Please tell us where you’re from and what got you on your path to working in entertainment?
I grew up in Kansas City (MO), but I was born in Topeka, Kansas. I was exposed to entertainment through my father, Carl Price Sr., who was one of the original black radio DJ’s in the country. During the Civil Rights era radio connected everyone with what was really going on. Black DJ’s were viewed as celebrities and part of their job was to keep everyone abreast of the hot social issues of the day. My dad also had an entertainment magazine that he and my mother put out, and during that time, a lot of entertainers could not stay in the better hotels after their performances, no many of them stayed at our house. People like Frankie Lymon, R&B singer Ruth Brown, and even Wilt “the Silt” Chamberlain would always visit.
My grandfather was also the first Black Dentist in Kansas and his good fiends were actress, Hattie McDaniel, and poet, Langston Hughes. My Uncle owned and ran a record store and his best friend was Jazz great, Jay McShane. Our family was touched by the arts from all directions, whether it was music, literature, thought, theatre, or dance. I was just a baby but this is what I was exposed to on a daily basis, and watching my older brothers carry on the family tradition, I eventually picked up the desire to pursue the business of entertainment.
You started out in music; how did you get into television?
I grew up singing and dancing, and was very good at it, I might add. [laughs] I sang in several bands and traveled overseas meeting lots of wonderful people. I enjoyed singing, but I was not happy with the business end. I had a hard time finding a good manager who would work for my best interests; instead, I always got stuck with managers who were untrustworthy when it came to money. I felt very vulnerable and I often ran into other women who were experiencing the same things on the road. Even though I loved the music, the fans, and the travel, I knew that there had to be some changes.
My mother was full of grace, and told me to always have something to fall back on. So I decided to go to college in between gigs and get a degree in Communications from the University of Missouri Kansas City, as well as a degree in music from the Conservatory of Music. My father was a visionary. He always said that communication is key and it would take me far, and he was so right. A friend of mine who worked at a local TV station told me about a job opening in Master Control. It happened to be in the dead of winter and the weather was getting a little crazy out. My appointment was for 1pm on New Year’s Eve and my dad told me he was going to pick me up and get me to the interview. So when I arrived, the manager said he was trying to call me because of a pending ice storm and they were closing early. My dad told him that it didn’t matter because we were going to come, regardless. The Manager laughed, shook my dad’s hand and said, “You got the job!” I worked various jobs at the station, like Master Control, Production, Promotions and Traffic.
I still maintained my music connections and worked with record labels doing independent promotions, tracking, and handling vinyl. I also did hospitality when entertainers would came to town (Kansas City). I’d prepare their meet & greets, transportation, and sometimes food. I had complimentary tickets to almost every major concert or sports event in town. Today, everything is controlled by major corporations, so smaller consultants were basically squeezed out.
What made you want to start your own entertainment company?
After working in TV broadcasting at the FOX and NBC affiliates for over a decade, I went to work at the Kansas City Star, Gannett Outdoors, and then Trendwest (who owned Camelot music). I had amassed a great deal of skill sets working at these various companies which gave me the knowledge I needed to succeed in my own business. So I eventually got tired of working for other people and dealing with crazy managers, lateral promotions and small raises, and decided to go back to my family roots of being an entrepreneur.
As the Executive Producer of Urban American Outdoors, what do you do and what’s the TV show about?
I am the CEO and Executive Producer of “Urban American Outdoors”, the first multicultural Outdoors Lifestyle TV show. Wayne Hubbard is the Producer/Host, and an avid outdoorsman. We came up with the original concept in the fall of 1999, and shortly thereafter we filmed the pilot and several more episodes of the show. Then, one Monday in 2003, we decide to send out a screener to a few friends in the industry, and by Thursday we had received a couple of contracts to air our show. Since that time, Urban American Outdoors has been airing weekly on cable networks across the U.S.
FACTS ABOUT URBAN AMERICAN OUTDOORS:
*Won over 50 broadcast industry awards