Jumoke Fashola interviews Tshaka Campbell on BBC Radio in May 2013, as part of National Poetry Month (UK)
According to West African culture, a griot is one of the most prominent repository of the precious oral tradition and a key-figure of a community as he doesn't only hand down the most ancient cultural treasures and teachings of ancestors (sometimes fundamenteal for the preservation of some African countries past knowledge, if you consider the fact that many West-African countries, such as Senegal, Mali, Ghana or Nigeria, has no written documents of the glorious ancient ages...), but also have an influence on community's life as he normally combines its eloquence with singing skills for making satire or political comments, being quite close to the key-figure of the bard in European Middle Age historical memories. Even pop culture had sometimes celebrated griots, but the inspired spoken words of the talented Tshaka, whose work could be associated to the one made by arsonist trying to set even ashes on fire.
This gifted lyricist’s performance that dealt with the fears associated with love. Three poems were dispatched in fine style, each intricately plied with rich analogies, devastating metaphors and language
- Alex Saunders
In some way, shape or fashion, poets influence the circles we interact in. They are observers, activists or lovers from all walks of life. Famously, San Francisco was one of the places which incorporated the Beat Generation, a group of authors whose works influenced American culture, post-World War II. This led to the formation of the San Francisco Renaissance — a movement that brings to you 10 San Francisco Poets that you should know.