A golden opportunity emerged in 2023 in the competitive world of music when the Black Music Action Coalition (BMAC) teamed up with legends Jimmy Jam, Terry Lewis and ASCAP to launch an annual grant, the BMAC x Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis Music Maker Grant.
On Wednesday (November 15), they opened applications for the the second annual grant, promising to light the way for emerging Black music producers and songwriters across the United States. The applications will be open until November 30.
This isn’t just any grant; it’s a beacon of hope and a launchpad for new talent, inspired by the Hall of Fame-worthy careers of Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis. Last year, the grant changed the game for up-and-coming artist Mondaii.
“The music maker grant and the $5,000 funding helped to kick start my career,” Mondaii said. “With the money, I was able to fund the mixing for my latest single ‘Back N Forth.’ I was also able to pay for a promotional photoshoot for the cover art and allocate a budget of $2,000 toward a PR campaign to generate traction towards the single.”
The grant isn’t solely about the money. It’s a mentorship paradise, offering studio time and guidance from the BMAC Board, Executive Leadership Council and the iconic Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis themselves.
As Willie “Prophet” Stiggers, CEO & president of BMAC, puts it, “Black Music Action Coalition is committed to ensuring the next generation of leaders in our industry are equipped with the knowledge, resources and access that our community deserves and does not always receive. We see the impact made when we truly invest in our future. Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis are two of the greatest producers, songwriters and human beings in this industry, so having them as mentors to a young person is invaluable. When you add the network that the BMAC Board & our Executive Leadership Council and ASCAP will provide, this is really an incredible opportunity.”
Mondaii added, “The whole experience was truly life changing. Prophet, Parlay [Hip-Hop Global Reach Foundation] and none other than the legendary Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis all provided ongoing mentorship, and I literally called on Prophet and Parlay for everything. They really have been an instrumental part of me learning the music business.”
The 2024 winner will be unveiled in December, in a celebration of new talent and enduring legacies. For those ready to leap into their musical journey, all roads lead to the BMAC website for applications and more details.