Bassey Ikpi, Daughter, Sister, Mother, Def Poetry Jam Poet, Mental Health Advocate, Founder of the Siwe Project and Author of the 2019 Release, I'm Telling the Truth, But I'm Lying (Harper Collins), stopped by to discuss her newest project, self care, boundaries, and Broadway Musicals.
Sanity and Self
Bassey Ikpi, Daughter, Sister, Mother, Def Poetry Jam Poet, Mental Health Advocate, Founder of the Siwe Project and Author of the 2019 Release, I'm Telling the Truth, But I'm Lying (Harper Collins), stopped by to discuss her newest project, self care, boundaries, and Broadway Musicals.
Sanity and Self
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Baroness Brée: 0:14
Hello. Welcome to Fabulous Hungary. I'm your host. Fairness. Bree, where does our gold toe always emerge fabulously in spite of fuck? Hello. And thank you for turning into fabulous buggery. I'm your host. Fairness. Bree and I look forward to becoming your destination for surfaced A ratchet discussion on self care relationships and pop culture. Get your drinks out, Open your minds and let's dive in. Today we have our guests. Bassi, baby daughter, sister, mother death poetry poet, Mental health advocate Bestselling offer off. I'm telling the truth, but I'm lying. I'm claiming it for you in advance. Thank you. Appreciate it. Welcome, Bassi. Thank you for having me. We're so excited that you're here. Thank you for coming. Tell me, how are you?
Bassey Ikpi: 1:11
I'm great. I am great. Um, a little sleepy, but I'm good. I'm happy to
Baroness Brée: 1:16
be here. What do you tell me about what you're working on? Tell me about your project.
Bassey Ikpi: 1:23
Um right now I'm putting the finishing touches on my book. Um, it's been a long time coming, so I'm very excited about it. I'm doing my best to stay focused on what's here. As opposed to projecting forward. Um, so that's what I'm doing right now far
Baroness Brée: 1:43
is this project. This has been a long time coming for you. Let me share with our listeners that I've been following her and been a fan and almost a stalker on social media for many years. And I'm just so proud. I feel like watching Ah, family member of blossoming right now. I mean, you just have just come such a long way. And I'm so proud of you and so excited to actually, I've already pre ordered your book and you need to let me know who's recording your audible. What are we doing about that? I'm going todo so I'll pre order that when it's ready. I'm just excited for you. We have to make sure she's a PG county, D c area native. We have tea not native, but long enough long enough. Well, I think anything over 20 years almost is a native now. Uh, okay, just just check 20 years so we wouldn't give you that. But, um, can you let me know? What were you most proud of? What's the best part of this process of writing a book and, you know, starting the PR process. What are you most proud of?
Bassey Ikpi: 2:45
How much I learned that I didn't know about myself The last couple of years, specifically been very, very difficult for me. And there was a party. There was a section or moment towards the end of the writing. It's never really done. But towards the first end of the writing that I realized what how much had grown, how much happier and more content And, uh, just just a better person, not just for myself. Before the people around me. I was very, very careful, uh, to take note of of the growth because I think that a lot of times we can get stuck in all the ways that we didn't do something right or didn't finish something, or we were not as kind as we could have been to somebody else or nice kinds. We could have been to ourselves on DSO. My proudest moment was like I've come a long way and I've done well and, um, I can continue to do well, there's no there's no ending to getting better.
Baroness Brée: 3:54
I like that. Um, I also like the fact that that kind of Segways into my next topic for you which is self care. Um, your huge advocate for self care Just in knowing you, I know that when things get to be uncomfortable, you're a good person to say enough of that. And what other techniques do you have to to keep yourself going to make sure that you're not overdoing it, that you're monitoring your yourself care technique?
Bassey Ikpi: 4:26
Well, uh, one of the things that I've learned over the last course, of course, the last year is mindfulness. I talked about it a lot because it was it was life changing for me because I I live with bipolar, two disorder, impulsiveness and and obsessiveness and compulsion are are real big factors of that. So for me to be able to, like, take a beat before I say something before I do something before I react to something has has just changed my entire life. It's it's just such a huge game changer. So when it comes to self care, uh, part of that is understanding that I can take a moment no matter what the situation is, no matter how dire it may seem to somebody else, I can take a moment before I react to it. um I also give myself permission to do foolish things. I think that, um, for a long time. So she as you get older people like to dictate what maturity, means and acted dictate what adult ing means. And and I've always been someone who, uh I have I've never been my age. Um, for better or for worse, I understood. Yeah, I've just never been my age. I was a little bit too much or when I was younger and then I kind of like, stayed the same. And, you know, there's a theory that I have that I write about in the book about There's Ah, there's I don't know what the phenomenon is called but people who have drug addictions, they stay stagnant at whatever age that addiction held on. So if they start using it like 18 or 19 emotionally and mentally they are 18 and 19. They have to do a lot of work to sort of progress to their years, and I feel like the same could be said of mental health and mental illness, and I definitely have a little difficult time. Sometimes understanding, I think, also has to do with how how time passes, so I I allow myself whatever formalities for qualities for evil things. You got it. You're my second language. Yeah, I allow myself television. Like if I need to watch an entire season of something on Netflix, I will do that. And I don't make apologies for it. If I literally just don't want to do anything that day, I will not do anything and not make apologies for it. Um, I think that we sort of get translations, black women. We get trapped in this, like, strong black woman thing. And being a strong black woman seems to only mean one thing, and for me, it just means staying alive. And it just means keeping myself together. And it just means doing whatever I need to do to take care of myself. Like, you know, one of the things I say often is never apologize for how you choose to take care of yourself, because it's what works for you and the end of the day. That's all that really matters.
Baroness Brée: 7:35
I feel you on that 1000%. I appreciate when you said giving yourself permission. That's something that we don't give enough of. We are so tied to other people's definition of what we're supposed to be doing. So as a divorce, A as a You know, I also I suffer from depression, anxiety, something. Sometimes my brain gets the better half of me. And so I have to be mindful and give myself permission to journal. Have to give myself permission to, you know, not goto work today. Um, you know what? Guys go take a mental health day. They don't really understand what that means, but we have to give ourselves the right to get ourselves together. And, like you said as a black woman, were supposed to carry everyone's burdens. And that is a myth. That is something that we have got to correct because everyone needs to carry their own part of their own journey. And I can't do it for everyone. So no, really thank you for touching on that, because we have got to do better on giving ourselves permission. So question for you. Do you have any self care APS that you use on your phone? Oh, my
Bassey Ikpi: 8:43
God. I've got tons of like, the best thing that ever happened to me was the whole smartphone. I just don't know culture and what you call it, like I have all kinds. I have.
Baroness Brée: 8:57
Of course. Of course. The reason I ask is that I'm addicted to self care. Epps Now and now with the new iPhone update, they have a screen time monitor that shows you how long you're doing. Whatever. So now I'm holding myself accountable to not be on instagram for four hours a day. Not be on Facebook is what are you doing? Are you creating content or you absorbing? Commenting? Yeah, and even
Bassey Ikpi: 9:18
if you're creating content, you're giving it away. And I know that for ah, long time, it was easier for me to write like pages of stuff on Facebook and people like, What are you doing? Like delete that and put it somewhere else that that will serve you. And but it was just like I trained my brain toe on Lee. Be ableto work in that space because it's it's it's non judge, judgmental, and it's and it's You can have all the typos you want and you can. You can just sort of do that. Where's when you go to like a word document? It's like serious, like you're doing serious business when it's the same conversation you should be having. But Okay, so myself, craps, Um, I had one called the Freedom app. I have it on my laptop, and I had it on my phone in my iPad too. But they ah iPhone Or are they apple just disconnected? For some
Baroness Brée: 10:16
reason, they changed the algorithm so it can't block Facebook. It can't black instagram so
Bassey Ikpi: 10:21
But I think that they when they when we got the update, I was like, Oh, you guys did that cause you all had your own thing. Okay, I got so Yeah, I have I have the moments app which helps track it helps train train your usage. Yes. So you put like maybe you give yourself, like, a three hour limit to use the to use your phone to pick up your foot like accounts. How many times like I find myself just picking up my phone and looking at and I'm like, nothing beats like, What am I doing? I think there's no notification for anything, and it counts. How many times? Embarrassingly like, Wow, I picked up my phone 400 times today. That's insane. Eso it. They have a boot camp that that, like every day you're like, Hey, why don't you just put your phone in another room? How about you spent an hour doing this? How about you do this? And, um And then if you go over your thing, it, like, makes this, like, really annoying. Like honky.
Baroness Brée: 11:21
Really? That's accountability for that as
Bassey Ikpi: 11:23
yeah, I remember. I was I was in the grocery store and like whatever I've got my headphones on, it's cool. Like whatever. It'll be annoying to me. But I need to look at something, and then it bypasses it, bypasses your headphones and goes into your speakers. So I was at the store and she was blaring, and I had to, like, turn it off and put it in my purse like it's I disabled. Because who needs that kind of pressure thing at the time, it was very, very useful. Um, I have, like, meditation APS, Um, you know what's crazy? You asked me that, and I said, I love, uh I love those APS. I love self care, aps, but I don't have any on my phone anymore. Lying. I used thio. I had, like, a whole little box with, like, tons of icons and whatever, but I don't have them anymore. Like it's we've moved in that my therapist about this, like, grown like, wow, I've I've grown like I can't find any. They're not hidden. Um, I have, like, sleep APS. I have What? The podcast. Sleep with me Pocket.
Baroness Brée: 12:36
Yes, Door got me addicted to that. And now you know, it's like I can't go to sleep without his voice, which could be problematic for when I start dating. You know, it's like, Hey, who is that man? I must listen to him read to me the news.
Bassey Ikpi: 12:48
What it does is is, um, it's really just this. It's just the tone of his voice, and it's just like the nonsense of you trying to figure out what he's saying and then kind of being rolled by by the background. I found, like, because of that app, I can fall asleep to just about anything. Um, so I'm just really like, caught off guard. I
Baroness Brée: 13:12
see. Really didn't have any yet. And still, I ask you this question completely off guard because that's something I always ask people. What do you have? We have Facebook. We got Instagram. We have all these crazy APs on our phone. What do you have when you're at that tells you to be mindful. And so I use affirmations Assistant. Really helpful. It pops up like, four times a day. Your bed, Estephe or ah, you know what have you meditated today? Take time for prayer like I have reminder Set. I'm affirmations assistant. And then there's another at that. I'm addicted to call eternal sunshine, where they actually have different activities for you to do. Every day there's daily mantra, zits, a wisdom I will send them to you. They have different music acts that you can link to. And then my new favorite at is brain spark ER, which is a It's just a a brain jogger type at where you can pick what you want to write about. So if I'm journaling and I don't know what I want a journal about today you can shuffle a card. It's almost like those little cards that they sell informations, cars, writing assistant cards and the all these cards, like $40 a pack. And you're like, I'm gonna lose the card. I know myself. I can't find one of the playing cards now for a new deck of cards I just bought so I can imagine me wandering through the city with a pack of affirmation cards. So this is actually the card in the pack and you get coaching pack. You have quote of the day. You have random words. There's a I will send those to you. But then there's actually story starters for creative writing. So if I have article I need to write and I don't know what I want to write about, I just kind of flipped through it until something strikes me. And then I start the process. And then it's like other stories really stupid, Like we scrap it or, you know, let's send it to someone to see we're going to do with it. I
Bassey Ikpi: 14:59
don't have a scrap because it always parts you can build a new car.
Baroness Brée: 15:03
I'm living in my notes at I love notes and my voice mail. Yeah, my voice mail app. And now Scrivener has a apple and that Really, Yeah, so and now I use Dropbox to sink all of it together. So for the most part, I haven't lost too much. I've lost a couple of things in translation, but
Bassey Ikpi: 15:21
so, Yeah, I have, ah, little writing folder that has notes and pages and Google docks and all that stuff, but it's we're talking about what APS I have, and I don't have any more. But I remember that there was a day, um, envy in the boot camp. On moments that was like, if you haven't used an app for X amount of time, delete it. And I was like, Okay. And that's where all my haps went. Okay? Yeah.
Baroness Brée: 15:50
Nice. So I just want a Segway to another section of self care that works for us. We have one thing in common, which is our love for Broadway musicals. So I love trap music and Broadway. I can do both of cardio. Me, amigo, I like, you know, like a You know, I loved a party isn't working. So But then, at the same time, I could put in a fancy gown and go see Hamilton, and you know exactly you know, cry at the end. You warned me. Um so one of our common themes was that we loved Hamilton. It really spoke to my spirit. Cat me. I was in a really bad place with my dad, depression and anxiety. I literally cried every day. I think for a year I was a hot mess. And then this musical comes out called Hamilton and I get it. I'm watching Twitter and, um, this lovely lady here, sitting here talking about one of the songs that bird was singing about where you you seem you're the smartest in the room and, you know, right while you're writing like a writing at the time And that, like that became my theme song for When I'm Writing now is you know, I have all these Hamilton lyrics that pop into my head. And so when your book came out in the first thing, I was like, You're not throwing away your shot And everyone's like here they go with the frickin Hamilton soliloquies back and forth. But like you were Hurricane, you're Hercules Mulligan for, like, six months.
Bassey Ikpi: 17:13
I don't even know where I think I was in Nigeria when I first even hurts. I'm a I'm a Lin Manuel Miranda fan. I've really liked in nights on guy never like it was so funny because I have the in the Heights soundtrack for cast album. For years I never saw it s Oh, I didn't know what The song. I don't know what it was about. Like I had no idea. I just liked what I liked. And then I you know, YouTube always has whatever. And I watch, like, this college production of it was like, Oh, is that what happened? Okay, um, you know, Benny was black. I thought he was just Puerto Rican like everybody else. Um And then I was in Nigeria and someone was talking about Hamilton. I don't know who I don't know why, and I ended up buying it over there and nobody when I came back and, uh, it just it really spoke to me like I was I was in a depression to I could not listen to it without crying, but it gave me like, a target to cry because I was already crying. And now I had, like, I'm crying for this reason, crying for that reason, and that was really helpful. But wait for it was my theme song for the longest, like Oh, like I'm getting emotional now. But it's just there's so much about not just Hamilton, but Lynn want Manuel Miranda's process of right. I think maybe I saw him talking about the process of writing it. He absolutely
Baroness Brée: 18:44
yes. And I've watched him several times talk about his process and how he researched in how he visits the locations and how he talks to the people, the archivist and the official researchers. His process is impeccable. And I'm sitting here, you know, with you know, 17 notebooks with, like, journal ideas of people who have harmed me and Hammer right are 17 notebooks to write, and but his I don't know now he has a financed, you know, path to completion. But tow watch his path. And he did a PBS special about Hamilton and how he did it, and it was amazing. It just made me. He's so profound. He's so deep and I'm excited. To see him is Burt and Mary Poppins. But like every everything he does touches the gold, turns to gold like everything is just he's amazing.
Bassey Ikpi: 19:33
He, um, he did the thing that I think people, for as long as I've been aware of hip hop people have been trying to do, which is turn it into this other thing That's not just musical and then, But just if you think about the genre of musical, like every year or every decade, it reflects whatever like that the rock operas of the seventies and it only made sense. But like hip hop just couldn't get it right. It was always very corny or or very like, disjointed.
Baroness Brée: 20:05
What was that? The Carmen hip opera? It wasn't well received. Yeah, it was all over the place. It was adorable. I love beyonc? Does no wrong in my eyes. So you know it. I still
Bassey Ikpi: 20:17
remember most deaths, like most death was like I was already a huge most def fan, but he was actually really good in that. And I remember, like, bits of, like, stuff that he said I actually to go on YouTube and find, like, just this one. Like little he was talking Thio was Omar Epps or was it Makai Phifer? I get them confused now
Baroness Brée: 20:38
that you said that I'm not one of them. He's
Bassey Ikpi: 20:42
wrapping it, one of them, because he was getting all like Don't touch Carmen or whatever. And he's like also you bad, like it. It's just this whole thing like I For 20 years it's been in my head. I've never been able to forget it. But But yeah, Lynn harnessed whatever that missing thing Waas and he did it in a way that is actually really good. But he's also a songwriter, so it's not just the poetry in the hip hop, and it's all it's also the music and that that casts. I was fortunate enough to see the original Broadway cast, which is which is a story. I don't tell it, cause I didn't I'll tell it here, but I never told it because I didn't want to put anybody on the spot. But I waas on Twitter. Having like I was two years ago was just like one of the most difficult times in my life, and I was fully prepared to not continue. I was done and I was on Twitter and I was talking about something, and Leslie Odom followed me on Twitter, and he tweeted me that he had seen Def Poetry Jam. Um, when he was younger, I think he was still a Carnegie Mellon, cause I'm like, maybe two or three years older than he is, and, uh, He's like it changed my life. And, you know, this is what I channeled in some of the whatever he's telling me this indie EMS And he was like, Listen, if you ever want to see the show, you know, let me know. Yeah. If you get, like, far enough in advance, you know I can I can get you tickets. I've got, like, a little holding of it. And, um, I remember it was, like in I want to say is like an August, maybe in September. And I gave him a January date because I was like, I need to get to January because I was at that point, I was like, I need to find reasons to keep going. I was like, I cannot leave this world without seeing Hamels, okay? Actually, if I have the opportunity to So I gave him, like, a January 20th date, and it was like, September or something, and and I just like I'm gonna have to see Hamilton. I have to see Hamilton, and he and I would talk in the EMS, and I remember 11 day when things started to turn around a little bit. I had had my I had my phone set t play Hamilton to wake me up and it was wait for it on Guy. And there's one day when I was just so tired and I was so like emotionally and mentally I'd like cried all night and, you know, it started playing and I just laid there, like with blaring next to my head. And then he got to the part where he said, um God, what's the part? If there's a reason I'm still alive while everyone who loves me has died, I have to. I'm I'm willing to wait for it. And I was just like, Oh, my God, like, wait for it Like you know and and I just sat and I listened toe that that song on repeat within the whole the whole project production and the whole project, I I found things in every single song that gave me hope. Um, it made me want to And Lin Manuel story made me want to do a thing. I don't know what that thing was. He became the book, but I needed to do a thing. I need a project. I need the work towards something. I started writing, creating a chauffeur, Leslie Odom, to star in like I need a thing on and it gave me a thing. And I think that's one of the things that's that's the most important. I think a lot of people want some kind of like huge, colossal light from the sky. And it's not that, like, it's all these little things that you build and you connect in order to make that rope that you climb out of the whatever pit urine. And and that was one of the major like, you know, I don't know. This road metaphor has gotten away from me because I don't know how you build whatever
Baroness Brée: 24:40
being to make the world understood a stronger, tighter, more available. Yeah, you, me
Bassey Ikpi: 24:45
and not some. Wow. So that's amazing. Yeah, life changing. And then it was just for me. Like I again and the things like Allow yourself Morning. And it became about getting to every single day in tax, no matter what it took. Even if I had to watch it from the wrong side, even if it meant okay, I didn't sleep at all. But there is the sun made it, you know, on And then finally, just one day I was like, Wow, I'm I'm better. I'm not great. I'm not. You know what? We're
Baroness Brée: 25:18
happy you're here. We're happy you're here. And, you know glad to be here. No, but, uh, the fact that that is an amazing story one I don't even know how to follow with my follow up questions now, because everything I have to say is irrelevant. But the fact I mean, Leslie Oldham is my favorite human ever. He was here for D c. Jazz fest, and I've never stopped a person before, But I stopped her heart to you, but, you know, But he was such a sweetheart. He was like, you know, I'm really tired. I don't want you pictures, but he gave me a hug. Okay? Such a speedy. But he this musical has become a pop culture phenomenon. The fact that the tickets are still was high as they are, No matter what city you're in tow, watch people of all colors in the audience crying or rapping or, you know, reacting and the fact that almost 90% of people their love that they know the words for word. And I was singing out loud, not realizing. I'm singing out loud in the lady next to me and I covered my mouth and she stared at me. She's like no girl. Go away and
Bassey Ikpi: 26:17
that's your part. You get it.
Baroness Brée: 26:18
You know, it was just so weird to sit next to this older Caucasian woman who paid Army late for her tickets. And she was getting pleasure out of watching me lose my shit, watching this play that I've been waiting to see forever. So you know that
Bassey Ikpi: 26:31
I love Thio because it's so infused with, like, classic hip hop. I there were a couple of like, like, black people are younger people in the audience with him when we got, like, the biggie references were all like, You don't Okay, you know, you heard that, You know, it was just really and another song who lives who dies, who tells your story? I can't
Baroness Brée: 26:53
listen to that song in public because it makes me think of my parents. It makes me think of what I'm supposed to be doing. Um, that's why we're doing this podcast because it's like, you know what? Who lives who dies, who tells my story? You know you have these half remembered stories. Half remembered ideas. It's not, in my words. It's in the words of my Children or who ever loved you. And when you watched it and, you know, for that to be the last song. And, um, you know, when they did the interlude with Washington singing, you know, who lives with as hotels and you just sit down. You're like, Who will this is? This is real shit. Like, you know, it made me realize our legacies are bigger than us. Death doesn't discriminate, right? So you like he he touched so many people, and you keep
Bassey Ikpi: 27:41
living anyway. Oh, God.
Baroness Brée: 27:43
So now I have a question for you. Top three. Favorite musical.
Bassey Ikpi: 27:48
Oh, God. Um, what's the category?
Baroness Brée: 27:53
Pick one. Just pick any musicals that are your favorites. Okay, how about this? I will start with one of my favorite. Okay, which is wicked.
Bassey Ikpi: 28:02
I can't say because I like defying gravity is like theme song to theme songs. But it's like the standout moment of the show. I'm going to think of it as, like spectrum, like the entire show. I
Baroness Brée: 28:16
love defying gravity, but you know, like I love I love of Elba. I love Glenda. I love Kristen Chenowith. Originally is the role. They're coming back. They're doing it like two shows with both of them,
Bassey Ikpi: 28:26
like the actual show or just like a stage.
Baroness Brée: 28:28
It's a staged NBC musical. Oh, so it's supposed to come out Halloween or something. I
Bassey Ikpi: 28:35
love those I love, how accessible those are.
Baroness Brée: 28:37
I'm excited. They're doing the most. Right now. Some of the musicals is, like, Really way. Didn't need to. Rocky Horror picture.
Bassey Ikpi: 28:44
I like Jesus Christ. I did like I was surprised. Me, too.
Baroness Brée: 28:49
There's a Miss Banshee on Twitter. She's amazing. And so she's one of my other musical fanatics, and we were a little leery of what was going on. But John Legend killed, killed. And so and then
Bassey Ikpi: 29:00
I'm not killed. And my other guy, who was Aaron Burr in and I think he took over for Richard Dix know what
Baroness Brée: 29:09
is his name? And his Richard. Something's It's three name Marie, but no power. He did amazing.
Bassey Ikpi: 29:15
Yeah, he had a fantastic He should have one. Whatever. Prize, Whatever. Whatever price you should have won an Emmy, whatever he was nominated for,
Baroness Brée: 29:21
but, um no wicked is one of my favorites. So, um, what's my others? I don't know. I have so many so many. See, Wicked Hamilton catches my least favorite. Okay, Um, I felt like as a child, everyone said, You know, you hear men really, like all have such a beautiful song. But what they don't tell you about us? Like we're literally watching the hobo cats through the streets of New York or London. Whatever said, you suppose it pretend it's supposed to be, you know, And then one cat comes. You know that the God cat, the Angel cat, comes from the heavens to save one of these poor, you know, the poorest of the most deserving cats and take it to heaven. And I'm like, we've been sitting here for three hours for this shit I remember as a kid, and my dad was like, it was so beautiful that this was garbage. We watched a goddamn Ali can't musical.
Bassey Ikpi: 30:13
I don't like sad musicals. I don't like Les Miserables. Uh, I don't like 17. I don't like anything Like the whole point of me, like musicals is like, everyone sings and dances, and it's great, like I don't want to see He will die, not die in that way, Mr Bob. But Master stole bread and his whole life was wrong. I'm just It just bothered me. I
Baroness Brée: 30:35
love the musical I could have done without Hugh Jackman singing and wailing for
Bassey Ikpi: 30:41
out was actually decent. It was. But everything has a musical performer. He's usually really good. I loved the boy from Oz.
Baroness Brée: 30:49
He did a good job. Okay, fair enough.
Bassey Ikpi: 30:53
But this is a person. I think that's the person that I know him so Well, Um, yeah, I just I didn't likely miserable. I didn't like it at all. Um, I think that the what started all for me was the sound of music. That's what kicked off. Like, What is this? How can I get more eso sounding music? Waas the movie Because everything's a movie? Because no one was like, really going Broadway toe
Baroness Brée: 31:18
so expensive. It's still so expensive and it's almost unattainable for people to go to see them. But just
Bassey Ikpi: 31:23
why? Don't understand. Actually, I'm gonna want to see this website still up. I'll send it to you. I don't understand why they don't sell video or digital whatever of of Broadway cast because not everyone is going to make it to New York and you don't want it. I feel like it's gonna supplement some of the income that they missed. Some of these shows close really early because no one's going to see them and no one's going to see because no one in New York I was so pissed because I lived in New York for so long. But I was always working and I was always traveling. And when I had the money, I was on the road making that money. And then when I was home, I'm not working. But I saw Caroline or change on Broadway. Um, but sound of music, Funny girl, Hamilton goes without saying, Um uh, they're others were the other ones that I really love. Dreamgirls That's the one. I would let one song sort of define it for me because I saw I didn't see it personally, but I found the Tony um, the Tony Performance and oh my God. Um, yeah, that that was just amazing. Jennifer, not Hudson. Jennifer. We know Jennifer. Oh, God, How Jennifer Holliday?
Baroness Brée: 32:52
Because I'm mostly all the gays was about to take me if I could not need
Bassey Ikpi: 32:55
Thio. Yeah, Hot Hudson just stuck in my head
Baroness Brée: 33:01
because she did it last. She
Bassey Ikpi: 33:02
had a great job. Yeah, yeah, yeah. Um, I'm gonna be so Max Greece also started it off. But I don't really love Greece as much now as I did. What I was a kid, which I hate, I hate like when you start seeing things like, Oh, wait, that's weird, though. That's not really nice. Um, I'm gonna be so mad, I'm gonna leave here and then like, V, like, ultimate faith is gonna black. Really? Bitch, Really? You forgot about me? Um,
Baroness Brée: 33:31
the one play I want to see I haven't seen yet is kinky boots. I love you. I love the movie. Um, I love Todd. Rick Hall, you and the clips that I've seen. He kills. Yeah, so and it's really hard story to tell. So the fact that they got it on Broadway made it a musical, I think Cyndi Lauper, she did from the border. It was amazing. So they don't know. That is one that's on my list that I want to see. Um, what's another one? That another play that I liked that really got me into the adult side of Broadway musicals was a funny thing happened on the way to form. And then when I saw it, it was Nathan Lane as one of the her if a and it was one of those things where it's like, Oh, I'm in New York Oh, there's a $50 sculpture. Let's see what happens in the ticket Actually worked and I got to go in. And so it was just the fact I just respect creative's. I respect the process. I respect practice and as a former dancer, cause I can't sing to save my life. You know, I respect anyone who can sing and holding no and kick their leg and twirl and remembered lines. I'm like a deer in headlights on a podcast, so I could only imagine what it be like in front of the stage of 1,000,000 people. So
Bassey Ikpi: 34:42
I, um I taught myself, like a time step, um, finished, like a shuffle ball change, because I saw Alfonso Ribiero doing, like, press for the tap dance kid. And then he did like a little little dance. And I'm like doing that. Um, yeah, I think I feel like musicals have been part of my life for most of my life, and I didn't realize that that was a thing until I was much older. Bride Love musicals I don't understand. People who don't love him
Baroness Brée: 35:13
as a kid are, um, My mom was a huge Barbra Streisand and she had the Broadway album, and I didn't understand. I just do it sounded pretty so as an adult already knew the words all of these songs. And like, Oh, this waas, this is Fanny Brice. Oh, this is, you know, this is Porky and Bess. This is Oh, I have some culture in my background. I didn't know that. So you know that album and listening to Barbara sing some of those classics, I still listen to put it together every day. I got to do some makeup or do something fancy. That's one of my like, let me be fancy and get myself together type songs. But you know, we need some more about on black and African American Broadway musicals out there. But
Bassey Ikpi: 35:55
that's what I loved about Hamilton. That it was so gave black and round performers and opportunity to just be performer
Baroness Brée: 36:03
colorblind casting was a brilliant idea. Um, the mad they were they were big man, but it's fine. And the Hamilton that was here in D. C. I think his name was like Sean asked in or something like that. He is adorable, and he owned the stage the entire time. And I really respect these. All these actors took these jobs very seriously. The Lafayette character and the Thomas Jefferson character. The gentleman. I don't know his name, but the general who plated in the kid in the angelic a group here that was here in D. C. He killed it. So I think they're in Los Angeles now. But if I could get the Puerto Rico with Lynn to go see Hamilton out,
Bassey Ikpi: 36:43
But they did, they did. They did a taping of the original Brockway cast. They came back for a night and they recorded it. And I just I don't know what they're planning on doing if it is like a year, no, about two years ago. Because that's when after Tony's is when everyone left the cast, Um and, uh, I don't know what they're gonna do with it, but I feel like I don't know, clearly it's not about money, cause you would make all the moneys if he released it. But I hope it's not like some dumb ass archive. And then, like, 200 years like I was, I think I hate when they do that. Hate archives.
Baroness Brée: 37:19
Thank you so much for your time and talking to me about Broadway, musical self care and every other random conversation topic we've bought up today. Now, can you give us the name of your book?
Bassey Ikpi: 37:30
Yes. My book is called I'm Telling the Truth, but I'm lying and it is being published by Harper Perennial.
Baroness Brée: 37:37
And we look forward to seeing that in 2019. Thank you. Future best selling author. Bossy. Claim it. Yes, ma'am. We thank you so much for your time and thank you for joining. Fabulous