New York - On the heels of releasing their most important issue ever, the double-coverCommemorative Michael Jackson Tribute Edition, Hip Hop Weekly magazine publishers Dave Mays and Ray Benzino were recently acknowledged with the award for"Best Magazine" at the Urban Music Awards in New York. Hip Hop Weekly beat out The Source, Vibe, and XXL, all long-time urban mainstays. The award comes just two years after Hip Hop Weekly was named one of the "15 Hottest Magazine Launches" in 2007 by prestigious media industry authority "MIN." The Urban Music Awards honor marks Hip Hop Weekly's emergence in 2009 as the leader of the "next generation" in print media for a consumer market that has broadened and matured as hip hop has become a mainstream, worldwide culture.
This year's Urban Music Awards USA ceremony was held July 17 at the renowned Hammerstein Ballroom in New York City. Hip Hop Weekly was nominated by over 2 million fans worldwide for submission into the Best Magazine category. Editor-at-large Cynthia Horner and Style/Creative Editor TJ Rudy were on-hand to accept the award at New York's Hammerstein Ballroom.
"We are proud that the world's first celebrity weekly-format magazine for the hip hop community has been acknowledged as the Best Magazine of 2009, just two and a half years after our launch," said David Mays, Hip Hop Weekly's publisher and co-founder. "The ongoing and explosive growth of Hip Hop Weekly during what may be the worst climate in the history of magazine publishing, is a strong testament to the validity and groundbreaking nature of our innovative format and journalistic approach. I would like to acknowledge our entire Hip Hop Weekly staff for their contributions in consistently delivering relevant, informative and entertaining content to the mainstream hip hop audience."
Hip Hop Weekly (www.HipHopWeekly.com) currently ranks as one of the 10 best-selling magazines nationally in the 7-Eleven chain out of over 65 titles, and the magazine was recently added by Walmart to over 3,000 magazine pockets at cash registers in the front of their stores.
The co-founders of The Source Magazine in 1988, David Mays and Ray Benzino developedThe Source into the #1-selling music magazine on newsstands in the world in the 1990's. The team of Mays and Benzino would go on to be recognized for their innovation in building a stable of media companies around The Source name, establishing one of the best known brands in the media business through their successful ventures in television, music, merchandising, and mobile content downloads. They produced some of the highest-rated TV programs for a hip-hop audience ever, including the 2004 broadcast of The Source Awardswhich ranks as the 6th highest rated show in the history of the BET network. The Sourcepresents Hip Hop Hits became the most successful series of hip hop compilation albums ever, selling over 5 million copies domestically. The Source Mobile division sold over 3 million ringtone downloads in two years. Their efforts in the corporate space were instrumental in taking hip hop into the mainstream, growing the audience and expanding the universe of businesses selling to the coveted, hard-to-reach 18- to 34-year-old market.
About Hip Hop Weekly
Hip Hop Weekly is the world's first entertainment and news weekly for the Hip Hop generation. The magazine covers celebrity news, music, film, TV, fashion and sports from the perspective of the tens of millions of young Americans who identify with hip hop culture. Hip Hop Weekly is published every two weeks and is available nationally at stores such as Barnes & Noble, 7Eleven, Walgreen's, Rite Aid, Kmart, Pathmark, CVS and Walmart, as well as airport magazine retailers and magazine outlets in the UK and Canada.
Pictured from left to right: Music producer, Swizz Beatz with Hip Hop Weekly's Editor-at-Large Cynthia Horner and Style/Creative editor T.J. Rudy at the Urban Music Awards.