Poetry & Jazz: A Mashup Concert at Berkeley Public Library

March 31, 2015

Contact: Isobel Schneider
Berkeley Public Library


Poetry & Jazz: A Mashup Concert at Berkeley Public Library

Berkeley, March 31, 2015—April is National Poetry Month and the Library is going all out with our Poetry & Jazz @Central Concert on Saturday, April 18, 2:00-4:00 pm at the Berkeley Public Library at 2090 Kittredge Street in the 3rd floor Community Meeting Room. We have a great lineup: Al Young  accompanied by John Wiitala on bass; with three more sets of notable poets and musicians as they present the words and music of poetry: Avotcja with Val Serrant on steel drums, Phavia Kujichagulia with Ron Williams on guitar, The Word-Music Continuum with poet Kirk Lumpkin and musicians: Paul Mills, Mark Wieder, and special guest, Q.R. Hand, Jr. For questions regarding this program, call 510-981-6150.

Al Young was named Poet Laureate of California in 2005. "Like jazz, Al Young is an original American voice." — Muriel Johnson, former Director of the California Arts Council. Young is the award-winning author of several screenplays and more than 22 books of poetry and non-fiction. His work has appeared in Paris Review, Ploughshares, Essence, The New York Times, and Rolling Stone. Avotcja is an award winning poet & multi-instrumentalist. The 12th Annual Berkeley Poetry Festival honored Avotcja with its Lifetime Achievement Award in 2014. Her writing is published in English and Spanish in the USA, Mexico and Europe. “The passion and brutal honesty in her writing touches the depths of the hardest heart, while healing the damaged spirits of those gone astray.” — E.W. Wainwright of the African Roots Of Jazz. Phavia Kujichagulia calls herself a griot, an oral historian who utilizes music and poetry to reveal history. “Talking about Phavia Kujichagulia requires a certain amount of restraint. It would be easy and entirely appropriate to say she is a renaissance woman in the tradition of the 20th century’s first true eclectic, the late Paul Robeson” — Fresno Bee. The Word-Music Continuum is a unique performance ensemble uniting music with the spoken word. Ensemble members include Kirk Lumpkin doing poetry & percussion, Paul Mills on guitar, Mark Wieder on double bass.  “To say the house was rocked is an understatement. You were great! You showed us that the blend of word and music is limitless and that poetry has no bounds.” —William S. Gainer of the Nevada County Poetry Series.

This free program is sponsored by the Friends of the Berkeley Public Library: www.berkeleylibraryfriends.org.

The Central Library is located at 2090 Kittredge Street and is open Monday, noon - 8:00pm, Tuesday, 10:00am - 8:00pm, Wednesday through Saturday, 10:00am - 6:00pm, and Sunday from 1:00pm - 5:00pm.

Wheelchair accessible. For questions, to request a sign language interpreter or other accommodations for this event, please call (510) 981-6195 (voice) or (510) 548-1240 (TTY); at least five working days will help ensure availability. Please refrain from wearing scented products to public programs. Visit the library’s website: www.berkeleypubliclibrary.org.