Black composers are still a rarity in the entertainment industry—but, increasingly, these talents are having their say on the soundtracks of films and TV shows.

This year, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences made history with the nomination of two films with Black composers for Best Original Score—Da 5 Bloods and Soul, which won the Oscar. But these projects are only a sampling of the sonic genius crafted by Black tunesmiths. Meet three you should know. 

This article originally appears in the November/December issue of ESSENCE on newsstands now.

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