(LOS ANGELES)— The Singleton Entertainment Corp, led by former Urban Music President of MCA Records Ernie Singleton, is proud to announce that civil rights activist and media personality Rev. Al Sharpton will make a special presentation to the family of the late Jules “Julie” Rifkind for his legacy in Black music during its #Salute2014 tribute on Wednesday, June 25, 2014 at LA Live’s Target Terrace, located at 800 W. Olympic Blvd above the Grammy Museum in downtown Los Angeles. The event will be held from 6 to 10 p.m., and hosted by actor Vincent Ward, whose credits include “The Walking Dead,” “The Starter Wife” and “Everybody Hates Chris.”
A native of Brooklyn, Rifkind was the founder of Spring Records, created in the 1960s in New York City, and considered one of the most important soul labels during of the 1970s. As a Jewish man, repping Black artists during the Civil Rights Movement, Rifkin saw the inequalities of the Jim Crow laws and its effect on his business. Back then, he was so impressed with a young preacher, named Al Sharpton, that he gave him an office at his record label. Together, Rifkind and Sharpton would advocate for equal treatment of urban artists and music executives – both on and off the road. Today, Sharpton is the founder of the National Action Network and host of the nightly show, “Politics Nation” on MSNBC as well as the nationally-syndicated radio show, “Keeping It Real With Al Sharpton.” Sharpton is also the author of “The Rejected Stone: Al Sharpton and the Path to American Leadership.”
Rifkind began his career as head of radio promotion at MGM Records, a predominantly pop and country label. After another stint as general manager at BANG Records, a subsidiary of Atlantic Records, Rifkind decided to form his own record label -- Spring Records through Polygram -- with his older brother Roy and Bill Spitalsky. At Spring Records, Rifkind signed artists such as Joe Simon, Millie Jackson, James Brown and the Fatback Band. The record label also created a management division, repping entertainers and recording artists like comic genius Flip Wilson, the Shirelles and soul singer Tommy Hunt of the Flamingos. Interestingly, Rifkind gave Russell Simmons his first production deal when he signed Jimmy Spicer, who released the single “Dollar Dollar Bill Y’all.” Not surprising, he passed on his love of urban music to his sons, Steve and Jonathan Rifkind, partners of Loud Records with RCA.
In recognition of June as Black Music Month, Singleton Entertainment presents #Salute2014 to salute music and entertainment executives who work relentlessly behind the scenes, playing critical roles in the success of recording artists’ careers as well as the entire urban production landscape. For the past six years, Singleton Entertainment presented the Toast to Urban Executives; however, that event is now being produced by another organizer not affiliated with the Singleton Entertainment.
“As someone who’s worked behind the scenes, supporting some of the biggest stars in the music business, many times your hard work goes unnoticed,” says Singleton, president and CEO of Singleton Entertainment. “There is so much that goes into the success of an artist or production and most people only reference the finished product. I want to spotlight and celebrate these executives who make it all happen. Success would be impossible without their contributions.”
In addition to Rifkind, #Salute2014 will pay special tribute to the late Grammy Award winning singer/songwriter/composer Curtis Mayfield and online media executive Ron Bloom of BiteSized Entertainment.
Other #Salute2014 honorees include:
- Karen Civil – celebrity blogger of KarenCivil.com and online marketing coordinator for Young Money Records.
- Angela Dean – celebrity fashion designer and founder of DeanZign.
- Greg “Mack Attack” Mack – radio pioneer at KDAY-FM, and now disc jockey at KTWV-FM, 94.7 the Wave.
- Joie Manda – president of Urban Music at Interscope, Geffen, & A&M.
- Groovey Lew – celebrity stylist who’s known as the “King of Fashion” in the hip hop world.
FOR THE SOCIAL MEDIA RELEASE about the honorees, visit http://pitch.pe/1qqOblb
TO VIEW THE PROMO VIDEO BY ERNIE SINGLETON, visit https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Szyl9qdC6CA
#Salute2014 is the first of a string of productions planned by Singleton Entertainment, and marks a transformation in the company’s drive to preserve the heritage and value of black music in the urban entertainment landscape.
#Salute2014 will partner with ground breaking digital leaders, insuring that the event is on par with new technology platforms. The event will celebrate and salute executives who are leaders in digital and physical entertainment while recognizing and paying homage to the power and value of Black Music in America.
FOR THE SOCIAL MEDIA RELEASE about the rebranding of #Salute2014, visit: http://pitch.pe/1ugfH4d
For sponsorship opportunities or to learn more about the Singleton Entertainment, visit www.singletonentertainment.com. For media inquiries, please contact Reid Johnson at firstname.lastname@example.org or contact 310.560.1383.
About Ernie Singleton | Singleton Entertainment Corp.
Singleton is the former president of Urban Music at MCA Records. With 139 gold and platinum albums to his credit, Singleton is one of the top movers and shakers in the music industry! A creative genius, his talents have not only had a hand in the foundation of Black Music, but also, elevating it to even higher ground in America.
Throughout his career, he’s had a special knack for turning struggling record labels into formidable industry powerhouses. Under his watch, he took Ruthless Records -- an independent label owned by gansta rapper Eazy-E -- from $50,000 to $16 million in sales. He was also instrumental in improving Warner Bros. industry rankings from number 7 to the top spot of number 1 within three years of his arrival.
He’s been instrumental in launching the careers of many Grammy-winning artists, including Mary J. Blige, Bone Thugs-N-Harmony, New Edition, Jodeci, Teddy Riley, Al B. Sure, and Brooke Valentine – just to name a few. In addition, he’s helped to cultivate the careers of music icons like Sean “Diddy” Combs, Quincy Jones, Prince, Gladys Knight, Patti LaBelle, Miles Davis, Chaka Khan and Madonna.