He’s made history in life and career, changed state laws and been at the center of international controversies. He’s at home on a stage as he is in front of a camera or microphone, in a recording studio or on a set and has worked on them all. He’s entertained for years in the No. 2 and No. 4 radio markets in the country, Los Angeles and San Francisco on the No. 1 stations KFI and KGO. He’s written for Billboard, and then been featured in it as an artist; he’s been with the HuffingtonPost since it started and has published two books. He’s been a guest on every major cable network, helped pioneer the recent trend of reality TV for five years on cable TV. There’s even an App for him.
He is Karel, Charles Karel Bouley.
And like media, he is constantly changing, producing content for radio, podcast, television, stage, online, OTT, streaming and print. He currently is seen on Free Speech TV (DirecTV, Roku, OTT) weekly, heard daily on every streaming service with Karel’s Furious Five and maintains a weekly OTT show Life In Segments Lite. He’s releasing singles and an album in 2019 along with two books.
Here’s the cliffnotes:
- • Daily delivery of Karel’s Sassy Six, a six minute audio/video broadcast about news of the day, health, fitness, mental health, entertainment, interviews and more;
- Releasing new Dance single August 27th 2019 with album to follow, his second album and fifth single;
- • Host of “Life In Segments” on Free Speech TV for four seasons comprised of entertainment segments and documentary-style location segments;
- Lost 110 pounds through plant based eating and is turning it in to The Planted Host, TV, Web and print projects;
- • Tours with “Karel Stands Up!” A 90 minute one man show of comedy, parody, satire and music that the Bay Area Reporter and San Francisco Examiner says “does not disappoint, Karel delivers a powerhouse tour-de-force non stop…”
- • Featured columnist for syndicated publications including Medium;
- • Has released one full length album, four charting singles and been a guest vocalist on three other singles all supported by live dates;
- • First book “You Can’t Say That” published through Alyson Press, second book “Shouting at Windmills: BS From Bush to Obama” available at amazon.com;
- • Made history with partner Andrew Howard on KFI AM 640 Los Angeles; went on to KGO AM 810 San Francisco; • He’s served as an entertainment reporter for KNX 1070 Los Angeles (CBS) going live from every major entertainment award show and event; • Did reality show “Ultimate Revenge” on SpikeTV for Woody Fraiser Productions starring Ryan Seacrest and Marc Summers for two seasons; • Written for Billboard Magazine, HuffingtonPost, Advocate, Genre, GED and many others; • Debuted as a comic in the Belly Room of the Comedy Store on Sunset Strip, Los Angeles, CA.;
- • Co-wrote a song for the film “Just One Time” from acclaimed director Lane Janger;
- • Co-wrote the International Press Academy’s 1999/2000 Golden Satellite Awards at the Beverly Hilton, and hosted the event twice broadcast in several countries;
- • Co-wrote the treatments for two major videos for A&M Records by the late Vesta Williams;
- • Co-wrote and produced three music videos for himself and headed the film production; • Released two singles executive produced by Jellybean Benitez on Jellybean’s label;
- • Recorded and released successful independent album with top name producers and vocalists named one of Billboard’s 10 Best that year;
- • Emceed and hosted over 200 prestigious and televised events;
- • Appeared in interviews on every major network including ABC, CBS, NBC, MSNBC, CNN, Fox News and more;
Karel started his career on the opposite side of the business, working as a music journalist, photographer and publicist for some of the biggest magazines and artists in R&B music.
A student of theatre, performing was a natural progression for him. After session and demo work, he enlisted the help of contacts made over the years to create his own project. He released four singles and an album independently, on his own record label to rousing success. He worked with incredible writers and producers, including Eddie Holland (Holland-Dozier-Holland), Steve Bronski (Bronski Beat), The Factory Team (Mauro Farina) and Thea Austin (Snap!, “Rhythm Is A Dancer”).
Those projects were featured in all major national sales outlets and gained him media and public acclaim. His first album is still a strong seller and received many honors and was named to over 10 “Best Of” lists. Live performances followed, where he opened for and/or performed with the brightest artists in Dance music, including Grace Jones, Bronski Beat, Dead or Alive and many more.
It was on the tour circuit that he came to the attention of Jellybean Benitez (who produced hits for Madonna and a musical who’s who) and Jellybean immediately signed Karel to his label, Jellybean Recordings. To date, Karel has released two projects on Jellybean Recordings (“I Am” and “Take Your Heartache Away”) with Jellybean serving as Executive Producer.
Being a visual artist, Karel has starred in three music videos to support his musical releases, two of which he produced himself (“I Am” and “Live To Tell”). His strong mixture of comedy and music on stage made him a natural for comedy clubs and he made his debut at the prestigious Comedy Store on Sunset in Hollywood, CA as one of the headliners in the Belly Room.
He started appearing as a regular guest on a L.A. radio morning show, and soon had his own weekly talk show on air entitled “Different After Dark.” That show became a critical success and boasted many top name celebrity interviews. Karel again proved that if his talent was challenged, it would rise to the occasion.
He, along with his partner Andrew Howard, went on to become the first openly gay male couple to host a major market radio show in drive time when KFI AM 640 put them on daily from 4pm to 7pm in 1999. The duo quickly beat their competition at KABC 790 and even gathered weekly total audiences comparable to Tom Leykis on KLSK.
They continued at KFI until Howard’s unexpected death in May of 2001. After his death Karel stayed at KFI while he began a wrongful death lawsuit that would end up changing the standing Domestic Partners had when it came to wrongful death suits. Karel’s suit originally got thrown out because the court said he had no standing with his partner under existing law.
He changed that and went on to settle. From KFI it das off to KGO San Francisco, a legacy 50,000 watt station, where Karel served in the station’s heyday in the early 2000s and through the first decade of 2000. In 2008 he was fired, rehired in 2010, fired again in 2015 when the station changed hands yet again.
After creating national controversy and being fired for a year from KGO for an off-mike expletive that was inadvertently aired in 2008 he launched Karel Stands Up, a one man stage show with parody songs, comedy and satire and it has been a hit all along the West Coast of the United States.
Receiving rave reviews every where he takes it and always being asked back, the show is another extension of this multifaceted performer. In March of 2009 he launched the Karel Cast . It would last until January 2019 when Karel stopped daily long format radio to pursue other endeavors.
But while radio and journalism have been a strong focus, Karel’s heart lies on stage, in the studio (of all kinds) on the web, film and TV. In 2013 he took the daily Karel Cast down to one hour, to concentrate on video projects and produced “Life in Segments” an entertainment show for Free Speech TV (DIrecTV) and the web and scripted shows as well. He has secured a role in an upcoming film and is currently developing other on screen projects. And in January of 2019 after 26 years Karel moved on from a daily long-format radio broadcast to other endeavors.
In 2019 Karel will be releasing four singles and an album; two books, including one based on his over 100 pound weight loss, tour, have a daily broadcast presence and weekend streaming TV show plus launch a scripted endeavor.
Through thousands of live performances (both musical and theatrical), hundreds of hours on radio and a series of acclaimed record releases, Karel is proving to be an unshakable force in today’s entertainment industry and will be one of the most enduring stars of the future, no matter what the medium.
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