The Kamau Brathwaite Remix Engine YouTube channel has been celebrating Caribbean legend Kamau Brathwaite since it was set up on May 8, 2020.
Kamau Brathwaite, who was born in Barbados and lived all over the world including a stint in Ghana, was widely considered one of the major voices in the Caribbean literary canon. Starting with his first published work Four Plays for Primary Schools (1964), he went on to produce dozens of collections of poetry and important academic work. Some of his most recognised titles were Jamaica Poetry (1979), Barbados Poetry (1979), Sun Poem (1982), Afternoon of the Status Crow (1982), Gods of the Middle Passage (1982), and Third World Poems (1983).
Some of the awards for his work include the Neustadt International Prize for Literature 1994, Charity Randall Citation for Performance and Written Poetry from International Poetry Forum 1999, Griffin Poetry Prize 2006, Robert Frost Medal from Poetry Society of America 2015, and the PEN/Voelcker Award for Poetry 2018.
Kamau Brathwaite passed away in 2020 and his community took a different method to celebrate the legend as they organized the #40nightsofthevoice. This event hosted by @kamauremix set up the YouTube channel “Kamau Brathwaite Remix Engine” had writers and poets read work by or work dedicated to the new literary ancestor. Some of the people who took part in the exercise were Kwame Dawes, Kei Miller, Ngugi Wa Thiong’o, Linton Kwesi Johnson, Opal Palmer Adisa, Dionne Brand, John Robert Lee, Lasana M Sekou, Oliver Senior, Merle Collins, Malika Booker, Afua Cooper, and many more. Here are some of our favourite readings on the YouTube Channel.
While you would imagine that it was the end of the channel it seems that it now has a new lease of life that is welcomed. In June, they had Kenneth Ramchand discussing Kamau Brathwaite’s poetry and hopefully we shall see more going forward.
Please go and subscribe to the channel if you can; I’m sure they will be encouraged to produce even more Kamau Braithwaite related content. Also consider following Kamau Remix who are the driving force of the channel.