HAVE YOU HEARD?
Black Earth Podcast: Celebrating nature and inspiring black women leaders
Have You Heard? is where the Pod Bible team meet the people behind the podcasts you may not have heard of yet. Today we’re profiling a new podcast that was started in the Spotify SoundUp programme in 2020, before being produced independently. We spoke to Marion Atieno Osieyo about her new podcast, Black Earth…
Who are you and what’s your podcast about?
I’m Marion Atieno Osieyo. I’m an environmental leader and communicator from London, UK. I created Black Earth Podcast, an interview podcast celebrating nature and inspiring black women leaders in the environmental movement. The podcast facilitates informed, inspiring and authentic conversations on what it means to take care of nature.
What was the first podcast you ever listened to?
The first podcast I ever listened to (and still do) was On Being by Krista Tippett.
Why did you decide to start podcasting in the first place?
I wanted to tell new narratives about black people’s contribution to Earth care in a way that celebrated the diversity and beauty of our culture as well as the beauty of nature. In the opening episode of the podcast, I talk more about the specific turning point for me which led me to starting the podcast.
I pitched my idea to the Spotify SoundUp programme in 2020 and was selected to take part in the programme. The programme gave me the opportunity to refine the podcast further as well as learn about how to tell great stories using the podcast format.
Which podcasts do you take inspiration from?
I’d say On Being has been the biggest inspiration for me in terms of how to structure and host impactful interviews.
I also like Mothers of Invention, which was the first environmental podcast I listened to and felt the issues were covered with enough depth but also accessible.
Aside from podcasts, I listen to alot of interviews, which I feel helps me think about the questions and structure of the conversations in the podcast.
Who’s your dream guest for the podcast?
All my guests have been my dream guests. I’m grateful they have been a part of Black Earth podcast. One person I’m looking forward to interviewing is Mia Mottley, the Prime Minister of Barbados.
Why podcasting? What is it about the format that appeals to you?
Through my work as an environmental leader, I get access to incredible science about the state of our planet. I also meet interesting people with visionary ideas and unique life stories. The podcast format is a perfect way to blend the two – science and unique life stories- in an intimate and accessible way.
Podcasting allows me to integrate nature sounds (bioacoustics) in the interviews, bringing to life the beautiful sounds of nature that are all around us. The episode with Dr. Gladys Kalema-Zikusoka, was recorded when she was in a forest. You can hear the sounds of nature and we were able to amplify that with nature soundscapes in the sound design.
Through podcasting, I can tap into oral storytelling and communal listening practices which are important parts of my ancestral heritage.
Where can the Pod Bible readers find out more about you?
You can check out our website and listen to our episodes: blackearthpodcast.com.
We use our social media to continue informing and engaging with our listener community so connect with us on Instagram, TikTok and LinkedIn @blackearthpodcast
Personally, I’m on Instagram @earth.marion and LinkedIn.
Listen to Black Earth Podcast on Apple Podcasts, Spotify and other popular podcast apps >>