Novelle Key

Independent Historian

Novelle Key is an undergraduate at the University of Washington’s Seattle campus and will be graduating with the class of 2018. She is majoring in political science and minoring in diversity. After graduation Novelle intends to pursue a graduate degree. She is from Tacoma, Washington, where she attended Tacoma Community College through the Running Start program prior to attending UW. Novelle became a contributing writer for Black Past while taking Professor Quintard Taylor’s history class on African Americans in the American West.

Lou Rawls (1933-2006)

Lou Rawls was an award-winning singer and songwriter famous for his luxurious baritone singing voice and four-octave vocal range. He is most well-known for his hit song “You’ll Never Find Another Love Like Mine,” and experienced the height of his musical career throughout the 1960s … Read MoreLou Rawls (1933-2006)

Lionel Richie and the Commodores (1967- )

The Commodores were a rhythm and blues/ funk group popular throughout the 1970s and 1980s and one of the most successful acts signed to Motown records. They produced numerous chart-topping and award-winning records. Lionel Richie, their lead vocalist, attained superstardom after leaving to pursue a … Read MoreLionel Richie and the Commodores (1967- )

Usher (1978- )

Usher Raymond IV, commonly known by his stage name Usher, is an award-winning singer, songwriter, and actor. Usher rose to superstardom as a rhythm and blues/ pop musician and has established himself as one of the most successful R&B artists of his era and one … Read MoreUsher (1978- )

Hank Ballard and the Midnighters (1950-1965); (Hank Ballard 1927-2003)

Hank Ballard and the Midnighters was a rhythm and blues band that were a major influence on the rock and roll genre beginning in the 1950s. They recorded a number of hugely popular songs and were known as the most risqué R&B group of their … Read MoreHank Ballard and the Midnighters (1950-1965); (Hank Ballard 1927-2003)

Erykah Badu (1971- )

Erykah Badu is an award-winning singer and songwriter who has been hailed as one of the most gifted rhythm and blues singers of the current era and has earned her title as the Queen of neo-soul; a mix of modern soul and R&B with influences from hip-hop, jazz, pop, African music, … Read MoreErykah Badu (1971- )

Alicia Keys (1981- )

Alicia Keys is a rhythm and blues singer, songwriter, and pianist known for her unique blend of classical, R&B, jazz, neo-soul, and hip-hop.  She writes, produces, and sings her own songs. Her stage name ‘Keys’ alludes to her being a pianist. Keys was born Alicia Augello Cook on January 25, … Read MoreAlicia Keys (1981- )

Larry Hoover (1950- )

Larry Hoover is a founder and former leader of the Chicago street gang the Gangster Disciples, and was the Vice President of the Black Gangster Disciple Nation when he combined his gang with the Black Disciple Nation temporarily. Hoover was born on November 30, 1950 in Jackson, Mississippi. … Read MoreLarry Hoover (1950- )

Betty Wright (1953- )

Betty Wright is an award-winning soul singer and songwriter who was highly popular throughout the 1970s and 1980s. She was the first black woman to earn a gold album on her own record label. She released her first album at 14, My First Time Around, her first hit pop song … Read MoreBetty Wright (1953- )