Common To Keynote Chicago Music Summit

Grammy-winning hip-hop artist Common will be the keynote speaker at the inaugural Chicago Music Summit.

In promoting Friday’s gathering at Chicago’s Cultural Center, Mayor Rahm Emanuel praised the rapper and actor, saying that other musicians will be able to learn from the Chicago native.

Common, who has written a memoir as well as children’s books, has been involved in a number of efforts to help young people in his hometown. In 2000, he launched his own Common Ground Foundation, which is aimed at exposing disadvantaged young people to the creative arts.

Photo: James P. Hendershot
Summer Spirit Festival, Merriweather Post Pavilion, Columbia, Md.

Common has spoken out about violence in several Chicago neighborhoods, and has talked about what he and other rap artists can do to make those neighborhoods safer.