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VH1 Pays Homage to Hip Hop's Biggest Legends and Visionaries With Its Third Annual 'VH1 Hip Hop Honors'

They Came, They Saw, They Conquered and Took the Hip Hop Nation by Storm

Mayor Bloomberg, VH1's General Manager Tom Calderone, Russell Simmons, Ice-T and NYC Big Events President Maureen J. Reidy Announce First-Ever Hip Hop Honors Week In Connection With VH1's Annual 'Hip Hop Honors' Show

NEW YORK, March 31 /PRNewswire/ -- Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, VH1 General Manager Tom Calderone, and NYC Big Events President Maureen J. Reidy announced today the first-ever "VH1 Hip Hop Honors Week" in connection with the 3rd annual "VH1 Hip Hop Honors," which will be held again in New York City. Hip hop impresario and 2006 honoree Russell Simmons and rap legend/Law & Order star and host of this year's "VH1 Hip Hop Honors" Ice T were also on hand for the announcement at City Hall today. The VH1-created and pioneered awards special honors hip hop's pioneers and luminaries who have transformed this musical genre into a cultural phenomenon. Since its inception, New York City has served as the inaugural host city to launch this special event and concert.

This year's honorees include Wu-Tang Clan, Afrika Bambaataa, Russell Simmons, MC Lyte, Rakim, Beastie Boys and Eazy E. The music and influence of each of the honorees will be recognized through performances by classic artists in collaboration with today's hottest new talent. The star-studded event is slated to take place at the famed Hammerstein Ballroom on Saturday, October 7, 2006 and will be broadcast on VH1 on Tuesday, October 17, 2006 at 8PM*.

"Hip hop music was born right here in our City," said Mayor Bloomberg. "During our first ever 'VH1 Hip Hop Honors' Week New Yorkers will have exciting new opportunities to celebrate an art form that has influenced generations and reached the farthest corners of the world. For the past two years, VH1 has paid tribute to hip hop's original pioneers through 'Hip Hop Honors.' They've chosen New York City as a host and partner in that tribute and we're proud to welcome them back."

"Hip hop music defines entire generations," said VH1 General Manager Calderone. "VH1 believes in the power of the genre, and 'Hip Hop Honors' is our homage to those seminal artists that defined this cultural phenomenon. The artists we're honoring this year have made incalculable contributions to the worlds of music, fashion, art and popular culture. We are thrilled to have the opportunity to celebrate all their accomplishments."

"New York City is proud to host the first-ever 'Hip Hop Honors Week' which will celebrate the revolutionary impact and influence of hip hop music on New York," said NYC Big Events President Reidy. "For one week, hip hop history will be highlighted in the City's five boroughs through a number of promotions in partnership with local retailers, sports teams, and other cultural institutions."

VH1, headquartered in New York City, has staged many of its special events in New York City - most recently collaborating with NYC Big Events to produce the 2005 "VH1 Save the Music" Benefit Concert. Utilizing the NYC Big Events business model, a series of events and promotions will be scheduled in all five boroughs in the months and weeks leading up to the "VH1 Hip Hop Honors."

Hip Hop Honors Week will kick off on Thursday, October 12 with Education Day, where famed hip hop artists will work with kids in New York City's public schools. Day two, Friday, will be Restaurant Day during which restaurants in all five boroughs will feature special discounts and promotions and play hip hop music throughout the week. On Music and Culture Day - Saturday, October 14 - hip hop artists and DJs will perform in clubs citywide, and New Yorkers will be able to enjoy special events and promotions at City's famed cultural organizations. Sunday, October 15 will be Sports and Parks Day, when hip hop legends will take the field and join the famous New York City sports scene. New Yorkers can look forward to fun activities connected to our local sports teams that which will offer fans the opportunity to get up and close with their favorite stars. On Monday, October 16- Fashion and Shopping Day - New Yorkers will find exciting events in the fashion community where hip hop has set trends and become a global craze. And, finally, 'VH1 Hip Hop Honors" Week will end with "Hip Hop Honors" Day on Tuesday, October 17, when viewers can tune in to VH1 and see Ice-T host the broadcast of the 3rd Annual "VH1 Hip Hop Honors. "

This year's "VH1 Hip Hop Honors" will be executive produced by Lee Rolontz for VH1 and Jac Benson for Blacjac Entertainment. Co-executive producers are Nelson George and Fab 5 Freddy. Louis J. Horvitz will direct.

VSPOT at VH1.com (http://vspot/vh1.com) -- VH1's broadband channel -- will have exclusive and original coverage of all the events related to the event.

VH1 connects viewers to the music, artists and pop culture that matter to them most with series, specials, live events, exclusive online content and public affairs initiatives. VH1 is available in 87 million households in the U.S. VH1 also has an array of digital services including VH1 Classic, VH1 Soul, VH Uno and VH1 Country. Connect with VH1 at http://www.vh1.com/.

NYC Big Events, Inc. is the City's official organization dedicated to attracting high-profile events, creating new ones and working with existing major New York City events. NYC Big Events' most recent successes include the 2005 Country Music Association Awards, Worldwide Premiere of Peter Jackson's King Kong in Times Square, the 2005 VH1 Save the Music Benefit Concert, the 2004 Republican National Convention, and recently announced the return of the upcoming MTV Video Music Awards to New York City, in August 2006.

VSPOT at VH1.com (http://vspot/vh1.com) -- VH1's broadband channel -- brings you the richest music and pop-culture content while it's happening: live events, series sneak peeks, celeb Q&A's, movie trailers, in-studio performances and original series, not to mention thousands of music videos, customizable playlists and artist interviews. We never miss a beat.

*all times ET/PT


Tracy McGraw

Toni Herron

Scott Acord

Silvia Alvarez
City Hall

Source: VH1

CONTACT: Tracy McGraw, +1-212-846-7879, or Toni Herron, +1-212-846-7528,
or Scott Acord, +1-310-752-8075, all of VH1; or Silvia Alvarez, City Hall,

Web site: http://www.vh1.com/

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