Contents and Arrangement

"Cosby and the Music" Manuscript Draft, circa mid 1980s

1 folder

Collection Overview

Collection Description & Creator Information

Scope and Contents

Consists of a manuscript draft of "Cosby & the Music," which was derived from a conversation between Baraka and Bill Cosby (1937- ) that took place between sets at Caesar's Palace, where Cosby was performing. The piece first appeared in the program for the Playboy Jazz Festival, an annual event which Cosby hosted for 30 years. This draft is entirely in Baraka's hand with edits, additions, and deletions on nearly every page. There is a handwritten note that reads: "Commissioned by Cosby – ran in Playboy Jazz Festival Program 86." The work was later collected in the 2009 book, Diggin: The Afro-American Should of American Classical Music.


The arrangement of how materials came to the Library has been maintained. Materials are arranged in the order in which they were accessioned.

Collection History


Purchased from Glenn Horowitz, Bookseller, in 2021 (AM 2022-093).


No materials were removed from the collection during 2021-2022 processing beyond routine appraisal practices.

Processing Information

This item was processed and described by Kelly Bolding in January 2022, incorporating some description provided by the dealer.

Access & Use

Conditions Governing Access

The collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Single copies may be made for research purposes. To cite or publish quotations that fall within Fair Use, as defined under U. S. Copyright Law, no permission is required. For instances beyond Fair Use, it is the responsibility of the researcher to determine whether any permissions related to copyright, privacy, publicity, or any other rights are necessary for their intended use of the Library's materials, and to obtain all required permissions from any existing rights holders, if they have not already done so. Princeton University Library's Special Collections does not charge any permission or use fees for the publication of images of materials from our collections, nor does it require researchers to obtain its permission for said use. The department does request that its collections be properly cited and images credited. More detailed information can be found on the Copyright, Credit and Citations Guidelines page on our website. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us through the Ask Us! form.

Physical Characteristics and Technical Requirements

For preservation reasons, original analog and digital media may not be read or played back in the reading room. Users may visually inspect physical media but may not remove it from its enclosure. All analog audiovisual media must be digitized to preservation-quality standards prior to use. Audiovisual digitization requests are processed by an approved third-party vendor. Please note, the transfer time required can be as little as several weeks to as long as several months and there may be financial costs associated with the process. Requests should be directed through the Ask Us Form.

Credit this material:

"Cosby and the Music" Manuscript Draft; Princeton University Library Collection of Amiri Baraka Materials, C1668, Manuscripts Division, Department of Special Collections, Princeton University Library

Firestone Library
One Washington Road
Princeton, NJ 08544, USA
(609) 258-3184
Storage Note:
  • Firestone Library (mss): Box B-001757

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