Tameka “Tiny” Harris has something to say.
And she and her famous friends hope you’ll be listening… and watching.
After dreaming for years of her own talk show, Tiny’s vision has come to fruition. On Monday, her year-end pop culture review special Tiny Tonight airs on VH1 (10 p.m. EST)—the same network that airs her popular reality show, T.I. & Tiny: The Family Hustle.
Tiny will be joined by Tamar Braxton (from WE tv’s Tamar & Vince), rapper Trina and TV personality Claudia Jordan. The female foursome will be chatting about all the politics, entertainment, fashion and celebrity relationships that went down in 2012.
EBONY.com talks with the petite reality star about the special.
EBONY: Why a talk-show special? You’ve been talking about this for a while now.
Tiny: It was just an idea that I’ve been talking about doing for a long, long time with my good friend, Tamar Braxton. We wanted to do a talk show and make it young and youthful. I’m just so happy that VH1 was open to the process.
EBONY: The premiere show is a special, right?
Tiny: Yes. The first show will be a recap of 2012. We’ll be talking about all of the big events that happened in the year.
EBONY: How did you prepare yourself to get into talk-show hostess mode?
Tiny: I studied. They would send me notes on what’s going on, and we would pitch in and talk about what we wanted to talk about on the show. I just really did my homework. It was more like a real job for me. Doing this talk show was like, “Wow, this is what they do?!” I can’t even imagine doing it every day. There’s a lot of work that goes into it.
EBONY: So if the show gets picked up, how often will you do it?
Tiny: Probably once a week.
EBONY: You once told me that you’ve always been the go-to girl in your crew. You’re the advice giver. Will that be your role in this show?
Tiny: Yep. It’s still that way. I’m always giving out advice. People always come to me for that. And I keep it real too. On the show, you’re going to see us chatting as homegirls and hearing our input, our insight. And we are just laughing, we’re talking, we argue a little here and there, because everybody don’t agree. But we have fun, and that’s just what happens when ladies get together. You’re going to see a lot of funny moments in there, especially with the cast I have.
EBONY: You wear many different hats: wife, momager, mother, reality star. And now you’re adding talk show host. How do you prioritize?
Tiny: Family’s always first. God and family, and I go from there. A lot of my work is done around my kids, with my kids, so that’s a big help. And when it’s not, I have help—like my sister-in-law, my brother and my sister. It’s family. I keep family close.
EBONY: What’s the best advice that you’ve given to some of your single girlfriends about trying to have it all?
Tiny: When you get a man, you have to nurture him. Treat him like a king. If you put that little work in in the beginning, it pays off.
EBONY: Because of the reality show, your kids are interested in acting and show business. Will you be everyone’s manager?
Tiny: The youngest one, he doesn’t really say what he wants to do. But I think he definitely should get into it, ’cause he would be great! And I’m not sure if I will manage all of them. I’m not going to give ’em all the way up, but I don’t know if I’d want to fully manage their careers. My daughter and her group, the OMG Girlz, are signed to my label though.
EBONY: What’s the best advice that you’ve given her? As Miss Star, Zonnique is following in your footsteps almost identically in some ways.
Tiny: Just [to] never lose who she is. Stay the person that she is and never lose sight of that, for one. And to learn the business as she goes. Don’t just be in the business and have fun ’cause you’re a kid. You’ve gotta learn; this is your livelihood. I just want her to be the best she can be in everything she does. I try to motivate her in giving her the confidence and the things she needs to help her along her way.
EBONY: And what about for you? After Xscape, are you all done making music?
Tiny: Some days I’ll be like, “You know what? Why don’t I go to my daughter’s studio and make a song?!” And then I don’t! I don’t know if I would have all the time it takes to put into a song.
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EBONY Entertainment Editor