Wednesday, February 24, 2010

2 long weeks!

I can't believe I've been away from my blog for two whole weeks! It's a crying shame. Shame, shame ,shame on me! LoL. But I do have I excuses, which I consider to be legit.....I've been extremely busy.   Everytime I sat down to write a new post, I remembered something else that I had to do, so I stopped withoug finishing. Even as I'm writing this I can think of at least five other things that I probably should be doing, but it's time to break this negative trend....................... :)

Take last week for example. Last week I launched a new campaign for my business, The Meat Pie Girl.

I started selling meatpies last year after seeing how much my family, friends, and basically anyone who tried them told me how good they were. I sold a little for a few months, then I kind of let it go. I stopped advertising and everything and really didn't get any orders.  But since I've been looking for ways to make extra money, I decided to wake the sleeping giant. Lol.....

I felt my biggest problem was lack or advertising, so for now, I've been using texts, Facebook status updates,  and The Meat Pie Girl Inc. page on to advertise. I'm working on my flyer right now, and I should be done by the end of the day.

This is the first text ad that I sent around through mass text. I took it right after slaving in the kitchen in my bummy clothes. Next one I do I'm going to have to dress nice and make the ad look fly and stuff. Hahahaha.....The words that went with it were: Order your meatpies today! 5 for $3! Exclusively from The Meat Pie Girl Inc.

I'm selling the meatpies for 5 for $3 and so far the response has been pretty good. I make them every morning and bring them to school with me. Yeah, so that's taking a lot of my time. But I think it's gonna be worth it.

Along with all the things I pile on my plate to do, I've agreed to teach these little girls Igbo dance. I don't even know how I got myself caught up with that. Well actually I do. One of my friends knew a lady who was looking for someone to teach these kids, and he suggested my sister. But seeing as how she doesn't drive and can be a little unreliable (lol) I ended up agreeing to to do it. I told her that I'm not a professional; I don't even consider myself that well-versed in the art of Igbo dance. But she said she just wanted someone who was willing to do something. So I agreed.

Actually, the only reason my friend suggested us is because last year my sister, me, and two other guy friends did an Igbo traditional dance at our school's African cultural show. 

That's me on the end.  Igbo Kwenu! Lol...

It was fun and all, but I don't really feel that qualified me to be teaching anybody. Though I did teach my dance class some Igbo dance moves last semester. But none of them were Igbo, so they wouldn't have known the difference if I didn't do it quite right anyway! Hahahaahah....

Anyways, I met the little girls (and some of their brothers) last Friday. They were so cute! I can't wait to get started working with them. They showed me the dance the performed last time, a makossa dance.

Then their moms got up and started dancing. :)

After taking pictures, I joined in. If you know anything about me, you would know that I love to dance. If I hear good music, you can count on it! Lol...

On Saturday we had our Haiti benefit dinner and it was pretty good. Later that night, one of my friends had a birthday party. You know the kind, blasting Naija/African jams. It was really fun.

 I danced myself silly and went right to sleep when I got home, as is my habit with events of that sort. Hahahahaha.....

So that's just a little of the stuff that's been keeping me busy these days. But I'll do my best not to neglect my blog anymore! :)

Wednesday, February 10, 2010


Wayne State University almost never closes school, but today we have a SNOW DAY and I am TOO HAPPY! Hahaha.......  :))

Yesterday on American Idol the guy reppin' Naija, Bosa Mora, got sent home... :( I got a chance to interview him a few days ago, though. I put the interview on the post about him below. You should check it out. The guy seems very humble and genuine. I pray he finds other venues to his dream. Here's lookin' at you kid! ;) Lol....

Anyways,  this past Saturday  was Wayne County Community College's annual Passport to Africa. I was at the Downtown campus with my mom to sell jewelry that she and I make. There were lots of vendors selling jewelry, books, clothes, soaps, lotions, and even some African stores selling plantain and other dry goods. There was so much cool jewelry, African and not, that I couldn't help but patronize some other vendors.

 My mom selling her jewelry. She's been making jewelry for almost 3 years now and this was her first show. She did pretty good. :) She also found out about other events where vendors can sell their wares, so this is just a start for her.

 At the table next to ours was another mother/daughter duo selling all kinds of merchandise, from perfume and purses to stuffed animals and stationary. The mother was Terry, and her daughter Taylor was quite a little businesswoman. All of 11 years old, Taylor charmed many would-be passersby to stop at her mother's table. Terry said that Taylor had been helping her sell at various shows since Taylor was 5, telling people to come on over to her mother's table. Terry was really nice and gave my mom tips for selling at different shows. Thanks Terry!

The school did a good job of putting on this event. There was a fashion show with people modeling African clothes. It was kind of funny seeing the African Americans trying to dance to the African music that was playing. Lol....I guess the rhythms were kind of strange to them. There were also professional African drummers and dancers. After wowing the audience, the dancers pulled some kids from the audience to join them.

It was a pretty fun day. Wayne County is having Passport to Africa on it's other campuses throughout the month. Check out the schedule here.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Bosa Mora (interview below)

I was planning on blogging about Bosa Mora the day right after his audition aired on American Idol, but by the time I got around to it, the earthquake in Haiti had hit, and seemed a little trivial to me to be blogging about an American Idol contestant. Then I lost sight  of it for a minute. But I'm glad I didn't forget.

This Naija American guy is from Columbus, Ohio and he's got talent, for sure. He's been doing music for a while, both singing and writing music and playing the piano and guitar.  I was just so excited when he started talking about how his parents (and by default, him too) are from Nigeria.  And then I heard his audition and was like YEAH!!!!!!!!! Naija in the house! Brotha can sing.

I loved how they showed his family. His mother, ever a true Naija beauty, wore a big, bright orange gele. Hahaha.......I  also loved how she,  ever the God-conscious Naija woman,  said "God is good, and we are grateful. Thank you," after son got the golden ticket to go to Hollywood. 

I'm looking forward to seeing how he'll do in the long run. I really don't watch American Idol much after hilarious auditions, but I hope he goes far. 

He's not  the first Nigerian American to be on American Idol. If you can remember 2 years ago, there was Chikezie. Chikezie is an Igbo name that should be pronounced Chee-ke-zee-ay. The judges called him Chi-keezy, which to me, sounds like a name for some wack underground rapper. Hahahaha.....poor guy. Chikezie  ended up going pretty far though. He was really great.

As for Bosa I hope he goes all the way. Bosa for American Idol 2010! Yeah, I'm biased. I might even vote for the first time ever.

Anyways if you go to Youtube and type in "Bosa Mora" you can find videos of him performing music. You can also go to his Myspace page to hear more of his music.

*******************UPDATE ************************FEBRUARY 10

Here's the interview that I did with Bosa:

Q: What is your full name?
A: My full name is Bosa Chukwudi Olisameka Mora

Q: What does it mean?
A: My name means "Bow to God for he is merciful"

Q: How old are you?
A: I am twenty two years old

Q: Where were you born? Raised?
A: I was born and raised in Columbus, Ohio

Q: How many sibblings did you say you had again?
A: I have seven other siblings and I am child number five.

Q: How did you first get into music?
A: I first got into music when I was very young, I can't remember how old I was but I just got into it listening to it and singing along to songs on the radio. It was not until the end of high school that I started to see singing and writing music as a potential career for me.

Q: Where have you performed?
A: I have performed all along the east coast from New York to Boston, Columbus ,Ohio in the Midwest, and even LA in the west coast. My first performances were in high school and then I started to play in bars, restaurants, subways, streets, hotels, colleges, private events, and many other random places. I perform my original music with bands on occasion but for the most part on my own.

Q: Who are your favorite musicians? Your biggest influences?
A: I have many favorite musicians and influences, too many to name to be honest, but I would first say that I draw my own music from the music of West Africa and America. I listened to many African artists growing up, particularly Nigerian such as Prince Nico Mbarga, Chief Stephen Osita Osadebe, and Fela Kuti. In terms of American artists I love the music of Stevie Wonder, James Brown, Michael Jackson, Sam Cooke, and many of the soul pioneers and legends. I love anything that has a real emotion to it whether it is pop or independent, as long as it has soul I feel it.

Q:When did you decide to audition for American Idol?
A: I decided to audition for American Idol when a close friend of mine decided to go and I decided to try too. Neither of us were really interested in doing it but we decided to give it a try and see it as an opportunity to get out there. For me, it was a chance to show myself to people from all over and hopefully shed enough light by singing someone else's song for them to want to really see me shine with my own original music.

Q: How do you think you will do on the show?
A: I believe I have done very well already in getting out there an auditioning and being noticed. I am very grateful to have gotten so far and to have received so much support from Americans, people from all over the world, and Nigerians. To get any kind of exposure as an upcoming artist is something to be grateful for and proud of. In my eyes, I have already accomplished a great task even though as an artist I have an even greater journey ahead.

Q: Is music a full-time thing for you, or are you doing anything else, like school, work, etc.?
A:  Music is a full time thing for me but it has'nt paid me enough yet for me to do it as my only form of work. I have worked in offices as an intern, buildings as a maintenance worker, sales, non-profits, and a bunch of random jobs. I also went to the Berklee College of Music in Boston and just graduated last year. At Berklee I studied composition and professional music. While I was there I worked to learn more about the music industry, collaborated with my peers, and grew as an artist, composer, songwriter, and performer. I received very little musical training growing up so I taught myself the piano and the guitar with a few lessons on the side. It was at Berklee that I really began to see that I could do music as a full-time career.

Me: Ok, my blog is Naija American Girl, so I gotta ask:

Q:What tribe is your family from?
A: My family is from the Igbo tribe.

Q: Do you speak your family's native tongue?
A: I do not speak my families native tongue fluently but my parents have always spoke it around my siblings growing up so we all have conversational skills. As for me, I am still enjoy learning to this day.

Q: What are your experiences being a Naija American guy? Were you ever teased in school, that kind of thing.
A: My experience being a Naija guy has been a good one for the most part but it has not come without some challenges. Growing up in Columbus, Ohio and going to a school predominantly white and African American, I stood out as being African because my family has never been ashamed of our culture and people could see that I was different. I used to struggle with not fitting in. Even though I was born in America, I was never really considered an African American because my family is Nigerian and my parents where born in Nigeria. I was teased about my name and all the things that made me different. In terms of Nigerians I have always felt welcome except in some cases. The fact that I wasn't born in Nigeria means to some that I am not Nigerian enough and I am more American, leaving me in the middle, being not Nigerian enough or American enough. Despite all of this I hold no grudges because I know who I am and I am proud and I feel someone in my position is only misunderstood because people don't fully understand and not because they are prejudice. What has been the best experience for me being a Naija guy is the strength and courage I find in my roots and my ancestors, It helps me as a musician to know that whatever may come I can handle it. Also, being more grown up, many of the people who did not understand me before and teased me are more than just accepting now, but loving. They can see now the beauty of being Nigerian and the wonderful culture of the country.

Q: Do you travel to Nigeria often? If yes, how do you like it? How do family members treat you? If no, do you want to? Why or why not?
A: I have not traveled often to Nigeria but I have been there and I plan on going back again as soon as I can. When I was there I will say that the first thing that struck me is how different Africa is than what some in other parts of the world who have not been there would describe it. Many times you see Africa on TV and think though nature's beauty shines bright on the continent, it is plagued with problems. There is truth to that, but there is also truth to the fact that there is so much more to Africa than meets the eye. I was inspired by my time in Nigeria and treated well by my family there as well as other Nigerians I met. Though I was singled out in some ways as an American I was never rejected or treated disrespectfully. There is a beautiful spirit in Africa which I am grateful for the opportunity to have experienced.

Q: How do your parents react to your desire to pursue music? Did they ever give you the "this is not a stable career path" speech? Lol.
A: Yes! My parents did react at first to my desire to pursue music with hesitation and uneasiness. I definitely got the "this is not a stable career path" lecture and "how will you make money" speech. lol. Its funny because I look back and can laugh even with my parents because we all know that something is happening and its bigger than American Idol or any TV show. For me, I am learning more every day that my gift as a musician is bigger than me. I never asked for it but I've been blessed with an opportunity to learn so much about music. My faith is that I will get a chance to share my gift on a grand scale with people all over the world. My parents are with me now along with my family and I am fortunate because that is not always the case. It was very good that they did not accept it at first because I got a chance to experience a setback and I showed them that it would'nt stop me. That has prepared me for this journey as an artist because there are many setbacks to come and peaks and valleys to overcome but I believe I have what it takes to persevere through challenges even more now with my family behind me.

Q: Lastly, what is one experience or event that you will never forget? It could be funny, sad, profound, or just random.
A: One experience I will never forget is my first musical. I was a basketball player for most of high school and focused on being the best basketball player I could be until I got stung by the music bug and never recovered. I remember skipping practices to write music and slowly transferring all the energy I put into basketball into music. One day my coach called me to his office and rather kindly told me he noticed I had not been as focused as before with basketball and could tell my mind was on other things. He was really kind about it, and I could not disagree because I knew that my basketball days in high school were coming to an end. After a long talk he told me he thought it best for me to leave the team and I told him I understood. I did'nt know what to feel and for the first time in my life I really didn't know the next step. The next day I was in math class listening to my math teacher who was also the drama director when an announcement came on that called for men to dare to be a part of the musical "Les Miserables" because the school needed men to pull it off. I considered but not enough to make the move to audition that day. Later on, I was about to leave to go home when I went back into the school to get a drink of water and there at the fountain was my math teacher who was also a drama director. We talked a little which was interesting because we didn't talk much out of class and she was not the type to push conversation but this time we talked quite naturally. Before I left she looked at me and said, "You should audition for the play, you look like you can carry a note." That pushed me enough to do it and I got the lead role and a part in the biggest musical our school had ever seen. It was one of the best experiences of my life convincing me even more to follow music and also to pursue acting. I will always remember that trip to the fountain and ever since I've never hesitated to stop for a drink when I'm thirsty. You never know, that drink might change your life! Chidinma thank you so much for the interview. Its my pleasure to be on your blog and all the best to you.

Good luck to you Bosa, God bless you!

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

The African Union's new chairman

In an attempt to stay somewhat current with what's going on in Africa (not just Naija) I try to visit frequently. Of course there's the stuff about Nigeria's ever-absent president, Yar'Adua, and the militants attacking greedy oil companies in Nigeria's delta region.
But today I read a story about the election of a new chairman to the African Union yesterday. Bingu wa Mutharika, president of Malawi, is in. Muammar Gaddafi, Libyan president, is out. From what I was reading, it seemed like Gaddafi was quite upset for losing his seat. And that he's scheming a whole bunch of other summits to gain a name for himself.

As for the African Union itself, aside from numerous conferences and reports, I don't really know what they "tangibly" do. In any case, in the midst of Gaddafi's sulking about his loss, calling himself Africa's "king of kings," Bingu wa Mutharika said something that caught my attention:

"Let us reflect that Europe and the much of the Western world developed using wood, meat and fish from Africa, but Europe and the Western world did not develop through resolutions, and declarations. They took action - concrete action. So I appeal to you for action, action and more action."
-Bingu wa Mutharika, president of Malawi

Those are some great words.To me, when it really comes down to it, it's about doing, not talking. I like how he acknowledged what Europe did to Africa without desiring to linger in a helpless victim state. Action! I'm big on that. I really hope and pray that this man actually plans on standing by his word and not letting them be mere sound waves bouncing off the air and falling, forgotten, to the ground.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Good February 1st to ya!

Good February 1st to ya! Every time this time of year comes around, I start thinking about my birthday. Or continue the thought. The month change always makes it's closeness more apparent. My birthday is on the 14th. Yes, Valentine's Day. Only God know why, and that's a whole different issue, which I probably won't be blogging about. Hahahaha.......

This year, I 'm turning 22. Hmmmm......let me think back a little..........As a kid, every birthday was exciting for me. Even if I didn't have a party (which usually was the case) my mom still got cake and made sure the living room was decorated, and got the birthday girl at least one present. And pictures are a must. Here are some from my 8th, 9th, and 11th birthdays respectively.

She still does that for all of our birthdays, even if it means sending the birthday girl (me) to the store to get the required decorating items when she (the birthday girl) doesn't feel like it and insists that it isn't necessary. Oh, mommy :)

Thinking about it, I was glad to turn 19; I was almost out of the teens. I was excited to turn 20; I had finally left behind that wretched suffix '-teen' from my age. I was thrilled to turn 21; I was 'technically' an adult. But 22? That's something altogether different to me. It just sounds old! Lol....I'll get over it though. And get used to being 22. I guess. Hahahahaha.......


I'm involved in the planning of an event called "Help for Haiti" on February 20. The event will be at Wayne State University in Detroit, Michigan. I invite all who are in the area to come. It will prove to be a great event with musical performances, word
s from Haitians and people who have been to Haiti recently, a great dinner, and so on. 100 percent of the proceeds are going to the Red Cross for relief in Haiti. Here's the flyer. If you look up 'Help for Haiti' ion Facebook, you should be able to find it. But if you have any questions about it, let me know.

That's all for now. Have a great day!