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Ray Chandler, Founder

For many years, Ray Chandler has been an advocate for the preservation of strong family values. Ray learned at a very early age the importance of sharing and giving. His parents were strong individuals who taught all of their children the value of being givers and of service. Over the years, Ray has been actively involved in a multitude of youth initiatives. He has worked on the New York City Mayor John Linsay’s Office Gang Task Force and inside the New York City public school system where he acted as an advocate against gang activity and truancy.

In this capacity, Ray was able to reach out to many street gangs members. The kids were drawn to Ray’s impressive personality and down to earth appeal. He was able to convince young boys and girls to leave the gang life behind to pursue productive goals. Ray has been a strong mentor to young adults and has helped many of the tem enroll in trade schools that offer job training and GED diplomas. Ray literally has saved many lives by steering kids away from illegal activity and pursue their dreams. Ray knew that the kids needed a way to socialize in a positive way and opened a teen club in the south Bronx called “The Black Door”. At the club, the kids could enjoy music and dance, as their peers performed the popular music of the time called Hip Hop. It was at this time when he discovered and managed rap legends Grandmaster Flash & the Furious Five.

Realizing the popularity of this new form of music, Ray’s entrepreneurial skills kicked in. He went to the public schools and was able to show students how to generate additional funding for their extra-curricular interests. He taught them how to earn money by putting on talent shows that featured their rap and dance skills. He was given exclusive permission to present these shows inside school gymnasiums and auditoriums. Ray hired rap groups and charged a nominal entrance fee. Part of the proceeds earned were donated to the schools to support sports and music programs where needed. Ray also created and hosted rap clinics for aspiring artists. This project worked out well for the schools, the community, and the kids. Ray is the recipient of many plaques and awards honoring him for his support of the New York City public school system.

Every year Ray gathered the men in his neighborhood to host summer basketball tournaments. These events were entirely funded from their own personal money. These monies provided uniforms, sports equipment, and trophies for the participating teams. Ray also organized clothing drives, food drives, and an amazing free annual summer picnic for families in the neighborhood. By soliciting corporations and local businesses, enough money was raised to feed several hundred people free of charge. Ray has also donated his time, and expertise to the Police Athletic League (PAL), and North Central Bronx Hospital basketball program, where young adults come together to participate in team sports.

Charles Leake, President

A tenured, talented, and respected concert promoter and former rap artist, Charles Leake, has over three decades of experience in the business. Charles Leake’s career in concert promotions began in 1978. At that time, Charles was known as “MC Charlie Rock”, one of the original members of the rap group the Original Harlem World Crew. The group was named after the world famous nightclub, Harlem World Cultural and Entertainment Complex, formally located on 116th Street & Lenox Avenue in Harlem, NY. Charles developed promotional strategies that helped drive the club to great heights of popularity and fame. In fact, Harlem World was considered the mecca of the Hip-Hop and Rap movement until its closing in 1985.

During these years on the ground floor of the burgeoning new musical genre called Hip Hop, Charles immersed himself into the industry. In the company of up and coming moguls like Russell Simmons and Andre Harrell, Charles refined his natural analytical ability and organizational skills. Charles played a key role in the formation of platinum recording artists Doug E. Fresh, Slick Rick, and The Force MDs. Shortly thereafter, he crossed paths with another impresario, Ray Chandler, who was at the time the manager of famed rap group, Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five. The two gentlemen teamed up and founded Heart & Soul Productions and have built it into one of the top concert promotion companies in New York City.

Charles has an unwavering desire to work hard and serve fans of a variety of music types, including his first love, R&B soul classics. With gritty determination and the ability to handle events of multiple genres, a Charles Leake promotion is always a sophisticated affair. He has worked with many top artists in world class venues such as Manhattan Center and Roseland Ballroom in NY; and DeSoto Civic Center in Tennessee to name a few. The long list of performers Charles has worked with includes: The Stylistics, Harold Melvin’s Blue Notes, The Intruders, The Persuaders, The Escorts, The Delfonics, Blue Magic, Meli’sa Morgan, The Chi-Lites, Alyson Williams, Ray, Goodman & Brown, and many more.

Although Charles’ schedule is a busy one, he still finds time to volunteer his services at Body Sculpt of New York’s Children's Health and Fitness Expo by participating in sports clinics, walkathons, and fitness workshops. The Expo focuses on the concerns of childhood obesity, healthy eating, general nutrition, education, and unity of the entire family. Forever young at heart, Charles easily connects with young adults and is willing to share with them his knowledge and experience with entrepreneurship. He stresses dedication, and the importance of serving others in the process of reaching goals, going to the next level, and beyond.

charlesleake@rcahas.com (646) 397-7182
President /Promoter
Charles M. Leake

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