Throughout his career as an artist, manager and record label CEO, Russell Simmons has known the power of the mic and when to take advantage of it. On Thursday (January 24), while introducing Jay-Z and R. Kelly at a press conference for their joint album, Best of Both Worlds (see "R. Kelly, Jay-Z Join Forces To Record Album"), the multimedia kingpin seized the opportunity to announce his latest venture, Life Beat's Urban Aid 2 benefit show.
The concert, scheduled for April 9 at New York's Beacon Theatre, is set to feature some of the biggest names in hip-hop and R&B to help raise funds and awareness for HIV prevention initiatives among young people.
Although the show's complete lineup has not been announced, Simmons let it be known that Jay and Kelly will be the headliners for the event and that P. Diddy, who was also in attendance at the press conference, will perform as well. Urban Aid 2 will be broadcast live on BET. (MTV's parent company, Viacom, also owns BET.)
Besides the musical acts, celebrities will also reach out to viewers and audience members, informing them about how to avoid contracting the disease. They will also solicit donations.
Simmons and Diddy are the co-chairmen for this event.
The first Urban Aid was held in 1995 and featured performances by Notorious B.I.G. and Wu-Tang Clan.