Tonight the Echo Chamber presented the annual “Word Beat I Powa” dub poetry, other poetry, and spoken word special as part of National Poetry Month. Of course, it was dub poetry that set the foundation of the show. Among the dub poets featured were Oku Onoura, Mutabaruka, Ras Takura, Jean Binta Breeze, Benjamin Zephaniah, Tomlin Ellis, Malachi Smith, Glenville Bryan, Jazzmin Tutum, Lillian Allen, Desmond Faada Johnson, Lady Dawn, and of course, the incomparable Linton Kwesi Johnson. Other pieces of dub poetry included the excellent track “Dilly Dally” from Everton Sylvester and the Brooklyn Funk Essentials, and “Spirit Made Flesh” from Dub Gabriel and Karen Gibson. But there was much more than dub poetry… From the Beat camp we had Jack Kerouac, and The Last Poets contributed the gritty “True Blues”. Other voices included Jah Wobble and Ronnie Drew doing “London Rain” from the “Celtic Poets” album; Ken Nordine’s unique “word jazz’; the “Hashish Poem” from Bill Laswell and Nicole Blackman; and the powerful words and music of Liberian born (and KFAI’s own) poet, e.g. bailey. Ahh, but let us not forget the extraordinary Jamaican DJs. Before there was dub poetry as we know it today, there was already the great tradition of Jamaican “toasters” — and we included King Stitt and I-Roy. Heck, we even included some classic Stiller & Meara comedy, and “Jack the Biscuit” from late Andy Fairley. What an eclectic mix of words…and beats…and Powa!