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Spoken Word
Eater of Worlds
Bedlam 
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Posted 11/28/07 , edited 5/20/09
Spoken Word- the art of performing poems, stories, and/or lyrics out loud to convey the artist's ideas and feelings. Spoken Word can range from the comedic to the empowering depending on the subject matter that the speaker wishes to undertake.

I believe that the best method of introducing you all to Spoken Word is by letting you hear them in action. I've linked 10 performances that I personally found inspiring, powerful, funny and thought-provoking. I hope y'all will feel the same way after watching some of these videos.

Most of these videos are from Def Poetry Jam... a television series on HBO produced by Russell Simmons that invites slam poets to perform their poems in front of a live TV audience.

Here they are in no particular order:

*WARNING* Some of these videos contain explicit language *WARNING*

1.) http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=FU-3tIPoi6w -- "They Call me Drama" by Flow Mentalez

(I laughed my ass off watching this. Very funny, very random.)

2.) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CWNPaKEFSSU -- "Lost and Found" by Denizen Kane

(This one gave me goosebumps. Take a listen.)

3.) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VmaWDCH2tBg -- "Revolution" by Sarah Jones

(Female Empowerment, it's a powerful piece of poetry. Thanks to haddon for this one. )

4.) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c5WgmbMW7Ek -- "This type of Love" by Shihan

(Ladies are going to LOVE this, but guys should still check it out! Shihan does a great job performing this. Not to mention it's pretty funny!)

5.) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wD-UpHlB9no -- "Niggers, Niggas and Niggaz" by Julian Curry

(God damn, this was powerful, funny AND thought provoking.)

6.) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C40EUMU3pFc&feature=related -- "Open Letter to the Entertainment Industry" by Beau Sia

(G'damn is this funny. It's about Asian stereotypes in the media. Take a listen!)

7.) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zi2LoWPImZE -- "Listen Asshole" by Yellow Rage


( Wow, Asian female perspective on exoticism. Amazing performance!)

8.) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RxsOVK4syxU -- "What Teachers Make" by Taylor Mali

(Hilarious and powerful. This actually made the front page of YouTube so some of you might have seen this already.)

9.) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=40hzLCdIulM -- " First Writing Since" by Suheir Hammad

(About 9/11, Palestine, and prejudice. This was really powerful and thought-provoking.)

10.) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XZNNTdUjt7o -- " Off the Hizzle for Shizzle " by Jamie Foxx

(Last but not least... my man, Jamie Foxx in this HILAFREAKINGLARIOUS spoken word piece.)

-----

I hope y'all took the time to check out some of the videos I've posted. Tell me what you people think.

For those that didn't know about spoken word before ... did you like it? yes... no, maybe? What videos did you watch on the list?

If you know about Spoken Word already, how did you hear about it? And tell me what artists you know. I'd love to check their work out.

Feel free to share your experiences with Spoken Word. Whether you've written a piece before, performed it in front of people, seen it live, interested in trying it out for yourself etc.

Remember that the performances I've shared are all open for discussion. Part of Spoken Word's magic is in provoking you to think about issues or things that you usually don't think about. So don't be afraid to share your feelings and opinions about the different performances.

Hope to hear from all of you soon!

-----

More Performances:

1.) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S9Zz7pexmMg -- " F*ck Ashton Kucher" by Dave Chappelle

(Holy Crap... I miss the Dave Chappelle show. Reminds me of the good old days. Dave Chappelle is a true comedian. This joint was fuuuunny!)

2.) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xqdux3rMKuo&feature=related -- " Friends, Fans, and Artists Must Meet" by Erykah Badu

(Oh my lord... she's amazing. funny and serious at the same time. I bumped into her once, in front of her record label in NYC. She's a tiny woman! But anyway, I digress. You MUST listen to this.)

3.) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gu_PQBmk-6c -- " If I Ran the Internet" by Rives

(So damn funny. I wish he did run the Internet... xD The email to dead people part was suppose to be part funny, part thoughtful reflection rather than just straight out laughter D: Silly audience.)

4.) *Removed* -- "Sa-I-Gu" by Ishle Park

( I met her before in an event for slam poetry. She's an amazing performer, and she's very nice in person!)

5.) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YfYg4yOYHss -- "We Are Men" by Shihan, Black Ice, and Poetri

(This is by far the funniest and most expressive piece I've heard in a long time. I never get tired of listening to this. Fellas, especially, gotta check this video out. Ladies, you know we're nothing without you. :D)

6.) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iRB9fXonu8c -- "Southern Heritage" by Jason Carney

(This almost made me cry. No joke, Jason Carney got to me man. You guys gotta hear what he has to say.)

7.) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FIx9yYZcJUA -- "Black Irish" by Eamon Mahoney and Paul Graham

(Black, White. We're all just trying to survive. This is some amazing, descriptive poetry. Their words come alive and paint the picture so vividly for me. It's an amazing performance. I'd give them a standing ovation if I was there.)

Edit: Updated the Dead Links. Enjoy Everyone!
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25 / F / Surrey, BC
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Posted 11/28/07
if you like spoken word the you should lookup saul williams
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28 / F / Cotton Candy Land~
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Posted 11/28/07
I like spoken word too Bedlam =] it gives a sense of feeling to what the speaker intended to say in their poem.
I did spoken word a while back, but it was just something for my self lol
actually im thinking of maybe doing one of my poems as spoken word =] and maybe share it on here or whatever =]
cool thread btw =p
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Bedlam 
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Posted 11/28/07

spikethebigbad wrote:

if you like spoken word the you should lookup saul williams


yeah, i was going to add one of his pieces on the list. but i got to 10 before it happened. D: It might be a little hard to digest at first, but this poem is phenomenal... give it time to seep in.

Here's my favorite performance of his for "Coded Language" -- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JpEAsSzmS34


N00NI wrote:

I like spoken word too Bedlam =] it gives a sense of feeling to what the speaker intended to say in their poem.
I did spoken word a while back, but it was just something for my self lol
actually im thinking of maybe doing one of my poems as spoken word =] and maybe share it on here or whatever =]
cool thread btw =p


Really Nooni? I would love to hear it some day. If anything, you should post it on this thread if you do! I was thinking of making this also a place for people to share their own personal spoken word videos :)~

I have a piece or two that I'll be willing to perform and upload. But it's not even close to done. I'm also nowhere near these people's level... but hey, in the end, it's all about being sincere to the work you're performing right? and anyway... since it's not a live audience, there's no chance of me bungling it up in the middle. xD
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22 / F / my mind is in my...
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Posted 11/28/07
They were really good, I never heard of this type of poetry before, but I really like it
Thanks for posting this
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27 / F / Kazakhstan
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Posted 11/28/07
1) what the hell!!!
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28 / F / Cotton Candy Land~
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Posted 11/28/07

"This type of Love" by Shihan
*happy sigh* simply wow =]

hmm sounds like a great idea Bedlam =]]
Eater of Worlds
Bedlam 
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Posted 11/28/07

whiteblackness wrote:

They were really good, I never heard of this type of poetry before, but I really like it
Thanks for posting this


I'm glad you enjoyed them whiteblackness. which videos did you watch? and of the ones that you did... which one did you like the most? feel free to elaborate on whatever video you like. this is as much of a discussion about the 10 performances that i've posted as it is an introduction to Spoken Word.


balthazaar21 wrote:

1) what the hell!!!


lol balthazaar. i'm not sure if you enjoyed it or just completely confused by it. did it make you laugh? :D


N00NI wrote:


"This type of Love" by Shihan
*happy sigh* simply wow =]

hmm sounds like a great idea Bedlam =]]


Yay, you saw it. I'm glad you liked it.

It most definitely is noonz... it would be awesome to see yours and others people's performances. It doesn't have to be perfect in the least bit. I just like hearing people do spoken word. And who knows, we may even be able to put up some constructive criticism for you.

And of course, we'll make doubly sure that the performances placed herein will be treated with respect. I really want to emphasize the meaning of safe space here; in that whoever comments on another's performance will treat them with respect and, if so warranted, give helpful and constructive criticism about their work irregardless of the content and subject that the person has chosen to perform .
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Posted 11/28/07
woh.. god dizzle ><... thet was funny. but the sister was right.. stop war. peace ppl... on other ones... asian power ya'll! what ya know? but yes was awesome good work making those compilations Bed. edit this regularly, should be awesome.
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Posted 11/28/07
I can't beleive people are forgetting the greatest spoken word performance of all time...

William Shatner - Rocket Man

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NN3MGN899yE

Yes, that's what Family Guy was referencing for the brats on here who haven't seen anything made before 1995.
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27 / F / Kazakhstan
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Posted 11/28/07
both
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22 / F / Neverland
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Posted 11/28/07
I liked it..
i heard about spoken word but I never actually heard them speaking like about the poems and stuff..
I loved it..
Eater of Worlds
Bedlam 
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Posted 11/28/07

darklord880 wrote:

woh.. god dizzle ><... thet was funny. but the sister was right.. stop war. peace ppl... on other ones... asian power ya'll! what ya know? but yes was awesome good work making those compilations Bed. edit this regularly, should be awesome.


Will do darklord! Glad you liked them. I'll try adding more to the list once I get more suggestions from the others. I'll keep the list of 10 performances unchanged and just add additional spoken word pieces to the bottom of my first post if people are hungry for more and are too lazy too search for it themselves. We'll just make a master compilation list of our favorite performances here. :D


azrael910 wrote:

I can't beleive people are forgetting the greatest spoken word performance of all time...

William Shatner - Rocket Man

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NN3MGN899yE

Yes, that's what Family Guy was referencing for the brats on here who haven't seen anything made before 1995.


Hahaha, I remember seeing Stewie do this in Family Guy. Nice to finally see the source... definitely early Spoken Word. I thought the music in the background took away from his piece a little though.

Did you see any of the videos on the list? And if so... what did you think of them? :)


please012 wrote:

I liked it..
i heard about spoken word but I never actually heard them speaking like about the poems and stuff..
I loved it..


Awesome! Which ones did you watch? And among those you saw... which one stood out the most in your mind?
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Posted 11/28/07
I watched them all and I liked all of them. They are really great! How come I never heard of these amazing people?
That poem by Suheir Hammad was amazing!
Eater of Worlds
Bedlam 
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Posted 11/28/07

bluxberry wrote:

I watched them all and I liked all of them. They are really great! How come I never heard of these amazing people?
That poem by Suheir Hammad was amazing!


I love, loved Suheir Hammad's poem. It was so poignantly and powerfully written. She performed it with such a meticulously soft yet commanding voice. I especially loved how her voice slowly went up into a crescendo and then went back down again. I really felt for the prejudices she faced.

Reminds me of how America placed the Japanese in internment camps during WW2. Hey... much like Guantanamo Bay now. And other secret prisons they've set up to collect "suspected" terrorists. :(
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