Welcome to another episode of No Free Refills, a podcast dedicated to the messy, beautiful collision of pop culture and coffee.

In this week’s episode, hosts Tymika Lawrence and Ezra Baker drink wine (we love wine) and continue to socially distance, speaking to each other from their respective homes in New York City. Each episode of No Free Refills kicks off with a drink, and in this week’s show, Lawrence drinks a Pét-Nat from South Africa while Baker sips Glou Glou 2019 Las Jaras.

The focus of Episode Four is Beyoncé’s visual album Black Is King streaming now on Disney+.

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Black Is King debuts one year after the release of the live-action Lion King remake. “What’s special about Black is King,” Lawrence explains, “is that it follows that story of Simba being betrayed and cast out, and then finding self-love and acceptance and coming back into the fold. What is magical about this story is, that, what I just described, actually for Black folks who are descendants of slaves who are not continental Africans, that mimics the story that a lot of us have had in relation to our roots and the disconnectedness and feeling like, I don’t want to say cast out cause that can get loaded when you’re talking about how slavery actually worked, but you were cut off.” 

Lawrence continues: “Just like Simba was loose to roam the wild and figure out what his identity was in, frankly, what felt like an unsafe and unfamiliar place like that, there are a lot of connections there to our story. Black is King is beautiful cause it encompasses all of that, and then with the amazing vocal stylings of my girl, Beyoncé, and… a whole host of excellent artists, both African from the continent artists and then also some guests. Jessie Reyez was in it, Pharell was in it, Jay-Z was in it, but we’re not going to spend too much time talking about that.”

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Full transcript of this episode.

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