Samuel A. Floyd Jr. is Founder and Director Emeritus of the Center for Black Music Research, which he established in 1983 at Columbia College Chicago. While a member of the Fisk University faculty, he launched the Black Music Research Journal in 1980 and served as its editor until his retirement. During his tenure at the CBMR, he co-authored two books (with Marsha Reisser [Heizer]) including Black Music in the United States: An Annotated Bibliography (Kraus International, 1983) and Black Music Biography: An Annotated Bibliography (Kraus International, 1987). Floyd also edited Black Music in the Harlem Renaissance: A Collection of Essays (Greenwood Press, 1990), which received the Irving Lowens Book Award from the Society for American Music and the International Dictionary of Black Composers (Fitzroy-Dearborn, 1999), which was named one of the Twenty Best Reference Books for the year 1999 from the New York Public Library, and received an “Outstanding Reference Source” award from the American Library Association in 2000 in addition to a Choice Award as an Outstanding Academic Title.
In 1995, he published his monograph The Power of Black Music (OUP) and launched Lenox Avenue, a Journal of Interarts Inquiry, for which he served as editor.
His articles have appeared in a variety of publications including 19th-Century Music, American Music, Black Music Research Journal, Black Perspective in Music, Chronicle of Higher Education, and the College Music Symposium, to name a few.
He has received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Society for American Music and has been named an Honorary Member of the American Musicological Society.