My name is Timothy Prolific Edwaujonte (formerly Veit Jones), and I am a Black Long Island Native. I am a poet, educator, organizer, and marketer whose creative work operates in the continuum of the Black Arts Movement. I use a multi-disciplinary approach rooted in Hip-Hop culture as an African Diasporic folkloric praxis. I create Afro-indigenous ethnographic narratives, which is a fancy way of saying that I tell the stories of my ancestors and my people. My artistic work, and my poetry in particular, are excavations of self and lineage, with the aim of leaving my unborn children, those I mentor, and my community the resources and stories I did not grow up with. They are my legacy, my contribution to Black excellence.
During my adolescence, I embarked on a spiritual journey with a pen, a pad, a cassette deck, and a village of physical and philosophical mentors and teachers. Over the past 15 years, I have written and performed poetry at a diverse variety of venues, ranging from The Nuyorican Poets Cafe and New York University to Riverside Church and Rikers Island.
I appeared regularly as a hip-hop culture critic on the MNet America show “Headliners,” have written for YRB Magazine, and co-hosted Sweet Success Sundaes on Bondfire Radio. I also manage the Queens-bred emcee, SoSoon, and co-produced his debut album, The Bandwagon: Director’s Cut.
My poetry has been published in African Voices, The Inquisitive Eater, Penmanship Books’ 30/30 Journal: 30 Poems in 30 Days, the graphic novel, Gunplay, and in The New School For Public Engagement’s award-winning literary journal, 12th Street, where I served as the Online Editor and eventually Editor-in-Chief, and am a poetry fellow at The Watering Hole Poetry.
I am the author of three collections of poetry: Prolific (out of print), Musaic | 40 Days, 40 Nights, and the forthcoming Water + Blood. I possess an uncanny ability to incorporate hip-hop into any discussion.
Poetry and hip-hop are fine art, and it is up to the stewards of the culture – artists, entrepreneurs, and marketers to articulate and deliver them in ways that reinforce their value. Being a creative allowed me to understand that artists are fortunate vessels for stories, concepts, and ideas. My goal is to honor purpose and vision by supporting independent artists through intelligent, honest, and effective marketing. Tactics vary according to budget, ranging from grassroots efforts to developing strategies that utilize a mix of earned and paid media.
Throughout my career, I gained a reputation amongst my peers for my ability to construct grassroots marketing, branding, and social media campaigns, and became a go-to consultant for numerous projects. Professionally, I worked at WiT Media as a marketing associate for two years, learning the ins and outs of arts/cultural/lifestyle marketing, advertising sales, and project management. Currently, I the Visioning Partner (VP) for Institutional Culture for Purpose Productions, an organization dedicated to supporting artists and organizers in the manifestation of PURPOSE-full work that seeks to unify and develop our world community.
In 2002, I joined the Blackout Arts Collective (BAC) as a volunteer, seeing an opportunity to use my art as a vehicle for social change. Eventually I would become the organization’s Assistant Program Coordinator, which gave me my first opportunity to work for a non-profit organization. As a BAC member, I curated artist showcases, co-facilitated workshops, and taught in after school writing and political education programs. In 2004, I participated in the 3rd annual Lyrics on Lockdown tour, where I performed and facilitated workshops around the issue of mass incarceration. After 7 years with the organization, I joined the board of directors, and served as co-chair until 2010. In 2009, my former independent book publishing company, Andre Maurice Press, published One Mic: A Lyrics on Lockdown Anthology, in collaboration with Blackout Arts Collective, Rikers Island Academy, New York University, Columbia University, and The New School.