Monday, March 3, 2014

Marvin X proposes a Black Arts Movement 27 City National Tour in honor of Amiri Baraka

The Black Arts Movement Poet's Choir

First row: Eugene Redman, Marshall Trammell, Tarika Lewis, Aries Jordan, Zena Allen, Avotcha
Back row: Marvin X, Kalamu Chache', Juan Felipe Herrera, Tacuma King, Lakiba Pittman, Askia Toure, Genny Lim, Umar Bin Hassan, Ayodele Nzinga

During a session of the Black Arts Movement Conference this past weekend at University of California, Merced, Marvin X proposed a 27 city tour in memory of Amiri Baraka, who often spoke about the 27 cities in America with large North American African populations. At $100, 000 per city, the estimated cost would be $2.7 million. After watching the BAM poets perform with musicians, a young rapper in Merced told Marvin X  the concert tickets should be in the $400.00 range. The young man was simply overwhelmed with the beauty and truth of the BAM poets and musicians.

Marvin X is known for drafting people into his projects, so although Kim McMillan, chief producer of the UC Merced BAM conf, says she will never do another event like this, Marvin X says Kim must continue to stand tall on the shoulders of the ancestors and be a critical factor in the success of the national BAM tour. It was the consensus of the BAM poets and musicians that this national tour should happen. Although we are elders and in various states of health, we yet have enough energy to make this project a reality, says Marvin X. We will begin organizing the tour ASAP. Community support will make this project a success, so send us your ideas and generous donations. 

This is an educational and consciousness  raising affair in the tradition of the Black Arts Movement, a spiritual and healing myth/ritual. If you support this project, please contact me at 510-200-4164; email To keep informed of our progress, stay tuned to 

poet Lakiba Pittman

 Poet Kalamu Chache'

 Poet/musician Avotcha

 Poet Juan Felipe Herrera

 BAM godfather Askia Toure

 Avotcha, Marvin X and Askia Toure

 MC Marvin X reading

 Poet Aries Jordan, Black Arts Movement Baby 2.0

 Eugene Redman of East St. Louis, MO

 Ishmael Reed gave the Sunday Keynote Address

 Poet Genny Lim with drummer Marshall Trammell

 Zena Allen on the Kora. She accompanied Marvin X with his Again the Kora poems. 

 Tarika Lewis, living legend artist/activist.

 Earl Davis was a member of Marvin X's Black Arts West Theatre, Fillmore District, San Francisco, 1966. He also performed with Sun Ra's Arkestra.

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