Let's be real: I spent about 97 percent of my life in Los Angeles DRIVING. If I wasn't at an overly-priced-avocado-toast-brunch spot talking about how much traffic I just sat in, or sitting on my couch talking about how bad the traffic was coming home from work, I was sitting in muthafricking traffic!!
Traffic feels like it's a living, breathing thing. It has such power to dictate the lives of hundreds of thousands of people who live in that overstuffed metropolis. You feel like you're going insane, there's nowhere you can go to escape and there's nothing you can do about it. Well, I guess you could leave for work in the middle of the night - oh, but the best was the random 3AM traffic for no reason whatsoever! I digress...
In order to combat the frustration and sheer boredom, I would listen to podcasts. It's pretty incredible how much podcasts have grown just over the last year - and by that, I mean, nearly every bachelorette alumnus and their pet turtle has a podcast (I won't even lie, those are some of my favorite ones to listen to!) So many people have podcasts now, that it looks and seems easy! You just get a microphone, stick it in your computer and talk about stuff you care about, and BOOM you have a following and ads that will pay your rent for the rest of your life!
SO SO WRONG!!
When I came to my friend, Kiley about wanting to start a podcast, we both lit up because she had been wanting to start one as well, but was looking for someone likeminded to start it with! We brainstormed at a dog park for hours, and the ideas just poured out of us. We both recognized that there was a need for a podcast that spoke to the actors in the southeast. With this market being one of the fastest growing in the world, and currently at the top of its game, we knew that there would be actors and regular folk alike that were looking for a place to come and listen while on their way to making a name for themselves.
THUS the "No Name Actors Podcast" was born!
Kiley and I have referred to starting a podcast as feeling like learning another language. You run into a lot of technical difficulties and troubleshooting that can feel like you're just running into a wall. Fortunately, it's pretty awesome to have someone on your team that is there to run at the wall with you, and help hoist you over it! Youtube videos and close friends who have started their own successful podcasts have really come to the rescue as well, but we still face little daily struggles that make me ask the question... is this even fun? This is supposed to be fun! I confidently can say that, once we get all of our bugs worked out and we start speaking the podcast language at a basic level, then it will really start to be fun.
And don't get me wrong, the learning process has actually been amazing! Of course, it has already been very rewarding to sit down with some pretty incredibly inspiring people in this town. Kiley and I have had a few awesome moments where we have hi-fived each other, feeling like we really have something special growing.
I have always felt technology-inclined, so you would think that I would be able to pick up the podcast technology quite easily. And we ARE getting there, slowly but surely. It takes many, many hours of watching tutorials, sending frustrated emails to tech support, and editing and editing and... editing. But why do something at all, if you're not going to do it right? We both believe in what we're creating, and we want to put our best foot forward. We want the sound to be impeccable. We want our guests to be relaxed, yet engaging. We want to sound intelligent, yet like you're sitting with us and chatting about life over a mimosa at brunch.
We knew we wanted to keep it simple. So we didn't try to come up with a plethora of gimmicks, but we wanted to put a little creativity into it, to really make the podcast unique and original. So, we decided on only one segment:
"Spill the Tea"
We loved this concept because it's a great way to start the top of the show. Your "Unsweet Tea" is something not-so-great that happened to you in the week, and your "Sweet Tea" is something wonderful that happened to you that week. Of course, it's a little play on the sweet tea culture of the south, that I'm just now, as a transplant, getting used to (and loving!)
We ask our guests in advanced to tell us their favorite beverage, and we clink glasses at the beginning and sip on it! Kiley and I were adamant about agreeing to sip on whatever it is that our guest likes! I think it's obvious why you want to liquor up not only us, but our guest! It's the best way to get people to relax and not feel like they have to put on an act.
We end the episode by asking the guest to "slate", which is a term that only actors might be familiar with, as we always have to slate with every self-tape audition. You normally face the camera, and say "Hey! My name is Amber Neukum, I'm 5'9" (because I want to seem smaller than I really am) I am represented by Atlanta Models & Talent, and I'm willing to learn to ride a dolphin. (Or whatever insane thing they ask you to mention in your slate.)
We knew we needed a killer jingle for the beginning and end of each episode, and we were so lucky to have the master music producer, Dave Hasmann create the absolute perfect one for us! It was honestly mind-blowing how he produced something that encapsulated our vibe to a 'T'. Thank you, Dave!
We also knew we needed fantastic artwork for the podcast app! We enlisted the photographic talents of Chase Anderson, who let us be weirdos in front of a cool blue wall for an hour and only made fun of us once. We're so happy with how they turned out!
As it already has been, the No Name Actors Podcast is going to be a learning curve. But it's so exciting! When we can't figure something out, and we finally have a lightbulb go off and we're able to finally get it to work, we feel on top of the world. When we play our episodes back and we hardly now have to edit, it makes us feel more and more confident in what we're making. It's our own little passion project, and with those, come lots of lessons.
We're so excited to have episodes planned with accomplished actors, casting directors, agents and all of our good friends that are the movers and shakers out here in the southeast market. It's time to really give the southeast a name for itself. Y'allywood is cute and all, it feels good to say 'the Hollywood of the South', but why not give us our own credit? We're our OWN thing. We're capable and we're a force to be reckoned with. And most importantly - we're not going anywhere. If you're in the industry, or even if you're just a young soul trying to figure out how to navigate the world, come and listen. Come and unload and know that you're not alone.
We talk about how hard it is to make friends as an adult.
We talk about getting ditched for better plans.
We talk about source energy and the power of the universe.
We talk about dating and love.
We talk about overcoming fears and overcoming tooth aches (seriously).
The hope is that, whatever you're needing, we might be a place for you to feel a part of the group. Our first episode airs today, March 13th, 2018! It features two amazing actors that we are lucky to call our good friends: Sailor Larocque & Chelle Ramos. Please let us know what you think, what you would like to hear more of, or even what you would like to hear less of! We are so excited to learn, to grow and for all of the conversations we have yet to have!
While we're building our brand, take a look at some of the podcasts below that I like to listen to:
This podcast features a fashion mogul, an entertainment journalist, and a television actress. It's ultra-girly, wildly honest and hilarious, and self-deprecating to boot!
Anna Faris is Unqualified
You know her, you love her. She's unfiltered, crass, yet loving and kind. She's got the amazing ability to disarm her celebrity guests, and incorporates a fun call-in segment on the show that proves to be life-changing time and time again.
Ted Talks Daily
You never know what you're going to get, but they're short and sweet and ever-inspiring.
Ted Radio Hour
These are basically the best-produced long-form ted talks you could imagine. Fantastic, classic Ted talks, combined with fascinating interviews and astounding editing, make for an amazing listen.
Your Favorite Thing Podcast with Wells & Brandi
If you love the Bachelor and you love... Miley Cyrus' sister... then you'll love these two together! He's a seasoned radio host, so he really knows what he's doing, and she loves to make fun of him the whole time, which is pretty hilarious!
If you don't know, now you know. It's the OG of the culty podcasts. Season one, featuring the murder mystery of Hae Min Lee.
Sex Talk With My Mom
I have to shoutout my friend, Cam Poter's podcast! It was one of the first podcasts I ever listened to, and was even lucky enough to be a guest on! It features an uber-smart stand-up comedian and his "sex expert" mother.
The Bitch Bible
Not for the faint of heart! She's feisty, snarky, and obsessed with all things Bravo Network. Sometimes, I have no idea what she's talking about, but her candid nature with equal parts i-don't-give-a-fuck make for a super entertaining hour of my life well spent.
Pod Save America
These gents are the smartest guys in the whole universe. If you're looking to learn about the current political climate, while also laughing at the ridiculousness that is the state of our country, then this podcast is for you!
Make Speidi Famous Again
This one is my very guilty pleasures! If you grew up watching the drama unfold on "The Hills", then you remember that these two were at the center of it. Now, they have who they call "the miracle baby" Gunner Pratt, and Spencer has recently become one of the most watched personalities on Snapchat. He loves hummingbirds and crystals, and none of it makes sense, but it's everything I ever needed and asked for.
Those are just a few to get you started! Which ones are you listening to?
I'm busy working on my blog posts. Watch this space!