The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum announces series of events for Black History Month celebration

Programming includes Sonic Sessions live concert series, an interview with inductee George Clinton of Parliament-Funkadelic, and more

CLEVELAND (January 23, 2015) – The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum will celebrate national Black History Month with a month-long series of programming, including a live interview with Inductee George Clinton of Parliament-Funkadelic, film screenings, and a live concert featuring funk musician Sinkane.

RockHall_logox175These programs are part of a series of events celebrating the 20th anniversary of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum and the return of the Induction Ceremony to Cleveland. Throughout 2015, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame will host a number of events to engage music fans, thank the community of supporters and celebrate the spirit and passion of rock and roll.

The complete schedule is below. Visit for the latest updates.

Friday, February 6

Sonic Sessions Concert Series with Sinkane
Klipsch Audio Main Stage, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame
8 p.m. Doors / 9 p.m. Show
with Muamin Collective
Tickets: $5.50 (includes tax)
On sale now at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame box office, or online at
This event is general admission, standing room only.
The Sonic Sessions are sponsored by Magic Hat Brewing Company

About Sinkane:
It’s soul music! And truly universal; uniting rhythm and styles from our world over to help you move, relate and be, Sinkane’s Mean Love rolls like an emotional, existential history of the artist. Co-produced with long-time Sinkane collaborator and childhood friend Greg Lofaro, Ahmed Gallab has created an altogether unique compound of sound, stylistically nostalgic and ultramodern at the same time. From Gallab’s childhood in Sudan there is a Pan-African influence of popular Sudanese music and haqibah, as well as distinct horn and synth arrangements more common to East Africa. This background merges with the lessons learned from Ahmed‘s stints with obsessive craftsmen such as Caribou, Yeasayer and Of Montreal, and especially the monumental task he underwent as musical director of‘ATOMIC BOMB! The Music of William Onyeabor.’ Gallab excavated and arranged a treasure trove of lost classics from the West African synth-pioneer to put together a now legendary series of performances. Alongside his band-mates in Sinkane (jaytram on drums, Ish Montgomery on bass, Jonny Lam on guitar), he also brought on guests Damon Albarn, David Byrne, The Lijadu Sisters, Money Mark and members of Hot Chip, LCD Soundsystem, The Rapture, and Blood Orange.


Unless noted, all events listed below are free with a reservation at or in-person at the Rock Hall Box Office.  Tickets for all FREE events will become available to Rock Hall Members on Monday, February 2 at 10 a.m. EST and will become available to the general public on Tuesday, February 3 at 10 a.m. EST.

Monday, February 9 at 7pm

Inductee Author Series with George Clinton of Parliament-Funkadelic
Black Box Theatre of the Tommy LiPuma Center for Creative Arts of Cuyahoga Community College (Tri-C), adjacent to the Rock Hall’s Library and Archives
2809 Woodland Avenue, Cleveland

George Clinton revolutionized R&B, twisting soul music into funk by fusing together influences as diverse as Jimi Hendrix, the Beatles, Phil Spector and Sly Stone. His Parliament-Funkadelic machine ruled black music during the seventies, capturing more than forty R&B hit singles (including three at #1) and recording three platinum albums. As a forefather of funk and godfather of hip-hop, samples of P-Funk can be heard on albums by Outkast, Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg, Busta Rhymes, Missy Elliot, De La Soul, Fishbone and many others. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1997.

Following this program, Clinton will sign copies of his newest memoir, BROTHAS BE, YO LIKE GEORGE, AINT’ THAT FUNKIN’ KINDA HARD ON YOU? (Atria Books; ISBN: 978-1-4767-5107-8; $27.00), written with New Yorker editor Ben Greenman.  In this memoir, Clinton not only shares a host of astonishing and brutally honest tales about his life and times during the wild sex and drug-fueled ‘70s and ‘80s, but also provides one-of-a-kind insight into the inner-workings of the music industry.

The Rock Hall’s Author Series brings journalists, critics and scholars to the Library and Archives for free readings and discussion sessions. Authors of both new books and classic texts will be invited on a regular basis.

Wednesday, February 18 at 7pm

An Evening with Hip-Hop Photographer Joe Conzo
With special guest Grandmaster Caz of legendary rap group the Cold Crush Brothers
Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum’s Foster Theater

Hip-hop photographer Joe Conzo will discuss his photographs featured in the Rock Hall’s latest exhibit, Fresh, Wild, Fly and Bold, which documents the pioneering days of hip-hop as well as life in the Bronx in the 1970s and 1980s.  Conzo will be joined by legendary hip-hop MC and DJ Grandmaster Caz of the Cold Crush Brothers.  Joe Conzo was the official photographer of the Cold Crush Brothers and the group is featured prominently in the exhibit.  The exhibit can be seen at the Museum’s Patty, Jay and Kizzie Baker Gallery. The collection of 26 photographs is courtesy of the Cornell Hip-Hop collection.

This event will also be streamed live on

About Joe Conzo

Born and raised in the Bronx, Joe Conzo Jr. acquired a flair for photography at the age of nine while attending the Agnes Russell School on the campus of Columbia University; later, advancing those skills at the School of Visual Arts in New York. In 1978, The Cold Crush Brothers would hire Conzo as their official photographer. From there, he would go on to capture images of Latino musician Tito Puente, Celia Cruz, the protests surrounding the film Fort Apache, The Bronx (starring Paul Newman) in 1981 and scenes of life and urban decay in New York City in the 1970s and 1980s. Conzo’s images have been used in numerous publications, including VIBEComplex and Esquire, and have also appeared on HBO, VH1 and the 1993 comedy film CB4 starring Chris Rock. His first book Born in the Bronx: A Visual Record of the Early Days of Hip-hop was released in 2007. Today, Conzo works for the New York City Fire Department, where he is the vice president of emergency services. For more on Joe Conzo, Jr., visit

About Grandmaster Caz

The first simultaneous DJ and MC in hip-hop history, Grandmaster Caz is perhaps best known for rhymes he didn’t even perform – namely, the uncredited verses that Big Bank Hank borrowed for the groundbreaking Sugarhill Gang 1979 single “Rapper’s Delight.” The fact that neither Caz nor his group the Cold Crush Brothers ever recorded an official full-length album also doesn’t help shed much light on his legacy.

Grandmaster Caz was born Curtis Fisher and grew up in the Bronx, where DJ Kool Herc began playing block parties in the early 1970s. After honing his skills, Caz teamed up with JDL (aka Jerry Dee Lewis) to form the Notorious Two, and during this period became the first DJ to rap while handling records on the turntables. Both Caz and JDL joined the Cold Crush Brothers circa 1978-1979, with Caz becoming a full-time MC.

Caz did find a measure of underground success with the Cold Crush Brothers. They recorded several singles for the Tuff City label during the early ’80s (compiled in 1996 on Fresh Wild Fly & Bold), and became one of the most popular live rap groups in New York during the pre-Run-D.M.C. era. Most prominently, the Cold Crush Brothers appeared in the 1983 old school hip-hop film Wild Style, which has since become a cult classic; they recorded the theme song and engaged in an MC battle with their chief rivals, Grand Wizard Theodore and the Fantastic Five.

Friday, February 20 at 7pm

Film Screening of Underground Dance Masters: Final History of a Forgotten Era and lecture/dance demonstration with director Thomas Guzman-Sanchez
Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum’s Foster Theater

This program will feature a film screening of Underground Dance Masters: Final History of a Forgotten Era (2012), followed by a discussion and a dance demonstration hosted by director Thomas Guzman-Sanchez and producer Paul Guzman-Sanchez.  Thomas Guzman-Sanchez will also discuss the companion book to the film.

About the Film

Underground Dance Masters: Final History of a Forgotten Era chronicles a revolutionary period in dance and pop culture from 1965 to 1995.  The film profiles a very special collective of Black, Latino and White individuals who are the innovators, originators and true masters of the Urban Dance forms known as Funk Boogaloo, Robot, Locking, Zigzag, Popping and Rocking/B-boying.

The artists profiled in Underground Dance Masters: Final History of a Forgotten Era were rarely seen by a large portion of society, and thus were not afforded much mass media attention. Nineteen years in the making, this feature documentary takes viewers on a guided tour of a forgotten era—an underground culture and lifestyle in which a multicultural collective of urban street dancers created one of the most influential art forms in contemporary history.

Using rare archival footage and interviews that detail the lives and careers of these OG (“Original Generation”) dance groups, Guzman-Sanchez establishes an undisputable timeline that traces the evolution of these Urban Dance forms, showing both the positive and negative sides of this underground scene.

About the Director

Thomas Guzman-Sanchez is a California native (SoCal Latino) born in 1958 and raised in Reseda. Thomas is an OG (original generation) dance master and a co-founding member of the legendary dance group Chain Reaction. Since 1973, he has been both an originator and pioneer of the dance forms of Crossover Locking, Zig-Zag, Popping, and Funk Boogaloo, which have influenced millions worldwide in what the many refer to as Hip-hop dance. He has choreographed and performed in countless TV shows, videos, commercials, and feature films. In 1984, he formed the United Street Force, which has performed at the White House. In 2008 he was the recipient of the prestigious Christena L. Schlundt Lecture Award in Dance Studies at U.C. Riverside and honored as a key speaker and presenter at the Popular Culture Association / American Culture Association PCA/ACA conference in San Francisco California. Today, he continues to tour the world teaching and inspiring young dancers.

About the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum:

The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum’s mission is to engage, teach and inspire through the power of rock and roll. The institution carries out its mission by giving voice to the stories of the people, artifacts and events that shaped rock and roll — through Museum exhibits, materials in the Museum’s Library and Archives, traveling exhibitions, and a wide array of innovative educational programs and activities. The 150,000 square-foot Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum, located in Cleveland’s rapidly developing North Coast Harbor, is home to major artifact collections, four state-of-the-art theaters, and year-round educational and concert programming.

The Museum is open seven days a week from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. On Wednesdays (and Saturdays through Labor Day), the Museum is open until 9 p.m. Museum admission is $22 for adults, $18 for adult residents of Greater Cleveland, $17 for seniors (65+), $13 for youth (9-12), children under 8 are free. A 6% Admission Tax that goes to support Cleveland Metropolitan Schools is added to each ticket at purchase. Museum Members are always admitted free, for information or to join the membership program call 216.515.8425. For general inquiries, please call 216.781.ROCK (7625) or visit  The Ohio Arts Council supports the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame with state tax dollars to encourage economic growth, educational excellence and cultural enrichment for all Ohioans. The Museum is also generously funded by Cuyahoga County residents through Cuyahoga Arts and Culture.





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