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Shanice Wilson’s Mother & Aunt (Crystal Penny) Headline Valentines Wknd Concert



Crystal Penny - Valentines - Original

*Most contemporary music fans know all about singer Shanice Wilson from her signature hit single “I Like Your Smile” and the OWN reality show “Flex and Shanice.”

On the other hand, you might not know about Shanice’s mother and aunt and their group called Crystal Penny. And trust us, as great a singer as Shanice is, her mother, Crystal Wilson, and aunt, Penni Wilson, are no joke either. After all, where do you think Shanice gets her chops from?

Here’s some good news for Crystal Penny fans. As you no doubt know, this coming weekend is Valentine’s Weekend and Crystal Penny will be showcasing their talents and bringing lots of love to the Miracle Theater in Inglewood, CA on Saturday night, February 15 at 7pm.

We’ll have more about Crystal Penny’s Valentine’s show shortly. But if you’re curious about Crystal and Penni Wilson, we got the good, bad and ugly that highlights the ups and downs, the ins and outs of their career that quite frankly, illustrates the dark side of the music business.


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Crystal (bottom) and Penni (top) Wilson

Crystal Penny, originally from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania is comprised of a dynamic duo of sisters Crystal and Penni Wilson, later joined by Crystal’s husband Michael Blackmon. Performing since their teens, their perfectly blended harmonies have appeared on many recordings, including on late maestro Barry White’s classic hit “Practice What You Preach.”  They also have either graced the stage or recorded with Maurice White, Gerald Alston, Lou Rawls, The Emotions, Curtis Mayfield and Diana Ross.

As we said up top, Crystal’s daughter is the mega-successful artist Shanice Wilson and they have also appeared on Shanice’s reality show, “Flex and Shanice,” on the Oprah Winfrey Network.

The sisters can be heard in collaboration with Shanice on the gospel song “Searching” on the Grammy-nominated, “Motown Comes Home CD.” The Wilson sisters also spent a lot of time listening, as youngsters, to a certain legendary singer.

“Crystal and I used to listen to Dionne Warwick records, all day long,” laughed Penni Wilson. “We used to get on our knees and pick out those harmonies.”

However, the two sisters have navigated extremely difficult waters. Indeed, there are many stories of amazing artists that have come to Los Angeles, only have their dreams dashed against the sunny sands of Los Angeles.


The talented ensemble came to Los Angeles with their ship directed to stardom. Crystal ultimately returned to Pittsburgh and brought her daughter, Shanice to California, who first joined them on stage at the tender age of six. Later the dynamic R & B group had the opportunity of signing to one of the premier labels of the Black community, Motown. Around the same time, Shanice was also signed and became a huge star. But success eluded the duo.

“We were fortunate enough to get her launched,” said Penni Wilson.

“We kept doing our thing and intermittently continued to perform and sometimes we did her backing vocals and sometimes she would join us at our shows.”

Crystal Penny, then known as Krystal Penny, signed a record deal, but as many artists have discovered, signing a record deal is no guarantee of success.

“It was so heartbreaking,” said Penni Wilson, “when Motown refused to release our record, my sister and I were literally depressed for a long time … to the extent that we didn’t leave our house for weeks. It was horrible. All your life you dream for something, you finally get it, and someone snatches it away.”


Additionally, the duo refused to compromise their character to succeed in the music industry- their strong moral upbringing dictating otherwise.

“We have a lot of integrity- doing things we could have done that we chose not to do-because sometimes in the entertainment industry, you have to sell your soul and we weren’t willing to do that.”

Although a devastating prospect, the ladies were undeterred, knowing that their talent and amazing harmonies would get them through. They got a reputation for their singing and garnered respect from several amazing artists, including one of music’s biggest legends.

“We even did a background session for Diana Ross, on her record, ‘You Make Me So Very Happy,’” said Penni.  Crystal Penny refused to let their travails get in the way of their considerable gifts.

“Through my faith and through my mother, who was very influential in our lives and traveled the world with Shanice, we were able to grow past that and to understand that the gifts we had were to share and bless people,” said Penni, “and just being thankful for it and maybe make some money along the way.”

crystal penny valentines show

OK, as we said up top, Crystal and Penny (and Michael) have a show coming up this Valentine’s Day weekend (this Saturday, Feb 15), where their talents will be on full display.

“When we come on, we’re going to come out with a lot of love and a lot of positivity with beautiful harmonies to show that love and share it with the audience,” said Penni Wilson. Indeed, the resilience of these lovely ladies will inspire others that you can navigate life’s difficult waters with beautiful harmonies.

Crystal Penny’s magnificent harmonies will be on full display, after a long hiatus at the Miracle Inglewood Theater, on February 15, 2020, “A Night of Love and Harmony,” at 7pm, 226 S. Market St. Inglewood, California 90301. For tickets call Isadore at (323) 351-7662 or visit



Oh yeah, there’s this. Penni reminds us that Shanice has a lipstick line out! To purchase or get more info, click here: or e-mail [email protected].

Follow Crystal Penny on Facebook:

Purchase Crystal Penny music here:

Buddy Sampson

Buddy Sampson

Buddy Sampson is a Southern California based writer. Contact him via [email protected].




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The Virtual United Negro College Fund Tour Heads to NY, DC & NJ on Fri & Sat-Nov. 20 & 21 (EUR EXCLUSIVE!)




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*African American students interested in going to college can attend the United Negro College Fund’s (UNCF) Fall 2020 virtual Empower Me Tour. Set for this Friday and Saturday (November 20 & 21, 2020), New York, District of Columbia, and New Jersey will be repped. (This year’s tour kicked off earlier this month in Wisconsin and Illinois). To register, go here.

The Empower Me Tour is an extension of the goals of the UNCF. Founded in 1944, the UNCF, a non-profit, has raised more than $5 billion and helped more than 500,000 students attend 37 private historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs).

The EUR caught up with Stacey Lee, the tour’s director for four years, who discussed the importance of the event.

“The UNCF is the nation’s largest provider of education support to minority students,” said Lee. “The Empowerment Tour has been executed for the past 12 years and last year along we offered over $12 million dollars in scholarships.”

MORE NEWS/RELATED: BMEE Authors: Urgent Steps Are Necessary to Address Implicit Bias in Early Education  

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Stacey Lee, director of the Empower Me Tour. (Photo credit: UNCF)

Lee continued, “I think the great thing is that during these times, even with COVID-19, is that a number of corporations (Wells Fargo/P&/FedEx/Disney/Goldman Sachs) and donors have really been providing opportunity and financial access to our schools and students.”

The tour is packed with information and resources so that students and parents have the right tools to make informed decisions.

“It’s a free event that provides educational support, scholarships, interviews with colleges, empowerment, and information on how to get to and through college. We also provide this information for parents as well. We have a parent section that focuses on financial aid and the things you need to get your students to college.”

emt offering

Source: Empower Me Tour

Lee continued, “Sometimes we have students that don’t realize that they can attend college. They can receive scholarships. Some of them don’t even know what an HBCU is. So, it’s inspirational for me to see these students receive this information and the excitement that’s around this tour.”

In addition to college information, panel sessions on issues affecting the community will also take place. Legendary rapper Bun B will be part of a special My Black Is Beautiful panel. The panel will have discussions with girls and boys and the MC will lead the male portion.

“It’s about empowerment,” Bun B told the EUR. “It’s vital for us to lift each other up and amplify each other’s voices. We just talk about now what that role is in this COVID world. And with everything that we are seeing with young Black men on television, we want to keep them motivated and centered. We want to make sure that they are not discouraged in this moment.”

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Legendary rapper Bun B is a panelist at the Empower Me Tour. (Photo credit: UNCF)

Ever since Kamala Harris threw her hat into the presidential race and elected vice president of the United States, a spotlight has shined on the fact that she’s an HBCU grad (Howard University) and member of the African American sorority Alpha Kappa Alpha. These facts are not lost on the UNCF.

“Kamala has really boosted people’s awareness about HBCUs and (African American sororities) and the type of people that come out of HBCUs. HBCUS have also provided so many people from science, mathematics, and engineering programs (STEM).”

Bun B added, “We have more than enough examples to show you how beneficial an education from an HBCU can be. So, there is no reason to not be a part of an HBCU because the world is just as available to you as it is for anyone else attending any other type of university.”

Register for the virtual Empower Me Tour on November 20 & 21, 2020 here. Spring tour dates will be announced soon. For general information on the United Negro College Fund, go here.

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(Photo credit: UNCF)

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Apple News

New Music Buzz: Jazzy Rita Shelby’s ‘Goodbye 2020’



Goodbye 2020 Jazzy Rita Shelby
Goodbye 2020 Jazzy Rita Shelby

After all that’s happened this year, it’s time to say Goodbye 2020. New single available by Jazzy Rita Shelby at most digital platforms.

*SB Music presents “Goodbye 2020” a new single for the times we are in.

“Goodbye 2020” is performed by Jazzy Rita Shelby and written by Miss Shelby (ASCAP) and Eddie Lawrence Miller (BMI).

It’s the perfect anthem to end a year that has impacted the globe.

Jazzy Rita Shelby Goodbye 2020 looking up - Copy

Jazzy Rita Shelby is fed up with this year and elated about her new single “Goodbye 2020.” Avail now from SB Music (Written by L. Shelby & E. Miller)

EURweb’s Jazzy Rita is also a prolific lyricist who has teamed up with Eddie Miller for “Goodbye 2020” because it was timely and convenient for the birth of a song such as this.

Eddie Miller is a coveted keyboardist & vocalist who performs regularly with Brian Culbertson and he’s the Rhodes Festival musical director. Jazzy Rita rose to notoriety as host & performer at The Starlight Jazz Serenade, an annual benefit concert in North Hollywood with an A list of stars.  As a teen Miss Shelby was inspired to write songs by the legendary David Porter.

This year has been a year like no other.  “Goodbye 2020” is an ode to the world for the year that we have seen and the hope that lies ahead.  Radio Programmers click here for adds.

MORE NEWS: THE REAL: The Ladies’ Experience With Stereotypes in Hollywood. Plus, Cheryl Hines Is Here!

“Goodbye 2020” is released on the SB Music label and was recorded at Wishing Wells Studio in Canoga Park, CA.  Willie Daniels and Mildred Black perform background vocals along with Jazzy Rita.  The video is produced & directed by Jazzy Rita (LaRita Shelby), filmed & edited by Reggie Simon of Simon Vision Media, with wardrobe styling by Jazzy Rita and Poet Roni Girl’s Army Couture.  “Goodbye 2020” is available on most digital platforms.  Click here to listen on Spotify.


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Apple News

Celebrate Halloween with ‘Spell’ Starring Omari Hardwick, Loretta Devine and John Beasley / WATCH




Spell - poster

*Today/TONIGHT is Halloween and what could be a more perfect way to celebrate than with the release of SPELL? Enjoy the clips below to get you in the spooky spirit!

Omari Hardwick (“Power,” Sorry to Bother You), Loretta Devine (“Black-ish,” Crash) and John Beasley (The Sum of All FearsThe Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks) star in the terrifying thriller SPELL, coming to Premium Video-On-Demand and Digital today October 30 from Paramount Home Entertainment.

While flying to his father’s funeral in rural Appalachia, an intense storm causes Marquis (Omari Hardwick) to lose control of the plane carrying him and his family.  He awakens wounded, alone and trapped in Ms. Eloise’s (Loretta Devine) attic, who claims she can nurse him back to health with the Boogity, a Hoodoo figure she has made from his blood and skin. Unable to call for help, Marquis desperately tries to outwit and break free from her dark magic and save his family from a sinister ritual before the rise of the blood moon.

WHOA! READ THIS: Disabled Siblings Found Living with Dead Body of Mother Decomposing Under Pile of Clothes

DIRECTED BY | Mark Tonderai


STARRING | Omari Hardwick, Loretta Devine, John Beasley

AVAILABLE ON DIGITAL PLATFORMS | Apple TV, Amazon Prime Video, Google Play, DirecTV, VUDU, Xfinity, FandangoNOW and more.

Rating | R – violence, disturbing/bloody images, and language







Paige Theall


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