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Thursday, April 26 • 3:45pm - 5:45pm
Balladeers

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  1. Sonnet Retman "Swing it, Sister”: The Blanche Calloway Story"
  2. RJ Smith "Deep Cover: After Hours with Dorothy Donegan"
  3. Charles Aaron "Nippy’s Got the Range: How Whitney Houston Snatched Back the Ballad and Set It Free"
  4. Nate Chinen "Wild Women Don't Worry: Cécile McLorin Salvant's Politics of Desire"
Moderator: Carl Wilson


Speakers
avatar for Charles Aaron

Charles Aaron

Charles Aaron is a writer and editor who lives in Durham, N.C. with his wife Tristin, son Oscar, dog Bessie, and cat Milo. His favorite kinds of pie, in order, are Key Lime, Apple, and Cherry. Donations are appreciated."Nippy’s Got the Range: How Whitney Houston Snatched Back t... Read More →
NC

Nate Chinen

Nate Chinen is Director of Editorial Content at WBGO, in partnership with NPR Music. A former music critic for The New York Times and columnist for JazzTimes, he’s a 10-time winner of the Helen Dance-Robert Palmer Award for Excellence in Writing. His work appears in Best Music... Read More →
SR

Sonnet Retman

Sonnet Retman is an Associate Professor of American Ethnic Studies at the University of Washington where she teaches courses in African American literary and cultural studies.  She is the author of Real Folks: Race and Genre in the Great Depression (Duke 2011). She is working her way towards a book about race, technology, and blues modernity.  She is also a collaborator with the Women Who Rock Research and Digital Archive Project."'Swing it, Sister': The Blanche Calloway Story"There are so many ways to tell the story of Blanche Calloway, yet surprisingly few people have tried. If hepster Cab Calloway is often understood as a predecessor of Prince in his androgynous charisma, sexy swagger, and zoot suit flamboyance, it was his older sister, Blanche Calloway, who taught Cab his first moves: Blanche to Cab to Prince. If female bandleaders had their moment in the 1940s with “all-girl” swing bands, when men had gone to war, in the early 1930s Blanche was the first woman bandleader, of an all-male band, no less: Blanche Calloway and Her Joy Boys, featuring saxophonist Ben Webster and drummer Cozy Cole, and at least on one occasion, Joy Girl, pianist Mary Lou Williams, among others. If R & B star Ruth Brown was “discovered” by Ahmet... Read More →
avatar for RJ Smith

RJ Smith

RJ Smith is author most recently of American Witness: The Art and Life of Robert Frank. He’s been an editor at Cincinnati magazine and Los Angeles magazine. He has written for GQ, the New York Times, Spin, the Village Voice, Yeti and more. He is currently working on a biography... Read More →
avatar for Carl Wilson

Carl Wilson

Carl Wilson is the music critic at Slate, as well as the author of Let’s Talk About Love: Why Other People Have Such Bad Taste (Bloomsbury), and a contributor to Billboard, The New York Times, and other publications. He lives in Toronto, where he helps curate the Trampoline H... Read More →


Thursday April 26, 2018 3:45pm - 5:45pm
Learning Labs MoPOP, 325 5th Avenue N, Seattle, WA 98109

Attendees (10)