In today’s Dirty South Club spotlight we give a little bit of shine and love to Fatuma Ife. I learned about Fatuma and her work with Legends Do Live from a family member and I am glad we were able to chat in order to acknowledge her work and get her to share some of her wisdom and love with the club.
I know your name, but what’s your name for the people:
Fatuma Ife. (Pronounced FA-too-muh EE-fee)
And where are you from, are you from Houston:
No in actuality, I am from Brookshire, Texas.
And where is that close to:
Katy! I’m going to say it’s about 9 miles outside of Katy.
Ok. Ok. And what do you do and what inspired you to do it? I know there are a few facets to what you do, but you can go through all of the things you do if you’d like:
Ok! I am President of a non-profit organization called Legends Do Live. The focus of the organization is, we start at age 13 and we go up to 25. We do go outside of that age range sometimes. Studies say that, that’s when we either learn and get set in certain ways or when we make changes. So, we teach community responsibility and also the importance of a legacy. So that’s the focus for Legends Do Live.
Um, I also do marketing. I was in the music industry on a street team, promo work, artist development; I did a little bit of management for over 19 years. I started out as a college intern at No Limit Records in 1997….98. (Laughs) And Mean Green put me on with that. I still do certain projects for people that I know.
I have my own bartending company called Yellow Rose Barsmith and that’s pretty much what I do.
Yea man, you are a busy lady:
(Heavy sigh) Yea. (Laughs) And I’m a single mother so; I have a high-schooler. It gets crazy some days.
The marketing piece, do you have companies that you work with specifically; are you restricted to those companies, or are you open to take on any clients you wish:
Yea, actually I do freelancing now. There was a time when I strictly worked for a major company or several different labels. But now I do a lot of freelance work. I can take on any client, but I tend to like to take on small businesses and independently owned companies because usually they really don’t have the resources, so I understand.
Being in that industry and thinking about the years of experience you have in that, what do you believe is the biggest misconception that people have about marketing:
That it’s something they are not going to have to spend any money on. You know, I don’t know where this came from; that you can make something out of nothing. In some situations, you can do that.
Let’s see what else did I want to ask; what’s the best business or personal advice you’ve ever received:
That’s pretty easy, I was told stay genuine. A mentor told me, what he meant by stay genuine was, you’ve got to be true to yourself first.
For any individual who would like to follow in your footsteps in every arena that you are in, do you have any words of advice or encouragement that you would give them:
For one, preparation precedes presentation, so you want to be sure that you’re prepared. Think of every avenue; everything that might come up. Life gets in the way sometimes, but preparation precedes presentation.
And number two I would say, when you find out your purpose, or once you decide that this is what I want to do; there are going to be so many branches to that tree. My advice is start with one branch, work on one branch and one leaf at a time. Because if you try to take on ten branches or many leaves it’s gonna fall apart; nothing is going to get done and you’re going to get overwhelmed. So, always focus on one thing!
The last thing I would say is, everyone needs a team. You cannot do anything by yourself. Surround yourself with people who will have the same purpose that you have in mind and find out what everyone’s strength is.
How do you define success:
My definition of success is when you have found complete and total peace in what you do. To me, that’s being successful.
What do you like to do for fun, you are always busy so I’m sure you have to make everything fun (Laughs):
Oh…no…no…no! One thing I do believe in is having me some disconnect time! (Laughs) I like to disconnect! I am really into cigars. I like scotch and whiskies. I might go hang out at the Alley Cat, they always have some really great events going down. I just like going somewhere listening to some good music and be able to kick back; that kind of thing. I disconnect at least twice a month.
You’ve got to do that:
You’ve got to, it’s necessary.
What do you love most about the Dirty South:
Let me see, there are so many things that I love about the South! The dialect, the culture, the people, the food! (Laughs) There’s no other place that I can think of in the world that has what we have, I mean, when it comes to the way we talk. Like for instance, just look at Houston as a whole; the North side and the South side is like two different planets, but in the same city. You can’t go anywhere else in the world and get that. Our food, is amazing! And the fact that, there is so much culture here; whether you’re Creole, whether you’re Indian, whether you’re African; I mean so much culture on every corner. That’s what I love about the South. And the men! (Laughs) There is nothing like a brother from the South.
© 2017 C. Huey for Dirty South Club | D$C