Today, you can subscribe to Xbox Game Pass and have 100 games ready to download. But those of us who grew up in the gaming golden age know the joy that came from owning a video game console and a collection of game cartridges. Did you know that the first video game console with cartridges was pioneered by a black video game engineer? You might not have known this, because it wasn’t widely celebrated. Until now. On August 26th, Audible and ABF Creative will release Raising The Game, the audio documentary that details the career of Jerry Lawson, the first black video game engineer.
Founder of The Koalition, Anthony Frasier, will narrate the three-part series that highlights Jerry Lawson’s trailblazing career. Relive Jerry’s notable position at Fairchild Semiconductor, where he was appointed to create the Fairchild Channel F games console. This was the first console to hit the market with interchangeable game cartridges.
Raising The Game features never before heard stories from Pong creator, Allan Alcorn, Atari founder Nolan Bushnell, former Chuck E Cheese president Gene Landrum and a number of industry experts who witnessed the greatness of Jerry Lawson.
This is a series that gamers cannot ignore if they dare to call themselves video game historians. In Raising The Game, you’ll learn Jerry Lawson’s role in the infamous Atari versus Activision lawsuit and how Jerry was impacted by the video game market crash in the early 80s.
If you’re a longtime follower of The Koalition, you’ll know that the story of Jerry Lawson has been close to Anthony Frasier’s heart for over a decade. The entire staff here at The Koalition is proud to finally see this compelling story of Jerry’s career reach the ears of millions of gamers.
In addition to being voiced by Anthony Fraiser, Raising The Game was written by The Koalition co-founders Anthony Frasier and Gary Swaby and includes extensive research and contributions from Editor-in-Chief Richard Bailey Jr. The series will release as an Audible Original on August 26th, 2021.
Pause the game and mark the date in your calendar.
More on Jerry Lawson
Did you know that a black man helped make the multi-billion-dollar video game industry possible? That man’s name is Gerald Lawson, often referred to as Jerry Lawson.
Lawson was born in Brooklyn, NY, and raised in Queens, NY. After playing Pong for the first time, Jerry Lawson created his very own video game arcade in his garage. It was named Demolition Derby. His employer at the time, Fairchild, was threatened by Jerry’s creation and decided to build an entire video games division around him in the company. Fairchild Semiconductor would enter the video games market for the first time, with Jerry Lawson at the helm.
In 2019, Lawson was honored with the ID@Xbox Gaming Heroes award for leading the development of the first cartridge-based game console. Today, an elementary school in Los Angeles honors his name, being called Gerald A. Lawson Academy.
Lawson’s story combines struggle, genius, and the secret origins of some of the greatest video games ever produced. But why doesn’t the world hold Jerry in the same light as they hold other impactful pioneers? That’s a question that Anthony Frasier aims to find an answer for in Raising The Game.
Find more thought-provoking podcast shows produced by ABF Creative.