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The New Exchange with Ken Grand-Pierre
66 minutes | Sep 27, 2022
Giles Duley on the unheeded voices of conflict
This is an episode I’ve been looking forward to sharing with you for quite some time now and it still shatters my mind that it’s happened. Giles Duley is a photographer, writer, CEO, presenter, and cook; who for over a decade has traveled the world photographing people within conflict zones. In 2011, he suffered a grave injury by an IED, causing Giles to lose both of his legs and left arm. Where such an experience would understandably be a bookend for some, it was the exact opposite for Giles. It reignited his passion for photography not as a career but as a function of storytelling. This episode is about the long road it took for Giles to arrive at this point of being a well-respected and award-winning photographer (Giles is a recipient of the May Chidiac Award for Bravery in Journalism, the AIB Founders Award for Outstanding Achievement, AND the prestigious Amnesty Media Award for Photojournalism). Together we delve into the journey Giles went on from being an entertainment photographer to a photographer in conflict zones across Iraq, Afghanistan, South Sudan, DR Congo, and Ukraine. Along with the need to re-contextualize purpose, community, career, success, and truly…the importance of recontextualizing life in general. We don’t normally do show notes for this podcast but in this instance, they’re absolutely necessary: Giles photography website The non-profit Giles founded, Legacy of War The Power of a Story Ted Talk Gile’s cooking/travel show for Vice, One Armed Chef The NHS photos for GQ Hype
57 minutes | Sep 20, 2022
Editors on the heart & soul of EBM (Season 5 Premiere)
Let’s be honest, there aren’t many artists who can say they’re making their most compelling work 17 years into their careers. And yet, this is exactly the case with British band Editors. Across their 6 albums, they’ve continuously challenged themselves & listeners by breaking the conventions of rock music and electronic production; defying all expectations in the process. This has brought them to arenas all over the world, festival headline stages, and now their 7th album, EBM (out this Friday). It brings me so much gratitude that I can call these people my friends & it’s a true privilege getting to kick off season 5 with Tom, Ed, and Ben of the band. Together we go into the specifics of crafting a body of work that plays by its own rules; especially from a personal point of view. The band has a European tour kicking off on October 1st in Spain and a UK and Irish tour kicking off next January at Nottingham on January 25th. For more info on their tour dates be sure to visit their website (here).
79 minutes | Aug 31, 2022
But wait, who the f%$k is Ken Grand-Pierre? (Summer Bonus)
It took only over 100 episodes for me to finally release an introduction episode! But all jokes aside, it hit me a few months back that some of you who’ve gotten into the podcast might at some point have asked; who the f%$k is Ken Grand-Pierre, anyway? The short of it is I’m a photographer that’s traveled with musicians and a person who feels the most comfortable around people who’re from different walks of life. But that doesn’t explain the why’s and the hows of this series. So to make sense of all this, I invited my friend + peer, Toby Tenenbaum, to my apartment to interview me about The New Exchange. Beyond sharing a few laughs, we also explore why this series is important to me and what inspires my belief that everyone has a story to tell. Season 5 of the podcast will be kicking off on September 20th. Be sure to rate, subscribe and leave a review!
32 minutes | Aug 24, 2022
Agustina Ruiz of Los Bitchos reflects on their never-ending party (Summer Bonus)
Let’s be honest, we’re all keenly aware that the world is a dumpster fire. Arguably, we’re overly aware of that, which is why when a band like Los Bitchos comes around; there’s an intense need for celebration. They’re an all-girl band based in London that has one goal: to make you have a great time. That attitude is expressed strikingly so across their debut album, Let The Festivities Begin! (which is out now). To further hit this point home, the band has been on a non-stop run of shows throughout the world, both to headline shows and support acts like Belle and Sebastian and Franz Ferdinand. I caught up with guitarist/multi-instrumentalist Agustina Ruiz after their recent US tour to discuss how the band came to be and her favourite experiences from recording one of the best albums of 2022. Los Bitchos are currently wrapping up a European tour and will be touring the UK starting on September 20th in Bedford. They’ll also be supporting Franz Ferdinand again throughout October, with a massive show at London’s Ally Pally on October 20th. Be sure to visit their website here for more tour dates.
57 minutes | Aug 17, 2022
morgxn on how identity & art are intertwined (Summer Bonus)
What’s it like to not only grow up in a place that’s confused by your very existence but also resistant towards you sharing your heart? Most of us can’t imagine what it’d be like to deal with such hardships and yet, that’s exactly what today’s guest had to deal with; both as a child and as an adult. Say hello to morgxn, an independent singer-songwriter who’s made a name for themselves through collabs with acts like Tiësto, Walk The Moon, and Sara Bareilles, along with their own stellar releases. Their latest album, MERIDIAN, is about challenging what you’ve come to expect, about how the journey is always more important than the destination. On our next summer bonus episode, I chat with morgxn about their experiences of growing up as a queer person in America, navigating both a city and an industry that’s confused by that and they even sing some songs for us throughout the episode (really, what a sweet touch, eh?).
43 minutes | Jul 27, 2022
Joel Culpepper on the irresistibility of your mum’s R&B (Summer Bonus)
We all know that classic R&B sound of the ’70s is timeless, right? Artists like Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder, and Charlie Wilson have all released songs that sound like they could’ve been released yesterday. But, what if I told you that there’s a new guy who’s not only continuing that legacy but also truly building upon it? Joel Culpepper is a deeply passionate British singer-songwriter who doesn’t shy away from celebrating his influences. His debut album, Sgt. Culpepper, effortlessly jumps between vulnerable croons to dance floor anthems full of soul, funk, and yes; that classic R&B. Together we chat about how he turned heads in the UK by performing shirtless across national TV (on Jools Holland actually), his battle with imposter syndrome and how music has helped Joel to understand who he is.
84 minutes | Jul 20, 2022
Patrick Willems returns to discuss Night of the Coconut (Summer Bonus)
What if I told you that one of the best movies of 2022 involved parallel universes, a genocidal coconut, the power of friendship, and a treasure cove of internet culture references? Yeah, it’s true, that movie does in fact exist and it’s called Night of the Coconut, the directorial debut of Patrick Willems. Throughout the years, Patrick has made a name for himself on YouTube with thought-provoking video essays that fuse humor with an endearing passion for storytelling and a seamless sense of whimsy. On today’s bonus podcast, we chat about his film, particularly the unspoken joys and challenges that come from crafting a film. We also delve into why friendship is so crucial to a creative pursuit, and yes: we do talk about that genocidal coconut. Night of the Coconut can be streamed now via Nebula, a streaming platform created by and for creators. Learn more about Nebula here, especially to receive a discount through Patrick’s channel.
44 minutes | Jul 13, 2022
Metric on welcoming you to Formentera (Summer Bonus)
They’re not many bands out there who can say that they excel at challenging listeners, let alone themselves. But legendary Canadian indie band Metric have done just that and the proof is all over their latest offering, Formentera; the band's 8th album. Named after an idyllic island off the coast of Spain, the album explores that universal desire to escape from the madness of life. But is that even possible, especially during a time where so much is in our faces, 24/7? Emily Haines and Jimmy Shaw join me on the first summer bonus episode that’ll bridge seasons 4 and 5 (which begins in September). Metric will be touring North America extensively this summer and autumn, be sure to visit ilovemetric.com for all tour dates.
56 minutes | Jun 28, 2022
Melanie Charles on why Y’all DON’T Really Care About Black Women (Season 4 Finale)
Before we start, I want to give a major thanks to everyone who’s been on the podcast this season, along with a massive thanks to you, the listener. I say it every season but the fact that you’re proactively taking the time to listen to this is huge and it truly means the world to me. Season 4 was such a wild journey, a true blast of technicolor of people from various walks of life. Getting to bring you this was a major life experience for me, largely in reminding me of the importance of other people; why we need to celebrate our differences and take stock of how we all have stories to tell. My guest today is a prime example of that, Brooklyn-born and raised artist Melanie Charles. She is a jazz musician who refuses to be boring and in turn; she refuses to bore you. Her album, Y’all Don’t (Really) Care About Black Women, is both a reworking of famous originals while also being an outward mirror of Melanie’s experiences as a black woman on this place we call earth. On today’s episode, we talk about the deeply personal nature of crafting this body of work and share some heartwarming laughs about navigating the world in our black skin. Melanie will be playing a selection of shows in Canada, Europe, and the UK soon, along with a free show in Central Park on July 16th. Be sure to visit her website tour dates. Season 5 of the podcast will be kicking off in September, be sure to follow me on Instagram and Twitter so you don’t miss out on updates!
35 minutes | Jun 21, 2022
Max Kerman of Arkells on how music can be a rally cry
True story: one of the most ambitious bands on earth hails from Hamilton, Ontario. They’re called Arkells and they’re here to remind you that rock music can be fun, exhilarating, and colorful. Their latest and sixth album, Blink Once, is full of songs that work both for stadium sing-alongs and those quiet walks home from the bus stop. The architect of these songs is frontman Max Kerman, a musician who isn’t shy about the aspirations he has for his friends. On today’s podcast, I catch up with Max about what makes that ambition unique, the ways music can uplift us from dark times, and how music has a lot more in common with sports than you’d think. Big ups to Brooklyn Cannery for hosting us for this talk and after you hear this episode, be sure to also check out Max’s podcast The Best Hang Podcast with Mike Veerman and Shane Cunningham.
85 minutes | Jun 17, 2022
Real Exchanges #4 | PHOTOGRAPHY
I do love these kinds of episodes and we simply had to have one more before this month's season finale. Photography is a passion of mine that’s grown at a rate that quite frankly staggers me. It started as a side-hustle and over time has transformed into a career of sorts. A major form of enrichment that I’ve gotten from photography is how it’s introduced a wild array of people into my life; such as today’s guests. Those incredible people are DeShaun Craddock, Michelle Grace Hunder, and Jenn Five, photographers who aren’t only my peers but also my friends. On today’s episode, we explore how we got started, the experiences that we cherish, and why passion will always be the best antidote to the chasing of clout.
32 minutes | Jun 14, 2022
Yuna on forging a new path through independence
It’s no overstatement to highlight that today’s podcast is with a certified pop star. Yuna is a pop singer-songwriter from Malaysia who’s one of the most successful artists to ever hail from the region. For over a decade she’s released songs that have garnered millions of streams and has collaborated with titans like Tyler The Creator, Little Simz, Pharrell Williams, and USHER. She’s been nominated for over 100 music awards and has won multiple Malaysian Music Awards (the equivalent of the Grammy’s in Malaysia), along with winning a Billboard Music Award, Rolling Stone Award, and a VMA Music Award! Currently, Yuna is on a new path with her career, where she was forced to ask, what do you do after you’ve achieved most of the dreams you’ve ever chased? Surprisingly, the answer is to create a new path, which is what she’s currently doing with her Y5 project. Throughout this year, Yuna will be releasing 5 short EPs, that will eventually lead up to a full album comprising of all the tracks. On today's episode, I chat with Yuna about her feelings behind re-contextualizing her career and what it looks like to forge a new path for one’s self.
49 minutes | Jun 7, 2022
Sampa The Great on why she’s an African Avenger
This is a talk that’s been in the making for quite a while and the amount of joy I have in getting to share this with you is insurmountable. Sampa The Great is a singer-songwriter, poet, and rapper from Zambia and Botswana who’s fiercely unapologetic about what she stands for. A major touchstone of her values is an unwavering love for family, friendship, and culture, but another key focus is a steadfast acceptance of who she is and where she’s going. For years now she’s been praised by outlets like NPR, The Fader, Noisey, NME, Complex, and at this point pretty much the whole fucking world agrees: Sampa the Great is an unbelievable talent. And yet, it still feels like things are only getting started for Sampa, which is what we delve into within today’s podcast. We chat about her return to Africa after years in Australia, the differences between creating music about your home vs. while you're actually there, her now-legendary performance of Final Form at the ARIAS (aka the Australian equivalent of the Grammy's), and so much more.
37 minutes | May 27, 2022
MILCK on the intersection of advocacy and artistry (Bonus)
Connie Lim (aka MILCK) is a singer-songwriter, producer, and esteemed advocate for human rights. Beyond her talent, the most remarkable thing about MILCK is her ability to showcase her principles within her craft, which is something we explore in-depth within today’s bonus episode. I’ll be honest, this is a conversation that left me deeply affected, especially our exploration of the ‘why’; why do we have principles and why do we feel compelled to share them with the world?
57 minutes | May 24, 2022
Tiger Darrow on feeling connected to people through art
I gotta say, it’s kind of crazy how much this episode embodies what this entire series is all about. I say the tagline in every intro (that “everyone has a story to tell”) and it’s honestly something that’s so crucial towards how I see the world; that remembering that everyone has their own individual stories can help me better understand my own. Today’s guest is someone who also believes this, both in the context of her professional and personal life. Say hello to Tiger Darrow, an award-winning singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, and producer from Texas that’s based here in New York City. Her reputation as a producer has made her one of the most in-demand creative voices here in New York, allowing her to collaborate with dozens of artists including L’Rain, Durand Jones and the Indications, Alex Warren, and more. All of the guests of this series are the kinds of people who live life by the beat of their own drum, but I’d be hard-pressed to think of someone who embodies that more overtly than Tiger. Together we discuss how Tiger got involved in music, what drives her creative spirit, and how working with others has helped her grasp a better understanding of the world around her.
50 minutes | May 17, 2022
Frank Carter on the realities of opening a tattoo shop
The best thing about today’s episode is that it doesn’t take long before it gets personal. British punk musician Frank Carter is known for wearing his heart on his sleeve, both on stage and off. Along with being a prolific musician, he’s also a deeply respected tattoo artist, which led him to create Rose of Mercy, a tattoo shop in London. The shop's mantra of “always in bloom, bloom in all ways” drives Carter’s resolve and approach towards business, which are just some of the elements we get into on today’s podcast. We also chat about his band's most recent album, Sticky, which features Frank Carter and the Rattlesnakes at their most visceral. If you’re in Europe, you’ll be able to catch Frank Carter and the Rattlesnakes across numerous music festivals, with a proper tour kicking off later this autumn; starting on November 4th in Sweden. Visit the band's website for more info.
50 minutes | May 13, 2022
Jealous of the Birds on how music can make us soar (Bonus)
You know I love it when we get to have an Irish act on the pod. Say hello to Naomi Hamilton (aka Jealous of the Birds). NPR has hailed her music as a “remarkable gift” and once you hear her album, Peninsula, it becomes obvious how that came to be. Throughout the album's 11 tracks, Naomi contrasts sincerity and attitude with flecks of indie rock, folk, and soul. Similar to previous guests on this series, Naomi has achieved a sound that’s distinctly her own and that’s exactly what we discuss on today’s bonus podcast.
52 minutes | May 10, 2022
Ezra Furman on manifesting a future for trans people
For the last 15 years, Ezra Furman has released some of the most daring music in the indie rock world. Along with putting out critically acclaimed albums, she’s also toured the world with an unbelievable live band, has DJed for the BBC and she also created the soundtrack for Netflix’s hit show, Sex Education. But now, Ezra is gearing up to release the most personal music of her life, in the form of her next album, All Of Us Flames (out August 26th). Part of the album features Ezra being candid about not just her experience as a trans woman in the states but also as a mother; an aspect of her life she shared with the world very recently. This is an episode dripping in honesty, an unflinching resolve, and moments of humor in which Ezra doesn’t hold back from sharing her thoughts and feelings on the dire support of trans people. Creating this episode was a massive privilege, as is getting to share it with you, big thanks to Ezra for being so open, and another thanks to you for listening to today’s podcast. Ezra Furman and her amazing band will be touring the states starting on May 19th in Los Angeles, along with an additional US tour kicking off in October. Be sure to visit Ezra’s website for more tour dates and info.
49 minutes | May 5, 2022
BARKAA on why First Nations people are here to stay (Bonus)
I can defiantly say that you have never come across an artist like BARKAA before. She’s a Malyangapa, Barkindji woman based in Sydney, Australia who is using rap to tell the stories, the truths, and the issues impacting First Nations people. But part of representing a group is being able to also tell your own story, which is something BARKAA does in a fierce manner that’s continuously unflinching. At a young age, she found herself addicted to drugs and alcohol, leading to several stints in juvie and prison (where she also gave birth to her third child). Music provided solace, a means to tell her story, and it was through music that she climbed out of this abyss to release music that’s gone on to win the hearts of critics and fans alike. In a few short years, BARKAA has gone on to perform at iconic venues like the Sydney Opera House and having her music integrated within the curriculum in Australian schools; to educate students on racism and the plights of indigenous people. But how did this all come to be? Well, you’re going to have to listen to today’s bonus podcast to find out.
46 minutes | May 3, 2022
Samm Henshaw on unearthing beauty in the mess of life
Samm Henshaw is an unbelievably talented singer and producer from London that’s unabashedly elevating R&B to new heights. The most striking thing about Samm’s music is how it has this throwback vibe from his love of soul and gospel, yet his music never feels out of place within our modern age. His debut album Untidy Soul, presents Samm as a clear student of music, with a warmth that’ll undoubtedly catch you off-guard. Lyrically, the album sees Samm embracing the fact that we’re all a little fucked up inside and that there’s a beauty in trying to have a better day than the last. On today’s episode, we chat about the importance of those life lessons and how they can inform the work that goes into our art. You can catch Samm Henshaw live during his upcoming US tour that will be kicking off on June 3rd at the Cafe Du Nord in San Francisco. Be sure to visit Samm’s website here for more tour dates. Also be sure to check out the official New Exchange Playlist, which features a song from each musical guest that has guested on the series.
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