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Andre Harrell

Producer and record executive Andre Harrell was born on September 26, 1960 in Harlem, New York. At the age of sixteen, Harrell and high school friend, Alonzo Brown, formed the hip hop duo, Dr. Jeckyll and Mr. Hyde; and in 1980, they signed with Tayster and Rojac Records in Harlem. They released several hit songs including “Genius Rap,” “Fast Life,” and “AM/PM” as well as the 1984 album, The Champagne of Rap. Harrell attended Lehman College, where he majored in communications and business management, but left after three years to work for a local news station, WINS.

In 1983, Harrell began working for Russell Simmons at RUSH Management. Within two years, he became the vice president and general manager of Def Jam Records, where he helped launch the careers of Run-DMC, LL Cool J, and Whodini. In 1986, Harrell founded his own record label, Uptown Records, where he worked with Heavy D. & The Boyz, Al B. Sure, Notorious B.I.G., Guy, Jodeci, McGruff, Sean Combs, Lost Boyz, and The Gyrlz. He also worked with Mary J. Blige, releasing her debut album, What’s the 411?, with Uptown in 1992. That same year, Harrell accepted a multimedia deal with MCA Music Entertainment Group. He was also the executive producer of Fox’s hit crime television show, New York Undercover, which aired from 1994 to 1998. Harrell was also the executive producer of several films, including Strictly Business in 1991, and Honey in 2003. Harrell became the chief executive officer of Motown Records in 1995, where he oversaw the careers of Stevie Wonder, Diana Ross, and Queen Latifah. Harrell also founded Nu Records, and served as an executive producer on Robin Thicke’s and Pharrell William’s 2013 hit song “Blurred Lines.” In 2013, Harrell became the vice chairman of Sean Combs’ multimedia company, Revolt TV Network. He played an instrumental role in launching the Revolt Music Conference in Miami, Florida, which was attended by Guy Oseary, Russell Simmons and L.A. Reid.

In 2009, Harrell received a Cultural Excellence Award from the National Action Network. He was also the recipient of BET’s Culture Creators Award in 2016.

Andre Harrell was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on February 23, 2018.

Accession Number

A2018.029

Sex

Male

Interview Date

2/28/2018

Last Name

Harrell

Maker Category
Occupation
Organizations
First Name

Andre

Birth City, State, Country

New York City

HM ID

HAR53

Favorite Season

Spring - May In New York

State

New York

Favorite Vacation Destination

St. Barts

Favorite Quote

Whatever

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

California

Birth Date

9/26/1960

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Los Angeles

Favorite Food

Chicken

Short Description

Producer and record executive Andre Harrell (1960 - ) founded Uptown Records, and served as the president and chief executive officer of Motown Records, and executive producer of New York Undercover before becoming the vice chairman of Revolt TV Network.

Favorite Color

Blue

Patricia Cosby

Music executive Patricia Cosby was born on February 9, 1944 to Willie Thompson and Meomi Seay Thompson. She graduated from Northwestern High School in Detroit, Michigan in 1961 and attended Detroit Business Institute.

In 1962, Cosby began working at Motown Records in Detroit, Michigan. She began working as a switchboard receptionist and was promoted to tape librarian under the supervision of Frances Heard Maclin, the first assistant in the tape library. Cosby later became an album coordinator. At Motown, Cosby met her husband, Hank Cosby. Her husband produced hits such as “The Tears of a Clown” and “My Cherie Amour.” In 1972, Cosby and her husband, moved to Los Angeles, California when the company relocated. In 1974, Cosby earned songwriting credits for two songs on the Blood, Sweat, & Tears album, Mirror Image. The songs are titled “Tell Me That I’m Wrong” and “Love Looks Good On You (You’re Candy Sweet),” with the album reaching 149 on the Billboard Pop Album chart. Cosby left Motown Records and in 1985, she secured a position with Embassy Pictures as a procurement coordinator, working under television producer Norman Lear. After two years at Embassy Pictures, she moved back to Detroit in 1987 and later worked for the health insurance company, Cigna in 1990. Cosby served as a contracting manager and retired from her position at Cigna in 2005.

In 2002, her husband, Hank Cosby, passed away, with over 300 mourners at his funeral, Stevie Wonder, Rance Allen and Jennifer Fouche sang at his funeral. In 2006, Hank Cosby was posthumously inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame. Cosby was also a member of the Motown Historical Museum and the Heroes and Legends Scholarship Foundation.

Patricia Cosby had two children with and her husband, Henry Cosby: Henry Cosby, Jr., and William Cosby. Her husband Henry Cosby, also had another son, Kevin Cosby, from a previous marriage.

Patricia Cosby was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on October 17, 2017.

Accession Number

A2017.185

Sex

Female

Interview Date

10/17/2017

Last Name

Cosby

Maker Category
Occupation
Organizations
Schools

Jefferson Intermediate School

Hancock Elementary School

High School of Commerce and Business Administration

Northwestern High School

Detroit Business Institute

First Name

Patricia

Birth City, State, Country

Detroit

HM ID

COS03

Favorite Season

Spring

State

Michigan

Favorite Vacation Destination

Las Vegas

Favorite Quote

If It Feels Good, Do It

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Michigan

Birth Date

2/9/1944

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Detroit

Favorite Food

Ice Cream

Short Description

Record executive Patricia Cosby (1944 - ) was a receptionist, tape librarian, and album coordinator for Motown Records Corporation and was married to Motown writer and producer Henry “Hank” Cosby.

Employment

Motown Records

Embassy Pictures

CIGNA Healthcare

Favorite Color

Yellow; Red

Michael Mauldin

Music and entertainment executive Michael Mauldin was born in Murphy, North Carolina in 1953. Mauldin began his musical career in the late 1960s and early 1970s when he started as a musician playing with the racially integrated band, the Other Side. After briefly attending DeVry Institute of Technology, Mauldin moved to Atlanta, Georgia where he married and had a son, Jermaine.

In 1975, Mauldin received his first break in the music industry when the funk band, Brick, needed a van to haul their equipment to a gig in North Atlanta. After helping Brick with his van, Mauldin was hired by them as their stage manager and later he became their production manager. In the mid-1970s, he began working tours which involved many R&B and Funk band acts such as: the Bar Kays, LTD and others. Through this work, Mauldin decided to start the touring company, MTM Roadwork’s (Making Tours Move) that provided staff and crews for groups such as: Sister Sledge, Cameo and the SOS Band.

In 1984, 1985 and 1986, Mauldin produced the New York City Fresh Festival where his son, Jermaine Dupri was the opening act. The Festival featured rap pioneers: Whodini, Kurtis Blow, Run DMC and the Fat Boys, and in the late 1980s, he honed his production and tour management skills with R&B artists: Cameo, Luther Vandross and Anita Baker and formed an artists management group. Through the management group, Mauldin helped spearhead the musical careers of: Arrested Development, Kris Kross, Da Brat and Xscape. In 1995, Mauldin served as the President of Columbia Records Black Music Division while simultaneously holding the position of Senior Vice President of Columbia Records Group which included joint venture deals with Ruffhouse Records, So So Def Records and Trackmasters.

In 1999, Mauldin left Columbia Records and moved back to Atlanta to work with his son at So So Def Recordings, and he founded the Artistic Control Group. The Artistic Control Group is a small Atlanta based entertainment firm which includes the Mauldin Brand Agency. The firm also has a music publishing component and a tour management division. In 2002, Mauldin was the executive producer for the film, Like Mike starring rapper Bow Wow. Mauldin is currently working with NASCAR to help penetrate the urban market place and has a deal to produce a motorsports inspired apparel line aimed at the crossover market which he refers to as, “the Fast Life.” Mauldin also runs a non-profit organization called Hip Hop 4 Humanity (HH4H), which he founded after the 9/11 attacks.

Mauldin was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on September 12, 2007.

Accession Number

A2007.257

Sex

Male

Interview Date

9/12/2007 |and| 2/29/2008

Last Name

Mauldin

Organizations
Schools

Murphy Elementary School

Murphy High School

First Name

Michael

Birth City, State, Country

Murphy

HM ID

MAU01

Favorite Season

Fall, Spring

State

North Carolina

Favorite Vacation Destination

Murphy, North Carolina

Favorite Quote

The World Is A Ghetto.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Georgia

Birth Date

10/30/1953

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Atlanta

Country

United States

Favorite Food

Sushi, Italian, Soul Food

Short Description

Entertainment manager and record executive Michael Mauldin (1953 - ) became the first African American president of the black music division for Columbia Records in 1995. He is owner of his own entertainment firm called Artistic Control Group which includes includes Mauldin Brand Films and the Mauldin Brand Agency.

Employment

Road Manager for Brick

Taurus Productions

MTM Roadworks, Inc.

Rock Label

Favorite Color

Black, White

Timing Pairs
0,0:1358,15:2037,24:5238,65:7178,96:8148,107:10088,138:23785,309:24355,316:27490,400:31860,448:34710,507:46019,588:48066,626:57360,822:57780,833:58550,847:59110,856:59740,870:62050,930:66390,1043:66670,1048:70940,1153:71220,1158:71570,1165:72970,1182:73320,1188:80058,1255:80722,1274:81220,1279:81718,1286:98380,1500:98680,1505:105430,1631:106705,1674:107530,1720:108430,1739:114080,1772:125940,1959:129620,2049:135909,2089:136717,2098:137525,2109:142878,2192:147870,2270:151160,2341:153400,2412:159360,2509$0,0:4785,79:21415,295:21898,300:22312,307:22933,319:23278,325:23968,340:27004,414:29488,481:31282,530:33214,634:36940,700:38113,813:38596,917:43081,999:73205,1435:83430,1581:86150,1633:86630,1641:94575,1736:103404,1906:105044,1954:114830,2097:120374,2236:121094,2250:121382,2303:121886,2316:133305,2491:133905,2502:137355,2603:149115,2829:152948,2872:157400,2945:157824,2950:159520,2964:170507,3093:173965,3174:176149,3209:181988,3320:182456,3328:183470,3360:190412,3502:190958,3510:196829,3588:204710,3755:208331,3821:213940,3989:224244,4111:224628,4120:230924,4215:239660,4369:240164,4376:241172,4400:242180,4424:242516,4429:253628,4560:254285,4568:259833,4721:265162,4832:268374,4923:284342,5076:284710,5108:285394,5122:286100,5135
DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Michael Mauldin's interview, session 1

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Michael Mauldin lists his favorites, pt. 1

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Michael Mauldin lists his favorites, pt. 2

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Michael Mauldin describes his mother's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Michael Mauldin remembers his maternal grandparents

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Michael Mauldin describes his maternal family's Native American ancestry

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Michael Mauldin describes his mother's personality

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Michael Mauldin talks about his mother's education

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Michael Mauldin describes his father's family background

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Michael Mauldin describes the Texana section of Murphy, North Carolina

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Michael Mauldin talks about segregation in Murphy, North Carolina

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Michael Mauldin describes the poverty in Murphy, North Carolina

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Michael Mauldin describes his earliest childhood memory

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Michael Mauldin lists his siblings

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Michael Mauldin remembers Christmas celebrations

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Michael Mauldin talks about his Catholic upbringing

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Michael Mauldin remembers Marie de Porres Cress

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Michael Mauldin describes his father's personality

Tape: 2 Story: 10 - Michael Mauldin talks about race relations in Murphy, North Carolina

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Michael Mauldin remembers Principal Ella B. Ragsdale

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Michael Mauldin recalls his childhood asthma

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Michael Mauldin remembers his bicycle accident

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Michael Mauldin recalls a murder in Murphy, North Carolina

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Michael Mauldin remembers the residents of the Texana community in Murphy, North Carolina

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Michael Mauldin describes his home in Murphy, North Carolina

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Michael Mauldin recalls his family's television and telephone

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Michael Mauldin describes the Texana School in Murphy, North Carolina

Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Michael Mauldin remembers his involvement with the Cub Scouts

Tape: 3 Story: 10 - Michael Mauldin recalls his experiences at summer camp

Tape: 3 Story: 11 - Michael Mauldin describes his father's involvement with car racing

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Slating of Michael Mauldin's interview, session 2

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Michael Mauldin describes his high school band, Other Side

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Michael Mauldin recalls his decision to attend the DeVry Institute of Technology in Atlanta, Georgia

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Michael Mauldin describes his first impression of Atlanta, Georgia

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Michael Mauldin remembers the shooting of a friend from college

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Michael Mauldin describes his experiences at the DeVry Institute of Technology

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Michael Mauldin recalls his first marriage

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Michael Mauldin talks about the origin of his son's name

Tape: 4 Story: 9 - Michael Mauldin recalls his early work experiences

Tape: 4 Story: 10 - Michael Mauldin recalls his return to Atlanta, Georgia

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Michael Mauldin talks about his musical experiences in Atlanta, Georgia

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Michael Mauldin remembers meeting the band Brick

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Michael Mauldin recalls touring with Brick

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Michael Mauldin recalls founding MTM Roadworks, Inc.

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Michael Mauldin recalls his collaborations with Bunnie Jackson-Ransom

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Michael Mauldin describes his reasons for starting a business

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Michael Mauldin recalls managing the arcades at the William B. Hartsfield Atlanta International Airport

Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Michael Mauldin talks about his early experiences in the music industry

Tape: 5 Story: 9 - Michael Mauldin recalls cofounding the New York City Fresh Festival

Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Michael Mauldin recalls working with Diana Ross

Tape: 6 Story: 2 - Michael Mauldin talks about the emergence of hip hop music in the South

Tape: 6 Story: 3 - Michael Mauldin describes the culture of hip hop music

Tape: 6 Story: 4 - Michael Mauldin recalls the artists involved with the Fresh Festival

Tape: 6 Story: 5 - Michael Mauldin remembers founding the Rock Label

Tape: 6 Story: 6 - Michael Mauldin describes the role of a music producer

Tape: 6 Story: 7 - Michael Mauldin talks about managing Silk Tymes Leather and Annie G.

Tape: 6 Story: 8 - Michael Mauldin recalls his work with The Reddings

Tape: 6 Story: 9 - Michael Mauldin talks about the music industry in the South

DASession

2$2

DATape

4$5

DAStory

8$3

DATitle
Michael Mauldin talks about the origin of his son's name
Michael Mauldin recalls touring with Brick
Transcript
And your child that was born, son or daughter?$$Son. My son was born, and I was really into my music. So when I realized he was born on September 23, 1972, and when I realized--for some reason I want to say that was either Friday or Saturday, but I kind of get the days mixed up. We had never really--we'd talked about it, Tina [Mauldin's first wife, Cecilia Mosley] and I, about the name, but we never really talked about it much. And I guess just, you know, the guy in me or whatever, my influence in music, I named Jermaine [Jermaine Dupri]. And, you know, I was into music. And quite honestly--you know, my name was Michael [HistoryMaker Michael Mauldin], and I did what I did. So, I named him Jermaine. One of my favorite groups at the time was obviously The Jackson Five. I'm like--even though for whatever reason, it just was--and Jermaine Jackson was a great, or I thought was a really good bass player. I'll say great bass player, but a really good bass player. And he could sing, and so that's kind of what it was. It was just like, you know, it was a kid--in a way, it was a kid thing. But then one of the greatest artists of all time that I really loved was Donny Hathaway. And I listened, I used to listen to his records all the time. And the guy that played bass for him--well, Willie Weeks played bass. But there was a guy that played guitar named Cornell Dupree on Donny Hathaway 'Live,' Cornell Dupree. And I'm just--so one day I'm riding in the car listening to the song called "Ghetto" ["The Ghetto"] with Donny Hathaway, and he had Cornell Dupree on guitar. And I'm like, "Wow, Jermaine Dupri, that would be a great name." And the only difference is that I spell it different. And because I was into cars, there used to be a car out called the Capri. And the Capri was spelled P-R-I, like, you know, instead of P-R-E, or like Grand Prix, P-R-I-X. But it was -pri. So I said, okay, you know--again, that's kind of the black thing in me I guess. I just had to make it a little different (laughter). So it's like, okay, it's going to be D-U-P-R-I, Jermaine Dupri, not like Cornell Dupree, which is P-R-E-E. I went and, you know, I told Tina, and she agreed. And I don't remember us ever really talking about it a lot, which is probably not good. I don't mean to be chauvinistic or anything, but I just told her that's what I wanted to name my son. And she went along with it, next thing I know that was on his birth certificate. So, it was Jermaine Dupri Mauldin.$So what happens next with, with Brick? How do you continue the relationship?$$Really, coincidentally--obviously they knew me. I had, again, the ghetto super van. And my--they were playing shows. They started getting more and more popular. They had a song called 'Music Matic' in '75 [1975] that really took off in south Georgia and in Florida; it really started working in Florida. And they asked me to--one night one of their cars broke down, because they were carrying all their equipment in different cars and stuff like that. And I think Reggie [Reginald J. Hargis] or one of the guys--anyway they called me up to see if I would help them get their equipment. I believe it was in Athens, from Athens, Georgia back to Atlanta [Georgia], because they went and did a gig. So I said, yeah, you know. So that Saturday morning, you know, they bought me some gas, ten dollars or five dollars or something like that, and I went up and loaded it. So when I got there, they were all, they were there with the cars that they had. And we started just loading up my van, and lo and behold, we were able to put all their equipment in my van. So, I was able to drive the van, and drove the stuff to Atlanta. When I got to Atlanta, we didn't even unload it. When I got to Atlanta, they said, "Man, Mike [HistoryMaker Michael Mauldin], we got a gig down in Savannah, Georgia tomorrow. Would you, you want to carry our stuff down to Savannah? We'll give you fifteen dollars, or twenty dollars. You can just be there." I'm like, "Yeah, yeah, no problem, cool." And that's what started it. I ended up going--and when I went with them to Savannah, that was a big show. A group called Hot Chocolate--I say a big show. It was in the auditorium, and Brick was just one of the bills. And a group called Hot Chocolate and some other--and I remember Hot Chocolate. There were probably a lot of other more well known names, but I remember that group for some reason. And at that point, I was just carrying their equipment. But now, I'm on a big stage. So I helped them put the equipment on the stage, and I started helping them set stuff up. And it just kind of became a natural thing to me. And I really just worked myself into a position with them without even saying that's what I was doing, or without them even knowing that's what I was doing. And so then when they got off stage and got through performing, obviously they were sweaty and everything. They get off stage, so they have to go back. And they had one guy, but they would go back and try to get their equipment together. I just started getting the stuff off stage for them, and helping them. And the next thing you know, they felt like they had a road crew between me and the guy that was helping them. And that's kind of the way it kicked off. So, I became a roadie at that point.$$Okay. And this is, now how long do you work with Brick?$$For a long time. I say a long time, because this was 1975. And Brick started really, really hitting, and they were doing, they did something called the Kool Jazz Festival, which was in '75 [1975]. And then that really gave me the bug, because the Kool Jazz Festival was at the, it was a stadium event. It was at the old Atlanta Stadium [Atlanta-Fulton County Stadium, Atlanta, Georgia], and I was able to take the ghetto super van. Now that van, oh, god, I don't have it today, it's a shame. But that van meant a lot to me. I was able to take that van and really drive on the Atlanta Braves field. And you know, they had the plywood and you had to follow it so that you didn't--but because I had the equipment in there, I drove--and I never will forget. I felt like I was--I'm driving out on the field with my van. And it was like such a, I'm like man, I'm on this, I'm on the Atlanta Braves baseball field. Mama [Grace Bowman Mauldin], you should see me now (laughter). You know, but I was doing it to unload the equipment, and obviously there was a lot of groups, you know, from Earth, Wind and Fire--. I mean there were just groups, prominent bands. And I'm like, okay, I've made it, this is kind of it. And again, that was '75 [1975], and things started really taking off. So from there, I became the stage manager for Brick. And things took off so good for them. They ended up doing a song, recording a song called 'Dazz,' and really that rolled us--by that time we were going into more like '76 [1976], I think. And 'Dazz' really came out in '76 [1976]. But it took off like huge for them. And then the management company bought a bigger truck, and said, "Oh, Michael do you want to drive the truck?" So now, I'm driving a bigger truck, a big red and yellow truck. And you know, I became, like I said, the stage manager extraordinaire. We started putting crews together, and it just happened really fast. The next thing I know, I'm flying all over the place. So, I worked with them--to answer your question, I worked with them up consistently probably through 1978, in and out. But in '77 [1977], I was able to start my own business [MTM Roadworks, Inc.], just from the idea of that.

Steve McKeever

Music producer and executive Steve McKeever was born in Chicago, Illinois. After graduating from St. Ignatius High School, McKeever attended the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where he graduated in 1982. From there, McKeever attended Harvard Law School where he earned his J.D degree in 1985.

After completing his studies, McKeever was hired by the law firm of Irell & Manella LLP in Los Angeles as an entertainment lawyer. While at Irell & Manella, McKeever helped launch the career of comedian Robin Harris by landing him a role in Spike Lee’s Do the Right Thing. In 1991, McKeever became the senior vice president of artists and repertoire of Motown Records; while there he helped to expand the label's lineup and manage its already burgeoning list of stars. In 1992, McKeever created MoJAZZ Records, a subsidiary of Motown, where he continued to help launch the careers of rising stars. In 1993, McKeever was instrumental in the sale of Motown Records to PolyGram Records; he eventually left Motown to work on his own projects, and in 1998 founded Hidden Beach Recordings (HBR).

Hidden Beach Recordings went on to become a leader in the music industry, representing acts such as R&B performer Jill Scott, saxophonist Mike Phillips, singer Darius Rucker and others. McKeever also introduced a variety of progressive initiatives under the Hidden Beach name, including the College Internship Program, an international effort that provides college students with hands-on music business experience. This program boasts nearly 400 members and has become a model for the entertainment industry.

McKeever served on the boards of directors of several organizations, including the National Association of Recording Arts and Sciences; the Northern Trust DreamMakers Forum; and City of Hope, a Los Angeles-based cancer research foundation.

Accession Number

A2004.236

Sex

Male

Interview Date

11/17/2004

Last Name

McKeever

Maker Category
Occupation
Organizations
Schools

St. Ignatius College Preparatory School

First Name

Steve

Birth City, State, Country

Chicago

HM ID

MCK06

Favorite Season

Fall, Winter

State

Illinois

Favorite Vacation Destination

Aspen, Colorado, Kenya

Favorite Quote

None

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

California

Birth Date

6/18/1960

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Los Angeles

Country

United States

Favorite Food

None

Short Description

Record executive Steve McKeever (1960 - ) served as the senior vice president of artists and repertoire of Motown Records; during his tenure he created the subsidiary MoJAZZ Records. In 1998 McKeever founded Hidden Beach Recordings.

Favorite Color

Blue

Timing Pairs
0,0:20725,337:22000,361:46450,722:49262,779:49558,784:54516,866:55700,889:56514,914:59178,958:65098,1081:84038,1289:84433,1295:85144,1305:87593,1350:89726,1389:101770,1539:108810,1689:125273,1915:126601,1939:137157,2037:137715,2044:138087,2049:145310,2111:148054,2150:148446,2155:148936,2162:157266,2293:174571,2480:176646,2506:177974,2528:189804,2650:214910,2924:217458,2986:224243,3038:249264,3353:249803,3361:251343,3391:260370,3467:270866,3636:271276,3642:286890,3817$0,0:1218,4:1542,9:5673,77:10938,149:11424,156:76594,891:77842,920:85815,982:86580,994:101250,1168:101810,1176:102130,1181:104520,1189:113680,1340:113960,1345:114240,1350:115430,1373:140070,1696:140604,1703:146190,1713:172276,1992:175495,2055:209491,2445:214041,2494:230716,2744:243840,2882
DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Steve McKeever's interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Steve McKeever lists his favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Steve McKeever talks about his maternal family ancestry

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Steve McKeever describes his maternal grandfather

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Steve McKeever tells stories about members of his extended maternal family

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Steve McKeever describes his maternal family's migration to Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Steve McKeever talks about his mother's childhood

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Steve McKeever talks about his father's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Steve McKeever tell stories about his father's experience at Wendell Philips High School in Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Steve McKeever describes his family's relationship to Chicago painter Allen J. Beasley

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Steve McKeever describes how his parents met

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Steve McKeever talks about his mother's teaching career in Chicago Public Schools

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Steve McKeever describes the sights, sounds, and smells of his childhood in Chicago, Illinois' Hyde Park neighborhood

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Steve McKeever remembers the 1972 U.S. presidential election

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Steve McKeever describes growing up in Chicago, Illinois' Hyde Park neighborhood

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Steve McKeever explains a photograph of him playing a piano on Christmas morning

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Steve McKeever talks about his favorite records from childhood

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Steve McKeever remembers learning to play the piano

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Steve McKeever talks about his grade school years at Bret Harte Elementary School

Tape: 2 Story: 10 - Steve McKeever talks about his experience at St. Ignatius High School in Chicago, Illinois, pt. 1

Tape: 2 Story: 11 - Steve McKeever talks about his experience at St. Ignatius High School, pt. 2

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Steve McKeever describes his extracurricular activities at St. Ignatius High School in Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Steve McKeever describes his academic performance and aspirations in high school

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Steve McKeever remembers his early interest in entrepreneurship

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Steve McKeever explains making the decision to become an entertainment attorney

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Steve McKeever remembers the P.S. Recording Studio in Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Steve McKeever talks about the African American community's contributions to the entertainment business

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Steve McKeever talks about figures in the Chicago music industry

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Steve McKeever talks about giving legal advice to Chicago musicians as an undergraduate student

Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Steve McKeever describes organizing concerts at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Tape: 3 Story: 10 - Steve McKeever talks about being accepted into Harvard Law School in Cambridge, Massachusetts

Tape: 3 Story: 11 - Steve McKeever talks about becoming vice president of programming for the Harvard Law School Forum

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Steve McKeever talks about convincing Stevie Wonder to speak at the Harvard Law School Forum

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Steve McKeever talks about his relationship with Stevie Wonder

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Steve McKeever lists influential figures he met as vice president of programming for the Harvard Law School Forum

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Steve McKeever talks about relocating to California and producing comedian Robin Harris' 'Be-Be's Kids' album, pt. 1

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Steve McKeever talks about relocating to California and producing comedian Robin Harris' 'Be-Be's Kids' album, pt. 2

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Steve McKeever describes joining Motown and founding the Mo Jazz record label

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Steve McKeever describes having his internship program idea rejected at Motown

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Steve McKeever talks about the beginning of Hidden Beach Recordings, his independent record label

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Steve McKeever recalls obstacles at the founding of Hidden Beach Recordings

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Steve McKeever talks about meeting and signing Jill Scott

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Steve McKeever lists music artists at Hidden Beach Recordings

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Steve McKeever describes how he measures a record's potential for success

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Steve McKeever talks about his interest in alternative music and the reception of reggae in the United States

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Steve McKeever talks about the competitive nature of the music business

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Steve McKeever describes the Hidden Beach philosophy

Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Steve McKeever talks about the importance of finding the right audience for an alternative artist

Tape: 5 Story: 9 - Steve McKeever considers the mistakes he made as an entrepreneur and what he would do differently

Tape: 5 Story: 10 - Steve McKeever talks about his desire to expand into other forms of entertainment

Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Steve McKeever describes his hopes and concerns for the African American community

Tape: 6 Story: 2 - Steve McKeever explains the Hidden Beach Recordings internship program

Tape: 6 Story: 3 - Steve McKeever reflects upon his legacy

Tape: 6 Story: 4 - Steve McKeever talks about what his family's response to success of Hidden Beach Recordings

Tape: 6 Story: 5 - Steve McKeever talks about his sister

Tape: 6 Story: 6 - Steve McKeever talks about his son, Brent McKeever

Tape: 6 Story: 7 - Steve McKeever describes how he would like to be remembered

DASession

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DATape

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DAStory

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DATitle
Steve McKeever talks about convincing Stevie Wonder to speak at the Harvard Law School Forum
Steve McKeever describes joining Motown and founding the Mo Jazz record label
Transcript
So, you were in programming heaven at Harvard [Law School, Cambridge, Massachusetts]--I guess in terms of being able to--$$Yeah. And it was amazing--I mean, the access and the power of that letterhead, and the power of--opened up any door--I mean, pretty much, any, any door. And to my huge surprise, I came back one day. And I had a message on my answering machine from--and she's somebody in Chicago [Illinois] now. She's very funny--Theresa Cropper. Do you know Theresa? She's at Northwestern [University, Evanston, Illinois]. Actually, she just left, going to a firm, but she was working with Stevie Wonder. And so, she saw, she happened to be a lawyer herself. And, but she was like--I don't know if she was running a lot of Stevie's campaign for the Martin Luther King holiday and a bunch of other things, and left Chicago, moved out to California to work for him, and in a pile of all the piles of requests of, you know, Stevie to come speak here, Stevie, to come to speak there. She noticed that the, you know, Harvard had a very nice letterhead, the Harvard Law School letterhead and, and just blew on a phone call about the request. And she says, opposed to send in the standard blow-off letter, we can't do it, or just not ignoring it, she want to--it's kind of just being courteous because of--she realized the prestige of the organization, 'cause in our letter, we talked about [Fidel] Castro addressed the, you know, law school forum. And [President John F. Kennedy] had addressed the forum and this--we had this collection of tapes. And [Reverend Dr.] Martin Luther King [Jr.] had spoken at the Harvard Law School Forum, so it was a very prestigious, you know, place to, you know, come and address. And it was (laughter)--it was kind of funny. It's almost embarrassing to think now--I had, I then had a number to Stevie Wonder's offices. And my biggest hero in life, he was again the person who taught me so much about life and philosophy and just everything--give me so much joy. I called him every day, pretty much every day from October, and I think it was like '83 [1983] to March, every business day, '84 [1984], five days a week as part of my job almost. If I got out of class, go to my place, and make my calls. And I would call, and I got to know his assistant, Chris James, who was--became my assistant actually very funny. Theresa became a good friend and it was basically this kid's going to drive me crazy. And I got that to almost everybody in that, in his organization, where I finally got a date where he was going to come to the school, and Stevie came to the school. And he--of all the wonderful speakers and people that we had, he was by far the most powerful, the most amazing. And he not only gave a speech, but he performed and he--it was a week after Marvin Gaye had gotten shot and killed--and he spoke about guns. And, but the biggest thing he talked about was responsibility, and how we had a responsibility as, you know, students here, with this type of education, to give back. And it was such, such, just a wonderful, wonderful address. And he, really from that point, I met him and got to know him. And I was working with Big Brothers at the time in Boston. And then, you know, got Theresa, and got hooked up into the Chicago's first celebration of the Martin Luther King holiday, working with him. And so, I moved to California. I only had one telephone number, you know. Theresa was moving back to Chicago for that summer. And when I moved out of here, I knew I had Stevie's telephone number at least, and people in his organization. And so, I almost could trace back everybody I knew back then to him. And he's just a great--sort of spoke in the middle of the wheel, as I came out here to do and worked as--in an entertainment law firm.$And from there, I met Jheryl Busby, the president of Motown, you know, right around the same time. And it also had gotten sent over to Europe for a summer program through PolyGram for their executive fast track business. So PolyGram was trying to promote me in some pretty big positions like head of black music--had me, you know, running a publishing division, doing all these things after coming back to this wonderful program, and Motown would, Motown was this wonderful dream for an entrepreneur 'cause it's still an entre-, it was still an independent company, one of the last independent companies. Actually at the time, it was a few like A and M Island, you know, Motown, et cetera, Virgin, and was one of the--it was the first independent to sort of sell, one level. I went there and became head of A and R [artists and repertoire] and the general manager, so I was in charge of this ridiculously, you know, historic roster with Diana Ross and Lionel Richie, and Stevie Wonder, the Temptations, but also had a chance to start my own company called Mo Jazz. And that was really the thing that lured me to Motown, which was the idea if I could start my own company from scratch underneath the Motown umbrella. And that was sort of an alternative jazz, a kind of eclectic kind of thing that sort of fit my taste. And we started that from scratch at some--$$So, what kind of music did--would you--well, who was some of the artists that--$$At Mo Jazz, we had like Foley who's a Ohio--was it Dayton [Ohio] he was from? No, Columbus, Ohio. Funky, funky, funky played with Miles [Davis] to--Norman Brown was the first act I signed, a guitar player, who's still around now--it's actually making records. Impromptu, the duet of J. Spencer; Terra Sul, a Brazilian band; Wayne Johnson; and a fairly eclectic instrumental, you know, sort of based, you know, larger--Norman Connors, has a record with, and, but as a--we were actually very profitable as, you know, 'cause our overhead was nothing. It was me and an intern for the most part, you know, using the backdrop of Motown and all these other people from Motown participating and, you know, sort of helping with the process, but sort of dedicated to Motown. It was a, just really one kid who worked with me initially. And we did, you know, Norman Brown's record came out and sold--I think, 270,000 copies. And the next one sold close to 500,000 copies, so it was a real, you know, expectations in the instrumental world is 15,000 copies. That's a lot of records, you know--25,000, you're in the top part of the chart; 50,000 records, you're at the top of the chart. So, we were, by sort of not taking the traditional approach to marketing in how we were doing things across the board. It did really, really well. Motown sold in '93 [1993], and things started to change quite a bit when PolyGram bought the company.