"Poetry Man" is a song by the American singer-songwriter Phoebe Snow. The song was written by Snow, produced by Dino Airali, and first appeared on her 1974 self-titled debut album. On American Top 40 in September 1980, Casey Kasem claimed that Phoebe Snow said that the song is about Jackson Browne. This later was dispelled by Snow as rumor that had arisen only because Browne was the first musician she had toured with after release of the song.
Released as a single in late 1974, "Poetry Man" became Snow's first charting hit, rising to number five on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in April 1975 and number four in the Canadian RPM Magazine charts. The previous month, the song reached number one on the Billboard easy listening (adult contemporary) chart, where it remained for one week. The success of "Poetry Man" helped Snow achieve a Grammy nomination for Best New Artist in 1975, an award that was won that year by composer Marvin Hamlisch.
Snow has stated that the production on the song was more jazz-oriented than the eclectic, acoustic guitar-based music she has often performed throughout her career, saying that she "never intended to be a jazz artist. That takes a heavy amount of background."
"Poetry Man" returned to the Adult Contemporary chart in 1999 in a cover by Hawaiian female vocal trio Na Leo Pilimehana, which peaked at number 24.
In 1997, Zap Mama, an African-Belgium based group, delivered a version on their album, Seven which included a dialog of sorts with Spearhead's Michael Franti playing the Poetry Man himself.
Queen Latifah recorded a cover version of "Poetry Man" that was included on her 2007 Grammy-nominated album Trav'lin' Light.
Saxophonist Jessy J recorded an instrumental version of "Poetry Man" on her 2008 album Tequila Moon.
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