WHAT: Soul of America in Venice on Labor Day Weekend featuring ALEX
WHEN: Sunday, September 6, 2015
WHERE: Ramada Venice Resort | 425 U.S.-41 By-Pass, Venice, Fla.
Born Alexander Harris, on September 9th in Manchester, Georgia, ALEX is known as a soul, R&B singer, actor, philanthropist, and entrepreneur who cites Marvin Gaye, James Brown, Al Green, and Otis Redding as his major influences. At the ripe age of twelve he went on tour with his band A7, comprised of himself and five of his brothers, launching his career. Since then, he has had billboard hits, traveled the world, and created his Arts Conservatory for Teens (ACT).
Singer, actor, and philanthropist, ALEX was born the middle child of eight, on September 9th in the quiet town of Manchester, Georgia. Fathered by James Harris, a pastor at the local church, and his mother Carolyn Harris who was a teacher, there were no implements to become musically inclined. So, a young Harris had limited opportunities to indulge his hunger for rhythm. With an ineffable fixation on music, he found his outlet for creativity with his siblings. By building stages in the backyard, making instruments out of the rubber bands from collard greens, and buckets as drums with drumsticks made from branches of pine trees; the Harris children found they each had a special talent. Their father was quick to notice the talent that his children had and swiftly brought them in to sing at his church. At the age of 7, he was the lead singer of the new family band; the A-Boys, later reinvented as A7, six kids with all their names starting with an A, and the seventh member being the presence of God. With the rise of their success, the brothers began touring the US during the summer when out of school. Although in a band, each brother made academics their top priority throughout high school, college, and even graduate school. After graduating high school, ALEX enrolled at LaGrange College, where he earned his Bachelor of Arts in Human Services and Psychology. He then went on to receive his Master’s in Theology and Social Work from Boston University, did an extended graduate study in Adolescent Counseling at Harvard University, and he is currently working on his doctorate in Organizational Leadership at Nova Southeastern University in Florida.
Shot at Fame
ALEX’s father was not the only individual to see the talent of A7. The group of brothers integrated ministries into a unique R&B, jazz, hip-hop Motown blend that they conveniently named Inspirational Urban Soul. Their success provided an opportunity for them to perform for the Prime Minister of Ireland and after their Billboard charting and award winning song “Don’t Walk Away” they were asked to perform on BET’s Bobby Jones Show. It was then that the brothers gained national and international recognition, and that same year they performed at the Inaugural Ball for President George Bush. After three years touring together, ALEX decided to branch off and began working on his solo album. During this time he was invited to perform at the Apollo, where he sang a crowd favorite “Hope for Us.” ALEX has recently performed a special VIP performance for the Premier-President of Bermuda, and also performed at the HBCU Red Carpet Inaugural Gala Celebration in Salute of President Obama and Sounds of Brazil. He has completed his new single, “Hope for US,” that released March 2014 and climb the charts to a # 1 position. With this new choice to become a solo artist, ALEX has really been able to showcase his talent by carrying over the emotions from his Gospel roots into his mainstream R&B, soul acts. With a somewhat nostalgic lyrical content, and slow R&B sounds, he can be seen as the new aged Marvin Gaye. Not only is he simply a ‘Soul’ artist, but also he is quite the performer. While on stage, ALEX puts himself into every note and has the ability to change something inside of every listener. He lets his life experiences fuel his creative force and has now become a symbol for the soul. He has been able to incorporate the depiction of Marvin Gaye’s lyrics, the embodiment of James Brown, and vocals reminiscent of Al Green into his music. ALEX has opened for chart topping artists such as John Legend, Eric Benet, Al Green, Kirk Franklin, Mary Mary, among numerous other successful music entertainers. It has been a long haul, but he has made it at last.
Who Is ALEX Now?
After all of his blessings, ALEX has been nothing short of humble. He has taken every opportunity he has had in life, and chosen to give back to his community. In St. Petersburg, Florida, ALEX was introduced to Carl Lavender from the Boys and Girls Clubs of the Suncoast. It was then that he was inspired to take things into his own hands and change the future for many of the community’s youth to come. By creating ACT, The Arts Conservatory for Teens, he is giving ‘kids’ between the ages of 11-18 the opportunity to express themselves freely and encourage them to be creative, while refining their artistic skills in a professional environment; a chance ALEX himself was never given. He also sings and acts with the youth, giving them the ability to perform alongside professionals, and also provides them with materials to help build their portfolios. In this, the youth receive experience that will help them get scholarships and get them into college. ACT has become a support group between academic institutions and parents that is able to ensure that students are prepared to pursue higher education. It has a 100% graduation rate, and a 100% college placement rate. ALEX firmly believes in an artist’s social responsibility; the accountability of empowering local communities through partnering with organizations that will support the cause. For Alex, it’s his ACT program that provides the platform for that social responsibility. He has made it his duty to empower the youth of socioeconomically challenged communities worldwide. By partnering with organizations in the local communities, this allows additional funding for seminars and workshops for projects or programs in the arts and academic excellence. He has partnered with the city of St. Petersburg and the TASCO center for teen technology, among many others, to work together for the growth of ACT. Eventually, he plans to have more ACT’s, each in a major city throughout the U.S. and abroad.
ALEX a Soul/R&B vocalist and actor is no stranger to the entertainment scene. Having started his entertainment career at the tender age of 7 years old, he toured throughout the southeast region with his siblings. ALEX has a growing following world-wide because of his #1 hit single, Hope for Us, Top 20 Billboard success, Don’t Walk Away, with his brothers, A7, and his electrifying soulful and engaging performances. His polished lyrical styling and dynamic energy is a breath of fresh air with a very earthy twist that transcends multiple audiences everywhere he performs including 2 of the Presidential Inaugural Galas, Premier of Bermuda Gala, Premier of Ireland Gala and many other prestigious galas, schools, colleges, corporate events, and festivals world-wide. ALEX has not only headlined his own shows, but has graced stages with entertainers and actors, such as Al Green, Bobby Rush, Eric Benet, John Legend, Kirk Franklin, Lamman Rucker, Leon and many others.