Poetic Memorial In New York


small group of about 30 well wishers converged at the

Riverside Church in Harlem to pay their last respects

to Anthony "Poetic"

Berkley, rapper with the Gravediggaz. While

Poetic died on Sunday, July 15, 2001 in California after

a two-year battle with metastatic colon cancer, his wife,

Dee decided to have a memorial service in New York City.

Prince Paul, partner Frukwan, Allhiphop.com’s Jigsaw,

singer Esthero and others were on hand.

Jigsaw, editor-in-chief

of Allhiphop.com, spoke about Poetic from the aspect of

a hip hop fan and human perspective. "I was a fan

of Poetic, like a real fan," he said, "So when

we were approached to help with Poetic’s plight,

we did everything that we could. That’s how we do

when we believe in something." According to Poetic’s

wife, Allhiphop.com conducted the last interview on Poetic

prior to him dying.

Producer Prince

Paul of the Gravediggaz and Stetsasonic spoke frankly

about his personal relationship with his friend. "One

thing I learned from Poetic was the strength," he

said. "He’s a guy that never lost hope. When

you see Prince Paul, you see Poetic." Prince Paul

spoke from memory about Poetic without a prewritten statement.

The last and

arguably most moving testimonial on the program came from

Frukwan, currently the only member of the Gravediggaz.

Frukwan spoke at length about his relationship with Poetic,

even at one point, began rapping to his partner. "He’d

get in the booth and you couldn’t tell [he was sick],"

he said. Often looking to the ceiling of the majestic

church, Frukwan said hip hop music was one of the last

things motivating Poetic, because they recorded two albums

worth of material. Aside from his alias, "The Grym

Reaper, he said he dubbed Poetic "Tony Titanium,"

because the metal was "as hard as Poetic’s will

to live." Frukwan said that his mission was to bring

awareness to Poetic and "make his existence meaningful."

Frukwan and

publicist Lisa "Chase" Patterson both chastised

certain individuals in the industry for not support one

that was deemed a friend at the height of the Gravediggaz

popularity. "I once saw an artist friend of Poetics

give a 100 dollar bill to a 5 year old for their birthday,

and this same "friend" did nothing to help Poe

in his time of need," Patterson said in a prepared



wife Dee Dee thanked all the people in the room in a brief

speech. "I hope that if we learned anything, we learned

about courage" she said softly. "He showed it to us while

he was alive, and proved it to us in his death." In tears

she continued, "Regardless of everything I hope that his

death was not in vain. Love is a powerful thing....looking

at him I just wonder how each of us would have reacted

in his place."

After the

memorial people mingled and reflected on the love for

Anthony "Poetic" Berkely, a man that went from

being homeless to doing world tours to representing much

that is wrong with the recording industry.

The new album

Nightmare in A-Minor (Echo International), is set

to drop August 23 with the first singles being "Rest

in Da East" b/w "Nightmare in A-Minor."

To Donate

Send Money To:

Washington Mutual

Anthony "Poetic" Berkeley Fund

3901 Atlantic Avenue

Long Beach, Ca 90807

email: planetmeridian@aol.com

For More information


Meridian Entertainment

201.521.9742 (fax) 201.521.9745

email: planetmeridian@aol.com