The Black One is a weekly podcast that began in 2013. It’s only goal ever was to be an entertaining and interesting alternative to the popular media outlets whose highest level of programming for Black people is when The View lets Tyra co-host. It is alternately intelligent, infuriatingly ignorant, hilarious, sad, introspective and disrespectful.
It is impossible for me to list all my favorite episodes, but I am going to try. The top ten episodes were voted on by a panel of one – ME.
10. Episode # 4 – Religion Wrecks and Drum Majors On my way to Barack Obama’s 2nd Inauguration, I stopped by my longtime friend Lionel Means Jr’s home and we discussed organized religion, politics, and life.
Highlight: The episode takes a turn when Lionel tells the most beautifully inspiring story about almost losing his life after a night of drunken revelry.
9. Episode #47 – Black People. Silver Screen Comedian and Poet BStuc (who has since become a partner and host of two other podcasts on The Black One Network) sits down to talk about the portrayal of Black People on TV and movies.
Highlight: The discussion of the failure of Tyler Perry
8. Episode # 20 – This Woman’s Twerk A open, intelligent and no-holds-barred conversation with a stripper about how she became a dancer and why she liked it.
Highlight: One of the first question I asked was “why did you become a stripper?” and her answer was indicative of what the entire interview would be like.
7. Episodes 24 & 25 – Losing My Religion – Parts 1 &2 OK, OK. I know technically this is two episodes, but when I sat down with Annalise Fonza to talk about how she went from law school to becoming an ordained minister, to leading a congregation of thousands, to becoming an atheist – it wouldn’t fit into one episode.
Highlight: The story of her come-to-Jesus moment
6. Episodes # 54 & 55 – The Most Interesting Man In The World – Parts 1&2 – This is a selfish pick for two reasons:
1. I love the conversations with Orron Kenyetta
2. This is a friendship that you can actually follow on this podcast. Our first conversation ever was in episode 6 – …and Rainbows and he has become one of the most frequent and favorite guests of the show.
Highlight: Excerpts from his stage show “Whatever Happened to Officer Friendly?”
5. Waldorf and Statler Bomb The BET Awards… AGAIN Every year we do a live simulcast that pokes fun at the ignorance of the BET Hip Hop Awards.
Highlight: BStuc doing the gospel choir versions of trap music hip hop songs during commercials.
4. Episode #76 & 77 – Freedom Fighters in Ferguson – Again, I’m cheating. The Black One has been live in Ferguson twice ( Episode #88 – Hands up! Don’t Loot!)and was on the scene at the uprising in Baltimore, (Episode # 106 – Thug is the New Black) but this is the episode that started listeners to ask us to go to those places and tell the real stories.
Highlight: Young men who were Mike Brown’s neighbors talk about the police presence in their neighborhood
3. Episode #2 – Lost and Turned Out – Toni Shealey tells a life story that is almost impossible to believe, yet it is true.
Highlight: Her explanation of the con game.
2. Episode #49 – The Place That Pushed Back Time – A documentary-style expose about an Alabama county trying to reinstitute segregation.
Highlight: The voice at the beginning of the 3rd segment chastising the school board would go on to organize the 50th Anniversary of the March on Selma.
1. Episode #96 – Robin and Tiffany (Remastered) – The tragic and personal story of a murder in my family
Highlight: The end of the story
The Tragic Disappearance of Tina and Trina – a woman dealing with breast cancer
And When The Train Stops – Art Bacon tells how he almost lost his life trying to integrate an all-white waiting room at a train station.
White Power Outage – White separatist and leader of the “White Man’s March” talks about his beliefs
Sugar Sex and Hopelessness – An Unbelievable story of a woman emerging from being a child prostitute to her emergence as a successful entrepreneur.