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FutureStarrSometimes I Feel Like I Got Criticized Harder Than Charlamagne Because I'm a Woman
Angela Yee, longtime co-host of The Breakfast Club with Charlamagne Tha God and DJ Envy, is taking her career to new heights. This fall she will launch her own midday radio show called "Way Up," which will air on 30 iHeartMedia stations nationwide including Power 105.1 in NYC.
While working as a co-host of The Breakfast Club, there were times when it felt like my male colleagues got more criticism than me. This experience played an integral part in why I left the show to launch my own radio show.
Angela Yee, born and raised in Brooklyn, New York, has been a media professional for over two decades. She began her career as a production assistant before working her way up to her current position. Additionally, she's one-third of Power 105's highly popular and nationally syndicated Radio Hall of Fame show The Breakfast Club since December 2010.
With her partner DJ Envy and host Charlamagne Tha God, they've brought hip hop culture to radio audiences around the globe with millions of listeners in over 90 markets. The show has also spawned viral moments such as Kodak Black's ski mask interview and Soulja Boy's "Drake?" meme.
The Breakfast Club has long been a source of entertainment and education, with its signature interviews and topics. However, it has also had its share of controversy as well.
Former NBA player Kwame Brown accused Charlamagne of sexually assaulting a 15-year-old girl and getting away with it. Despite his opposition to these allegations, Charlamagne quickly issued an apology for his comments.
Soon enough, he was being featured as a political pundit on Rush Limbaugh's show, where he was asked about police brutality in America. Unfortunately, the discussion quickly devolved into an exchange that often featured Limbaugh's dismissive responses.
Radio has always had a reputation for being misogynistic, which makes it especially challenging for Black women to deal with. That's why it was such an exciting development when Angela Yee, one of the co-hosts on The Breakfast Club, announced she is departing the show and starting her own podcast.
She has an unique perspective on being a woman in this industry, having to leave her first job after experiencing sexual assault. While it was an humbling experience, it equipped her with what she has achieved in the media world since.
Yee's fearlessness has allowed her to take on roles many would consider beyond her reach. As a successful radio host, podcaster and most recently an advocate for Black business owners, Yee has created an impressive path.
Angela Yee knows she has been unfairly judged, but she strives to help those around her.
Her interview with Variety serves as a testament to her courage and willingness to challenge the status quo. She shares her story about dealing with an ex-boss, which ultimately cost her employment in the industry.
But her true motivation behind leaving the shadows was her drive to make an impact in her community. She wanted to use her platform for female representation in media outlets.
Angela Yee hopes her podcast, Way Up with Angela Yee, will create a platform for other women in media to be recognized and valued. As an advocate for diversity in radio, she wants to see more representation on air.
Charlamagne Tha God has established himself as one of the most significant figures in Black media. He's been inducted into the Radio Hall of Fame and his show has aired on more than 100 radio stations nationwide, has a podcast with iHeartMedia, and plans are underway for him to launch a book imprint through Simon & Schuster. Charlamagne Tha God truly serves as a gatekeeper to Black culture.
Charlamagne often makes political remarks on his show, and while many of his jokes and zingers are meant to be lighthearted, there can be an undertone of bigotry present. For example, referring to Mo'Nique as a "cuckold" or suggesting Megan Thee Stallion was anti-Black for not appearing on his show are examples.
Particularly with Black women, it has often seemed as if he saved his most heated arguments for them.
Charlamagne has always been a gifted satirist, but his ability to highlight structural racism in Black communities has sometimes been too much for some in the White media world to bear. Nonetheless, this issue continues to haunt his work and it must always remain present.
He's unique in that he speaks out about issues impacting Black people, something other Black satirists don't do. However, this popularity also draws criticism from white people who feel he doesn't speak for them.
Some find it challenging to watch Charlamagne navigate this territory because he often appears as two distinct personalities at once. On one hand, he's a shock jock who make fun of people with sexist, racist or transphobic comments; on the other hand, he's a pundit calling on politicians to reevaluate their commitment to Black lives. It was this shift in tone that Charlamagne says was intentional in order to heal himself.
Being Black in a male-dominated industry has led me to experience much misogyny firsthand. This issue affects women of color in general, especially on radio stations.
For 13 years, I co-hosted The Breakfast Club with Charlamagne tha God and DJ Envy on nationally syndicated radio. It was truly one of the greatest privileges in my career; I got to interview some of my musical heroes and learn their stories; plus it was wonderful working alongside other women of color.
Charlamagne and DJ Envy had the power, sexism, and privilege to take advantage of Yee. They often involved her in their trivial pursuits without her consent and even went so far as to call her a "foof".
As she began her career at Sirius radio, the head of the company informed her that there would be a female host on the morning show. This marked an exciting turning point in her career as it meant she had the space to launch both Lip Service, her own podcast, and The Morning After with Angela Yee - a full-time show which airs weekly.
Yee is best known as co-host of the nationally syndicated FM talkshow The Breakfast Club. But she's also an accomplished businesswoman; she founded three brick-and-mortar businesses that focus on nutrition, education and diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI).
She owns several businesses, such as Juices For Life BK juice bar, Organic Coffee Shop and Hair-Care Company with predominantly Black staff. Furthermore, she's passionate about amplifying Black ownership in media by joining forces with CIROC and NAACP Image Award winner Regina Hall on several initiatives that promote Black business ownership.
When it comes to sexual behavior, many women focus on their physical appearance instead of what they are truly capable of. This can have a detrimental effect on their self-esteem.
Angela Yee is not one to let her ego get the better of her, however. She is an impressive woman who has worked hard in both her professional and personal life in order to achieve success.
Her career has included radio (as co-host of the nationally syndicated talk show The Breakfast Club), publishing, filmmaking and philanthropy. Furthermore, she is an intrepid businesswoman with three brick-and-mortar businesses focused on nutrition education diversity equity and inclusion (DEI) - including Coffee Uplifts People coffee shop; juice bar Drink Fresh Juice; and hair care company Private Label.
She is a strong and confident advocate for nonviolent resistance in the tradition of Mohandas Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr. She has received multiple prestigious awards and sits on boards of numerous organizations, such as The American Foundation for the University of the West Indies (AFUWI) and Nile Rodgers' We Are Family Foundation.
A woman of substance is someone with a burning desire to improve herself and her lifestyle, including following her heart, working hard, and never giving up when things don't go as planned. A woman of substance inspires others through inspiration, support, influence, and power - not just with words but in action as well.