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Powerhouse Radio Newsletter
Platinum: The Television Show, Hip-hop Armageddon?
April 23, 2003

This issue includes...

1) Platinum: The Television Show, Hip-hop Armageddon?
2) Platinum Albums: What are they?
3) Rhythm, Love, and Soul on PBS
4) Music News: Luther, Nina, Little Eva, Chaka
5) Concert Dates
6) Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood: Salute to Mothers
7) Powerhouse Radio Screen Saver
8) Another Patti Labelle Contest
9) Your Feedback

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1) Platinum: The Television Show, Hip-hop Armageddon?

Platinum, the new UPN television series, has all the ingredients of being a run-away hit. I've seen two episodes, "Flow," and "Loyalty."

A brief background. Platinum, centered in New York City, tells the story of two brothers, Jackson and Grady Rhames. They are running a multi-million dollar record company, Sweetback Entertainment.

If you look deeper than the hip hop culture that this series portrays, the show is really about the pressures of building a successful business, the character of the people involved in the entertainment business, and the way career responsibilities impact on family, friends, and associates.

As someone who's worked professionally in radio for a long time, I can tell you that there are many elements of Platinum that are very realistic. Yeah, there are some very sleazy characters who are involved in all levels of the record business.

These folks aren't choir boys and girls, so get ready for a real slice of gangsta thug life.

Platinum is a good reflection of the culture of greed, consumption, and getting ahead at any cost. Yes, there are a lot of stereotypes in this television show. Remember, this is TV. TV is primarily entertainment. Hip hop culture is just the vehicle used to package and frame the program.

Platinum is a drama, but the show has a subtle sense of humor about it you may enjoy.

Francis Ford Coppola is Executive Producer. A who's who of the hip-hop world appear each week as guest stars playing fictional music artists.

Many R&B artists are also being featured in acting roles. Brian McKnight will guest star on the May 6th episode.

The cast includes:

Sticky Fingaz - Grady Rhames
Jason Winston George - Jackson Rhames
Lalanya Masters - Monica Rhames
Steven Pasquale - David Ross
Davetta Sherwood - Jade Rhames

Platinum airs on UPN each week, and is repeated on MTV the following week. Check it out.

Review written by King

Have you seen the show? Do you like it? Tell us...

Your feedback

2) Platinum Albums: What are they?

The Recording Industry Association of America, (RIAA), certifies gold and platinum music sales (based on units sold, not dollars).

A gold album requires 500,000 units to be sold, platinum albums require one million units. Singles are measured the same way.

Johnnie Taylor's 1976 "Disco Lady" was the first platinum single (selling over 2 million copies).

In 1998, the RIAA added a new "Diamond Award" for album sales of over 10 million units. Only 58 artists have achieved this greatness.

Michael Jackson has one for Thriller, Garth Brooks and Led Zeppelin have four each.

The Diamond Award heavyweight champs: The Beatles. They have five albums selling over 10 million units a piece.

Check out Powerhouse Radio's FabFourSoul to hear one of the largest and most unique collections of R&B/soul/jazz/classical versions of Beatles songs ever put together.

Listen now

The links are on the lower half of the listen.html page.

3) Rhythm, Love, and Soul on PBS

Lou Rawls and Aretha Franklin were in the fantastic PBS special "Rhythm, Love, and Soul."

While millions watch amateur singers trying to sing R&B classics on "American Idol," this show featured the real thing with Thelma Houston, The Spinners, The Temptations, Gloria Gaynor, Freda Payne, Mary Wilson, and more.

Watch for it as it will definitely be repeated in the coming months.

4) Music News: Luther Vandross, Nina Simone, Little Eva, Chaka Khan

Luther Vandross

Carmen Romano, Luther's business manager, reports that Mr. Vandross is recovering from his recent stroke. Luther turned 52 on April 20th.

Although in recent good health, Luther's past excess weight led to diabetes and hypertension (which he's recently had under control thanks to diet and exercise).

His new album is still scheduled for a June release. It's called "Dance With My Father," and features guest appearances from Stevie Wonder, Foxy Brown, Queen Latifah, Beyonce Knowles, and Busta Rhymes.


Nina Simone

The world has lost Nina Simone, a Jazz and Soul Legend, famous for her civil rights songs, and gutsy interpretations of gospel, ballads, and George Gershwin.

Simone past away at her home in the south of France at age 70.

She studied piano at New York's prestigious Julliard School of Music, a rare opportunity for a black woman in the 1950's.

To hear Nina Simone sing "I Want A Little Sugar In My Bowl," click this link:

Powerhouse Radio archive


Little Eva

Little Eva, who made "The Locomotion" a number one hit in 1962, passed away on April 10th. She stumbled into fame while still a teenager, babysitting for Carole King and Gerry Goffin.

King asked her to sing a demo of the future hit single, and the rest, as they say, is history.

To hear Little Eva sing "The Locomotion," click this link:

Powerhouse Radio archive


Chaka Khan

Chaka Khan was justly rewarded for her 8th Grammy Award earning best 2003 R&B Traditional Vocal Performance.

She teamed up with Motown's Funk Brothers to create her unique stamp on the classic "What's Going On."

Do you know how many versions of "What's Going On" are included in the Powerhouse Radio master playlist?

Hint. Just go to:

Powerhouse Radio playlist

Enter "what's going on" (without the quotes) in the search box, and click on the flashlight.

5) Concert Dates

Saturday, May 3, 2003
Morris FX Jeff Auditorium , New Orleans, LA

50 Cent
Friday, May 16, 2003
House of Blues in Mandalay Bay, Las Vegas, NV

VH1 Divas Duets
Queen Latifah, Whitney Houston, Celine Dion & others
Thursday, May 22, 2003
Grand Garden Arena in MGM Grand, Las Vegas, NV

Kirk Franklin
Saturday, May 24, 2003
Palladium at Carowinds , Charlotte, NC

Earth Wind & Fire
Monday, May 26, 2003
Chastain Park Amphitheatre, Atlanta, GA

Harry Belafonte
Tuesday, May 27, 2003
Massey Hall, Toronto, ON

Jerry Butler, Ben E. King, Lloyd Price, Gene Chandler
Saturday, June 14, 2003
Westbury Music Fair, Westbury, NY

Aretha Franklin (farewell tour)
Tuesday, June 17, 2003
FleetBoston Pavilion, Boston, MA

Santana and Angelique Kidjo
Wednesday, June 18, 2003
PNC Bank Arts Center, Holmdel, NJ

Al Green
Wednesday, June 25, 2003
Greek Theatre, Los Angeles, CA

George Benson
Monday, July 7, 2003
The Olympia, Paris, France

Hall & Oates
Tuesday, July 8, 2003
House of Blues, North Myrtle Beach, SC

6) Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood: Mother's Day, May 11

Courtesy of The Archive of Misheard Lyrics at amiright.com

Sly & The Family Stone's, "Family Affair"
Misheard Lyrics:
"Mom's love is the Volta Dam."
Correct Lyrics:
"Mom loves the both of them."

Chuck Berry's, "Roll Over Beethoven"
Misheard Lyrics:
"I'm gonna write a little letter,
gonna mail it to my mother in jail."
Correct Lyrics:
"I'm gonna write a little letter,
gonna mail it to my local dj."

5th Dimension's, "Wedding Bell Blues"
Misheard Lyrics:
"Mother, may I meet Bill?"
Correct Lyrics:
"Won't you marry me, Bill?"

Donny Hathaway's, "And Then There's Maude
(Maude's Theme)"
Misheard Lyrics: "And her mother was the first Brau Burna"
Correct Lyrics:
"Isadora was the first bra burner"

7) Powerhouse Radio Screen Saver

We've wanted to do this for two years. Now it's here. The official Powerhouse Radio Screensaver. What makes it unique?

Photos from vintage 45 rpm picture sleeves. Yes, we still have a large number of these collectibles. A few CD single picture sleeves are also included.

Look for real copies of legendary record labels too.

you can download it for free right now from:

Powerhouse Radio screensaver

The file size is 4.6 Megabytes. It should take about 20 minutes to download at 56k.

This is our classic R&B/soul edition for the Windows operating system.

8) Another Patti Labelle Contest

Patti's been back in the kitchen. Coming in May, we'll be giving away copies of her new book:

Patti Labelle's Lite Cuisine

9) Tell Us What You Think

We would love to hear what you think of this issue of the
Powerhouse Radio Newsletter.

Use our feedback form

Copyright 2003 by Powerhouse Radio
All rights reserved
Powerhouse Radio

Legendary R&B stars and their friends
More music on your computer from 5 decades

More 2003 Powerhouse Radio Newsletters:
August - A Stamp for Marvin Gaye
July - Luther Vandross Is #1
June - Earth Wind and Fire, The Promise
February - Cash Money for You from the Record Companies

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