UP CLOSE WITH JEANIE
By Jeanie Summerville
Whatz up, babies?
As for me, I’m just enjoying myself shining the spotlight on you and all that you do, as we travel on our journey of love together to get to know one another better. On that note, let’s get started and have some fun. But first, I need to say, please read this with an open mind because I don’t want any of you to get the wrong impression and think that he’s bragging because he’s not. He’s just sharing with you the truth about what’s going on in his life now vs., how it use to be. You’ll also find out how he’s helping others to do the same. Afterward, I hope you’ll be as proud of him as I am. So at this time, just sit back, relax and enjoy. Or, stand and jump and shout if you want to! You can do that, because Frost Illustrated is gonna take you there.
“Hello Frost Illustrated readers. My name is Richard Owens and I’m glad that my family moved here in the late ’70s because it makes me proud to call Fort Wayne, home. By profession, I’m an entertainment promoter with Good Times Entertainment Group and my partners are Trey Cato from 2K Tight Barber Shop, Patricia Jeminson, Dana Wright, Yolanda Jones and Tasha Smith.
“Good Times Entertainment Group began in 2011 and we provide live entertainment for adults, such as, old school and R&B bands, as well as comedians. For the younger people, it’s hip hop bands, special events, parties or whatever they’re interested in.
“You may have heard our latest promotion on the radio and seen our posters posted all around the city because Good Tines Entertainment Group & WILD 96.3 presented an All Star Comedy Jam at IPFW Rhinehart Music Center, Saturday March 2. The headliner was national comedian, Kenny Howell. You may know him from Def Comedy Jam and BET’s Comic View. He has opened up for national music artist, numerous stage plays, TV shows and has performed at numerous colleges all around the United States. Plus, he has done unlimited improvs, conferences and special events.
“Our featured artist were Kevin Simpson, Sexy Marlo and Tony Sculfield with special host Joe Torry. Everybody that was there had a great time, including myself. So in the very near future when you hear and/or see anything that Good Time Entertainment Group is bringing to the city, join us so you too can have fun.
“Lots of people wonder where I get my financing to promote such shows, so I’ll just tell you. When it comes to events, we pay everything up front, not because we have to but because we want to, so we don’t owe anybody other than our investors. I have investors that I deal with on a daily basis and I also place ads to let potential investors know that I’m a local promoter and that I’ll give them 10 to 30 percent return on their investments. Usually, an investment is about $20,000 depending on the cost of the event and since I have a proven record of success, they’re more than happy to invest with us because they believe in me. I also make sure that all investors have a copy of the contract and I keep them in the loop of what’s going on. After the event is over they all receive their compensation and everybody’s happy. However, sometimes being in this business, things happen that are out of the promoters control and there’s nothing that can be done about it, other than, postpone the event and go for it.
“The reason I became a promoter is because I’m a people person and I love to see and make people laugh even though I‘m not a comedian. Everybody that knows me personally, will tell you that you can’t be around me without laughing, smiling and having some fun. For anyone that may be interested in becoming a promoter I suggest that you first figure out what your niche is and what you‘d like to promote because it’s a cutthroat industry out there. If it’s music, you must be very familiar with the type of music that you want to promote. I promote various music events from country, rock, African American events to Hispanic bands.
“Or, if it’s the comedian circuit that you want to promote then you must be very familiar with that too. Also, you’ll need to read a lot on dealing with event planning. It’s always good if you can tag along with a good promoter so you can see how it’s done and get your feet wet a little bit. From time to time, I take someone along with me when I’m doing my negotiations with the various venues or radio stations, so they can see what actually goes on because it’s not as easy as it appears to be. Also, you must build a good rapport with the entertainers’ agents because it’s very important in establishing your credibility and when you have proven yourselves by promoting successful events then the agents know that your money is good and they’ll give you some leniency. And, as long as, you present yourself as being fair and keep everything on the up and up, you should be successful.
“And, now I need you to know, this was not an easy road traveled by me. I was incarcerated and just recently got out, so I’ve paid my debt to society and I‘m making very positive moves for the better. I contribute some of my success to some individuals that I met during my incarceration because they had a very positive effect on my life as a promoter. They were also promoters, and they promoted a lot of A-list artist such as R. Kelley and the likes and since they knew that I was promoting small events here in the city, before my incarceration, they took me under their wings and pretty much taught me how to do a lot of things. Since then, I have proven myself to be trustworthy and my word is my bond. I stand on that and that’s how we move Good Times Entertainment Group.
“I really believe in what I do and that’s why I give it my all so it can grow and manifest into something really beautiful. And, I want to be an example to those that may have steered off the right path and veered over to the wrong path and have also been incarcerated. Because I don’t want them to feel that they have no options such as getting employment or starting their own business. I want to let them know it will be a struggle but they can overcome with great perseverance and meet adversity head on. And, they can go on to handle any challenges that may come their way. There are two quotes that I live by, the first is P.M.A. which stands for positive mental attitude and I stress that everyone keeps that and the second quote is, filter your thoughts of revenge and just say ‘hey’ because the greatest revenge is success.”
Now in closing I say, thank you Richard for sharing your story with us and I enjoyed listening to the beauty that Good Time Entertainment Group has brought and will continue to bring for our enjoyment. And, I also say thank you for caring enough to help others that are in need of your help. Also, I say thank you to the people that helped Richard to be the person that he is today. So until next week, you’ve been Up Close with Jeanie. Bye, bye babies.
P.S. If you would like The Spotlight shined upon you or someone that you know, on our journey of love, just send me an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. I’d love to hear from ya.
P.P.S. I’d also like to thank all of you who have been sending me e-mails to give me some feed back on our journey. Keep up the good work and to those who haven’t please feel free to do so because I’d love to hear from you too.