The trend of MCs entering the classroom is about to continue as M1 (of dead prez) prepares his Scholar-Artist in-residence for the upcoming semester at Haverford College, a liberal arts school located just outside of Philadelphia.
In a move sponsored by the Africana Studies department, AcadeMIX hip-hop symposium and other campus organizations, bringing M1 on board will give him responsibilities ranging from giving lectures to running creative workshops and panel discussions. While M1 will be busy with these academic duties, his main focus will be completing The Africana Digital Project, an experimental multimedia music venture from Haverford’s faculty and students manifesting in an M1-produced EP available for free download after its completion.
“[I’m] excited about working on The Africana Digital Media project and doing some groundbreaking collaborative work,” M1 said in a statement. The long time political wordsmith hopes to employ a range of sound and visual concepts to expand upon the concentration of Africana studies.
Assistant Professor of Anthropology Jesse Shipley, who played a central role in convincing M1 to take on the residency, commented that, “to have him engage with faculty and students in processes of production is a creative forum for both sides, because in some ways it brings a different kind of energy to what he’s doing, and it brings his kind of energy and his engagement as a performer and musician to the campus.”
The transition from the studio to the classroom has been a theme for multiple artists recently. Bun B, 9th Wonder and Swizz Beatz have all taught classes at and universities in recent years.
Unfortunately for the public, all M1 related activities are for the Haverford College students and faculty only. Nevertheless, be on the lookout for The Africana Digital Project and dead prez’s forthcoming album Information Age. —Troy Mathews