LOS ANGELES, Feb. 25, 2009â€”Ronald â€œSlimâ€ Williams and Bryan â€œBabyâ€ Williams, the brothers who started the famed record label Cash Money in the New Orleans projects and went on to sell more than 45 million albums, will be among the subjects of the CNBC Original, NEWBOs: The Rise of America’s New Black Overclass, which premieres on the cable network, Thursday, Feb. 26, at 9 p.m. and 1 a.m. (ET).
The one-hour documentary spotlights the growing wave of young black multimillionaires coming out of the sports, media and entertainment fields as well as the rise of NEWBOs, those young black athletes, entertainers and entrepreneurs who are having a profound, positive effect on their peers. The special, hosted by Wall Street Journal reporter and CNBC correspondent Lee Hawkins, who coined the term NEWBO for the â€œNew Black Overclass,â€ is based on his soon-to-be-published book of the same title.
In addition to the Williams brothers, the special offers behind-the-scenes stories on NBA superstar LeBron James, baseball player Torii Hunter, Dallas Cowboysâ€™ Terrell Owens, BET founder Bob Johnson, gospel star Kirk Franklin and musician/entrepreneur Wyclef Jean.
Cash Money recently celebrated the success of multi-Grammy-award winner Lil Wayneâ€™s Tha Carter III, which debuted on the charts last June, selling more than one million albums in its first week, and is now over 3 million as 2008â€™s top seller. The hip-hop icon, who has been associated with the Williamsâ€™ Cash Money label since he was a teenager in the legendary group Hot Boys with B.G., Juvenile and Turk, led the field with eight Grammy nominations, taking home a total of four awards: Best Rap Album, Best Rap Solo Performance, Best Rap Performance by a Duo or Group, and Best Rap Song. His next album, Rebirth, is slated for release April 7, with the first single, â€œProm Queen,â€ already climbing the charts.
Cash Money recently marked the 10th anniversary of its groundbreaking deal with Universal Music Group, which over the years has produced hit albums by Juvenile, B.G., Turk, Big Tymers, Mannie Fresh, Hot Boys and Baby/Birdman, two of Bryan Williamsâ€™ hip-hop alter egos. Bryan will release a new Baby album this year. The labelâ€™s latest success story is its first-ever rock signing, Kevin Rudolf, whose first single, â€œLet It Rock,â€ featuring Lil Wayne, was #1 Most Added at Top 40, an iTunes and ringtone smash, with more than three million downloads and major airplay at stations such as New Yorkâ€™s Z100 and L.A.â€™s KIIS.