In "The Color of Water", what music could be used if it became a movie? I keep thinking of interracial music and can't come up with any...
McBride's white mother, Ruth Jordan, is a Polish Jew. She immigrates to Missouri shortly after her birth in the early 1920s. It might be nice to begin with some instrumental traditional Jewish songs (a link below to some samples.)
As as adult, she moves to New York where she meets and marries McBride's black father. This would put the timeframe around the late 1930s early 40s, so you might do well with some jazz and blues, as the Harlem music scene was thriving.
Their son James is born in Virgin in 1957. Consider adding some of the popular rock songs of the 50s or some music exculsively of Virigina.
Finally, did you know McBride himself is an accomplished musician? A link to his work is below.