UNA Pressroom

Una's Fall Commencement To Feature American Music Critic And Screenwriter, Peter Guralnick

Nov. 09, 2016

Michelle Eubanks, UNA, at media@una.edu, 256.765.4392 or 256.606.2033

Bryan Rachal, University Communications

FLORENCE, Ala. - Peter Guralnick, American music critic, author and screenwriter, will be the featured commencement speaker at the University of North Alabama fall graduation ceremonies. UNA will host two commencement ceremonies Saturday, Dec. 17, at 10 a.m., and 2 p.m., in Flowers Hall. Guralnick will speak at both events.

Called a "national resource" by some critics, Guralnick's books include the prize-winning two-volume biography of Elvis Presley, Last Train to Memphis and Careless Love. Guralnick went on to write many books including his recent biography of Sam Phillips, Sam Phillips: The Man Who Invented Rock 'n' Roll, which was published November 2015 and named one of the Best Books of the Year by The New York Times.

Guralnick has won a Grammy for his liner notes for Sam Cooke Live at the Harlem Square Club, he wrote and co-produced the documentary Sam Phillips: The Man Who Invented Rock 'n' Roll, and he wrote the scripts for the Grammy-winning documentary Sam Cooke/Legend and for Martin Scorsese's blues documentary Feel Like Going Home. Guralnick taught Creative Writing at Vanderbilt University from 2005 to 2016, and is a recent inductee in the Blues Hall of Fame.

In addition to remarks by Guralnick, music icon Rick Hall will be the recipient of an honorary doctorate degree from UNA at the commencement ceremonies. Hall is a legendary music producer known for founding FAME studios; he's also credited as the founder of the modern day "Muscle Shoals Sound."

A full bio and photos of Peter Guralnick can be found here: http://www.una.edu/university-communications/press/peter-guralnick----december-2017-commencement-speaker.html


The University of North Alabama is an accredited, comprehensive regional state university offering undergraduate and graduate degree programs through the colleges of Arts and Sciences, Business, Education and Human Sciences, and the Anderson College of Nursing. Occupying a 130-acre campus in a residential section of Florence, Alabama, UNA is located within a four-city area that also includes Tuscumbia, Sheffield and Muscle Shoals. UNA also operates a renowned collegiate athletic program in NCAA Division II's Gulf South Conference. The University of North Alabama is an equal opportunity institution and does not discriminate in the admission policy on the basis of race, color, sex, religion, disability, age or national origin.