CityLife Arts

Popular youth oriented YouTube channel Podcast and Chill with MacG goes mainstream as Chanel O beckons

By Edward Tsumele

He has been fired on radio, several times actual. But now he is climbing the broadcast terrain, and this time using a self-founded channel, new technology and with no startup capital to talk about.

His secret to success is content that relates to the target market. And yes, MacG’s podcast called Podcast and Chill with MacG, will make you cringe sometimes, especially when you are old. It is because the hosts tell it as it is, and no subject is spared. Some celebrities even fear to be featured there, but end up going there simply because they want to reach the audience, especially musicians and actors wishing to grow their audience for their products, such as new releases, beverage brands or cosmetic lines that seem to be popular with local celebrities eager to develop new revenue streams during these hard and uncertain times of Covid-19 induced financial and economic difficulties. If you are old or conservative, however the language on the podcast may make you feel uncomfortable, and it is certainly a channel that you cannot watch with your teenage boys or girls. Watching with your teenagers could be awkward.

But then it is really not meant for that category of people as its core  audience seem to be those that are young and are hungry for celebrity gossip, raw politics and raw sex talk, delivered in the language the youth do understand and often use in the streets with liberal abandon.

Having been fired from YFM and 94.7 radio stations, Mac G was forced to create employment for himself, and now other young people too. He did that by starting the podcast, which has since grown phenomenally.

Now, just like his tagline in his podcast: he is back and he is causing waves on the airwaves with his probing, casual and informal manner of interviewing mainly his celebrity guests. Tired of often boring and by podcast standard, conservative way of broadcasting on radio, the young people seem to have drifted from traditional channels to the podcast space, which is beyond Independent Communications Authority of South Africa’s (ICASA) regulatory mandate, basically allowing this new crop of broadcasters to say anything they want and they are not subject to ICASA’s regulations where traditional radio stations and TV stations are regulated.

With an ever growing audience, currently standing at 250 000 subscribers and millions of views, Mac G and Chill has become not only an influential channel among the ranks of the youth, but a business success story.

Not even when Old Mutual, the original main sponsor with regards to advertising as well as hosting the recording of the initial shows for free at its MPD Studios in Newtown,’s action of stopping backing the podcast earlier this year over allegations of expressing homophobic views by co-host Solo Phenduka,, has affected the podcast, it seems.

Numbers of its listeners in the face of the controversy continued to rise as its audiences came on board to subscribe for a minimum fee and therefore saving the show from collapse in the face of sponsorship withdrawal amid threats of cancellation.

Solo Phenduka and Mac G

Not only is the podcast invading traditional media’s space, specifically TV, but its popularity seems to be rising unabated.

Only this week the show hosted actress Sonia Mbele, who opened up about her being single, and how she tried Tinder “with  disastrous results”, but that she is now focusing on producing, having gotten the license to produce the Real House Wives  for South African TV from its American franchise owners.

And this week, the podcast announced a major coup on local television –the show is heading to Channel O from September where every Wednesday, the podcast’s celebrity segment will be broadcast there.

It is not known how much this deal with DSTV is worth, but going by the comments from Mac G on this week’s episode of the podcast, it must be substantial.

“The story of being broke will not hold anymore after this major announcement on the show that I will make towards the end of the show. The hungry have now  become financially comfortable” Mac G proudly announced on the latest episode of the show this week. He was referringto the fact that they always joked on the show that they are broke after the cancellation of advertising support.

The reality of the matter is this: Hosted by DJs and radio personalities MacGuyver Mukwevho, Sol Phenduka (formerly at 5FM) and a funny mystery woman who calls herself Ghost Lady, Podcast and Chill,  has become one of the most popular podcasts in the country that brands can no longer continue to ignore as its has the numbers from whom the brands can benefit by placing advertisements for their brands. With over 250 000 subscribers on YouTube, and millions of views, this is clearly an influential platform in the country, and with which its target audience easily connects.

And now being hosted on Chanel O, it simply makes sense that advertisers will eventually come on board, especially if they want to reach the channel’s target audience.

“We love giving our viewers content that is relevant, relatable and topical, and Podcast and Chill with MacG is exactly that. The interviews are always candid, interesting and impossible to ignore. The chemistry between MacG and his guests makes for great television and we’re thrilled to have them join Channel O,” says Nomsa Philiso, the Director of Local Entertainment Channels at M-Net.

.You can tune into the celebrity edition of Podcast and Chill with MacG on Channel O, DStv channel 320, starting on 1 September 2021 at 21:30.

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