The history of modern spoken word poetry owes a debt to ethnic and sexual minorities alike. Beat poets like Allen Ginsberg helped to re-popularize public poetry readings while simultaneously smashing laws and social taboos designed to keep the queer quiet and terrorized with threats of arrest and worse. Contemporary poetry slam stars like Saul Williams continue to make spoken word a medium where African-Americans and poets of all races can make their voices heard. Say What? is a celebration of language and identity, and it’s also a benefit for Nashville Black Pride, a nonprofit that provides education and affirmation for Tennessee’s African-American LGBT community. The $5 cover goes directly to Nashville Black Pride.