About this story

Author: Kelly Outram

Date: January 2011

People: Erika Lovette, Tedd Perry, SWELL, Melissa Parker

Fun facts: "Those who do not strive to succeed strive to fail," Erika Lovette says. So it's not surprising to hear her goal is to go for it: She wants to sing in a major venue in front of thousands.

Melissa Parker is helping local artists in their dreams to make it big.

Data points: According to the 2000 Census, 55.8% of South Siders were women and 44.2% were men.

Woman helps define Syracuse R&B

By: Kelly Outram

With the help of a new recording label, local R&B artist Erika Lovette is in the process of creating her second R&B album. She is working with SKY PAD Studios, which launched in April 2010.

New York City natives Tedd Perry, known as SWELL, and his sister, Melissa Parker, are working to help local artists get national exposure. They combine SWELL’s music industry knowledge as a producer for more than 20 years working with artists such as P. Diddy, Fabolous and Jagged Edge, with Parker’s experience in business. She has a master’s degree in finance.

“The R&B opportunities are not here,” Lovette said. “The city is limited. There aren’t as many open-mic nights or radio stations to help you. You really have to travel and get yourself out there.”

Lovette is SKY PAD Studios’ first project. Lovette released her first album — “Love, Life and Everything In Between” — under a different label in February 2010. With SKY PAD, Lovette is working with songwriter Sheree Hicks, who has written songs for R&B artists Tyrese and Anita Baker and is currently writing for Jennifer Hudson’s new album.

“Working with SWELL has been a blessing because of his connections,” Lovette said.


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