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95 minutes | May 20, 2022
Episode 535: Gabriel Kahane
On today's episode, I talk to composer and singer-songwriter Gabriel Kahane. Originally from Venice Beach, California, Gabriel has been making albums for almost a decade and a half, starting with his self-titled album which was released on Family Records in 2008. Gabriel comes at much of his songwriting from a conceptual standpoint - on his 2014 album The Ambassador, he used ten addresses in LA to write songs from the perspectives of characters both real and imaginary, his 2018 album Book of Travelers was based on a cross-country train trip he took, and his first concert work Craigslistlieder set real Craisglist ads to music. In addition to his songwriting, Gabriel has also been commissioned to write dozens of pieces for orchestras, festivals and theaters, and his latest album Magnificent Bird was just released at the end of March on Nonesuch Records! This is the website for Beginnings, subscribe on Apple Podcasts, follow me on Twitter.
76 minutes | May 13, 2022
Episode 534: Kelly Thompson
On today's episode, I talk to Eisner Award-winning comics writer Kelly Thompson. After graduating with a degree in Sequential Art from The Savannah College of Art & Design, Kelly began her career as a novelist, penning two books in the early 20-teens, The Girl Who Would Be King and Storykiller. She soon began writing comics with some creator-owned series through Dark Horse and Boom, as well as on the IDW series Jem & The Holograms, among many others. This led to writing for Marvel, where she's written many critically acclaimed and well-loved books including Black Widow, Captain Marvel, Deadpool, Uncanny X-Men, Rogue & Gambit and Hawkeye, among many others! This is the website for Beginnings, subscribe on Apple Podcasts, follow me on Twitter.
84 minutes | May 6, 2022
Episode 533: Frontperson
On today's episode, I talk to musicians Kathryn Calder and Mark Andrew Hamilton. Kathryn and Mark have been making music in different bands for years. Kathryn is a member of The New Pornographers, has released three albums under her own name and was in the indie pop group Immaculate Machine from 2003 to 2011. Similarly, Mark's primary band since the mid-aughts has been Woodpigeon, who have released over two dozen albums and EPs since their formation. After a chance meeting in the hallway of a recording studio, the two vowed to form a band together one day, and in the late 20-teens, they did just that! Their first self-titled album was released in 2018, and their latest Parade was just released last week on Oscar St. Records! This is the website for Beginnings, subscribe on Apple Podcasts, follow me on Twitter.
70 minutes | Apr 29, 2022
Episode 532: Linqua Franqa
On today's episode, I talk to rapper, academic and politician Mariah Parker AKA Linqua Franqa. Originally from Louisville, Kentucky, Mariah wears many hats. As an academic, they earned their master's in Linguistics at the University of Georgia in 2017 and are currently a doctoral student in Language and Literacy Education at the University. As an activist and politician, Mariah ran for and won county commissioner in District 2 of Athens, Georgia. And as a rapper, they've released two wonderful albums, Model Minority in 2018 and their latest Bellringer, which was just released on Ernest Jenning Record Co., and it's great! This is the website for Beginnings, subscribe on Apple Podcasts, follow me on Twitter.
71 minutes | Apr 22, 2022
Episode 531: Carey Mercer of Frog Eyes
On today's episode, I talk to musician Carey Mercer. Originally from Okanagan, British Columbia, Carey formed the band Frog Eyes in the early 2000s out of the ashes of his former band Blue Pine. From 2003 until 2018, they wrote and released almost a dozen albums and EPs on labels like Absolutely Kosher and Dead Oceans. And in that time, Carey also released a number of solo albums, as well as with the supergroup Swan Lake featuring Destroyer's Dan Bejar and Wolf Parade's Spencer Krug. In 2018, Frog Eyes disbanded, but four years later they are back with a new album The Bees, which is out on Paper Bag Records, and as usual, it's fantastic! This is the website for Beginnings, subscribe on Apple Podcasts, follow me on Twitter.
77 minutes | Apr 15, 2022
Episode 530: Andrew Farmer
On today's episode, I talk to TV writer and actor Andrew Farmer. Originally from Florida, Andrew is a recipient of the 2018 Jonathan Larson Grant, and his work has been produced at The Museum of Modern Art, Ars Nova, Playwrights Horizons Downtown, Joe’s Pub, The Williamstown Theatre Festival, The Walker Space, Theater Aspen and The Yale School of Drama. As a podcaster, he hosted the long-running Forever Dog podcast Scary Stories to Tell On the Pod, and as a TV writer, he's written for Miracle Workers and the forthcoming animated show Praise Petey. This is the website for Beginnings, subscribe on Apple Podcasts, follow me on Twitter.
57 minutes | Apr 8, 2022
Episode 529: Dan Erickson
On today's episode, I talk to TV writer Dan Erickson. Originally from Olympia, Washington, Dan earned a Masters in Dramatic Writing from NYU’s Tisch School before moving to LA where he worked a number of day jobs and journeyman writing jobs for places like Super Deluxe and things like Spike’s Lip Sync Battle Pre-Show. In 2016, his hourlong pilot, Severance, became the first TV script ever included on The Bloodlist, an industry list of the best unproduced scripts. This led to a meeting with Ben Stiller's production company, and eventually the show Severance, which is easily one of the best of the last decade. Its first season on Apple TV+ is just wrapping up, and it's already been renewed for a second! This is the website for Beginnings, subscribe on Apple Podcasts, follow me on Twitter.
68 minutes | Apr 1, 2022
Episode 528: Lennon Parham
On today's episode, I talk to actor, writer and improviser Lennon Parham. Born in Marietta, GA, Lennon was acting from a young age, but it was when she moved to New York and started improvising at UCB that her career began in earnest. Performing on a number of house teams at the theater, Lennon eventually moved to Los Angeles, where she booked a regular role on the sitcom Accidentally On Purpose. Since then, Lennon's been a working actor, has had recurring roles on shows like Veep and Lady Dynamite, has had other regular roles on shows like Bless This Mess, and co-created and co-starred in two fantastic shows Best Friends Forever and Playing House. Currently, Lennon is part of the cast of the HBOMax series Minx, airing now! This is the website for Beginnings, subscribe on Apple Podcasts, follow me on Twitter.
66 minutes | Mar 25, 2022
Episode 527: Cadence Weapon
On today's episode, I talk to rapper Rollie Pemberton AKA Cadence Weapon. Born and raised in Edmonton, Alberta, Rollie began rapping as a teenager, and released his first mixtape Cadence Weapon Is the Black Hand at the age of 19. He released his first album Breaking Kayfabe just a little later, and since then he's released four more albums, all of which were nominated for Polaris Music Prizes, with his latest Parallel Worlds winning the award in 2021. Rollie was also named as Edmonton's Poet Laureate from 2009 to 2011, and today, the deluxe edition of Parallel Worlds is out via MNRK Music Group! This is the website for Beginnings, subscribe on Apple Podcasts, follow me on Twitter.
61 minutes | Mar 18, 2022
Episode 526: Kevin Huizenga
On today's episode, I talk to comics creator Kevin Huizenga. Originally from South Holland, a small town of Dutch immigrants in the suburbs of Chicago, he attended Calvin College in Grand Rapids, Michigan, which is where he started drawing the influential mini-comic Supermonster. After moving to St. Louis, Kevin started the comic book series Or Else, the strip Leon Beyond with Dan Zettwoch, as well as his acclaimed series Ganges. Much of Kevin's work has been published by Drawn & Quarterly; he's won five Ignatz awards and been nominated for Harvey and Eisner awards; and he's constantly creating mini-comics which you can get on his website - one of my most recent favorites is his Rumbling series, but you'll never go wrong with anything he makes! This is the website for Beginnings, subscribe on Apple Podcasts, follow me on Twitter.
59 minutes | Mar 11, 2022
Episode 525: Jim Starlin
On today's episode, I talk to Eisner Award Hall of Fame comics creator Jim Starlin. Originally from Detroit, Jim broke into comics in the 1970s, first as an art director at Marvel, and then moving into being an artist and eventually a writer, working on books like Iron Man and Captain Marvel. During his decades at Marvel, Jim created or co-created many of the characters and wrote many of the stories that eventually made up the backbone of the MCU, including Shang-Chi, Adam Warlock, Drax the Destroyer and Thanos, his work eventually leading to the Infinity Gauntlet. And this is just a small sampling of the things he's written and drawn. At DC, he wrote Batman, including the famous story Batman: A Death in the Family, and currently he is working on a new Dreadstar graphic novel! This is the website for Beginnings, subscribe on Apple Podcasts, follow me on Twitter.
80 minutes | Mar 4, 2022
Episode 524: Julie Doiron
On today's episode, I talk to musician Julie Doiron. Originally from Moncton, New Brunswick, Julie's musical career began with the acclaimed indie rock group Eric's Trip which formed when she was just 18. While the band was only together six short years, they put out a number of albums on Sub Pop, as well as numerous EPs and 7"es, and just before they stopped playing together, Julie began to record songs on her own. Since then, she's released over a dozen solo albums, as well as collaborations with groups like Wooden Stars and Mt. Eerie. Her last album I Thought of You was released late last year on You've Changed, and in April, her latest album Julie & Dany, which she recorded with her partner Dany Placard, will be released on Simone Records. This is the website for Beginnings, subscribe on Apple Podcasts, follow me on Twitter.
80 minutes | Feb 25, 2022
Episode 523: Basia Bulat
On today's episode, I talk to musician Basia Bulat. The daughter of Polish émigrés, Basia was born and raised in Toronto's Etobicoke neighbourhood and grew up listening to her mother's piano students. She attended the University of Western Ontario where she received a degree in English and began an MA in English at Western in 2006 but moved to Montreal to record "an audible memory" of her time there which resulted in her debut album. Since then, she has recorded five more albums, is a three-time Polaris Music Prize finalist, and has been nominated for three Juno Awards. Her latest album is an orchestral reimagining of a number of her songs entitled The Garden, and like the rest of her work, it's great! This is the website for Beginnings, subscribe on Apple Podcasts, follow me on Twitter.
69 minutes | Feb 18, 2022
Episode 522: Nels Cline
On today's episode, I talk to musician Nels Cline. Nels is best known these days as the lead guitarist in the band Wilco, but his recording and performing career — spanning jazz, rock, punk and experimental — is well into its fourth decade, with over 200 recordings, including at least 30 for which he is leader. Nels has received many accolades including Rolling Stone anointing him as both one of 20 "new guitar gods" and one of the top 100 guitarists of all time. Beyond Wilco, Nels performs in a duo project with guitarist Julian Lage in addition to a quartet, The Nels Cline 4, collaborates with his partner Yuka Honda as the duo CUP, leads The Nels Cline Singers and that is just a brief survey of his many projects. His most recent albums are Wilco's 2019 record Ode to Joy and The Nels Cline Singers' 2020 album Share the Wealth. This is the website for Beginnings, subscribe on Apple Podcasts, follow me on Twitter.
60 minutes | Feb 11, 2022
Episode 521: Martha Wells
On today's episode, I talk to author Martha Wells. Martha has been a sci-fi and fantasy writer since her first novel was published in 1993, and her work includes The Books of the Raksura series, The Death of the Necromancer, the Fall of Ile-Rien trilogy, The Murderbot Diaries series, as well as media tie-in stories for Star Wars, Stargate: Atlantis, and Magic: the Gathering. And this is just a sampling of her work, which it should be noted, has appeared many times on the New York Times Bestseller List. As well, over the last few decades, Martha has been recognized for her writing with numerous Nebula, Hugo, and Locus Awards, as well as a Philip K. Dick Award nomination or two. And most recently, The Murderbot Diaries novel Network Effect won the 2021 Nebula Award and Hugo Award for Best Novel, while the series itself won the 2021 Hugo Award for Best Series. This is the website for Beginnings, subscribe on Apple Podcasts, follow me on Twitter.
79 minutes | Feb 4, 2022
Episode 520: Matthew Herd of Seafarers
On today's episode, I talk to musician Matthew Herd. Originally from Glasgow, Matthew is a Scottish songwriter, composer, and saxophonist living in east London. He's the Musician in Residence at Habs Boys’ School and co-directs the Habs Jazz Summer School, and plays in a number of different groups. One of these is his band Seafarers, which he formed in 2013 while studying saxophone at the Royal Academy of Music. Their debut album Orlando was released in November 2020 to widespread acclaim, and their second album, II, is out now, and it's fantastic! This is the website for Beginnings, subscribe on Apple Podcasts, follow me on Twitter.
73 minutes | Jan 28, 2022
Episode 519: John Linnell
On the 12th anniversary episode of Beginnings taped back in December, I talk to John Linnell of They Might Be Giants! Raised in Lincoln, Massachusetts, John Linnell began writing music with his friend John Flansburgh in high school, and after playing in a number of bands formed TMBG with Flansburgh in 1982. From 1986's self-titled album to today, the band has released over fifty albums, compilations and EPs, has won two Grammys and was even nominated for a Tony Award. John hasn't produced a lot of solo work, but his State Songs album is great, and I wish his Roman Songs EP (sung entirely in Latin) would have been released in the '90s so I could have played it in Latin class to the bemusement of my teacher. Most recently, They Might Be Giants have released a 144 page book and album entitled BOOK, and much like everything else from their 40 year career, it's wonderful! This is the website for Beginnings, subscribe on Apple Podcasts, follow me on Twitter.
68 minutes | Jan 21, 2022
Episode 518: Logan Lynn
On today's episode, I talk to musician Logan Lynn. Born in York, Nebraska, Logan eventually moved to Portland after a tumultuous childhood. His musical career began there when he was discovered by The Dandy Warhols.Since 1998, he's released over a dozen albums and EPs on labels like EMI and Caroline, hosted NewNowNext Music on the Logo Network, and in 2021 was named one of the OUT100 in the Performers of the Year category by Out Magazine. This is just a small smattering of his accomplishments. His latest album New Money is out now on Kill Rock Stars! This is the website for Beginnings, subscribe on Apple Podcasts, follow me on Twitter.
80 minutes | Jan 14, 2022
Episode 517: Wendy Eisenberg
On today's episode, I talk to musician Wendy Eisenberg. Wendy is an improviser and songwriter who uses guitar, pedals, the tenor banjo, the computer, the synthesizer and the voice. Though often working solo as both a songwriter and improviser, with acclaimed releases on Tzadik, VDSQ, Out of your Head, and Garden Portal, they also perform in the rock band Editrix, and in endless other combinations. Towards the end of 2020, Ba Da Bing! released their album Auto, and their latest, Bent Ring, was just released at the end of last year on Dear Life Records. Both are great! This is the website for Beginnings, subscribe on Apple Podcasts, follow me on Twitter.
90 minutes | Jan 7, 2022
Episode 516: John Vanderslice
On today's episode, I talk to musician John Vanderslice. Raised in rural North Florida, Vanderslice was forced into piano lessons as a young child, and eventually picked up the guitar and started writing songs as a teen. After moving to San Francisco in 1989, John made three records as a part of the experimental band MK Ultra, including the critically-acclaimed The Dream is Over. His obsession with recording craft persisted: while working as a waiter at Chez Panisse in 1997, he opened Tiny Telephone Recording as an affordable outlet for the Bay Area’s indie rock community. Between 2000 and 2014, John released 10 records on Barsuk, Dead Oceans, and Secretly Canadian, and collaborated as a producer and musician on records by Spoon, the Mountain Goats, Okkervil River, Death Cab for Cutie and Tune-Yards. Taking a break from his own recording, he became a full-time producer for a number of years, and in 2018, John decided to leap back into his solo career with full force, releasing a number of albums and EPs, the latest of which is a tribute to Dave Berman entitled "John, i can’t believe civilization is still going here in 2021! Congratulations to all of us, Love, DCB" This is the website for Beginnings, subscribe on Apple Podcasts, follow me on Twitter.
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