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The Otis Redding Foundation is proud to announce that songwriter, award-winning producer, DJ, CEO of So So Def, and entrepreneur Jermaine Dupri will be honored with the Otis & Zelma Redding Award of Respect at the highly anticipated 2nd Annual King of Soul Music Festival. Taking place in Macon, GA on September 8-9, the festival serves as a vibrant celebration of the incomparable legacy of Otis Redding, coinciding with what would have been his 82ND birthday on September 9. The event is a fundraiser for the new Otis Redding Center for The Arts. "We are thrilled to honor Jermaine Dupri at this year's King of Soul Music Festival," said Karla Redding-Andrews, Vice President and Executive Director of the Otis Redding Foundation. “We have known JD since he was a young man visiting the Big ‘O’ Ranch with his Dad and are so proud of his remarkable contributions to the music industry as a songwriter, award-winning producer, DJ, CEO of So So Def and entrepreneur. He was very close to my brother, Otis III, who passed away in April, and credits him with teaching him to make beats. JD aligns with Otis Redding’s spirit and the Foundation’s mission to inspire and empower young artists.” “The Reddings and Otis III became my musical family before the world knew of Jermaine Dupri,” stated Jermaine. “While I understand the family is honoring me, in my mind, I am also honoring them for all they have allowed me to do, see and be a part of at a time when they didn't have to." The festivities will kick off on Friday, September 8, with "An Evening of Respect" concert featuring the renowned Orchestra Noir at the historic Macon City Auditorium. Founded in 2016, Orchestra Noir has captivated audiences nationwide with its spectacular performances that pay homage to the cultural achievements of African American music pioneers across various genres, including classical, jazz, blues, hip-hop, and R&B. The festivities will continue Saturday, September 9th with The Big "O" Homecoming Show & Dance at the magnificent Capitol Theatre. A star-studded lineup of renowned artists and musicians will perform on both nights to honor Otis Redding’s enduring musical legacy. For inquiries regarding sponsorships, please contact In addition to being a joyous occasion for music enthusiasts, the 2nd Annual King of Soul Music Festival is also a vital fundraiser for the Otis Redding Foundation and the Otis Redding Center for the Arts, which broke ground during the inaugural King of Soul Music Festival last year. The foundation, established in 2007, remains dedicated to empowering, enriching, and motivating youth through education programs that focus on music, writing, and instrumentation. Over the years, the Otis Redding Foundation has positively impacted the lives of thousands of students, supporting them in their pursuit of music and arts education. Notable programs include the annual Otis Music Camp for ages 12-18, Camp DREAM for ages 5-11, music education workshops, private and group lessons, and opportunities to perform on iconic stages such as the Ryman Theater in Nashville. Join us in paying homage to the timeless legacy of Otis Redding while supporting a worthy cause at the 2nd Annual King of Soul Music Festival. For more information about the festival, ticket sales, and the Otis Redding Foundation, please visit


Jermaine Dupri, a member of the Songwriters Hall of Fame, is one of the most successful producers in the music industry. He has established a prolific career as a hip-hop artist, award-winning producer, songwriter, author, DJ, and CEO of So So Def, which he founded in 1993. Rather than impacting only one lane, he has changed the course of R&B, hip-hop, and pop throughout an illustrious career earmarked by some of the most recognizable hits of all time. The GRAMMY® Award-winning iconic songwriter, producer, rapper, artist, entrepreneur, and philanthropist has powered game-changing and chart-breaking smashes such as Mariah Carey’s 6x-platinum “We Belong Together,” Usher’s 3x-platinum “Nice & Slow,” Xscape’s platinum “Just Kickin’ It,” his own “Money Ain’t A Thang” [feat. JAY-Z], and countless others. “We Belong Together” not only toppled the Billboard Hot 100 for the year, but it also emerged as “the song of the decade” and “fifteenth most popular song of all-time, according to Billboard. It took home “Best R&B Song” and “Best Female R&B Vocal Performance” at the 2006 GRAMMY® Awards. At the helm of So So Def Recordings as Founder, he has built a catalog of classic albums, including those of Da Brat, the first solo female rapper to go platinum, debut and historic Funkdafied; Bow Wow’s double-platinum Beware of Dog; Jagged Edge’s double-platinum J.E. Heartbreak; Anthony Hamilton’s platinum Comin’ From Where I’m From; and more. Simultaneously, he has launched JD’s Vegan as a mega-popular plant-based ice cream alternative available in major retailers such as Walmart. Plus, he notably stands out as the second rapper inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame® following JAY-Z. Meanwhile, the GRAMMY® Museum paid homage to JD and So So Def with a dedicated exhibit entitled Jermaine Dupri & So So Def, 25 Years Of Elevating Culture. He has also appeared on-screen in the Aretha Franklin movie Respect, Hip-Hop Family Christmas, and Step Up. Speaking to his presence, Variety attested, “What isn’t recognized enough is his undeniable influence on the current cultural climate. However, he never stops setting the pace for the entire game to follow.

About the Otis Redding Foundation: The Otis Redding Foundation’s mission is to empower, enrich, and motivate all young people through programs involving music, writing and instrumentation. Each partnership and program sponsored since its inception in 2007 supports the philanthropic commitment of Otis Redding to empower and enlighten all young people to fulfill their dreams. The Otis Redding Center for the Arts:  The Otis Redding Center for the Arts is a multipurpose space open to students ages 3-18 who have a desire to explore their interest in all elements of music and the arts. Planning is well underway with a proposed opening in 2024. The Center will be staffed with Macon’s finest musicians offering private music lessons in areas such as piano, audio engineering, strings, and more. Lessons will be complemented by the curricula of various year-round programs dedicated to musical literacy, musical instrumentation, mathematical components of music, etc. Students are encouraged to go beyond and tap into their best effort. The Center believes in the vitality of music and the arts and continues to develop those avenues for youth. Planning for the Otis Redding Center for the Arts has been made possible through the guidance and investments of organizations such as the Knight Foundation, United Way, Peyton Anderson Foundation, Community Foundation of Central Ga., Cox Communications, Mercer University School of Music Central Ga. Technical College, Middle Ga. State University Music School, Bibb County School District, and others who support the music and arts initiatives. The Otis Redding Foundation also has a number of regional and national partners such as GA Council for the Arts, Gretsch, Concord Music Group, Warner Music Group, South Arts and Broadcast Music Inc. (BMI). All of these partnerships align with the mission and goals of the Foundation.


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