“Music Is History: An Evening with Questlove, with Hanif Abdurraqib,” will be held on Zoom at 8 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 14. The event is free and open to the public, suitable for those 12 and up. Registration is required.
In “Music Is History,” musician, bestselling author and Sundance award-winning director Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson harnesses his encyclopedic knowledge of popular music and his deep curiosity about history to examine America over the past 50 years. He observes, “I think of the America we live in as a series of songs.”
Music Is History focuses on the years 1971 to the present, not only the country’s most complex and rewarding half-century when it comes to the ways that pop culture and culturally diverse history intersect and interact, but also the years that overlap with Questlove’s own life. Music Is History moves fluidly from the personal to the political, examining events closely and critically, to unpeel and uncover previously unseen dimensions, and encouraging readers to do the same. Whether he is exploring how Black identity reshaped itself during the blaxploitation era, analyzing the assembly-line nature of disco and its hostility to Black genius, or remembering his own youth as a pop fan and what it taught him about America, Questlove finds the hidden connections in the American tapestry.
Questlove will be in conversation with Hanif Abdurraqib, a New York Times bestselling poet, essayist, and cultural critic. Abdurraqib was recently named a 2021 MacArthur Fellow, and he is also the host of the Sonos podcast “Object of Sound.”
The Oct. 14 webinar is sponsored by Family Action Network (FAN) in partnership with Evanston Township High School District 202, Baker Demonstration School, Beacon Academy, Bennett Day School, Catherine Cook School, Chiaravalle Montessori School, Christ Church Winnetka, Compass Health Center, Connections for the Homeless, Countryside Day School, Evanston Scholars, Foundation 65, Francis W. Parker School, Fusion Academy, Glencoe D35, Lake Bluff D65, Lake Forest Country Day School, Lake Michigan Association of Independent Schools, Latin School of Chicago, Loyola Academy, Magnetar Capital, Mindful Psychology Associates, Near North Montessori School, New Trier High School District 203, New Trier Parents’ Association, North Shore Country Day, Regina Dominican High School, Rogers Park Montessori School, Roycemore School, School of Education and Social Policy at Northwestern University, Science & Arts Academy, Stevenson High School District 125, The Family Institute at Northwestern University, University of Chicago Laboratory Schools Parents’ Association, Wolcott College Prep, Woodlands Academy, and Youth & Opportunity United.
The event will be recorded and available later on FAN’s website and YouTube channel. For more information, visit www.familyactionnetwork.net.