Growing up with gal-dem
Lava La Rue on growing up as a Caribbean alt-kid
On this week’s episode of our podcast, Natty and Nie speak to Lava La Rue about growing up as a Black alt kid, co-founding NiNE8 collective with school friends Biig Pig and Mac Wetha, and the importance of collectivism in the creative industries.
Lava reads a poem that expresses her understanding of her identity as a mixed-race person and the politics around it; of being raised by a Black family in a Black community, and navigating the complexities around having a mixed heritage in the UK.
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7. Bellah on self expression through songwriting39:28We're closing season 8 of Growing Up with gal-dem in conversation with North London’s very own Nigerian songstress: Bellah. Nie & Natty sit down with the singer-songwriter talking all about her musical journey and creative storytelling process. Bellah expands on her ability to connect with her audiences by writing songs that paint a vivid image into telling the truth about her experiences in life.Through an extract from the first-ever song she wrote after a breakup, Bellah reflects on her growth since writing this at 18 years old, and how she has maintained a deep connection to herself and her emotions through her healing.
6. Clarkisha Kent on cultivating safe spaces, identity development and complex family dynamics42:31This week on Growing up with gal-dem we're joined by Clarkisha Kent, a Nigerian-American writer, culture critic, former columnist and author of Fat Off, Fat On: A Big Bitch Manifesto.Clarkisha talks to Natty and Nie about nurturing a safe space for herself within complex family dynamics and whilst writing her book Fat Off, Fat On: A Big Bitch Manifesto. Her book taps into her memories, both pleasant and unpleasant, and traumatic experiences around fatphobia.In her extract, Clarkisha describes two pictures of herself which reflect on pivotal times in her life that have affected her identity development. Clarkisha reflects on these two identities and how she found herself through the displacement of cultural dissonance. You can also check out our other podcast series "Reclaimed and Rewritten" hosted by Clarkisha - all episodes live now.
4. Issy Wong shares the connection to family and her mutual love of sport49:22In this episode, Natty and Nie are joined by British-Chinese cricket player Issy Wong. Issy shares how she came into her cricket career and the lifestyle she cultivated from this. Familial connection is a prevalent value with Issy; and throughout the episode we learn all about her Macanese heritage and hear captivating stories of her family and culture. We hear an extract from 13-year-old Issy, sharing her memories of watching live football with their family and how she connects through her support of the Liverpool Football Club.
3. Priya Ahluwalia on representation in fashion, creativity and sustainability52:31This week we're joined by fashion designer and creative Priya Ahluwalia. With Nigerian and Indian roots, Priya talks to Natty and Nie all about the intersections between creativity and sustainability in the fashion industry.We hear more about the values she upholds in herself and within her brand, Ahluwalia, to bring inclusivity and accurate representation of Black and Brown people.She shares an extract from her notes that touches on the complexities of feelings versus thoughts, body image and perceptions of success and how she nurtures herself throughout.
2. Mimi Zhu on finding yourself again after love51:54Welcome to this week's episode of Growing Up with gal-dem, with Valentine's day around the corner. Tune in to our conversation with 'quintessential' Gemini, queer Chinese-Australian and author of 'Be not afraid of love', Mimi Zhu.This episode taps into the relationship between love and fear within ourselves and our identities. Mimi, Natty & Nie reflect on how we talk to ourselves during the liberation of complex relationships. Mimi shares how they learned self-love, and self-improvement and reflected upon understanding the reality of oneself after an abusive relationship and the tools they used for growth in the manifestation of their book.You can buy Mimi’s book Be Not Afraid of Love here
1. Amaarae on finding the beauty in everyday after grief37:17This episode of Growing up with gal-dem contains mentions of death and grief. So if you don't feel comfortable listening to this episode, please skip this one and listen to one of our othersThis week, we're kicking off season 8 with Amaarae, proud to feature her track ‘A Body, A Coffin’, to the latest Black Panther film soundtrack in 2022. She takes us through her journey to develop a track specifically for Wakanda and how her music career materialised through her artistic process.With Wakanda forever following Chadwick Boseman's unfortunate death, Amaare, Natty & Nie dive deep into topics around grief, staying connected to family and culture and ways they have individually overcome grief.
8. Paapa Essiedu on finding time and space to be easy on yourself43:40In our final episode of season 7 we are joined by the ever-talented Paapa Essiedu, actor and primetime Emmy winner. In this uplifting and hilarious episode Natty, Nie and Paapa discuss the power of representation on stage and screen. In his joy-inducing extract we hear about Paapa’s first experience travelling abroad and the pure experience that is going away as an adult for the first time. If you are looking for a laugh while reflecting - this is the episode for you.Look out for the next season of Growing up with gal-dem when we return later in 2022! Thank you so much for listening.
7. Maliha Abidi on smashing through cultural expectations43:20In this week’s episode of Growing up with gal-dem, Natty and Nie are joined by Maliha Abidi: artist, author and NFT Queen. Maliha talks us through why her books are about representation and appreciation for all the women of colour who have changed the world through what they do. She discusses with Natty and Nie the infamous problems surrounding NFTs and the best ways for us to tackle them.For this week’s extract, Maliha shares an entry from a diary she wrote years ago on the patriarchal inequality in her family and cultural expectations as a result. She discusses how stepping out of that cycle allowed her to pave her own way.