Dan Charnas

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Charnas on a panel at the 2010 Brooklyn Book Festival with Kristin Hersh.

Daniel Louis Charnas[1] (born August 30, 1967)[2] is an American author, radio host and record company executive. He is considered to have played a role in the creation of hip-hop journalism.

A native of New York City, Charnas graduated with honors from Boston University in 1989 with a bachelor's degree in communications.[3][4] In 2007, Charnas earned a master's degree from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism.[1][3] His master's thesis was titled Shocked: Birthright Unplugged challenges Birthright Israel in an epic battle for the hearts and minds of American Jews.[5]

As a radio personality, Charnas hosted a segment on KPWR on the first hip-hop show in Los Angeles.[6] As a journalist he was a writer for the hip-hop magazine The Source.[7] He became a talent scout for Profile Records and later ran the rap division of American Recordings in a joint venture with Warner Bros. Records.[6][7]

In 2010 he wrote the book The Big Payback about the history of the hip-hop business.[6][7]

Charnas is an associate professor at the Tisch School of the Arts at New York University and has been a thesis advisor at the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism.[8][9]


  1. ^ a b "GRADUATION: 2007 Award Winners". The Daily Plan-it / Dean of Students Blog, Columbia J-school. Columbia University School of Journalism. Archived from the original on October 16, 2007. Retrieved April 30, 2017.
  2. ^ https://twitter.com/dancharnas/status/108638130902532097
  3. ^ a b "About Dan Charnas". DanCharnas.com. Retrieved April 30, 2017.
  4. ^ Faraone, Chris (October 24, 2012). "In the Early Days of Rap Music, One COM Student Fanned a Cultural Spark that Caught Fire Campus-wide". Boston University. Retrieved April 30, 2017.
  5. ^ "Journalism Library: 2007 Master's Projects". Columbia University Library. Retrieved April 30, 2017.
  6. ^ a b c Global Grind staff (January 5, 2011). "Dan Charnas On The Biggest Deals In Hip-Hop History, & Why Drake Could've Done Better". Global Grind.
  7. ^ a b c Aaron Leitko (January 16, 2011). "The brains behind the bling-bling". Washington Post.
  8. ^ https://tisch.nyu.edu/about/directory/clive-davis-institute/1329313918
  9. ^ http://library.columbia.edu/locations/journalism/masters/2013-masters-s-projects.html