After the release of Red Hot + Riot – The Music And Spirit Of Fela Kuti in 2002, John Carlin thought he was done.
The co-founder of the not-for-profit New York-based Red Hot Organization had enjoyed a successful run raising funds for AIDs awareness commencing with the 1990 album, Red, Hot + Blue, a star-studded gathering of artists covering Cole Porter tunes that sold over 1 million copies and set the stage for a series of albums that tackled different musical genres and their respective audiences over the next 12 years.
But economic hardship combined with the changing music industry landscape had made it a difficult climate in which to raise funds. By the end of the ‘90s, “Red Hot’s whole economic model fell apart," Carlin tells www.samaritanmag.com.
It became very difficult to sell anything. The Internet came and took the underpinnings out of the economic engine of the music industry in general. So we sort of shuttered the company around 2003, when we did Red Hot + Riot. I really thought that was going to be the last record that we did.”
Until that point, Carlin and his Red Hot Organization hit a nerve with their records; donating over $10 million U.S. in proceeds raised to different HIV/AIDS charities and relief efforts all over the world.
* Samaritanmag.com is an online magazine covering the good deeds of individuals, charities and businesses.