Part 2, 3 of June: The Beijing Grand Slam at Yue Space.

Part 2, 3 of June:

The Beijing Grand Slam at Yue Space.

Text by Matthew Byrne, Spittoon director.

As part of the Beijing Underground Summer Music Days, Spittoon and BLK GEN are proud to present the first ever Beijing Grand Slam competition at Yue Space on Sunday 3rd of June.

There are TWO major features of the event – a SLAM COMPETITION – and a special series of CHINESE SLAM POETS – slamming in Chinese for the first time after a series of BILINGUAL SLAM WORKSHOPS run by Zoe Xie.

What is a poetry slam?

It’s a spoken word competition where the poets recite their own poetry and are not allowed to read from their phone or paper. Spoken word has been around for centuries but slams are a much more recent event that started in the Chicago in 1984. Slam poetry is a spoken word form of poetry that is largely influenced by the free verse and musical style.

What are the rules?

There are no formal rules for the style or structure you must use. Poets sometimes utilize rhyme schemes, rhythms, pausing to add dramatic effects, pacing (speeding up and slowing down), and dynamics (going from a whisper to a shout). As for the rules to compete they are:

1. It has to be your own piece. You cannot use someone else’s work.

2. You can’t read from a piece of paper, book, phone, etc.

3. NO PROPS. You can’t wear costumes, play music or use props while you are performing.

4. You will have 3 minutes to perform with a 10 second grace period.

作为北京夏季地下音乐节的一部分,spittoon 和 BLK GEN 自豪的宣布北京首次诗歌吟诵大赛6月3日星期天在乐空间举行。



这是口头语诗歌比赛,在比赛中诗人背诵自己的诗歌作品,并不允许看手机或稿纸。口头语已经流传了几个世纪,但是诗歌吟诵是1984年起源于芝加哥的一个近代活动。 吟唱诗是诗歌的一种口语形式,深受自由诗体和音乐风格影响。


PJ, a Wyoming native, was dragged into slam in a meteor meets the dinosaurs kinda way… there was an impact to say the least. At 15, out of nowhere poets like Anis Mojgani and Jesse Parent would change the course and direction of his life. Parent took him in to begin competing in slams at that young age, and he never looked back. He began touring across the U.S. featuring at universities, bars, and cafes, as well as teaching workshops…. and then some devastating tragedy happened (college) and he ceased to write for 3 or more years… Finally, after moving across the world, the small underground slam scene in Beijing has helped him find his voice and pen again.

OKIN a.k.a NikolaiTNB is a Slam Poet & Hip-Hop Performer from Windhoek, Namibia was born to Namibian freedom fighters in the late 80’s & whose content ranges from a multitude of topics, including but not limited to Love, Life, Politics, the Black African Identity & Struggles experienced throughout his life & those of people he has met on his journeys.

As one third of critically acclaimed Hip-Hop/Poetry group Black Vulcanite, much of his content hinges around storytelling & he has been published in online & print Poetry Anthologies in South Africa & the United States, as well as various online & print magazines over the last 10 years.

Holly Baer is a writer and a teacher from Collins, Mississippi. She’s written for The Daily Mississippian, the Jackson Free Press, and Freethought Today, as well as She was featured in Confluence, a collection of poetry and short stories published by the University of Mississippi and Kingston University in London. She has done readings in Beijing with BLK GEN’s women’s day event in 2017, as well as Spittoon poetry and slam nights. She maintains a blog, . You can follow her on most social media platforms @HawliBear. She spends her days teaching small children or drinking flat whites at the nameless hutong coffee shop 50 meters from Beixinqiao Exit C.

Jumi grew up in Washington DC and went to her first spoken word event at 13 in Oakland. Since the, she has organized open mics and published two poetry chapbooks, I Luv Woman Girl Machine and Beware Of Dogs. Jumi has performed in venues in DC and Chicago, now performing in Beijing. When she’s not performing, she is teaching history or telling you a story about the ocean.

J.Penn was born and raised in New York. He has been performing and writing most of his life. Receiving theater training in both High School and College. The honest to God truth is, for J Penn, a voice is the most important possession a person can have. Not everyone has a voice that can be heard, so he use his voice to speak for those that cant speak.

Da MC (Simba Chikonye) is a Afrocentric conscious HipHop artist, poet and social commentator who’s been rapping for over 10 years. He is from Africa and his favorite art form is rap. Because of his storytelling style of rap, Da MC has begun to diversify and is not only doing HipHop music but poetry as well. Da MC has performed at various places around Beijing including Vics Club, D-One Club, Salsa Caribe, Global Warehouse club, Appreciate Africa Network’s Pride of Africa Awards and Speech Contest.


This event is not only introducing Beijing’s first major instance of an organized Slam spanning two organizations. It will be the first instance of an organized Chinese Slam – with special workshops to mentor Chinese Slammers who will peform their slam pieces at the event. The workshops have FIVE PLACES and they are about to start going fast.

Zoe Xie

Slammers will learn about the criteria that Slams are judged on, from delivery, to difficulty to rapport with the crowd. Zoe Xie will work with Slam poets Okin and Hollie Montgomery from Spittoon’s Slam team to foster and grow a new kind of poetry performance in Beijing.

Performed for the first time at this event!

About Spittoon:

Spittoon is a platform that supports and sustains literary and artistic collaborations between the Chinese and the World. It organizes poetry and fiction reading nights, workshops, a music-poetry collaboration called Spit-Tunes, and the Spittoon Literary Magazine.



US natives Leroy Adams and Nayyir Shareef are the forces behind Beijing-born Edutainment brand BLK GEN, the city known Creative Events Planning & Consultancy Group utilizing the arts to spread enriching awareness of the displaced, disadvantaged and misrepresented African-Diaspora.

Founded in January of 2016, BLK GEN set off with one mission, to enrich to empower.

This to be accomplished thru events, initiatives, projects & other rich-works aligned with their aim utilizing the guiding principles of Creativity, Empowerment, Enrichment, Innovation and Sustainability. With impressionable influences gained from the stories of those living thru the ramifications of their history, including their own, met during world travels and using the qualitative commonalities behind the ills of social dynamics in modern culture as a compass for better sailing ahead ..grew their brand maxim, Engage to Enrich to Enspire. Along the way, BLK GEN has caught the attention of notable China media houses City Weekend Beijing, & The Beijinger among several other offshoots. Collaborations in events have also occurred with Peking University via the prestigious Yenching Academy as well as with other BLK-centric organizations to include a partnership series event with the Ambassador of Trinidad & Tobago. Laying the foundation for some serious ambitions in progressive race relations & a better world, BLK GEN sees opportunity everywhere. As an eclectic duo and institution they are now working to build strong partnerships with lesser known as well as many of your favorite household brands to deepen their efforts & further the reach around their mission.


Part 5, 27 of June:

Spittoon presents: Spittunes.

A Poetry and Music Collaboration – 27th June DDC.









Bands 乐队:

Liane Halton – Anthony Tao

Djang San and Band – Xiao Shui 肖水

Macondo – Simon Shieh

Dawei and Social Poets 大卫与社会诗歌 – Dawei 大卫

Spittoon is Beijing’s main stage for poetry and fiction writers, with reading nights taking place across the city and a bi-annual literary magazine that sells in outlets all over town. Spittoon has always been a platform for creativity and innovation, and we are very excited to introduce the next showcase of our exciting music and writing collaboration project –  Set to take place at DDC, June 27th 2018.

Spittoon 是北京诗人与小说作家最爱的平台,在城市的每个角落他们都举行过阅读之夜的活动,以及每两年一次出版刊有优秀作品的文学杂志。Spittoon 一直是创新与创造的舞台,我们非常兴奋地宣布下场音乐与文字合作项目的信息——将于2018年6月27日在 DDC 举行。

Spit-Tunes sets up a band or musical artist with a poet for collaboration on a special musical piece inspired by the poet’s poetry.  We have an amazing line up, with Liane Halton, Djang San and Band, Macondo, Dawei and Social Poets 大卫与社会诗歌 taking part – A vast array of musical styles that would suffice to be a brilliant gig alone except that now the bands will play a special collaboration song in their sets, complete with a small reading from each collaborating poet.

Spit-Tunes 寻求让音乐与诗人美妙的诗句相结合,演绎受到诗句启发的音乐。Liane Halton, Djang San and Band, Macondo, 大卫与社会诗歌都会参加到我们的精彩演出中。我们演绎过各种类型的音乐,它们完美地贴合与演绎着诗人的作品,除此之外,每首歌曲当中还拥有一场小小的朗读环节。

This is a project that brings Beijing’s music and literary scenes together in a hugely compelling way and we’re very lucky to have the best talents to bring it to life. Come to DDC on the 27th June to see the what our musicians and writers have cooked up.

此次演出中将会有北京最优秀的音乐与最棒的文学作品,我们也非常幸运请到数位诗人来参与到演出当中。让我们6月27日 DDC 见!


Simon Shieh

Simon Shieh is a poet and the Director of InkBeat Arts, an organization that empowers young people through artistic expression. He is the Editor in Chief of the Spittoon Literary Magazine and serves as the Writer in Residence at the International School of Beijing. Simon’s work appears or is forthcoming in Grist, Public Poetry, Anomaly, SOFTBLOW, Kartika Review, and CALAMITY, among others.

Simon Shieh 是一个诗人,同时也是InkBear Arts的策划人,致力于帮助年轻人进行他们的艺术表达。他同时也是 Spittoon 文学杂志的主编,北京国际学校的一名作家。Simon 的作品将会出现在 Grist, Public Poetry, Anomaly, SOFTBLOW, Kartika Review 和 CALAMITY 等平台上面。

Xiao Shui

肖水,1980年生于湖南郴州,先后就读于复旦大学法学院、中文系。曾任复旦诗社第二十七任社长,创办复旦诗歌节、复旦诗歌图书馆、复旦大学诗歌资料收藏中心。出版有诗集《失物认领》(2012)、《中文课》(台湾,2012)、《艾草:新绝句诗集》(2014)、《渤海故事集:小说诗诗集》(2016)、《渤海故事集》(中英文双语版,Noelle Noell 译,香港,2017)。合译布劳提根诗集《避孕药与春山矿难》、小说《在美国钓鳟鱼》(广西师范大学出版社,2018),主编《复旦诗选》(2013、2015、2016)。曾获未名诗歌奖、《上海文学》诗歌新人奖、诗探索奖•新锐奖、三月三诗会奖、第二届华语青年作家奖提名奖、第二届建安文学奖、第七届复旦诗歌特别贡献奖等。

Anthony Tao

Anthony Tao is a writer, editor, and cat owner in Beijing. His poetry has appeared in publications such as Prairie Schooner, Borderlands, Kartika Review, Cottonwood, Asian Cha, etc. (and Spittoon!). He is currently the Asia managing editor of the China news website, and captain of Beijing Ultimate Frisbee teams. Previously you might have seen him around The Bookworm coordinating the 9th and 10th editions of the Bookworm Literary Festival.

Anthony Tao 是一名作家,编辑,也在北京养了一只猫。他的诗歌经常出现在诸如 Prairie Schooner, Borderlands, Kartika Review, Cottonwood, Asian Cha 等平台上面(当然也包括 Spittoon)。现在他是 SupChina 中国新闻网的亚洲地区编辑,也是北京 Ultimate Frisbee 的队长。之前也许你曾在 Bookworm 举办的文学节上面见过他。

Dawei 大卫


Artists 表演家:


Macondo make some of the most interesting and exciting music coming out of Beijing today: instrumental rock with elements of math-core, infused with vibes drawn from 70s psychedelic music, adding the production and sound of today’s electronic music. Their unique music shifts from sounds that are ambient and heavy, spacious and dense to atmospheric but rhythmically driven. Bombastic drumming, layered with lush floating guitar textures and earth-shaking energetic bass attack, and otherworldly synthesiser sounds.

MACONDO 乐队做的是令人兴奋的音乐:受 70 年代迷幻摇滚启发,融合了器乐摇滚、后摇、数学摇滚和电子音乐。激扬的鼓点、飘渺复杂的吉他、极具攻 击性的贝斯,以及超然的合成器音效交织在一起,构建了其独特的音乐,在变 幻莫测的节奏驱动下,呈现某种氛围和空间感甚至心理压迫感。

Formed in 2014, the band quickly made a splash on the Beijing music scene, their live shows left audiences open-mouthed, describing it as ‘Volcano Rock’.
自2014年成立始,Macondo 迅猛袭击北京音乐现场,他们的演出往往令观众瞠目结舌,并被形容为 “火山摇滚” 。

Djang San and Band 张思安与乐队

Re-inventor of Chinese classical instrument zhongruan, philosopher, poet, composer, guitar hero, DJ, one man orchestra, music pioneer and explorer of new sounds, Djang San has been doing music in China since the year 2000. An artist with many faces, Djang San has also won the battle of the bands in Mainland China and Hong Kong against 100 bands in the year 2011.

Djang San has so far released 40 albums, the music styles of the albums range from Jazz to electro, rock, classical music, experimental music and more. The personality of Djang San takes many different shapes in his many different projects.

As a one man band, Djang San plays seven different instruments on stage including guitar, flutes, electronic devices and synthesizers.

Djang San + Band is an extension of Djang San, a trio based on an electric version of Chinese instrument zhongruan he has created himself. The band is now extending its playlist to all of Djang San’s 40 albums.



张思安原名让-塞巴斯蒂安·艾利,人们也叫他J.S.。J.S.于2000年踏上中国的土地。2010年,他以“保险超人乐队”参加了中国摇滚大赛 并在香港赢得冠军。他一直在电子和实验音乐领域孜孜不倦地探索。他的音乐很难归类。他也许是第一个用中阮作曲的外国人,也是第一位使用这一乐器演奏爵士乐的音乐家。

Liane Halton

Having completed a B. Mus. in Composition and Classical Guitar at Rhodes University in South Africa in 2012, Liane moves between contemporary world, classical and jazz styles. She is currently the bassist for the Surf band “Boss Cuts”, and composes for the classical guitar.

Liane Halton 于2012年在南非的 Rhodes 大学完成了作曲与古典吉他的学习,之后 Liane变在演奏中融合了现代、古典与爵士的风格。她现在是 Boss Cuts 乐队的贝斯手,同时也吉他进行作曲。

Dawei and Social Poets 大卫与社会诗歌

他获得过数不清的 Freestyle Battle 冠军头衔,他是崔健最喜欢的说唱歌手。大卫,绝对的疯逼一个。是武术老师,诗人,影像工作者,历史评论员,文化激进分子,疯狂说唱者。他像一个同时自我复制又自我反对的拄杖教父,在破布与华服、疲惫与矍铄的极端中,甩着双节棍肆意穿梭。

His music rhymes with violence, acme, affection, literature profoundness, and is full of dramatic tension. free-style rapping is one of his signature. Every time Da Wei’s on stage, he surges a poetic tsunami, sweeping the crowd and no one is left to dry.

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