Ever since I moved to the UK and begin performing and researching spoken word poetry, one of my favourite podcasts has been the Lunar Poetry Podcast. Founded in 2014 by David Turner, the LPP features conversations with and performances from a wide range of UK-based poets, focusing on creative practice and various issues in the scene. As I’ve discussed on this blog before, the critical discourse regarding UK spoken word poetry—and alternative, innovative poetic styles more generally in this scene—has been relatively underdeveloped. LPP has been a shining exception to this trend, celebrating the diversity and creative strength of our scene through showcasing in-depth discussions and high-quality poems.
And one of the best aspects of LPP is its accessibility: every episode is fully transcribed and freely available to read/download through their website. This is so helpful not only for increasing access to as many people as possible but also for ensuring it’s easy for researchers to review and cite. I relied upon several LPP episodes in writing my PhD, and I’m so grateful for the work that the team behind LPP has done to make this podcast not only interesting and relevant but also accessible.
All of this to say: I was over the moon when I was asked to feature as the first guest for the new series of the LPP! After five years of fantastic work, David Turner has passed the reins to the Repeat Beat Poet, Peter DeGraft-Johnson. I’ve known PJ for years now and have so much respect for all of the work he does in the UK poetry and music scenes, both as a writer and performer and as a broadcaster and host. When PJ invited me to feature on his first episode hosting the LPP, I was deeply honoured.
Our episode was just released today! We chat about several interlinking issues, including my research into the preoccupation with authenticity in the UK spoken word scene and the rash of ill-informed articles panning our scene which have unfortunately popped up in the last couple of years. I also share three poems. To listen, search for ‘Lunar Poetry Podcast’ in your favourite podcast platform (Apple, Spotify, Acast, Soundcloud, Stitcher, etc.) or follow the links on this page.
Please do subscribe to the LPP to get their latest episodes as they come out, and definitely check out their back catalogue of episodes – each conversation carries so much wisdom and talent. Thanks, all! —K