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Mobile trio pushes further into youth market
Posted: 20-Jan-2005 [Source: Cingular]

[Sony Ericsson, Cingular Wireless, and Sony Urban Music join up to find the latest hip-hop "supastar" and have his or her original tune converted into a mobile ringtone.]

Los Angeles -- Cingular Wireless, Sony Ericsson and SONY Urban Music announced the search for America's next Hip Hop SupaStar. Xzibit, the well-known Hip Hop artist who just released his fifth album, Weapons of Mass Destruction, and who is also the host of MTV's series "Pimp My Ride," will host the dynamic Hip Hop SupaStar contest in search of undiscovered Hip Hop artists from around the country. This once-in-a-lifetime opportunity will provide one grand-prize winner with the chance to record with SONY Urban Music. The ultimate winner will also receive a brand new car.

"Hip Hop SupaStar will present us with an important opportunity to introduce a new artist through the rapidly developing ringtone market," said Dino DelVaille, Senior Vice President of A&R, SONY Urban Music. "As we enter into music's newest era, we are searching for artists with strong vision and a creative delivery of their self expression -- someone who defines what Hip Hop is all about. The winner will be someone with an authentic, unique style who can connect with the Hip Hop community in a way that's both real and fun."

Artists interested in entering the contest will submit an original song from which SONY Urban Music executives will select ten finalists. These 10 finalists will have the unprecedented opportunity to showcase their original music to the masses by having their entry converted into a mobile ringtone. Hip Hop fans across the nation can vote for their favorite ringtone by sending a text message from their mobile handset, ultimately deciding who will be crowned Hip Hop SupaStar.

Throughout the contest, select finalists will have a chance to perform during Xzibit's concert tour presented by Cingular Wireless and Sony Ericsson as it visits select cities across the United States throughout March and April 2005.

Entries to be the next Hip Hop SupaStar are being accepted now through February 4, 2005. Contestants can enter by sending in a CD/tape with an original song. All details on how to enter, including the application, contest rules and eligibility requirements, can be found at http://www.HipHopSupaStar.com . Cingular customers and other carrier customers can get the latest Hip Hop SupaStar alerts sent right to their phone by sending the word "SUPA" via text message to HSTAR (47827). As part of the contest, Cingular customers will also have access to a Hip Hop SupaStar ringtone gift card with the purchase of select SONY BMG CDs at Best Buy retail locations.

The 10 finalists will be announced February 15th and voting for the next Hip Hop SupaStar will take place from February 15th through April 10th via text message to HSTAR (47827). Voting instructions and ringtone previews will be available online at http://www.HipHopSupaStar.com . The Hip Hop SupaStar winner will be announced in mid-April. Additional information on the 10 finalists and concert tour dates will be announced in early February.

"The Hip Hop SupaStar contest provides a unique opportunity for up and coming Hip Hop artists to compete for the chance to record with SONY Urban Music, as well as have their original song transformed into a ringtone for Cingular wireless consumers to download and hear every time their phone rings," said Frances Britchford, Vice President of Marketing for Sony Ericsson. "We are committed to reaching out to Hip Hop enthusiasts and this partnership with Cingular Wireless and SONY Urban Music allows us to do so through music and mobile ringtones, in a way that is relevant to them."

"Cingular is always looking for ways to raise the bar with unique, fun and dynamic programs that speak to the youth market and their love of wireless," said Dave Garver, Executive Director of National Acquisition for Cingular Wireless. "Many of our customers identify with and embrace the Hip Hop culture, which is why we are thrilled to team with SONY Urban Music and Sony Ericsson to make wireless technology the stage to showcase and discover these promising Hip Hop artists and their original music."

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