Stitcher has a plethora of podcasts worth listening to. Each week, we’re giving you new episode recommendations from some of our top shows to help keep you up to speed and ease the pain of the pod discovery process.
Celebrity Book Club with Chelsea Devantez — “Cicely Tyson’s Just as I Am (with Hayley Marie Norman)”
It’s no easy task to write a memoir at 96 years old. But in January, actress Cicely Tyson, did just that.
On this week’s episode of Celebrity Book Club, host Chelsea Devantez and guest Hayley Marie Norman explore Cicely Tyson’s new memoir. The podcast, which aims to celebrate the celebrity memoirs of women in the limelight who have been unfairly scrutinized by tabloids and social media, yet again pays an excellent tribute to the multifaceted life of a well-known celebrity.
Tyson’s memoir, titled Just As I Am, was only released two months ago and only days two after it was published, Tyson passed away at 96 years old.
The two talk about how Norman, when she appeared on the NBC game show Deal or No Deal, wore her hair naturally. Norman says, “I got so many fan letters of people being like, ‘oh my gosh I haven’t seen anyone wear their natural hair on television.’” She then says that the memoir meant a lot to her because Tyson was the first black woman ever to wear her natural hair on television.
After praising the book’s ghostwriter, Michelle Burford, for her ability to accurately capture Tyson’s voice and tone, Devantez says the memoir could easily serve as a history lesson. “It’s way better than a textbook,” she says. Tyson recalls her living through monumental moments in the nation’s shifting times ranging from MLK’s death to the George Floyd protests. “She didn’t mince her words when it came to talking about white people and talking about racism. She was very candid in those stories,” Norman says.
One of the best moments of the episode was Devantez and Norman’s recounting of how Tyson’s mom handled separating from Tyson’s father. “It was badass,” Norman says. Tyson’s mother left her dad when he threw a violent fit in the home. Her mother took Cecily, her brother, and her sister to a cart where her father worked, dropped them off, and she moves out of the house. She used her money, got a new apartment and moved her and her kids in all in the same day.
Listen to the episode to hear what part of the book Norman says broke her heart, how Tyson made her way into Hollywood, and why Tyson should not be forgotten for being a method actress (“a lot of men use method acting to be pieces of shit”).
The Salon with Lala Milan — “BEVELATIONS w/ Bevy Smith”
This week on The Salon with Lala Milan the licensed cosmetologist who “loves all things beauty” welcomes TV personality, businesswoman, and author Bevy Smith onto the show.
Smith has written a new memoir called Bevelations: Lessons from a Mutha, Auntie, Bestie. Smith immediately reveals the meaning behind the title: “Most people that call me mother are my gay sons,” she says. “Auntie is for all the young women that have seen me on TV over the years.” They can talk to her about anything including career challenges. “Bestie is formy peer group. That’s everyone in that 40 and over group. We can connect on being grown-ass women.”
Smith praises the hsot saying: “My book is all about teaching people to dare to dream and you’re someone who does that.” She says Milan challenges and pushes herself all the time “to the point where it hurts.” Milan responds by telling Smith not to make her cry because she “already cried today.”
The episode delves into not letting people dictate to us who we are as well as Smith admitting what her favorite hairstyle is in the salon. She says it involves swooping the bang. “That swoop with the bang is my go to.” She admits she’s anxious to start sporting her natural hair styles because the next chapter in her life involves being “Malibu Bevy.” Malibu Bevyo has “natural hair, a lover with a very large penis” and he “washes her hair every sunday and then greases her scalp and braids it on the deck of her oceanfront home.”
She goes on to say her next chapter involves them cooking vegetables together and then “making love to the raw of the ocean.”
Listen to the episode to hear Smith discuss the mistakes people make when manifesting their dreams, the meaning behind the term Bevelations, and making your personality standout without fighting to be heard.
Scam Goddess! — “LonelyLiar15 with Diona Reasonover”
On this week’s episode of Scam Goddess! Laci Mosley welcomes Diona Reasonover from the Stitcher podcast, If/Then, on the show. Reasonover quickly reveals she thinks she seems like a mark for scammers because of her kind face. “I do have this face and this personality and this being…I am a mark please don’t scam me.” But she says she doesn’t trust anything so she rarely gets scammed.
A recent scam that currently bothers Reasonver is one that involves people who are stealing appointments for the Covid vaccine from elders of color. “If you know you’re healthy and you know it’s wrong, stay home,” she says.
The historic hoodwink this week involves a June 2006 scam in which a team of producers and writers created a fake diary vlog on YouTube centered around a fake teenage girl named lonelygirl15. In addition to delving into how the scam came about, how big it became, and how it became one of the first YouTube channels to include paid promotion and put into its dark storyline, the episode is filled with, as expected, hilarious tangents about subjects like MySpace, getting a boyfriend off of Craigslist, and dissecting one of the vlog’s creator’s Mesh Flinders. “I have never talked to nobody named Mesh,” Mosley says.
Listen to the episode to hear Mosley and Reasonover talk about kids being assholes, dressing like an elderly person in order to get the Covid vaccine, and why Reasonover admits she was bad at, but loved being a carny.
— Ian Goldstein