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  • Writer's pictureSimply Sherri

From Behind the Microphone: 1EclecticHeart

One of the definitions of the word “eclectic” is “not following one system, as of philosophy, medicine, etc. but selecting and using what are considered the best elements of all systems.” No other word in the dictionary can clearly define the artist known as 1EclecticHeart. In her taste in food, movies, music and all art forms she embraces it all, keeps what she needs and discards what she doesn’t. She is one of those people that have always seemed to have been in my life; it has taken me a minute to remember when we first met. I actually called to ask her; she can’t remember either—a fact that had us both laughing! We have known each other for a little over a year, a fact that surprised another poet friend of ours as we are close like sisters.

Her quiet demeanor and guarded performance style truly disguise the power in the poetry she writes. She writes about the good and bad side of growing up in Washington, DC, best captured in her poem “17th Street.” Her love poems stand alone in a world that no longer believes in love.

She has created several venues for musicians and poets to shine, including Soulspire, 1EcleticHeart of Music and 1EcleticHeart of Words. In March of 2014, she presented Kelilah “Butterfly’Free” Washington with a spotlight at 1EcleticHeart of Words.

Kelilah on 1EclecticHeart:

She’s someone of whom you would want to know where her secret lies. There is such a mysterious thing about her, like she tells

From left to right, 1EcleticHeart, Kelilah Washington and Turtleberry

From left to right, 1EcleticHeart, Kelilah Washington and Turtleberry

you just enough but you just can’t help but want to know more. She is a gift from the man upstairs to me wrapped up in a sundress and a smile; she is just truly beautiful. When I first met her, it all started with a hug. She just seems so genuine and real and true to whom she really is. She became an inspiration for me, her being a full time mom and a caretaker to her mother (may God rest her soul) when her mother was sick—and all this being an only child. I don’t know how she did it, and did it all through metro! We have people who won’t even get up and walk across the street to fill out an application at a McDonald’s to make a difference in their life, and here she is with her little petite frame hustling through the streets, carrying all her invisible luggage to a poetry event and reading poems that just touch your heart to your core. I don’t really want to know where that drive in her comes from to just keep going, and pushing, and living and not just existing. She is the definition of “Harlem Sweeties” by Langston Hughes but with Washington D.C flavor. I truly love her dearly. *Selah*

Christopher “Poetryzchild” Thomas, a fellow poet and host, shares Kelilah’s respect for 1EclecticHeart:

Strong, courageous and determined are three words I have always used to describe her. Her reserved nature coupled with her ferocious drive to achieve her goals and to be an inspiration to those who lives she touches has made her the beautiful queen she is today.

She quietly supports all of us she believes in, as we try to push her to share her work more often. We love hearing her unique voice!

Stepping from Behind the Microphone: 1Eclecticheart

Photo Credit: Michelle Antionette

Photo Credit: Michelle Antoinette

Sherri: Tell us more about what brought you to writing poetry.

1EH: Life and Death. I had to write out toxins and write in vaccines, antidotes and cures. I had to learn how to speak to my universe.

Sherri: Tell the story of your first experience performing.

1EH: The first time I decided to share was at DC Soundstage at Soul Sessions. I took my shoes off so I wouldn’t fall, didn’t speak into the mic and didn’t look up. In fact, one of your features was my knight in poetic armor. Yes! Twist walked up and held the mic for me. Later pics would show me leaning on him for support. <Lol>

Sherri: Your stage name is 1EclecticHeart. Why did you choose that name?

1EH: I love so many different aspects of art. It became, “What do you want the audience to know about you when they hear it?”

Sherri: Who is your favorite writer?

1EH: No comment. <Lol> I can’t choose ONE!

Sherri: You have one hour to have a conversation with anyone living or deceased. Who would you choose? What would you want to ask them?

1EH: My first thought would be my grandfather or my mom. Also, I would ask God, “What can I do?”

Sherri: Your perfect concert: who are three acts, living or dead, you would like to see perform?

1EH: Leontyne Price, Jimmy Hendrix, and Mahalia Jackson. I also declare this an unfair question! <Folding arms and pouting in protest> I only answered because I didn’t answer the other question. <Lol>

Sherri: Tells us something about yourself that most people don’t know

1EH: I have a genetic disorder called neurofibromatosis. Neurofibromatosis, also known as NF, is a genetically inherited disorder of the nervous system (brain and spinal cord) which mainly affects the development of nerve (neural) cell tissues, causing tumors (neurofibromas) to develop on nerves, and may cause other abnormalities. It makes me very self-conscience.

Sherri: Do you have another creative outlet? If not, what is something you have always wanted to learn how to do?

1EH: I do a lot a little. I want to be a better writer, I am teaching myself to draw and paint, I love taking photographs. I would like to learn photography not to be a professional photographer but because it’s the easiest way to relive a moment. And I always see great moments.

Sherri: [Borrowed from Inside the Actor’s Studio] If heaven exists, what do you want to hear God say when you arrive at the pearly gates?

1EH: You reached one.

1EclecticHeart has an upcoming feature:

Saturday, December 13, 2014: Heard Through the Grapevine: Autumn Harvest, at the Soulful Emergence Art Gallery 2107 N. Charles Street, Baltimore, MD 21218.

Regular admission: $10.00; VIP admission: $20.00.

Saturday, December 13, 2014: Heard Through the Grapevine: Autumn Harvest, at the Soulful Emergence Art Gallery 2107 N. Charles Street, Baltimore, MD.  Regular admission $10.00, VIP admission $20.00

Saturday, December 13, 2014: Heard Through the Grapevine: Autumn Harvest, at the Soulful Emergence Art Gallery 2107 N. Charles Street, Baltimore, MD. Regular admission $10.00, VIP admission $20.00

For more information on 1EclecticHeart’s upcoming events please follow her on Facebook.  

If you would like to ask 1EclecticHeart a question, feel free to leave a comment.

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