05-31-19 | Songs for Listening | Dasan Ahanu
Christopher Massenburg, better known as Dasan Ahanu, picked tunes for Friday, May 31 at Songs for Listening. Dasan is a public speaker, organizer, workshop facilitator, poet, spoken word performer, educator, songwriter, writer, emcee, and loyal hip-hop head born and raised in Raleigh, NC. As an active participant in poetry slam, Dasan has competed regionally & nationally as a founding member and coach of Durham's Bull City Slam Team. In 2010 and 2014, Dasan led the Bull City Slam Team in winning the Southern Fried Southeastern Regional Poetry Slam, the largest regional poetry slam in the country. He also led the team to a 3rd place finish at the 2010 National Poetry Slam and a 2nd place finish in Group Piece Finals at the 2012 National Poetry Slam.
Believing that “with great talent comes great responsibility,” Dasan has also used his skill and resources to aid in developing the community and further social change. In 2004, he was awarded an Indy Arts Award by Indy Week for his work in arts and activism. Then in 2015, he was awarded the honor again — the first two-time winner in the Indy's history.
Dasan's work has been featured on NPR in recurring appearances on News and Notes with Ed Gordon and WUNC's The State of Things. Dasan has released three full-length books of poetry: The Innovator, Freedom Papers, and Everything Worth Fighting For: An Exploration of Being Black in America and toured behind his last two spoken word albums: The Darkest Eye and Catharsis; his forthcoming album, The Last Temptation Before Sunrise, will be out soon.
Dasan is a member of Black Jedi Zulu, a non-profit community organization that seeks to serve the community while also fostering greater cultural awareness of hip-hop. He was awarded a 2015/16 Nasir Jones Fellowship w/ the Hip-Hop Archives at Harvard University’s Hutchins Center for African & African American Research. Currently, Dasan is a visiting professor at UNC Chapel Hill teaching courses on hip-hop and Black culture.
'Insanity' by Gregory Porter & Lalah Hathaway from 'Take Me To The Alley'
'Beneath Your Beautiful' by Labrinth & Emeli Sandé
'The Man' by Omar
'Beauty in The Dark (Groove With You) by Mos Def & The Isley Brothers from 'The Isley Brothers: Taken to the Next Phase'
'Travel Light' by CharlieRED from 'Muse.'
'Zoom' by The Commodores