*(LOS ANGELES, CA) – The Black Business Association (BBA) will celebrate Black Music Month by honoring two nationally renowned African American entertainment icons, music executive and film producer Clarence Avant and radio pioneer Lee Bailey.
The BBA’s 2017 Salute to Black Music Awards Dinner in recognition of Black Music Month in Recognition of Black Music Month will take place on June 20 at 6:00 p.m. at the Millennium Biltmore Hotel, 506 South Grand Avenue, in downtown Los Angeles.
“The business behind the music” is the theme for the annual event which BBA recognizes innovative individuals who make black music the multi-billion dollar economic engine.
“Clarence Avant and Lee Bailey are two of the most influential executives in the music and entertainment industry,” said BBA President and CEO Earl “Skip” Cooper. “They are single-handedly responsible for opening the door and ushering the way for today’s black music genre. The BBA is honored to recognize their contribution to disseminating African American culture around the world.”
Clarence Avant is known as the Godfather of black music for his deal-making acumen and business savvy. In addition to managing artists like Blues singer Little Willie John, jazz producer Creed Taylor and composer Lalo Schifrin (Mission Impossible TV theme), he launched two record companies: Sussex and Tabu, which cultivated the careers of Bill Withers, Dennis Coffey and the S.O.S. Band.
As a businessman, Avant worked with Al Bell to finalize a deal to sell Stax Records to Gulf & Western for $4.3 million, a record amount in the late 1960s. Over the span of six decades, Avant has diligently and steadily built a storied career, including promoting Michael Jackson’s first solo tour and being named chairman of Motown Records. Along the way, he has mentored such producers as Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis and LaFace Records’ L.A. Reid and Kenneth “Babyface” Edmonds. Avant has been honored with numerous awards including a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 2016.
Legendary broadcaster Lee Bailey launched Bailey Broadcasting Services out of his garage in 1979. This was the humble beginning of the iconic on-air magazine RadioScope, which lasted for two and a half decades. The show was a forerunner in syndicated urban radio programming, setting the stage for an entire genre of radio programming. An early adaptor of technology, Bailey launched the Electronic Urban Report/EUR (www.EURweb.com) in 1996. Since its inception, EURweb has become one of the premier urban entertainment and headline news sites on the web with over 1.5 million unique visitors per month.
During the course of his career, Bailey has interviewed music industry superstars from Michael Jackson to Chaka Khan to Don Cornelius. Billboard magazine honored him with an award for “Best Syndicated Urban Radio Program” and he’s also a recipient of the “Men of Courage” award from The Carnation Company.
The BBA’s 2017 Salute to Black Music Awards Dinner in recognition of Black Music Month in Recognition of Black Music Month has been commemorating music industry legends since 1980. Past honorees include Berry Gordy, Jr., Smokey Robinson, Jheryl Busy and Janet Jackson.
For more information on the BBA’s 2017 Salute to Black Music Awards Dinner in Recognition of Black Music Month visit www.BBALA.org.
ABOUT BLACK BUSINESS ASSOCIATION
SINCE 1970, the Black Business Association (BBA), a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, headquartered in Los Angeles, has been instrumental in the growth and development of thousands of African American businesses. The BBA provides innovative information and service programs to our constituents, advocates for change and adherence to laws and programs, and assist companies and individuals to move up the ladder of success.
ABOUT BLACK MUSIC MONTH
African-American Music Appreciation Month is a commemoration that takes place annually in the United States, throughout the month of June. Originally proclaimed “Black Music Month” by President Jimmy Carter on June 7, 1979, U.S. presidents have issued proclamations for the celebration under that name until President Barack Obama announced the observance under a new title, African-American Music Appreciation Month.