Thanks to his training in classical piano and musical theater, Jason King has lived a life deeply rooted in music. Today it serves him well as the new Dean of the Thornton School of Music at the University of Southern California. He’s been described as a multitalented music scholar, journalist, author, musician, performer, songwriter, as well as a radio and video host. Before accepting the position at USC, King worked as a professor at The Clive Davis Institute of Recorded Music at New York University, where he taught classes for more than two decades on popular music history and geography, identity and cultural politics. He can be seen in the documentary, Little Richard: I Am Everything, which tells the story of famed Black gay rock-n-roll performer Little Richard. He also served as musical director for the brilliant "You Are My Friend: A Concert Tribute to Sylvester" at Lincoln Center in New York City. When asked about his new post at USC by the university newspaper, King said, “This is really exciting to me, the opportunity to step into something that is already exceptional and take it to greater and more exceptional heights.” —K.M.