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"Toure" redirects here. For the surname and people with the surname, see Touré (surname).
Touré in 2006
Born Touré Neblett
(1971-03-20) March 20, 1971 (age 43)
Boston, Massachusetts[1]
Occupation TV host, novelist, journalist, cultural critic
Language English
Nationality American

Touré (born Touré Neblett; March 20, 1971) is an American writer, music journalist, cultural critic, and television personality. He is the host of Fuse's Hiphop Shop and On the Record and co-host of The Cycle on MSNBC. He was also a contributor to MSNBC's The Dylan Ratigan Show and serves on the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Nominating Committee.[2] He teaches a course on the history of hip hop at the Clive Davis Institute of Recorded Music, part of the Tisch School of the Arts in New York.[3]

Touré is the author of several books, including The Portable Promised Land (2003), Soul City (2004), Who's Afraid of Post-Blackness? What It Means To Be Black Now (2011), and I Would Die 4 U: Why Prince Became an Icon (2013).

Early life[edit]

Touré was born Touré Neblett in Boston on March 20, 1971.[1][4][5] He attended Milton Academy.[6]


Writing career[edit]

While a student at Emory University, Touré founded the school's black student newspaper, The Fire This Time,[7] which has been criticized for being militantly anti-white.[8][9] The Daily Caller took issue with the fact that the publication only solicited donations from blacks, and that its articles praised noted anti-Semites, black supremacists, and conspiracy theorists such as H. Rap Brown and Frances Cress Welsing, whom Touré invited to Emory's campus. The Caller also criticized Touré's use of a hoaxed hate crime at Emory as a rationale for a list of demands against the university, even after the crime's ostensible target, Sabrina Collins, admitted that her accusations were a hoax of her creation. Touré defended The Fire This Time as "an important black voice on campus" and "a form of community building."[8][9]

Touré began his career as a music journalist. He has contributed essays and articles to Rolling Stone,[2][10][11][12] Essence,.[13] The New Yorker,[14] The New York Times,[15] Playboy,[16] Time,[17] The Village Voice,[18] Vibe, and Ebony.[19]

His Rolling Stone article about Dale Earnhardt Jr., "Kurt is My Co-Pilot", was included in The Best American Sports Writing 2001.[12][20]

Touré has written five books, including Who's Afraid of Post-Blackness?, a collection of interviews, in which black people discuss what the benefits of the Civil Rights movement mean to them,[5][21][22] and I Would Die 4 U: Why Prince Became an Icon, a Prince biography.[5][23]


Touré interviewing DJ Spooky at the 2009 Brooklyn Book Festival.

Touré has appeared on television as a pop culture correspondent for CNN, MSNBC, Black Entertainment Television and other networks.[2] He hosted the series Community Surface on Tennis Channel,[24] and was one of the journalists interviewed for biographical insight into the life of rapper Eminem on the A&E Biography episode devoted to that musician.[25] He currently hosts The Cycle on MSNBC with political strategist Krystal Ball, moderate Republican Abby Huntsman, and The Nation correspondent Ari Melber.[26]

On March 29, 2012, Touré criticized Piers Morgan's interview of Robert Zimmerman regarding his brother George's shooting of Trayvon Martin on Morgan's CNN talk show, Piers Morgan Tonight. Appearing on next day's episode of Piers Morgan Tonight the two continued their hostilities. The two continued to feud on Twitter after the show's taping.[27][28][29] On August 16, 2012, on The Cycle, Touré caused a controversy by stating that by calling President Barack Obama "angry," Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney was engaging in the "niggerization" of the president. He apologized for using the word the next day.[30]

On May 23, 2014, Touré suggested that Jews survived the Holocaust thanks to "the power of whiteness" when responding to a Twitter user's post that read, "My family survived a concentration camp, came to the US w/ nothing, LEGALLY, and made it work." Touré was quickly condemned by the Simon Wiesenthal Center, a Jewish organization dedicated to combating anti-Semitism, whose spokesperson, Efraim Zuroff, accused Touré of anti-Semitism and reverse racism.[31] Touré apologized on May 27, saying, "Late last week, I foolishly got involved in a twitter exchange regarding an article about reparations. It was a dumb idea by me to debate serious and nuanced topics in 140 characters or less. In an attempt to comment on racism in post World War II America, I used a shorthand that was insensitive and wrong. I am very sorry and will make sure this doesn't happen again."[32]

Personal life[edit]

On March 19, 2005, Touré married Rita Nakouzi on a beach in Miami, with Rev. Run from Run-DMC as the officiant and Nelson George as the best man. Touré and his wife live in the Fort Greene neighborhood of Brooklyn, New York.[33] They have a son named Hendrix and a daughter named Fairuz.[34]



  1. ^ a b Contemporary Authors Online, Thomson Gale, 2006, s.v. "Toure." "Personal Information: Born March 20, 1971, in Boston, MA; married Rita Nakouzi, March 19, 2005."
  2. ^ a b c Menz, Wonders, Petey E., Jeannie Sui (March 27, 2012). "Critic Touré Reveals Prince's Religious Roots". The Harvard Crimson. 
  3. ^ Toure, Faculty directory, Clive Davis Institute of Recorded Music. Retrieved April 12, 2013.
  4. ^ "Target Entertainment launches over 100 hours of new programming at MIPTV". Target Entertainment Group. March 21, 2011. Quote: "...renowned music journalist Touré Neblett talks with some of the most provocative players in music today...."
  5. ^ a b c Lewis, Miles Marshall (August 25, 2011). "It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Black". Huffington Post. Quote: "Touré Neblett is the cultural critic folks love to hate."
  6. ^ "Touré BIOGRAPHY: Writer, Journalist, Critic and Television Host". Big City Pictures. February 1, 2008.
  7. ^ Loftus, Mary J. (Autumn 2009). "News makers". Emory Magazine. Retrieved 25 April 2012. 
  8. ^ a b Johnson, Charles C.; Girdusky, Ryan (April 9, 2013). "MSNBC’s Touré founded militant anti-white student paper". The Daily Caller. 
  9. ^ a b Ritz, Eric (April 9, 2013). "Report: MSNBC Host Toure Founded a 'Militant Anti-White Student Newspaper'". Yahoo! News.
  10. ^ Touré (2006). "The Book of Jay". Rolling Stone online. Archived from the original on 2006. 
  11. ^ "Adele Opens Up About Her Inspirations, Looks and Stage Fright in New Rolling Stone Cover Story". Rolling Stone. April 13, 2011. Retrieved July 5, 2012. 
  12. ^ a b Mattei, Al. "Book Review: Visionary Choice Mark 2001 Edition". Retrieved May 7, 2012. 
  13. ^ Lewis, Miles Marshall (August 25, 2011). "It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Black". The Huffington Post.
  14. ^ Touré (March 23, 2014). "Black and White on Martha's Vineyard". New York magazine.
  15. ^ Touré (August 5, 2011). "Preconceptions". The New York Times.
  16. ^ Touré (April 2014). "How the Central Park Five Still Haunt America". Playboy. pp 54-58, 126-127
  17. ^ Touré (April 11, 2013). "Viewpoint: You Can't Be An 'Accidental' Racist". Time.
  18. ^ Touré (January 24, 2006}. "Platinum Reputation". The Village Voice.
  19. ^ "Culture Critic Touré to Discuss 'Post-Blackness,' Dec. 1". Duke University. November 28, 2011.
  20. ^ "Best American Sports Writing Index 1991-2012". Retrieved May 7, 2012. 
  21. ^ Patterson, Orlando (September 22, 2011). "The Post-Black Condition". The New York Times.
  22. ^ "Touré". Time. Retrieved August 29, 2014.
  23. ^ Pierre, Brittny (March 7, 2013. "Touré Tackles Prince in New Book, Finds Jesus, Discovers They're One in the Same ". The Village Voice.
  24. ^ "Community Surface". Tennis Channel. Retrieved April 12, 2013.
  25. ^ Biography: Eminem. A&E
  26. ^ Lauerman, Kerry (June 21, 2012). "Kornacki an MSNBC host, too". Salon Magazine. Salon Media Group. Retrieved June 22, 2012. 
  27. ^ Christopher, Tommy (March 30, 2012). "Update: Piers Morgan Books MSNBC's Touré In Real Time To Settle Twitter Feud". Mediaite.
  28. ^ Christopher, Tommy (March 30, 2012). "Piers Morgan And Touré Finish Their Twitter Feud On CNN’s Air". Mediaite.
  29. ^ Stableford, Dylan (Apr 1, 2012). "Toure apologizes for Piers Morgan meltdown". Yahoo! News.
  30. ^ Wemple, Erik (17 Aug 2012). "MSNBC's Touré apologizes for ‘niggerization’ remark". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2012-09-21. 
  31. ^ Chasmar, Jessica (May 27, 2014). "MSNBC’s Touré says ‘power of whiteness’ benefited Holocaust survivors". The Washington Times.
  32. ^ Ross, L.A. (May 27, 2014). "MSNBC Host Apologizes for ‘Power of Whiteness’ Tweet About Holocaust". MSNBC.
  33. ^ Navas, Judy Cantor. "Rita Nakouzi and Touré". The New York Times. March 27, 2005
  34. ^ Copage, Eric V. (May 22, 2009). "Rita Nakouzi and Touré". The New York Times.

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