Continuing the “Writers Wednesday” series with yet another poet who I have the utmost respect for: SAUL WILLIAMS … Yes, his name is ALL CAPS worthy. If you don’t believe me, you just have not listened to enough poetry but specifically enough of his poetry. I mean he was on DEF POETRY JAM among many other things! (check the video below)
From Saul William’s website:
“Who I am and what I do seems to vary by mod, mood, and mode of expression. I write. I act. I perform. Most of the labels that are projected onto me are seldom how I would choose to refer to myself. Yet, regardless of how much I might dodge classification, the one label that I tote freely is that of being an artist. And it is the art of self expression that has heightened my experience on this planet and fueled my understanding of love, compassion, and humanity.”
The first time I ever heard of Saul Williams was back in 2004 when I found out that a poet that lived here in Phoenix at the time who I think is absolutely BRILLIANT said that he was very much influenced by Saul Williams. Once I heard that, I searched for all things Saul to immerse myself in his writing. He used to have a monthly or so email of one of his new poems (or maybe they were just new to me) and I LOVED IT!!! So GOOD! Seriously.
When Saul Williams started focusing on his music, I kind of fell off the Saul Williams bandwagon. That didn’t stop me from buying a ticket to the show he did in Flagstaff,AZ in April 2007. I could have went to meet him then, but I was having too much fun with Derrick Brown and Buddy Wakefield at the time (Check my archive for those posts). I was still not back on the bandwagon after that show, but after the next show I saw him at in Tempe, AZ in 2008. At this show I had a chance to observe him behind the scenes while I waited for my friend to finish taking down the stage equipment. That close proximity (even though we didn’t really interact) rekindled my interest in his work.
Fast forward from 2008 to 2012… I somehow got it in my head that my goal would be to perform on the same stage as Saul Williams. HOW? Heck if I know but I got that bug in my brain and fortunately for me the opportunity came up when a show was scheduled in Phoenix, AZ at my favorite local book store. I submitted my info to the promotion company and I GOT TO BE ONE OF THE OPENERS FOR SAUL WILLIAMS!
This was the serious high point of my career up to that point and I have been somewhat on hiatus since then while I prepare to sail around the world with a friend (click to see the Emuna Endeavor wordpress). That show was also great because it had been YEARS since I had heard his poetry and I realized again why I was SO enthralled with his work back in 2004. Such a great night! Check out my grin in the pic below if you don’t believe me! ^_^