Real Talk: Pain

Today I want to talk about pain.

This is not something I usually do and I generally like to avoid these conversations because people will start to say you are crying for help when you just need an outlet. The truth is: sometimes people are not looking for sympathy or for someone to save them; sometimes people just want to say how they feel and how they are hurting just because.

Can’t we just share?

So here I am, opening up about my pain because I feel I will explode if I don’t speak. I am not trying to seek attention, I just want to share.

I have experienced different levels of emotional pain before but nothing compares to the one I experienced in the month of June. 2017 was a struggle and like many, I hoped that 2018 was going to be the year that would change my situation. I was making moves and doing things so I was positive that things would be different

Not so much.

The start of the year was a drag as I dealt with rejection from 3 media fellowships and a rejection email from a job I applied for. Everything started to feel like a routine; from work to my personal life, it became as if I was just floating through life. I had been on my media journey professionally for close to 6 years and I felt stuck. I had hopes and dreams but it just felt like the change I was desperately seeking wasn’t going to come.

Then Germany happened.

Germany felt like my prayers were finally getting answered. I was desperate for a win and I got one. Immediately, I started making plans on the moves I will make when I travel and what I would do when I get back. I was so confident that things were going to change after the experience and that I would be moving into a new phase of my career.

 

I was in for a shock.

Germany was amazing in itself. My experience at the Global Media Forum is one that I will not trade for anything. However, on my last day in Germany, I made a list of the things I wanted to do once I got back. There was a lot I was going to apply to my journey once I got back to Nigeria and I was ready to work. I guess life had other plans.

Every time I tried to embark on a project it felt like I hit a roadblock. It was like I came back to Nigeria and found myself in a space that I was unfamiliar with. It became very frustrating because I was confused. I started doubting myself and every decision I had made. I would get home and just cry because it felt like I was in a hole and I had no idea why I was there to start with. To make matters worse, I couldn’t talk to anyone about it because “I just got back from Germany” and I had to “count my blessings.” Every morning I would tell myself that I have a job and I have been blessed with countless opportunities and I should be grateful. Truth is, I didn’t feel that way. I was angry and was finding it hard to function. It felt like the pain was eating me up from the inside out and I just needed it to stop.

I am doing better. Trust me I am. Things are not where I want them to be but we are here and we are kicking. Every morning I tell myself that I am on a journey and I have to trust the process. The thing is, I have also come to understand that the waiting process can be painful. I have decided to take every day as it comes; cry when the tears come and laugh when I am happy. It is also extremely tiring when people try to dismiss your emotions because “you have everything going for you” and you should be “happy all the time.”

I have made peace with the fact that pain is a part of adulting and there is nothing I can do about it. I have also come to understand that not everyone will understand and it’s fine. We all have our baggage. Whatever it is, just stay strong because tomorrow is almost here and it might be better than today.

Now that’s real talk!

Image by The Photocentric.

Watch the brand new episode of my vlog below

The 90s made a comeback and I am here for it!

Everyone around me knows that I am obsessed with the 90s and early 2000s. Everything about the pop culture scene back then is orgasmic. Well, apart from the fashion.

The fashion can stay in the past.

If you ask me to put my music player on shuffle, one out of every 3 songs you would hear are from that era. My wedding would most likely be a throwback party because the DJ will play songs from a playlist that I would give to him and it will definitely have songs from the 90s.

I woke up today to a tweet that said Drake sampled Lauryn Hill. The first thing I did was yell because Lauryn Hill was a huge part of my childhood. Let me take a pause and break it down for you.

Growing up, I had a lot of older people around me. My parents were separated and my best friend was my dad’s neighbour so I only got to see him whenever I was on holiday or when I was spending the weekend at my dad’s house. This meant that I was mainly surrounded with grown folks at my mum’s house. It was at that moment I fell in love with American Pop Culture. You see I couldn’t find solace in Nollywood because while some of the films were exciting, they had a way scaring the daylights out of me. My mum also loved Yoruba films and Nkan’be so there was no way I would watch TV with her; at least if I didn’t want to have nightmares. Whenever I got back from school, I will watch Disney cartoons on Channels and stations like DBN, AIT e.t.c always played some of the hottest songs of the time. DBN especially had a thing for Brandy because I saw a lot of Brandy videos on that channel. Whenever I will head to my dad’s house, my best friend and his sister would also increase my pop culture fix. I remember watching the music video for “Remember the Time” by Michael Jackson in their room. (They had a TV in their room.  Good times). American Pop Culture was a safe haven for me. I fell in love and I fell hard. Aaliyah, Brandy, Monica, Usher, Living Single, The Cosby Show, A Different World; that was my life. For an awkward child with big teeth, it was all I needed.

I didn’t have The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill as I didn’t start owning albums till I got to JSS2. All I had was television and radio. I would record the videos when they come on TV on a video tape and playback when I was bored. I would do the same on my walkman for the songs I would hear on the radio. My mother was not going to get me any CD that wasn’t Don Moen, Kirk Franklin or Hillsong so TV was going to help with that. That didn’t stop this boy though. I knew all the singles from the project; Doo Wop, Ex Factor and Everything Is Everything. Those songs were everything even though I didn’t learn the lyrics to Doo Wop till I was in University.

I know at this point it might seem like I am just rambling but I just had to provide some context to how it always excites me whenever anyone samples music from the 90s. Drake had done it earlier with I Get Lonely Too when he remade TLC’s Fanmail (which is my favourite TLC song by the way). From Fifth Harmony sampling Always Be My Baby on Like Mariah to Zendaya’s Something New sampling TLC’s Creep. There was Camila Cabello sampling Christina Aguilera’s Genie in a Bottle on Crying in the Club to Ed Sheeran‘s sampling No Scrubs on Shape of You and let us not forget Wild Thoughts. It seems like the vibe from the 90s and early 2000s are here to stay.

Moving past samples to actual hits; Finesse by Bruno Mars has such a throwback vibe that it is hard not to have nostalgia to a song that was released in 2017.

The 90s is making comeback and I am here for it!

Drake recently released Nice For What and it sample’s Lauryn Hill’s Ex-Factor. As I ran to YouTube to check out the video this morning, I remembered a little boy watching the music video on television. I remember admiring Ms. Hill’s hair and wondering how can someone be so perfect. Those were good times. The song is such a great sample of an iconic song and the message of girl power in it makes it an instant bop for me. Considering that the music video has such great representation of some of the women in Hollywood making giant strides.

I am older now and everyday I long to escape. I was teased a lot growing up but it never phased me. I had my music to rely on. I was young and was connecting to the music and experiences of people who were older than I was and lived in a different reality. Sorry not sorry, this throwback vibe is here and even if it stays for a while or becomes a flash in the pan, it is important for my peace of mind and for the boy that was.

Watch the video for Nice For What here

 

Ex-Factor was also sampled by Cardi B on Be Careful off her Invasion of Privacy album. Listen below.

Watch the video for Ex-Factor here.

Let us work together in 2018

Let us work together in 2018.

This is a PSA for everyone who says they believe in me. The ones that will comment “I am so proud of you” in the comment section. The ones that have my career figured out for me. The ones that are good/bad critics.

I appreciate you. I really do. However, talk is cheap so I am going to say this again, let us work together in 2018.

While 2017 had its great moments, I didn’t leave it any different and it has made me thoroughly anxious about 2018. My mind is spinning and all I really want is to make headway career-wise. Is that too much to ask?

To this end, here are a few things that I feel you need to know about me.

1. I am a Television Presenter and Producer with over 5 years experience. I was nominated for my work as a Presenter at the 2017 edition of the prestigious Future Awards Africa.

2. I have been blogging since 2007. That’s over 10 years.

3. I am a media consultant and my client list is a diverse one. From Nollywood Actor/Filmmaker, Udoka Oyeka to Parables Entertainment (Producers of Diary of a Lagos Girl starring Dolapo Oni) to DavidB and the NGO, Global Rights.

4. I am a Production Fixer and I work with international journalists who need to do reports in Nigeria.

5. I am a Compere. I hosted Miss Ideal Nigeria in 2015 and Mr Ideal Nigeria in 2017. I also hosted the launch of “Not Dancing to their Music” in February 2017 and the Religion and Sexuality Symposium held at the United States Consulate in Lagos.

6. I am a Pop Culture Commentator and I give commentary on The Harry Minute podcast. I have also done that on Tosyn Bucknor’s podcast and on TVC’s flagship breakfast show, Wake Up Nigeria.

7. I am a vlogger and I have also appeared on other vlogs including The Pastry Boy and Adenike O. Adebayo‘s channel.

8. I love to plan and I have been part of the planning process for a lot of events. Some of them are The first 2 editions of the Live Your Dreams Africa Conference and On a venture to Davidb (Davidb’s first headline concert in Lagos). I also work with Gbagyichild Entertainment (The conveners of Taruwa, the Taruwa Festival and the producers of the critically acclaimed stage play, Shift Lemme Faint)

I love what I do and I am very passionate about anything I set out to achieve. So this is me asking that in 2018, you actually think of Harry Itie. Fees are negotiable and you might be lucky I would do it for free if I am passionate about what you want to do. Call this post whatever you like, I want to end 2018 on a high and I need you to help me. I need you to work with me. I need you to contact me and let us do business.

Let us work together in 2018.

If you require more information, kindly shoot me an email with the contact form below.

 

Photographer: Odunayo Ajayi for thePhotocentric

Clothe: Kochhouse

Back and Better?

A few months ago, I lost my website.

I cannot describe how I have felt since it happened and I honestly do not want to go into the detail. Even though I could have done things differently at the time, and maybe tried to save it, it was a struggle I guess I was not willing to have. Everything I had worked on and tried to create was lost. I practically gave up. Continue reading “Back and Better?”