Two Latinx Women Are Tackling Major Issues In Their Community One Podcast At A Time
When Brenda Gonzalez felt there was a lack of Latinx voices and Latinx-lead podcasts, she decided to raise her voice—literally.
What transpired came to be known as Tamarindo Podcast, with a tagline of “Latinx voices at the intersection of politics and pop culture.”
Gonzalez and her new co-host Melinna Bobadilla are bringing commentary on politics and culture that is as tart as the pod-like fruit itself.
“This is a place for folks to enjoy themselves, be funny and upbeat. I want no part of a revolution that isn’t joyful,” Gonzalez said during a phone interview.
That sense of joy transcends as soon as a listener hits ‘play’ on episodes of the podcast, quickly picking up on the soul sister vibe Gonzalez and Bobadilla share.
The duo has picked the brains of guests including poet Yosimar Reyes, Linda Yvette Chávez and Marvin Lemus of Gente-fied.
While both women share a palpable on-air vibe, their co-host duties started surprisingly only nine months ago.
Back when she launched the podcast in 2016, Gonzalez had linked with Luis Octavio but the two amicably went on different paths when Octavio wished to pursue other passion projects.
Gonzalez’s next desire of the podcast being led by two strong Latinx women could now take shape.
Bobadilla came to the mic after Gonzalez initially reached out for an on-air interview. A couple of months later, when Gonzalez was on the lookout as to who could sit beside her in the host chair, she invited Bobadilla to guest co-host an episode and the two eventually synced up for a permanent partnership.
Bobadilla said her newbie status as a “podcast rookie helped [her] to enter it really authentically and laid-back.”
The duo’s backgrounds may be varied but they both mesh well to add commentary on history, cultural and societal norms, politics and more.
After previously being an undocumented student, Gonzalez went on to receive her M.A. in political science and taught at Cal State Fullerton. Bobadilla cut her chops acting and being a voice-over artist after receiving her M.A. in theater and education at New York University.
After their podcast 2.0 started in October, the hosts started to receive more recognition, including a guest spot by Gonzalez on Crooked Media’s ‘Lovett or Leave It’ podcast when it aired live from Los Angeles last month.
Gonzalez said she was “happy to be part of that conversation, to be able to give some diversity for ‘Lovett or Leave It’.”
Fans are starting to be avid followers and take notice. Gonzalez and Bobadilla can often be seen using the #educatedpeleoneras hashtag on their social media, dedicating one of the episodes to educated peleoneras such as Emma Gonzalez.
Listeners have been using the hashtag on everything from t-shirts to graduation caps.
These educated peleoneras have been teaching their audiences and starting dialogues about filmmaking while brown, the state of immigration in 2018 and helping to break society’s norms of beauty—the pair’s ‘Decolonize Your Beauty, Decolonize Your Diet’ podcast has been one of their most popular podcasts to date.
As for upcoming topics, tackling the representation of Latinx in media is on their list.
“Latinx inclusion doesn’t stop at surnames,” Bobadilla said. She added Afro-Latinx and indigenous people should be represented in front and behind the camera as well.
There is still much Gonzalez and Bobadilla want to explore for their podcast, saying they are “focused on the quality and integrity of each episode that comes out.” They name each episode once recording is wrapped up, choosing to see what that episode’s tone and vibe turned out to be.
When asked who their dream guests are, both cited Maria Hinojosa, Gina Rodriguez, Sonia Sotomayor, Beyonce—and a Selena hologram.
If you want to check out past episodes and keep up-to-date with new episodes following their summer hiatus, listen to ‘Tamarindo Podcast’ here. You might hear one of their dream guests on an upcoming episode.
READ: This Podcast Captured The Emotional Moment When A Father Told His Daughter His Immigration Story
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