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If you love hip-hop, you’ll love ‘Poets and Pioneers’ hosted by the Peoples Army at D’Gaf

Richard Sudan

1385299 536137849797125 472854853 n 300x300 If you love hip hop, you’ll love ‘Poets and Pioneers’ hosted by the Peoples Army at D’GafThere’s a very special venue in east London, holding a unique event every month that is a must attend for all the hip-hop heads out there. About five minutes walk from Stratford station you can find the hood famous and world famous D’Gaf, a stunning venue which gets 10 out of 10 for originality, ethos, and atmosphere.

It’s a creative hub which is where, on the first Saturday of every month, the Peoples Army and others are hosting the event ‘Poets And Pioneers’, a night of inspirational rappers, poets, and speakers of any form of expression, a platform where artists of all descriptions showcase their skills and talent.

In fact D’Gaf offers a unique and revolutionary backdrop from the moment as you walk through the door as the walls are adorned with pictures of MCs, poets, rappers, and many others who have at one time or another graced the famous stage.

If you look carefully you’ll see many artist photos including one or two universally respected artists like Immortal Technique, and Lowkey but of course, countless others too. Stepping back, it’s like looking at a collage of real lyricists, a million different poets and speakers – that’s the effect for me anyway.

You can watch a discussion with Immortal Technique at D’Gaf, in which he engages with a largely young audience, encourages and offers them some poignant words of wisdom, and practical advice – something our politicians and other so-called leaders should take note of.

D’Gaf place has a distinct renaissance feel, and last month saw the launch of ‘Poets and Pioneers’, a conscious acoustic night with various acts including Renee Soul, Big Cakes, and many other speakers and artists taking the stage making for an overly memorable night. It is a self described pub with passion and bar without booze. While the bar and interior remain pub styled and very much alive, in keeping with the spirit of what the place was intended for, you’ll find healthier options at the bar.

Logic and Raja Saddiq Khan who inspired this hip-hop renaissance just down the road from the Olympic Stadium, firmly believe that with the right foundation, it’s possible to have a positive  impact on the community through business by reaching out to those who want to get their voices heard and who are trying to get a message out.

“’Poets and Pioneers’ capture a sentiment that the mainstream media often overlooks or is unable to cover. People are tired of listening to and experiencing the same propaganda each day, which is not reflecting peoples day-to-day struggles in a world where personal freedom and constitutional rights are violated not by ‘international terrorism’ but by public policy and officials. Pioneers come in many shapes and forms and we regard Poets as Pioneers and Pioneers as Poets. D’Gaf is perfectly aligned to house, such conversation in the context of the rules on our door which are: Come from Love, Show some Respect, Stand for Justice and Be at Peace.”

At a time when we are subject to a never ending stream of 24 hour news bulletins, which at times provide as many distractions as they do information, there’s a distinct feeling that soon the tradition of spoken word storytelling will become more necessary than ever. Maybe it starts here.

Change rarely comes from the top down but begins with grassroots initiatives like this one.

The next evening of Poets and Pioneers is on the 2 November

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  • Benjamin Whitton

    people’s army on the march… salute


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