For Immediate Release
For Information Contact Katrina Owens
Monday, April 23, 2023
The Legendary O’Jays, Grammy Award-Winning Stephanie Mills, Dru Hill, and Howard Hewitt Announced as Indiana Black Expo’s Free Concert Lineup
Last Stop on The Love Train. The O’Jays’ final tour.
INDIANAPOLIS, IN – Indiana Black Expo announced its lineup for the Summer Celebration Outdoor Concert during the weekend of Black Expo’s 53rd annual Summer Celebration, July 14th – July 16th. The outdoor concert will take place on Friday, July 14, at American Legion Mall and will be headlined by R&B Legends the O’Jays, Grammy award-winning singer Stephanie Mills, R&B group Dru Hill, and legendary R&B crooner Howard Hewett. “This year, we are excited to celebrate 53 years of Black culture and entertainment, and we want to ensure that our audience and community witnesses the O’Jays, one of the greatest R&B groups, during its final tour,” said IBE President Alice Watson. The outdoor concert, free to the public, will begin at 6:00 p.m. For complete details and access to VIP tickets, visit www.SummerCelebration.net or call 317.925.2702.
About The O’Jays
After more than 60 years of electrifying people all over the world, the mighty, legendary R&B/Soul kings, the O’Jays, are set to embark on their final tour! Featuring original members Eddie Levert Sr. and Walter Williams Sr., who have been singing together since they were kids. The O’Jays are touring history, a connection to an era, and a sound that formed the soundtrack for the lives of several generations. In 1972, Gamble & Huff, a team of producers and songwriters with whom the O’Jays had been working for several years, signed the group to their Philadelphia International label. With this magic formula, often called The Sound of Philadelphia, The O’Jays scored their first number 1 and million-selling song, “Backstabbers, followed by more chart-topping pop and R&B singles, including “Love Train,” “Put Your Hands Together,” “For The Love of Money,” “I Love Music,” “Darlin’ Darlin’ Baby (Sweet, Tender, Love),” “Livin’ For The Weekend” and “Use Ta Be My Girl.” Throughout their career, The O’Jays have achieved 10 Gold albums, 9 Platinum albums, and 10 #1 hits. It’s been a long journey, but thanks to the fans, the LOVE TRAIN is still going strong! The O’Jays were inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2005. They were inducted into the Vocal Group Hall of Fame in 2005 and honored with BET’s Lifetime Achievement Award in 2009. In 2013, they were inducted into The Official R&B Music Hall of Fame.
About Stephanie Mills
Stephanie Mills is a Grammy award-winning singer, songwriter, actress, and Broadway star. Born in Brooklyn, New York, she started singing at the age of three. Stephanie won the competitive Amateur Hour at the Apollo for six straight weeks and made her Broadway debut at a young age starring in the musical “Maggie Flynn.” Ms. Mills attended the prestigious private children’s school, Lincoln Square Academy. This New York native rose to stardom and became a household name as “Dorothy” in the original Broadway run of the hit musical, “The Wiz.” The song “Home” from the show later became a Number 1 U.S. R&B hit. In 2015, Stephanie was cast as “Aunt Em” in the NBC live musical “The Wiz, forty years after her initial Broadway appearance in the production. Ms. Mills is the recipient of countless number-one hit records, including “I Have Learned to Respect The Power Of Love,” “I Feel Good All Over,” “You’re Putting A Rush On Me,” “Something In The Way You Make Me Feel,” and “Home.” She has won multiple awards, including a Grammy Award, Tony Award, NAACP Image Award, and American Music Award, just to name a few. Recently, Ms. Mills made her feature film debut in Lifetime’s “Pride: A Seven Deadly Sins Story.”
About Dru Hill
Founded in 1992 as “14K Harmony,” the group, discovered by manager Kevin Peck, evolved to become “Dru Hill” in 1996, engraving itself into the legacy of R&B music and bringing a dynamic sound to the ever-changing industry. Known for hits like “Tell Me,” “In My Bed,” “Never Make a Promise,” and “How Deep Is Your Love,” the group has given the world music for the ages. Over the last 25+ years, Dru Hill has sold over 40 million records worldwide. Recording new material and continuously performing at sold-out venues around the globe, Dru Hill continues to solidify its legacy as one of the greatest groups of all time. In honor of their 25th Anniversary in the music industry, Dru Hill is featuring all members of the group, past and present, to give fans an experience they will never forget. Alongside founding members SisQo, Nokio, Jazz, and the latest additions Smoke and Black from the R&B group “Playa,” former members Scola and Tao rejoin the dynamic lineup. The group has exciting surprises in store for its expanding fan base everywhere.
About Howard Hewett
Howard Hewett is one of the most gifted vocalists in the post-Marvin Gaye era of pop R&B. Hewett got his mainstream break as the male vocal lead in Shalamar, a centerpiece of Dick Griffey’s SOLAR (Sound of Los Angeles Records) label. The group gave the world feel-good dance favorites, The Second Time Around and A Night to Remember, For the Lover in You, as well as a number of beautiful B-side ballads like You Can Count On Me and Somewhere There’s a Love. In the mid-eighties, Howard sets out on his solo career, releasing I Commit to Love in 1986 on Elektra from the first single, Hewett made magic, giving his amorous voice and whimsical lyrics to Stay, I’m For Real and the title track. Most beloved track on this freshman release would be his spiritually grounded Say Amen. This single soared on the Inspirational charts and has enjoyed the status of a modern gospel classic. Subsequent projects have solidified Hewett’s place in the high ranks of R&B balladeers by writing and collaborating and lending his voice within an intimate group of crooners, including George Duke, Quincy Jones, James Ingram, Anita Baker, Prince, and Stanley Clarke. With Elektra, he released Forever and Ever (1988- Once, Twice, Three Times), Howard Hewett (1990- Show Me), and Allegiance (1992- Can We Try).
For more information about Summer Celebration, visit www.SummerCelebration.net.
About Indiana Black Expo, Inc.
Indiana Black Expo, Inc. is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) statewide organization with 12-chapter affiliates. The mission of IBE is to serve as an effective voice and vehicle for the social and economic advancement of African-Americans. IBE is known for its two major events, Summer Celebration and Circle City Classic, and provides year-round youth and family initiatives, including its Education Conference, Black Business Training Institute, Performing Arts Academy, Community Learning Hub, Education Day (college fair), Summer Internship Program, Scholarship Fund, Statewide Anti-Tobacco Initiative, Youth Leadership Summit, Employment Opportunity Fair and Business Conference.