Funkology: A Conversation with Bootsy Collins and Dr. Scot Brown will celebrate the cultural and historical legacy of vital aspects of black music, IU professor Tyron Cooper said in an email.
The event, which will be at 5 p.m. Tuesday evening at IU Cinema, will welcome groundbreaking funk musician William “Bootsy” Collins and funk music scholar Scot Brown to IU Cinema for a lecture and conversation.
“Events like these shine a light on IU as a viable space and place for preserving, celebrating and transmitting black music and culture in a meaningful way where the voices of artists like Bootsy, who are steeped in the African-American community, are positioned at the forefront,” Cooper said.
Cooper is also the director of IU’s Archives of African American Music and Culture.
The event will be followed by a reception at the Neal-Marshall Black Culture Center. Collins’ son, Ouiwey Collins, is set to emcee at the event.
Bootsy will be signing copies of his new album, “World Wide Funk.” The album was released in October 2017 and will be sold at the event.
Cooper said Bootsy Collins’ music has been influential in the growth and history of music.
“Bootsy Collins' career in the music industry spans 50 years, which includes his early stints with the architect of funk, James Brown and funk pioneer George Clinton, his own band as well as his collaborations and impact on subsequent artists from the Red-Hot Chili Peppers to Dr. Dre,” Cooper said.
James Wimbush, IU's vice president for Diversity, Equity and Multicultural Affairs, said Bootsy Collins is an important reminder of the past.
"For many faculty and staff, including myself, I think hearing from Mr. Collins will produce feelings of nostalgia," he said. "For the younger generation, particularly students, I hope this appearance will illustrate the connection between today's music and the past."
He said above all, Collins' persona is worth experiencing.
"Most importantly, I believe that given Mr. Collins' charismatic personality, all who attend Funkology will have an enjoyable and educational experience," Wimbush said.
Cooper said Collins represents a classic encapsulation of funk music and musical persona.
“As a multifaceted instrumentalist, songwriter, band leader and producer, he represents the definitive musical character and psychological essence of funk music where collective groovability and attitude of liberation converge to form a distinct way of creating and being,” Cooper said.
He said students and community members should come to the event to celebrate Collins’ legacy and recognize his impact and influence.
“If your life has ever been touched by soul, funk, gospel, hip hop or other forms of pop music, you have most likely been impacted by Bootsy Collins' musical output or attitude,” Cooper said. “You will not only find him to be the true funkateer, but you will be blown away by the vast musical and cultural experiences he has engaged and impacted throughout his career.”
Cooper said Collins is so influential that his name is virtually synonymous with his art.
“Bootsy is funk, and funk can be identified at the center of the foundation of pop music and pop culture,” Cooper said. “Indeed, Bootsy is extremely significant.”
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