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NW African American Museum’s African American Cultural Experience Choir

The Northwest African American Museum (NAAM) is possibly the only museum in the country to house a choir.  NAAM was closed for renovation until January, 2023. During the pandemic, the African American Cultural Experience choir became the mobile arm of the museum. The choral group shares Black/US history  with the community through music that expresses the Black experience. 

Listen in on this excerpt of a KBCS interview with NAAM President and CEO, LaNesha DeBardelaben about the significance of this choir.  

Producer: Yuko Kodama Special thanks to Jalisa Bass for contributing to editing

Photo: NAAM

Music Clips: NAAM ACE Choir and KNKX

NW African American Museum's African American Cultural Ensemble singing

The Power of the BTS/ARMY Relationship

BTS, the South Korean music group has taken the global music scene by storm, breaking records in numbers of albums sold and spun, twitter follows, number of fans, sold out concerts and much more. 

Their influence has been noted by many, including governmental officials who have tried to suppress BTS’s reach and image in public. This story looks at who they are, their work and social reach in partnership with their fanbase, ARMY.

Reuters graph of BTS/ARMY fundraising for Black Lives Matter

Producer: Yuko Kodama – special thanks to Sam Sullivan, Christine Marasigan, Nancy Yang, Candace Epps-Robertson, Laura Mundt, Angela Young and Sherry Lynn Reynolds Anderson

Photo: Ashley[epidemic]

Black Families Navigating the School System

Emijah Smith assists Black families in the region navigating the school systems.  Smith shares her own experiences in advocating for her loved ones and what led her on this path. (more…)

Black Coffee Northwest

Empowerment and racial pride are paramount for the Black community. Despite centuries of oppression, many African Americans strive to start and maintain their own businesses to create personal and generational wealth. Black businesses such as barbershops and eateries, along with churches, have historically been safe social harbors for community members.


Seattle Street Responses to the Derek Chauvin Trial Verdict

On April 21st, 2021, Former Minneapolis law enforcement officer, Derek Chauvin. was charged guilty on all counts for the murder of George Floyd, a black father.  KBCS reporter, Gol Holghooghi took to the streets of Seattle’s Central District and Capitol Hill neighborhood to ask people about their impressions after this historic event.
Producers: Gol Holghooghi and Yuko Kodama
Photo: courtesy of Kristin Wall

How to be a Good White Ally

Social media is abuzz about race, as the #BlackLivesMatter movement sweeps the country. White allies are stepping forward, to help. Find out what it takes to be a good white ally.  Black Musician, Athlete and Activist, Aron Lee speaks with KBCS reporter, Kevin Henry.

Producers: Kevin Henry and Yuko Kodama

Photo: Aron Lee

Black Collective Voice: Page Engage Events

Black Collective Voice (BCV)  is a group that started during the CHOP (Capitol Hill Occupied Protest), and continues with social actions today. (more…)

Eastside Black Lives Matter Flashstances

Black Lives Matter flashstances are events where groups of people gather at street corners to take a stand for black lives by displaying Black Lives Matter signs and banners, and speaking with passersby. One eastside group has been organizing these flashstances nearly every week for six years. Listen in on how the organizers see their role in working toward social change.


‘More Than One Kind of Nature’

Writer, Rasheena Fountain discusses what shapes our view and relationship with the environment with KBCS’s Yuko Kodama.

Producer: Yuko Kodama

Photo: Yuko Kodama

The Black Panther Party – Seattle Chapter

This year marks the 50th anniversary of the Seattle chapter of the Black Panther Party. The Seattle chapter of the Black Panther Party was the first to be established outside of California.  This series highlights some lesser known stories of Seattle’s local Black Panther Party.

KBCS’s Yuko Kodama speaks with Steve Roberson and Aaron Dixon, former members of Seattle’s Black Panther Party. Steve Roberson served as a vista volunteer for the Party in the free community health clinic and breakfast program in the early 70’s, and Aaron Dixon was the former leader of Seattle’s Black Panther Party.

Part 1 – Dixon explains how the Seattle chapter of the Black Panther Party was founded.Roberson shares about memories about the Black Panther Party health clinic in the late 1960’s.

Part 2 – Black Panther Party members were required to educate themselves about black history.  The mission was to serve the community.  Dixon describes a day in the life of a Black Panther Party member.

Part 3 – Dixon describes how the Black Panther Party free breakfast program worked and who donated to the organization.

Part 4 – One of the Black Panther Party’s programs was to protect the community from racial aggression.  Dixon recounts an incident the orgnanization was involved in at Rainier Beach High School.

Part 5 – Roberson shares about an encounter at the Black Panther Party free community medical clinic that changed his perspective on community.

Part 6 – Dixon illustrates how the organization was supported by the local community during a confrontation with the Seattle Police, and explains the history behind a sculpture at Madrona Elementary school and Library

Part 7 – Dixon shares what happened as Black Panther Party chapters in Los Angeles and Chicago were attacked by federal government entities, resulting in 4 political assassinations of Black Panther Party leaders

Part 8 – Dixon reflects on how the Seattle chapter of the Black Panther Party weathered the more intense period after J Edgar Hoover proclaimed the Black Panther Party breakfast program a threat to national security.

Part 9 – Dixon describes how former Seattle Mayor Wes Uhlman stepped in to keep the local chapter safe.

Part 10 – Dixon gives his take on how civil rights and black liberation movements of the 60s and 70’s compare to the social movements of today.

Part 11 – Dixon shares the Seattle Black Panther Party’s relationship with Jimi Hendrix.