Black History Month Presentation at A-B Tech Open to the Public

Book cover with ragtime musicians
February 10, 2017

A-B Tech will host a presentation in honor of Black History Month by Dr. David Gilbert, an assistant professor in History at Mars Hill University, at 3 p.m. Tuesday, February 28 in Ferguson Auditorium on the Asheville campus. The event is free and open to the public.

The Songs of the Freedom Struggle: From Rock and Soul to Rap will explore the hidden meaning in popular music, according to Gilbert. “I hope to get people to think about music they like through a different lens. There is a deeper, and sometimes hidden, meaning circulated within the music especially by black musicians,” said.

 “I will present a talk about the African American freedom struggle, focusing on the popular music of the eras,” Gilbert said.  “While I will analyze and narrate aspects of the political and social civil rights era, I will concentrate on the popular sounds that dominated the radio, giving an unusual account of the post-war black fights against segregation and inequality.”

Gilbert is the author of an award-winning book on black music and culture, “The Product of Our Souls: Ragtime, Race, and the Birth of the Manhattan Musical Marketplace.” This work won a Choice award from the American Library Association in 2015.

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