Rapper/actor Common will speak about “Lessons of Life: One Day It’ll All Make Sense” at 7:30 p.m. Jan. 24 in Clowes Memorial Hall, part of the 25th anniversary of Butler University’s Celebration of Diversity Distinguished Lecture Series.
The event is free, but tickets are required and available now at Clowes Hall box office or through Ticketmaster (fees apply).
Common, hailed as one of hip-hop’s most poetic and respected lyricists, delivers messages of self-respect, love and activism in music and speeches. He rose to prominence in hip-hop with albums that include “Can I Borrow a Dollar?”, “Resurrection,” “One Day It’ll All Make Sense,” “Like Water For Chocolate,” “Electric Circus,” “BE” and “Finding Forever.”
To produce both “BE” and “Finding Forever,” Common joined forces with fellow Chicago native and rap music mega-star Kanye West. This dynamic partnership resulted in four Grammy nominations and two MTV Video Music Awards nominations, including one for Best Hip-Hop Video.
In January 2007, Common made his acting debut co-starring opposite Jeremy Piven, Ben Affleck, Alicia Keys and Ryan Reynolds in “Smokin’ Aces” for Universal Pictures. Since then he’s co-starred opposite Denzel Washington in “American Gangster,” directed by Ridley Scott; in David Ayer’s “Street Kings,” starring Keanu Reeves and Forest Whitaker; in “Wanted,” opposite Angelina Jolie, James McAvoy and Morgan Freeman; and in “Terminator Salvation,” directed by McG and starring Christian Bale.
He is currently starring in the AMC TV series “Hell on Wheels.”
In 2007 he launched the Common Ground Foundation, dedicated to empowering urban youth to realize their full potential. In 2009, Common was able to motivate and empower collegiate minds across the country through speeches at California University of Pennsylvania, University of Memphis, Wright State University, University of Rochester and KIPP Charter Schools.
Common also offers a younger generation a better understanding of self-respect and love, utilizing the cultural relevance of hip-hop, in the children’s books he has written. The first one, “The MIRROR and ME,” teaches lessons of life, the human spirit and human nature. His follow-up book, “I Like You But I Love Me,” was nominated for an NAACP Image Award, and his third book, “M.E. (Mixed Emotions),” was released in 2008. His latest book is “One Day It’ll All Make Sense,” a memoir about life and growing up.