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Posted by Robert
Rap News Network
2/7/2005 10:47:32 AM

Tags and topics realted to this article include Public Enemy.

Clive Davis Department of Recorded Music at NYU Revisits Landmark Hip Hop Album Rapper Chuck D and members of Public Enemy join film director Brett Ratner and a host of critics, producers, engineers and executives for seminar exploring The Making of Public Enemy's "It Takes A Nation Of Millions To Hold Us Back"  

On Friday, February 25 and Saturday, February 26 a two-day seminar at New York University (NYU) will examine the making of what music critics and hip hop aficionados widely regard as one of hip hop's seminal albums, Public Enemy's It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back.  The 1988 Def Jam recording was a critical and commercial success, spinning off the controversial singles "Don't Believe the Hype" and "Bring The Noise."  The album made stars of MCs Chuck D and Flava Flav and ushered in an era of political rap often referred to as the "golden age" of the genre.  The seminar, sponsored by NYU's Clive Davis Department of Recorded Music, will feature a documentary film of Public Enemy's 1988 and 2002 tours of Great Britain as well as panel discussions on the making of the album and the political climate that inspired the artists.  All events will be held at NYU's Tischman Auditorium (40 Washington Square South between McDougal and Sullivan) and are free and open to the public.  

"Nation of Millions was one of the most important albums of its time.  The lyrics were hard-hitting and confrontational and the music was visionary. It captures an era in which a certain type of politics was possible," says Jason King, organizer of the event and associate chair of the Clive Davis Department of Recorded Music.  "This seminar will be the first time that many of the players -- the producers, engineers, the artists -- have been together since 1988.  We'll explore their memories of the making of the music and find out what's happened to them.  They've all gone on to big things."  

On Friday, February 25, the seminar gets underway at 6:00 p.m. with the film screening, "Public Enemy: London Calling."  The documentary film, directed by Lathan Hodge, is a work-in-progress that follows Public Enemy's British tour and features never-before-seen footage of the group's performances.  That same evening, beginning at 7:45, a panel of top journalists and critics who covered the era will discuss the music legacy of Public Enemy and It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back.  Participants include Robert Christgau, Nelson George, Vivien Goldman, John Leland, Alan Light and Jon Caramanica.  

On Saturday, February 26 at noon, the first panel of the day will feature members of the Def Jam and Rush Arts teams -- the creative staff behind the album's A&R, publicity, management and marketing.  Participants include film director Brett Ratner (Rush Hour) -- who got his start directing Public Enemy's first video, "Louder Than a Bomb" -- as well as Bill Adler, Lisa Cortes, Charlotte Hunter, Biff Warren, Kelly Haley and others.  The day continues with "On Hip Hop and Political Activism: A Conversation with photographer Glen E. Friedman and author and activist Jeff Chang" (1:45 p.m.).  Friedman, the author of Fuck You Heroes and The Idealist, photographed and designed the album's cover.  Chang is the author of the new book Can't Stop Won't Stop: The History of the Hip Hop Generation.  At 3:30 p.m., the panel "Producing The Album" will bring together the album's original engineers, the owners of the Greene Street studio (where the album was cut) and members of the Bomb Squad production team for the first time since 1988.  Participants include Rod Hui, Steve Loeb, Nick Sansano, Chris Shaw, Hank Shocklee, Keith Shocklee and Chairman Mao.  

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