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The National Public Housing Museum opens new exhibit at Expo 72 in Chicago

“The Sound, the Soul, the Syncopation” Opens Nov. 15 at Expo 72

Public housing has long been an unsung cradle of American music. From its communal spaces, Elvis found inspiration in Memphis, Barbra Streisand was stirred to make her way through song, and Lupe Fiasco found his identity on the streets of Chicago. In church choirs, piano lessons, street jams or marching bands, youth growing up in public housing have long found community –– and sometimes, even fame.

The story of this long unexamined aspect of public housing will now be on display through “The Sound, the Soul, the Syncopation” – an interactive exhibition being mounted by the National Public Housing Museum (NPHM) in partnership with Groovebug and the Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events (DCASE) in Chicago this November. Opening on November 15 th at Expo 72, 72 E. Randolph Street in Chicago, the exhibit is the first comprehensive look at the music and the artists that have emerged from the nation’s public housing experience, cultivating artists in nearly every genre including country, hip-hop, punk, jazz, gospel and pop.

“’The Sound, the Soul, the Syncopation’ tells the dual story of the role of music in the creation and development of community and the role of community in the creation of music,” said NPHM Executive Officer Keith L. Magee. “From Diana Ross and the Supremes to the Chicago Housing Authority Youth Orchestra, music has fostered growth and encouraged creativity. This exhibit will reveal that for many of today’s most popular artists, public housing was—and is—a place to call home.”

 NPHM’s partner, Groovebug, enhances the exhibit’s wide array of music, customizing their highly acclaimed iPad app to showcase the music, photos, videos and news of the 50 plus artists featured in the exhibit.

"We are delighted that our technology will help tell the story of the amazing collection of musicians that the National Public Housing Museum is featuring,” says Jeremiah Seraphine, CEO and co-founder of Groovebug. “Creativity and artistic expression don't manifest in a vacuum. The Groovebug platform is the perfect vehicle to help tell this story."