What I do

I teach courses on the cultural and psychological history of African American music, including the spirituals created by enslaved African Americans. Additionally, I teach courses focused on the cultural and psychological intersection of issues of race, class and gender in the United States. I have a secondary interest in the use of the spiritual/psychological tool known as the Enneagram, and I use that as the basis for teaching a seminar on musical performance psychology, I also participate, as singer and faculty affiliate, in the work of The Spirituals Project at the Lamont School of Music.


Cultural and psychological functions of African American music, class and gender in the United States<br>Musical Performance Psychology

Professional Biography

In September 1, 2016, I was appointed as a full-time Teaching Professor in the Musicology, Ethnomusicology and Theory Department at the DU Lamont School of Music (http://www.du.edu/ahss/lamont/faculty-staff/faculty/jones-arthur.html). Previously, I served as a Clinical Professor in the DU Psychology Department for 18 years (Fall 1991- Spring 2009), and subsequently as a Clinical Professor and Associate Dean at DU's Colorado Women's College for seven years (Fall 2009 - Spring 2016). Before coming to DU I held full-time faculty appointments at the University of Illinois - Springfield (1975-1977), Bowling Green State University (1977-1978), and the University of Colorado Medical School (1978-1981), and operated a private practice in clinical psychology (1981-1995). I have had a longstanding interest in issues of diversity and inclusion, dating back to my first academic position at the University of Illinois-Springfield in the mid 1970’s. Much of my scholarly work, reflected in publications, presentations and workshops, has focused on African American music culture, including the interconnections between issues of culture, power and privilege. I am the Founder of the University of Denver-based Spirituals Project, which works to preserve and revitalize the music and social justice teachings of the sacred folk songs created and first sung by enslaved African Americans. The Spirituals Project became an official program of the DU Lamont School of Music in Fall Quarter, 2016. As a singer, I has have presented solo concert and lecture programs on spirituals throughout the United States.


  • Ph.D., Clinical psychology, University of Iowa, 1974
  • MA, Clinical psychology, University of Iowa, 1969
  • AB, Psychology, Drew University, 1967

Licensure / Accreditations

  • Colorado professional psychology license
  • Ohio professional psychology license
  • Illinois professional psychology license

Professional Affiliations

  • National Association of Negro Musicians
  • C.G. Jung Society of Colorado


The contributions of legendary tenor Roland Hayes to the development of the concert spirituaL

Areas of Research

African American spirituals

Featured Publications

Jones, A. C. (2005). Wade in the Water: The Wisdom of the Spirituals. Boulder, CO: Leave a Little Room Foundation.
Jones, A. C. (2004). The foundational influence of spirituals in African American Culture: A psychological perspective. Black Music Research Journal, 24(2), 251-260.
Jones, F., & Jones, A. C. (2001). The Triumph of the Soul: Cultural and Psychological Aspects of African American Music . In . Westport, CT, USA: Praeger Publishers.
Jones, A. C. (2007). Changing culture-scapes. Open Dialogue XI: Global Connections to Cultural Democracy. Denver, CO, USA: The Western States Arts Federation.
Jones, A. C. (2004). Black spirituals, physical sensuality, and sexuality: Notes on a neglected field of inquiry. In A. B. Pinn & D. Hopkins (Eds.), Loving the Black Body: Black Religious Studies and the Erotic. . New York, NY, USA: Palgrave Macmillan. .


Jones, A. (2014). "No Enemies" Rally and Workshop. "No Enemies" Collective. Flobots, Denver, Colorado .
Jones, A. C. (2015). African American Spirituals: A Weekend Workshop. Arthur Jones - Solo. Celeste Productions and Metro Detroit Performing Arts Center, Detroit, Michigan.
Jones, A. (2015). Inauguration Luncheon - Governor John Hickenlooper. Spirituals Project Choir. Governor John Hickenlooper, Denver, Colorado.
Jones, A. (2014). Cleo on Cleo. Solo. Cleo Parker Robinson Dance, Denver, Colorado.


Jones, A. C. (2017). "'Oh Freedom': Singing Our Way to Dr. King's Beloved Community". Annual MLK Celebration. Vermillion, South Dakota: University of South Dakota.


  • Honorable Menola Upshaw Humanitarian Lifetime Achievement Award, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Colorado Holiday Commission
  • (Denver) Mayor’s Award for Excellence in the Arts, Denver Office of Cultural Affairs
  • Denver “Unsung Heroes” Award, Denver Mayor's Office
  • Distinguished Career Award, National Association of Negro Musicians
  • First Book Award, Catholic Press Association of America