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Ear Hustle
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Ear Hustle

Ear Hustle & Radiotopia

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Ear Hustle brings you the daily realities of life inside prison shared by those living it, and stories from the outside, post-incarceration. The podcast is a partnership between Nigel Poor, a Bay Area visual artist, and Earlonne Woods, formerly incarcerated at San Quentin State Prison, and was co-founded with former San Quentin resident Antwan Williams. The Ear Hustle team works in the San Francisco Bay Area, both in San Quentin State Prison’s media lab and from offices on the outside, to pr ...
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Prisons weren’t designed for older folks, and the California Institution for Women is no exception. Nigel and Earlonne pay a visit to CIW’s Senior Center to hang out with a group of women aged 70 and up and hear their stories about aging inside. Big thanks to Acting Warden Oak Smith and Lt. Guim'Mara Berry at San Quentin State Prison, and Acting Wa…
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Inspired by the classic This American Life episode “24 Hours at the Golden Apple,” the Ear Hustle team documents one day in the life of San Quentin’s lower yard, from Haka dancing to dominoes; gospel to geese; and weight-lifting to waiting to get out. Big thanks to Acting Warden Oak Smith and Lt. Guim'Mara Berry at San Quentin State Prison, and Act…
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It’s summertime! Which means the Ear Hustle team is off cooking up a new batch of stories for our next season — Season 12 — launching September 6. In the meantime, we’re bringing you an episode from one of our favorite new podcasts, Violation. The series revisits a 1986 murder case, in which 16-year-old Jacob Wideman — son of award-winning author J…
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In honor of Pride month, we’re serving up some of our best stories about the LGBTQ community inside prison, including: a love story set out on the yard at San Quentin State Prison; two trans women on their journey from a men’s prison to a women’s prison, thanks to a new California law; and the first-ever Pride parade held inside a Norwegian prison.…
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Is there such a thing as a prison uniform? Turns out, it takes two podcasts to answer that question. Nigel and Earlonne team up with Avery Trufelman from the Radiotopia pod Articles of Interest to find out why incarcerated people wear what they do, and how they make it their own. Big thanks to Guim'Mara Berry and Acting Warden Oak Smith for their s…
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Over at San Quentin, a new preacher has started drawing crowds on the yard. He’s charismatic, soft-spoken, and devout. He says he’s a different man than he was when he committed the crimes that put him in prison. But how can he, or anyone else, really know? Big thanks to Guim'Mara Berry and Acting Warden Oak Smith for their support of the show. Ear…
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Imagine you’re an archaeologist tasked with going through someone’s garbage. What will you learn about their habits and desires, their values, and how they spend their resources? For seven days, the entire Ear Hustle team, both inside and outside San Quentin, stashed our trash, revealing some new and surprising things about each other. Big thanks t…
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Can incarcerated women dye their hair? Do they have enough tampons and pads? What makes them happy, and how realistic is “Orange Is the New Black”? Ear Hustle listeners have questions about life inside a women’s prison, so we head to the California Institution for Women for answers. To learn more about donating books to the library at the Californi…
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For years, we’ve asked incarcerated people to speculate on the difference between life inside a men’s prison and inside a women’s. Now we’re finally getting answers, thanks to a 2021 law allowing transgender, intersex, and non-binary people to transfer to prisons that match their gender identity. For some, the law has been life-changing; for others…
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What’s the difference between an over-under and a lower-lower? How many pairs of underwear do you get in prison? And how long does a bar of soap last? We spend an entire episode with one San Quentin OG who schools us on the history of prison and what 46 years inside will do to a man. Big thanks to Guim'Mara Berry and Warden Oak Smith for their supp…
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San Quentin’s population is changing, and a lot of the old ways are dying out. But some prison OGs don’t want to let go of the past. Big thanks to Lieutenant Guim'Mara Berry and Acting Warden Oak Smith for their support of the show. Ear Hustle is a proud member of Radiotopia, from PRX. Find a full list of episode credits at earhustlesq.com.…
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When you’re incarcerated, are your dreams set outside prison walls? Or out on the prison yard? Are they a comforting space to escape to? Or a painful reminder of what you no longer have? From lucid dreams to wet dreams to dreams of freedom, we ask how incarceration changes what you see when you sleep. Big thanks to Guim'Mara Berry and Warden Ron Br…
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After 22 years in prison, our inside colleague Rahsaan “New York” Thomas is now a free man. We meet him at the gates of San Quentin, and tag along for his first meal outside and a trip to Target. Big thanks to Lieutenant Guim'Mara Berry and Acting Warden Oak Smith for their support of the show. Ear Hustle is a proud member of Radiotopia, from PRX. …
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Lieutenant Sam Robinson has been with Ear Hustle since day one. As he retires from his post as Public Information Officer at San Quentin, we pay tribute to the man behind the mic. Big thanks to Lt. Guim'Mara Berry and Warden Ron Broomfield for their support of the show. Ear Hustle is a proud member of Radiotopia, from PRX. Find a full list of episo…
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While she was in jail awaiting her sentence, Karen was housed with a pregnant cellie on the verge of giving birth. At the time, the experience barely registered. It took us a while to understand why. This episode contains references to suicide. Listener discretion is advised. You can reach out to the Suicide and Crisis Lifeline at 988. As always, b…
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If you have to serve prison time, Norway is the place to do it … at least that’s what we’d heard. Incarcerated people in Norway wear their own clothes, cook delicious meals from scratch, and even take short leaves to re-acclimate to society. Are Norway’s prisons all they’re cracked up to be? Ear Hustle takes you inside to find out. Radiotopia’s fal…
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The Ear Hustle music episode returns! We catch up with some guys at San Quentin who are longing for love, and then, for the first time ever, we toss the mic to the ladies at the California Institution for Women. You can find out more about Musicambia here. Radiotopia’s fall fundraiser is here! Donate today to support Ear Hustle and help us reach ou…
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