As a humanitarian and activist, PR Specialist Angelo Ellerbee has brought more to the global community than just entertainment. He has cemented his dedication to empowering artists, youths, and those in need for over four decades. His position as a filmmaker, executive producer, manager, fashion designer, and media guru is often used as a platform for giving back to others. From an early age, he took his keen eye for style, sharp ear for hits, and media savvy to parlay his expertise into a full-service publicity/marketing/management company, DoubleXXposure Media Relations, Inc. His client roster is deep and diverse, starting out with legends such as Roberta Flack on to icons like Michael Jackson, Dionne Warwick, Lionel Richie, and reggae stars like Patra and Shabba Ranks among many others over a 46-year span. With his artist development courses, hands-on counseling, and motivational guidance; Ellerbee was a great influence on the lives of young performers like Mary J. Blige and Alicia Keys in their early career.
After graduating from New York’s illustrious Fashion Institute of Technology, he threw his hat into the arenas of fashion, theater, and music before launching a career as a stylist for a variety of entertainers and magazines. He went on to style divas like Nina Simone while his work has been displayed in publications such as Vogue, Essence, Women’s Wear Daily, and Ebony Man. As an actor and dancer, he appeared in the off-Broadway hit, “Bubbling Brown Sugar.” Ellerbee also studied with the Alvin Ailey Dance Theater, where he designed costumes for the company’s 1979 season. Continuing in the world of design, he had a season on cable television hosting “Ellerbee’s Eyes on Fashion” – a hit with viewers that received six Cable Ace Award nominations for excellence.
By the early 80’s, Ellerbee moved fully into the world of publicity and artist development. As head of Grammy Award-Winner James Mtume’s entertainment company, he promoted and managed the stable of recording artists. With New Jersey as its birthing ground, he also handled all the current club music era artists such as Jocelyn Brown and Cybil. Tapped by Chrysalis Records to serve as Director of Publicity and Artist Development in the late 80’s, Ellerbee turned music industry heads with his unique positioning of artists like Gang Starr, Innocence, and Urban Soul. He went on to serve as Senior VP of Publicity for Island Def Jam Records where he brought Dru Hill, Mr. Biggs, and Karen Clark Sheard to prominence.
By the time DoubleXXposure opened its doors in 1985, Ellerbee had developed an industry-wide reputation for excellence. As CEO of such a multi-disciplined and diverse firm, his client’s genre’s range from Hip Hop, jazz, Reggae, R&B, gospel and even opera. Other clientele includes dancers, models, and political figures. Not limited to publicity, he has managed major talents such as DMX, Ginuwine, and Pop artist Laura Branigan, as well as handling company branding—making DoubleXXposure a one-stop shop. Serving as President and General Manager of rap superstar DMX’s Bloodline Records, under his administration, Ellerbee turned the Def Jam imprint into a full-fledged recording company. In addition, he managed the multiplatinum recording artist himself, facilitating the rapper’s global 22 million record sales tallies. He served as an Executive Producer of Fox Searchlight Pictures’ “Never Die Alone” released in 2004 and oversaw several other DMX-related ventures including Dog Wear Inc. and Bloodline Films.
In the early 90's, his company held the distinction of being the first, if not the only black-owned public relations firm on 7th Ave in Midtown Manhattan. A position that spoke volumes to the entertainment community and media because it was among the first to present urban artists with world-class professionalism. During that time, a book on his life story, agented by the acclaimed Judith Reagan garnered enough interest by Paramount Pictures and 20th Century Fox for a seven-figure deal on movie rights alone. This followed with offers from TV for reality shows to be based on his renowned charm school for rappers, with interest from international media in London and Australia. His own exposure grew through featured articles in national magazines such as Inflight, as well as urban publications internationally.
Meanwhile, Ellerbee’s ability to reinvent and bridge the careers of veteran talent with current and mainstream artists resulted in connecting luminaries such as Antonio Fargas and Rihanna when she revived his popular movie phrase “Bitch Better Have My Money” as a hit song. He has also been at the PR foundation of many careers that later gained media success such as film personalities like Terrance J and Ava Duvernay among others. In the sports arena Ellerbee has represented many notables including Olympic winning athletes such as Tori Bowie, NFL Running back Ricky Williams, Track & Field star Angelo Taylor, and NBA player Ben Gordon among others.
The Newark, New Jersey native has been most focused on youth development and community improvement since his early teens. Growing up in the city facing racial discrimination, riots, and a national reputation for violence, Ellerbee set his goals on creating programs and events that would help alleviate the problems. Even at the age of 14, he was staging fashion shows throughout the region, eventually bringing in celebrities from Vogue models to entertainers and community leaders—all to raise funds and awareness of relevant issues. His advocacy for the victims of AIDS and HIV has reached millions worldwide, such as his fundraiser for hospital-based, The Peter Ho Foundation, expressly for victims of the epidemic. By aligning artists such as Heavy D, Sybil, Susan L. Taylor, Carmen de Lavallade, Geoffrey Holder, and Antoni Fargas with a fashion show, they raised several thousands of dollars along with increased support for the organization. Further assistance for those in need includes more publicized events such as refinement classes featured on CNN as well as a makeover for homeless women on The Maury Povich Show. Having taken his cue from Motown Records impresario Berry Gordy, Ellerbee adapted that winning strategy to serve contemporary artists. The Artists Development division of DoubleXXposure is in many ways a youth advocacy platform in how it offers at risk and disadvantaged urban kids an opportunity to promote themselves into the corporate and mainstream world. By taking the classes into youth centers and special workshops; lessons on etiquette, diction, poise, and interview techniques provide an edge young people would never get. This effort has earned him the moniker The Henry Higgins of Hip Hop.
His first top-selling book is Ask Angelo: An Inside Look at the Entertainment Industry from a PR Guru.
This is soon to be followed in summer of 2018 with, The Sense of Success, a visually stunning and motivational book, with an accompanying scented candle line from his Ellerbee Elegance signature collection.