“You never thought that hip-hop would take it this far,” and I imagine nobody in the first thirty years of hip-hop did. Radio play? Yup. Magazines? Okay. Grammys? Probably. But fellowships at Harvard?
If anyone deserves a fellowship at an elite institution it’s 9th Wonder, who is one of the premier educators and practitioners of hip-hop. 9th has been teaching a soul sampling course at Duke University, and over the course of his career he has approached his music with an unparalleled level of intelligence and devotion. That devotion will be on display in The Harvard Fellowship, a film directed by Kenneth Price (who collaborated with 9th on The Wonder Years) that will document 9th’s year at Harvard, and hopefully dispel with the idea that “hip-hop” and “entertainment” are synonymous.
“The Harvard Fellow follows one of hip-hop’s most dynamic artists, 9th Wonder through a year of lecturing and research at Harvard University. While at Harvard, 9th will have an office on campus, teach a class on the history of hip-hop, complete a research project and further explore hip-hop’s history and culture in an academic setting.”
The research component to the project is especially interesting. 9th will spend the year unearthing and cataloguing the samples that make up his 10 favorite albums. For more information on The Harvard Fellow, visit the project’s website, and be sure to make even a nominal donation to The Harvard Fellow’s Kickstarter, because after all, money only grows on trees after you get a degree from Harvard.