Profile: Nelson George (1957-)

Nelson George was born September 1, 1957. He is a columnist, music and culture critic, journalist, and filmmaker. He has been nominated twice for the National Book Critics Circle Award. As of 2016, George has authored 21 novels and non-fiction books, including the bestseller The Michael Jackson Story, Blackface: Reflections on African-Americans and the Movies, Elevating the Game: Black Men and basketball, and Hip Hop America.

George is one of the first writers to document hip hop culture and is the author of several award-winning books on the subject, including Hip Hop America, The Death of Rhythm & Blues, and Russell Simmons’ autobiography Life and Def. He directed Queen Latifah in the HBO film Life Support, and executive produces VH1’s long-running Hip Hop Honors broadcast.

Throughout the ’80s and ’90s Nelson George was an columnist for Billboard magazine and the Village Voice newspaper, work that led him to write a series of award winning black music histories: Where Did Our Love Go: The Rise and Fall of the Motown Sound and The Death of Rhythm & Blues.

 

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