The National Museum of African American History and Culture is set to release a new book capturing the impact of Black music on American society and the world.
In a press release issued on Wednesday (February 23rd), the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC) celebrated the release of Musical Crossroads: Stories Behind the Objects of African American Music. The new book covers the impact of Black music on America and the world from the 19th Century to the present day, featuring compelling images of over 200 images of items from the institution’s permanent collection which were featured in a 2017 exhibition by the same name.
“Harriet Tubman’s hymnal, Charlie Parker’s saxophone, Chuck Berry’s Cadillac Eldorado, Sammy Davis Jr.’s childhood tap shoes, the Parliament Funkadelic Mothership—these are among the nearly 4,000 items that make up the music collection stewarded by the National Museum of African American History and Culture,” said NMAAHC Director Kevin W. Young.
The essays in the Musical Crossroads book are contained within five chapters: Music and the Meaning of Things, Roots and Branches, Music in the Community, Music of the Community, I Wish I Knew How It Would Feel To Be Free, and The Power(s) of Black Music. Essays have been contributed by a select array of writers and researchers, with former NMAAHC Music and Performing Arts Curator Dwandalyn D. Reece serving as editor.
“Music is the great equalizer around the world. No matter where it originates or what form it takes, it has played a crucial role in shaping the human experience and preserving the history of that experience for centuries,” Reece wrote in the press statement. “The museum’s music collection includes celebrated artists, diverse music genres, high-profile professionals, institutions, and historical events, as well as artifacts that reflect the role music plays in the day-to-day lives of individuals in their homes, churches, schools, and local communities.”
The book is published in conjunction with GILES Ltd, a company based in the United Kingdom. Musical Crossroads: Stories Behind the Objects of African American Music will be available to the public for purchase on March 7th, 2023 wherever books are sold.
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National Museum of African American History Announces Book on Black Music’s Global Impact was originally published on hiphopwired.com
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