professornana (professornana) wrote,

poetry and hip hop: match made in poem heaven

Nikki Giovanni is no stranger to rhythm and rhyme. In this companion book to POETRY SPEAKS TO CHILDREN, Giovanni offers readers (and listeners via the enclosed CD) the strong connection between poetry and hip hop. Five illustrators offer their different takes on poems from a wide range of writers from Langston Hughes and James Berry to Charles Smith and Maya Angelou and so many others. These poems sit side by side with cuts from Queen Latifah, the Sugarhill Gang, and Young MC to name a few of the hip hop artists.

I adored listening to Nikki Giovanni's "narration" as she provides background to some of the musical and poetry selections. This book is part history (hearing Oscar Brown sing a song I thought was by Rikki Lee Jones and now understand she did a cover a few years ago), part documentary (listening to Langston Hughes read his Dream Boogie, wow), and totally something classrooms need if they are to show kids that poetry is part and parcel of their lives, especially through music.

The book ships October 7, 2008, from Sourcebook, Inc.
Tags: hip hop speaks to children, nikki giovanni, poetry
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