“You’re not pretty for a Black girl. You are beautiful, period.”
With this simple reminder from a mother to her young daughter, Procter & Gamble’s award-winning campaign, “The Talk,” began a conversation about race in mainstream media. Now, Spotify and P&G are continuing the dialogue with Harmonize, a new podcast series focused on the impact of racial bias in the U.S. and how music has served as a catalyst for change. The four episodes, featuring Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, and Tony Award-winner (EGOT) John Legend and rapper, songwriter, and record executive Pusha T, are available today exclusively on Spotify.
Hosted by communications consultant and award-winning writer Jamilah Lemieux—a leading millennial voice on issues of race, gender, and sexuality—and featuring music expert Cory Townes, Harmonize expands the conversation that P&G pushed into the mainstream with “The Talk,” and continues with their more recent campaign, “The Look.” (Visit TalkaboutBias.com to get the 411 on “The Look”).
“It is so important to have an open, honest dialogue around difficult topics like race, gender and bias,” said John Legend. “I have huge respect for companies like Spotify and P&G that are creating spaces for artists like myself to have these conversations, which are long overdue.”
“Our latest film, ‘The Look’ is designed to spark reflection and dialogue on the frank realities of racial bias, and the sometimes subtle ways it manifests itself in everyday situations for people of color,“ said Damon Jones, Vice President, Global Communications & Advocacy at Procter & Gamble. “Together with Spotify, we’re deepening this conversation, illustrating how race intersects music and culture and bringing together a variety of perspectives and experiences we believe will inspire people to take action to address these all too common instances of individual and institutional bias.”
Harmonize will focus specifically on how Black music is celebrated around the world despite the bias-related challenges so many Black people face. The podcast will dive deep into conversations with musicians, cultural commentators, and artists who share their stories about how bias has impacted their personal and professional lives, with a particular focus on the Black male experience in America. Harmonize has plans to expand beyond season one and shine light on bias related to gender, LGBTQ, identity, and more.
“We are proud to amplify the conversation that P&G has so thoughtfully sparked with the launch of Harmonize,” says Danielle Lee, Global Vice President, Partner Solutions at Spotify. “Consumers expect brands to take a stand on issues they care about and contribute to society in a meaningful way. Our hope is that Harmonize will expand the conversation around bias in America in an effort to build empathy.”
Last summer, Spotify launched our first branded original podcast series, Ebb & Flow, in partnership with New Amsterdam Vodka. Recently, we’ve added even more voices to our growing podcast slate with Dope Labs, Jemele Hill Is Unbothered, and the newly announced partnership with President Barack Obama & Michelle Obama’s Higher Ground Audio. Through partnerships like these, as well as programs like Sound Up, we’re amplifying underrepresented voices in podcast and beyond.
Listen to the first four episodes of Harmonize featuring EGOT John Legend and Pusha T below.