Poet Sekou Sundiata died this week at age 58; the cause was heart failure. Sundiata, who taught literature at New York City's New School University for many years, was considered one of the fathers of the spoken-word movement. He wrote the plays Blessing the Boats, The Circle Unbroken is a Hard Bop, The Mystery of Love, Udu, and the 51st (dream) state. His albums include Longstoryshort and The Blue Oneness of Dreams. We remember him with excerpts from interviews that originally aired in May 1994, April 1997, and November 2002.
He is one of New York's most notable spoken-word artists. He blends lyrics of urban dwelling with music. Born in Harlem, Sundiata is a professor of English literature at The New School for Social Research. He's released CDs of spoken word including The Blue Oneness of Dreams and Urban Music. This week, Sundiata premieres his new one-man show blessing the boats. It's about the year his kidney failed, he went into dialysis and then had a kidney transplant.