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Episodes
  • Raising the Game Trailer

    Aug 19 2021

    Did you know that a Black man helped make the multi-billion-dollar video game industry possible? That man’s name is Jerry Lawson. 

    Lawson, born in Brooklyn and raised in Queens, led the team that invented The Fairchild Channel F, the first commercially-available cartridge-based video game console. The Channel F and the game consoles that followed it revolutionized the industry, opening the door for gamers to buy entire libraries of games and incentivizing companies and programmers to produce more games.

    So why haven’t more people heard about Lawson?

    Podcaster Anthony Frasier dives deep into the mystery of Lawson’s untold story. It’s the true tale of an incredible inventor and engineer who helped to create new devices and launch new ideas that we’re still relying on today.

    Frasier tracks down Jerry’s friends, colleagues and some of the most creative people in business and tech - like Atari founder Nolan Bushnell, Pong creator Allan Alcorn and Chuck E. Cheese co-founder Gene Landrum - to find out who Lawson really was and why he became a “hidden figure” in the world of videogames.

    This is a podcast about struggle, genius, and the secret origin stories of some of the greatest videogames ever.

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    1 min
  • Episode 1 - The Lost Engineer

    Aug 26 2021
    After learning about the incredible accomplishments of Black video game pioneer Jerry Lawson, podcaster Anthony Frasier launches an investigation into his life and legacy.
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    30 mins
  • Episode 2 - Searching for a Genius

    Aug 26 2021

    Anthony talks to Jerry’s friends, family and co-workers to find out how the pioneering engineer changed the video game industry - and he discovers how challenging and complex it can be to assign credit for ideas in the world of inventions.

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    30 mins

About the Creator and Performer

Anthony Frasier is the founder and CEO of ABF Creative, an award-winning data-driven audio company that leverages machine learning and listening technology to produce multicultural and diverse content for brands. Before ABF Creative, Anthony spent over 10 years in the tech industry building ecosystems for innovation in underserved markets, and for underrepresented groups. Anthony also worked for years as an independent audio producer for brands like ESSENCE Magazine, NPR, and BET. In 2016 Anthony authored “Don't Dumb Down Your Greatness,” a guidebook for young entrepreneurs of color, and often travels to speak at conferences for TEDx, Urban League, and AT&T.

Dear Listener,

What inspired me to write this story?
"This story was special to me because I grew up wanting to be in the video game industry but never thought there was a place for me in the business. In the media, the average video game player was depicted as either a super-rich kid or a complete nerd—but in either case, they weren’t Black. The first time I got to visit Silicon Valley, in 2011, I learned about Jerry Lawson when I saw a flyer for a community memorial service for him in San Jose. I attended because I had never heard of him before, and I was amazed when I learned how he helped revolutionize the video game industry by leading the team that created the video game cartridge. I felt proud that someone who looked like me had accomplished so much, but sad that very few people knew he existed. I’ve been fascinated by Lawson’s life ever since, and when Audible asked me what stories we were interested in telling, I knew I wanted to get to the bottom of this one. I had two questions that drove me. Why was Lawson a "hidden figure" in the gaming industry? And how could I get his story out to the world? With this podcast, I’ve tried to find the answers." –- Anthony Frasier, writer and performer of Raising the Game

What listeners say about Raising the Game

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  • 08-30-21

Amazing History

I had no idea and enjoyed learning about Jerry. very interesting and put together well.

1 person found this helpful

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Interesting history if

History wasn’t that far in the past but you wonder if Jerry would have gotten more acknowledgment if his relative contributions were in todays environment. Author made good advocate for Jerry Lawson’s vision and individual contributions to early home gaming breakthrough (eg Atari style game consoles)

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INSPIRATIONAL

This story was magnificently narrated with just the right amount of passion to convey it's authenticity without feeling forced. Jerry Lawsons story really hit home and delivered some important lessons to me, including the power of truly following your passions, no matter what you may face. If only someone like him could have been my mentor. Hmmm...I can take the lessons gleaned here and make the road better for the next generation, as he did for us. Truly inspirational. Thank you for making this!