Author: Renegade Theater Group, Lagos, Nigeria
Credits: Steve Rowland

Steven S. Rowland

Steve Rowland has worked in public broadcasting for nearly 25 years. He is one of the most accomplished music documentarians in the United States, and has been called "The Ken Burns of radio". Rowland has produced over 50 hours of radio documentary work since 1987. All of his projects are based on extensive oral histories. His most recent work is the 11-hour documentary "Leonard Bernstein: An American Life" which is narrated by Susan Sarandon. It is based on over 100 exclusive interviews Rowland conducted with colleagues of Bernstein.

He also created the acclaimed 8-hour "Miles Davis Radio Project", hosted by Danny Glover, a 5 hour documentary on John Coltrane called "Tell Me How Long Trane's Been Gone" and individual documentaries on a number of American icons, including: "Carlos Santana: Music for Life", hosted by Edward James Olmos; "Patti LaBelle: Gospel into Soul", hosted by Whoopi Goldberg, "Frank Zappa: American Composer", hosted by Beverly D'Angelo, and "Hip-Hop 101: On the Road with the Roots", hosted by Chuck D. His work is in the permanent collections of The Library of Congress and the Museum of Television and Radio.

He has won nearly every award in radio including 2 Peabodys, a Pew Fellowship in the Arts, Prix Italia, Armstrong, Ohio State, Corporation for Public Broadcasting, and most recently a 2012 National Arts Journalism Award -- and many others. His work has been funded by The Corporation for Public Broadcasting, The National Endowment for the Arts, the National Endowment for the Humanities and several national foundations.

Rowland places particular emphasis on training others. He has been a regular instructor at Columbia University's Oral History Research Center, at Philadelphia's Scribe Video Center, at Philadelphia's University of the Arts, at St. Mary's College in Maryland, at Arcadia University and at CUNY's United Nations Oral History Research Project. He has lectured at Princeton, Syracuse University's Newhouse School, Columbia University, Arcadia University, University of Pennsylvania, and at dozens of radio stations nationwide. In addition, Rowland has been the Mentoring Coordinator for The Association of Independents in Radio for over 5 years. 

He has worked as a consultant to The Library of Congress, Music Division; the Columbia University Oral History Research Center; the Association of Oral Historians; Studer Editech Corporation; Roland USA, Pro Audio Division; HHB Professional Audio Products, The Philadelphia Folklore Project, the Atwater Kent Museum and many others.

Rowland holds an undergraduate degree in ethnomusicology and film production from Temple University and received an MBA from Columbia University in 2001.

Awards & Recognitions

  • Peabody Award
  • Peabody Award
  • Pew Fellowship in the Arts
  • National Entertainment Journalism Award, LA Press Club
  • CPB Award
  • Ohio State Award
  • Prix Italia Award
  • NY International Festival of Radio -World Cup
  • NY International Festival of Radio -Gold Medal

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