R.I.P. Clarence Avant, Godfather of Black Leisure (1931-2023) | Tributes

BEVERLY HILLS, CA – FEBRUARY 09: (L-R) Alex Avant, Jacqueline Avant, Clarence Avant, Nicole Avant, and Ted Sarandos attend the Pre-GRAMMY Gala and GRAMMY Salute to Trade Icons Honoring Clarence Avant at The Beverly Hilton Lodge on February 9, 2019 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photograph by Michael Kovac/Getty Pictures for The Recording Academy)

After I say legend, it’s inside the dictionary definition: one who is legendary and well-known for doing extraordinary issues in their subject. The ironic factor is that folks inside these fields generally mentioned they did not know precisely what Clarence Avant did, what his title was, or how he did it, however the outcomes spoke for themselves. I got here throughout him not solely on this planet of leisure, however on this planet of politics the place he raised cash for former Presidents Invoice Clinton and Barack Obama. He additionally helped Muhammad Ali, Hank Aaron, Jim Brown and different sports activities figures. Invoice Withers mentioned that he supplied the massive transition from his life as an expert air craft mechanic to being wanted within the music world.  

The report labels that Mr. Avant based within the Nineteen Sixties and 70s have been accountable for releasing the work of trailblazing artists together with Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis in addition to Invoice Withers. He additionally gained a popularity for being a sought-after mentor and guide to such giants as Irving Azoff, Jheryl Busby, Sean Combs, Snoop Dogg, Kenny “Babyface” Edmonds, Jamie Foxx, David Geffen, Whitney Houston, Reginald Hudlin, Jimmy Iovine, Jay-Z, Quincy Jones, Queen Latifah, Jon Platt, Antonio “L.A.” Reid, Sylvia Rhone, Lionel Richie, Pharrell Williams and plenty of others. 

For his extraordinary work on this planet of music he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Corridor of Fame by Lionel Richie in 2021, and the video they put collectively to introduce him stays one among my favorites. (See Under.)

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He additionally obtained a star on the Hollywood Stroll of Fame for his contributions.

HOLLYWOOD, CA – OCTOBER 07: Music Govt Clarence Avant attends a ceremony honoring him with a star on the Hollywood Stroll of Fame on October 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photograph by Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Pictures)