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Black Music Month: Icons in Music

"Icons in Music" is the first series produced for MUMFF digital platforms to highlight history-makers during Black Music Month and beyond. Sponsored by LMG Entertainment, the parent company of MUMFF, "Icons in Music" recognizes June as Black Music month and will highlight history-makers from the past, and the present; from country to gospel, jazz to hip hop, Reggae to R&B and everything in between. Let's start with our 3 Icons, a diverse group of superstars from the past and the present. Enjoy!

Jay-Z: Hip Hop Music

Jay-Z is a living legend in the world of Music and entertainment. He is a prime example of a rags to riches story and it's an American story. He is the first rap artist to become a billionaire. His empire and acquisotions incude liquor, art, real estate and film production and of course miusc. Jay-Z has won 24 grammys, the most of any rapper, along with Kanye West. He holds the record for the most #1 albums for a solo artist on the Billlboard 200 (14). Yet, there are those who say his greatest accomplishment was marrying Beyonce'. He is the first of the MUMFF Hall of Fame. (awards date to be announced). (born December 4th, 1969)

Ella Fitzgerald: Jazz Music

Ella Fitzgerald is a once in a lifetime musical jazz artist, whose career spanned over five decades and took her entraordinary talents around the word enchanting audiences far and wide. Her voice was a true instrument. As a vocalist, she whirlled her vocal patterns high and low, and skipped along chords, exuded melodic prowess, and imitated a range of instruments with glee. Her vocal command will stand the test of time. Known as the Queen of Jazz, she delivered pure tones, phrasing, timing, and artful improvisational skatting skills that blows your mind and delights your spirit. She recorded over 100 albums and was the 1st African American singer to receive a Grammy.

Charlie Pride: Country Music

Charlie Pride

Charlie Pride was a rare talent in Country Music. A singer, guitarist, and professional baseball player, his greatest musical success came in the early to mid-1970s. As an African American, he broke the color barrier in the country music industry with his 1960s and 1970s hits, particularly "Kiss an Angel Good Mornin'," released in 1971. Pride was the best-selling performer for RCA Records since Elvis Presley. Charley Pride was the first black member of the Grand Ole Opry since DeFord Bailey decades earlier; the first black artist to have a number one country record; and the first artist of any race to win the Country Music Association's male vocalist award two years in a row.

Chuck Berry: Rock and Roll

Chuck Berry

He is credited with creating Rock and Roll from the crucible of rhythm and blues, Chuck Berry combined snappy lyrics, unique guitar riffs, swinging rhythms, precise diction, eye-popping stage antics and the blues in his many best-selling single records and albums. Chuck Berry made the guitar a household name and elevated it to a stage partner and co-star. Playing it behind his head, he also choreographed the first great rock and roll stage moves featuring a guitar, moves that are copied to this day.

Today Black music artists and cross genre collaborations are fostering new sounds, vibes and growth opportunities for many who are open to stretching their boundaries. There are icons in the making amongst this new wave of talent and we can't wait to see what grounbreaking sounds and experiences they have in store for us.

Written by C.T. Craig & Annie Chullan



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