By providing a focused examination of the historical development of Black music artistry, William C. Banfield formulates a usable philosophy tied to how such music is made, shaped, and functions. He explores Black music culture from three angles: history, education, and the creative work of the musicians-engaging the reader in a conversation about the aesthetics and meanings that inform the cultural codes of Black music.
William C. Banfield is professor of Africana Studies/Music and Society at Berklee College of Music. A composer, jazz guitarist, and recording artist, he has been hired by the Quincy Jones Foundation to head up a national team to write a new American Popular Music national curriculum. He is the author of Musical Landscapes in Color: Conversations with Black American Composers (Scarecrow, 2003) and Black Notes: Essays of a Musician Writing in a Post-Album Age (Scarecrow, 2004).