Gluten-free brand Genius has appointed Sir Bill Gammell as a new non-executive chairman to its board.The chairman of Cairn Energy joins the manufacturer of gluten-free products succeeding corporate financier Edward Murray, who will remain a non-executive director alongside former Marks and Spencer senior group executive Ernie Finch. Gammell, who himself is gluten-intolerant, invested in Genius in 2009 after being given a loaf of bread made by the company’s founder Lucinda Bruce-Gardyne. He said: “At the time, Lucinda was looking for financial backing to commercialise her gluten-free bread. As a long-suffering coeliac, I was over the moon to be able to tuck into tasty bread once again and it was an easy decision to invest in Lucinda’s vision.“Since then, Lucinda and her team have grown Genius into a rapidly expanding international food group and I am delighted to be able to join the board at this exciting time in the company’s development.”Roz Cuschieri, chief executive of Genius, said: “Sir Bill brings a wealth of international experience to Genius and we are incredibly fortunate to have him on board as we strive to create a truly global food business. I should also like to thank Janice Gammell for her tireless efforts in developing this business since the very early days of the company.”Janice Gammell, director of Figured Ltd, will step down from the Genius board after serving on it for three years.Genius, whose gluten-free products are stocked in UK supermarket chains and independent high street grocers, recently announced a deal with Carrefour to supply to its Spanish stores. The firm also broke into North America last year through a manufacturing partnership with US food group Glutino.Last year Genius recorded retail sales of over £23m – less than three years since the company was founded.
Legendary rapper, producer, and DJ Q-Tip will add a new item to his long list of professional endeavors: college professor. The founding A Tribe Called Quest MC/producer has announced that he will teach a new course examining the relationship between jazz and hip-hop at the Clive Davis Institute of Recorded Music in the Tisch School of the Arts at New York University this coming fall semester.The class will explore the boundary-breaking artists of the 1970s, 80s, and 90s and beyond who fused musical genres and prototyped new music techniques including The Last Poets, Stetsasonic, A Tribe Called Quest, Public Enemy, The Roots, Lauryn Hill, and Kendrick Lamar.According to a statement from the school:This course is among the first in the world to explore the underappreciated connections between jazz and hip-hop and combines historical and social perspectives with the opportunity to produce original music at the nexus of the two genres.Jazz emerged in the 1920s, prioritizing traditional musicianship, and hip-hop—born in the 1970s— favors non-traditional approaches and instrumentation, but the two styles continue to grow and influence each other. As one of the most successful figures in hip-hop, Q-Tip brings to NYU visionary ideas about the intersections and parallel developments of these musical styles.Q-Tip will conduct the course in tandem with the acclaimed journalist, writer, and producer Ashley Kahn. The course curriculum will be taught over seven class sessions, with each class split into two parts. The first part of each period will feature focused readings and listening assignments that “investigate the social, cultural, musical, and business aspects of the relationships between jazz and hip-hop.” The second portion of each lesson will focus on “musicianship, performance, composition, and production with students completing in-class and out-of-class assignments under Q-Tip’s mentorship, investigating compositional and studio choices at the nexus of hip hop and jazz, and working collaboratively to create, refine, and produce their own original musical works.”“I couldn’t be more excited to share with the students what I know and I look forward to them also teaching me. Teaching is an exchange of sharing and receiving for all involved,” says Q-Tip.“We’re thrilled to have Q-Tip join the faculty of The Clive Davis Institute of Recorded Music,” says Jason King, associate professor and director of Writing, History & Emergent Media Studies at the Clive Davis Institute. “In searching for instructors to teach in our program, our aim is to always bring top-flight working professionals to the classroom who have made a major impact in their fields. That’s why we’re so excited to welcome Q-Tip, since he’s a peerless icon who redefined hip-hop for generations to come and brought jazz to the genre, especially through his contribution with A Tribe Called Quest. He also has a natural instinct for teaching and cultivating excellence in students in terms of their focus on craft and expressive style. It’s going to be transformative to have him on board.”[via NYU]