During the pandemic, starting a podcast has almost become a cliche. After all, what else are creatives going to do, when they’re stuck at home unable to perform, publish or even tell entertaining stories to friends over a drink?
But while some people look down on podcasting, I think it’s a blessing. Along with my early-morning jog, having a range of shows to listen to has saved my sanity during the long months of Melbourne lockdown. And I’ve discovered a huge range of podcasts produced by sex workers, both local and international.
Podcasting is an excellent medium for talking about sex work. It can give us an intimate entry into the life of the presenter, with all those tiny details, such as mannerisms and sense of humour, that may not carry over into text. Sometimes I feel as though they’re actually in the room with me…as if our community is still around me physically, and not just in spirit.
Here are some sex-worker-produced podcasts that I thoroughly recommend. Whether you enjoy some humour, want to learn more about ‘whore history’ or take an interest in activism, there’s something here for everyone.
Somebody You Love
Let’s start with the classically-Aussie ‘Somebody You Love’. Recently established by Holly Harte and Jenna Love, the premise is simple: somebody you love is a sex worker. Whether you’re a client, a friend, a partner or a sex worker yourself, everyone knows someone in the industry…whether they realise it, or not.
Jenna and Holly claim to be experts in ‘disappointing our parents, breaching community guidelines, and banging the people who vote against our rights.’ They vibe together wonderfully, tackling topics from bodily fluids to human rights with an offbeat sense of humour. Despite only starting in June this year, they already have sixteen episodes published.
They might be ‘disappointing their parents’ but they haven’t disappointed me. If you’d like to support their efforts, check out their patreon.
The Peepshow Podcast
Here’s another industry mainstay! Fellow Tryst writer and sex worker Jessie Sage produces The Peepshow Podcast in partnership with adult performer PJ Sage. It’s a thorough exploration of the sex industry and sexuality as a whole, featuring some well-known guests: David Ley, Melissa Gira Grant, and Tina Horn, to name just a few.
At nearly a hundred episodes, there’s a lot to learn…and the quality of the content ensures you come away from these conversations feeling informed and empowered. If you’re looking for a thorough introduction the the issues around sex work, The Peepshow Podcast is an excellent place to start.
The Vixen Hour
Let’s jump in a time machine and head way back to 2014, a time when the sex work landscape in Australia looked a little different, but activists were no less vocal in support of our rights.
The Vixen Hour was originally a weekly radio show on queer Melbourne station JOY.FM, hosted by Christian Vega and other members of Vixen Collective, Victoria’s peer-only sex worker organisation. Although it’s no longer running, you can access all 20 episodes through the usual podcast channels, and enjoy a ton of sex-worker-activism goodness.
The podcast explores the world from a queer sex worker perspective. Topics are wide-ranging and include sex work and religion, boy image, and human rights. Getting your facts straight isn’t just interesting, it’s also essential…as they say on the show, ‘Everyone has an opinion about sex work - this is your opportunity to make yours an informed one’.
He’s been running the podcast since 2019, inviting USA-based professionals to join him and chat about the industry. Far from making himself the center of the show, he prioritises sex worker voices and gives his guests room to share their stories. It’s more of a chat show than a dissertation, providing a nice change of pace - relaxed, intimate and friendly.
Tank puts out a new episode every Tuesday, so there are more than 100 recordings for you to explore.
Yes, a Stripper Podcast
Of course, the industry isn’t just about full service! Stripping is sex work too, and the lovely folks over at Yes, a Stripper Podcast are keen to usher you into their world. Hosted by AM Davies, the show tells personal stories with wit and humour. It’s been around since January 2020.
The show’s tagline is, ‘strippers are real people that are capable of amazing things, in and outside of the strip club.’ With an introduction like that, I was hoping for a multi-faceted experience, and I wasn’t disappointed. AM Davies hosts a variety of diverse guests for smart, evolved conversations about the sex industry and the people who keep it running.
With a respectable 79 episodes, you won’t run out of material on your morning walks, and you’ll learn a lot from this amazing performer and her guests.
Isabella Martin is a consummate podcast host - her breathy, gentle voice is just perfect for guiding listeners into the world of sex work. Her podcast BBWBadgirl, established in 2019, explores escorting, kink, and online work.
Isabella is a hands-on worker and content creator who describes herself as a ‘professional bad girl’. Her podcast helps her listeners with getting the sex they want, while also interacting better with service providers.
A huge drawcard is her insight into men’s interest in ‘big, beautiful women’ (BBW) - she unpacks fatphobia in the industry and shares her personal experiences. There’s also a lot of great content around sex skills, etiquette, politics, and pop culture.
The Oldest Profession
Are you tired of seeing sex workers erased from the history books? Do you enjoy a side of sex work with your documentary content? The Oldest Profession goes even further - each episode focuses on a specific historical figure who was also a sex worker, reminding us that our work has always been part of the story.
The show is hosted by Kaytlin Bailey, a USA-based stand up comic, ‘notorious old pro’, and sex worker rights advocate. She joins forces with historian Charlene Fletcher PhD and producer Marie Cecile Anderson to teach us more about sex workers and their place in history.
From modern legends like Margo St James and Annie Sprinkle to mythic figures such as Lillith (the original ‘fallen woman’ in religious mythology), ‘The Oldest Profession’ has you covered. You’ll wind up with a much more complete picture of history - and sex worker rights - than you’ll get from the history books.
It’s so Hard
Let’s finish off (no pun intended) with another Aussie offering, ‘It’s So Hard’. Hosted by sex workers Jenn and Tess Louise, it’s a quirky and down-to earth look at the industry. The podcast has been around since 2020 and there are about 40 episodes to choose from, covering topics as diverse as sexting, kink, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and COVID lockdown.
Jenn and Tess have a natural conversational rhythm that feels a bit like I’m simply listening in on a really interesting chat. And because they have experience in sex work and mental health settings, their views are both thoughtful and informed.
So much choice…
…and so little time! Just kidding. As I wait for the end of Melbourne’s lockdown, I have plenty of hours to fill, and I’m very grateful for the sexy workers in my headphones who have helped to pass the time. Whether you’re out for your daily walk or having a slow day in the office, these incredible shows are sure to change your day for the better.
I’ve also recently launched a new podcast exclusively for escort clients, called The Satisfaction Project. Please check it out and let me know what you think!