About Our purpose, inception, & creators

About the Black Music Project – its purpose, its inception, and its creators

Our Mission

To use the power of graphics and storytelling to recognize, promote and preserve the idea that the history of Black music is the story of America.

Our team

Christopher Fuller

Christopher Fuller

Founder and Director of The Black Music Project, and Owner of Griot’s Eye Inc.

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Christopher Fuller

Christopher Fuller is a well-known graphic facilitator, illustrator, and visual storyteller and the owner of Griot’s Eye Inc. He is considered one of the graphic facilitation communities leading innovators and pioneers, having worked in that unique industry for 30 years across 5 continents and nearly 20 countries. He helped bring graphic facilitation methodology to Europe, Asia and the rest of the world as a core staff member of MG Taylor Corp. through its partnership with big consulting in the mid-90s. Mr. Fuller originated the Black Music Project idea in February 2018 when he sketched out the major musical genres birthed by African-Americans in the drawing seen in the Black Music Project’s introductory video. That drawing and its genre mapping are the catalyst and backbone of this site.


Mister Fuller is forever grateful for the insight and ideas of his fellow TBMP dreamers who joined the journey to help tell the story of African-American music and its impact on American culture.  He would like to give a special shout-out to the following: Callum Griffith, whom he enlisted in 2018 to assist with this idea and whose contributions helped broaden the scope and vision of The Black Music Project; brother, Marc Fuller, writer, editor, information source gatherer, and oversight; and Alex Beige, website design coding and visual design look and feel assistance. In addition to those esteemed team members, Mr. Fuller also recognizes the early and continued sounding board advice given to him by fellow graphic facilitator Brandon Black and artist Chakura Kineard. He reserves a special thank you for his sister Gail, whose sage input and wisdom helped shape the organization and direction of this project.


Christopher would also like to thank all those musicians, performers, and music industry people who have been the soundtrack to his entire life. Whether that was listening to his family’s Motown, Stax, and Philadelphia International LPs and 8-tracks as a child; the homemade cassettes he taped off of WBLS radio growing up in New Jersey listening to early hip-hop; the neosoul that sounded from his then state-of-the-art 10-discs CD changer in the back of his ‘95 Saturn; or the now constant mix of old and new school he streams off various platforms through his smartphone — Black music will always be his muse. 


And finally he would like to announce that he and the site owe a huge debt of gratitude to Nikole Hannah-Jones and her contributors to the 1619 Project for the inspiration that work has had on The Black Music Project.


Mr Fuller is a Visual Arts graduate of Rutgers University. He lives in Los Angeles, California.

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Callum Griffith

Callum Griffith

Project manager, Creative Director, UI/UX Designer, and Owner of digital design agency Composite.

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Callum Griffith

Callum is the founder & CEO at Composite – a data-driven branding & UI/UX design studio. He first began work on the Black Music Project in 2018 while designing a logo and website for Christopher Fuller’s business: Griot’s Eye. While meeting to work on the logo, Christopher pitched the idea and early graphics he had created that would eventually become the Black Music Project. Callum was excited to help and contributed to the project’s early inception as an idea and helped to conceptualize what the project could be in a digital medium. Since then, Callum has helped in many roles but primarily as project manager, UI/UX designer, web developer, and marketer. Since its early days, the project has seen several entirely different versions that were nearly completed and then scrapped due to accessibility or experiential constraints and all while growing in scope and ambition. Building and rebuilding the Black Music Project has been a work of passion and a momentous undertaking that Callum is incredibly proud to be part of.

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Marc Fuller

Marc Fuller

Researcher, Writer, and Project Development

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Marc Fuller

Marc Fuller is fortunate enough to have Christopher Fuller as a brother, which led to his involvement in the Black Music Project. He lends a hand with research, writing, and overall project development. His interest in history, especially African-American history, and music have only grown since he started work on this project. It has been a labor of love that has helped him through these tough times.

Mr. Fuller is a graduate of Georgetown University (Hoya Saxa!) and in the early 1990s helped open a Cajun restaurant and jazz club called Red, Hot & Blues in Prague. He is married to Kristine and tormented by a Chihauhau-Boston Terrier mix named Alice. He currently lives and works in Portland, Oregon and implores Black folks to visit and move here.

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Alex Beige

Alex Beige

Front-End Web Developer

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Alex Beige

Alex Beige is a freelance web designer and developer currently based in New York, New York. Originally from Alabama, Alex grew up listening to the Motown hits and R&B favorites of his parents—including his great uncle Eddie Levert of the O'Jays. Alex is delighted to contribute to the website development of the Black Music Project. The artistry of the African American musical tradition has not only intertwined itself into the essence of American culture, but also transcends nations as it finds itself reinvented and reimagined around the world.

Visit Alex’s virtual paradise at alex-beige.com

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Alyssa Harris

Alyssa Harris

Vocalist, Songwriter, & Music Educator

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Alyssa Harris

Alyssa Harris is a professional vocalist, songwriter, and music educator based in Austin Texas. She has performed internationally and on a variety of different stages — from the lights of Los Angeles to the Las Vegas Strip, from world famous Beale Street in Memphis to the Seven Seas on some of the world's most luxurious cruise lines. Her passion for music and performing reaches beyond the stage as she is constantly immersed in music education, specifically, Black music history. After completing a Master's Degree in History and Culture with a focus in Black American Musicology in 2019, Alyssa has been committed to preserving, retelling, and continuing the legacies of great Black musicians through education and through  inclusion within her work. Whether it's performing her tribute shows on the road ("Motor City to Memphis: A Tribute to the Music of Motown & Stax", "Supreme Diva: A Tribute to Diana Ross", "Reigning Ladies: A Tribute to the Queens of Blues, Soul & Rock & Roll), or leading classes, workshops and seminars teaching vocal performance and technique to her voice students, Alyssa Harris intertwines the knowledge and discovery of the world of Black music history with a deep love for music that is undeniable

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Advisory Board

Roberta Lea

Advisor

Roberta Lea is an emerging singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist in the country music world. Her EP “Just A Taste” is available on her site. Roberta’s song "Sweet Baby Ray" won Song of the Year at the 2022 Veer Music Awards.

Dr. Kevin Johnson

Advisor

Dr. Kevin P. Johnson is an Associate Professor of Music and Chairman of the Music Department at Spelman College. As a tenured professor, Johnson teaches choral conducting, music theory, and music technology and has stood as the director of the world-renowned Spelman College Glee Club for nearly 20 years. He is also the founder of Black Music Scholar and an authority on Black music history.

Yvonne Harris Burnley

Advisor

Yvonne Harris Burnley is an entertainment lawyer and adjunct professor of entertainment law at Howard University. She is an attorney and manager for the estate of the music of her father, renowned jazz saxophonist, Eddie Harris.

Jordannah Elizabeth

Advisor

Jordannah Elizabeth is an American journalist, lecturer, music critic, author, and screenwriter. Jordannah's writing, lectures, and commentary have been featured as a part of Hearst Magazines, BBC 2, REELZ Channel, CBC syndicated radio, WYPR, Harvard University, Pratt Institute, Maryland Institute College of Art, and Baltimore Book Festival. Jordannah's writing has been featured in NPR Music, Village Voice, LA Weekly, MTV World, O Magazine, Cosmopolitan, DownBeat Magazine, and other publications. She has been a regular entertainment journalist for New York Amsterdam News since 2013 and is the founder of the literary organization, Publik / Private.

Support Us

We rely on the continued support from our champions to support and expand the Black Music Project. It is your generosity and charitable kindness that allows us to build everything you see here and to come! Please consider supporting us on Patreon if you'd like to support the continued growth of our project!

Supporter Levels

Tier 4

Aretha

Tier 3

Jimi

Tier 2

Billie

Tier 1

Prince