In an era when every day seems to bring some sort of new bad news about LGBTQ+ rights in the country, there might be a place where queer people can find a bit more hope thanks to a new podcast premiering today hosted by out actor and Mean Girls alum Jonathan Bennett and cohosted by his husband, TV host Jaymes Vaughan.
The podcast, appropriately named Pridecast, is a new iHeart Radio project in collaboration with Los Angeles Pride. The series is here to expand Pride from just being a singular event or month to something year-round that people can find comfort and support in.
The show pulls inspiration from the LGBTQ+ community, sharing impactful stories to educate and inspire; it’s not a show where celebrities come only to talk about their latest projects, according to Bennett and Vaughan.
“We just really wanted to find a place for the LGBTQI+ community to come and just be celebrated and empowered,” Bennett tells Out Traveler's sister publication, The Advocate.
Vaughan says that in the world today, while we need to keep informed about the anti-LGBTQ+ legislation being passed and other similar news, there also needs to be support and encouragement. “That’s what Pridecast is: It’s that place to come get your energy recharged,” he says.
It’s also to “remind you how fun and awesome it is to be gay,” Bennett adds.
The newlyweds — who tied the knot in March — say listeners can expect a variety of voices on the show from across the LGBTQ+ community.
“It literally exists to build people up and let people hear stories that go ‘Oh, wow, you know, I identify with that’ or ‘Oh, wow, that encourages me in this space in my life’ or ‘Oh, wow, that makes me proud of who I am,” Vaughan tells The Advocate.
As for celebrity guests, they’d like to see on the show? Bennett says he’d welcome U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg and pop superstar Ariana Grande for her strong allyship. For Vaughan, he says he’d like to see RuPaul join them on Pridecast for his cultural impact on the world and bring drag into a popular place in society.
“You're always gonna leave with a great takeaway, whether it be a nugget of information about queer history or whether it be an uplifting story,” Bennett says.