WGBO Paul Robeson Documentary

Press Release

54 Park Place
Newark, NJ 07102

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE -- CONTACT: Amy Reed, 973-624-8880, ext. 268 March 20, 1998


Robeson Biographer and Longtime Friend Lloyd Brown Featured on Worldwide Broadcast

NY/NJ Metro area -- To commemorate the 100th anniversary of Paul Robeson's birth, WBGO 88.3 FM presents Paul Robeson: A Tribute to My Friend on Thursday, April 9, 6:00-7:00pm. The documentary gives a personal account of the music career of this noted singer, stage and screen actor, scholar, athlete and controversial political activist. WBGO will cybercast the program to a worldwide Internet audience on April 9 at www.wbgo.org and will distribute the program to other public radio stations throughout the country.

Paul Robeson: A Tribute to my Friend, produced by WBGO in cooperation with North Star Communications and the New Jersey Historical Commission, explores the music career of this legendary African American figure. Lloyd Brown, a biographer, longtime friend and colleague of Robeson, reflects on his 30-year friendship with Robeson, and discusses Robeson's musical achievements and the impact of his music on worldwide social and political issues of the day.

"My goal is to take listeners on an audio journey and let them hear how Paul Robeson used music to realize his personal and political vision," said producer Donna Limerick of North Star Communications.

A New Jersey native, Robeson is highly regarded for his achievements in sports, academia and the arts. He became one of America's most controversial figures during the Cold War. Hailed by many as a forerunner of the Civil Rights Movement, he was denounced by others and seen by the U.S. government as a threat to the nation's security at home and abroad.

Brown met Robeson in 1946 and became a writer in 1950 for Freedom, a Harlem newspaper Robeson founded. He was a collaborator for Robeson's column in that paper and also for Robeson's 1958 book Here I Stand. He authored The Young Paul Robeson, a critically acclaimed biography of Robeson, published last year.

Funding for this program was provided by the Corporation of Public Broadcasting, The Hite Foundation, The New Jersey Council for the Humanities and WBGO.

WBGO 88.3 FM serves the metropolitan area with mainstream jazz, blues and public affairs programming. Licensed to Newark Public Radio, the award- winning, non-commercial station was founded in 1979. WBGO is supported by over 12,000 members and enjoys almost 350,000 listeners each week. WBGO also cybercasts its broadcast at www.wbgo.org.