Demola Mako

Tami Makinde @TheNativeMag Is Championing Inclusive Storytelling

Tami Makinde is Nigerian freelance music & culture journalist.

Tami Makinde is a Senior Writer at The Native Mag, a position which she has utilized to break numerous relevant stories. From uplifting female musicians all over Africa to in-depth investigative pieces on Onlyfans, #EndSars, and Rape culture within our own African creative industries, Makinde is paving the way for modern and inclusive storytelling. With bylines in Vogue, VICE, and Femme Mag, this 24-year-old is boldly lending her lens and her pen to traditionally ignored perspectives.

M-How did you become a pop culture journalist?

I don’t think anything really led me per se. Growing up, I wanted to be a news anchor which is another form of storytelling. When it came down to how best I could tap into my strengths and capabilities, becoming a writer in the pop culture space came easily to me. It’s what I’ve done my whole life, tell stories through my words and stay keyed into the African youth culture as a Gen Z myself. I’d say I was born for this role, it’s what I’ve been working towards my entire life. I don’t think anyone has the power to stop me from this trajectory I am on and that’s not me being overconfident. It simply is what it is. I have an incredible sense of belief in myself that I will always succeed and I will go to all the places that have been destined for me and no human being can stop that. 

M-What has been your favorite project that you have worked on to date?

It would definitely be the work we did last year with Platoon and Amaarae curating editorial and video content. She’s amazing and I’m constantly in awe of her craft so to be so heavily involved in the rollout process for The Angel You Don’t Know and learn so much from her and her team was truly invaluable.

M-What’s the best advice you have for budding writers?

I cannot count all the times that self-doubt had me second-guessing my abilities and going through a process where you constantly dim your own light so yes, to survive in the industry, you need to not only have a strong sense of self but you also need to pay attention to your mind and how you deal with intrusive thoughts. Listen to your voice, please. Don’t let criticism or jealousy weigh you down. Your journey is going to be vastly different from any other journo, don’t look to anyone but yourself. This has been the defining advice that has helped me these past few years.

M-What keeps you going? How do you stay on top of your game? 

Firstly, the amazing network of women that I have built and worked with over the years. They have inspired me in so many ways that they will never know. Because we have created this space where women are welcome and they can thrive, what stops me from also thriving and being the best? Nothing. I also want to be better than my last attempt; to consistently show that I am still very much a student of the game as I learn invaluable life-long tools that will keep me ahead.

M-What can we do to support inclusive storytelling?

Give the stories to those who live and breathe these experiences daily. The answer to how do we get more inclusive storytelling or make space for more women in the entertainment industry is simply to give the reins over to the women and other marginalized communities that deserve to see their experiences shown in popular culture. If you have the power to bring as many people in the same door as you, then what’s stopping you?

M-What does the future look like for Tami Makinde?

Haha, I’m just killing shit I guess. I can’t tell you some elaborate 5-year plan down to the tee but I can promise you that my next moves will be as maddening and eclectic as my personality–for anyone who knows me well enough. I want to do everything and anything, but I can’t possible so I’ll start somewhere today, tomorrow, right now, forever, I’ll be counting on myself and my abilities to get me ahead.

Connect with Tami Makinde here.

The iMullar is the definitive voice of emerging African music and the lifestyle that surrounds it, showcasing exceptional talent from all around the globe focused on promoting the most distinctive new artists and original sounds, we are the authority on who is next.