Latest Performance

I'm a small-town poet in both written word and performance. I'm more influenced by rock and roll but I am also a lit-chick full of curiosity. My influences are far and wide and I can find writing inspiration in anything, from important matters to pure whimsy.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Poetry to Music? Of Course!

Tonight is open mic, and another performance for me. I'm doing things a little different this time. Steve is going to be mixing music live while I do my reading. I'm also going to be reading in costume, it's a bridal theme. Inspired by my sister-in-law's upcoming divorce.

It's going to be unconventional and bombastic. You can do poetry to music though, it's been done before. As seen in the Poetry in Motion project from a previous post. Jim Morrison also had poems set to music. The album Strange Days featured the poem Horse Latitudes, with audio track, and the music made it even more frightening.

There was also his posthumous album An American Prayer, where the surviving members set music to many of Morrison's poems. Of course we can't forget Celebration of the Lizard which has been performed live as well.

It was actually getting into the music of The Doors and Jim Morrison that made me want to first become a poet. This was a little over a decade ago and my easily-influenced teenage mind found something dark and subversive about Morrison's work. I wanted to do the same and was writing on and off for about ten years before I decided to take poetry seriously in terms of my own writing. At the time I knew nothing of contemporary poetry, or poets who broke boundaries. The most contemporary poet I knew of at the time was Shel Silverstein (whose poetry I've always loved). Other than that, I only knew of the classic poets you learn about in school. There was no writer's retreat back then, no focus on modern poetry in English classes, just a unit on classic writers and poetic devices.

I would like to see things modernize a bit more. Part of the problem is that people usually associate poetry with stuffy grad-students/academics and beginners just starting who might not even think of making some sort of career out of it. You know, the stereotypical "emo-kid" who "whines" in their livejournal. Not a lot of people think of the world outside of those extremes. It's sort of like wine, how some people see wine drinkers as either snobs or the cheap wino. Take that dichotomy away and wine can be a fun thing to get into. It's fun to experiment with wine/food pairings, or see how different kinds of wine taste, and some are pretty tasty!

Speaking of which, do I want to bring wine to open mic? If so what kind?

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