For the past five months, four QTPOC in New York have been creating some serious culture, and rapport with our community through their podcast, “HIM.”
HIM Podcast is a weekly podcast hosted by four queer men of color (Malik, Stevie, Erin, & Trey) discussing their personal lives, careers, and dating/love all set against the backdrop of the “Concrete Jungle” that is NYC. Each week HIM tackles topics that are essential to the LGBTQIA community which commonly effect the African American community as a whole.
I had the opportunity to interview these amazing people, and from the moment that I got all of them together, I could tell there was something special here, which is kinda surprising considering that the group hasn’t been a unit long.
Trey Parker, a Philadelphia native stated, “We’ve only known each other for 5 months.” The whole team met the day before the first episode, after pre planning via social media for about 6 months.”
“Created in February 2017 the purpose of HIM Podcast is to provide POC within the LGBTQIA community and its allies a place to feel safe, a place that they too can call their own. This podcast is also for people who may not be apart of the LGBTQIA community yet still want to learn more about their LGBTQIA brothers and sisters. The hosts of HIM all share a similar journey, being Black and gay, but even in that shared journey, each respective narrative is divergent. It is through these differences that HIM can only hope to use our voices to highlight the infinite spectrum which is the LGBTQIA community. HIM Podcast wants to incite change, and we strongly believe that the only way we can incite change is through effective conversation.”
HIM, hopes to not only have an impact on the Brown Queer Community, but believe this is a conversation that transcends all of the boxes we put ourselves in.
Erin Washington, a Michigan native, says, “The Reason why we say the world, our conversation does center around being gay Black men in NYC, because that’s who we are, but there’s learning to be had. Our perspectives go behind our ideas, their are themes that go across gender and sexual identity. There are people that aren’t necessarily the same as us, but they can identify with what we are talking about. The goal is not only to entertain, but to educate.”
Malik Little, who is from Virginia, added, “Even though we present a topic, we are in the process of our learning as well, weren’t experts on the topic. I never wanted to be perceived holier than thou, making mistakes like everyone else.”
Through effective social media savvy, and some really killer marketing including minimalist designs typically paired with a hard modern font, the branding is reflective of who, and what HIM represents.
“When creating the over all look for HIM, it started off with me trying to emulate marketing done by HBO, and other networks, in vain of Sex In City, and just like the characters from SITC, which guy has different personality.”
The colors signify each being different. After several tries, we wanted something simple, but at the same time, Malik wanted color. They chose pink to rebel – “This is a safe space, and we’re going to do what we want.”
Stevie, A New York Native, has some big dreams for where HIM could advance in the future. “I wanna see HIM do a red carpet maybe, not too much, “real cute like – Back to you Malik.”HIM has all of the ingredients to do that and more, and the team is in agreement that expansion would be the goal; specifically Visual Media, and I can tell you as a HIM fan, that would be some amazing content to consume.
If you are not yet hip to what I am calling, a “Force on the Rise,” go check out “HIM Podcast” episode 13 on February 14th 2018 via Spotify, Apple Podcast, Soundcloud, Sticher, Tunein, and Google Play.