national museum of African American music:a recap of the 2019 legends gala

The National Museum of African American Music’s 6th Annual Legends Gala held in Nashville TN, had a lot of celebrities, media, and iconic musicians George Clinton, Doug E. Fresh and Gloria Gaynor were awarded with the Rhapsody & Rhythm Award.

Chrissy Walter, Doug E. Fresh and Gloria Gaynor. Photo by Jason Kempin

Cameo Bobo pictured with Dougie Fresh, Bobby Jones and Gloria Gaynor

(photo credits Anthony Beasley and Jade Newborn)


Vanderbilt University, the presenting sponsor for the event announced a commitment to join with the National Museum of African American Music in a long-term partnership to enrich educational and research opportunities around the musical legacy of African-American composers, performers and supporters and their impact on American culture and musical history. The university’s pledge of foundational support, which totals $2 million in in-kind contribution.



Nicholas S. Zeppos attends The Celebration of Legends Gala (Photo by Jason Kempin Getty Images)


Vanderbilt's relationship with the National Museum of African American Music began several years ago, and the ties were strengthened by the late Vice Chancellor for University Affairs and Athletics and Athletic Director David Williams II, who served as co-chair of the museum’s campaign steering committee and was an early supporter.


"I am deeply grateful to Chancellor Zeppos and the entire Vanderbilt University leadership team for their commitment to and investment in our mission. This partnership with one of the nation’s best research universities will dramatically enrich the reach and impact of our programming, and we look forward to the many new opportunities we will be able to offer our community and visitors as a result,” H. Beecher Hicks III, president and chief executive officer of the National Museum of African American Music, said.


H. Beecher Hicks III, Chrissy Walter, Gloria Gaynor, Doug E. Fresh and Dionne Lucas attend The Celebration of Legends Gala 2019. (Photo by Jason Kempin Getty Images)

The museum, scheduled to open in downtown Nashville in early 2020, will be one of the only such resources in the country solely dedicated to educating, preserving and celebrating the influence that African Americans have had on all genres of music—including classical, country, jazz and hip hop. The gala an excellent event, brought much excitement and anticipation of the upcoming game changing museum set to be located in downtown Nashville on Broadway and 5th bringing a Touch of Soul to the heavily toured area of Music City.

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