When he executes as an artist, as a poet, and as a man, he gives his poetic testimonies. He loves to write. It’s fun but deep for him at this point and time in his life. This is way deeper than just writing poetry for fun or creating for fun. It’s literally a ministry. It is a purposely driven mission. Everything he writes and performs is his STORY, his TRUTH………. It MUST be.
He was born on the East coast in Sharon, Pennsylvania on a military base. His father was in the Army, and his mother, a native of Sacramento raised Chris in South Sacramento, where he attended Valley High School and ITT TECH. The East coast is where his father’s side of the family resides. Chris gives clarity on the battle growing up having the name Coon ; “First and far most, kids are cruel, they don’t know the social aspects of it, or they would say Raccoon, just being kids. I didn’t even know the definition of the word. As a kid I didn’t like my last name only because it was easy to make fun of in so many different ways.”
As he began to grow and mature, he learned the history of his family and how much they fought to uphold the honor of the name Coon. His great-great grandfather was approached by the family to change the spelling of the name. His great-great grandfather and his grandfather didn’t agree and carried on the original spelling. Some family spell it “Coons”, some” Koon”. Instead, to honor their name, they joined forces and decided they would produce a family of more high regard. They educated themselves, and added a title to the Coon name and became Dr. Coon & Rev. Coon. The women in the family hyphenate their names when they marry because “The name or the word, didn’t make us, we made the NAME”.
Deeper than that, he still upholds the Coon name because he knows it’s time to make some changes. It’s time to shine some light and time to let some things go. And NOT teach some things to the younger generation. He works with them, he teaches spoken word and poetry. He mentors and is an educator in Twin River School District. He’s currently working on a unique project with artist Milton Bowens in Oakland, who grew up with Tupac . They’re starting a revolution to put Arts back in the schools called “I Too Grow From Concrete”. Based on the works of Langston Hughes
“I Too Sing America” and Tupac Shakur’s “The Rose The Grew From Concrete”. Teaching the youth through writing poetry and spoken word. Teaching them coping mechanisms through art.Chris is a powerful poet. He considers himself a “line crosser” and embraces being able to go into someone else’s world and dancing in it or bringing his world to theirs. He loves performing in shows that are primarily music. It’s a whole new audience and it gives the listener a chance to learn something new and it gives him a chance to be free. ” When you’re around just your own, they see you differently and they listen to you differently”, Chris explains.
Chris was a part of a duo spoken word team with Lorenzo McNeil (E-Legal) and has only been on his own for the past 4 years. In 2014 he was celebrated as the Best Male Spoken Word Artist in Sacramento.His Journey……
With the support from his family and friends, Chris hit 30 stages from Sacramento to the East Coast performing featured shows and more just stopping at different venues and building relationships. He spent a week in Chicago where he was welcomed by Kottyn Campbell, an award winning poet author and radio host. She took him and took care of him and even got 4 shows lined up for him while on his visit. He has 2 books of “Bread Crumbs”, that laid out his life chronologically from his teenage years to current . His book travels with him as a reminder to stay humble, where he comes from, and where he’s going because he knew in his journey there would be some hard times. His book is a must see and it is an inspiration for up and coming Spoken Word artists and poets. He’s been asked many times by poetry lovers to write on specific topics but if it’s not what God lead him to do, he won’t write about it just yet. It has to be in correlation with his heart.
Surprisingly, Chris has a love for Superheroes’. Between his performing, writing, and teaching he enjoys watching cartoons. That’s his peace when he needs to wind down. He’s as powerful as a superhero himself. His affect before he even gets on stage is groundbreaking, insightful, and intimate. He reminds us that in this vast universe, love’s the truth. He has a collection of poems that move you emotionally. He’s a poet that writes out of an exuberant LOVE.
Coon The Poet’s gallery
CLICK ON IMAGE FOR LARGER VIEW