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After Nearly Five Years, Hip-Hop Showcase Ends Its Run

bondfire2EMA Photography/Elizabeth Allen. TastyKeish and Bronx Uber Villain

For almost five years, Bondfire has served as a monthly family reunion for New York’s hip-hop scene, but the open mic will end its run tomorrow night at the Bowery Poetry Club.

After starting the event in 2007, musician Ausar Paumam’ki handed the reigns to current co-host Tony Walker, a veteran of hip-hop open mic circuits better know as The Bronx Über Villain. “We made Bondfire warm,” said Mr. Walker. “An inviting, but still no nonsense place where one takes pride in being on our stage. We’re actually a listening, encouraging, true community.”

Co-host TastyKeish (born Keisha Datés) was asked to become a permanent fixture after hosting the first annual all-female Bondfire. She said that the monthly’s non-judgmental vibe meant that it was more diverse than most. “Anyone can come through and rock, and you won’t be scared to come back,” she said, “but you will get some criticism.” Read more…