Sekou Sundiata on music, poetry, East Harlem and activism

2,660
In this edition of HoCoPoLitSo's "The Writing Life", poet and cultural historian E. Ethelbert Miller talks with poet and jazz musician Sekou Sundiata. Both men grew up in East Harlem housing projects, and Sundiata says the many cultures and voices of that neighborhood are heard in his poetry. The "citizen poet," as Sundiata calls himself, arose in the 1960s and 1970s, when he started writing activist poetry, poetry that appeals democratically to many. Sundiata explains that he and his band arrange the music and the poetry he authors in a synergistic way. "Poetry is part of the music itself," Sundiata says. The music and rhythms of the black church experience, as well as blues, affect his work, he says. "For me, the blues is a philosophical stance." His poetic influences include Gil Scott Heron, Amiri Baraka and Linton Kwesi Johnson, whose "Naked History" album is poetry and music people can live with, a goal Sundiata looks to attain with his own work.
For more information, to donate or to purchase copies of this program for your classroom or library, visit www.hocopolitso.org.

Most Watched Media Last 5 Minutes

Damn'co | PARIS BY NIGHT

Featured
Details
1,734 views

Social Media - spoken word poetry

Featured
Details
5,381 views

Gregory Porter | Full Concert 2016

Featured
Details
4,099 views

Irwin Hall | B-Side

Featured
Details
1,432 views

Damnco | BARBES

Featured
Details
6,614 views

Fashion Videos | Trending

Art Videos | Trending

Bruni Sablan | Global Icon Paintings

Featured
Details
2,328 views

Revolution Art |

Featured
Details
4,770 views

Laolu NYC Shoe Art Timelapse

Featured
Details
2,920 views

Jo's Gallery Introduces | Lashun Beal

Featured
Details
2,365 views

Kerry James Marshall | Self-satisfied

Featured
Details
2,736 views

Poet's Corner | Trending