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Author, Jazz Musician to Present at Ohio Wesleyan University
Musical Performance to Be Part of the Sagan National Colloquium Lecture

October 15, 2007

James McBride
DELAWARE, OHIO – James McBride, an award-winning author and well-known jazz musician and composer, will present “Chorus, Verse, and Chorus: The Raw Bones of Rap’s Rise into Popular Culture” at Ohio Wesleyan University Oct. 23 as part of the 22nd annual Sagan National Colloquium. McBride, along with his five piece jazz band, will give a musical performance during and following the lecture. Free and open to the public, the event will start at 7:30 p.m. in University Hall’s Gray Chapel. 61 S. Sandusky St.

McBride is best known for his book exploring race and identity in America—“The Color of Water”—which spent more than two years on the New York Times’ bestseller list. A product of New York City public schools, McBride studied music composition at Oberlin College’s Conservatory of Music and earned a master’s degree in journalism from Columbia University. In addition to his editorial success, he also has written songs for musicians including Anita Baker and Grover Washington Jr.

At Ohio Wesleyan, McBride will discuss the influence of Africa and American urban areas on the evolution of African American musical styles such as jazz, rhythm and blues, and particularly rap. As he wrote in National Geographic magazine in April 2007, McBride believes that “at its best, hip-hop lays bare the empty moral cupboard that is our generation’s legacy. This music that once made visible the inner city culture of America’s greatest social problem, its legacy of slavery, has taken the dream deferred to a global scale.”

The theme of this year’s Colloquium is “Cities and Suburbs: Life in a Metropolitan World.” Fourteen nationally acclaimed experts will speak on campus about various theme-related topics through mid-November. Established in 1984, the colloquium was endowed by 1948 Ohio Wesleyan graduates John and Margaret (Pickett) Sagan. A full schedule of this year’s events is available at snc.owu.edu.

Ohio Wesleyan University is an undergraduate liberal arts college that transforms the lives of its students through a combination of rigorous academics, mentoring relationships, and real-world experiences. Featured in the book “Colleges That Change Lives,” the private university’s 1,850 students come from 40 states and 45 countries. Visit www.owu.edu for more information.