Law Office of Deborah E. Johnson, Esq.

Plans fail for lack of counsel, but with many advisers they succeed ~ Proverbs 15:22 

News & Publications

view:  full / summary

Andrea Helms Top 10

Posted on November 21, 2014 at 10:30 AM Comments comments (0)






Congratulations to Andrea Helms, Season 4 Finalist of BET's Sunday's Best for maintaining her TOP 10 slot for 2 consecutive weeks. The single, Clap Your Hands Dallas' Christian Hip Hop rapper, ft. Norris J, is title track of the album. It is steady moving up the charts on radio and has received rave reviews by Yolanda Adams and Lonnie Hunter, to name a few, across the country.

Download or stream to get the NEW album via iTunes, Spotify, Amazon, or Google Play. It is also available in Wal Mart, Best Buy or your nearest Christian Book Stores.

2014 Wonder Tour - Jamison Strain

Posted on November 18, 2014 at 3:25 PM Comments comments (0)



Dallas, TX (September 29, 2014) —Popular CCM artist Jamison Strain will headline his first Christmas tour this December 2014. Presented by Perry Productions & Management Group and Adelphoi Music, “The Wonder Tour” will be appearing in 10 cities throughout the southeast sharing the exciting and wonder filled Christmas message. This tour will include several special guests making this a not-to-miss concert of the Christmas season. The Wonder Tour will begin in Houston TX on November 29 and make its way across the southeast ending in Katy, TX on December 8.


In 2013 Jamison released his first Christmas single, Wonder (2013) that quickly topped the indie charts with over 10,000 downloads. This year’s “The Wonder Tour” will feature songs from Jamison’s recent Christmas project titled – The Wonder EP as well as collaboration with the special guest apart of the tour. “The birth of Jesus is the greatest reason to celebrate, so we’re thrilled to present ‘The Wonder Tour’ in my first ever Christmas tour.” says Strain.


Jamison has had the opportunity to share the stage with such national acts as Shane & Shane, Jamie Grace, Wayne Kerr, Sarah Kelly, Greg and Janna Long of Avalon, DecembeRadio and Pocketful of Rocks. Jamison’s heart is summed up in the song, Wonder. This song is the perfect example of his heart for telling the story of Christ and all that He has done. Jamison’s songs have a way of leading the listener’s heart to not only Christmas wonder, but the wonder of and found through worship.



For a full list of cities, available dates and ticketing information, visit






November 29th – Houston Texas


November 30th – Albany Georgia


December 1st – TBA


December 2nd – Montgomery Alabama


December 3rd – Gulf Shores Alabama


December 4th – Jackson Mississippi


December 5th – TBA


December 6th – TBA


December 7th – Fort Worth Texas


December 8th – Katy Texas



Posted on November 5, 2014 at 8:00 PM Comments comments (0)

You need Adobe Flash Player to view this content.

ShySpeaks raises social awareness on Low Literacy in Adults! #LiteraryNow










Andrea Helms Clap Your Hands Album Now in Stores!

Posted on October 31, 2014 at 11:50 AM Comments comments (0)



Andrea Helms' "Clap Your Hands" Now Available

Los Angeles, CA (October, 2014) One of the most influential voices in today’s modern Christian and Gospel music, Andrea Helms is proud to announce her highly anticipated album, "Clap Your Hands."

Andrea was first discovered competing for the top spot on BET's Sunday's Best show, will be releasing her debut album with Dream Gospel, "Clap Your Hands," - This powerful, upbeat and anointed album, is 14 songs sure to excite her fans and attract new ones.

"When we put the songs together for this album, I wanted a continual theme of how good God was, who he was to us, what we can expect from God and what we need to give to God. I really believe that this album is uplifting. You can find something on here that will speak to you . If you want to worship, it's on there. If you want to drive down the road and listen to something you can drive to, it's on there. My prayer is when you listen to it, that you would know God like I know God and see the goodness of God."


or text "ANDREA" to 51555

Check out her single, "Clap Your Hands":



Dream Gospel was founded by David Hanley, lead singer of Press Play, in May of 2013. David Hanley (President) and wife Gina Hanley (VP of Development) have one very focused purpose and passion… and that is to see lives changed. Lance Brown (General Manager) is one of our industry’s leading minds and together the entire team puts all trust in God. DREAM is truly setting a new standard in the music and entertainment industry, while reaching thousands of lives each day. DREAM’s approach and model is to not only sign and develop artist in the traditional manner of promoting an artist to the top of the traditional music industry and market – but also not forgetting about the church-based artist and developing a solid foundation of artist that are called, committed and targeted to reach their local, regional and world markets. DREAM Label Group is also home to CCM artist Jonathan Thulin, Cindy Cruse Ratcliff and Gospel Trio, Zie’l.


Andrea Helms is no stranger to Gospel Music and the Gospel Music Industry. She is known for her powerful voice and performances on Season 4 of BET’s Sunday Best, is a lifelong singer and worshipper from Odessa, Texas. Andrea grew up loving music and is currently the minister of music at Friendship Church, where her father was the Pastor. Andrea now has a chance to share her passion and talents with the world. She released her first album, Moving Forward in 2012 with Music World Gospel.

Andrea’s ability to overcome her odds built a strength that would prove to be an asset to her surprising success on BET’s Sunday Best. Andrea’s journey to first runner-up on Sunday’s Best was one of faith and favor. Andrea admits that she left that platform as a much stronger and more confident performer. Andrea demonstrated her range and ability with her personal renditions of songs performed by some of the industry’s top talent including Tremaine Hawkins, Whitney Houston and Martha Munizzi. She continued to display her boldness as she put her authentic stamp on seven popular songs for her debut album, Moving Forward. She covered Mary Mary’s “Yesterday”, Richard Smallwoods “I Love the Lord”; “Wind Beneath My Wings”; and two classics from Donald Lawrence. The album was well received, reaching #2 on the Billboard Gospel Chart.

In addition to her music, Andrea has been busy with theatre productions and appearances. She performed alongside Le’Andria Johnson in T.J. Hemphill’s play Perilous Times II and was requested to sing at Dr. Martin L King, Jr.’s birthday celebration in Atlanta. Andrea currently resides in Denton, TX with her husband and son. She is still currently the minister of music at her childhood church, Friendship Church, where her husband is now the pastor.

Andrea is currently under the management of BPM Music Group, LLC. and is excited about the direction of her musical career.


Connect with Andrea Helms

For interview, reviews and general media:

Lance Brown

Andrea Helms New Album now in Stores!

Posted on October 29, 2014 at 11:40 AM Comments comments (0)


Andrea Helms NEW album Clap Your Hands available IN STORES TODAY!




ANDREA HELMS Now Available copy


Screen Shot 2014-10-17 at 9.44.50 AM

Andrea Helms Inks New Record Deal with Dream Gospel

Posted on September 17, 2014 at 3:45 PM Comments comments (0)

Posted on Sep, 17th 2014

by DeVante Arbet of The Gospel Guru


Congratulations are in order!


Today it was announced that BET Sunday Best alumni, Andrea Helms has inked a record deal with Dream Label Group’s Dream Gospel imprint!


The singer joins the likes of Zie’l and Cindy Cruse-Ratcliff among others at the label, which is distributed by Capitol Christian Distribution.


Details below…


Andrea Helms Signs To Dream Gospel, Announces New Tour Dates And New Album.


Los Angeles, CA (September, 2014) – Dream Gospel is proud to announce the signing of Texas powerhouse, Andrea Helms to it’s growing roster. Andrea, who was first discovered competing for the top spot on BET’s Sunday’s Best show, will be releasing her debut album on Dream Gospel, Clap Your Hands, on October 27th with pre-orders starting on iTunes on October 14th. This powerful, upbeat and anointed album, is 14 songs sure to excite her fans and attract new ones.


“When your CEO tells you to pray on it, this has got to be the best fit for me”, says Andrea Helms. “I’m excited for this new chapter in my life and I can’t wait to have you all hear it.”


Andrea’s greatest goal, however, is to use her music to connect people with Jesus. “I want people to know how big Jesus is through what I sing,” she says. “I want them to know He is real and that you don’t have to be cleaned up to come to Jesus, you can come as you are. And if that is accomplished, then my mission is complete.”


Check out her single, “Clap Your Hands”:



What Can Entertainment Law Do For You?

Posted on August 29, 2014 at 4:30 PM Comments comments (0)

By Naomi Richard


August 28, 2014



Entertainment Law has become such a hot topic, that The Recording Academy sponsors an annual high-profile luncheon on the subject during Grammy® Award Week. (Photo courtesy of Naomi Richard)



Many artists, especially independent artists, fail to see the importance of hiring an entertainment lawyer. Some of you may feel that it is not in your budget or that it’s not a priority. Hiring an entertainment lawyer is of utmost importance, and should be in your initial budget just like studio costs, voice lessons, modeling lessons, production fees, artwork, etc. An entertainment lawyer is an investment in your dream. There is no replacement for doing it right the first time, and hiring a lawyer up front can save you substantial costs and significant aggravation later.



I sat down with Deborah E. Johnson, a seasoned attorney in the Dallas area for the Law Office of Deborah E. Johnson, Esq. Her practice primarily focuses on music and entertainment law issues, dealing heavily in transactional law, contract review and negotiations, and artist representation and limited management roles. Johnson’s clientele currently includes vocal artists, musicians, producers, actors/actresses, and models to name a few.



We recently spoke with Johnson, referred to as DEJ, about these pressing issues. Let’s see what she has to say about entertainment law and what it can do for you.



Naomi Richard: What services are provided by an entertainment lawyer?


Deborah E. Johnson: Protection and preservation of intellectual property.


Assist artists with negotiations and contract review, Assist with copyright laws.


Provide guidance with Performing Rights’ Organizations (PRO) and the Digital Performance Right in Sound Recordings Act.


Make sure you’re protected domestically and internationally.


Ensure proper organizational structure.


Assist with branding and trademarking.


Resolve legal conflicts.


Review Song Split Sheet Agreements.



NR: Who needs an entertainment lawyer?


DEJ: Singers, dancers, actors/actresses, models, musicians, producers, bands, photographers, writers and filmmakers.



NR: Can you share with us the estimated cost to retain an entertainment lawyer?


DEJ: On average the cost is $200-400 per hour, however, some services can be provided for a nominal flat fee.



NR: Do you have a standard list of questions to ask a potential entertainment lawyer?


DEJ: Have you worked in the entertainment industry before?


Who are some of your clients and what type of entertainment do they provide?


Have you successfully recovered royalties?


Have you worked with movie companies or record labels?


Do you have experience with the major PRO’s?


Is this person well known in the industry?



NR: Let’s say I’ve been acting in local films, and I’ve already written a few songs. Is it too late to hire an entertainment lawyer?


DEJ: It’s never too late to hire an attorney. I like to be involved in the process from the beginning so that I am not playing catch up. Many clients hire lawyers after a firestorm is brewing. Most of these issues could have been avoided if the lawyer was retained early on. It definitely costs more to come in and fix issues that could have performed correctly from the start.



NR: Suppose I wrote a song, recorded it with friends from church and put it on YouTube. I’m waiting for it to go viral or be seen by a major music label. Do I need a lawyer now or can I wait until I hit it big?


DEJ: You don’t need a lawyer now, but if a music label contacts you, you should contact an entertainment lawyer immediately. Additionally, before you post something on YouTube, research any rules, laws, or regulations that might affect your posting. Some music falls within the public domain, and requires no additional approval. However, covering another artist’s song may sometimes require a mechanical license. If your video is in question, you should contact a lawyer to find out what is and is not allowed, given the current laws and the particular website. The court system is still attempting to catch up with technology; therefore, some issues have not yet been fleshed out.



NR: What would you say if while at the mall shopping, a modeling agency saw me and wanted to put me on a runway immediately. They said they would pay me $500 in cash at the fashion show. Any concerns?


DEJ: Yes, I would be concerned. I always advise clients to never do anything without a contract and to never sign a contract without a lawyer. What exactly is the $500 paying for? If someone wants to hire you immediately, and they are a legitimate modeling company, they should provide some type of Work-for-Hire contract and/or Release right there on the spot. Typically, either of those documents gives the modeling agency full license to use your image over and over without compensating you in the future. If you are okay with that and feel this is your big break, go for it! If not, decline the offer and continue to pursue well known modeling agencies that will compensate you for your work. It’s all up to you.



NR: What if, for example, I’m a songwriter and producer. Can I get double royalties?


DEJ: Songwriter and producer royalties should be determined early in the recording process. If you are producer and a songwriter, it is possible that you may receive double royalties, based on your production agreement with the artist, any publishing agreements you may have with the artist and/or the record label, along with in-studio verbal agreements that can be reflected and delineated in song split sheets.



NR: Let’s say I went to a seminar and copyright laws seem pretty straightforward. I feel comfortable with a ‘poor man’s copyright.’ Should I proceed?


DEJ: I do not recommend using the ‘poor man’s copyright’ method because you will not receive those additional protections set in place under federal law when a work is registered with the U.S. Copyright Office. Once a piece of music has been created, the creator should seek to register the work with the copyright office as soon as possible. This is fairly inexpensive and well worth the money.



NR: SoundExchange is just another PRO like BMI, ASCAP and SESAC right?


DEJ: SoundExchange is a non-profit Performing Rights Organization, designed to track the streaming of artist content. In short, SoundExchange tracks and pays out to artists on digital performance royalties. They collect and distribute those royalties back to the artist when the content is played on a non-interactive digital source. Below is a list of the benefits to joining Sound Exchange:


Maximize your revenue through foreign royalty collections.


Join the effort to fight for long-term value of music.


Conference and equipment discounts.


Distributes the featured artist’s share directly to the artist.


Distributes the Sound Recording Copyright Owners’ share directly to the copyright owner.



In summary, take the time to establish yourself correctly from the beginning. Join networking groups in your area, attend industry conferences and retain an entertainment lawyer.

Andrea Helms Leaves Music World/Begins "Independent" Journey

Posted on July 24, 2014 at 2:55 PM Comments comments (1)

Posted on Jul, 23rd by DeVante Arbet of The Gospel Guru.


Almost 3 years after appearing on BET’s Sunday Best, and inking a record deal with Music World Gospel, Andrea Helms has announced her departure from Matthew Knowles‘ ‘Music World Gospel’, and the beginning of her independent journey.


Details below...



Helms Is Currently Managed by BPM Music Group and Working on New Projects


July 22, 2014- Andrea Helms, best known as the runner-up on BET’s Season 4 Sunday’s Best TV show, is taking her budding music career in a different direction. Andrea recently parted ways from the umbrella of Music World Gospel (MWG) as the MWG family experiences changes in its organization. Andrea is now in pursuit of a new career as an indie artist and under the management of BPM Music Group, LLC. Andrea is currently exploring her options as an artist and working to build a repertoire of music for her fans. “I am so blessed to have this platform to minister to people through music. I am extremely excited about my future plans and know that my fans and supporters will truly enjoy all that I have in store,” says Andrea Helms.


Attorneys Heather Beverly of the Law Office of Heather Beverly, P.C. and Deborah E. Johnson of the Law Office of Deborah E. Johnson, Esq., worked amicably to provide the best long-term career goal options for Andrea as well as MWG. Andrea currently has no plans to sign with another label; however, she is open to the idea of signing with the well-known RCA Inspiration or Motown Gospel in the future. Both of these labels have picked up other Sunday’s Best participants and winners, including Le’Andria Johnson and Crystal Aikin. Currently, Andrea is set to release a new album this fall. Her management and legal team are striving to build momentum for the new project.

Gospel Hip Hop Artist Shy Speaks Joins Girl in Charge Roster

Posted on May 7, 2014 at 5:40 PM Comments comments (0)

7 May, 2014


Girl In Charge!

Meet the New Voice of Gospel Hip Hop. A dynamic Artist, Poet and Speaker: SHYSPEAKS






Now Scheduling interviews, music reviews and appearances!



Dynamic, Inspirational, Powerful




My vision is to give a “Voice” of strength and empowerment to a generation of young people that are widely overlooked and often overshadowed by a one dimensional view of music and art. My new EP INVITED is a true representation of me and a culture that celebrates thinking and speaking as an individual with values; unafraid to stand for something rather than follow anything. I am the trusted and relevant “Voice” of a young powerful female with a mission to show myself as an Artist, Activist and Advocate with the talent to deliver a message that provokes thought while keeping the crowds moving and heads bobbing through; Inspired Hip Hop Soul.

ShySpeaks the Artist; hype beats and a fierce delivery sets my sound and music apart from the next female rapper, but it’s clever lyrical content that awakens the consciousness of a generation that has been written off as mindless and lost. Whether delivered through music or spoken word I demand that young people live their lives like their Souls depend on it. ShySpeaks the Activist; changing the mindset of young people to believe they can affect Change in their local communities and not accept the defeat of illiteracy, inferior education and the demoralization women. As a woman I know the strength of a community I’ve established myself locally as a”Voice” to be heard with a powerful message. Unafraid to speak the truth and stand for what I know to be real I speak words that make people think about their circumstances and implement Change. ShySpeaks the Advocate; I’ve fostered a relationship with a non-profit organization named LIFT that is dedicated to bending the trend of of the escalating low literacy rates of adults in Texas.

I have established a following and fan base in my local community and continue to expand my reach through social media, speaking/hosting engagements and performances. This outreach has afforded me a platform to partner with several major businesses, organizations and community leaders. Although I strive to grow as an Artist, Activist and Advocate my ties to my local community will always keep me rooted in my commitment to affecting change at home as well as abroad.

I am expanding my catalog of inspirational music & poetry with a new EP entitled INVITED. Each time I am afforded the opportunity to share my music or poetry I’m greeted with words of encouragement such as “I really enjoyed your perspective,” “more people need to hear what you are saying”, “you really represented the ladies” or “how can I support?”.

It is time for me to move forward and embark on my mission to Uplift, Inspire and Move a new generation with my “Voice” of Inspired Hip Hop Soul.