Years ago, Steve and I walked into a candy store for a sack of chocolate. One of the original students at Youth Speaks Seattle, Mary, a beam of light, was behind the counter.
A couple years earlier Mary opened a show in Seattle and accompanied me on a new piece I’d written called Hurling Crowbirds at Mockingbirds. Nailed it.
When I tried to pay for the chocolate, Mary pushed my hand back, “Poets don’t pay for candy here.” Months later I was scrolling through news and saw @marylambertsing on the MTV Music Awards performing “Same Love” with Macklemore and Jennifer Hudson— “Hey Steve, come in here. Remember Mary, who gave us all the free chocolate on Capitol Hill? That’s her singing the chorus on ‘Same Love.'” She wrote it.
Not long after that we saw her on the Grammy Awards with Madonna and Queen Latifah.
Then it was me who got to way not-humbly whatsoever open for Mary for the first couple shows after she was with Macklemore again in front of 80,000 people at the Rugby Final in Sydney amid Australia’s same-sex marriage vote.
On June 2nd, I’ll host Mary’s show kicking off the Heavy Hitters Festival with a performance, a workshop, and a Q&A. She’s one of over 30 spoken word legends who’ll be performing and interacting hands-on with fans throughout the summer. Festival pass link in bio.