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Listen in: Apple Podcasts give pundits of Black America an outlet to be heard

June 23, 2017 GMT

Storytelling in the digital age has been expanding with the availability of new media options, such as podcasting. Earlier this year, Apple officially rebranded its longstanding iTunes Podcasts as “Apple Podcasts.” The name change is reflective of the impact podcasts are having on the listening market. Black voices in news, entertainment and pop culture are utilizing podcasting in innovative ways.

As you prepare for the summer, here’s a short list of pundits that are exploring Black America’s state of mind.

When The Philadelphia Tribune spoke with Julianne Malveaux, host of “It’s Personal with Dr. J,” she explained the show’s title: “The feminist slogan used to be, ‘the personal is political,’ so the show is all personal.” Malveaux also shared that she will release a new show about every 10 days. “Why wait for the mainstream media when there are so many alternatives? This is the true nature of market testing where people can check us out,” said Malveaux, adding, “I am never more comfortable than when I am in front of or when I have a microphone in my hand. That’s my natural space. I am excited about the podcast, and I have been excited since we started working on it.”

Now in its second season, comedians and longtime friends W. Kamau Bell and Hari Kondabolu explore America’s political landscape via their podcast, “Politically Re-Active.” The show description says “the hosts answer questions and separate fact from fake news with help from today’s most fascinating artists, activists, writers, journalists and political thinkers.”

For a behind-the-scenes peep into the world and thinking process of a pair of African-American reporters at the New York Times, check out “Still Processing.” Pulitzer Prize-winning critic-at-large Wesley Morris and staff writer for The New York Times magazine Jenna Wortham “are working it out” as they talk each week about (according to the site description) “the culture of work, dating, the internet and how those all fit together.”

Although Larry Wilmore’s latest offering — “Black on the Air” — is not pitched as a political podcast, the Emmy Award-winning producer, actor and comedian tackles politics and more via his latest media outlet. Wilmore, whose “Nightly Show” television program was canceled last August, has a perspective that examines topics in a way that draws listeners back for more.

What happens when a pop culture icon takes to the mic to discuss the secrets of life with a variety of guests? You get “RuPaul: What’s The Tee? with Michelle Visage.” In its three years on the air, this podcast has covered a wealth of interesting topics while collecting listeners along the way.

There are a variety of ways to subscribe and download podcast episodes straight to your phone, tablet or computer via the many available podcast services, including Apple Podcast, Android and Google Play. Once subscribed, free episodes will automatically download when they’re released.