"A network we were talking to was intrigued I was doing real estate. I said,
‘But, I'm a singer,'" laughed Gospel's living legend Deleon Richards-Sheffield
about how she became involved in a reality show. Deleon was the youngest Gospel artist
ever signed to a major record deal. She released her debut album at eight years old then
made history again, as the youngest to be garnered a Grammy Award nomination - Michael Jackson was the
previous title holder. On November 30, 2017 Deleon will launch a reality show, "Sheffield Real Estate,"
on the FYI Network (a division of A&E Networks). The show will have the audience seeing
her as a real estate agent.
When I asked why not one
on her as a Gospel artist she said, "A few years ago we were talking about my music,
looking at other options on how I could get out there - I was doing real estate (at the
time). They were more interested in that...If you like ‘house hunter" type shows you will like this show, it has
the same formula."
I interviewed Deleon for her debut album and my P.R. company, Freelance Associates,
held a Baltimore based press conference to announce it and her. During that time and through
subsequent interviews with her throughout her career I got to know both Deleon and her mother. Deleon'
mother Debbie has been a real estate agent for over 30 years, while managing her daughters' singing career.
During that time Deleon assisted her. "Sheffield Real Estate" airs on Thursdays
at 10 p.m. PT/ET and follows Deleon as she works with her mother in the real estate business,
being mother to her children and wife to her husband Gary Sheffield (New York Mets), a
"It's fun! You get to see the interaction between my mom and myself and how I balance that being wife to my husband - sports
players are pretty needy," she said with a giggle. Deleon married Gary Sheffield in
2000 and they have three children. "My mothers' been in real estate for over 30 years...she
has seen it all. While I was singing she was with me on the road - on the phone...making
deals happen. I was her assistant."
her mother was even awarded as a top seller.
saw her do 60 plus transactions a year when she was with Century 21," Deleon added. "My
mother feels like she knows a lot and at times we bump heads...because I feel I got an idea that may be different
from hers....but I know how to get it done."
The issues that come with being a real estate partner with
a winning expert, the issues that come with being a Gospel living legend, that come with
being the mother of three boys and those that come with being the wife of a living legend baseball player is what viewers
will see when they tune into "Sheffield Real Estate."
The FYI Network is a joint venture between Disney-ABC Television Group and
Hearst Corporation. It reaches 65 million households in the United States. You can log
onto www.FYI.tv for more information on the "Sheffield Real Estate" reality show of Deleon that it airs on Thursdays at 10 p.m.
Another child prodigy from the Gospel industry, Ruth La'Ontra, is releasing
a project. Her project is a Contemporary Gospel album titled "I Got You" (Tyscot
Records). Ruth's debut happened when she was fresh out of high school and that debut album
release, "So Good" (Tyscot Records), garnered a Stellar Award nomination.
"This is my sophomore album," said Ruth La'Ontra pointed out.
When I asked her how she came to be such a young artist on the Tyscot label she said, "My dad. He's
in radio....for 30 years. He is well known...had connections. We did a three song EP and
put it out there - Tyscot saw it. My fans and supporters said, ‘We like to hear some
more from you."
So Ruth started recording on Tyscot Records for her fans and
to do something live," she added. "The album is amazing."
I love live recording as well and "I Got You" does not disappoint. It was released
in September and it still has its just released momentum going. It's produced by her label
mate Grammy nominated Anthony Brown (Key of A Music) with Justin Savage (Song Savvy Productions)
"We're both on the same label.
Anthony is like my big brother," Ruth pointed out. "We were performing together
and I said, ‘We need to so something'."
do something they did. "I Got You" is a powerful project that should take Ruth to another level. When Ruth
sings you forget her young age, but when she starts to talk you realize how young she really
is. The first single released on the "I Got You" album was "Kingdom."
It peaked at #14 on Billboards Gospel Airplay Chart. The North Carolina native is currently
touring the country promoting the album.
cuts off the "I Got You" release include #2 "Safe," a sweet selection she
delivers with a Pop feel that is combined with a twist of Soul; #3 "Come Through" another sweet selection
about God's love for his children - and I love the harmony; #4 the Reprise of "Come
Through" is so soulful - proof she is anointed and her vocals on this one reminds
me of a young CeCe Winans; #7 "Reign" is a powerful selection because of her
vocal delivery that builds up to end explosively as a perfect Praise & Worship song, and #8 "Salt" for
the perfect harmony supporting her, which makes it a powerful testimony selection and on this
one her vocals remind me of a young Michelle Williams (Destiny's Child). You can learn
more about Ruth La'Ontra or her album release "I Got You" by logging onto www.tyscot.com/members/ruth-laontra.