*If you’ve grooved to the fly music played on Black Entertainment Television (BET), then you’ve been touched by the magic of Kelly Griffin (DJ Kelly G).
As BET’s Senior Music Supervisor, Kelly G is the mastermind behind selecting the music and the production of BET’s hottest shows, including BET’s “Music Matters,” “Rap City,” “106 & Park,” “Young Starz Tour,” “Uncut” and “BET Access Granted” that reach 80 million households weekly.
With a keen ear for music and a sharp eye for talent, Kelly G not only programs the tightest music to air on BET, but he’s launched the popular Music Matters, a groundbreaking program that showcases the next producers and superstars through live concerts as well as through on-air and digital platforms.
“Music Matters” allows BET music lovers to peep cutting edge artists by logging on to the BET website (www.BET.com/MusicMatters) where they can check out an artist’s music, bios and photos. It also spotlights up-and-coming talent who get the opportunity to perform on multi-city tours and receive national exposure.
“I love bringing together talent that’s hot,” said Kelly G, who said that “Music Matters” has showcased over 100 artists including Jessie J, Marcia Ambrosius, Miguel, Melanie Fiona, J. Cole C. J. Hilton and Mali Music.
Kelly G said that in order for an artist to be showcased on Music Matters, they must possess the “juice” to go to the next level.
“It doesn’t matter if the artist performs R&B, Gospel, Rap, or Hip Hop, we just want to discover music that has more depth and character–music that will sustain itself through the years,” Kelly G explained, adding that Music Matters is looking for artists who “walk in the shadow” of icons like Jay Z, R Kelly, Michael Jackson, Beyonce, Stevie Wonder and Marvin Gaye. “Those are artists that shaped music and culture of the era,” he said.
Kelly G revealed that music has always been his passion.
“I was a music junkie. When everybody was buying the newest sneakers, I had the newest Michael Jackson CD,” he recalls.
Kelly G said his love of music progressed to rocking the turntables as a DJ.
“I loved DJing–hauling crates and equipment and tearing up my mother’s car,” he said, chuckling.
He eventually joined WGCI-FM, Chicago’s Number One rated hip-hop and R&B station where legendary program director Elroy Smith taught him the ropes of playing the hits. Before long, Kelly G was doing production for Steve Harvey’s Morning Show, the George Wallace Show, Tom Joyner and Doug Banks. He then produced his own show called Da Bomb that maintained a number one rated position for five years.
Kelly G was soon doing house remixes for artists such as Janet Jackson, Mary J. Blige, India.Arie, Brandy, Faith Evans and countless others.
When he is not programming and selecting music for BET, Kelly G rocks the house on Jamie Foxx’s “Foxxhole Live” on SiriusXM radio.
And he keeps his turntable skills sharp.
“I still DJ for celebrity events,” said Kelly G who has opened concerts for LL Cool J and Aretha Franklin. He’s also DJ’d parties for P-Diddy, Dallas Austin and Kanye West.
“As long as I’m around music, I’m happy.”