Upstater Magazine Artist Feature

“Artists are nothing more than vessels given a message to put out to the world..”

“Travel gives you an old soul,” says Decora Sandiford. He should know—he’s been on the move and writing about it since he was 13. Today, he’s renowned for both his art and his activism, and he and his longtime partner, Jennifer Loeb, are parents of a son, Samson, born in 2012. But he found his life’s path in 2001, at an open mike night at his alma mater, Orange County Community College. There, he met some boon companions, and founded the ReadNex Poetry Squad. In 2008, the quintet toured 40 cities, released an album, Social Issue (followed by The Day before Sound in 2010), and launched “Hip Hop and Poetry Saved My Life,” a youth workshop targeting multiple intelligences via multi-arts education. Today, the workshop is taught at 87 schools across the U.S. and abroad, and ReadNex’s five members consider one another family.


PressDecora Sandiford