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The Music Specialist Speaks

Music Specialist

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Welcome to The Music Specialist Speaks


Since CHANGE is in the air and the catch word for this season, I want to take at least one or two newsletters to discuss some changes I have witnessed.
President elect OBAMA has campaigned on CHANGE for the United States.  Change has come however, to the world and the main areas of change are PEACE & EDUCATION.
This issue of The Music Specialist Speaks will look at these two areas of world change.



In March of 1994 I went online with my first website.  Even though my business was devoted to the music industry I choose ASHA, the name of my youngest daughter, as my URL.

My first website was created to be a place for the world to learn about the music I appreciated so much.  R&B acts, jazz and blues acts were some of the first people I wanted to have represented. Timmy Thomas, M.R. William T, China Valles, Eve Cornelius, Jeff Majors and Dick Gregory ALL had their first web presence at the MUSIC SPECIALIST.

This first website was the number seven listing under music at Yahoo.com, made when the creators of Yahoo were still in their college dorms developing the concept.

In 1995 Music Specialist World Wide Web site rated “Top 5% of all sites on the Internet” by Point Survey.

2008 has seen the launch of the newest version of the MUSIC SPECIALIST.

The new version was created to be a place for the world to learn about the music I appreciate so much.   As I grow older and hear more music I find I am growing my site into a resource for the world community.  Education is the hammer and truth is the nail, young minds will be the board to build upon.

I am offering all of my readers FREE posting on my site directory, just send your name, email, office phone and a brief description of your service.
I am looking for historical photos of radio announcers, radio stations, studios, artists, events or anything you can think of.  Send them digitally to me, or send me physical copies and I will digitize them and return your photos.  I know there are REAL historical finds available and history needs to be preserved.
Create a profile at the BLOG and tell us your story, or A story.


Allen Johnston


Kerchoonz Scraps Artist Fees


KERCHOONZ.COM – the groundbreaking new website, swamped by over 8 million hits and 80,000 unique visitors in November, is scrapping its £12.50 ($20 USD) fee to mark the start of Kerchoonz Live – a month long competition to find the hardest working unsigned acts on the circuit.

Bands and artists have until the end of December to use Kerchoonz.com to promote themselves and earn money in a bid to bag a recording session at a famous Glasgow studio. As well as being able to record three tracks at the hands of top producer Ian Morrow (Wet Wet Wet, Rod Stewart, Seal), acts will get to keep all money earned from plays and downloads on Kerchoonz.com.

“I can imagine it’s going to be huge and why not?” says former Stereophonics star Stuart Cable. “Becoming a professional musician in a band is the hardest job in the world – so to do it this way is great.”

The social media platform lets registered artists and songwriters share their music and videos with fans while getting paid for every stream and download through a combination of the ISRC and play counts by utilizing unique coding and encryption within the application. Kerchoonz pays unsigned acts half a penny for every play and up to 10p for every download – by far the largest payments available to any act choosing to give away their music online.

Artists can even earn money by recommending other musicians to the site and, with no limit on the number of people you can recommend, it’s the hardest working acts that will reap the greatest rewards.

“Kerchoonz.com takes the world of online music to a completely different dimension by allowing musicians to earn money from their work without being exploited” says Co-Founder, Indiana Gregg.

Kerchoonz.com is currently locked in talks with both independent and major record labels to bring further content to the site, providing a comprehensive music catalogue for fans.

“If bands and artists use the promotional tools we provide for them, Kerchoonz.com will act just like a record company. Artists can effectively ‘sell’ their music without charging their fans anything for it,” says Gregg.

Kerchoonz is a place where musicians, artists, film makers, fans, business people, and technologists can meet and exchange in a free and open environment. Our mission is to provide a social platform that enables all of us to explore and create, listen and be heard, give. receive, and discover. Kerchoonz was founded by musicians who believe that artists and musicians should be encouraged and also compensated for their work.



Jack Rapping

As I was reading different news sites on the Internet the other day it dawned on me just how powerful Clear Channel and CBS radio stations truly are.  Not only are they the largest chain of stations within the United States but they have collectively taken over Internet radio broadcasting worldwide.  Let me be a little more precise.

Yahoo’s LAUNCHCAST Radio draws 3 million monthly unique visitors, allowing users to listen to music based on preferred genres and artists. But LAUNCHCAST Radio is limited only to Windows users on Internet Explorer, shutting out a large percentage of the Internet.  Now Yahoo will hand over the reinsof its webcasting pioneer property LAUNCHCAST Radio to CBSRadio next year, the reason, according to Yahoo Music chief Michael Spiegelman: ROYALTIES

Last year, a panel of federal copyright judges issued a ruling dramatically increasing the royalties paid by webcasters to music companies and songwriters. Yahoo, AOL, Pandora and Real Networks are fighting to reverse it. But unless they can get support from Congress, digital radio providers may be forced to pay annual royalty hikes of nearly 30%.

Beginning in February, CBS Radio will stream the 150 Yahoo Internet radio channels alongside its own combination of the 150 online simulcasts of its AM and FM properties and the over 200 AOL Radio channels the broadcaster took over in June. CBS Radio sales teams will also now handle all ad sales for Yahoo streams. Yahoo will still program the LAUNCHCAST Radio streams. The deal will also put links to CBS major-market news and sports stations streams on appropriate Yahoo pages. The CBS player works with the Firefox and Safari Web browsers giving LAUNCHCAST Radio the ability to reach 90% of the Internet.

Clear Channel has 776 streaming radio stations as of this writing and that includes multiple formats of Alternative, Adult Alternative, Adult Hits, Christian, Classic Hits, Classic Rock, Country, Hip Hop/R&B, Jazz, Latin, News Talk, R&B, Rock, Sports and more.  In addition Clear Channel has streaming radio channels in Australia, New Zealand and Mexico.  An outdoor advertising arm that offers Billboards, Digital Outdoor Networks, Times Square Spectaculars, Street Furniture, Airport Displays, Mall Displays, Taxi Advertising, Mass Transit Displays and a massive sales infrastructure.

Now there is nothing that will be able to stop either CBS Radio or Clear Channel from streaming their radio stations into every home in the WORLD with broadband access, And since so many commercial stations have reduced or abandoned their unique, local and regional “talk” content in favor of cheaper-to-produce music programming, they will all soon be vulnerable to competition from well staffed U.S. media companies as Internet-delivered radio gains dominance.

What is even more incredible is that the new smartphones have applications that will allow direct access to Internet radio streams on your cellphone.  Fly Cast is now offering two new free services that give broadcasters and webcasters “Smartphone” applications branded exclusively for their stations or networks.  Fly Cast Direct Link, is a smartphone application, branded for and linking to a single station stream. Custom Cast, is designed for broadcasters that offer more than one streaming channel, or multi-channel webcasters. It’s a branded Fly Cast channel guide, downloadable to smartphones like the Apple iPhone, with listen links for the multiple listening options from a single broadcaster or webcaster.

Apple iPhone   Apple iPhone

HTC Touch Pro for Verizon

Sprint Touch Pro

Sony Ericsson Xperia

AT&T Tilt AT&T Tilt

LG Incite   LG Incite

Samsung Omnia  Samsung Omnia

BlackBerry Storm BlackBerry Storm

These are ALL smartphones and there are hundreds of mid priced “knockoffs” and smaller company created smartphones around the world.

Now is the time to create your niche market. Anything that you have a passion for, someone else wants to know about it in DETAIL.  Developing a unique, professional sounding webcast with regularity will give you the product you need to shop.  Buyers will include radio stations, networks, ad agencies (they are always looking for a new way to capture an audience), mobile cellphone companies, other webcasters and direct to the public.  The more advanced people should look at taking the exact radio station model now available and direct broadcast to the Internet.  The companies that own their own studio, writers, technical people, ancillary rights, and product and develop their audience via the Internet will be the most lucrative.

A final thought – Smartphones broadcast streaming video also.

CHIQ DIVA – PPR 101 chiq diva

As we gear up for 2009, plans are in action to help you continue to expand your buzz around the country.  The next PPR 101 seminar will be presented in Memphis Tennessee Saturday Jan 31, 2009 at The Premiere Palace located 629 Monroe St downtown.  For this event,Chiq is partnering with the Grammy Recording Academy and will be able to offer serious artists a Grammy Academy membership that may even allow them to vote for nominated artists as well as attend the illustrious affair.  Chiq is also partnering with the Memphis Music Commission and the Memphis Music Foundation.
Chiq Diva has also teamed up with Senior A & R Max Gousse who is most recently noted for his work at Music world Entertainment owned by famed manager Matthew Knowles, on the multi platinum B day album by Beyonce and the number one album, Sasha Fierce.  Gousse will be scouting talent for not only Matthew Knowles’ Music World Record label, but for all of the top record labels in New York and Los Angeles.  PPR 101 – just might land you that major label deal that you have been working towards
Of course Chiq’s stellar list of participating editors and television casting directors will be on hand to ensure that PPR 101 – Memphis, the first and only public relations seminar for the aspiring entertainer, continues to offer the education and insight to assist with achieving and maintaining a national buzz.  Panelists expected in Memphis include BET’s Pat Charles, MTV’s Shaheem Reid, MTV’s Rahman Dukes, The Music Specialist Allen Johnston, Wordonthestreet.com’s Isis Wisdom Divine, Grammy Award winning producer and former Memphis Music Commissioner Ralph Sutton, Grammy award winning producer and President of the Memphis chapter of the Grammys Al Kapone ( Hustle & Flow) , Celebrity Publicist ChiQ Simms, Allhiphop.com’s Tai St Louis and many more.  And of course, each paid registrant will receive a complimentary copy of Recipe For Success..How To Make  A Million Dollars off of one record by Houston Hip Hop Pioneer Lil Troy, the first artist to make a million dollars off of a single – ” Wanna Be A Baller”.




In the words of Ms. Nancy Wilson, “The first time I heard Charito, I physically and emotionally embraced her and thought myself BEAUTIFUL, that came from the heart and the soul. She has a warm way of presenting a song and she represents what a singer really is, a song stylist.”
Recognized as one of the most individual and creative jazz vocalists in today’s Japan jazz circuit. Acclaimed by critics, musicians and audiences as one of the most powerful and talented artists, she has definitely notched a place for herself in Japan’s exclusive music world, and is now gaining note abroad. She has ten albums released with most recordings done in US, Canada and Brazil.

A rare, history making collaboration with Michel Legrand, Charito’s “Watch What Happens”, succeeds in capturing the essence of the great maestro’s timeless pieces. A mix of strong melodies and provocative arrangements, this album contains interpretations of famous movie themes, “Umbrellas of Cherbourg” “Windmills of Your Mind” and “Summer of ’42.” Particularly impressive are Charito and Michel’s vocal duet numbers Pieces of Dreams and Quaind On S’aime




MsMonique Santa


Denominator Graphics
In This Issue
Wanda Ramos


I have gotten so tired of entertainment industry people telling me how intelligent they speak at conferences and why they should be on a panel.  When ALL they want to do is sell their services to the unsuspecting public.  Panels today are mainly “ego driven” events that do not educate nor enlighten the attendee.  Most conferences that I have seen have no intention of really creating a learning environment where the attendee can get assistance, direct contact and come away with something concrete other than a business card that they only use once.  Having real education means getting ideas, interactions, and assistance for your particular problem or goal.  It does not mean just sitting in a room while speakers tell you their personal likes and dislikes in this industry.
Panel speaking
Janet Jackson once created a song that I have been thinking about recently.

“What have you done for me lately?”

How many conferences do you have to go to?  How many showcases do you enter? How many publications do you chase for interviews / photos?  How many mix tapes will you get on?  And to what end?

When did you hear of ANYBODY getting a record deal from a mix tape?

What artists do you know that got a major label deal, or even advanced their career from being written up in a local, regional or pseudo national magazine?

How many record pools do you visit and PAY to get your music heard and when do you receive a record deal or a series of shows?

What conference have you gone to and more than one act got any type of deal?

While you are still thinking about those questions, don’t get negative.  Believe that there are a few individuals that really get concerned in your career and have created avenues to educate you.

Chiq Diva has changed the complexion of the CONFERENCE GAME.

Chiq Diva has created PROFESSIONAL PUBLIC RELATIONS 101 CONFERENCE (PPR 101) a one day conference designed to educate, enlighten and empower tomorrow’s urban trendsetters on increasing exposure and visibility via mass media. Attendees learn from top entertainment journalists, editors, critics, publicists, marketers and television show hosts
Chiq with Vivid
PPR 101 offers not only a wealth of information and national media contacts, but is a results-oriented event that offers the opportunity to be featured on the ONLY nationally televised performance showcase for independent artists – BET’s 106 & Park WILD OUT WEDNESDAY segment.

Chiq Diva has verifiable results from each one of her PPR 101 events.

The ATL winner was Troyman

Da Fam game, Fijayh and Michael Carlione were the showcase winners and the next to represent New Orleans on bet’s 106 & Park Wild Out Wednesday!
Chiq with K 104 Dallas DJ Kaotic

In Dallas Brittany Star won a slot on 106 & Park, plus won a video shoot in a showcase created by Twista.  Blue Flava, a Dallas duo, won a slot on 106 & Park. As did 16 year old Yung Chase, and smooth Just One.  Singer songwriter, poet, producer, rapper Nicolay will be on stage in New York December 29.
Chiq with BET's PC
Chiq Diva ‘s PPR 101 was a perfect match for BET’s PC.  Mr. Pat Charles aka PC, senior writer for BET, has elevated tens of thousands of careers each week with Freestyle Friday and Wild Out Wednesday, his soon to be televised showcase Blaze the Stage, will open many more doors for independent artists.

Chiq Diva is a tireless worker that moves with a passion for her clients.  Her concept of what attendees should receive from every one of her PPR 101 events has set the stage for excellence and professionalism.

Join Chiq Diva and all the PPR showcase winners and former Wild Out Wednesday contestants including Chris De Shield, Dec 29 2008 in New York for Blaze the Stage and a rocking New Year’s Eve in Times Square.

Join Our Mailing List


Jus` Blues Music Foundation, Inc. inaugural “Christmas Blues Gala,” held Friday, December 5t, Downtown Atlanta, was a huge success!

Performances by International recording artist, Prince of the Blues, Lucky Peterson, “the 1st Lady of Blues & Soul” Trudy Lynn, “The Blues Man Lover” Theodis Easley, “The Empress Of The Blues” Ms. Sandra Hall, and The City Heat Band Featuring Darren & Tabitha King, made it a night to be remembered.


The Board of Directors of the Jus` Blues Music Foundation held its National meeting in Atlanta December 4th, 5th & 6th for the creation of the upcoming 2009 and 2010 initiatives and organization events.


Jus` Blues Music Foundation, Inc. encourages your financial and in-kind support to further promote as well as educate young people through the “Jus` Blues In The School” music program designed to share the importance of keeping the tradition of this great American art form alive. Today you can go to our web site to join or make a tax-deductible donation at: www.jusbluesmusicfoundation.org


For additional information and media contact:

Jus` Blues Music Foundation, Inc.
Post Office Box 44771
Atlanta, Georgia 30336
(678) 403-1993

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Wanda Ramos

Black Radio Queen

Wanda Ramos

Wanda RamosMy first radio job was WBLS-FM in New York City around 1970. The station was then located at 801 Second Avenue and 43rd Street.  At that time they were owned by Judick Broadcasting, a family owned business father son. FM radio technology was developing creating a full sound of music recordings. Black radio was becoming a successfull format in other major markets. Judick sold their AM and hired Frankie Crocker to program the powerfull FM now WBLS.  The line up was Ken Webb in the mornings, Vy Higginsen middays, Frankie Crocker prime time of 4:00 to 8:00 PM and Al Roberts overnights.  Frankie hired me as the “Music Librarian”.  My desk sat in a corner, not much but a desk with a manual typewriter.
Wanda Ramos As you can see in this picture, it was lined with steel racks filled
with vinyl.  My job was to organize and file the music, create the playlist (type it), research the songs and gather the new music.
Wanda Ramos
In 1979 Wanda did an interview on programming Disco Radio.

Allen Johnston
The Music Specialist


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