4th of July at Exposition Park
Platinum-selling South African singer/model/actress Lira has already conquered South Africa and much of Europe with her irresistible blend of R&B, Jazz and African styles. Like Sade before her, she is now set to conquer America with the release of her debut U.S. single “Feel Good” and her debut U.S. album release Rise Again, due out April 29 2014 on Shanachie Entertainment. The album’s first single, “Feel Good,” is a slinky, jazzy re-mix of one of her major South African hits, a perfect showcase for Lira’s soulful, melodious singing style. That unique style led Essence Magazine to name her as one of “Five Unique Artists To Change Music in 2012.” With her debut U.S. release and a US tour in the works, Lira is clearly poised for a major stateside breakthrough. Born in the midst of Apartheid, the stunning artist shares, “Music changed my world forever it was the companion and silent warrior that spoke for us when we were not able to.”
“Lira has all the ingredients to be a star in the U.S.,” says Shanachie General Manager Randall Grass. “She has a unique sound, a wonderful voice, model-quality looks and is already a popular artist, not only in Africa but in much of Europe as well, with a wide-ranging appeal to Jazz, R & B, World music and Pop audiences.”
Steven Russell Harts
(Lead Singer of TROOP) with Special Guests
In a musical career that has spanned over two decades, Steven Russell Harts started his professional musical journey as Steve Russell, one of the lead men for the 90′s platinum-selling group Troop. Steven has remained relevant and in demand from today’s music industry elite to budding new artist by creating and taking part in remarkable hit records such as Jordin Sparks’ Grammy nominated “No Air,” Chris Brown’s Grammy nominated “Take You Down,” and 2009 Grammy winner Jennifer Hudson’s debut CD titled “Jennifer Hudson”.
Troop released their debut single, “Mamacita”, from their self-titled debut album in 1988 that reached #2 on Billboard’s R&B charts. After the release of their debut album, Troop released “Attitude” in 1990, which included such hit songs as “Spread My Wings” and the Jackson 5 cover of “All I Do is Think of You”, which were both #1 on the Billboard R&B charts and remained in the top 10 on the charts for several weeks. At the height of Troop’s success, the group appeared in the 1991 urban classic film New Jack City harmonizing their rendition of the O’Jays, “For the Love of Money/Living for the City”. Following a stream of hits and an enormous fan base, Troop released “Deepa” in 1992 and remained consistent with yet another #1 single, “Sweet November”, on the Billboard R&B charts. Two more albums would follow… “A Lil Sumpin’ Sumpin’” in 1994 and “Mayday” in 1998 which both received rave reviews.
We are excited that he is blessing the 4th of July Fireworks Extravaganza stage!
Prepare to see and hear a lot of the young, beautiful, multi-‐ talented and far-‐from-‐ordinary Dominique Toney in the years to come. Her natural gifts and pro-‐honed skills in every facet of the performing arts have arrived at peak proficiency and are about to take flight on the wings of her debut album, A Love Like Ours, on which she wrote or co-‐wrote all but one of the 11 songs, sings, scats, plays keyboards, executive produced and handled vocal arrangements. Revealing her heart like an open book via this richly eclectic alternative soul-‐pop collection, divinely driven Dominique shares her heart-‐on-‐sleeve love story like a woman who has been prepping for this close-‐up all her life. Listeners and future fans are going to be all the better for it.
St Louis native, Lynne Fiddmont grew up in the close-knit community of Maplewood/Richmond Heights. Her early years consisted of school, hopscotch, Double Dutch, selling Girl Scout cookies and things every other little girl in Richmond Heights was doing. Hers is a life that took a turn that changed an ordinary life into what many would consider extraordinary. Besides an occasional Easter speech or Little Flower dance recital, Lynne’s early life was free of any big dreams as a performer. Her career goals ranged from being a hair stylist, a dancer, an engineer, an umpire, but not a singer. “I had no idea that I could sing.”
Her life was not void of music, in fact her family was known for music. Her aunts and uncles made up the popular gospel group, Doris Frazier and The Fiddmont Singers. Her cousin Leon Burke III is an accomplished conductor, and her brother Keith Fiddmont is a gifted jazz saxophonist. But Lynne has no recollection of consciously choosing a profession in music. “I DON’T REMEMBER BEING DRIVEN, BUT EVERYONE REMEMBERS ME THAT WAY.”
Besides touring with Stevie Wonder, Lynne has explored many musical ventures with artists such as Phil Collins, Whitney Houston, Babyface, Christian McBride, Queen Latifah, Stanley Clarke, Joe Zawinul, Barbara Streisand, B.B.King, Elton John, Nancy Wilson, Dave Brubeck, George Duke, Kenny Loggins, James Ingram, Patti Austin, Eric Benet, and many more.
Her recording career as an artist began in 1990 as part of a duo, Linsey, where she was the voice of the group on their Quiet Storm debut “Perfect Love”.
Her solo debut release, “Flow” in 2006 gained critical acclaim here and abroad, is still a favorite today. “Lady” is a ten-song tribute to Miss Billie Holiday. This much-anticipated release promises not to disappoint with such guest artist as George Duke, Christian McBride, Billy Childs, Kirk Whalum Gerald Albright and many others.
Smith was born in East Orange, New Jersey. Smith is well known for her starring as Mimi in Jonathan Larson’s Broadway production of Rent. She was also the poster girl for Rent, displayed on taxi cabs in NYC and posters across the country. Smith left the role of Mimi in the musical Rent on Broadway to record her album and expand her film career.
Antonique is now most famous for her role as Faith Evans in Notorious, based on the life of Evans’ late husband, rapper The Notorious B.I.G.. She received rave reviews. The L.A. Times called her “delicious in the role” and Rolling Stone Magazine said she was “terrific”. She was also praised by critics, including Jeffery Lyons who called her “one to watch”.
Antonique played CIA agent Sandra Burns in the action movie “Abduction” opposite Taylor Lautner and Alfred Molina. She will be in theaters in late 2012 in “Yelling To The Sky”, playing the starring role of Ola O’Hara, opposite Zoe Kravitz and Gabourey Sidibe.
Antonique had a featured role in the Golden Globe nominated “Across The Universe” and has also guest starred on numerous hit TV shows including Law & Order and HBO’s Bored To Death and the Sidney Lumet directed “100 Centre Street” on A&E.
Antonique was heralded as “an amazing actress with a great career ahead of her”, by the legendary Sidney Lumet who gave Antonique her first job. She played a teen drug addict.
Her fans have expressed interest in her playing the role of Elphaba in Wicked, though she does not plan on auditioning, she says.
She was also the voice of Virgin Mobile USA.
Lettrice Cathey Lawrence refers to herself as “a vocal coach-studio-songwriter-producer-musician for hire”, and her resume is extensive. She has performed as a solo and back-up singer for many major names in the music business, including Barbara Streisand, Devrik Williams, The Boys, L.A. Nash, Willy Forbes Jr, Michael Edwards, Double Impact, Blue ‘N Black, Leigh Genis, Paul Smith, Albert McNeil, Gary Gray, Anointed Notion, Fortress Entertainment Group, Herman Andrus, New Walk Entertainment, Producer, Paul Neil (Octane Productions), E Productions, Producer Christopher Jenkins, Jovonnie, James Earl, Dombrowski Entertainment, Genesoul Productions/Haskell Jackson, Rogert Sauders, Keith Rouster, Jadar and Red Ant Records. Her debut Listening Critique Party identified her as a promising singer-songwriter, and she has been a featured artist on “Spice of Life” gospel show, performed at the Aqua Lounge, sang at Fais Do Do’s, featured with South East Symphony under the direction Anthony Parnell and headlined at B.B. King’s Place. In the past, she has worked as a music director at her parents’ church, House of Prayer Global Ministries, and is a current member of One Foundation (Choral Group), Genesis, Dicotomy and the West LA Jazz Ensemble. Lettrice continues to perform at many church venues, readily allowing God to use her. Her album, “Hear me, Lord:The Collaborations” CD is available on ITunes, www.lettricelawrence.com and www.cdaby.com/lettricelawrence5. Follow her on twitter: LettriceL, www.lettricelawrence.com, www.cdbaby.com/lettricelawrence5 and www.facebook.com/lettricelawrence for more info. Coming soon new single and concert in the Spring!
Zeia was born in Los Angeles by way of Inglewood, California. Her grandparents raised her until the age of 15. Her grandfather was a Baptist preacher who instilled in Zeia at an early age the drive to utilize her musical talent. Zeia attributes her musical gift to God as well as her musical family roots.
Zeia states that Anita Baker, Patti Labelle, Teena Marie, old school R&B, smooth jazz, funk, gospel and blues all played an integral part in influencing her career. Her credits include hosting a teen talk show in junior high school; being a member of Crenshaw High School Elite Choir, studying and touring France and Jamaica with the choir under the direction and guidance of Iris Stevenson. In addition, she has performed in various talent shows, graduations and weddings. She has auditioned for American Idol, America’s Got Talent, Making the Band, the Pussy Cat Dolls and most recently The Voice. Zeia along with her backing band Nsession has performed at various local venues as well as numerous community events around the city. She was booked as a headlining act for the 2011 Annual Taste of Soul festival.
Zeia is currently continues to book private parties and various club events around Los Angeles and its surrounding counties. She also assists with background vocals for other local and recording artists.
After traveling a rough road from foster home to group home as a teen, she has emerged as a strong mother of three who is pursuing career goals in both music and the law. Now she is ready to take her musical ability and talent to the ultimate heights, sharing her experience and her faith while inspiring other young people to persevere and believe in their ability to reach their ultimate goals.
Arista Pemberton was born on September 1, 1984 in Alhambra California. Arista realized that she loved to dance at age 4. And she started singing at age 7. She would perform any and everywhere she could. She did many talent shows and performances. She loved to dance, sing, act, model, and write music.
When Arista was 16 years old she went to the studio to record her first song. After that, nothing could stop her. She started dancing on Soul Train. After that Arista started to record many songs. She realized that she had a good hand for writing her own music. It was just something easy for her to do. Her mother Trudy Pemberton would always take her to many auditions, even when she was sick. Arista was also on the television show called “Bones” and she auditioned for “American Idol”. Arista also had a part in the movie called “Lackawanna Blues”. She also love to teach dance.
When Arista was a young child she realized she was different from most kids. She accepted Christ into her life at an early age. She love to worship God. Arista realized that she wanted to do Gospel music. She wants her Gospel music played on all radio stations. She wants to be different from most people, and she is. She is definitely unique. Arista contiues to sing and will never stop until she reaches the top. One of her favorite saying is ” It’s not about me but about God”.
This group started 3 years ago in artist development not only to become a dynamic group but also to become great role models in our community. Their message to the youth is to put God first, education second and success will follow. Their goal is to bless millions of people with their God gifted talent. God blessed High Definition to perform with the school tour, and also they open up for the group Dru Hill, H Town, Rome, the legendary Spinners, Lakeside, Tee-flii, and most recently on May 24th they open up for mindless behavior.