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DMX, Scarface, Naughty By Nature Support Artist Empowerment

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On October 28th, the Artist Empowerment Coalition

(AEC) will kick off its first benefit concert in a series that will continue

through 2003. Artists scheduled to perform include legendary Stevie Wonder,

DMX, Roberta Flack, Faith Evans, Montell Jordan, Scarface, Naughty by Nature,

Hezekiah Walker, Doug E. Fresh and many others.

The coalition plans to use the concert series

as a platform to raise public awareness for recording and performing artists

worldwide. “The Artist Empowerment Coalition represents a long overdue

opportunity for artists, whose cries for information and fairness have been

ignored,” says AEC representative and recording artist Roberta Flack.

In an effort to effect positive change in the

entertainment industry, the AEC has adopted a formal structure that focuses

on artist empowerment and accountability by the entertainment industry. Key

priorities that head up the AEC’s agenda include ownership of masters and

music publishing, limitations on long-term recording contracts, pension and

health benefits, piracy, diversity, equal opportunity and artistic integrity.

AEC’s uniqueness is based on their push for equitable treatment for all

artists.

New York based entertainment attorney and General

Counsel to the AEC, L. Londell McMillan joined multi-platinum artist Montell

Jordan in testimony for the Joint Hearing of the California Senate Committee

on Judiciary and the California Senate Select Committee on the Entertainment

Industry. McMillan, who is known for his work in winning freedom for artists,

like Prince and rap artists The Lox and Ja Rule told AllHipHop.com in a statement:

"Today’s difficult times in the music industry require a genuine system

of partnership and commitment, not a system of ongoing indentured servitude."

McMillan said that he considered artists "sharecroppers"

who were subjected to indentured servitude by record labels and says that the

only real way to accomplish change is to rally artists in the community in a

movement to take back their power.

"It’s time to get it on – I might even write

a speech!," DMX said.

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