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Ford Motor Co., One Solution create product placement partnership for 2010 Taurus

(November 12, 2009) Ford Motor Company and One Solution, the integrated corporate marketing arm of Radio One and TV One, have joined together in a partnership to promote the all-new 2010 Ford Taurus and the all-new episodes in November of Unsung, TV One's acclaimed, original series of one-hour biographies that celebrates the lives and careers of successful artists or groups who over the years have been under-recognized or under-appreciated.

With the Ford relationship, One Solution brings under one umbrella the marketing power and media assets of TV One; Radio One; and Interactive One, which reaches more than 9 million online users monthly, including the premier African American social networking site BlackPlanet.com. One Solution is providing Ford with a seamless cross-platform infrastructure that ties together radio, television, and online opportunities to reach up to 80 percent of the 26 million African American consumers 12+.

Specifically, the One Solution/2010 Ford Taurus campaign, which creates an engaging experience for African American consumers around the Unsung message, will include:

A customized  Ford Taurus/Unsung TV commercial- TV One partnered with Ford to create a :30 spot that cleverly promotes both the  2010 Ford Taurus and Unsung. As a featured sponsor of the acclaimed series, the spot is being featured in all premiere episodes;

A custom online destination on BlackPlanet (www.blackplanet.com/fordunsung) -- where BlackPlanet members have the opportunity to experience the 2010 Ford Taurus as well as express themselves through photos, messages and content while enjoying Unsung webisodes. Friend invites and custom notes will be sent to BlackPlanet members in the Ford Taurus target audience to drive them to the destination, as well as www.fordurban.com;

Custom creative media and media placements on BlackPlanet.com that provide deep immersion into the BlackPlanet community, including home page take-over;

Integration into Radio One nationally syndicated radio properties - Radio One's popular morning shows, Russ Parr and Rickey Smiley are supporting the Unsung campaign with custom vignettes and Ford Taurus brand spots; and
:30 sec Unsung Radio One nationally syndicated vignettes - designed to drive tune-in to Unsung and to drive traffic to the Interactive One/Black Planet and Fordurban.com platforms - that transport the listener back in time to recall when a featured artist was great and what's happened to them and what they are up to today.
"Being able to have the all-new 2010 Ford Taurus seamlessly woven into multiple platforms as part of this integrated marketing opportunity linked to Unsung is exciting," said Crystal Worthem, multicultural marketing manager, Ford Motor Company. "We are able to shine a spotlight on one of the newest vehicles from Ford in a manner that is not only engaging, but also reaches the great majority of our target market utilizing platforms that are most relevant to them."

 "This partnership really works because the target audience for the 2010 Ford Taurus and Unsung are one and the same," said Radio One and TV One Chief Revenue Officer Keith Bowen. "Unsung is TV One's highest-rated original program, and it really resonates with African Americans in their 30s and early 40s, who have great curiosity about those artists who moved their souls and feet to the dance floor during the 1980s. These same viewers are mature and secure enough to value the quality and engineering prowess presented by the 2010 Ford Taurus."

Narrated by actor Gary Anthony Williams, the new episodes of Unsung. which premiere Sundays at 8 and 11 PM ET from Sunday, Nov. 1 through Sunday, Nov. 22, will chronicle the careers of:

Teena Marie --The Ivory Queen of Soul" signed with Motown Records at 17. There, she teamed up musically - and for a time, romantically - with funk master Rick James, who produced her debut album, Wild and Peaceful.  A hit song with James, Fire and Desire, along with Teena's robust sound and powerful delivery, helped to overcome long standing racial barriers between black audiences and white singers.  Teena talks about leaving Motown at the height of her career, losing her long-time friend Rick James and her fight to take control of her life.

Bootsy Collins -- Visually resplendent in star-shaped sunglasses and outrageous outfits, Bootsy Collins is also a seriously deep musician, whose pioneering bass lines  helped define the sound of both James Brown and George Clinton, and who has since gone on to record solo and with a stunning  array of artists from Snoop Dogg to Dee-lite to Slash.  Bootsy provides candid insight into the Brown and Clinton years, his solo days, his larger than life stage personal ‘Bootzilla', and the personal problems which led him to withdraw from that scene at the height of his career, and what eventually brought him back.

Klymaxx -- Klymaxx succeeded in breaking down the boys-only world of R&B in the mid-1980s, and boldly laid down storylines from an unabashedly female point of view.  Along the way, the six women who provided the core of the band also provided an unlikely launch pad for the careers of producing superstars Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis.  When Klymaxx threw a pop ballad called "I Miss You" into the mix, they crossed over and lit up all the charts.  "I Miss You" was the third best-selling song in the world in 1985, and the group was poised for superstar success.  Their failure to achieve it provided an object lesson about how groups can be pulled apart by the strains and seductions of success. 

Zapp and Roger-   For twenty years, Zapp created hits that pulled together audiences of fans black, brown and white -- while inspiring a generation of hip hop icons from Dr. Dre to T-Pain to Snoop Dogg.  The Troutman brothers -- Lester, Terry, Larry and Roger, who popularized the Talk Box as a voice in the group -- crafted a flavorful, polished sound in the funk zone with classics like  "More Bounce to the Ounce," "I Can Make You Dance," and "So Ruff So Tuff." And with the massive crossover success of Dr. Dre's and Tupac's "California Love," Roger Troutman's career was elevated to near superstar status.  But all of that came crashing down on April 25, 1999 when, to everyone's shock, Larry Troutman shot his brother Roger to death, then turned the gun on himself.  Ten years later, and the Troutman family, their friends and colleagues have united to tell, for the first time, the entire, amazing story of Zapp in this exclusive episode. 

On the day after Thanksgiving, Friday, Nov. 27, TV One will also offer a full-day Unsung marathon from 2-10 PM including these episodes plus the four episodes that premiered earlier this year featuring Minnie Riperton, Melba Moore, Shalamar and Florence Ballard.

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