Magazine article Black Issues in Higher Education

USC Looks to Preserve Southern Black Music Forms. (Noteworthy News)

Magazine article Black Issues in Higher Education

USC Looks to Preserve Southern Black Music Forms. (Noteworthy News)

Article excerpt

COLUMBIA, S.C.

A new research center for African American music at the University of South Carolina may become a hub for the study of Southern Black music and its effects on American culture.

All genres of traditionally Black music, with the possible exception of hip-hop, can be traced back to the rural South, says Willie Strong, an assistant professor of music and a director of the Center for Southern African-American Music.

Jazz, blues and gospel all have roots in the folk traditions of the Southern United States, Strong said, while hip-hop, with its roots in urban American, has a less direct tie.

"This is the logical place for a center like this to exist," says Jamal J. Rossi, dean of the university's music department. "I'm hoping we can really raise the awareness of the region's musical traditions that I don't think people understand and appreciate."

The center is in the process of digitizing its audio collection, which includes a recording of the Gershwin opera "Porgy and Bess" set in Charleston, so that it can be accessed via the Web.

South Carolina is particularly important to the development of such music. An estimated 40 percent of African and Caribbean slaves entered the country through Charleston, making the state a "cultural entryway" for many forms of African American music, Strong says. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.