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Kwami Coleman is a pianist, composer, and musicologist specializing in improvised music. His research interests include experimental music history, jazz history, the history and music cultures of the African Diaspora, the political economy of music, music technology, aesthetics, and cultural studies. Kwami is currently working on a monograph of Miles Davis and the jazz avant-garde and articles on black musical avant-gardism and historiography, the pianist/composer Andrew Hill, and the authenticity wrought by locality in African American music culture of the last century. He is also actively engaged in several music projects including his own recording of original compositions for small ensemble. Kwami is a founding member of the Afro-Latin@ Forum, a non-profit organization devoted to the study and increased visibility of Latinos of African descent in the United States, now housed in NYU’s Steinhardt School.
Teaching and Research Interests
improvised music; twentieth and twenty-first century music; experimental and electronic music; music technology and mass media; aesthetics and historiography; diasporic studies; race and ethnicity; modernity and postmodernity
B.A. & M.A. Music and Musicology, Hunter College, CUNY, 2007 Ph.D. Musicology, Stanford University, 2014
In February 2017, Gallatin Faculty member Kwami Coleman released the Kwami Coleman Trio's debut jazz album Local Music. The release features 10 original compositions, some of which interpolate field recordings that captured between 2014-16 in Coleman's neighborhood of Harlem.
Coleman, with the other members of the Kwami Coleman Trio, performed songs from the forthcoming album, Local Music, at Harlem Stage on March 2, 2016.