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Your favourite performance poets

That you've seen live...heard on Myspace or on here..met..or just simply spotted from afar and wished to steal everything they've ever written.

I love all the biggies such as Nathan Filer, Byron Vincent, Tim Clare, Dominic Berry, Scroobius Pip, MC Dockers etc.

Who are some of the ones that have inspired you?
Sat, 21 Mar 2009 07:25 pm
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Without a shadow of a doubt, Gerry Potter (formerly Chloe Poems). Mystical, mythical, atheist, socialist, elegiac, funny, clever, inventive....
....not bad for a Scouser.

Sat, 21 Mar 2009 08:38 pm
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Oh I remember Chloe poems - a name change? How did this come about?
Sat, 21 Mar 2009 08:58 pm
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Not sure. But I think one of the first time he performed 'as himself' was at a gig at the culmination of a poetry performance course he was running a couple of years ago. I was on the course so I saw Gerry before I ever saw Chloe. I prefer Gerry.

I am lucky to be performing with him at Manchester Central Library on 28th May to commemorate the demise of the Ugly Tree magazine.
Sat, 21 Mar 2009 09:04 pm
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Dominic Berry. Pah!

Gerry Potter. Poh!

Jackie Hagan. Puh!

Simon Rennie. No, he's not really my cup... I mean... Peh!

In all seriousness, I think it's a difficult question to answer. Writers are an inconsistent bunch - but then I think that's what makes hearing or reading a new poem so exciting. Sometimes it's great, sometimes not so great.

There's a lot to be said for the new. I love it when somebody just goes all out (established or new writer) and tries something jaw-droppingly different. It shows what we can and can't do with poetry - be it a blinding success or dying on yer arse failure. It's brave, it shows that our artform is alive and it's bloody interesting.

I'd also like to think that most poets (including all those listed above) would baulk at the idea of being categorised. The label of performance poet, I think, does that. It suggests that one is either a performance or page poet - that one type of poet is preoccupied with entertainment whilst the other is more focused upon text. Such an assumption is, of course, complete fucking bollocks.

Happy to discuss.
Mon, 23 Mar 2009 08:59 pm
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Pete Crompton

Dave Bateman
Nat Clare
Tony Walsh
Paul Blackburn.
ALabaster De Plume.
Gordon Zola
Steve Regan
Gus Johnson
Louise Fazackerly

I noticed a lot of the performance poets are slam winners, seems slamming and performance have a connection at times. Im a slam fan.
Fri, 27 Mar 2009 11:55 am
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I remember being inspired by performance poets on the London circuit years ago... such as Jem Rolls (dunno what's happened to him) but while I've been back in the north-west these past five years I haven't got around to many venues / nights, preferring to stick to running the Bards of New Brighton, so I'm not sure I know what's what yet.

Here in Wirral I think Malpoet is very good, and there are others from our little sub-regional circuit (Wirral Words, Wirral Ode Show, and the Bards of New Brighton) who are quality, but I don't want to be unfair by listing some and not listing others.

I have to say a big thanks to Pete Crompton for including moi in his list of performance poets (previous comment). That's praise indeed because Pete is a star.

A good poet is more precious than rubies, and much more important to the human condition, and Pete C very good indeed.

Sun, 29 Mar 2009 06:10 pm
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George Chopping is an interesting and humourous poet.
Mon, 30 Mar 2009 12:27 pm
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Helen Thomas

Gerry Potter (formerly Chloe) wins hands down for me. I may be wrong but I think that Chloe was deemed a bit too risky for some poetry bookers - we live in dodgy times when our freedom of speech is in grave danger...
that said, I think Gerry's poetry has taken an interesting new direction since the demise of Ms. Poems.
David Bateman is, in my opinion, criminally under-rated. His poetry stands up to scrutiny on the page irrespective of his skill as a performer.
I've also got a soft spot for Carol Batton - arguably she's not the most polished of performers but watching / listening to here is always an experience and I do think she's a one off, living legend and a Manchester treasure.
Wed, 15 Apr 2009 01:17 am
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Russell Thompson

As Steve O'Connor says, it's the ones that seem to have a style like nothing else on earth, the ones that make you think "Where did THAT come from?".

For me, that's folk like
David J
Suzanne Andrade
and a select handful of others.
Mon, 27 Apr 2009 12:43 pm
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spencer robertshaw

John Cooper Clarke
A rare genius who once walked down the wrong street.
This stopped him becoming the best peoples poet ever.
It has not stopped him being the best at what he does and starting the charge for a lot of poets.
This chap saved me from life giving me a good kicking and I will always owe him one for that.
Spencer
Sun, 26 Jul 2009 04:22 pm
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Jeff O

I quite like J.W BAz and algebra suicide are good
Fri, 20 Aug 2010 10:32 am
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never seen one
never been tempted into one
(even though I have many times drunk in a bar in a room next to the toilets that was used by poets that performed in one.)
why?
because the audience was always bigger
in the bar that served ale.
Fri, 20 Aug 2010 02:10 pm
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i personally love everybody who has the guts to simply get up on stage and perform.. lot of great poets in the manchester area (no need to name them all again) but Lemn Sissay always sticks in my head once for a reading at waterstones in manchester and a 2 minute poem ended up becoming a 10 minute poem! lol

Linton Kwesi Johnson has always had a soft spot in my heart from a reading i saw him do solo when i was 17 at i think the zion centre in hulme
Sun, 22 Aug 2010 11:27 am
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darren thomas

To be frank... I think most 'performance poets' are up their own arse. Show me a book of poetry at page seven and I will show you the Slam.
Mon, 23 Aug 2010 07:49 pm
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Rachel Bond

My fav performance poet...

michael wilson, I love his style, content, the quirky sign, the words all blended into a gorgeous slow regular rhythm...he has a voice like honey and his accent beautifully sounds all the vowels the way i understand them...Im lulled the same way I was during the time i spent in ireland by anyone who cared to talk to me. I am fascinated by anything the owner of a voice so lyrical has to say...Michael could read me a bus timetable and id be smiling and dreamy and ready to go anywhere he cared to lead me...now thats talent.

Pete C is on this list because hes a rare bird that can write the most amazing words and concepts on paper AND command great performance in varying styles ASWELL!

BUT, the art of poetry for me is in the writing I have many favourite poets. Performance poetry is a skill of is own, quite different to writing...I like Pete cos he does both well but with most work, the performance element is just to get the words heard and if theyre clear and read the way the poet intends them to be heard...them its job well done for me.

But, I have to agree with Darren...as a performance poet I suck..its the most pretensious thing i have ever done in my life. My poetry should have stayed on the page of the journal where all my other personal shit hides. Its been fun, but Ive always known its not my calling to read poetry out loud. I am no actress.

But I CAN dance and you should all know that. if you dont, then show me where the dancefloor's at and I'LL show you POETRY x

Mon, 23 Aug 2010 10:33 pm
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Of the poets I have shared a stage with...

in no particular order

David J
Kate Tempest
Kat Francois
Tshaka Campbell
Beyonder
Indigo Williams
Polarbear
Suli Breaks
Spliff Richard
Deanna Rodger
Mista Gee
Will Stopha
Anthony Anaxagorou

I like a lot of poets, but stick these guys into youtube.
Sun, 12 Dec 2010 01:32 am
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After just chatting to him I better add Mark Niel!
Sun, 12 Dec 2010 10:51 am
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