Danyel Smith on the Black Women Artists Who ‘Shine Bright’ in Pop Music History

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 (Drew Allyn)

In her new book “Shine Bright: A Very Personal History of Black Women in Pop,” music journalist Danyel Smith highlights the genius and cultural impact of artists like Whitney Houston, Gladys Knight, Donna Summer, Aretha Franklin, Janet Jackson and more. Pulling not just from research but from her own experiences interviewing a number of the pop icons featured, the book presents a unique mix of memoir, criticism and music history that demands Black women artists get their due recognition. Smith joins us to talk about pop stars of “Shine Bright” and the influence they had on her own life as a Black girl growing up in Oakland and Los Angeles.


Danyel Smith, author, "Shine Bright: A Very Personal History of Black Women in Pop," journalist; creator and host, Spotify's "Black Girl Songbook" podcast.

Appearing at LA Festival of Books at USC on Sunday April 24 at 12pm and at Kepler's in Menlo Park on Thursday April 28 at 6pm, along with the Bay Area Book Festival on May 8.