Ayinde Russell is an award-winning slam poet, an internationally-traveled vocalist and musician, and a celebrated speaker and trainer. Through the performing arts, Ayinde invites audiences to share in all of the diversity and commonality of the human experience. Every person is a living story, waiting to be shared. The arts are an incredible vehicle to open dialogue.
Ayinde is a
National Poetry Slam Champion having competed on Denver SlamNuba's team
in 2011, and has taken claim to the title Grand Slam Champion for
Denver's Mercury Cafe and SlamNuba teams. He has been a featured performer on TVOne's third season of the series Verses and Flow. He's toured more than 50 colleges and universities all over the country as a
Incredible opportunities have allowed Ayinde to share stages with with
well-known artists and entertainers across numerous genres. Gil Scott
Heron, Eric Roberson, Avant, The Flobots, John Tesh, Fred Hammond, The Last
Poets: all amazing and innovative performers Ayinde has shared performance space with. He was recently named
Fox 31 Denver and 95.7 FM The Party station’s Denver Idol in a local
singing competition. He was also a featured vocalist on UPN 20’s ‘Gimme
the Mike!.’ He has performed as a singer internationally and continues
to travel the world performing as a musician. His work with the music and arts organization More than Music has led to numerous recordings, radio station appearances, music festival performances and concert appearances all over the world.
As an educator and facilitator, Ayinde has educated thousands of people in conferences, events and schools around the country through workshops and motivational speaking. He has conducted workshops for the South Metro Denver Chamber of Commerce, the Denver Broncos, Denver Water, the John H. Chafee Foster Care Independence Program, state universities, public junior high and high schools, NAIS schools and numerous other organizations. He holds a Master’s of Divinity in Pastoral Counseling from Denver seminary.
In the meantime... he is trying to find a medium between negotiating world peace, and finding a really good sensei for katana blade lessons. Never far from some inspiring manga and some sacred scriptures, Ayinde is trying to figure his way into the adventure book story his playground inner child has been trying to write. A fan of everything neo-soul (pretty much), boxing, that Old Spice commercial ("I'm on a horse."), Bruce Lee, Wuxia, sci-fi, things bound with hardcovers or soft, things that smell delicious, people that speak with conviction and compassion, Ayinde is in search of what inspires redeeming belief.
Or maybe we'll settle for a really good bowl of Russian borscht soup. And time with an incredible wife of 12 years named Chekita.