SLAM KING POETRY CONTEST
The night was perfect...15 extremely talented poets came out, some 300 plus spectators, fans and poetry lovers were in attendance, jam packing the Nuyorican Poets Cafe until the cafe was "squeezing room only"
The host was none other than Bryonn Bain (The Nuyorican 2000 Grand Slam Champion).
Bryonn's was an excellent host, he carried the audience throughout the long night with humor, charm and intellect. You would have to be there to fully grasp this description, but basically he did a great Job.
The night started out with some uncertainties because half of the contestants were missing in action. Only 9 poets were in the house when the event was about to start. Decisions had to be made. Several announcements were made for anyone interested in slamming to see Tehut-Nine or Bryonn.
Four poets responded
Gerren Liles (Brooklyn, NY)
2. Boogeyman (Cleveland, OH)
3. Curtis (Boston, MA)
4. Tif Salim (Baltimore, MD)
With their participation there were now 13 contestants, we decided to start the slam. Each contestant picked a number out of Tehut-Nine's hat to decide the order they would go in, the results were:
7.Jamaal St. John
With that out of the way. Tehut-Nine was called to the stage. He welcomed the audience, the contestants, and announced the sponsors. As a treat to the audience Tehut-Nine performed a short medley with two poems from his upcoming book "Mental Eye-roglyphics" which will be available for purchase in Jan. 2001 at WWW.SUNRASON.COM. The crowd was warmed up, but it was about to get hot! as Bryonn prepared to bring up the featured Poet.
The Feature was none other than the exceptional, the beautiful Thema Bryant winner of the 2000 SLAM QUEEN Poetry Contest produced by Sun-Ra-Son Prod, Co. back in November. She was magnificent and the crowd loved her, she wooed them with her words and passion, setting the mood for night.
It was about 11:15pm and now we were ready to get the slam going. The sacrificial goat did his thing but a tough set of judges (mostly females) were not giving up anything easy, his tally was a 16.1
However in the middle of his performance two more poets walked in, they were none other than the skilful wordsmith D'the Schizophrenic and the Mighty Talaam Acey. After consulting with several poets as to whether they wanted to redraw numbers,for the order everyone would go in. Contestants rejected the idea of redrawing for numbers, because they were happy with the number(order they would go in) they had so D' the Schizo decided to be 14 and Talaam 15.
Wasting no time after the sacrificial goat was finished the first round was on it way. The results were
1.Austin Yearwood 21.4
3.Gerren Liles 27.4
9.D' Chase 26.9
14.D' the Schizo 27.5
15. Talaam 29.0
That was the first round, the second round would only include the top 5 who were. Jamaal St. John, Faraji, Curtis, Flowmentalz, Talaam The audience was enjoying the night as Tehut-Nine gave Bryonn T-Shirts from Ecko Unlimited and Moshood, Calendars from Shadez Communications, Tapes and CD's from Barry U and Superpower records, Posters, etc...to give away to the audience. Bryonn also gave away candies, Books and Cd's which were contributed by poets in attendance.
The second round got on the way and the contestants were not holding any punches, it was fierce.
Jamaal went first scoring a 28.6
The last round was supposed to have only the top three, but Talaam and Jamaal Tied for that spot and so the third round moved on with Four finalist. The contestants once again drew numbers from Tehut-Nine's hat to determine their order and the results were
1. Jamaal St. John
2. Talaam Acey
3. Faraji Salim
With the exception of Jamaal St. John, everybody in this last round was from New Jersey. Newark(Brick City) was definitely feeling proud. The third round began and the audience was locked in, it was late but nobody was leaving their seats, to go anywhere. Jamaal went into his war chest and pulled out a big gun, that only fired nukes. His recital was vital, and his poem was explosive, by the time he walked off the stage everyone's mouth was on the floor, you could hear thoughts building themselves to say "Damn That Poem Was The BOMB" and indeed it was. The judges gave Jamaal a 29.7 Talaam Acey was up next. Now Talaam is a poetry god, make no mistake about that. He is easily one of the most talented poets and writers in the U.S.A.
When Talaam took to the stage you could feel the energy in the room. It was about to get hot as if winter wasn't even happening. The good deacon started speaking and the Nuyorican was enjoying it. His poem was performed with passion and soul. Talaam drew the audience into his world and captivated them. His performance was powerful, the judges gave him a 29.5
Next up was Faraji Salim, the griot for the new millenium. All night Faraji was rocking the house, from his first poem to his last, he was consistent, scoring higher and higher in each round. Faraji placed his legs firmly and took hold of the audience's mind and showed them that he was well endowed with deep thoughts and armed with verbal dexterity. I was very moved by his poem which was very thought provoking, the Judges were equally impressed. They gave him a 29.5
Finally Flowmentalz, came to the stage. I heard the judges beside me saying, "Oh, it's the Drama Man" they were definitely excited. Flowmentalz, has a special extra special way of marrying information with inspiration. He makes you laugh and listen. His last poem was loved by the crowd as he talked about boxing with God. The Nuyorican was definitely feeling him, the judges gave him a 29.2
The slam was over. The results were close, but the winner and 2000 King of Slam is "The wordplay caster, Metaphor Master" JAMAAL ST. JOHN.. Talaam and Faraji Tied for 2nd & 3rd place.
As the Winner Jamaal received the following:
-A nextel cell phone
-A back pack from Ecko Unlimited
-Several Shirts from Moshood, and Ecko
-2001 Calendar from Shadez Communications
-Tapes and CD's from Barry U and Super Power Records
-A Gift Certificate with Kevin Powell's New Book "Step into a world" courtesy of Indigo Cafe & Books
-Colin Channer's Book, "Waiting In Vain" and the new Anthology "Got To Be Real" Courtesy of Colin Channer
Talaam & Faraji also received gifts:
-Shirts from Ecko Unlimited
-Colin Channer's book "Waiting in Vain"
The Hosts and Feature were also awarded T-Shirts from Moshood and Ecko Unlimited, etc...
The night ended and we all went home. Stay tuned for more upcoming Sun-Ra-Son events. Get Tehut-Nine's New Book "Mental Eye-roglyphics" which will be available for purchase Jan. 2001 online at WWW.SUNRASON.COM. If you would like to mail order you can send $15.00 Check or money order to:
Sun-Ra-Son Prod, Co.
P.O. Box 2020,
Canal St. Station,
NY, NY 10013.