Jessica Care Moore

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This article is about a poet. For other uses, see Jessica Moore (disambiguation).
Jessica Moore
Jessica Care Moore 2015.jpg
Moore in 2015
Born Jessica Care Moore
(1971-10-28) October 28, 1971 (age 43)
Detroit, Michigan, U.S.
Nationality American
Ethnicity African
Website Official website

Jessica Care Moore (stylized as jessica Care moore; born October 28, 1971) is an American poet.[1] She is the CEO of Moore Black Press, executive producer of Black WOMEN Rock!, and founder of the literacy-driven Jess Care Moore Foundation. An internationally renowned poet, playwright, performance artist and producer, she is the recipient of the 2013 Alain Locke Award from the Detroit Institute of Arts.[2]

Moore is the author of The Words Don’t Fit in My Mouth, The Alphabet Verses The Ghetto, God is Not an American, Sunlight Through Bullet Holes, and a memoir, Love is Not The Enemy. Her poetry has been heard on stages including Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, and the London Institute of Contemporary Arts.[3]

Early career[edit]

Born in Detroit, Michigan, Jessica Care Moore first came to national prominence when she won on "It’s Showtime at the Apollo" competition a record-breaking five times in a row. Her performance of the poem "Black Statue of Liberty" earned her several meetings with high-profile publishing companies. In 1997, she launched a publishing company of her own, Moore Black Press.[citation needed]

Her first book, The Words Don’t Fit In My Mouth, sold more than 20,000 copies. Along with her own work, she also published poets such Saul Williams, Shariff Simmons, Def Poetry Jam’s co-founder Danny Simmons, NBA player Etan Thomas, Ras Baraka and former Essence Magazine editor Asha Bandele.[4]


Moore’s work has been published in several literary collections, including 44 on 44 (Third World Press, 2011); A Different Image (U of D Mercy Press, 2004); Abandon Automobile (WSU Press, 2001); Listen Up! (Random House, 1999); Step Into A World (Wiley Publishing, 2001); Role Call (Third World Press, 2002); and Bum Rush The Page: A Def Poetry Jam (Crown Publishing, 2001). She is the youngest poet published in the Prentice Hall Anthology of African American Women’s Literature by Valerie Lee, alongside literary greats such as Zora Neale Hurston, Alice Walker, Octavia Butler, and Maya Angelou.[5]

Moore has graced the cover of The New York Times, The Metro Times, Michigan FrontPage, Detroit News, Detroit Free Press, African Voices Magazine, and Black Elegance Magazine. She has been featured in print and online magazines across the world, including Essence, Huffington Post, Blaze, The Source, Vibe, Bomb, Mosaic, Savoy, One World, Upscale, Ambassador Magazine, and UPTOWN.[6]

Her multimedia show, God is Not an American, was produced by The Apollo Theater and Time Warner’s NYC Parks Summer Concert Series. She was the host, writer and co-executive producer of the poetry-driven television show Spoken, which was executive produced by and directed by Robert Townsend and aired on The Black Family Channel.[7]

Hip hop contributions[edit]

Moore’s poetry is featured on NasNastradamus album and Talib Kweli’s Attack The Block mix tape. She is a returning star of Russell Simmons’ HBO series Def Poetry Jam.[6]

Music projects[edit]

Jessica Care Moore’s techno solo theater performance The Missing Project: Pieces of the D is a high-energy homage to Detroit. She continued to push the boundaries of the genre by producing her first conceptual art installation, NANOC: I Sing The Body Electric, which opened at the Dell Pryor Gallery in 2011. Her work is currently[when?] on exhibit at the American Jazz Museum in Kansas City and the Charles H. Wright Museum through August 2014 for her Black WOMEN Rock! Exhibition.

This musical focus has led her to create her first album, Black Tea: The Legend of Jessi James.[8] The album is a highly personal and passionate piece of work. It is decades of Moore’s musicality shared with her audience in a new way. There was already music in her poetry; she has now brought it full circle. The album was produced by Moore and pianist Jon Dixon. Features include Imani Uzuri, Roy Ayers, Talib Kweli, Jose James, One Belo and Ursula Rucker. It was released in fall of 2014 by Moore’s record company Words on Wax, in partnership with Javotti Media.


As an artist and activist, Moore lent her powerful voice to the international fight against AIDS. She performed for the United Nations World AIDS Day Commemoration two years in a row and was one of the organizers of Hip-Hop-A-Thon, a concert in San Francisco, which helped increase AIDS education in the Bay Area's Black and Latino communities. Moore has also performed in front of thousands of people during AIDS WALK Opening Ceremonies in New York City, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Florida, and Atlanta.[9]

Personal life[edit]

Jessica Care Moore lives, writes, and plays in downtown Detroit, where she is raising her 7-year old visual artist, baseball-loving, drums- and hockey-playing son, King Moore.[10]


  1. ^ "Jessica Care Moore: Spoken Word Laureate of our generation". Retrieved 2008-06-04. 
  2. ^ "Moore Black Press - Representing Legacy Since 1971". Moore Black Press. Retrieved 11 June 2015. 
  3. ^ "jessica Care moore". jessica Care moore. Retrieved 11 June 2015. 
  4. ^ Aptowicz, Cristin O'Keefe. (2008). Words in Your Face: A Guided Tour Through Twenty Years of the New York City Poetry Slam. Soft Skull Press. Page 135. ISBN 1-933368-82-9.
  5. ^ "Welcome -". Retrieved 11 June 2015. 
  6. ^ a b "Jessica Care Moore - Speaker Profile and Speaking Topics". Retrieved 11 June 2015. 
  7. ^ "jessica Care moore poet - publisher- activist- rock star- playwright - actor". Retrieved 11 June 2015. 
  8. ^ "18th & Vine Jazz & Blues Festival". jessica Care moore. Retrieved 11 June 2015. 
  9. ^ "Jessica Care Moore". Fubar. Retrieved 11 June 2015. 
  10. ^ "Untitled". Retrieved 11 June 2015. 

External links[edit]