We had the good fortune of connecting with Tunde Adigun and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Tunde, can you tell us more about your background and the role it’s played in shaping who you are today?
I am a first generation Nigerian American who was born and raised in Chicago, Illinois. My Nigerian background has had one of the biggest impacts on the person who I am today for several reasons. First and foremost, it has given me a better understanding of myself and the lineage of people that have come from the tribe and culture I originate from. I am a firm believer that; to know where you’re going, you most first recognize and be aware of where you came from, so to be able to say I know about my Nigerian heritage, and I am in tune with the culture gives me great pride. I feel that having Nigerian parents and growing up with a certain understanding of the rules and regulations of the house, my upbringing wasn’t necessarily appreciated by myself and my siblings. While being young at the time I looked at things from a childs perspective, but now as an adult I see that their ways of parenting only later gave me an advantage in life because of my mental structure, toughness, discipline, awareness, and respect that I have for myself and give to others. Being Nigerian gives me an idea and understandings of “what” I am, but being from Chicago, Illinois solidifies the identity of “who” I am. Growing up in Chicago, has molded me and prepared me for the many trials and tribulations that I have faced in my life. It has given me the hustle and survival tactics needed to take on all the obstacles that life and the world have to offer. Chicago has given me something I could never buy, something that can’t be taught, and something that must be proven and that is “the audacity”. Chicago has groomed me so graciously and carefully through so many mishaps, downfalls, upsets, tragedies, and unfortunate situations that it has given me the right to have “the audacity” to think I can take on the world. Chicago has given me “the audacity” to believe in myself and to know that Im destined for greatness in the world, because if you can make it and be successful in Chicago, you can make it anywhere.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
As a stand up Comedian, what sets me apart from other artists and creatives is the fact that I chose the hardest form of entertainment and/or creative expression. Public speaking is one of the most nerve recking things a human being can do, and trying to make a room full of strangers laugh is an even harder and scarier concept. I pride myself on the fact that I’m a professional comedian and not everyone can perform comedy at the level that I can. I’ve been doing stand up comedy for almost 11 years now and it took along time for me to develop the confidence needed to keep believing in myself pass the encouragement of my friends and family. Along the 11 year journey with comedy I’ve come to learn more about my own personality and the picture I paint for people while performing. I’ve been able to identify my voice and how I can make my material connect with the viewing audience. I’ve learned that my story as a first generation Nigerian -American from Chicago, is a lot more relatable to people all across the world more than I could ever imagine. And it is on me to continue to perfect my craft so that I can establish a brand and tell my story so that the supporters and believers of my career would have something to remember me by.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
In Los Angeles, there’s a plethora of things to do and places to go, it really all just depends on the personal preference of the person. If it was up to me, I’d definitely take a friend to three specific areas, and those are: Hollywood, Santa Monica Beach and Downtown LA. First, I’d take them to Hollywood for the typical tourist attraction events so pictures can be taken and buying souvenirs can be done. Next Santa Monica beach should be visited because the scenery along PCH is an amazing view to see and ride along. Last area I would recommend would be Downtown LA, because not only is the nightlife at the clubs and bar a quality experience but also the view of the city at night is magical.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
In life I feel we all have people who are put in our lives to help us, grow, evolve and reach our goals in life. Now for me personally I’ve been blessed with a strong support system that consists of friends, family, and even complete strangers. To try acknowledge a specific person for their efforts in helping me progress in life would be far fetched, seeing as there has been so many people who have been a crucial part in my growth and journey as a man. If I would have to give a specific shoutout to anyone it would have to be God, because of his will and plan for me it has allowed me to identify the allies and messengers that he’s sent to me in the form of good genuine helpful people.