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TSU graduate student makes connections at the 2024 Grammy Awards

Written by on April 27, 2024

Texas Southern University graduate student Koran “KC” Cooper took center stage at the 2024 Grammy Awards, capturing news headlining footage and leaving a mark on the music industry and peers he encountered. 

Despite facing initial adversities, including losing his laptop upon arrival in California, Cooper’s resilience and determination propelled him towards unforgettable experiences and meaningful encounters with industry titans.

Koran “KC” Cooper holding a conversation at the BMAC x Live Nation Economic Summit during Grammy week in Hollywood, CA with the Co-Founder of MTV & President of iHeart Media John Sykes.

The most poignant moment for Cooper came unexpectedly, as he scrolled through Instagram and stumbled upon a clip of Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Inductee Flava Flav singing “Can You Stand the Rain” at the Black Music Action Coalition Dinner. Collaborating with Mike Melendy’s media team, Cooper’s footage was featured on Fox 11 News in Los Angeles, a testament to his impactful contributions behind the scenes.

Reflecting on the atmosphere of the event, Cooper described the palpable energy and camaraderie among attendees, especially within the Black Music Action Coalition. The Grammys served as a catalyst for collaboration and networking, fostering genuine friendships and professional growth.

Terry Lewis, Prophet, Shawn Holiday, Jimmy Jam on the black carpet at the BMAC Grammy Dinner in Hollywood, CA. 

Among the actual Grammy ceremony’s highlights in his opinion was Jay-Z’s impassioned speech about Beyoncé’s absence from the Album of the Year accolade, sparking conversations about representation and recognition within the industry.

Something that the Black Music Action Coalition advocates for day in and out. He felt like this all aligned with experience, because of the students of this program were who his cohorts consisted of & his young career in the entertainment industry and systemic barriers he’s already had to hurdle in order to be recognized.

Attending the Grammys proved transformative for Cooper, offering firsthand insights into the music industry’s dynamics and cultural significance. From interacting with notable artists like 2024 Grammy award winner Victoria Monet and hip-hop mogul Jermaine Dupree to engaging with legendary industry veterans such as Terry Lewis and Jimmy Jam, Cooper gained invaluable wisdom and inspiration for his own journey.

 Koran “KC” Cooper posing with Rock & Roll Hall of Fame inductee Flava Flav at the BMAC x Live Nation Economic Summit during Grammy Week in Hollywood, CA.

In conversations with industry luminaries like Prophet (Founder of BMAC), Parlay (President of 50/50 Music Group), and his uncle Dorsey Dixon (Owner of Meraki Sauce Factory), Cooper found validation for his aspirations and a renewed sense of purpose.

The Grammys underscored the importance of perseverance and community in navigating the complexities of the music business, reinforcing Cooper’s commitment to his craft and his dreams.

As he continues his journey as a media entrepreneur and advocate for diversity and inclusion, Cooper’s experience at the 2024 Grammy Awards serves as a testament to the power of resilience, authenticity, and unwavering determination in achieving one’s aspirations.

Koran “KC” Cooper Interview Transcript

What was the most memorable moment for you at the Grammys this year, and why?

“The most memorable moment was when I was randomly driving with my uncle after an event, and I opened Instagram to see I was tagged in a story by the leader of the production team I was working with. Once I pulled up the story, the first part I saw was a clip of Flava Flav singing “Can You Stand the Rain” at the Black Music Action Coalition Dinner that I recorded in collaboration with Mike Melendy’s media team featured on the Fox 11 News in LA. I instantly was filled with happiness, it was a moment in the car where me and my uncle just paused and was like, “Man God is good.”

Can you describe the atmosphere and energy surrounding the event, particularly in comparison to previous years?

“The atmosphere this year was electric, as soon as you landed in Los Angeles you felt the energy, you saw the smiles, you hear the laughter & intellectual conversations you yearn to have. It felt like everyone there was there to help advance one another’s career. I witnessed a lot of collaborations spring to life in a span of a week from being out there. I went to the Grammys with the non-profit organization BMAC (Black Music Action Coalition), and it is very family oriented cohorts of professionals in the industry.

Within that organization I gained friendships that I’ll more than likely have for life, and I’m grateful that I was able to experience the Grammy’s with that group of people. They made the atmosphere welcoming and a wonderful space for creatives & industry professionals.”

Were there any unexpected or surprising highlights during the ceremony that stood out to you?

“When Jay-Z spoke about how Beyoncé hasn’t won album of the year ever, everyone I was around instantly glued their eyes to him talking. He stirred the industry up with those remarks, it reminded me of when Kanye came up when Taylor Swift won and said Beyoncé should have won, in a more polite manner. Other than that, we were anticipating.”

How do you think attending the Grammys has impacted your perspective on the music industry and its cultural significance?

“The Grammys impacted my perspective massively, I saw what the industry was like firsthand in the largest economy in the nation. The level & quality of the events were different, from the ambiance to the food it was a different environment. I learned a lot about how to do business in the industry and a lot of the things I learned at Texas Southern was confirmed as well, so it really motivated me to keep going.”

Did you have the opportunity to interact with any notable artists or industry professionals, and if so, what insights or experiences did you gain from those interactions?

“Yes, I did, Prophet the Founder of BMAC, Victoria Monet, Lil Mosey, Terry Lewis and Jimmy Jam, Flavor Flav, Babyface, Tank, John Sykes & more. Aside from making the news, I had really genuine conversations with a lot of the people I just named that gave me direction and motivation. Hearing stories from Prophet, Parlay (President of 50/50 record label), and my uncle Dorsey Dixon (Meraki Sauce Factory owner), were more fulfilling than any amount of money could make you feel, because they’re black men who are in places I aspire to be one day and they started with the same adversities that I have eventually overcoming them.”