Twenty two-year-old spoken word artist Jasmine “Jazz” Hudson has been rocking East Bay mics since the eighth grade. From her first writer’s workshop at the West Oakland Library—where her father sent her to “curb that mouth of hers”—she has performed everywhere from the streets of Oakland and Richmond to the national stage, often with her three-year-old son Nassor at her side.
Born in Oakland, Hudson grew up in a four-bedroom house in Fairfield with her father and step mom. But at 12, she said, her father took her back to Oakland, and her world turned upside down. She cycled through six foster homes, 10 group homes, boyfriends’ houses, and a total of 15 schools.
Today she’s a renaissance mom: She works full time at the RYSE Center in Richmond, goes to community college at the College of Alameda, takes care of her son, and still has the energy to perform, write, teach youth poetry workshops, and act in independent films.
She recently finished a chapbook, “Small Minds Say Small Things.”