About Dred Sista Ren
Chicago/the Woods, IL
Dred Sista Ren/LaTressa R. Hodges-Lumpkin considers herself a "WEstorian because their history is fiction, give it back." And a Poetical Commentator "things that are overstood never need to be explained." She is a sought after poet, political organizer and lecturer. Her work emphasizes the impact history, spirituality and culture has on our political outlook. Sista Ren is a founding member of the Vanguard Black Underground with nearly twenty years in the game. She hails from Fitzgerald's, Spices, Dejoie's, the Bop Shop, the Literary Guild Complex, Rituals, A Touch of the Past and most importantly Literary Explosions (Lit-X) Anotha Level. She has performed and/or hosted at universities, venues and festivals around the country and Canada.
A Prysmatic Dreams Poet, Ren has shared the stage with famed poets, writers and performers Elder Sisters Sonia Sanchez and Rita Dove, Elder Brothers Amiri Baraka, Sam Greenlee, Useni Perkins, Quincy Troupe, Sterling Plumpp, Phil "Kelan" Cohran and Dr. Haki Madhubuti. Her contemporaries Brothers Avery (Big Daddy) R. Young, Cashus D, Chuck D, Chuck Perkins, Tyehimba Jess, Denizen Kane, Still Black See, Triple Blak, Reality, Eduardo Arocha, Ben Ortiz, Jerry Quickley, Alphonso Hunter, Malik (the WordSmyth) Yusef, Khari B., Quaraysh Ali Lansana, J. Ivy, Gregorio Gomez, C. Otis Grant, Oliver Grimball, Common, Stan Skibby, Charlie St.Cyr-Paul, Mark Stampley and Marc Smith (the Founder of Slam Poetry). Sisters Tina Howell, Tara Betts, Maria McCray, Smokie and Brenda Mathews.
She was blessed to be featured on two tracks of RIAA certified platinum producer 'Mr. F.R.E.A.K.'s Weekend Love Affair' with Brother Regie "love jones" Gibson. She along with her producer/bass player extraordinare Brother Jauqo III-X have recorded two tracks with master craftsmen and Grammy Award winning Brothers Jamaaladeen Tacuma and Calvin Weston. The two songs 'the fire this time/roll call' and 'one childless mother... continuous urban operas'. Will be released on their forth coming album 'mississippi roots... on my head inside out'.
Her former manager Brother J. Love once wrote "To see her perform is to ride the roller coaster of emotion akin to our experience in this diaspora. This sister presents the perfect picture of what one can accomplish between the artistic and political arenas, along with the talent to thrive in both worlds." To that note Sista Ren has held elective office and was a member of the Black Elected Officials of Illinois. At 25, she was the 7th Congressional District Coordinator for the historic Carol Moseley-Braun senatorial campaign, running her third largest office. She served as an election monitor for the historic South African Election at the request of the South African Consulate General.
When Brother Chuck D introduced her on MTV he said "This Sister not only bring the noise, she brings the action and you can catch her on the frontlines." She was an advisor to the Triton College Black Cultural Center. She successfully lobbied the U.S. Justice Department into convening the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights hearings at Proviso West High School. Which addressed the deplorable treatment and mis-education of the predominantly Black and Latino districts of 89 and 209 particularly young men. Sista Ren has been a staunch opponent of police brutality and has been a primary organizer in several high profile cases.
She has shared podiums and panels with Mr. D*ck Gregory, Mr. Cliff Kelly, Mr. Lerone Bennett, Judge R. Eugene Pincham, Brothers Steve Cokely, Bill Hampton (Brother and President of the Fred Hampton Freedom Scholarship Fund), Gator Bradley, Craig Hodges, the Rev. Al Sharpton, the Rev Al Sampson, the Honorable Prince Asiel Ben Israel, Dr. Na'im Akbar, Dr. Jawanza Kunjufu, Dr. Conrad Worrill, Attorney Lewis Myers, Attorney Standish Willis and President Barack Obama; Mrs. Merlie Evers, Ms. Bev Smith, Sisters Akua Njeri, Pam Afrika, Alexis Herman (the first Black woman Secretary for the Department of Labor) Farai Chideya, Dr. Frances Cress-Welsing and Dr. Naimah Latif.
Sista Ren has served as the Vice-President of the Proviso West Suburban N.A.A.C.P., Illinois State President Black Think Tank, Chicagoland Urban Coordinator Rock/Rap the Vote HipHop Coalition, National Youth Director Black Political Convention 1996. She has received the Fred Hampton Freedom Scholarship Award. She was gifted by Dr. Bobbi Anthony Perez with Chicago State University's National Association of Black Professors Award in May, 1992. She was honored to participate in the Honorable Minister's Second HipHop East-West Unity Summit. She has appeared in national publications and on national media outlets such as BET, CNN, PBS and MTV.
Sista Ren is Congressman Danny K. Davis,' 7th Congressional District Political Action Chairperson.
Sista Ren is digging like an archaeologist being a nana to her GrandManSun & GrandButterfly.