Total Pageviews

Friday, February 11, 2011

Yeh Mera India!

Many things have been happening around me.

I got into Lagos yesterday from Port Harcourt, where I had stayed over in preparation for the Bayelsa Book & Craft Fair, which my company, BLUES & HILLS is organising in conjunction with the Bayelsa State Culture and Tourism Bureau. I had a safe trip and enjoyed it, really. For the most part, the people I'm working with now are lovely people to say the truth.

But I have the Centre for Research in Art of Film & TV waiting for me to handle the graduate students in creative writing and film direction and this I will be doing as I get to Delhi on Sunday. Monday morning my class resumes and I shall be blogging about my classes here. I will post pictures of each day in class with these great minds that I'm gonna interact with.

There is more happening, so keep coming back as I write about this trip to Delhi.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Confession: What D'Banj did to me...

I get easily impressed with what D'Banj does, but these days, it's no more working. Yes, the Mr. Endowed remix has US great musical star, Snoop Dogg, but that is where the big thing ends. I understand how easy it is to surprise Nigerians. You know what? I think the world is like that, but I am hundred percent sure that people in the US are not particularly moved by Snoop featuring some Nigerian musician in a song. Look, the US media won't be enthusiastic writing about the collaboration, because for them, this is some obscure Nigerian artiste that Snoop wants to HELP. Gawdaamit! We don't need help.

So, I watch the video and there is nothing special about it. It is amazingly predictable. I am not saying music videos should be arty and all rowdy serious, but Sesan Ogunro, the dude that directs all videos of the MoHits guys lacks concept and some ideas. I'm sure he rarely has time to sit down and read a newspaper, which is why he thinks in one direction: get the camera, take shots of a big house, a pool, half-dressed women, get D'Banj to wear something fashionable and do the same dance steps and then get Don Jazzy to stand around, with the MoHit kids in the background and snap snap, camera action, then speaker TALK! He gets back to the studio and if Final Cut is available, he clips the shots together and here we have the video. This is what happens to the collaboration with Snoop. Look, that video is CRAP!

If they wanted to surprise me, something better should have been done. If they wanted to make their presence known to the world stage with a Nigerian music video director, I would have recommened Clarence Peters, whose ideas are far more intelligent and mind-blowing. He has time to think, not because he's busy, but he's a bit of a recluse and his camera angles are wonderful. Sharp.

The thing about women making themselves some sort of commodities in music videos is appalling. That scene with the girl in the bathtub with dollar bills all over her could have made a better scene in Slumdog Millionaire. Yes, the colour of the cinematography is cool, yeah? But what is the whole concept about? The song? Snoop holding a Nigerian passport? Those things are for clueless people, who know nothing about breaking into the world. Maybe I'm wrong, but pandering to Snoop than our very own 2Face Idibia is a bit stupid, as we always want to think we are right when we get AMERICANS involved.

But at the long last, I'm still a huge fan of D'Banj and I will keep respecting him. But gawdblessyou, get a new music video director that can set you right. Sesan is outdated and completely wacky!

Welcome to Bayelsa

I arrived Port Harcourt today.

I will be going to Yenogoa, Bayelsa in the morning, where the Bayelsa Book & Craft Fair is taking place from the 24-26th of March, which happens to be part of the AMAA Awards in Nigeria.

Port Harcourt is not a place a place I want to stay or live in.

This evening, over drinks, I met with my team, who will be supervising the Fair and we talked extensively about how to make things work. It is hoped that the Fair will work out with the way the programmes have been laid out.

During the meeting, we were joined by an acoustic guitarist who played some beautiful songs for me. He reminded me of James Blunt and I told him that, because the similarity was very stark. However, I feel that his kind of music will be appreciated very soon here in Nigeria, because he renders it with his whole heart.

As I get to Bayelsa tomorrow, I will update you. For now, it is good night!

Monday, February 7, 2011

Samson Oti Agha: The New Face of Nigeria

I am not a fan of soccer. I've never loved it. I still don't. I get boosebumps when I see everyone whimpering because of some European League match or something. I have never seen a famous soccer star and felt the way I feel when I see music or film stars. For me, they are just there. Nothing special, really.

However, Samson Oti Agha left a different impression on me when I met him in Delhi in the middle of last year. At first, I had my doubt, till it dawned on me that they are very genuine Nigerians in India. Those ones who are genuine are cynical of others and those who are not, are also cynical about those who have actually set out to be good citizens of this nation that has touted itself as a country of rogues.

I spoke with Samson and realised he is very focused. He has his mind set on becoming one of the highest footballers. He has tall dreams, which won't crash in Delhi, because his plans to dominate are very encouraging. What I found more compelling about him is the fact that he knows where he is heading to and knows the rules to get there. He believes in humanity too, which is a good thing. Nevertheless, it is envisioned that he faces racism in a country that internally has issues to sort out. All that can be left aside as he is sure to break records.

He is a soccer star! I did notice that later. But his calm nature bellies everything. He has been widely written about in the Indian media, controversially dominating the football teams in the North East.

Samson may not be dreaming about coming to play in Nigeria, but I'm very sure he's set on conquering the European teams too, like other Nigerian footballers...

The Thing with Fashionistas in Nigeria

Naeto C, you are primus inter paris. Yes, you are grandstanding because you are different. You are the best. Let them do their suit-thingy and look like these frogs below!

Okay, guys, I don't know that dude, but I think he is the weakest dude in the world. He needs some fresh air. Next time, he shouldn't dare come out!

I am sure some filmmaker is ready to cast her as The Fairskinned Black Witch of Lagos! She can as well show us what colour of pant she is wearing.

No matter how obsessive he is of Pastor Chris Oyakhilome, he represents ignorance.

Bayo, you are my good friend. One of the cutest people and gentlest people I know, but please, Bayo, please, I am not sure this works for a normal Nigerian in a Nigerian weather. Thank you for standing with that pretty lady! She knows what she wants.

Patrick Doyle represents ME! I will keep liking him and his wife! Thank you Lawd!

I've never been a fan of stylist, Dimeji Alara, so I will start with him. I met him once and I like his calmness and humility, but all that shit they wear, sorry, buddie, I could do more of that in my next life in Paris! Thank you. Not Lagos! Save me, biko.

I got worried today, because of what I saw on TV: stars in the US smiling into the cameras, in suits and well-trimmed jackets on Red Carpets. All of a sudden, I remember the night of the Future Awards and how everyone who dressed in same tradition was rushed by photographers. They wanna get a photo of that lady in nice long gown! That guy in suit! And they guys are really smiling, chuckling like excited virgins, getting snapped. I nod myself and hate that. I usually don't do all that glitz and glamour thing, but I've been clamouring that writers start doing it, for some commercial reasons. Those authors could easily be marketed same way musicians and film stars are.

One night, I had called a friend and invited a friend to a film fund gala. I had two tickets to get him in. He responded to my sms in a bizarre way: "I am not properly dressed for dinner." What the fuck? How do people dress for dinner? I ask. Maybe, I am not that kind and should not criticise, but really, how stupid can most Nigerians get? Dude finally came to the event, in a cool short and shirt and sandals and was not thrown out. Then sitting with him, he realised I was casually dressed, not even minding the Yoruba guy in agbada sitting by my side with his wife, which cracked me up well. I loved that man. It couldn't get any more comic that others took the pain, standing infront of their mirrors primping themselves up to attend a night show and end up looking like fools to me. What do you really want? I want something more simple for us. Just like the dude who was struggling so much with his fork and knife to eat a simple meal at the gala? I had one spoon which I used gently and ate well and didn't bother looking up at anyone for approval or disapproval. What annoyed me was that my friend started bickering like a lamp about the dude who couldn't use his cutlery. Wetin concern me? No be fools like them? How can't you learn to be comfortable in what you do.

We have so much panned to the sensibilities of the West. Whatever they do is deemed to be the ultimate. If the West doesn't say stuff, it is not it yet. How Nigerians pay more attention to BBC? Where the fuck is NTA? How Nigerians want to always make sure we try to convince foreigners that we are a good people, when our stupid sense of fashion already marked out us. For real, take it from me, those fools who grace Red Carpet events (no matter how Western that sounds) are just plain stupid and I feel they have issues, which they need to settle.

Just like the other day I was at Inspiration FM, a guy in suit brushed me aside while he was walking into the building. I stopped and looked at him. He paused also and said, 'OK, sorry.' I listened well to that OK side and I just didn't like it, so I rudely said to him: "Dude, you are in suit doesn't mean you are more responsible than me. Even with my dreadlocks!" That made him laugh and he calmly apologised again, but I was already out.

I wear what I wear because what I wear is what defines me and not wear what I wear because others are gonna wear same thing. Shame! For once, I feel the guy in the Nigerian traditional clothing is better and has his brains intact! Others can come suck my dick!

Sunday, February 6, 2011


I worked all through the night and woke up very late. Something new is happening. I'm trying to let it lie low. I have this fear of things not happening the way I plan them these days. Like if I say I'm gonna buy a car and I don't have the money yet, it never happens again. So, I'm not talking about the exciting new things I'll be doing this year. Doesn't that sound superstitious enough? Oh yeah, that is true, but I'm sure same thing happens to you all the time.


After I mailed a lot of people for this new project last night, I went to bed, feeling good. And then found myself in a dream-land. It was a funny thing. Scary, yes, but it was exhilarating. I was riding in this old Excalibur car, driven by a woman. She was ugly. She took me to a hill and stopped, then asked me to get down. When I did, I saw other people who dressed as me: in white. We were all going to the same place, but I just didn't get to the end of the dream, because there was the creak of the ceiling. Power! And I woke up, tried to get back to work, but oh no, I was already too weak. I just held myself down in the bed, tried to sleep, but the thought of going back to that strange dream couldn't just let me.

I have not been able to do much writing in my new book. Kinda stressed out, working to see if I can really start making money. But again, when I do things for money, I end up not getting any money, but whenever I volunteer, good things come. So, I'm completely learning the new tricks of walking the lanes of life.

Right now, I don't have much to say. I am sitting with a bottle of beer in Bogobiri, with two friends who are musicians.

For fun, I wrote on my Facebook: "Church was good today." It got everyone excited. The comments show that they really believed me. Truth is this: I don't DO God and I'm not in any way interested in doing God so that people can like me. I've found peace within my heart and I will remain like this. Forever.