May 22, 2017

Nitty Gritty Slam #127, May 16

On the third Tuesday of each month the Nitty Gritty Slam (which also takes place as an open mic only on the 1st Tuesday of the month at The Low Beat) holds a, well, Slam, hosted by Amani O+, aided & assisted by Alfonso Rodriquez. But there is also an open mic. That’s more my speed.

Amani opened up the night with a reading of “Black G.U.R.L. Fly” from her book Here We Are At The Gate: Book 1 of the Amani O+ Rebelutionary Series. I read a couple poems, “What Makes America Great #14” (from a series of true stories from the Trump Era), then an even newer poem “The Day God Invented Wine.”

Mz Tu also has a book out & read 2 poems from it, “Eaten Alive” (a lion & a gazelle) & one about conflict on the job “The Confederate Symbol.” L-Majesty’s piece, “Malacaust,” about the website Grindr. Ramon had 2 pieces, a personal one using images of prison, then a political poem on the Statue of Liberty.

One of the features of The Low Beat is Selena’s Kitchen, serving up plates of chicken, rice & beans & other dishes. Amani & Alphonso read the menu as a savory performance piece. Elizag gave us her “7 Reasons Why I Can’t Write 30 Poems in 30 Days.” Alfonso was back with a solo piece, “Better,” on the death of his mother. Poetik read about magic, “make room for the best things…” Aliya/Ay She Writes began with a short piece of self-affirmation with wings & broomsticks, then another on low self-esteem.

In between it all, DJ Trumstrand kept the room filled with sound. On to the Slam, with Olivia McKee serving as the “sacrificial”/practice poet for the 3 judges to score & ended up with a near-perfect 29.5.

There were only 4 poets signed up for the Slam: Mz Tu, Elizag, L-Majesty, & Mariah Barber, so all 4 did the first 2 rounds, Mariah scoring a perfect 30 in the first round. But after the 2nd round it was Mariah & L-Majesty to go head to head for the final round in a closely scored contest with Mariah taking 1st place, L-Majesty 2nd & Elizag announced as the 3rd place winner.

The Low Beat is at 335 Central Ave. The Nitty Gritty Slam is there on the 1st Tuesday for an open mic & the 3rd Tuesday for the Slam & an open mic, starts 7:00/7:30PM.

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