April 2 2010 12:00 AM

Hip-hop meets slam poetry in Friday show

Detroit native
Black Milk will be performing at the “Born to Flow” event at Michigan State University,
providing a blend of hip-hop and slam poetry. Presented by Pop Entertainment, the
concert at 8 p.m. Friday, April 2 is a departure from other events the group
has put on.

“Other events we
put on have been electronic and rock,” said Adam Kokenakes, the president of
Pop Entertainment. “We’re trying to touch a lot of different genres to get a
feel for the student body, and we really wanted to do some hip-hop.”

Hip-hop producer
and MC Black Milk will be performing with a live drummer and keyboardist.

“He’s a fellow
Michigan person coming to share his craft with us,” Kokenakes said.

Also attending
is Jamaal “Versiz” May, a two-time Detroit Slam Champion, who will be helping
students work on their own slam poetry skills.

Slam poetry is a
type of competition poetry, Kokenakes said. Poets go head to head against one
another. He said the concert will encourage the direct and firm rhythm of slam
poetry without the competition.

There have been
a series of auditions in the MSU Union in which students win a chance to perform
their own poetry on the night of the event. During the day before the concert
begins, the selected students will sit down with May one-on-one and work on a
collaborative poem to perform.

“We’re working
with the MSU Slam Poetry Club and reaching out and allowing all and any
students to audition,” Kokenakes said.

He is excited
about this particular event due to this student participation and allowing them
to get personally involved.

“They get to
work with a professional poet and work with them in their own art,” he said.

The concert will
be held in the Erickson Kiva in Erickson Hall on-campus. Tickets are $5 for
students and $8 for non-students.