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Saturday, September 17, 2005

The Golden Star Shines On: UK Poets Invasion

The Golden Star Lounge, Ottawa's original urban poetry series, returns to continue our mission of bringing high quality, professional artists from across Canada and around the world who represent the absolute best in spoken word poetry.

On Sept. 17, in association with the Mercury Lounge, the Golden Star Lounge presents, for the first time in Canada THE UK POETS INVASION: THE BEST KEPT SECRET Featuring TUGGS.T.A.R., Amen Noir, ShakaRA, OneNess
With special guest from Toronto, the Original One
Hosted by Ottawa's 2004 Slam Champion, the nth digri
Saturday, September 17, 2005, 7:30-10:00 PM
The Mercury Lounge, 56 Byward Street, Ottawa
Tickets $9.00

Featuring international spoken word artists, The Best Kept Secret, four of the UK scene's most exciting performers, on a North American tour that includes stops in New York and Toronto (Dwayne Morgan's International Slam). They have performed with Dead Prez and The Last Poets, featured on MTV, and toured England, Scandanavia, and the United States. Their members include TUGGS.T.A.R, OneNess, Amen Noir, and shakaRA. As well, Ottawa's own the Original One returns to town fresh off a national tour where he thrilled audiences with his calpyso-styled poetry, beat boxing skills, and captivating erotic verse (as heard on his CD, If Yuh Heard, and as read in the TDot-Griots and Black Erotica anthologies).

For more info on this and other GSL shows, click The Golden Star Lounge.
For more info on The Best Kept Secret, click
For more info on the nth digri, click

the nth digri, the host for tonight's event, broke the ice with 'Dis Poem' (featured on the CD Tales From the North Coast). Next up was Da Original One with some excellent lyrical poems and wowed the crowed with his masterful talent of being a "beat boxer". Eddy explained for those who are unfamiliar with the term, that it is "somebody who can make accoustical music with their mouth." He went on to shine his skills performing "Momma wouldn’t buy me a drum machine". (Well worth the price of the $9.00 admission) Just awesome. You can also read more of the poems he recited on his webpage such as "Jourvay Booty" and "Your spirit whispered to mine". The audience also squeezed an encore from him.

Anthony also performed a new poem called "72 hours" which he wrote for the people in New Orleans. You can read the transcript of the poem on his website. I asked Anthony how he came to know of this troupe and he responded, "I originally met Tuggstar in Toronto at one of the Up From the Roots events promoted by Dwayne Morgan [approximately] three years ago. I saw him perform again two years ago at the Toronto International Poetry Slam (he placed third). I loved his work, and when I heard form Eddy Davids (The Original One) that the rest of his group, The Best Kept Secret, were coming to Toronto this September and that they were interested in performing in other Canadian cities, I jumped at the chance to bring them to Ottawa." More than just a mere poetry reading, the UK Poets delivered a brilliantly polished performance with strong messages. The poets stood out from the crowd with their stylish clothing line supplied by 'Fresh Flames'.

Although the Mercury Lounge is clearly an intimate location for such readings, I fear that the very narrow stage space with its huge vaulted ceiling mutes and garbles the sometimes subtle voices that were part of the performance. The micophones could not distinctly pick up the quietest words, at least to me, and I was up front. To me, these are big performers and as such, deserve bigger venues. Don't miss the next The Golden Star Lounge urban poetry series which is to be held on Friday, 28 October at the East African Restaurant featuring Storm (Toronto)And Taqralik Partridge (Montreal).

Eddy David, a.k.a. Da Original One.

the nth digri, a.k.a. Anthony Bansfield

Amen Noir

The Best Kept Secret featuring (left to right) Amen Noir, OneNess, shakaRA, and TUGGS.T.A.R. Absent tonight was ShortMAN.

OneNess with men on bended knee for the lady.

The Best Kept Secret with Da Original One [second on left]

Amen Noir, OneNess, nth digri


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks for the story John. Your site is loading fast again from here btw.

Monday, September 19, 2005 9:29:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hotep my brotha!
It's AmeN NoiR! All power to u and yours god!Bless for the photos, correction and support that was shown on our trip to Ottawa (spelt correctly) I'm gonna set up a link to your site also god! Love, Justice & Peace...

Sunday, October 16, 2005 4:52:00 AM  

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