*“We just signed a new artist, Wae. He is a Hip-Hop artist, a rapper. He’s coming out in March,” said Angel Sessions, a maverick in the music industry, about her “indie” label Atlas Elite Entertainment (AEE) roster. “I can’t wait for you to hear him.”
Angel’s partners on the record label imprint are industry professionals as well. They include Rodney Crews and Demetrius Guidry. They launched the label together in 2017 to release Sessions new material. “Evolution” was her first release on the label; it debuted at #1 on one of the Amazon charts.
“I’m a Grammy voter and I got tired of not being taken seriously. I felt I needed to start my own label,” Angel said. “Back in the 90s it was hard getting a record deal and meeting people.”
However, she did not let that stop her. By the time she launched AEE Sessions was a veteran in the music industry, which started with her performing at Grammy pre-parties. Those Grammy pre-party performances led to her first record deals with Pittmobile/Ichiban Records and Volt Records. She initially signed a record deal with the Pittmobile label in 1998, which was owned by producer/songwriter Fred Pittman. While at Pittmobile she released “Introducing Angel.” The label’s distributor Ichiba Records was sold soon after, so she found herself with her sophomore project, “Love Ride,” in hand searching for a new label. In 1999 she signed a record deal with Phil Jones, who was Vice President of Fantasy Records. He signed her to the Volt Records imprint. The single from “Love Ride” titled “Get It Right” was accompanied with a music video that starred actor/director Fred Williamson (Black Cobra). One of many songwriters on her “Love Ride” project on the Volt label included Tony Camillo (“Midnight Train to Georgia”). The Volt imprint was also the home for Lenny Williams, Freda Payne, The Delfonics and The Dramatics. As a result, she helped with background vocals for most of them.
“I’ve been a producer for 25 years,” Angel pointed out. “I play a little piano, but my instrument is my vocals. People tell me my writing is impeccable.”
Aside from rapper Wae and Angel, the AEE imprint has also singed her daughter R&B singer/songwriter Shardella Sessions. She is working on her debut EP and is currently promoting its first single “Everything.”
“We are using an independent distributor…looking for major distribution, but doing it independently right now,” Sessions said about her label.
Her vocals were used on the Mary Wilson tour where she served as a “Supreme.” That was in 2004. That following year she released her first Gospel album titled “He Loves You” via CD Baby. She was asked to perform with Fred Hammond at the San Diego State Fair in 2007. That same year she opened for Carl Thomas. Angel also helped Maurice White (Earth, Wind & Fire) with her vocals on The Stylistics 2010 project “Painted in the Sky.”
When I complimented her on the quality of her photos and makeup in the publicity photos of her and her daughter, she said, “I do my own make-up. My daughter does her own make-up….the photographer is Anthony Guidry.”
I am sure she has many other skills she may have picked up while working in the music business. Her experiences include her 2014 release of the “Hearts of Broken Love” album and its single “Get Up,” which reached #1 on the National US Chart. It stayed there for 11 weeks. For this project she was nominated for an Underground Music Award. In 2015 she released another Gospel album titled “Songs of Comfort,” which became a bestseller in the genres of Soul, Praise & Worship and Contemporary Christian. Her 2019 single release “I’ll Wait for You” on her “Joy” album received one million streams on SoundCloud – giving it platinum status. In 2020 she released the single “Let’s Wait a While” and it earned her a President’s Choice Award from Soul Café Radio. It also accumulated one million streams on SoundCloud and Spotify, giving her another platinum selling song. Her “Ready to Rock” single received six million streams on SoundCloud making that single a multi-platinum seller.
“I found out later that the industry was hard,” Angel concluded when I mentioned how heartless the music industry can be. “I stayed because I had a passion for it as a little girl…when I first heard Mariah Carey and Whitney Houston. They motivated me to want to push.” www.AtlasEliteEntertainment.com www.AngelSessions.com
SYNDICATED COLUMN: Eunice Moseley, MS, MBA, MPhil has an estimated weekly readership of over ¼ million with The Pulse of Entertainment. She is also a Public Relations Strategist and Business Management Consultant at Freelance Associates, and is Promotions Director (at-large) for The Baltimore Times. www.ThePulseofEntertainment.com. EVENTS: “Uplifting Minds II” Entertainment Conference (ULMII), founded by Eunice in 1999, is into its 22nd year. Next events are coming to Baltimore Saturday April 17, 2021 at Security Square Mall via Zoom Conferencing and Los Angeles Saturday, November 6, 2021 via Zoom Video Conferencing. The ULMII event is a free entertainment conference offering a Business Management Panel Q&A Session, a Talent Showcase and Talent Competition (vocal, songwriting, dance and acting) where aspiring artists have a chance to receive over $15,000 valued in prizes/product/services. Log onto www.UpliftingMinds2.com for more information or to RSVP for Zoom Access email info@ThePulseofEntertainment.com.