In Memorium

Jalaluddin Mansur Nuriddin (July 24, 1944 – June 4, 2018) was an American poet and musician. He was one of the founding members of The Last Poets, a group of poets and musicians that evolved in the 1960s out of the Harlem Writers Workshop in New York City.

He was born Lawrence Padilla in Fort Greene in Brooklyn, New York, USA. Earlier in his career he used the names Lightnin’ Rod and Alafia Pudim. He is sometimes called “The Grandfather of Rap“.

A devout Muslim, poet, acupuncturist, and martial art exponent (a practitioner of a form of Bak Mei), Nuriddin’s talent and genius with words and rhythm are renowned and he has produced some epic poems such as “Be-Yon-Der”, an 18-minute piece on The Last Poets album 1977 album Delights of the Garden, which was released on Celluloid Records.

In April 2008 he reunited and reconciled with fellow Last Poets Umar Bin Hassan and Abiodun Oyewole, along with David Nelson and Felipe Luciano, all of whom appear in Made in Amerikkka, a documentary by French film-maker Claude Santiago.

Nuriddin did an album for Adrian Sherwood and the single “Mankind,Pt. 2”, produced by Skip McDonald and released on Adrian Sherwood’s label On-U Sound, can be heard over the closing credits of the film 187.

Nuriddin and the Last Poets also had a cameo appearance in John Singleton’s 1993 film Poetic Justice, starring Janet Jackson and Tupac Shakur.