BUDDY WAKEFIELD is the two-time Individual World Poetry Slam Champion featured on NPR, the BBC, HBO’s Def Poetry Jam, and most recently signed to Strange Famous Records. In 2004 he won the Individual World Poetry Slam Finals thanks to the support of anthropologist and producer Norman Lear then successfully defended that title at the International Poetry Festival in Rotterdam, Netherlands against the national champions of seven European countries with works translated into Dutch.
In 2005 he won the Individual World Poetry Slam Championship title again and has gone on to share the stage with nearly every notable performance poet in the world including Saul Williams, Sage Francis, Alix Olsen, Derrick Brown and Utah Phillips in hundreds of venues internationally from Comedy Central’s Hudson Theater and Scotland’s Oran Moore to San Quentin State Penitentiary, House of Blues (New Orleans) and CBGB’s.
In the spring of 2001 Buddy left his position as the executive assistant at a biomedical firm in Gig Harbor, WA, sold or gave away all he owned, moved into the small town of Honda Civic, and set out to live for a living, touring every major poetry venue in North America through 2003. He still tours full time while co-managing The Bullhorn Collective (a talent agency founded by Wakefield, made up of 30+ of the most accomplished performance poets alive), and considers his recent tours with Ani DiFranco the highlight of his career thus far.
Born in Shreveport, LA, mostly raised in Baytown, TX, now claiming Seattle, WA as home, Buddy has been a busker in Amsterdam, a lumberjack in Norway, a street vendor in Spain, a team leader in Singapore, a re-delivery boy, a candy maker, a street sweeper, a bartender, a maid, a construction worker, manager of a CD store, a bull rider and a booking agent. Wakefield is a growth junkie, an expert witness to the moon, avid player of marbles in the trees, elated son of a guitar repair woman, wingman of Giant Saint Everything, is void of S.T.D.’s, and remains generally hopeful for his health despite an abusive relationship with free range pastry buffets.
Buddy, a Board of Directors member with Youth Speaks Seattle and member of Team Seattle 2006 for the National Poetry Slam Finals is honored that his work is published internationally and has been used to win national collegiate forensics competitions. Also a member of Solomon Sparrow’s Electric Whale Revival, Buddy is known for delivering raw, rounded, high vibration performances of humor and heart.