The Tavis Smiley Show To Introduce Friday Podcasts

The Tavis Smiley Show from PRI will mark its first year on the airwaves this week by introducing Friday podcasts on April 28, 2006. The weekly podcasts will make the political, health, finance, music and entertainment segments of the show available to listeners who visit and sites such as Apple iTunes.

Since returning to public radio in April 2005 following a successful three-year run of his daily program on NPR, Smiley’s new weekend radio show has grown to an extended family of 65 stations, including the top ten metros. “I had grown to love the stations and listeners of public radio – and believe me, I heard from a lot of people who were upset when I left NPR,” said Smiley. “I knew we had to continue the journey, so with PRI’s committed support we started our own company, Smiley Radio Properties, and created a two-hour weekly show that is a high-energy exchange of views and insights with the most interesting people alive today.”

Smiley’s roster of guests over the past year has included politicians, thinkers, entertainers, and everyday people. He has welcomed–and challenged – former Presidents Bill Clinton and Jimmy Carter; U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Attorney General Alberto Gonzales; actor/directors Spike Lee, Alan Alda, Samuel L.Jackson, Forest Whittaker and Ruby Dee; artists Earth, Wind & Fire, Dionne Warwick, Smokey Robinson, B.B. King, Queen Latifah and many more.

“The stations and listeners we are able to connect with are the best out there, and we are grateful to each person who has been part of our first year. With our new Friday podcasts we are responding to listeners who’ve asked for more ways to be enlightened, encouraged and empowered by the fascinating guests and topics we deliver each week,” added Smiley.

In the last year Smiley and his team of producers also developed special broadcasts for public radio. Retracing the Road to Freedom: The 50th Anniversary of the Montgomery Bus Boycott, a riveting commemoration of the civil actions that helped change the course of the nation, aired in December. In February, the show presented the Barbara Jordan 70th Birthday Tribute, an hour-long celebration of the late Congresswoman’s life and enduring legacy.

Smiley regularly produces live broadcasts on-location for special industry events and recently broadcast Tavis Smiley hosts Jazz at the Smithsonian with artists Al Jarreau, McCoy Tyner, Geri Allen and scholars David Baker and John Hasse with support from PRI, member station WETA and the Smithsonian.

Maxie Jackson, Program Director of WETA in greater Washington DC says, “WETA considers The Tavis Smiley Show one of the pillars of our weekend lineup. Its diverse perspectives and engaging conversations are trademarks of Tavis Smiley.”

Ron Jones, Vice President of Programming for Chicago Public Radio adds, “The Tavis Smiley Show continues to perform an important function for Chicago Public Radio in our effort to provide an array of critical perspectives. Tavis is an important voice that resonates with our listeners, and his program is a valuable and successful addition to our weekend lineup.”

To learn more about the show and hear current or past programs, visit


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