Q-Tip named as head of Kennedy Center’s Hip Hop Culture Council

Founding members include Questlove, Common, and Ninth Wonder.

March 07, 2018

The Kennedy Center has announced the Hip Hop Culture Council, a new initiative meant to "help the Kennedy Center create new pathways and deepen public knowledge of Hip Hop, contribute to broader Center-wide initiatives, and strengthen the burgeoning Hip Hop Culture program at the Kennedy Center." Q-Tip has been named as the Council's inaugural Artistic Director.


“The Kennedy Center’s Hip Hop Culture Council reflects the creative, social, and intellectual wealth of the Hip Hop community,” Q-Tip said in an introductory video about the new program, seen above. “The members are the embodiment of what we stand for and all that we aspire to achieve with the Hip Hop Culture program.”

Founding members of the Council also include Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson, Common, 9th Wonder, Fab 5 Freddy, Mimi Valdés, Grandmaster Caz, and LL Cool J, who became the first rapper to receive the Kennedy Center Honors last year.

“We are thrilled to be collaborating with such an extraordinary group of icons, innovators, and contributors to the Culture,” said Simone Eccleston, Director of Hip Hop Culture and Contemporary Music. “Q-Tip is deeply invested in creating a brain trust to advance and expand our work. As we continue to build the complex ecosystem that supports this program, the Council becomes an integral piece in sustaining Hip Hop’s presence at the Center.”

Read more about the initiative's first projects here.

Thumbnail courtesy of the Kennedy Center.

Q-Tip named as head of Kennedy Center’s Hip Hop Culture Council