Thursday, August 18, 2022
6:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Marcus Garvey Park
18 Mt. Morris Park West, New York, NY 10027
Tickets or RSVPs are not required to attend this FREE performance and admission is first come first serve.
The Last Poets are the forefathers of hip-hop, wielding poetry’s rhythmic and political power years before the first MC picked up a mic to move a crowd dancing to breakbeats. They formed in 1968 on Malcolm X’s birthday in Harlem as just three poets and a drummer, drawing their name from South African poet “Little Willie” Kgostile, who declared his era to be the last age of poets before the complete takeover of guns. After their self-titled debut cracked the US pop charts, they were targeted—along with other political agitators—by the FBI’s COINTELPRO, but continued to influence culture at the margins, releasing more than a dozen albums and inspiring and collaborating with multiple generations of hip-hop artists. Their current lineup includes Umar Bin Hassan, Baba Don, and founding member Abiodun Oyewole with Jamaaladeen Tacuma (bass), Ronnie Burrage (drums), and Kelvyn Bell (guitar). The IMPACT Repertory Theatre draws from the Harlem-based program for 12-19 year olds that uses performing arts and leadership training to empower underserved New York City youth, creating a safe space for young people to explore the issues they face through current events and their own personal experience. Harlem’s Bomb Shelter is a monthly retreat for young adult poets to unplug from every day life and express their experiences, thoughts, and ideas through poetry, song, and spoken word. SummerStage alum Greg Caz, a diehard Last Poets fan and record collector, DJs.