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Mississippi College

Mississippi College Professor Lewis Oswalt Serves as Scholar at America’s Music Series

August 23, 2013

Mississippi College professor Lewis Oswalt will serve as the project scholar at this fall’s America’s Music film series at the Quisenberry Library in Clinton.

Clinton’s public library and Mississippi State University are the only two sites in the Magnolia State selected to host the program.  The public is invited to see the movies from September 12- October 17 at the Clinton library at 605 East Northside Drive. The event is free.

Oswalt will field questions and facilitate discussions from audience members following the films in the six-part series.

Nationwide, there are dozens of sites selected to host the films that explore America’s popular music, touching on blues, bluegrass, gospel, jazz, Broadway, hip hop and rock and roll.

Oswalt is an award-winning national expert on church music dating back centuries ago.

“The target audience for America’s Music is everyone, regardless of age or musical taste – those who love making music and those who listen,” Oswalt said.

The documentary films will highlight all types of modern American music that have come to be treasured by listeners worldwide.

“The Quisenberry Library offers an outstanding venue for the films and discussions,” Oswalt said. “I’m grateful for the diligence of Kimberly Corbett in working to secure the grant, and am honored to be part of the project.”

Oswalt is well-known to Clinton residents as the radio voice of the Clinton High Arrows during CHS football games every fall.

Unit one will explore the blues and gospel music in a Martin Scorsese film. Actor and filmmaker Clint Eastwood will focus on piano blues.

In the second unit on Tin Pan Alley and Broadway presented by filmmaker Michael Cantor, the series will spotlight the early days of Broadway through the 1960s of “West Side Story” and the theatre productions of the early 21st Century. Jazz is the third unit followed by country and bluegrass in the 4th installment.

After part five showcases rock and roll – from the British invasion to soul and punk music – the series wraps up with its focus on Mambo, hip hop and Latin music in the USA.

The Tribeca Film Institute and National Endowment for the Humanities funded the project.

Kim Corbett, manager of the Quisenberry Library, welcomes Mississippians to see the music series, and believes visitors will enjoy every moment.

The Mississippi Delta is the birthplace of the blues, and that should spark interest. Music rock and roll icons like Elvis Presley also call Mississippi home.

“It will be a lot of fun. It will be interesting because we are next to the Blues Trail,” Corbett said.

The series on American music will be broadcast at the library's 150-seat meeting room on Thursday evenings beginning at 7 p.m.

For more information, contact Lewis Oswalt at 601.925.3446 or the Quisenberry Library at 601.924.5684.

Photo: Mississippi College professor Lewis Oswalt will serve as the project scholar for this fall's America's Music film series.