The Guild Literary Complex and Columbia College Creative Writing Department are pleased to celebrate the life of David Hernandez in this one-of-a-kind event in conjunction with Story Week 2014:
“Street Sounds take music, lyrics and song a stimulating step further.” – Chicago Sun Times
Chicago’s “unofficial Poet Laureate,” David Hernandez (1946-2013) impressed audiences everywhere with his singular poetic style. Centering his work on the rhythms of urban life, Hernandez captured universal themes inside a humorous and resonating voice. As the first Puerto Rican poet to be published in Chicago, Hernandez was a significant member of the region’s literary, artistic and cultural community through his role as a poet, educator, administrator, events organizer, and performer.
A founding member of the Latino Arts Movement, he received the Puerto Rican Cultural Heritage Award 2002. Hernandez maintained his position as master artist through his commitments as a board member, editor, panelist, and teacher. Born in Puerto Rico, Hernandez grew up in Chicago, published seven collections of poetry and edited others, was a visiting professor at DePaul University, and read poetry for the inauguration of Mayor Harold Washington, among other career highlights. Most recently, he was Poet-in-Residence at the A.N. Pritzker School in Wicker Park.
In 1971, Hernandez and guitarist Dean Karabatsos co-founded Street Sounds, an award-winning performance ensemble of music, songs and poems. The group uses original music and lyrics with Latin Jazz, Blues, Contemporary Jazz, Afro-Caribbean, Folk, Classical and Cover tune elements. Playing with the band during Literary Rock & Roll will be a wealth of Chicago-based musicians. Original poems by David Hernandez will be performed by Eduardo Arocho, Marta Collazo, Carlos Cumpián.