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Buddy Wakefield


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Buddy Wakefield (born June 4, 1974 ) is an American performance poet/slam poet. He is a three-time poetry slam world champion[1] [2] and the most toured performance poet in history.[9] His works have been released by Strange Famous Records (CD), Righteous Babe Records (CD), and Write Bloody Publishing (books). He has lived in Sanborn, New YorkBaytown, TexasSeattle, Washington, and currently calls Los Angeles, California, home.

Buddy Wakefield (born Kenneth Zane Beasley III) was born in Shreveport, Louisiana[3], then raised in Sanborn, New York and Baytown, Texas. He was adopted by a stepfather in 1980 and became Buddy Marshall Stevens, before finally settling on Buddy Wakefield. After eighteen years of no contact with the man who adopted him, Buddy chose his own last name. Wakefield, now Buddy’s legal last name, was pulled in-the-moment from the Weezer song, My Name is Jonas. Buddy thought the second half of the song began “My name is Wakefield. I’ve got a box full of your toys.” It turns out that Weezer’s guitarist, who wrote the song, was not saying Wakefield. He was saying Wepeel, the name of the guitarist’s sled from childhood.

In 2001, Buddy left his position as the executive assistant at a biomedical firm[4] in Gig HarborWashington, sold or gave away everything he owned, and moved into a Honda Civic to tour North American poetry venues.[5]

In 2004, and again in 2005, Buddy Wakefield won the Individual World Poetry Slam Championship title, becoming the first poet to win the title two consecutive years.[6] Wakefield has been a member of several poetry slam teams, including Team Long Beach in 2002, and Team Seattle in 2006 and 2007.

Wakefield, who now lives in Los Angeles, California, pursuing acting and screenwriting for both television and film, continues to make a living through poetry and performance. In addition to touring the world solo, Wakefield has also been a core member of several traveling poetry groups, including 2007’s Solomon Sparrow’s Electric Whale Revival, 2008’s Junkyard Ghost Revival, 2009’s Elephant Engine High Dive Revival and 2010’s Night Kite Revival, where he shared the stage with poets such as Derrick BrownAnis MojganiAndrea Gibson and Cristin O’Keefe Aptowicz, among others.[7] As of 2019, Wakefield has performed in every state in the U.S. except North Dakota. On purpose.

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