Nitty Gritty Slam #79 Featuring Crystal Valentine


Nitty Gritty Slam returns to The Low Beat on Tuesday, October 7 to continue Season Four with poetry and spoken word and a special featured reading from Crystal Valentine.

Born and raised in the Bronx, Crystal Valentine, age 19, has been writing poetry since she was in fourth grade. She is currently enrolled at NYU, and is a two-time member of the NYU poetry slam team, as well as NYU’s current Grand Slam Champ. She is also a member of the 2014 Urban Word slam team. She has performed at the New Amsterdam Theatre, the Apollo theater, and the Nuyorican’s Poet’s Cafe. ​Crystal believes in poetry’s ability to instill change in those who embrace it.

At the last slam, NGS 78, we saw new poets (Chris and Baron X) step up to the mic and make it on the points board with Poetyc Visionz taking the first place prize with Amani coming up 3/10 of point behind for her first time in the second place chair. L-Majesty came in third, but that was enough put him in the points lead after the first two slams of Season Four.

Now that we have a couple of slams under our belt and are getting comfortable in this new season, who will come out next and try to knock the leaders off their perch? Who is setting their sights on making the trip down to Newark, NJ next summer to represent Albany and NGS at the National Poetry Slam? We will find out on Ocotber 7 at NGS #79.

If you’re not into competing in the slam, but want to get on stage and share your work, we have an open mic hosted by Kevin Peterson before the slam. Sign up begins at 7:00pm, open mic starts at 7:30, and then Thom Francis starts the slam at 8:00pm. Admission is $5.00 ($3.00 with student ID). This is an 18+ show.

If you can’t make it out to the show that night, be sure to follow along on Twitter – @NittyGrittySlam and #NGS79.

Albany Poets, Urban Guerilla Theatre, and The Frequency North Reading Series have brought slam back to Albany with the Nitty Gritty Slam at The Low Beat (335 Central Ave.) on the 1st and 3rd Tuesday’s of each month.

For information on the rules and format of the Nitty Gritty Slam and to meet the team, go to