Melvin Van Peebles

Melvin Van Peebles’ reputation as a pioneering African American filmmaker may obscure the fact that he was also one of the forefathers of rap music. Van Peebles is a brilliantly creative individual who draws from many life experiences. He can list Air Force bombardier as well as cable car driver, postman, portrait painter and journalist. He has also lived in many locations across the U.S., Mexico and France. Van Peebles has received a lot of attention over the years because of his films, including The Story of a Three Day Pass (1968), The Watermelon Man (70), and Sweet Sweetback’s Baadassss Song (1971). But he also revolutionized black musicality with many albums that combined rapping and out-there jazz and funk. After Van Peebles had completed The Story of a Three Day Pass’s direction, he signed a recording deal with A.

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