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About a week ago I caught one of the most realist spoken word pieces on twitter by a creative called Mim Shaikh.  Some of you maybe familiar with Mim as he is also a radio broadcaster for BBC 1xtra Sat-Sun 6-10am and BBC Asian Network Thursday 9pm-12am. Mim Shaikh wrote an open letter to his mom who battles with depression from being in an abusive relationship.

I wrote this sincere and honest open ‘Letter To My Mother’ where I express my most honest thoughts and feelings towards our lacking relationship whilst growing up. This is dedicated to anyone who has or is still growing up in similar broken family situations and to every human being on this earth who seeks perfection in themselves by looking inwards – Mim Shaikh


“Letter to Mom” really resonates with me personally and you all know how fond I am of open letters as previously I featured my personal open letter  COUSIN LOVE  which was inspired by Cadet’s letter to his cousin Krept (rap duo Krept and Konan). Funny enough Cadet retweeted Mim Shaikh’s “Letter to mom” and I checked it out and it just instantly touched me because the story was so similar to my own. I  have family members who battle with psychological issues. Watching someone who I love and gave me life that lives with depression, anxiety or schizophrenia for most of their adult life is hard, as we almost become strangers because they don’t really acknowledge YOU sometimes because they are locked in their own world. I realised that these particular family members actually dont know the simplest things about me such as my favourite meal or colour.

Listening to Mim’s story, the part where he says ‘I don’t know your favourite colour and you dont know mine.’ I remember one day I asked my mom to tell me something that I like, and  she never really knew what my favourite colour was. I remember thinking about my other friends when their family used to mention somethings about them and nearly everyone knew their favourite colour. After listening to this spoken piece I really felt OK knowing that there are people who have similar stories like mine. It’s become the norm to share your stories not as a sob story but in a way that really touches home for a lot of people.

Thank You Mim Shaikh


Twitter: https://twitter.com/MimShaikh_

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/mim_shaikh/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/mimshaikhoff…
Contact: mim@mimshaikh.com






It’s been a minute since I have heard Cherri V sweet vocals after such her fantastic EP “Athazgoraphobia”so I was very intrigued to hear Cherri’s new project “The Hard Drive Vol.1” which is a collection of 5 unreleased songs. What I like about Cherri V is that it doesn’t matter how long she hasn’t released new material for, I like that she maintains peoples interest and she brings that extra sparkle to music.  Cherri’s vocals is soft and so interesting that even if I may not like all of the songs, I know that I have to listen to every single song. Another thing that I like is that I can tell that by the way Cherri sings I know she has written her songs or just naturally puts her passion into every track.

My personal favourite is #1 as it’s a real womans track and lyrics reflect that  ‘I AM’ no 1.



Twitter: https://twitter.com/cherrivoncelle

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/cherrivoncelle/

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/user/CherriVon

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/cherriv


Let know your thoughts on this weeks blog posts. Next blog will feature New Favourites so send me some of you suggestions.

Email: inspiremysmile@icloud.com

Twitter: https://twitter.com/funkynessa

Instagram: @funkynessa


Words by Vanessa Ryan



Hi readers

Hey black child

Couple weeks ago I came across a video of a young girl who performed the  beautiful poem by a poet Countee Cullen  ‘Hey Black Child’.  Pe’Tehn Raighn-Kem learnt the poem in just a week, her mother said on a show that she would read to Pe’tehn before she was born. At 18 month she was reading, baring in mind this little stunner is only 3 years old.

I found her performance very inspiring as it’s always refreshing to see children learning and showing off their creative skills from an early age. It would be nice to see more parents paying attention to their children’s creative mind and embrace it more.

Last week was World Book Day. Many young children dressed up as their favourite book characters. I love seeing children exploring their imaginative minds and if they can recite stories that is before their time then this is brilliant.

“…Hey Black Child
Do you know where you are going
Where you’re really going
Do you know you can learn…”

Hey, Black Child

Hey Black Child
Do you know who you are
Who you really are
Do you know you can be
What you want to be
If you try to be
What you can be

Hey Black Child
Do you know where you are going
Where you’re really going
Do you know you can learn
What you want to learn
If you try to learn
What you can learn

Hey Black Child
Do you know you are strong
I mean really strong
Do you know you can do
What you want to do
If you try to do
What you can do

Hey Black Child
Be what you can be
Learn what you must learn
Do what you can do
And tomorrow your nation
Will be what you what it to be

~ Countee Cullen

Check out the Hey Black Girl Performance here:


P.S Give Children the Education that they deserve 🙂

Words By Vanessa Ryan


Black History launch

 As part of the First World War Centenary this years Black History goes by the theme of Black Blood Runs Red. This will mark the contribution and sacrifice of the soldiers and civilians from Britain’s former colonies.

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This event will be a drinks reception followed by the opening of Vanley Burke’s Freedom or Death Photographic Exhibition. With invited key note speakers and a special commissioned performance, along with live music, spoken word and visual performances to tell the story of what Africans, Asian and Caribbean people contributed and sacrificed to the First World War.

If you would like to attend the launch, please email Paulette Francis-Green p-officer@the-drum.org.uk

Alternatively you can register for tickets here https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/birmingham-black-history-month-2014-launch-event-tickets-12665004369

Closing date to register is the 5 PM Wednesday 24th September.