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Alice Randall

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Information about Alice Randall

Profile image of Alice Randall

Profession

Category:
ArtMakers
EntertainmentMakers
MusicMakers
Occupation(s):
Fiction Writer
Screenwriter
Lyricist

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Black, White
Favorite Food:
Cornbread Madeleines
Favorite Time of Year:
Spring
Favorite Vacation Spot:
None
Favorite Quote:
Do The Hard Right Thing.

Birthplace

Born:
5/4/1959
Birth Location:
Detroit, Michigan

Profession

Category:
ArtMakers
EntertainmentMakers
MusicMakers
Occupation(s):
Fiction Writer
Screenwriter
Lyricist

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Black, White
Favorite Food:
Cornbread Madeleines
Favorite Time of Year:
Spring
Favorite Vacation Spot:
None
Favorite Quote:
Do The Hard Right Thing.

Birthplace

Born:
5/4/1959
Birth Location:
Detroit
See how Alice Randall is related to other HistoryMakers

Biography

Fiction writer, lyricist, and screenwriter Alice Randall was born to Mari-Alice and George Randall on May 4, 1959 in Detroit, Michigan. She spent her early years in Detroit where she attended St. Phillips Lutheran School and Greenfield Peace Lutheran School. Moving with her mother to Washington, D.C., she was enrolled at Amidon Elementary School and graduated from Georgetown Day School. Briefly traveling to Great Britain to enroll in the Institute of Archaeology at the University of London, she returned to enter Harvard University in the fall of 1977.

At Harvard, she was influenced by Hubert Matos, Harry Levin and Nathan Irving Huggins and was a member of the International Relations Council. Randall earned honors and her B.A. degree in English and American literature in 1981. In the early 1980s, Randall worked as a journalist and as a writer for Wolftrap Performing Arts Center in Washington, D.C. Cultivating a taste for country music in 1981, Randall decided to move to Nashville in 1983 to become a country music song-writer. Having her first country hits in 1983 and 1984, Randall wrote "Girls Ride Horses Too" in 1987 and garnered a number one hit with "XXX's and OOO's: An American Girl" recorded by Trisha Yearwood in 1993. Writing over 200 country songs with thirty recorded, Randall is the first African American woman to have a number one country hit.

Randall's first novel, “The Wind Done Gone” is a reinterpretation and parody of “Gone with the Wind.” The title critiques “Gone with the Wind” from the viewpoint of Scarlett O'Hara's half-sister Cynara, a mulatto slave on Scarlett's plantation. The estate of Margaret Mitchell sued Randall and her publishing company, Houghton Mifflin, on the grounds that “The Wind Done Gone” was too similar to “Gone with the Wind,” thus infringing its copyright. The lawsuit was eventually settled, allowing “The Wind Done Gone” to be published. The novel became a New York Times bestseller. Randall's second novel, “Pushkin and the Queen of Spades,” was named as one of the Washington Post's "Best Fiction of 2004."

As a screenwriter, Randall wrote a television movie for CBS based on her song XXX's and OOO's: An American Girl in 1994, and contributed to screenplay adaptations of “Their Eyes Were Watching God,” “Brer Rabbit” and “Parting the Waters.” In the 1990s, she and fellow songwriter, J. C. Crowley, created a film and television development company called Black and White Pictures. Randall and friend, Mimi Oka, now operate a film and television development company in Nashville called “She Writes Movies, Inc.” She is also a member of the Harvard-Radcliffe Club of Middle Tennessee. Randall has recently published the book “Rebel Yell” in September, 2009. Randall is married to attorney, David Steele Ewing and has a daughter, Caroline Randall Williams.

Alice Randall was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on March 17, 2007.

See how Alice Randall is related to other HistoryMakers
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  • Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Alice Randall's interview
  • Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Alice Randall lists her favorites
  • Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Alice Randall describes her mother's family background
  • Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Alice Randall talks about her mother's foster family
  • Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Alice Randall describes her mother's career
  • Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Alice Randall describes her father's family background
  • Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Alice Randall talks about her father's descent from Confederate General Edmund Pettus
  • Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Alice Randall describes her father's relationship with his white relatives
  • Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Alice Randall remembers her paternal grandfather
  • Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Alice Randall describes her father's young adulthood
  • Tape: 1 Story: 11 - Alice Randall talks about her relationship with her mother
  • Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Alice Randall describes how her parents met and married
  • Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Alice Randall talks about her relationship with her father
  • Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Alice Randall describes her parents' personalities
  • Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Alice Randall remembers the African American community in Detroit, Michigan
  • Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Alice Randall recalls her father's childhood friend
  • Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Alice Randall recalls lessons from her father, pt. 1
  • Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Alice Randall recalls lessons from her father, pt. 2
  • Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Alice Randall describes her earliest childhood memories
  • Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Alice Randall describes the sights, sounds and smells of her childhood
  • Tape: 2 Story: 10 - Alice Randall recalls integrating The Roeper School in Detroit, Michigan
  • Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Alice Randall remembers her parents' divorce
  • Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Alice Randall talks about moving with her mother to Washington, D.C.
  • Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Alice Randall remembers the riots of 1967 in Detroit, Michigan
  • Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Alice Randall recalls her mother's work with the Surveys and Research Corporation
  • Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Alice Randall describes the riots of 1968 in Washington, D.C.
  • Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Alice Randall remembers the Georgetown Day School in Washington, D.C.
  • Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Alice Randall remembers her interest in the Jewish faith
  • Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Alice Randall recalls her teachers at the Georgetown Day School in Washington, D.C.
  • Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Alice Randall talks about her mother's emphasis on education
  • Tape: 3 Story: 10 - Alice Randall remembers learning to read
  • Tape: 3 Story: 11 - Alice Randall talks about her early interest in film
  • Tape: 3 Story: 12 - Alice Randall describes her favorite museums in Washington, D.C.
  • Tape: 3 Story: 13 - Alice Randall talks about her favorite television programs
  • Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Alice Randall talks about her first impressions of 'Gone with the Wind'
  • Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Alice Randall describes her early understanding of racism
  • Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Alice Randall recalls her experiences of discrimination in Nashville, Tennessee
  • Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Alice Randall describes her experiences of financial discrimination
  • Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Alice Randall talks about the development of her racial identity
  • Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Alice Randall recalls studying abroad at the University of London's Institute of Archaeology
  • Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Alice Randall describes her experiences in London, England
  • Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Alice Randall recalls applying to Harvard University
  • Tape: 4 Story: 9 - Alice Randall describes the topic of her college application essay
  • Tape: 4 Story: 10 - Alice Randall recalls her first impressions of Harvard University
  • Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Alice Randall remembers historian Nathan Huggins
  • Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Alice Randall talk about her favorite authors
  • Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Alice Randall reflects upon her experiences at Harvard University
  • Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Alice Randall describes her early career as a writer
  • Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Alice Randall talks about the origins of country music
  • Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Alice Randall describes her role as a professor
  • Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Alice Randall talks about the complexities of country and R and B music
  • Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Alice Randall shares her analysis of Chuck Berry's song, 'Memphis'
  • Tape: 5 Story: 9 - Alice Randall talks about the cultural context of country music
  • Tape: 5 Story: 10 - Alice Randall recalls her start as a country songwriter
  • Tape: 5 Story: 11 - Alice Randall describes the inspiration behind her songwriting
  • Tape: 5 Story: 12 - Alice Randall talks about the subjects of her country song lyrics
  • Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Alice Randall talks about her career as a screenwriter
  • Tape: 6 Story: 2 - Alice Randall describes African American cowboy Britt Johnson
  • Tape: 6 Story: 3 - Alice Randall talks about her screenwriting projects
  • Tape: 6 Story: 4 - Alice Randall recalls her challenges as a screenwriter
  • Tape: 6 Story: 5 - Alice Randall describes her experiences working on the film 'Boomerang'
  • Tape: 6 Story: 6 - Alice Randall remembers selling the rights to her first film script
  • Tape: 6 Story: 7 - Alice Randall describes the development of her novel, 'The Wind Done Gone'
  • Tape: 6 Story: 8 - Alice Randall talks about the education gap in the African American community, pt. 1
  • Tape: 6 Story: 9 - Alice Randall talks about the education gap in the African American community, pt. 2
  • Tape: 7 Story: 1 - Alice Randall talks about her interpretation of 'Gone with the Wind'
  • Tape: 7 Story: 2 - Alice Randall recalls the lawsuit against her novel, 'The Wind Done Gone'
  • Tape: 7 Story: 3 - Alice Randall talks about the criticism of 'The Wind Done Gone'
  • Tape: 7 Story: 4 - Alice Randall describes the settlement of the lawsuit against 'The Wind Done Gone'
  • Tape: 7 Story: 5 - Alice Randall recalls speaking at the Margaret Mitchell House in Atlanta, Georgia
  • Tape: 7 Story: 6 - Alice Randall talks about the positive responses to 'The Wind Done Gone,' pt. 1
  • Tape: 7 Story: 7 - Alice Randall talks about the positive responses to 'The Wind Done Gone,' pt. 2
  • Tape: 7 Story: 8 - Alice Randall describes the critical acclaim for 'The Wind Done Gone'
  • Tape: 8 Story: 1 - Alice Randall describes her current projects
  • Tape: 8 Story: 2 - Alice Randall describes her hopes and concerns for the African American community
  • Tape: 8 Story: 3 - Alice Randall talks about her concerns for African American children
  • Tape: 8 Story: 4 - Alice Randall describes her lessons to her daughter
  • Tape: 8 Story: 5 - Alice Randall talks about her daughter's obstacles in school
  • Tape: 8 Story: 6 - Alice Randall reflects upon her career
  • Tape: 8 Story: 7 - Alice Randall reflects upon her legacy
  • Tape: 8 Story: 8 - Alice Randall describes her family
  • Tape: 9 Story: 1 - Alice Randall describes how she would like to be remembered
  • Tape: 9 Story: 2 - Alice Randall narrates her photographs