Honey Jam Barbados Directors

Ebonnie Rowe, CEO, Honey Jam (Barbados) Inc.

Throughout her career, Barbadian-Canadian Ebonnie Rowe has distinguished herself as someone dedicated to the growth of others and the support of charitable causes. She credits the values taught to her by her parents and her teachers at Merrivale and Queen’s College with instilling in her the values she has carried through her life. Ebonnie has founded and directed organizations that cater to the needs of some of society’s overlooked groups – In Canada she started the Each One, Teach One mentoring program for Black Youth and PhemPhat Entertainment Group, a dynamic, all-female non- profit company that provides promotional and educational opportunities for upcoming female artists and to support and promote women’s charities. In Barbados she worked for years producing the Fun Run for Auntie Olga’s Needy Children’s Fund. Listed in the Who’s Who of Canadian Women, Ebonnie’s work has earned her many awards, including a Special Achievement Award from the Urban Music Association of Canada, an Ontario Volunteerism Award and the prestigious YWCA's Women of Distinction Award for Arts & Entertainment.

While Ebonnie was studying English literature at the University of Toronto, a friend of hers committed suicide. The loss was devastating; it made her realize the shortness of life, the silent despair suffered by many, and fuelled her need to do something that meant something and would leave a significant legacy. Determined to have a constructive influence on the lives of others, she left University to co-found and direct a mentorship program, Each One Teach One, which matched black youth with black professionals.

Honey Jam Canada came into existence after she produced a radio special on Canada’s largest Hip Hop radio show in 1994 to discuss how women were portrayed in Hip Hop lyrics and videos after complaints from her female Each One Teach One mentees. As a result, she was asked to edit an all-female edition of Mic Check magazine. The celebration party for that issue in 1995, intended to be a one-off show, was called “Honey Jam.” The success of the show pointed to a void in the artistic community and over the last 18 years Honey Jam Canada has grown to become a much-anticipated annual multicultural showcase of upcoming artists in all genres of music, where talents such as Nelly Furtado were discovered. Ebonnie introduced the concept to Barbados in 2011 and is excited to continue providing performance, promotion, mentoring and educational opportunities to female artists and charitable causes on the island.

AWARDS

  • Manifesto Toronto Arts Festival Pioneer Award, 2011

  • Nominated for Chatelaine’s Woman of the Year, 2011

  • Canadian Black Business & Professional Association Woman of Honour Award, 2011

  • Recipient of Black Pearls Cultured Pearl Award for Community Involvement, 2009

  • "Mille Femmes 2008” - 1 of 1000 women photographed by Parisian photographer Pierre Maraval from allartistic fields. Co-produced by Luminato and Lancôme, the exhibit captured inspirational women who embody the passion, heritage & inspiration behind Toronto's artistic community.

  • University of Toronto, Black Alumni Association Award for Arts and Culture, 2005

  • YWCA Woman of Distinction Award, 2005

  • Nominated for Best Promoter by Urban Music Association of Canada, 2001, 2002, 2003

  • Special Achievement Award, Urban Music Association of Canada, 2000

  • Volunteerism Award, Province of Ontario 1997

  • Phenomenal Woman Award from Exclusive Entertainment, 1997

  • Community Service Award, Ryerson African Canadian Organization, 1996

  • Listed in Who's Who of Canadian Women since 1996, also listed in Who’s Who of Black Canada

  • Toronto Sun Woman on the Move Award, November, 1995 

Paul Russell, former Worldwide Chairman of Sony/ATV Director Honey Jam Barbados

Paul Russell qualified as a Solicitor in 1969 and has acted as an entertainment lawyer for amongst others, the Moody Blues, Led Zeppelin, and their late manager Peter Grant. Paul joined CBS UK in December 1973 as Director, Business Affairs.

In March 1976 he moved to New York to take a number of International positions culminating in his becoming Vice President, Administration CBS Records International. At this time he was instrumental in bringing Julio Iglesias to CBS records and was responsible for commencing the operations of CBS Music Publishing Internationally.

In August 1979 he was promoted to Managing Director, CBS Australia, based in Sydney, signing a number of highly successful acts including Men At Work and Midnight Oil who went on to achieve enormous international success.

In March 1982 he returned to England to become Managing Director, CBS Records UK. He was appointed Chief Executive Officer in June 1985 and Chairman in December 1989. During this time the Company successfully developed an exceptional roster of local artists including Des’ree, Terence Trent D’Arby, Jamiroquai, George Michael, Alison Moyet, Sade, Wham! and Paul Young amongst others, all of whom were also developed into outstanding international success. The CBS label as it was then known prior to its name change to Columbia throughout the Eighties, was the number one albums label in the industry. In 1985 the company made an unprecedented clean sweep of the local BRIT Awards (Best Male, Female, Group and Album) with four different acts Paul Young Alison Moyet, Wham! and Sade respectively.

In 1987, the Sony Corporation purchased CBS Records from CBS Inc. and the company was renamed Sony Music Entertainment.

Subsequently, Paul Russell oversaw and directed innumerable changes in the UK Company including the establishment of the S2 label in 1990 and in 1992 he set up the newly forged Licensed Repertoire Division by forming a partnership with Alan McGee’s Creation label. He oversaw developments at the company’s Manufacturing and Distribution facilities in Aylesbury; significant changes at the Company’s Studios in Whitfield Street, and the acquisition of the largest shareholding in Kenneth Branagh’s Renaissance Films PLC (of which the 1992 film “Peter’s Fiends” was the third most successful British film of that year.)

He was a member of the BPI council from 1985-1992 and played a key role in many industry issues. He pioneered the BPI’s initial involvement in the BRITS school in Croydon in 1990. He was Chairman of the BRIT Awards for four years (1989 to 1992), brought the current executive producer Lisa Anderson to the BRITS organisation in 1992 and helped establish the BRITS Trust, where until 1996 he acted as a trustee.

Paul Russell was appointed President, Sony Music Entertainment Europe, in January 1993 and subsequently grew and substantially expanded the Division’s many operating bases in the region. In that time four new Companies were set up –Turkey, South Africa, Poland and Russia and he oversaw a significant growth in the A&R platforms including the expansion of LRD now called SINE (Sony Music Independent Network Europe) with its network of labels including, amongst others, Big Brother (Oasis), Andy McDonald’s Independiente label (Travis) and Skint (Fat Boy Slim.)

Sony Music Entertainment Europe, part of Sony Music International, had its headquarters in London and operated in 22 different territories throughout the European region. It employed over 2,500 people. As Europe developed into a region with revenues of 12.8 billion dollars, Sony Music Entertainment Europe, under Paul Russell, enjoyed much success with a wide variety of international artists including, Frances Cabrel, Jean Jacque Goldman, Mariah Carey, Des’ree, Celine Dion, Gloria Estefan, the Fugees, Macy Gray, Gipsy Kings, Julio Iglesias, Jamiroquai, Patrica Kaas, the Manic Street Preachers, Ricky Martin, Oasis, Frances Obispo, the Offspring, Sade, Savage Garden, Bruce Springsteen, Suede and Travis. He worked very closely, in both the UK and Europe, with Michael Jackson in many different areas – from his records “Thriller”, “Bad”, ”Dangerous”, the six times European platinum “HISstory” and “Blood In the Dancefloor” through to his record breaking European tours in 1988, 1992 and 1996/7.

In January 2000, Paul Russell returned to New York as Senior Vice President, Sony Music Entertainment Inc, and also as worldwide Chairman of Sony ATV, the company’s Music Publishing Division. During this period, he oversaw the re-organisation of Sony ATV and led the acquisition and integration of the legendary Nashville base Acuff Rose Publishing Company (Roy Orbison, Everly Brothers, Hank Williams, etc, which Sony ATV acquired for $157 Million in September 2002. Before Paul left Sony after 30 years at the end of 2003 he brought multi platinum new artiste Katie Melua to the company.

In 2005 Paul formed R2M Music with co-founders Richard Rowe (former president of SonyATV) and Phil May (former Head of Worldwide Admin SonyATV). Since 2005 he was involved in the acquisition and amalgamation of 19 separate publishing catalogues. R2M Music was sold to German multi media company Bertlesman in 2012.

Paul Russell has a house in Barbados and has been a long term supporter of Ebonnie Rowe and Honey Jam Barbados, participating in the auditions as a Judge as well as sharing his wealth of knowledge about the industry at the workshops . In February 2013 Paul joined Ebonnie in the incorporation of Honey Jam (Barbados) Inc. where is currently a Director of the Board.