The Recording Academy®'s Black Music Collective, in partnership with GRAMMY U®, hosted the HBCU Love Tour in Atlanta, GA on October 9 and 10. The program aims to empower students at HBCUs to pursue a career in music and educate prospective music industry professionals on career paths and emerging opportunities.
The main program kicked off on Monday, October 10 with a performance by Clark Atlanta University student Nia Simone, the winner of the HBCU Love Tour Student Showcase hosted by Manni Supreme and DJ Ricovelli on October 9. Simone received a cash prize presented by Rico Love.
The Recording Academy’s Board of Trustees Chair Tammy Hurt welcomed all attendees and introduced Recording Academy Vice President of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Ryan Butler, who spoke about the HBCU Love Tour’s mission and its commitment to providing opportunities for the next generation of Black music creators and professionals to thrive. The visionary behind the program, Rico Love, proceeded with the first panel of the night featuring GRAMMY® nominated artists J.I.D and Baby Tate, where they talked about their experiences in the music industry, and demystifying the GRAMMY Awards process.
GRAMMY U Director Jessie Allen kept the evening going with the commencement of the GRAMMY U Masterclass with rising artist Armani White, moderated by singer, actress, dancer and producer Kat Graham, discussing White’s journey and how social media has changed the trajectory of his career. White’s viral TikTok hit “Billie Eilish” debuted at No. 99 on Billboard Hot 100, with 4.4 million U.S. streams and 4.1 million radio airplay audience impressions.
Following the GRAMMY U Masterclass, Allen spoke to the student audience about GRAMMY U’s mission and how they can get involved on their campuses. Armani White concluded the evening with an intimate performance of “Billie Eilish” surrounded by students who sang along to the hit song.
Photo by: Terence Rushin/Gety Images