Jeff Chang is more than your average music scholar. Tip of the iceberg details? The Berkeley author helped start the SoleSides label -- which became Quannum Projects; penned a number of books on hip-hop culture; interviewed Barack Obama for the cover of Vibe,; and has gotten his byline in New York Times, Foreign Policy, The Nation, Huffington Post and Mother Jones, among other publications.
Add to that list a new honor: Chang was awarded a $50,000 USA Fellowship grant for artistic excellence. He was one of four local arts types to get the check. The full list includes choreographer Joe Goode and filmmakers Lourdes Portillo and Jay Rosenblatt. Nice to see that in this crap economy some folks doing good work are getting a little extra padding in their bank accounts. --Jennifer Maerz