Bambaataa Appointed Visiting Scholar

Contact: Syl Kacapyr
Phone: (607) 255-7701
Email: vpk6[at]

Hip-Hop Pioneer, DJ Afrika Bambaataa, Appointed Visiting Scholar at Cornell University

ITHACA, N.Y. (Aug. 14, 2012) — Hip Hop founding father, Electro-Funk pioneer, and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame nominee, DJ Afrika Bambaataa, has been appointed to a three-year term as a visiting scholar at Cornell University.

>The appointment – made by Cornell University Library’s Hip Hop Collection in conjunction with Cornell’s Department of Music – marks the first such university distinction for a Hip Hop pioneer of Bambaataa’s stature.

Bambaataa will visit Cornell’s campus several days each year to talk to classes, meet with student and community groups, and perform the music he helped create and expand, which grew from a phenomenon in the South Bronx to a globally celebrated culture. His first visit in this position will take place in November.

“Bambaataa’s place in the history of hip hop is central and unquestioned,” said Steve Pond, chair of Cornell’s Department of Music. “Cornell is honored to be his academic home for the next three years.”

Cornell University Library is home to the largest national archive on Hip Hop culture, documenting its birth and growth by preserving thousands of recordings, flyers, photographs and other artifacts.

“Our goals are to preserve Hip Hop’s historical artifacts and to make them available for education and outreach. We are very much committed to incorporating the voices of those who created and advanced this culture in all of our efforts,” said Ben Ortiz, assistant curator of the Hip Hop Collection.

Bambaataa’s appointment has broad cross-disciplinary support from across Cornell. Faculty from the Music Department, the Africana Studies and Research Center, and the English Department have created associated classes and other academic programs, and contributions to his appointment have come from the Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education and the Office of Academic Diversity Initiatives.

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DJ Afrika Bambaataa, one of Hip Hop's founding fathers, has been appointed to a three-year term as a visiting scholar