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Thursday, March 29, 2012

“Artistically Speaking!" April 4th (BELLEVILLE)

 “Artistically Speaking!" April 4th (BELLEVILLE)

by: Susan Spit-Fire - MetroEast NEWS
 Hello people!!  I hope your spring is going well! Looking for a new show to check out? Come to “Artistically Speaking!” (produced/hosted by Spit-Fire) on Wed., April 4th at Belleville’s gorgeous Seven Restaurant and Lounge, (7 S. High St., Belleville, IL, 62220). Seven, a haven for arts and entertainment, is located in the heart of historic downtown Belleville, IL. To learn more, please call (618) 277-6700 or visit their website at

There’s no cover charge for this event!! The doors open at 8:00 and the show, which also features an Open Mic, will begin at 9:00. Experience the thrill of live performance-based art with extraordinary musicians, poets, comedians, and more in a second floor gallery filled with exquisite local artwork. The dedicated staff even keeps the kitchen open late so you can enjoy mouth-watering appetizers ($2.00 Off All Appetizers) and beverages. We have a stellar show planned for next Wed., April 4th! Our Special Guests include poet and spoken word artist Jay “Love” Watford (St. Louis, MO), classical swing band Antique Swing (Alton, IL), poet and producer Kristin Sharp (St. Louis, MO), and vocalist and songwriter Tabitha Yancey (Belleville, IL).  (See bios and attached flier below). It’s going to be another great night!! Hope to see you there!    

Jay Love

                Gifted young poet, writer, and spoken word artist Jay “Love” Watford has been writing for about five years. Recently he took to the stage for the first time, debuting his gripping brand of spoken word at Mocha Latte’s hit show “Got Lyrics?” in St. Louis. He has also graced the stages of Legacy Books & Café, The Inspot, Broadway Night Club, The Focal Point, and Forest Park Community College. Passionate about love, poetry, and sports as well, this twenty-three year old former college athlete originally planned on becoming a sports writer.

Greatly influenced by local spoken word artists like Louis Conphliction, Kristy “Lightning” McKeown, and Evan “Copasetic Soul” Hillard, Watford studies the artists he hears, using what he learns to carefully hone his art to a fever pitch of perfection. Already taking the poetry world by storm, Jay Love recently attended the “Saint Louis Poetry Slam!” for the first time, where he took first place with his electric spoken word performances.

Antique Swing

Based in Alton, IL, Antique Swing is composed of J. Thomas Crammond, Jim Drennan, and Terry Muskopf. The band specializes in classic Swing music, and hearing them live is always a highly enjoyable experience. Mr. Crammond, known as Tom, is an expert guitar player, and Jim backs him up perfectly on rhythm guitar, with newest member Terry jamming on Bass. Peoria native Crammond is a distinguished musician, songwriter, and educator who has been performing professionally for well over forty years. Tom attended Southern Illinois University – Edwardsville, where he obtained a degree in Music (Jazz Performance – Guitar). After graduating, he went on to teach Music, Music Theory, and Guitar to college and grad school students.

  Terry Muskopf also has over forty years of playing and teaching experience and has been in numerous rock and country bands since the 1970's. Jim Drennan began playing guitar in 1981 with Tom as his instructor and has been teaching and playing ever since. In 1988, he was the recipient of a performance scholarship from Lewis and Clark Community college. In 2010, Jim approached Tom about creating a Jazz guitar duo that would recreate a sound reminiscent of the 1930's and 1940's. Antique Swing applies the vintage sound of musicians like gypsy Jazz legend Django Reinhardt to many Jazz, Bossa Nova, and Blues tunes of the 30's and 40's. Equipped with a traditional sound and a timeless collection of songs, Antique Swing plays music that will take you back to a time when music was simple and elegant.

Kristin Sharp

Kristin M. Sharp is an accomplished poet, emcee, producer, event organizer, and activist from St. Louis, Mo. She was the mind behind the iconic show “Voices From The Underground” at The Atomic Cowboy (Hosted by Sean Arnold), and is the Producer of “Poems, Prose, and Pint’s”, which goes down the first Tuesday of the month at Dressel’s Public House (owned by long-time friend and mentor Welsh Poet Jon Dressel). Last fall Sharp was also the main organizer for “100 Thousand Poets for Change – Joining the Global Voice” at the Regional Arts Commission.

 Kristin’s literary body of work is poignant, fiery, and intellectual, and she is never afraid to take a stand on the important issues in life that affect us all. She is active in the social and artistic communities and is always seeking to bring people together. Her work has been published in “Bad Shoe” (Vol. 1) and the VSA Arts of Missouri Anthology “Where We Can Read The Wind”. Kristin has performed at The Cigar Inn, Dressel’s, The Atomic Cowboy, and many other regional venues. She currently resides in the Central West End with her husband Robert.

Tabitha Yancey

Belleville native Tabitha Yancey is an immensely talented new R&B/Neosoul singer and songwriter. Seeing her perform live is truly a great privilege; her sultry and powerful voice and songwriting prowess are amazing. After attending Belleville East High School and graduating from the University of Missouri – St. Louis with a degree in Business Administration-Finance, Yancey went to work for Scottrade. In her spare time this outgoing artist enjoys watching football, basketball, and baseball, and also loves reading and working out. Her musical influences include Gospel, Jazz, Neosoul, and Old School R&B.

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