African American artists, whose music was the sound of multiple generations, are reduced to playing small venues; casinos, supper clubs, bars and fairs, while also not being paid a fraction of what they should be considering they have some of the most recognizable hits ever made? Far too many of our famed African American artists have lived in poverty and died penniless and destitute because of how the system is rigged against them being able to ply their trade on a fair and equitable playing field. To anyone who loves music, this is unacceptable.

Current African American artists such as Beyonce’, Rihanna, Tyrese, Tank, The Weeknd, Chance the Rapper, Usher and Mary J. Blige are successfully recording music, and though the big juggernauts like Beyonce’, Rihanna and The Weeknd are being played across multiple mediums and pulling in millions for their concerts, there’s a caveat; they are paid considerably less than their White counterparts considering they have achieved global super-stardom. But where they are truly feeling their “Blackness” is when it’s time to hand out awards. Each year at The American Music Awards and most glaringly, at the most coveted of all music awards, The Grammys, African American artists are being pigeonholed into one genre, R & B, whether their music is R & B or not.

The major awards such as Record of the Year and especially Album of the Year, will primarily be awarded to a White artist, case in point; Adele beat out Beyonce’ at this year’s Grammys and even SHE was stunned by her own win. The last African American to win Album of the Year was Herbie Hancock in 2008 and that was in Jazz. Only 10 African American artists have won in that category since its inception in 1959. As a side note, Stevie Wonder won Album of the Year 3 times in 4 years. Even in the R & B categories, African Americans consistently have hurdles to overcome because for the last decade, White artists and rappers namely, Macklemore, Justin Timberlake, Robin Thicke and Iggy Azalea, have been cleaning up in that category as well. African American artists are literally being erased from a genre they perfected and created, and the soul of rhythm and blues is on life-support.

That is why now, more than ever, it is important to preserve the glorious history of rhythm and blues with the building of a museum. The R & B Hall of Fame Museum® will be an all-encompassing educational experience for people of all walks of life. It will house collections borrowed and created for the various displays; preserve and educate visitors about the diverse aspects of rhythm and blues. More importantly, the museum will herald the mostly unsung and forgotten rhythm and blues artists with interactive displays, video anthologies, holograms and tours, much like the new Smithsonian Museum of African American History in Washington, DC.

For additional information regarding the R & B Hall of Fame Museum® and details on how you can help make the dream become a reality, visit the website: or contact Lamont Robinson at: (313)266-9635.