Rock & Roll Hall of Fame honors Sam Cooke
Posted on Sep 11th, 2005

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“A CHANGE IS GONNA COME: THE LIFE AND MUSIC OF SAM COOKE”
ROCK AND ROLL HALL OF FAME AND MUSEUM
HOSTS TENTH ANNUAL AMERICAN MUSIC MASTERS SERIES

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Inductees Aretha Franklin and Elvis Costello Headline

CLEVELAND (September 11, 2005) - The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum and Case Western Reserve University will celebrate the legacy of Sam Cooke during the Tenth Annual American Music Masters Series this November. Sam Cooke, considered by many to be the definitive soul singer and crossover artist, a model for African-American entrepreneurship and one of the first performers to use music as a tool for social change, was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in the inaugural class of 1986.

The tribute will extend from October 31 – November 6 and will feature panels, films, educational programs, a day-long conference at Case and two tribute concerts. The main tribute concert will feature Cooke’s pop and R&B material and the gospel show will focus on his spiritual music.

Tribute Concerts:
MAIN TRIBUTE
The main tribute concert will take place Saturday, November 5 at 8:00 p.m. at the State Theatre, Playhouse Square.
Scheduled to perform:
• Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Inductee Aretha Franklin
• Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Inductee Elvis Costello
• The Dixie Hummingbirds
• The Blind Boys of Alabama
• Cissy Houston
• Peter Wolf
• Taj Mahal
• Otis Clay
• William Bell
• More names will be released soon.
Tickets for this concert are $20, $30 and $40 and go on sale to Museum members on Monday, September 12 (call 216.515.8427 to purchase) and to the general public on Friday, September 16 (through Tickets.com).

Note: With the purchase of a full price Saturday tribute ticket, buyers will receive 50% off the price of a Sunday tribute concert ticket.
GOSPEL TRIBUTE:
The Gospel tribute will take place the following night, Sunday, November 6, at 6:00 p.m., also at the State Theatre, Playhouse Square.
Scheduled to perform:
• Aretha Franklin
• Lou Rawls
• The Blind Boys of Alabama
• The Dixie Hummingbirds
• Cissy Houston
• Taj Mahal
• Otis Clay
• More names will be released soon.

Tickets for this concert are $15, $25 and $35 and go on sale to Museum members on Monday, September 12 (call 216.515.8427) and to the general public on Friday, September 16 (through Tickets.com).

Note: Receive 50% off your purchase of a ticket to the gospel show with the purchase of a full price ticket to the Saturday concert. Group Sales packages are available for the Sunday Gospel concert for group of 20 or more (216-515.1228)

Conference:
A day-long conference will take place at Case Western Reserve University's Ford Theatre on Saturday, November 5, from 9:30 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. (registration begins at 9:00 a.m.)

The conference will feature:
• Keynote speaker Peter Guralnick (whose book Dream Boogie: The Triumph of Sam Cooke will be published by Little, Brown in mid-October)
• Chair of the NAACP and legendary Civil Rights activist Julian Bond
• Leroy Crume of the Soul Stirrers
• Ira Tucker of the Dixie Hummingbirds
• Legendary R&B MCs Early Byrd and Gorgeous George
• Sam Cooke's brother L.C. Cooke
• More names will be released soon.

Tickets to the conference are $30 go on sale on Friday, September 16 through Ticketmaster. (Note that the conference tickets are NOT available through the same outlet as the tribute concerts. Tribute concert tickets are available through Tickets.com
Sam Cooke was one of the most influential performers in the history of American popular music. His work cut across genres of gospel, R&B and pop, and Cooke is credited as being one of soul music’s primary architects.

Cooke’s career with the Soul Stirrers was enough to secure his place in the annals of music history, but his ambition and talent would take him much further still. He was a pioneering figure in African-American entrepreneurship, gaining remarkable artistic control of his music and the business surrounding it. Recognizing the importance of owning publishing rights to music, he founded his own record label and publishing company after being courted aggressively by the leading record labels of the day.

His extraordinary voice and unforgettable melodies appealed to black and white audiences, and the popularity of his music helped introduce many other black performers to mainstream audiences. When he died in 1964, Cooke was one of the most financially successful black artists up to that point.

Sam Cooke’s music expanded from its gospel roots into more mainstream R&B and pop genres while managing to keep the interest of many among his core gospel following. Cooke was also a force in harnessing the power of music for a socially conscientious cause. He recognized both the growing popularity of the early folk-rock balladeers and the changing political climate in America, using his own popularity and marketing savvy to raise the conscience of his listeners with such classics as “Chain Gang” and “A Change is Gonna Come.” In point of fact, the use of “A Change is Gonna Come” was granted to the Southern Christian Leadership Conference for fundraising by Cooke and his manager, Allen Klein, in 1964.

Sam Cooke was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a solo artist in the inaugural class of 1986.

The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum present this year’s American Music Masters, with the sponsorship participation of ABKCO Records and Case Western Reserve University.
For more information on the 2005 American Music Masters participants, stay tuned to the pressroom on www.rockhall.com.
The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum exists to educate its visitors, fans and scholars from around the world about the history and significance of rock and roll music. The Museum carries out this mission through its efforts to collect, preserve, exhibit and interpret this art form.

The Museum is open seven days a week from 10:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. On Wednesdays the Museum is open until 9:00 p.m. Museum admission is $20.00 for adults, $14.00 for seniors (60+), $11 for children (9-12) and children under 8 and Museum members are free.

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