It looks like Uptown Records founder Andre Harrell will get the send-off he deserves, thanks to an upcoming tribute that will feature some of his closest friends and mentees.
BET will broadcast Mr. Champagne and Bubbles, a tribute to the late music business legend on Sunday and it will feature a long list of his famous friends.
Mariah Carey, Chris Rock, Jamie Foxx, Babyface, Naomi Campbell, Lee Daniels, Clarence Avant, Robin Thicke, Kimora Lee Simmons, and Russell Simmons are just a few celebs who will participate in the special to memorialize their friend and mentor who died unexpectedly on May 7 at age 59.
Harrell’s death was first confirmed early May 8 by DJ D-Nice while spinning during his Club Quarantine series on Instagram Live.
“Truly heartbroken. Rest peacefully, Andre Harrell,” D-Nice later captioned a post.
Harrell, who was also one half of the 80s hip-hop duo Dr. Jeckyll & Mr. Hyde, gave Combs his first shot in music before he went on to become the entertainment mogul he is today. Harrell hired a young Combs as an intern in 1990, later promoting him to an A&R executive.
Harrell, a Bronx, New York native worked with Russell Simmons at Def Jam Records. He was eventually promoted to vice president and general manager. Harrell decided to part ways with Def Jam to launch a record label of his own, Uptown Records.
Other legendary artists who got their start at Harrell’s Uptown Records include the Notorious B.I.G. and Mary J. Blige, who became the label’s first female artist. Harrell ultimately fired Combs who then founded Bad Boy Records — taking Biggie with him.
Mr. Chamoagne and Bubbles will air commercial-free this Sunday on BET, BET Jams, BET Soul and REVOLT TV, where Harrell was vice-chairman.
Have you subscribed to theGrio’s new podcast “Dear Culture”? Download our newest episodes now!