971 Entertainment Group, Inc.
A boutique record label, multimedia, management and branding company initiated as a joint venture in the UAE that led to establishing its corporate head office in Montreal, Canada with representatives in Dubai, New York and Toronto.
971 Entertainment Group, Inc., is a multifaceted entertainment company that is constantly developing its production capabilities to promote the music, videos and films of the artists and creative talent it represents. We provide a new approach for artists who want creative control of their projects that are disillusioned with the politics and red tape of the entertainment industry.
The new generation of music-makers is proving that artists of today are providing their own financial backing and investing in their own careers. The artist remains in control and with the support of our team of seasoned industry professionals, we will create and implement well thought-out marketing campaigns via a comprehensive partnership with major U.S. and international distributors, promotional firms and the artists to expose their talent, product and brand throughout North America, the MENA region and other global markets.
Kevin Bassett - President & Chief Executive Officer
Mr. Bassett is a native of New York City. He started in the music business as a backup guitarist working with renown artists such as Chaka Khan, Aretha Franklin, Lionel Richie, Luther Vandross and Pattie Labelle to name a few. In the early 80's Mr. Bassett and his group Kinky Foxx was approached by Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff where the band recorded for Philadelphia International Records.
In 1982, Mr. Bassett and his band Kinky Foxx caught the attention of Fred Petrus, President and CEO of Little Macho Records who recorded Luther Vandross (The group called Change) original Hit song “Searching”. Subsequently later that year, Mr. Bassett met CEO and founder of Sound of New York Records, Gene Griffin that signed Kinky Foxx who’s Hit record “So Different” reached #2 on the Funk UK Billboard Charts.
Having traveled the world Mr. Bassett has worked with labels such as Rock Records Taiwan, Sony Records Taiwan, GMM Grammy Thailand and Yoshimoto Entertainment Japan. In 2006, Mr. Bassett decided to move to Dubai where he quickly became highly sought after for his extensive experience in producing, engineering and as a studio designer. He has established a strong reputation within the UAE entertainment industry and has had the opportunity to produce several local artists.
Mr. Bassett had served as Managing Director of Creative Kingdom Records an affiliate of Sony/BMG based in South Africa where he dealt with the day to day operations of the company and A&R in Dubai.
As C.E.O. of 971 Entertainment Group Inc., he takes a hands-on approach to every aspect of the business from the creative to working with his team. Mr. Bassett is currently managing the artist DD Foxx.
Curtis Patterson - Chief Operating Officer
Oversees the day-to-day operations of the company from the signing of an artist through the marketing and sales of the music in North America and abroad, and direction over administration and human resources concerns. He's consistently analyzing market trends and capitalizing on global market opportunities for 971 and its artists.
Mr. Patterson is also the President and founder of Entertainment Central based in Montreal, Quebec with an associated office in Hong Kong and Morocco. The agency is one of the premiere suppliers of live entertainment for casinos, theatres, festivals, 5 star hotels and corporate events internationally. Website: www.entertainmentcentral.ca
He has created and mounted musical productions for various charitable foundations helping to raise funds for a host of worthy causes. As a former touring musician he has shared the stage with Celine Dion, The Commodores, George Clinton & The Funkadelics, The Temptations, Chris De Burgh and The Isley Brothers among others. Mr. Patterson is an a active voting CARAS Academy Delegate for the Juno Awards, Canada's equivalent to the Grammy Awards.
Darren Johnson - Senior Vice President
A visionary Operation Executive with solid experience managing all levels of multiple projects, including budgeting and administration as well as a host of other tasks. Core Accomplishments - Managed operations, handled all functions related to projects and staff development, launched well-received programs of professional courses for all staff. Mentored and coached artists and employees, which produced a 50% increase in productivity with contracting and negotiating.
Mr. Johnson has managed Grammy Award winning Producer Stevie J (Beyonce, Mariah Carey, Jay Z, Bad Boys Records, Love & Hip Hop) and the group “Boss Players”, in which he secured a deal with Clive Davis and RCA Music Group. Other business affiliations include the likes of Jay-Z, Notorious B.I.G and as manager of producer Kidd Kold where he landed two songs on the movie soundtrack “Against the Ropes” with the artist D.M.X. for Universal Records.
He’s also the owner of DMJ Management (New York). Represented the artist Ericka June in which the productivity resulted in placing her song "Work the Middle" on the soundtrack with Atlantic Records for the movie “Step Up 3” (Touchstone Pictures/Disney). Mr. Johnson has worked with AJM Records where he solicited artists and producers for the label and sought out Pitbull and Flow Rida to be featured on the Ashanti CD, “The Vault”.
Layal El Halabi - Executive Vice President
Graduated with distinction, holding a Bachelor of Science in Hospitality and Tourism Management at the Lebanese American University (LAU) 2007, she went back to Dubai after being offered a position of Marketing and Communications Executive for Metito, a leading water treatment, recycling and desalination company based in Dubai where she worked for 2 years. At Metito she was responsible for the Marketing and PR departments. While at the company Ms. El Halabi prepared 3 annual Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) reports for the United Nations Global Compact.
Having a passion towards the Entertainment field and public speaking, Ms. El Halabi secured every opportunity hosting numerous corporate events, product launches and ceremonies for such brands as Samsung, Disney Channel, Emirates Airline, Mubadala, MasterCard, amongst others. Ms. El Halabi continues to strive with passion and eagerness to succeed and shine as a unique Public Speaker in the entertainment market.
While being a partner of 971 Entertainment Group, Inc. she also pursues her first love which is music under the alias of DD Foxx.
Mohamad Bassem El Halabi - Partner
Mr. El Halabi is the Group Business Development Director for Metito Overseas Ltd. based in Dubai. His key qualification, background includes international sales and business development skills, managing GMs in different countries, strong ability in Project Management and a wide experience in the process and mechanical design pertaining to water and wastewater treatment systems and plants. He has a degree in Bachelor of Science, Mechanical Engineering and is a Chartered Mechanical Engineer.
His responsibilities at Metito Overseas Ltd. are to carry out comprehensive market surveys in the assigned territories and sectors to identify the market trends and requirements, develop new markets and territories, devise and implement a structured marketing plan setting short and long term objectives, overview the Chemical Division operations and devise plans and strategies for growth.