Of the many poets appearing in SlamNation, the following
are featured most prominently.

 

 

Saul Williams at the Nuyorican Poets CafeSaul Williams/Team New York City

Saul's appearance in SlamNation helped land him the starring role in the movie
Slam which he co-wrote and which won the Grand Jury Award at the 1998 Sundance Film Festival as well as the Camera d'Or at Cannes.  He has also appeared with Kevin Spacey in the film K-Pax, on HBO's Def Poetry Jam and is a recurring character on the UPN television show "Girlfriends". He has three published books and 2 music CDs Amethyst Rock Star  and Saul Williams, and his poetry is part of the curriculum at universities and high schools across the US.

Interviews
The Oregonian
Mother Jones
The Academy of American Poets
Cincinnati's City Beat

 

Taylor Mali Taylor Mali/Team Providence

Taylor has won the National Poetry Slam Team Championships four times. Since putting his teaching career on hold, he has appeared on HBO's Def Poetry Jam, won Best One-Man Show at the US Comedy Arts Festival, and currently makes his living entirely as a spoken-word and voiceover artist.  He is the spokesman for teaching's nobility, the poet laureate of passion in the classroom.

Links
www.taylormali.com
Taylor reads Shipwreck at
the Bottom of the World
.

Taylor's home venue, Urbana
Taylor Mali reads the audio book
American Fairy Tales
.


Taylor's CD Poems from the
Like Free Zone
.

Taylor's poem "Like Lilly Like Wilson"
Education World publishes Taylor's "Objection Overruled"


Beau Sia Beau Sia/Team New York City

Beau Sia was one of the original cast members in Russell Simmon's Def Poetry Jam, on Broadway, a 2003 Tony Award winner. He also appeared in It's Showtime at the Apollo, HBO's Def Poetry Jam, the film Slam and has two spoken-word CD's Attack! Attack! Go! and Dope and Wack andthe book of poetry A Night Without Armor II: The Revenge.

Links
www.beausia.com
Beau's Book A Night Without Armor II: The Revenge
louderarts bio and poems
MP3's of 8-year-old Reject and What I Did Last Summer

Interviews
Earthly Matters interviews Beau
Radio Poetry
Philadelphia Citypaper

 

Marc SmithMarc Smith/Chicago SlamMaster

In 1986, at Chicago's Green Mill Cocktail Lounge, Marc Smith (So What!) started a Sunday night poetry show called the Uptown Poetry Slam. That show and the movement it inspired have revolutionized how poetry is presented and received in public performance. He is the "Slampapi," the father of the slam and the genesis of performance poetry. His book The Complete Idiot's Guide to Slam Poetry is the Bible of the what, why and how this international movement came into existence and evolved.

Links
www.slampapi.com
Marc's book Crowdpleaser
Chicago Center Stage Interview
Marc's poem "Underdog" fromThe United States of Poetry
Marc's Slam Manifesto, Slam Rules

Books by Marc Smith
The Complete Idiot's Guide to Slam Poetry

The Spoken Word Revolution: Slam, Hip Hop & Poetry of a New Generation


Patricia Smith /Team Boston

Patricia Smith received national notoriety after she was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize in journalism for her work as a columnist for The Boston Globe and it was discovered that some of her stories were fabricated.The nomination was subsequently withdrawn, and she was demonized by the press. She had won the National Individual Slam Championships four times.

Books
Life According to Motown.
Big Towns, Big Talk.
Close to Death.
Africans in America: America's
Journey Through Slavery.

Poems
"Asking for a Heart Attack"
"Sweet Daddy"
"Grace"
"Building Nicole's Mama"

 


muMs the schemermuMs the schemer/Team New York City

Hailing from the Bronx, muMs is a writer, performance artist, poet, playwright, actor and filmmaker.  He was one of the stars of the HBO dramatic series Oz and appeared in Spike Lee's Bamboozled and HBO's Def Poetry Jam. He wrote and appeared in the short film Morning Breath, which received an honorable mention at the Sundance Film Festival.

Links
www.sirmumsila.com
Biography at African American Literature Book Club
Purchase films starring muMs
HBO's inmate profile of "Poet"
HBO interviews Mums
Mums' poem "Cigarettes" from Episode 1 of Oz.

 

 

Alexandra Oliver

Alexandra Oliver/Team Vancouver

Alexandra Oliver was one quarter of Vancouver's first Slam Team at the Nationals in Portland in 1996. A poet since the age of six, she lives in Vancouver, Canada, where she teaches Academic Preparation and Creative Writing at Langara College and studies Argentine tango.

 

Jessica Care Moore Jessica Care Moore/Team New York City

Jessica Care Moore is an internationally celebrated poet. She is CEO of Moore Black Press and has published poets Saul Williams and Sharrif Simmons. She has appeared on HBO's Def Poetry Jam and is well known for her history making appearances on It's Showtime at the Apollo.

Links
MySpace page
African American Literature
Moore Black Press
The Words Don't Fit in my Mouth by (on amazon.com)

Interviews
Crusade.com

Poems
"I'm in Love with Potential"

Book
The Alphabet Verses: The Ghetto

 

Daniel Ferri /Team Berwyn, IL

Dan holds several Master's degrees, has been a potter, a fork lift truck driver and is currently a 6th grade school teacher. Dan is also a regular commentator for National Public Radio's All Things Considered. He retired from slam competition in 1999.  He lives in Lombard, Illinois with his wife Meriel, who is a musician, and his daughter Rosa.

NPR Commentary
How To Be A Teacher
Backwards Day
New School Year
Syllables
Dot Matrix Dancing
New Shoes
Standardized Tests
Recess
Practicing

Pearl Harbor Commentary
Sex Education
Harry Potter
Cheating
Teacher Remembers a Special Student
This I Believe: The Kindness of Strangers
More commentary...

Links

"Dancin' Circles"
article on standardized testing by Daniel Ferri

 

Brian Comiskey/Team Boston

A poet and roofer, Brian has been on Team Boston many times. In 1998, he won third place in the Individual Championships of the Austin National Poetry Slam.

 

Michael Brown/ Boston SlamMaster

Author of three books of poetry Michael has performed in the US National Slam Championships several times and organized the 1992 Nationals in Boston. He is the General Secretary of the Poetry Olympics, first held in Stockholm in 1998, co-director of The Culture of Peace, an international exchange of poets and artists, and is founder ofwww.slamnews.com. His day job is Professor of Communications at Mount Ida College, Newton.

 

Sean SheaSean Shea/Team Providence

Sean has been an instructor of Electronic Music at Brown University and a campaign manager for Lt. Governor of Rhode Island. He currently has an EP of swing music with the Canadian group "Combomatic."

 

Bill MacMillan

Bill MacMillan/Team Providence

Bill is founder host of the Worcester Poets? Asylum www.poetsasylum.org and helped organize the 2000 Poetry Slam Nationals in Providence. He runs poetry and recovery workshops, helps run a music festival for people in recovery, and drinks way too much coffee. In his other life, Bill is the Curator for Exhibits at the Higgins Armory Museum in Worcester. He lives in Worcester, MA with his wife Sou and son Liberty.

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Jack McCarthy/Team Boston

Jack was a member of the Boston team at the 1996 National Poetry Slam, and was an engaging minor character in the feature film "Slamnation," which documented those proceedings, and he was a member of the Worcester team at the 2000 National Poetry Slam, where he finished as the 10th ranked individual. The Boston Phoenix has named him "Best Standup Poet" the Boston Poetry Awards "Best Love Poet" and the Cambridge Poetry Awards "Best Spoken Word" and "Best Humorous Poet." The Boston Globe says, "In the poetry world, he's a rock star."
Recently relocated to the state of Washington, Jack can be reached at standupoet@yahoo.com.

Check out Jack's homepage