Entertainment

Check Out These 20 Latino Podcasts To Help You Make It Through The Holidays

There’s nothing more comforting and empowering than hearing people of your community speak on issues that impact your communities. This Christmas, while you sip your champurrado, coquito, crema de vie, or whatever holiday drink you gravitate towards. Here are some Latino-run podcasts to connect you to your community wherever you are as you celebrate the holidays.

Latinos Who Lunch

@latinoswholunch / Instagram

I mean, what Latino doesn’t, but these New Mexico residents, Justin Favela (FavyFav) and Emanuel Ortega (Babelito), will elevate your lunch hour. One is an artist and the other a curator, both of whom are hilarious, queer and brilliant. Grab a taco and season your ears.

Bag Ladiez

BagLadiez

Estephanie and Lena are God’s gift to all of us. These two Bronx-based Afro-Dominicans will actually make you crack up while they “just tryna be better and make you better too, join usssss as we try to get rid of our baggage cuz deadass that stuff is heavy af.”

Their episode titles tell it all: “Serena Let Us Know if We Should Pull Up” and “If You Waited in Line to Buy Jordans, You Can Go Vote.”

Nos Vemos en el Swap Meet

@nosvemosenelswapmeet / Instagram

Are you a shy introvert who thrives off hearing the drama and conversations safe on the outside? Luis Octavio is your guy to overhear his conversations with folks at swap meets across Southern California.

Radio Menea

@radiomenea / Instagram

Co-hosted by Verónica Bayetti Flores and Miriam Zoila Pérez, two women with very different music preferences, this podcast will fill the hole in your musical heart that Justin Bieber created. They bring in the oldies and help you discover new artists from all over Latin America that will make you dance in your seat all the way to work.

Allegedly NYC

@allegedlynyc / Instagram

These two New Yorkers Nomi Ruiz and Ava Sanjurjo are just here to spill tea. They’re like a living breathing “overheardinNYC” podcast that can also catch you up on all the new slang (i.e. Slang Sessions). They’ll keep you young.

NPR’s Latino USA

Spotify

If you listen to New York Times’ The Daily, you’ll want to follow that up with Latino USA. NPR’s award winning journalist Maria Hinojosa offers Latino Americans the content we deserve. She doesn’t just offer breaking news. She interviews the Latinos whose perspective we can relate with and need to hear.

Anzaldúing It

@anzalduingit / Instagram

If you don’t know Gloria Anzaldúa, a Latinx Heritage Month icon, listen up. Anzaldúa famously wrote about “La Frontera,” and the borders that language creates around gender, identity and more. Queer soul friends Angélica Becerra and Jackie Cáraves Anzaldú it like nobody else (except maybe Gloria Anzaldúa) in breaking down how we live and switch into different identities as Latinx Americans.

Super Mamas

@_supermamas / Instagram

Bricia and Paulina Lopez are sisters by blood and as co-hosts of the Super Mamas podcast that supplies the huge demand for Latina mothers to hear their experience in America mirrored. As you can imagine, topics range from the struggle of raising bilingual children, of maintaining Latino culture while assimilating their kids in America, and so much more.

Bitter Brown Femmes

@bitterbrownfemmes / Instagram

Ruben and Cassandra are here to (in their own words) “dismantle -isms while running their mouths.” They release a new podcast about once a month, with titles like, “Abolish ICE, Then We’ll Talk” and “Where Does the Gay Go?” The bitterness is just so relatable.

Bodega Boys

Bodega Boys / Soundcloud

Boys, listen up, Desus Nice and Joel Martinez are actual comedians in the Bronx with a Viceland late night show, “Desus & Mero.” When you’re not risking your life by watching the show in your phone in your car, you can listen to them on their OG platform: Bodega Boys.

Café con Pam

@cafeconpampodcast / Instagram

Miami based Pam keeps it real about that bilingual life of constantly saying “come se dice,” what it’s like living in this new Latinx culture that is also so very American, and all of this while drinking Cafe Bustelo.

Café con Pam is wildly popular, explicit and riveting. Every episode she interviews a new barrier breaker on topics ranging from dreams, sex, politics and mental health.

In the Thick Show

@inthethickshow / Instagram

Self described as “journalists of color tell you what you’re missing from the mainstream news.” Award-winning journalists Maria Hinojosa and Julio Ricardo Varela talk about what nobody else wants to talk about, including in depth investigation on the ground in Puerto Rico one year after Hurricane Maria.

Latino Rebels

@LatinoRebels / Instagram

Latino Rebels is increible. They really do push boundaries in calling out machismo and even interviewing a Latino worker that once worked for an anti-immigration organization. Listen up.

Let There Be Luz

@lettherebeluz / Instagram

We are aware of all the trend into astrological awareness that we all grew up with. Somos brujas. Let There Be Luz aims for their podcast to “create a space where we can make personal strides, learn to trust our inner guidance and move towards our deepest desires.”

Linda Garcia is talking to women to reclaim our menstruation as a gift, our yonis as our spirital guides and the power of femininity.

Locatora Radio

@locatora_radio / Instagram

Looking for a genderqueer Latinx podcast to validate your experience as a brown bruja who hates gender norms? Mala y Diosa are here for you to peel the layers of the performance of femininity, which is so high for Latinas, mental health, trauma and sexuality.

Latina Theory

@lianirey / Instagram

Latina Theory is for you Latinos who don’t live in Los Angeles or New York. Maria Isa and Arianna Genis live in Minnesota. That’s right. Hear their perspective in perfect Spanglish on (you guessed it) Latina Theory.

Radio Ambulante

@radioambulante / Instagram

Daniel Alarcón and Carolina Guerrero are here to give you the news in Latin America, so we don’t stay in our American bubble por siempre. Plus, they’re trying to bring longform back by giving you detailed, in depth investigative stories. Listen to this award winning Spanish-language podcast to hear about everything from used book-sellers in Bogotá to metal music in the ’80s and ’90s in Havana.

Tamarindo Podcast

@tamarindopodcast / Instagram

These two Angelenos, Melinna Bobadilla and Brenda Gonzalez, unpack every issue Latinos in Los Angeles have to deal with, including even the term “Latinx.” They self describe as “a socially conscious talk show with a Latino vibe.” They talk about Mexican-Arab influences, how to love our noses, and decolonizing our beauty and diets, as well as titles like “What in the Actual Hell: US Immigration in 2018.”

Wait, Hold Up

@waitholduppod / Instagram

Yarel Ramos and Jessica Molina have no limits on what’s on the table to discuss. Every episode will either talk about the latest major “wait, hold up” moment or interview a Latinx that experienced their own “wait, hold up” moment that changed their lives. Learn from other people’s experiences, people.

Cerebronas

Cerebronas

These cerebronas are casual Yale and Stanford law students from working class immigrant families. They started this podcast to democratize knowledge and unpack their sh*t. Sometimes, they break down interesting immigration cases, and other times they talk about intergenerational trauma.


READ: Two Latinx Women Are Tackling Major Issues In Their Community One Podcast At A Time

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America Ferrera Celebrates 20th Anniversary Of Working On ‘Gotta Kick It Up’ With Sweet IG Post

Entertainment

America Ferrera Celebrates 20th Anniversary Of Working On ‘Gotta Kick It Up’ With Sweet IG Post

It has been 20 years since America Ferrera’s dream of becoming an actor back true. She took to Instagram to reflect on the moment that her dream started to come true and it is a sweet reminder that anyone can chase their dreams.

America Ferrera shared a sweet post reflecting on the 20th anniversary of working on “Gotta Kick It Up!”

“Gotta Kick It Up!” was one of the earliest examples of Latino representation so many of us remember. The movie follows a school dance team trying to be the very best they could possibly be. The team was down on their luck but a new teacher introduces them to a different kind of music to get them going again.

After being introduced to Latin beats, the dance team is renewed. It taps into a cultural moment for the Latinas on the team and the authenticity of the music makes their performances some of the best.

While the movie meant so much to Latino children seeing their culture represented for the first time, the work was a major moment for Ferrera. In the Instagram post, she gushes over the celebrities she saw on the lot she was working on. Of course, anyone would be excited to see Jennifer Aniston and Brad Pitt hanging out. Yet, what stands out the most is Ferrera’s own excitement to realize that she can make money doing what she loves most.

“I wish I could go back and tell this little baby America that the next 20 years of her life will be filled with unbelievable opportunity to express her talent and plenty of challenges that will allow her to grow into a person, actress, producer, director, activist that she is very proud and grateful to be. We did it baby girl. I’m proud of us,” Ferrera reflects.

Watch the trailer for “Gotta Kick It Up!” here.

READ: America Ferrera’s “Superstore” Is Going To Get A Spanish-Language Adaptation In A Win For Inclusion

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This Artist Has Been Breaking Barriers As A Non-Traditional Mariachi

Entertainment

This Artist Has Been Breaking Barriers As A Non-Traditional Mariachi

On a recent episode of ABC’s game show To Tell The Truth, three celebrity panelists were tasked to uncover the identity of a real mariachi singer.

Each contender embodied “non-traditional” attributes of mariachi culture either through physical appearance or language barriers, leaving the panelists stumped.

When it came time for the big reveal, with a humble smile 53-year-old Timoteo “El Charro Negro” stood up wowing everyone. Marveled by his talents, Timoteo was asked to perform unveiling his smooth baritone voice.

While not a household name in the U.S., his career spans over 25 years thriving on the catharsis of music.

Timoteo “El Charro Negro” performing “Chiquilla Linda” on Dante Night Show in 2017.

Originally from Dallas, Texas, Timoteo, born Timothy Pollard, moved to Long Beach, California with his family when he was eight years old. The move to California exposed Pollard to Latin culture, as the only Black family in a Mexican neighborhood.

As a child, he recalled watching Cantinflas because he reminded him of comedian Jerry Lewis, but musically he “got exposed to the legends by chance.”

“I was bombarded by all the 1960s, ’70s, and ’50s ranchera music,” Timoteo recalls to mitú.

The unequivocal passion mariachi artists like Javier Solis and Vicente Fernandez possessed heavily resonated with him.

“[The neighbors] always played nostalgic music, oldies but goodies, and that’s one thing I noticed about Mexicans,” Timoteo says. “They can be in their 20s but because they’ve grown up listening to the oldies it’s still very dear to them. That’s how they party.”

For as long as he can remember, Pollard “was born with the genetic disposition to love music,” knowing that his future would align with the arts.

After hearing Vicente Fernandez sing “Lástima Que Seas Ajena,” an awakening occurred in Pollard. While genres like hip-hop and rap were on the rise, Pollard’s passion for ranchera music grew. It was a moment when he realized that this genre best suited his big voice.

Enamored, Pollard began to pursue a career as a Spanish-language vocalist.

El Charro Negro
Photo courtesy of Timothy Pollard.

At 28, Timoteo began learning Spanish by listening and singing along to those artists he adored in his youth.

“When I decided that I wanted to be a mariachi, I didn’t think it was fair to exploit the culture and not understand the language,” he says. “If I’m going to sing, I need to be able to communicate with my audience and engage with them. I need to understand what I’m saying because it was about honor and respect.”

Pollard began performing local gigs after picking up the language in a matter of months. He soon attracted the attention of “Big Boy” Radio that adorned him the name Timoteo “El Charro Negro.”

Embellishing his sound to highlight his Black heritage, Pollard included African instruments like congas and bongos in his orchestra. Faintly putting his own spin on a niche genre, Pollard avoided over-saturating the genre’s sound early in his career.

Embraced by his community as a beloved mariachi, “El Charro Negro” still encountered race-related obstacles as a Black man in the genre.

“There are those [in the industry] who are not in the least bit thrilled to this day. They won’t answer my phone calls, my emails, my text messages I’ve sent,” he says. “The public at large hasn’t a problem with it, but a lot of the time it’s those at the helm of decision making who want to keep [the genre] exclusively Mexican.”

“El Charro Negro” persisted, slowly attracting fans worldwide while promoting a message of harmony through his music.

In 2007, 12 years into his career, Pollard received a golden ticket opportunity.

El Charro Negro
Pollard (left) seen with legendary Mexican artist Vicente Fernandez (right) in 2007. Photo courtesy of Timothy Pollard.

In a by-chance encounter with a stagehand working on Fernandez’s tour, Pollard was offered the chance to perform onstage. The singer was skeptical that the offer was legit. After all, what are the chances?

The next day Pollard went to his day job at the time and said, “a voice in my head, which I believe was God said, ‘wear your blue velvet traje tonight.'”

That evening Pollard went to a sold-out Stockton Area where he met his idol. As he walked on the stage, Pollard recalls Fernandez insisting that he use his personal mic and band to perform “De Que Manera Te Olvido.”

“[Fernandez] said he did not even want to join me,” he recollects about the show. “He just was kind and generous enough to let me sing that song on his stage with his audience.”

The crowd applauded thunderously, which for Pollard was a sign of good things to come.

El Charro Negro
Timoteo “El Charro Negro” with Don Francisco on Don Francisco Presenta in 2011. Photo courtesy of Timothy Pollard.

In 2010, he released his debut album “Me Regalo Contigo.” In perfect Spanish, Pollard sings with great conviction replicating the soft tones of old-school boleros.

Unraveling the rollercoaster of relationships, heart-wrenchingly beautiful ballads like “Me Regalo Contigo” and “Celos” are his most streamed songs. One hidden gem that has caught the listener’s attention is “El Medio Morir.”

As soon as the track begins it is unlike the others. Timoteo delivers a ’90s R&B love ballad in Spanish, singing with gumption as his riffs and belts encapsulate his unique sound and story.

Having appeared on shows like Sabado Gigante, Don Francisco Presenta, and Caso Cerrado in 2011, Timoteo’s career prospered.

Timoteo hasn’t released an album since 2010 but he keeps his passion alive. The singer has continued to perform, even during the Covid pandemic. He has high hopes for future success and original releases, choosing to not slow down from his destined musical journey.

“If God is with me, who can be against me? It may not happen in a quick period of time, but God will make my enemies my footstool,” he said.

“I’ve continued to be successful and do some of the things I want to do; maybe not in a particular way or in particular events, but I live in a very happy and fulfilled existence.”

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