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Inmates at San Quentin State Prison. An inmate-produced podcast called "Ear Hustle" premieres this week and will delve into life inside the prison. (Photo: Waldemar Zboralski via Wikimedia Commons)

This week, the podcast network Radiotopia will launch the first episode of “Ear Hustle,” a podcast produced at San Quentin State Prison. Each of the first season’s 10 episodes, running every other week, will delve into a different corner of life inside: cellmates, pets, family relationships, fashion. The much-anticipated series already has been hovering at the top of the iTunes podcast charts. 

“Ear Hustle” — the phrase is slang for eavesdropping — is a collaboration between Earlonne Woods and Antwan Williams, both prisoners at San Quentin, and Nigel Poor, a Bay Area visual artist who teaches photography classes at the prison. Williams, 29, has served more than 10 years on a 15-year sentence for armed robbery. Woods, 45, has served more than 19 years of a 31-years–to-life sentence for attempted second-degree robbery. Their chemistry is one of the best parts of the show: the three share a deep rapport that is at times funny, frank, and raw.

San Quentin is a unique prison with a long tradition of inmate-produced journalism: The San Quentin News has been published on and off for almost 100 years, and Williams, Woods, and Poor got their start audio producing the “San Quentin Prison Report” for local radio station KALW.

Read more.

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