HipHop TV Launches in Oakland

 

edloverhiphoptv
Ed Lover, HipHop TV VP, Artist Relations.

Oakland’s Watch Now Networks has launched a 24-hour streaming network for hip-hop content.

HipHopTV started streaming live on Monday at Hiero Day, a music festival hosted by Oakland’s Hieroglyphics collective that features top California hip-hop talent and annually attracts tens of thousands.

The network, which plans original programming alongside showing music videos, live performances and other content, is viewable on computers, mobile devices, tablets and set top boxes such as Apple TV and Roku.

Oakland’s Shawn Granberry, the founder and CEO, has a long history of promoting entertainment in the Bay Area. HipHopTV’s vice president of artist relations is Ed Lover, the New York radio personality who hosted early hip-hop television series “Yo! MTV Raps” in the 1980s.

Another soon-to-be launched network called Premo, based in San Francisco, appears to be aiming for a similar multicultural and Millennial viewer and haspartnered with Public Enemy frontman Chuck D for original musical programming.

However, unlike Premo, which plans a subscription fee of $4.99 per month, HipHopTV is free.

Oakland’s Watch Now Networks has launched a 24-hour streaming network for hip-hop content.

HipHopTV started streaming live on Monday at Hiero Day, a music festival hosted by Oakland’s Hieroglyphics collective that features top California hip-hop talent and annually attracts tens of thousands.

The network, which plans original programming alongside showing music videos, live performances and other content, is viewable on computers, mobile devices, tablets and set top boxes such as Apple TV and Roku.

Oakland’s Shawn Granberry, the founder and CEO, has a long history of promoting entertainment in the Bay Area. HipHopTV’s vice president of artist relations is Ed Lover, the New York radio personality who hosted early hip-hop television series “Yo! MTV Raps” in the 1980s.

Another soon-to-be launched network called Premo, based in San Francisco, appears to be aiming for a similar multicultural and Millennial viewer and haspartnered with Public Enemy frontman Chuck D for original musical programming.

However, unlike Premo, which plans a subscription fee of $4.99 per month, HipHopTV is free.

Source: HipHop TV Launches in Oakland

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Oakland Conservatory another victim of Oakland’s soaring rents

PUBLIC MUSIC CONSERVATORY
Director Angela Wellman conducts the band during a rehearsal of the Oakland Public Music Conservatory, Tuesday, Dec. 1, 2015, at Westlake Middle School in Oakland, Calif. (D. Ross Cameron/Bay Area News Group)

By Tammerlin Drummond Oakland Tribune Columnist

POSTED:   12/02/2015

Angela Wellman’s lifelong dream, the Oakland Public Conservatory of Music, had reached its 10th anniversary milestone. But then late last year, things suddenly fell apart.

 The conservatory that the jazz trombonist cofounded to provide high quality, affordable music education for children and adults got gobbled up by what Wellman calls “the gentrification monster.” The building on Franklin Street in downtown Oakland that had housed the music school since 2004 was sold. Under the new ownership, the rent soared. The conservatory received a 30-day eviction notice 30 days before its youth prep academy was scheduled to start. Wellman hired attorneys and was able to stay through the end of 2014. Yet she was still forced to shutter her beloved conservatory and find storage for its vast collection of musical instruments. No small feat when you’re talking about 20 pianos, 25 violins, 20 guitars, 20-something congas, drum sets, trumpets, trombones, cellos, giant marimbas, steel pans, a vast music library, office furniture and supplies.
 “It was very traumatic,” Wellman says. “We started looking for a space but with the market the way it is, it was just crazy.”

Wellman decided to take the conservatory on hiatus for several months.

Now she’s back and is searching for a new permanent home. With the rents being what they are, her focus is deep East Oakland, which is one of the few remaining affordable areas in the city.

The conservatory may be currently homeless, but Wellman hasn’t let that keep her from her mission to provide free top-notch music education to urban children. In most jazz instruction programs, Wellman says, many of the students and teachers are white, studying music that originated with African-Americans. “Our kids don’t have the honor and privilege of studying at this deeper level that I and others are bringing,” Wellman says.

To that end, Wellman has teamed up with SFJAZZ to provide a free after-school music program for middle and high school students, funded in part by Arts for Oakland Kids and the Abundance Foundation. Most of the kids are African-American and from Oakland.

This school term, the new SFJAZZ-OPC Academy takes place in the band room at West Lake Middle School every Tuesday afternoon.Wellman, a third-generation jazz musician from Kansas City, Missouri, is the loving but no-nonsense conductor.

The students learn the techniques of playing in a jazz ensemble alongside adult musicians. Saxophone, bass and piano teachers come in on alternate weeks.

It’s not uncommon to see a jazz legend in the mix. One recent afternoon, Bay Area virtuoso guitarist Calvin Keys, who recorded with Ray Charles among many other greats, sat in on electric guitar.

Keys said he’s “trying to tell kids that there’s something to celebrate other than a drive-by.”

He was talking about the sad fact that all too-often when young people in urban neighborhood get together it’s to celebrate the life of someone killed in a street shooting. “We get these kids and show them how to play this art form and it’s beautiful,” Keys said.

Thirteen-year-old Aviv Schifrin of Berkeley, Calif., right, plays a solo during a rehearsal of the Oakland Public Music Conservatory, Tuesday, Dec. 1, 2015, at Westlake Middle School in Oakland, Calif. (D. Ross Cameron/Bay Area News Group) (D. ROSS CAMERON)

After school, Rasec Barravino, 13, walks 2 ½ miles each way to the program for the chance to jam on his baritone sax. “I just love to play music,” he says.

Aviv Schifrin, an eight-grader from Berkeley, was a student at the conservatory before it closed.

“I was really disappointed and I kept asking my parents when I could go back to OPC,” he said.

The young trumpeter and his fellow musicians will perform Saturday at a youth music festival at First Unitarian Church of Oakland.

“We have a lot of kids who have a gift,” Wellman says. “And when you’ve got a gift, we’ve got to nurture that gift.”

Despite the obstacles, the Oakland Public Conservatory of Music is continuing to do just that.

The nonprofit holds its 10th anniversary gala Sunday. For more information go to http://www.opcmusic.org/Home.php

Tammerlin Drummond is a columnist for the Bay Area News Group. Her column runs Thursday and Sunday. Contact her at tdrummond@bayareanewsgroup.com or follow her atTwitter.com/tammerlin.

Source: Drummond: Oakland Conservatory another victim of Oakland’s soaring rents