August 5, 2008

Heineken Red Star Soul Sets Stage for Nine Independent Achiever Award Recipients in 2008

Heineken USA announced today the recipients of the 2008 Heineken Independent Achiever Award. Heineken created the Independent Achiever Award three years ago to recognize and celebrate individual achievement in music both on stage and behind the scenes. The Heineken Independent Achiever award honors individuals who demonstrate the hustle, integrity and drive to succeed while inspiring others along the way. Each recipient will be presented with the award at Heineken Red Star Soul concert events headlined by artists including Ashanti, Keyshia Cole, Raheem DeVaughn, Chrisette Michele and Dwele, among others.

Each award recipient will be honored during Heineken Red Star Soul in a city they have been particularly tied to. This year's recipients include:

 --  Andre Harrell (New York) - Self-proclaimed "lifestyle entertainment     entrepreneur," Harrell is the founder of Uptown Entertainment and is     responsible for catapulting R&B and soul stars Jodeci, Heavy D and The     Boyz, Mary J. Blige, and Al B. Sure! to stardom.  Harrell has also     contributed to the development of Sean Combs by giving him his first big     break in the business and later serving as his mentor. --  Mark Batson (Los Angeles) - Record producer, arranger and songwriter     whose work transcends musical genres and includes songwriting for soul     stars Anthony Hamilton and Alicia Keys as well as the Dave Matthews Band     and James Blunt. --  George Daniels (Chicago) - Music industry veteran and owner of     George's Music Room in Chicago who is known and respected by nearly every     major hip-hop and soul artist to come out of the Windy City for his     contributions to the local music scene. --  Amp Fiddler (Detroit) - A mainstay on the Detroit soul circuit and has     been recognized for keeping soul music alive in Motown. --  Joi Gilliam (Atlanta) - Selected for serving as an inspiration in     Atlanta and for developing a record label for up-and-coming talent. --  Harold Lilly (Philadelphia) - Lilly has consistently created hit songs     for some of music's hottest names, including Luther Vandross ("Take You     Out"), Angie Stone ("Brother"), Brandy ("Talk About Our Love") and Fantasia     ("Baby Mama") and until now has not received the due mainstream recognition     for his continued contributions to R&B and soul music. --  Tabi Bonney (Washington D.C.) - Bonney is viewed by many as a rising     soul artist working hard on the D.C. live performance circuit, following in     the footsteps of past Heineken Independent Achiever Award recipients from     Washington, D.C. W. Ellington Felton and 2007 GRAMMY-nominee Raheem     DeVaughn. --  DJ Mick Boogie (Cleveland) - A talented young DJ who is a mainstay in     Cleveland music community for his unique style and wide-appeal. Mick can be     found spinning at parties for celebrities such as Lebron James, Venus and     Serena Williams, Jay-Z and more. --  Troy Taylor (Dallas) - Taylor has worked hard behind the scenes for     more than 20 years, elevating some of today's hip-hops hottest acts     throughout the last two decades.      

The Heineken Independent Achiever award recipients were hand-selected by a distinguished committee consisting of President of Motown Records Sylvia Rhone; music industry veteran and neo-soul pioneer Kedar Massenburg; five-time Grammy-winning producer and songwriter Bryan-Michael Cox; "Lifestyle Specialist" and former Vice President of A&R at Roc-A-Fella Records, Kenny Burns; and founder of Atlanta's FunkJazz Kafe and past Independent Achiever Award recipient Jason Orr.

"It was an honor to convene with my peers and discuss those worthy to be recognized as a recipient of the Heineken Independent Achiever Award," said Cox. "I'm excited to continue to be associated with this program and am proud to be able to recognize the likes Harold Lilly, Andre Harrell, and Joi Gilliam, who are all truly inspirational figures that have, and continue to, shape R&B and soul music."

"Through the involvement of our selection committee, we hope to shine an even greater spotlight on the incredible accomplishments of this year's Heineken Independent Achievement Award recipients," said Shane Hoyne, Heineken Senior Brand Director, Heineken USA. "Red Star Soul is Heineken's way to recognize and celebrate individuals whose on-stage and behind the scenes work have long inspired and rewarded soul music lovers all over the world."

Heineken Red Star Soul

Heineken Red Star Soul is a series of live musical concerts and events created by Heineken to celebrate and recognize emerging and established artists and individuals who have blazed independent paths to success in soul and R&B music. The 2008 Heineken Red Star Soul experience will feature performances by highly-regarded artists Ashanti, Keyshia Cole, Raheem DeVaughn, Lyfe Jennings, Chrisette Michele and Dwele.

About Heineken's Support of Music

Heineken Red Star Soul is a proprietary event demonstrating Heineken's continued commitment to bringing consumers innovative and electrifying musical experiences. In addition to Heineken Red Star Soul and the Heineken Independent Achiever Award, the brand recently announced a two-year sponsorship agreement with the legendary Apollo Theater and the creation of the Heineken New Legends Concert Series. The series, which kicked off in February with two performances by Philadelphia collective The Roots, will serve as a new cornerstone of the theater's annual performance schedule. For years, Heineken has also been involved with Premiere Latin music events, artists and causes including the Billboard Latin Music Conference and Awards, the Latin Grammy Awards, Coachella and Street Scene.

For more information about Heineken Red Star Soul concert dates, locations and performance lineups, as well as information about the Heineken Independent Achiever Award, selection committee members and each recipient, log on to

About Heineken USA

Heineken USA Inc., the nation's premier beer importer, is a subsidiary of Heineken International BV, which is the world's most international brewer. Brands imported into the U.S. include: Heineken Lager, the world's most international beer brand; Heineken Premium Light; Amstel Light, a leading imported light beer brand; and Buckler non-alcoholic brew. Heineken USA is also the exclusive USA importer for the Tecate, Tecate Light, Dos Equis, Sol, Carta Blanca and Bohemia brands from FEMSA Cerveza of Mexico. Please visit

 CONTACT: Tamara Moore Heineken USA 914.681.4153 [email protected]  Will Cutrone Manning, Selvage & Lee 212.468.3918 [email protected]

SOURCE: Heineken USA