Gimel Keaton, better known by his stage name, Young Guru, will serve as an artist-in-residence at the Thornton School of Music for the 2013-14 academic year. The Grammy-nominated audio engineer and disc jockey is well known for his work with rapper Jay Z and his album mixing for artists Beyoncé, Eminem, Kanye West and Drake.
Guru will give lectures on electronic music, hip hop, songwriting and the music industry to students in the contemporary music division of Thornton, giving them the opportunity to hear from a professional with 12 years of experience in the music industry. Young Guru will also consult with Thornton faculty to develop a new degree program in music production.
Past musicians who have served as Thornton artists-in-residence include guitarist Steve Miller and R&B composer and songwriter Patrice Rushen.
Young Guru’s passion isn’t solely dedicated to music; the artist also has many philanthropic pursuits, working through The Young Guru Foundation and its partnership with SAE Institute Cape Town and Heal the Hood — organizations that provide scholarships for higher education and mentorship to help underserved young adults reach their career goals. The foundation works with students ranging in age from juniors in high school to graduate students.
“I would like our culture to understand its value and its reference point in history,” Young Guru said in a press release. “I want it to be fully understood by people, to be studied and revered the same way you would study jazz artists or opera at a class in a university.”
Young Guru has previously lectured at New York University’s Clive Davis Institute of Recorded Music, Emory University, Loyola University New Orleans, Middle Tennessee State University and Drexel University. He has also lectured at the headquarters of Pandora and Google.
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