*New York – iHeartMedia, the No. 1 commercial podcast publisher globally according to Podtrac, and Charlamagne Tha God, one of the most influential and authoritative voices in media, announced today a historic joint venture partnership to launch “The Black Effect Podcast Network.”
The Black Effect Podcast Network is positioned to become the world’s largest podcast publisher dedicated to Black listeners, bringing together the most influential and trusted voices in black culture for stimulating conversations around social justice, pop culture, sports, mental health, news, comedy and more.
The multi-genre venture will feature a luminous roster of marquee talent and culture-shifting voices committed to enlightening, educating and entertaining audiences curated by Charlamagne himself. The programming will provide a bridge to understanding information and interaction rooted in diverse perspectives.
“Blackness has an immediate, culture shifting effect on everything,” said Charlamagne. “Blackness controls the cool. Blackness is the culture, but Black Voices are not monolithic. The only way to appreciate the diversity of thought and experiences in Black culture is to build a platform for those voices to be heard. Unapologetically Black experiences, unapologetically Black thought, unapologetically Black ideas. Black, Black, Blackity Black, Black, Black, Black. Everything Black. Black Everything. The vision for The Black Effect is to amplify, elevate, and empower emerging and established talent. Our goal is to shift the narrative from Black creators signing transactional deals, to instead forming legacy partnerships that build generational wealth while allowing each creative to have an equitable stake in their future. As a long-time partner of iHeart, it’s an honor to make history with them.”
The Black Effect Podcast Network creatives will include comedian/actress Jess Hilarious, Social Justice Activist Tamika Mallory, American attorney and TV Host Eboni K. Williams and many more. The Black Effect Podcast Network has also partnered with other widely successful podcasts like “All The Smoke,” “Drink Champs” and “The 85 South Show,” and will debut with 18 podcasts this fall on iHeartRadio and everywhere podcasts are available.
Additionally, Charlamagne’s wildly popular, co-anchored, nationally syndicated radio show, “The Breakfast Club,” will bring its replay podcast to The Black Effect Podcast Network as its flagship show, effective immediately. With over 4.5 million weekly listeners, “The Breakfast Club” has become the most sought after media destination for A-list talent and influential thought leaders.
“As our country’s number one audio company and podcaster, we have both the responsibility and the opportunity to give new voices a massive audience platform for creativity and innovation—and for important ideas that need to be heard,” said Bob Pittman, Chairman and CEO of iHeartMedia. “Charlamagne Tha God is an unparalleled multi-platform creator whose impact extends across radio, digital, social, TV, events and podcasts. He is uniquely qualified to bring The Black Effect Podcast Network to life, and we are lucky and honored to be his chosen partner and to continue our successful partnership of over a decade in this exciting and fast-growing arena.”
The Black Effect Podcast Network will also produce exciting limited series podcasts in conjunction with various high wattage creators and talent, musical artists, actors, actresses, sports and literary superstars to support their upcoming films, music releases and related projects.
All shows on The Black Effect Podcast Network will be distributed through the iHeartPodcast Network which is home to more than 750 original podcasts. With over 225 million downloads each month, iHeartRadio is the leading podcast publisher according to Podtrac, with a substantial lead over the next largest commercial podcaster. iHeartPodcasts span every category from business, sports, spirituality and technology to entertainment, family, comedy and true crime – and everything in between – making iHeartRadio the largest publisher of podcast content in the world. iHeartPodcasts are distributed on all major podcast platforms, including the iHeartRadio app.
PepsiCo Beverages, in collaboration with its agency partner OMD, has signed on as an inaugural partner of The Black Effect Podcast Network with others to be announced. “We knew we wanted to support this groundbreaking partnership as soon as Charlamagne and iHeart shared their vision for the network. This opportunity connects our brands to consumers through the newer trusted medium of podcasting, and more importantly, supports the overall PepsiCo strategic initiative to invest in Black communities and support diverse voices,” said Katie Haniffy, PepsiCo Beverages Head of Media. “We’ve had the pleasure of collaborating with Charlamagne in the past and look forward to our continued partnership with him and iHeartMedia on this incredibly exciting venture.”
The Black Effect Podcast Network launch lineup will include:
“Drink Champs” with N.O.R.E and DJ EFN
“All The Smoke” with Matt Barnes
“The 85 South Show” with Karlous Miller, DC Young Fly and Chico Bean
“Whoreible Decisions” with Mandii B and Weezy
“Dropping Gems” with Devi Brown
“Holding Court” with Eboni K. Williams
“Carefully Reckless” with Jess Hilarious
“Street Politicians” with Tamika Mallory and Mysonne
“Hot Happy Mess” with Zuri Hall
“Untitled” with Bonang Matheba
“Hello Somebody” with Senator Nina Turner
“P.O.D.” with Ashley and Tammy
“Straight Shot No Chaser” with Tezlyn Figaro
“Laugh and Learn” with Flame Monroe (executive produced by Tiffany Haddish)
“Checking In” with Michelle Williams
“Cut To It” with Steve Smith Sr.
“No Ceilings” with Glasses Malone
“Gangster Chronicles” with MC Eiht, James McDonald and Norman Steele
Fans can go to iHeart.com/apps to download and listen on all their favorite devices — including smart speakers, digital auto dashes, tablets, wearables, smartphones, virtual assistants, televisions, gaming consoles and more.
iHeartMedia (NASDAQ: IHRT) is the number one audio company in the United States, reaching nine out of 10 Americans every month – and with its quarter of a billion monthly listeners, has a greater reach than any other media company in the U.S. The company’s leadership position in audio extends across multiple platforms, including more than 850 live broadcast stations in over 160 markets nationwide; through its iHeartRadio digital service available across more than 250 platforms and 2,000 devices; through its influencers; social; branded iconic live music events; other digital products and newsletters; and podcasts as the #1 commercial podcast publisher. iHeartMedia also leads the audio industry in analytics, targeting and attribution for its marketing partners with its SmartAudio product, using data from its massive consumer base. Visit iHeartMedia.com for more company information.
About Charlamagne Tha God
Charlamagne Tha God is one of the most potent, influential, and authoritative voices in media today. He is the widely coveted, outspoken, thought-provoking co-host of the hottest nationally-syndicated radio show in the U.S., ‘The Breakfast Club,’ heard by over 4.5 million listeners each week. Charlamagne’s production company, CTHAGOD World Productions, discovers and advocates for original content and emerging talent who resonate with popular culture long before they are recognized mainstream. A cultural architect and executive producer, Charlamagne is the co-host of the popular podcast, ‘Brilliant Idiots,’. He is a New York Times bestselling author of the book, ‘Black Privilege’ and global bestseller ‘Shook One,’ which propelled him to become one of the world’s leading voices in the mental health discussion. Charlamagne will be inducted into the Radio Hall of Fame in October.
About The Black Effect Podcast Network
The Black Effect Podcast Network is a transformative network founded by renowned cultural architect, executive producer, bestselling author, and media mogul Charlamagne Tha God. In an historic joint venture with the world’s number one commercial podcast publisher, iHeartMedia, Charlamagne and iHeartMedia created the groundbreaking first-ever Black Effect Podcast Network, celebrating the most important Black culture-shapers on the planet—in education, politics, entertainment, sports and pop culture. The Black Effect Podcast Network gives rise to emerging and established content creators and storytellers whose perspective and creative vision have been marginalized and overlooked while serving an audience that has been underserved. The Black Effect Podcast Network helps its partners define their place in culture through influence, ideas, and experiences that engage, inspire, inform and empower.
Global Brand Strategist
The Britto Agency
EVP of Communications
Male Model and Dancer in Janet Jackson’s ‘What Have You Done for Me Lately’ Video is Now a WOMAN / LOOK
*In the late 1980s, Rudy Houston was a well-recognized and talented model and dancer, perhaps best remembered as the leading man in Janet Jackson’s “What Have You Done For Me Lately” video.
He was the guy that women went crazy over because of his looks and dance moves. Houston was also the man who singer Pebbles was asking in her song, “Mercedes Boy,” if he wanted to ride with her in the song’s video, released in 1988.
While Rudy Houston was his name back in the day, today, he is a she…and goes by the name Lana Houston.
And according to Lana Houston, she is now “all-woman” in every sense of the phrase.
WHOAH! DID U SEE THIS? Ex-NBAer Zach Rudolph Files for Divorce Weeks After Tweeting ‘I Married A Ho’
Her sex change journey has been a long road, which for the most part, remained out of the media’s broad reach, until now because Houston is back and wants the world to know.
“Yes, it is true that I have transitioned from male to female,” Houston said in a statement that appears on I Love Old School Music’s website. “I began my transition from male to female in 1995. I needed time away from the entertainment industry to find my inner peace and embark on my intense and wonderful journey to womanhood. I am finally at peace. I am currently residing in L.A., where I work as an artist painting portraits and abstracts.”
Houston said she is grateful for her sex transition and to have fans. She is also looking for songwriters and music producers to collaborate with.
“Thanks to all those who were concerned about my whereabouts,” Houston said. “I’m back from the ‘dead.’ ”
Kristen Welker: Presidential Debate Moderator is One Bad-azz Sista!
*OK Kristen Welker, let us join the chorus of praise you are getting for your stellar job of moderating Thursday night’s presidential debate. In fact, one of the participants owes you an apology. We’ll get to that later.
For those experiencing Welker for the first time and don’t anything about her, she grew up in Philadelphia and graduated from Harvard in 1998. She became NBC’s White House Correspondent in 2011, and was recently named co-anchor of NBC show Weekend Today.
Welker, 44, is only the second black woman to moderate a presidential debate alone. The first was ABC News journalist Carole Simpson in 1992.
Earlier this month, two other journalists tried their hands at moderating and it didn’t turn out so well for them. Fox News’ Chris Wallace caught heat for his moderation of the first Trump-Biden debate, while USA Today’s Susan Page was also criticized for her handling of the vice-presidential debate between Mike Pence and Kamala Harris.
Even Wallace admitted he was “jealous.” During Fox News’ post-debate coverage, in so many words he said he wishes it was him instead of Welker at last night’s debate:
“I would have liked to have been able to moderate that debate and to get a real exchange of views instead of hundreds of interruptions.”
But in all honesty, Welker didn’t have a complete fool in Donald Trump to deal with like Wallace did. In any event, it’s obvious Welker didn’t want to deal with the BS Wallace had to deal with, as she was praised specifically for managing to keep the Trump and Biden in line, and controlling the conversation – though she did have the advantage of the candidates being muted during each others’ allotted two minutes.
Meanwhile, fellow journalists are also praising Welker’s performance. NBC’s Chief White House Correspondent Hallie Jackson called it “a career-defining moment,” while another sista, Fox News anchor Harris Faulkner said she “gave the American people a real debate.”
Also, PBS White House Correspondent Yamiche Alcindor said she was “beaming” watching Welker.
I’m beaming watching Kristen Welker. Such an amazing moment for her and for all who know of her hard work and dedication to journalism. Go girl!
— Yamiche Alcindor (@Yamiche) October 23, 2020
Author Brigitte Gabriel said she did a better job than Wallace, and one person went so far as to suggest she deserved a medal for her performance.
Get this woman a goddam medal.
Kristen Welker was amazing at this #PresidentialDebate2020
— Kimberly Saltz (@_AttorneyAtPaw) October 23, 2020
And despite calling Welker “terrible and unfair” ahead before the debate, Trump took time during the debate to praise the moderator’s performance.
“By the way, so far I respect very much the way you’re handling this,” he said.
And for even those words of praise to come out of HIS mouth is nothing short of a miracle and is the closest thing resembling an apology to ever come from Donald Trump.
Dayuuuum Kristen, you are one bad-azz sista!
Pastor Cal Keeps Love Alive on ‘Married at First Sight’ (EUR EXCLUSIVE!)
*For 11 seasons, “Married at First Sight” (MAFS) has been the ultimate experiment in matchmaking as couples who have never met – complete strangers – tie the knot.
If you are not familiar with the popular Lifetime series, people looking for love are matched by relationship experts (Dr. Pepper Schwartz, Dr. Viviana Coles, and Pastor Calvin Roberson-known as Pastor Cal) and agree to tie the knot before meeting their mates.
The show follows the couples for a few weeks as they experience their first meeting at their weddings, their honeymoons, meeting each other’s families, and other milestone events all the while being counseled by the experts. At the end of each season, the couples are given the chance to continue in their marriage or get a divorce.
While some may question the show’s premise, the EUR spoke to Pastor Cal recently and he said the series is genuine.
“My job on the show is to get these couples, put them together, and make sure they stay together,” said Pastor Cal. “My goal is to look at their differences, see where they’re compatible, counsel them and in some cases, threaten them, to make it work. All the experts, our focus, is simply making sure the couples stay together.”
As for a method in which the couples are matched, he added, “There isn’t a solid formula we apply to every couple. It has to be tweaked as we find out people’s peculiarities. It can be nerve-wracking but it’s rewarding in the end.”
Like many MAFS seasons, there are surprising revelations and this one, featuring couples from New Orleans, is no exception.
“Season 11 has brought us so many surprises,” Pastor Cal said. “Even in casting, one of the couples we thought would get along much quicker is one of the ones lagging behind. And one couple we thought would move slower to intimacy are moving ahead. And that’s with Miles and Karen being the slower and Woody and Amani being the faster of the two.”
He continued, “Also, by my own admission, I fall on the sword on this one, I was not expecting Bennett and Amelia to get along so well. I thought she would be put off more by his lack of profession. It was a big surprise to me.”
The next MAFS season will include Atlanta couples and after that the show heads to Houston, which is casting now. Pastor Cal told the EUR that the show adapts to the couples from each city.
“I believe that every city we film in brings a certain flavor and the participants from that city take on the flavor from that city,” Pastor Cal said. “New Orleans is laid-back, they party, and it’s a very fun city as opposed to a city like D.C. that is very political, buttoned up, and tight. But definitely we found that every city influences the participants. We definitely see different personalities coming out of each city.”
Speaking of Atlanta, Pastor Cal is the lead pastor at Progression church in the peach city. He and his wife Wendy have a marriage coaching organization that offers marriage and relationship conferences, boot camps, and seminars worldwide.
While COVID-19 may have slowed down the in-person events, that has not stopped people from contacting Pastor Cal for love connections, “Because of COVID, we’re online. I get more people through DM’s, email, etc. asking me to match them.”
And how does the church feel about the show?
“My church actually loves it.” Pastor Cal said. “They are so supportive and such an incredible group of people. They tell people about the show. Our church was actually founded on relationships, so it was an easy fit. Our church was founded on positive marriage and positive family.”
Look out for Pastor Cal’s book, “Marriage Ain’t for Punks,” slated to come out next year.
If you are interested in being on “Married at First Sight” and live in Houston, click here to apply.
For more information on MAFS’ current season, click here.
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