Archive for January 2007

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January 23, 2007

ANGELIQUE KIDJO TO RELEASE "DJIN DJIN" MAY 1ST VIA RAZOR & TIE AND STARBUCKS ENTERTAINMENT; ALBUM FEATURES DUETS WITH JOSH GROBAN, ALICIA KEYS, PETER GABRIEL, JOSS STONE, CARLOS SANTANA AND MORE

KIDJO TAPPED AS SOLE SUPPORT FOR JOSH GROBAN ON
NORTH AMERICAN TOUR BEGINNING IN FEBRUARY

(New York, NY) - On May 1st, Razor & Tie and Starbucks Entertainment will co-release DJIN DJIN (pronounced "gin gin"), the new album by international music star and UNICEF goodwill ambassador Angelique Kidjo. Produced by the legendary Tony Visconti (David Bowie, Morrissey, T. Rex), DJIN DJIN finds the Benin-born Kidjo partnering with such luminaries as Josh Groban, Alicia Keys, Peter Gabriel, Carlos Santana, Joss Stone and Ziggy Marley to create an album which is truly global in scope. Other special guests on the album include Amadou and Mariam and Branford Marsalis. The CD will be available simultaneously at Starbucks Company-operated locations in the U.S. and Canada as well as traditional retail.

Razor & Tie Co-Owners Cliff Chenfeld and Craig Balsam stated, "We are thrilled to be joining forces with Starbucks to release the brilliant new album by Angelique Kidjo. Since they began their involvement with music, Starbucks has always been forward-thinking in introducing world-class talent to their patrons. The caliber of the guests on the album is a testament to Kidjo's talent, passion and ability to reach diverse audiences worldwide." "Angelique Kidjo is a treasure. Her remarkable music has captivated audiences around the world. We know she is someone our customers are going to love," said Ken Lombard president Starbucks Entertainment. "We are proud to team with Razor & Tie to co-release this extraordinary CD."

Inspired by the traditions and culture of Kidjo's native Benin in West Africa, the title of the album refers to the sound of the bell that greets the beginning of a new day for Africa. Similar to Kidjo's recent works, DJIN DJIN finds Angelique singing in her native languages as well as in English and French. As a child, Kidjo was mesmerized by an iconic album cover of Jimi Hendrix, which led her to follow the African roots of music from the United States, Brazil and the Carribean. The results were the Grammy-nominated trilogy of albums, OREMI, BLACK IVORY SOUL and OYAYA. On DJIN DJIN, Angelique returns to her Beninese roots, building an album around the most traditional rhythms from her country. With the help of accomplished West African musicians, she recorded DJIN DJIN at Jimi Hendrix's Electric Lady Studio in New York City.

Angelique's dream was to invite a group of musical friends to step into her world so that they could share the richness and beauty of her culture. Each of the guests holds a special place in Kidjo's heart not only for their incredible musicianship, but for their unique connections to Africa. Artists such as Peter Gabriel and Alicia Keys have been tireless in their charitable work for various African causes. Carlos Santana told Kidjo that his music has always been inspired by the music of Africa.

One of the album's stand-out tracks is a cover of Sade's moving "Pearls", a duet between Kidjo and Josh Groban that includes the signature guitar work of Carlos Santana. Groban was so impressed by Kidjo that he asked her to be the sole support for his entire upcoming North American tour. Of Kidjo, Groban stated, "I have been a fan of Angelique's for many years now. Her voice, her spirit, the way she connects is awe-inspiring and I'm so honored to have collaborated with her. She also has a wicked sense of humor and I am positive our time together on tour will be a blast." The trek kicks off on February 17th in Verona, NY at Turning Stone Events Center. The full itinerary is listed below.

Angelique Kidjo began performing in the Beninese port village of Cotonou. The political turmoil in her country led her to pursue her career in Paris, the capital of world music. There, Kidjo's striking voice and stage presence, and her fluency in multiple cultures and languages won her respect from her peers and expanded her following across national borders. It also earned her access to activists who sensed humanitarian passion in the words of her songs, resulting in her long-term dedication to global charity work.

Kidjo has traveled far, mesmerizing audiences on countless stages, speaking out on behalf of the children in her capacity as a UNICEF goodwill ambassador. Now with DJIN DJIN and the return to her musical roots, Kidjo has truly closed the circle in her life as she brings international artists to the musical world of her native country.


DJIN DJIN track listing:

1. Ae Ae
2. Djin Djin featuring Alicia Keys and Branford Marsalis
3. Gimme Shelter featuring Joss Stone
4. Salala featuring Peter Gabriel
5. Senamou featuring Amadou and Mariam
6. Pearls featuring Josh Groban and Carlos Santana
7. Sedjedo featuring Ziggy Marley
8. Papa
9. Arouna
10. Awan N'La
11. Emma
12. Mama Golo Papa
13. Lonlon (Ravel's Bolero)

Angelique Kidjo on tour supporting Josh Groban:

FEBRUARY

17 Verona, NY Turning Stone Events Center
18 Cleveland, OH Quicken Loans Arena
20 Grand Rapids, MI Van Andel Arena
21 Columbus, OH Nationwide Arena
23 Detroit, MI The Palace
24 Chicago, IL United Center
26 London, ON John Labatt Center
27 Ottawa, ON Scotiaplace


MARCH

1 Philadelphia, PA Wachovia Center
2 Boston, MA TD Banknorth Garden
4 Montreal, PQ Bell Centre
5 Toronto, ON Air Canada Center
7 Providence, RI Dunkin Donuts Center
8 Uncasville, CT Mohegan Sun
10 Rochester, NY Blue Cross Arena
12 New York, NY Madison Square Garden
13 Washington, DC Verizon Center
16 Raleigh, NC RBC Center
17 Atlanta, GA Phillips Arena
19 Dallas, TX American Airlines Arena
21 Houston, TX Toyota Center
22 San Antonio, TX AT & T Center
25 Phoenix, AZ US Airways Center
27 Sacramento, CA Arco Arena
28 San Jose, CA HP Pavillion
31 Los Angeles, CA Staples Center

APRIL

4 Fresno, CA Savemart Center
6 San Diego, CA I Pay One Center
7 Las Vegas, NV MGM Garden Arena


About Razor & Tie

New York-based Razor & Tie is one of the fastest growing independent entertainment companies in the United States. Razor & Tie successfully sells audio and video products through traditional retail distribution, direct response television advertising and e-commerce based websites. Founded by co-owners Cliff Chenfeld and Craig Balsam, Razor & Tie is a vertically-integrated company that encompasses a music company with major label distribution, a home video company, a media buying company, a music publishing business, an experienced marketing, promotion and sales team, a direct marketing operation and a growing database of entertainment consumers.

About Starbucks Coffee Company
Starbucks Coffee Company provides an uplifting experience that enriches people's lives one moment, one human being, one extraordinary cup of coffee at a time. To share in the experience, please visit www.starbucks.com.

CHILDREN'S MUSIC SUPERSTAR LAURIE BERKNER TO BE FOCUS OF HOUR-LONG PUBLIC TELEVISION PLEDGE EVENT SPECIAL

SHOW TO BEGIN AIRING NATIONALLY IN MARCH; "WE ARE...THE LAURIE BERKNER BAND" DVD CERTIFIED QUADRUPLE PLATINUM

(New York, NY) - Children's music superstar and NOGGIN mainstay Laurie Berkner will be the subject of an hour-long public television pledge event special to begin airing nationally in March. The program will premiere live on KQED in San Francisco on Sunday, February 11th and will then air throughout the country the following month. The pledge event special, produced and distributed by American Public Television (APT), will give The Laurie Berkner Band's videos their network television debut alongside interstitial interview segments with Berkner. Those who pledge their financial support to public television will receive as a gift The Laurie Berkner Bandís first-ever DVD, "We are . . . The Laurie Berkner Band" (Two Tomatoes Records/Razor & Tie Entertainment/Starbucks Hear Music) which features all of the music videos in their entirety. The chart-topping DVD has just been certified quadruple platinum.

Michael Krumper, Senior Vice President, Marketing for Razor & Tie commented, "We are thrilled that Laurie's videos will get to be seen alongside the quality programming that public television offers, and that this special will help generate additional income to help fund that programming." "Whenever you mention Laurie's name to a parent with young kids they just light up with enthusiasm," says Eric Luskin vice president of APT Premium Service. "APT is proud to bring Laurie's music to an audience that is eager to find inspiring, age-appropriate entertainment for their family. I wish she'd been around when my daughter was a youngster!"

A New York City-based mother, Laurie Berkner turned her experience as a preschool music specialist by day and rock singer by night into a career as one of the biggest names in children's music. Over the past several years, Laurie's intelligent yet accessible songwriting, warm, captivating vocals and ridiculously infectious melodies have garnered awards, rave reviews, a national touring base and huge CD sales. The Laurie Berkner Band became household names to the toddler set when they appeared on NOGGIN's hit preschool series Jack's Big Music Show in 2005. The show's second season just debuted in early January, 2007 and again features The Laurie Berkner Band in almost every episode.

The Laurie Berkner Band has performed on The Today Show, Good Morning America, Live With Regis & Kelly and most recently on The 80th Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade. The band has appeared in the pages of Time, "The New York Times", "The Wall Street Journal" and many other esteemed publications. The Laurie Berkner Band is: Laurie Berkner (vocals, guitar), Adam Bernstein (bass) and Susie Lampert (keyboards).

About American Public Television

For 45 years, American Public Television (APT) has been a prime source of programming for the nation's public television stations. APT distributes more than 300 new program titles per year and has 10,000 hours of programming in its library. It is responsible for many public television milestones including the first HD series and the 2006 launch of the Create channel featuring the best of public television's lifestyle programming. APT is known for its leadership in identifying innovative, worthwhile and viewer-friendly programming. It has established a tradition of providing public television stations with program choices that strengthen and customize their schedules such as JFK: Breaking the News, Battlefield Britain, Globe Trekker, Rick Steves' Europe, Great Museums, Jacques Pepin: Fast Food My Way, America's Test Kitchen From Cook's Illustrated, Broadway: The Golden Age, Lidia's Family Table, California Dreamin' - The Songs of The Mamas & the Papas, Rosemary and Thyme, P. Allen Smith's Garden Home, The Big Comfy Couch, Monarchy, and other prominent documentaries, dramatic series, how-to programs and classic movies. For more information about APT's programs and services, visit APTonline.org.

About Razor & Tie

New York-based Razor & Tie is one of the fastest growing independent entertainment companies in the United States. Razor & Tie successfully sells audio and video products through traditional retail distribution, direct response television advertising and e-commerce based websites. Founded by co-owners Cliff Chenfeld and Craig Balsam, Razor & Tie is a vertically-integrated company that encompasses a music company with major label distribution, a home video company, a media buying company, a music publishing business, an experienced marketing, promotion and sales team, a direct marketing operation and a growing database of entertainment consumers.

January 05, 2007

RAZOR & TIE TAKES IT TO THE RUNWAY: "THE JANICE DICKINSON MODELING AGENCY - SEASON ONE" TO BE RELEASED ON DVD JANUARY 30TH, 2007

(New York, NY) - On January 30th, 2007, Razor & Tie will release the entire first season of Oxygen's smash hit reality series "The Janice Dickinson Modeling Agency" on DVD. The double DVD set will not only feature the eleven-episode season, but also the one-hour season finale and bonus material, for a total of nearly 6 hours of content.

"The Janice Dickinson Modeling Agency" follows Dickinson's transformation from model to mogul as she starts her own Hollywood modeling agency by personally auditioning 500 aspiring models. Along the way, Dickinson must learn to balance her personal life with her professional one, juggling motherhood with her business' needs.

One of the modeling industry's first supermodels, the over-the-top Janice Dickinson recently reinvented herself as a television personality when she was featured in a recurring guest spot (five-seasons worth!) on Tyra Banks' hit reality series "America's Next Top Model". Her antics on the show led to a starring turn on the VH1 reality series "The Surreal Life", and then finally to her own series, "The Janice Dickinson Modeling Agency". On June 6th of this year, The Oxygen Network premiered the series to amazing response; it quickly became the network's #1 original series and its most successful series ever.

Known throughout the globe, Janice Dickinson is a model and photographer who has been featured on the covers of every major fashion magazine. She is also the author of three books: No Lifeguard On Duty, Everything About Me Is Fake...And I'm Perfect and Check, Please!: Dating, Mating, and Extricating. Season Two of "The Janice Dickinson Modeling Agency" will premiere on Oxygen in January, 2007.

"The Janice Dickinson Modeling Agency" is produced by Krasnow Productions and FremantleMedia North America for Oxygen and is licensed by Fremantle Home Entertainment (FHE). FHE is the home entertainment division of FremantleMedia, one of the leading international creators and producers of program brands in the world.

New York-based Razor & Tie is one of the fastest growing independent entertainment companies in the United States. Razor & Tie successfully sells audio and video products through traditional retail distribution, direct response television advertising and e-commerce based websites. Founded by co-owners Cliff Chenfeld and Craig Balsam, Razor & Tie is a vertically-integrated company that encompasses a music company with major label distribution, a home video company, a media buying company, a music publishing business, an experienced marketing, promotion and sales team, a direct marketing operation and a growing database of entertainment consumers.

Oxygen, the only cable network owned and operated by women, is currently available in over 70 million homes. The network was launched in 2000 to fill a void in the television landscape -- creating a network targeted to younger women. Oxygen is rewriting the rulebook for women's television, with vast array of unconventional and original programming including The Janice Dickinson Modeling Agency, The Bad Girls Club and Campus Ladies. Geraldine Laybourne, the network's founder, Chairman and CEO, has led the company to be a strong advocate for women. Through programs like The Mentor's Walk, Oxygen's national program for bringing along the next generation, and "Who Cares About Girls," Oxygen's new documentary series -- Oxygen is creating The New Girls Network.

FremantleMedia Enterprises (FME) is the commercial arm of FremantleMedia and comprises of Fremantle International Distribution (FID), FremantleMedia Licensing Worldwide (FLW) and Fremantle Home Entertainment (FHE).

FID has a network of international sales offices and licenses over 20,000 hours of programmes to 150 countries worldwide. FID's programming comes from in-house UK producer, talkback THAMES and from an increasing number of independent producers in the UK and internationally. Recent international successes include US ratings-toppers The Apprentice: Donald Trump and The Apprentice: Martha Stewart, hugely successful fashion reality series, Project Runway starring Heidi Klum, exquisite Brook Lapping production Catherine the Great and the music event special, Britney Spears: In the Zone.

FLW is the licensing division of FremantleMedia and exploits the company's many strong brands including the award winning international format, Idols and the cult children's classics, Rainbow and DangerMouse, across multiple off-screen platforms including merchandising campaigns, interactive and wireless support and music publishing. FHE is the home entertainment arm of FremantleMedia. FremantleMedia is the production business of the RTL Group, Europe's largest television and radio broadcast company. www.fremantlemedia.com

January 03, 2007

RAZOR & TIE PUBLISHING INKS SINGER/SONGWRITER ARI HEST, GUITAR VIRTUOSO/SONGWRITER TONY SCHERR AND RISING STAR YOUNG B TO EXCLUSIVE WORLDWIDE DEALS

(New York, NY) - Razor & Tie has added more esteemed artists to its rapidly-expanding publishing unit with the signings of Ari Hest, Tony Scherr and young b. Senior Vice President, Music Publishing J.W. Johnson commented, "I am happy to welcome these diverse songwriter/artists to the Razor & Tie family. Ari, Tony, and young b are all poised for break-out years in 2007".

Columbia recording artist and New York-native Ari Hest began his career as a singer/songwriter as an undergraduate at New York University. He spent his early years building his fan base by touring colleges and clubs across the country. Hest released three albums independently, selling over 20,000 CDs on his own. In 2004, he was signed to Columbia Records. His debut SOMEONE TO TELL was released to great critical and fan acclaim. Hest's second album for the label, produced by Mitchell Froom (Elvis Costello, Bonnie Raitt), is due out early this year.

One of the most in-demand session players in New York City, Tony Scherr has played an integral role in the music of such notable artists as Bill Frissell and Norah Jones. His debut album, COME AROUND, was released in 2002 on the Smells Like Records label. His songs appear on recent offerings from Feist and Frisell. Scherr is currently touring with the legendary Willie Nelson.

Young b is the rising star female rapper featured in the wildly-popular song/dance craze "Chicken Noodle Soup". Look for her solo release in 2007. Hest, Scherr and young b join such songwriters as Patterson Hood and Mike Cooley of Drive-By Truckers, Ernie Lake, Russ Titelman and James Maddock on the Razor & Tie Publishing roster.