The Tavis Smiley Show was an American public broadcasting radio talk show.

The Tavis Smiley Show
Presented byTavis Smiley
Country of originUnited States
ProducerTavis Smiley
Original release
ReleaseJanuary 5, 2004 (2004-01-05) –
December 13, 2017 (2017-12-13)

Public Radio International


The Tavis Smiley Show was broadcast on Public Radio International (PRI). It was a one-hour weekly program featuring interviews with news makers, thought leaders and artists and seeks to bring diverse perspectives to the airwaves. It was produced by Smiley Radio Properties, Inc., in partnership with PRI[1] at Smiley's studio in Los Angeles, California.[2] The program ran two hours per week until October 2010 when the second hour became the sister program Smiley & West, co-hosted by longtime Smiley collaborator Dr. Cornel West. The show ended after thirteen years of broadcast in December 2017.[3]

History of radio show


The first version of The Tavis Smiley Show was on National Public Radio (NPR). It was broadcast daily from January 2002 to December 16, 2004, in Los Angeles,[4] when the host Tavis Smiley decided not to renew his contract with NPR.[5] Some of the reasons cited based on an article by Howard Kurtz for not renewing the contract were 1) Tavis Smiley wanted to tape his show a day in advance, and NPR did not agree; 2) against federal funding policies, Tavis Smiley wished to own the right to rebroadcast the show; and 3) Tavis Smiley appealed to have the budget for promoting the program significantly increased, and NPR did not have the budget to do so.[6]

The show was a news and opinion program focusing upon issues of race, diversity, and ethnicity and often featured guest speakers. It was an hour-long show.

The show was helped through a collaboration with various public radio stations. It was replaced on some radio stations by News & Notes which follows much the same format and topics. Many other radio stations replaced it with the short-lived NPR News with Tony Cox.


  1. ^ About the PRI show at its official website Archived August 21, 2006, at the Wayback Machine
  2. ^ Profile of Tavis Smiley Archived July 14, 2006, at the Wayback Machine
  3. ^ Simpson, April; Editor, Associate (15 December 2017). "PRI terminates relationship with Tavis Smiley". Current. Retrieved 2018-03-26. {{cite web}}: |last2= has generic name (help)
  4. ^ "Official website of NPR show". 2004-12-16. Retrieved 2012-06-25.
  5. ^ Statement of NPR and the African American Consortium regarding cancellation of show, November 29, 2004.
  6. ^ Howard Kurtz (2005-01-17). "Broadcast All Over – Tavis Smiley's NPR Show Is History, but the Talk Lives On". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2012-06-25.