Urban Achiever
Ua simplecastheader 4

A podcast about love, loyalty, faith, friendship and music.

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    Sally Grayson Returns

    Sally Grayson has returned to the studio to record a new EP called "Desert Rain" with legendary producer Sylvia Massy (Johnny Cash, Tom Petty, Foo Fighters). We're going to talk about that and some other stuff like recording through pickles and the studying art in Minneapolis. Don't forget to drop some coin to Sally to support her new EP!

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    Matt Traxler

    Matt Traxler of Brandtson and Steadfast Records is on the program! We talk about his near death van experiences, raccoons as pets, how he got into music and much more. Enjoy!

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    Andy Verdecchio

    Andy Verdecchio (Five Iron Frenzy) has been through the fires of life and lived to tell about it. We talk about his days growing up fighting in south Philly, older brothers, improvised drum hardware, dumpster fires, scary sandwich shops, fun nickname inducing hairdos, shantytown gigs, how he put his faith in something different, his tougher than nails cancer-survivor wife and more. Somebody gets stabbed in the head. It's not him, don't worry! Also, a special guest appearance from Walter, Andy's cat.

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    Randy Torres

    Randy Torres (Nyves, Crash Rickshaw, Project 86) was just a teenager when he starting off on his journey into music and sound. After making records with Project 86 and Crash Rickshaw he would later re-locate to the pacific northwest, spending time at Tooth & Nail Records and Microsoft. But bigger things were in the works and he would soon be headed back down south and into the desert. It's not all glamour, though, as Randy de-mystifies the actual hard work of making films for Hollywood.

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    Joby Harris

    Joby Harris (Crash Rickshaw, NASA) left his home in Pennsylvania for Hollywood to follow a dream inspired by Death Stars, Wookies, Droids and the special effects that created them. But it was friendship and two miracles that aided him in his pursuits of music and design. He dubs my laugh a "Power Massage" and explains to me the importance of long hair as a symbolic entry point to the counter culture. We also talk about anxiety, his time at Disney Imagineering and the downsides of working with toxic dangerous chemicals.

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    Chris Raines

    It's trivia time on Urban Achiever! Listen in as drummer Chris Raines of Sunndrug, Norma Jean and Spitfire attempts to name all the tracks on Def Leppard's "Hysteria" album and then turns the tables on me to name the first 20 releases on Tooth & Nail Records. It's not all fun and games as we also discuss the perils of owning a record store, dubious touring van situations, popular songs in strip clubs and more!

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    Joe Nixon

    I had no idea that Slick Shoes drummer Joe Nixon was born in another country. I also didn't know he grew up listening to Engelbert Humperdinck. These are just a few of the shocking revelations from this fun chat with my pal Joe. We also dig in to how he met shredder guitarist Jackson Mould, good places to day drink in the desert and much more. It's going to be sick!

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    Kat Jones

    My guest this week, Kat Jones (Kat Jones & The Prophets), has found inspiration in everything from the musical Annie to horror movies like Leprechaun and Ginger Snaps. Her personal journey has taken her from Fresno to Oklahoma to Edinburgh to Nashville to Oregon and back - running from the mob, surviving floods, dabbling in witchcraft and more along the way. And in the midst of it all she has heard God speak, often directly, in a way she feels in her bones. Get ready for a glorious time!

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    Ballz Palzy

    Hello, Achievers! I kicked off the first couple months of the new year with a fun case of Bells Palsy. Find out about that, documentaries and shows I've been watching and more.

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    Every Day Is Garbage Day

    It feels like every day is garbage day in NYC. Maybe it is. Maybe it should be. Not just here, but everywhere.

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    36 Days and The City That Is Never Finished

    They say that New York is "The City That Never Sleeps" but it's also "The City That Is Never Finished" and the same can be said of me and my trip through this life. I just survived 36 and then some of the most challenging days I have experienced. I am happy to be on the other side, moving forward. Thanks for listening!

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    Death, Life and Musicals

    100 Episodes! I know, I can't believe it either. I spent the last month figuring out a way to celebrate or commemorate or something. And, unfortunately I came up empty. So, here's another 17 or so minutes of me ruminating on my life and various "struggles." Thanks for listening! Here's to another 100 and more!

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    More Complicated Than That

    Are we making things too complicated? Am I kicking my own ass? Also, thoughts on Homeland, Harry Potter saga, carpeting and more.

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    Mental Health Day

    I took a mental health day on Saturday. I needed some time off to slow down for a minute. Plus, college updates, thank you knuckle tattoos and more!

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    You're the DJ

    I just spent four days in Philadelphia for a conference. I think I had a good time. We'll just have to see about that.

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    Existential Crisis

    Hello, friends! It's a new week and a new you! Well, we can at least try can't we? Some talk today about Macon Blair's new movie "I Don't Feel at Home in this World Anymore," as well as updates on Love For Kitui and Sally Grayson's Indiegogo campaign. Is that enough? No? Well, there's always next Monday!

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    Sally Grayson

    It's a great time to be alive, to be an American...living overseas! I know, Achievers, that not all believe this is a dystopian future we're living in. But people in other countries wonder what we are doing. They really, wonder. Sally, who hails from the magical land of Michigan, is one of those people. When she's not pondering how we've lost our collective conscious she's making really bad ass music, or performing on the German version of The Voice, or giving a Ted Talk or being a mom. Sally's got a new Black Swift - that's the name of her band and it's no bullshit, let me tell you! She's got a brand new album coming out called "See Me Human" and she's got some stuff to say about it. Get ready!

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    Hello, friends! Beware of Blizzard Stella which is headed our way. It's about to get blizzardy up in here. Is that a word? Probably not. Oh well. Some words about my friends at Love For Kitui, 100 year old security guards, home improvement, self-improvement, improvement improvement. It's only 15 minutes long, you'll get through it.

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    Jesse Sprinkle

    Jesse Sprinkle (Poor Old Lu, Demon Hunter, Dead Poetic, Morella's Forest) is stuck in my mind as a 13-year-old drummer for Bell Bang Villa, a Seattle area band who had recently changed their name to Poor Old Lu. I am still having a hard time accepting that he's now a 40-something husband and father of five who has been to Africa eight times and runs a recording studio (Bluebrick Recordings) in upstate New York for a living. Listen in as a couple of old guys try to figure out how they got to where they are now.

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    Open Books

    Happy Monday, Achievers! Today, a few good words from a friend of the program Joel Eastlick regarding immigrants and African Americans. Also, a movie you may or may not want to watch, an incident involving Fletcher from the band Pennywise and a good report from my doctor.

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    Lost Plots

    Some talk about the Oscars, the Wonder Years and I'm going to preview clips from 3 different Spoken In Tonuges pre-production demos.

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    Area of Rescue Assistance

    Life. Death. Italian Food. Cartoon movies. Horror movies. Thanks for listening!

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    Just Sing

    This week we're (and by "we're I mean me) going to talk about the importance of just singing. Also, how the brain changes itself, cooking iguanas, where to invade next, a college update and much more!

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    The Will to Succeed

    This week we're going to examine perception versus reality and context. Also, some Super Bowl ads and some history of The Clash.

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    Ignorance is Bliss

    Ignorance is bliss. Or is it? It can be comforting to put your head in the sand, but maybe not too deep. Some thoughts on college, the end of another show season, Homeland, Vikings and more!

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    Just Say No

    Hello, dear listeners! Sometimes saying no is just as important as saying yes. Or rather, it's good to say no to the wrong things in your life. I'm trying that out. Also, my new diet of overwork and not eating has me dropping weight like crazy.

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    Opt Out

    Too much noise. Too much information. Not enough compassion or room to breathe. Also, some chatter about Vikings, Colin Quinn and more. Happy Monday!

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    Josh Kemble

    Josh Kemble (Dogwood) is playing some reunion shows this weekend with MxPx in California. But long before his band days there was Missouri and strange housing arrangements involving foreign exchange students. These days, though, Josh is doing some awesome work involving at-risk youth and cooking. These are the good times!

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    Winter Woes

    Happy Monday! It's 8 degrees and we're living in a frozen tundra. Today I talk about Oliver Stone's latest series, a couple movies by Jeremy Saulnier and more. Happy Winter!

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    Fake Banker Holidays

    That's right, it's a new episode! On a Monday?! What is happening?! I'm going to talk about that and more. By the time you hear this I will already be at work. No holidays for us working stiffs!

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    Good Riddance 2016

    Thank God, 2016 is finally coming to a close. It was mostly bad, but not all bad. I'm going to talk about some of the not-so-bad things from the year.

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    Aaron Stone

    As a teenager, Aaron Stone (My Epic) saved up his own money to buy his first guitar, a Gibson SG. This was an early indication of the kind of vision and purposefulness he would show in the years to come. On today's program, we discover the fate of that guitar, explore Aaron's upbringing and his five years living with friends and bandmates in Charlotte, North Carolina neighborhood Optimist Park serving the local community.

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    Liberty and Justice for All

    We just had an election and I have some thoughts about it. These are those thoughts.

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    Apocalypse Now

    Tune in to URBQ.fm this Sunday, November 6th at 8pm for the 2 hour debut of the Make America Punk Again radio show. Then tune in Friday November 11th at 9pm Eastern for The Street Justice Radio hour with Dan Brimstone. Thanks for your support!

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    Taylor Weston

    Taylor Weston (Alderbrook, Vanguard Symphony) loves living in Arkansas, except for the humidity. And we will make fun of Taylor's home state, but I assure you it's all in good fun! We also learn what it's like to be in a graduating class of 8 people. And Taylor makes the case for still buying music on CD...in a store!

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    Bryan Patton

    Bryan Patton (The Meltdown, Echo Broke Alone, Something Beautiful Records) has been doing podcasting a lot longer than me. He also thinks it's a good idea to start a record label in 2016, so like a lot of us, he's a mixed bag. I kid! I kid! Speaking of kids, Bryan was the oldest of 8! Sensitive listeners beware, we do talk about Bryan trying to murder his sister at least twice! OK, maybe he didn't try to murder her, but he did try to chop off her fingers. After all that, he finally found a Church that accepts his crazy views on Genesis. There may or may not be a story about Bryan physically running into Henry Rollins at Whole Foods. How much of this is true? Tune in and find out!

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    Make America Punk Again Vol. 3

    This week we're going to conclude my look back on 40 years of Rodney On The ROQ and that shows priceless influence not only on me but countless bands, musicians and fans. But, really this is just the beginning of something.

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    Make America Punk Again Vol. 2

    This week we're continuing our celebration of the 40th anniversary of legendary Los Angeles based radio show Rodney On The Roq. This was the show that primarily introduced me to punk rock and underground music, changing me in the process. That was the day classic rock died for me and I pretty much never looked back. We're going to imagine what it might have been like in the summer of 1979 for me to turn my radio dial and discover this music for the very first time. Join me as we try to Make America Punk Again Vol. 2!

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    Make America Punk Again Vol. 1

    This week we're celebrating the 40th anniversary of legendary Los Angeles based radio show Rodney On The Roq. This was the show that primarily introduced me to punk rock and underground music, changing me in the process. That was the day classic rock died for me and I pretty much never looked back. We're going to imagine what it might have been like in the summer of 1979 for me to turn my radio dial and discover this music for the very first time. Join me as we try to Make America Punk Again!

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    Strange Transmission

    What could this be? What does this mean? What is this strange transmission?

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    The End of Letters

    Alright Achievers, the Letters Trilogy officially comes to an end with this episode, The End of Letters. We've got postcards from bands, corrections from punk zines, letters from disappointed parents, letters of recommendation, letters from congressmen and more. It's all leading up to something that's not really even a letter. What could it be? Tune in and find out!

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    More Letters

    I have returned to The Archives from Tooth & Nail mail order, Blenderhead, Point Blank and such. It seems there is a deep well of these strange artifacts from the past called letters. Things written in pen and pencil on paper, placed in an envelope and sent through the mail with stamps! I know, I know...very strange indeed! One of these letters makes me look bad...so bad...painfully bad. I hope you enjoy more letters!

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    What's up Achievers? I took a little dig into The Archives this week and pulled out some letters. Letters to Tooth & Nail. Letters to Blenderhead. Fan letters. Business letters. Good letters. Bad letters. I hope you enjoy a little look into the past this week.

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    Toby Morrell

    Toby Morrell (Emery, BadChristian, The Unstoppable Badass) was in jail once. Ok, twice. He was also a wrestler...for a couple of months. And then in a shocking unexpected turn of events, he "got saved" at a backward masking CD burning. This was, of course, years before he was a well known touring musician, author, podcaster, entrepreneur, father and comedian. A fun conversation with my friend and sort of boss, Toby!

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    Mike Dunn

    Mike Dunn describes his time in "the Beverly Hills of the south," Winter Park, Florida as where he lived in the cheapest place in the best area. We explore Mike's idyllic childhood where he loved his small Catholic school and entertained himself by crushing his grandparents empty beer cans. His upbringing was not particularly religious, but by his own admission he did collect prayer cards "like baseball cards" and had a small shrine in his room. We try to get to the bottom of what happened to "the Kings of New England," but not without touching on his divorce, his teaching job and what inspired the single "Faith Healer" from his latest album "Hard Luck Soft Rock."

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    Shealeen Puckett

    Shealeen Puckett (Poema) almost gave up playing piano at the age of 10, but her parents wouldn't let her due to the cost of buying a piano. It's a good thing they didn't cave in, because there's a lot of fun she would have missed out on. For example, playing a show outside in 116 degree weather with a broken keyboard stand! We explore the special bond shared with her sister Elle, childhood hobbit adventures involving 8 meals, the appeal of audiobooks and changing brain chemistry through water color painting. We also get deep on Israel, miracles and healing. There will be no FOMO (fear of missing out) on this one!

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    Jordan Butcher

    Jordan Butcher (The Weather, Copeland, Studio Workhorse) caught the art and music bug as a pre-teen and he's been headed down the road ever since. Hear about why he calls his art school education an expensive mistake and how he's managed to be a working drummer with zero musical training. We talk about how Jordan landed his "dream job" at Tooth & Nail Records where he created album artwork for Underoath, Anberlin, the No New Kinda Story film/book and more. We also explore his time at Mars Hill Seattle before and after the implosion. Drum nerds - we get in deep on tone, tuning and cymbals. Design nerds - we reflect on the current state of graphic design and what keeps Butcher in it.

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    Aaron Ford - Part 2

    We get back into it for the 2nd hour with Aaron Ford (Bluetip, Forget Cassettes, The Sincerity Guild, And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead). We begin at his entry into the Dischord Records band Bluetip and then through a litany of bands that culminated in his "8 months or more a year" touring and recording with Trail of Dead. And we also learn about his new career in the culinary world. Get your pens and paper together and be ready to take notes!

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    Aaron Ford

    Aaron Ford (Bluetip, Forget Cassettes, The Sincerity Guild, And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead) was just a kid from small town Georgia playing air drums with pencils and then Hit Stix to his favorite RUN DMC cassette. But then a magical moment on a neighbors orange Ludwig vistalite drum set changed everything. In this first hour of two we learn about those early days where he practiced for "6-8 hours a day" while working at a meat and three with "a bunch of women over 70." You will not believe where it all leads.

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    Elle Puckett

    Elle Puckett (Poema, Eisley) was already touring the country playing music at the age of 15. From growing up in the "desertier" Albuquerque, New Mexico suburb of Rio Rancho to life in Nashville and now Portland, Elle has experienced a life in music far beyond her years. She is a gifted songwriter, guitarist and vocalist who has been performing with her sister Shealeen since they were 10 and 12 years old. Hear how they used every vehicle available to criss cross the country on the Warped Tour in 2010 and how a chance encounter with sisters from the band Eisley in a bathroom at SXSW led to her current role as their guitarist. This and much, much more!

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    Marty Lunn - Part 2

    Marty Lunn (Pensive, The Operation, Zao, Young Fox) returns for a 2nd hour in Part Deux. We talk about how he ended up in Zao for the last 12 years, how he introduced me to Element 101, his early encounters with Aaron Weiss of mewithoutYou and we finally get to the bottom of the "band without pants"! This one has something for everybody. Get into it!

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    Marty Lunn

    Marty Lunn was there at the beginning, middle and end (was there an end?!) of our scene. He was nervous it sounded like he was name dropping in this episode. But, in fact, it's only because the list of groups he has been involved with is so exhaustive...Pensive, Seasins In The Field, Sans Culottes, The Operation, Zao, Young Fox, The Juliana Theory, Element 101, Further Seems Forever and more. This epic 2 hour adventure begins with our journey from NYC into the Lincoln Tunnel. Hold on to your hats!

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    Ryan Weaver

    Once upon a time Ryan Weaver was playing bass in Joe Christmas and Spudgun/World Against World, taking a genre ride from indie rock to punk and black metal. That was a lifetime ago, before Ryan became a husband, father and owner of Kingdom Tattoo in Decatur, Georgia. We dig into the archives and dust off the musical memories including recording with Bob Weston, shooting off fireworks in the studio and the stage setup that freaked out all the midwesterner church people. Also, he teaches me the secret to putting patches on things.

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    Tim McTague

    Tim McTague (Underoath, Carrollhood) was born in New York and moved to Florida with his mother as a baby. As you will hear, that's just the beginning of a beautiful story of broken things being made new. Tim is not just a guitar player and founding member of ultra popular and influential metal band Underoath. He's also a husband, a father and an entrepreneur. We talk about a recent near death experience, parenthood, the community he calls his "last church," building that "5th great spot" in Tampa and much, much more.

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    Josh Blackway

    Josh Blackway (Huntingtons) played with Joey Ramone at CBGB's when he was 19 year old. Not a bad start! During and after and then during (again) his time in the Huntingtons Blackway toured Europe with Marky Ramone and then more recently with CJ Ramone. When he's not punk rocking around the globe you might find him surfing or co-hosting the Absolute Awesome Show.

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    Scott Windsor

    My guest Scott Windsor (The Lyndsay Diaries, Umbrellas) knows a thing or two about beer and how to make it. But before he became the self-proclaimed "beer nerd" he is today he was touring the country playing music. He even had some songs on Grey's Anatomy. For real! Scott has a great sense of humor and you will enjoy the fun we had!

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    Brian Manley

    Brian Manley (Fun With Robots) took a winding path from metal drumming to youth group leader at the Crystal Cathedral, finally landing with his current career as a graphic designer. From the midwest to California and Atlanta, Brian has been around. Today, when he's not selling Black Metal coffee mugs, he creates awesome artwork for bands like Manchester Orchestra, Yellowcard, Taking Back Sunday, All Time Low, Gasoline Heart and many more.

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    Jake Brown

    Jake Brown has been in a lot of bands! From Moments In Grace to Twothirtyeight, En Maase, Decahedron and more recent projects The Eastern Wave and Veranear, Jake has definitely left his mark. We talk about his time on a major label and I try to get him to explain, rather unsuccessfully, what makes Florida great. He's also been helping out local musicians through his imprint, Computer Club Records, since 1999. If you listen close toward the end, I think we just started a new band. Get into it!

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    Jeremy SH Griffith

    Jeremy SH Griffith is a producer who has worked on albums by Saosin, Norma Jean, Underoath, Gasoline Heart and many more. But before he got busy making records he went to college on a football scholarship, worked at the School for The Blind and bounced between the south and the north. Jeremy's perseverance through the many heartbreaking losses he has encountered in his life is inspiring.

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    Conrad Tolosa

    My guest this week is Conrad Tolosa (Ghoti Hook, Decapolis, Fast God Stuff). Conrad was a founding member of the band Ghoti Hook and ran a seminal music related website called Decapolis, during the 90's and later. These days Conrad is on the theology tip with his new venture Fast God Stuff.

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    Chris Estey - Part 2

    Chris Estey (Big Freak Media) returns to fill in the blanks from where we left off last time. We talk about how Chris kicked drugs, how he found faith, his days publishing the seminal Counter Culture fanzine, Seattle's samurai sword wielding maniacs and more! You're always only hitting the tip of the iceberg with Chris. Listen in as I try to keep up!

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    Chris Estey

    Join me from "The Temple Of Dead Media" with my guest Chris Estey of Big Freak Media. Chris is a writer, poet, publicist and genius (in my opinion) who is a walking encyclopedia of knowledge on music, pop culture, fanzines, movies, comics, literature, history and more. Estey is also a long time friend who made critical contributions to the 90's Seattle underground music scene including my former band, Blenderhead. Good luck keeping up!

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    Ryan Parrish

    Ryan Parrish (Hopesfall, Celebrity, In Parallel) was able to have the rare privilege of recording an album produced by one of his favorite artists (Matt Talbott of Hum) and then later becoming part of a band he was a fan of when he joined Celebrity after being a founding member and guitarist of the band Hopesfall. But it all started with One Amazing Kid, Strongarm and the search for music with a message that was both beautiful and heavy.

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    Keller McDivitt

    Keller McDivitt (Dungeon Beach, Vomitface, The Ted Kennedys, Jared Micah & Hats, The Ascent of Everest) has come a long way since his childhood days in west Tennessee when he was working at Sam Goody and learning about music through "Matt Pinfield, Beavis and Butthead." He transcended his small redneck town upbringing to become a partner in a post production recording studio in Brooklyn, New York and yet still remains a punk at heart.

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    Katie Kaboom McConnell

    Katie Kaboom McConnell is the accordian player and backing vocalist in The Mahones, an Irish punk band from Canada celebrating their 25th year making music. She is a self-proclaimed musician, artist, minister and hugger who has overcome addiction and health scares. Katie has a huge heart to give back to others and a love for life.

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    Joe Musten

    Before Joe Musten (Beloved, Advent, The Almost) was touring the country and quitting bands because of unscrupulous managers, he was ditching out on P90X workouts to eat at Cracker Barrel. While he may not be the best spokesperson for his home state of North Carolina ('it's cheap'), he does like to smile and laugh a lot, which is just fine by me. We also try to get to the bottom of what's standing in the way of a Beloved reunion. It's not what you think!

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    Zak Shultz

    My guest this week, Zak Shultz (Dear Mr. Peterson, My Red Hot Nightmare, Stairwell), is somebody who has followed his dreams with abandon. After a relationship break-up, a truck break-down and an unfortunate band dismissal - he found his calling as a firefighter. He has survived 7 bouts with Malaria and chronic spinal stenosis. But nothing prepared him for the loss of his "baby sister" and 2 uncles in the past few years. We talk about the impact of those events on his life and what it might all mean.

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    The Podcastalypse - Part 3

    Welcome to the conclusion of the 1st annual Podcastalypse! Join me, Mark Salomon (Never Was) and Mike Lewis (Giving Is Believing) as we shoot the shit about the issues of the day. Recorded in New York City in December and filled with grumbling and vulnerability. We try to get to the bottom of it all. Part 3 of 3.

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    The Podcastalypse - Part 2

    Welcome to the 1st annual Podcastalypse! Join me, Mark Salomon (Never Was) and Mike Lewis (Giving Is Believing) as we shoot the shit about the issues of the day. Recorded in New York City in December and filled with grumbling and vulnerability. We try to get to the bottom of it all. Part 2 of 3.

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    The Podcastalypse - Part 1

    Welcome to the 1st annual Podcastalypse! Join me, Mark Salomon (Never Was) and Mike Lewis (Giving Is Believing) as we shoot the shit about the issues of the day. Recorded in New York City in December and filled with grumbling and vulnerability. We try to get to the bottom of it all. Part 1 of 3.

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    Dusty Redmon

    Dusty Redmon (Beloved, Dead Poetic, The Almost) is a guy who has found contentment in his life through faith, music and family. After many years and most of his youth on the road he's settled into what he calls a "normal" life. Also, is Beloved getting back together or what?!

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    Ethan Luck & The Intruders

    Ethan Luck (Kings Of Leon) returns on the 1 year anniversary of his appearance on the first first episode of Urban Achiever. We get into how Ethan became a Vegan, what we think about Starbucks cups and other fun. More importantly we go track by track on Ethan's new EP that comes out on Tuesday, December 8th!

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    Matt Carter

    Matt Carter (Emery, Bad Christian, Break It Down) has journeyed from a house on a dirt road with no house number to touring the world with his band Emery. He is somebody who should have the words "make it work" tattooed somewhere on his body. From re-wiring the rental storage unit his band used to practice in to converting buses and starting podcast networks - Matt is somebody who knows how to get things done.

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    Aaron Irizarry

    Aaron Irizarry (Point Of Recognition) knows what it means to own his faith. He is a husband, father, graphic designer, author and all around legit brother. But his journey was not always filled with positivity. We'll get into some hard lessons he had to learn in his late teens and how he turned things around.

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    Bottle Breaker

    This week we're going to take a look at my new book, Bottle Breaker. Bottle Breaker is my tour journal from my former band Blenderhead's 1995, 7 week, national tour with labelmates MxPx. We'll listen to stories from that tour with previous guests Matt Johnson (Blenderhead), Joel Bell (Ghoti Hook) and Mike Herrera (MxPx) and I'll read an excerpt from the book.

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    Ryan Rado

    My guest Ryan Rado (Colson, Ill Patriot, Worker) and I worked together in Nashville at a music merch company called Zambooie. Ryan struggles with conditions that very few of us understand (Tourette's and OCD) and he does it with an attitude that is inspiring. These days he's attempting to provide for his family by creating art and paintings which are beautiful.

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    Ray Harkins

    Ray Harkins (Taken, 100 Words Or Less Podcast, PETA) turned 35 this week and he's my guest for episode 35. Coincidence? Providence? You decide! Either way, Ray is once of the nicest guys in hardcore. Harkins has spent time working for labels like Abacus, Century Media and No Sleep as well as fronting the band Taken. He is also the host of his own podcast, 100 Words Or Less as well as a Senior Partnerships Manager for animal rights organization PETA.

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    Joel Eastlick

    Joel Eastlick (Defeating Olympus, Eastlick Coffee) came up in the south Florida underground music scene. But, it was a two year mission to Spain that changed his life and faith forever, sending him down the road to the coffee industry and New York City.

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    Tess Wiley

    Tess Wiley (Splendora, Phantasmic, Sixpence None The Richer, Velour 100) is a talented singer, songwriter, artist and music teacher. We'll get into her upbringing in Texas, musical influences and explore the meaning of words like sanguine, choleric, melancholic and certitude. We'll also dip into the serious sides of her divorce, faith and if she'll ever return to America.

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    Johnny Thief

    A couple decades ago Johnny Thief (Seppuku Tattoo) was a zine publisher (Thieves & Prostitutes) and I was a guy playing in a band. Since that time Johnny dove head first into the art world eventually becoming a world renowned rock poster and tattoo artist. His story, as you will hear, is filled with more twists and turns than a Hollywood blockbuster. I'm amazed that Johnny has survived, let alone thrived and you will be too.

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    Andy Atkins

    When I first met Andy Atkins (A Plea For Purging) we were working together at a merch company called Zambooie and he was going by the name "Dozer." But Andy would go on to bigger and better things. As you will learn, however, life is not without bumps and bruises. Andy has a way of laughing at the hard stuff. It's a quality I admire. I love the guy and soon enough you will too.

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    Jamie Hilsden

    Jamie Hilsden (Man Alive) was born in Canada, moved to Israel, then back to Canada, then back to Israel again where he started a band with his brother and was later joined by the Shkedi brothers who were half Texan and half Israeli. He also married a girl from Poland. Seriously, this guy has been all over the place! Just listen, it will all make sense in the end, I promise!

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    Jason Vena

    Jason Vena (Acceptance) has been through band and marriage break-ups and has lived to tell the tale. A decade after their demise and playing to 2-300 people a night, his band Acceptance returned this year to sold out shows on both coasts and more enthusiasm for their music than ever before. Stories of love, friendship and redemption await!

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    Kris Roe

    Kris Roe (The Ataris) took time out of his busy schedule with the Blue Skies, Broken Hearts...Next 12 Exits tour to have a chat with me. We talk about 20 years of The Ataris, major label days versus current touring, his musical upbringing, first concert and more.

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    Mike Herrera

    Mike Herrera (MxPx, Tumbledown, The Mike Herrera Hour Podcast) has been putting food on the table playing punk rock for over 20 years! On this episode Mike and I get into our national tour from 95, reasons for leaving labels and religion, police states, people throwing bread at Smash Mouth and more!

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    Matt Fox

    Matt Fox (Shai Hulud) is a force to be reckoned with! His band is celebrating their 20th anniversary this year and they show no signs of slowing down. We chat about his early musical experiences and his love for Sick Of It All and Metallica. How does such a nice and positive guy who loves Men At Work end up playing such aggressive and angry heavy music? Tune in and find out!

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    Joel Bell - Part 2

    Joel Bell (Ghoti Hook) returns for another hour this week. We get into the recording of later albums Two Years To Never and the 6 Songs EP, line-up changes, festival kick-outs, prayerful promoters and WWJD. And we reveal the meaning behind the phrase, "ladies, for the sake of Christ, put some clothes on!" PART 2 OF 2.

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    Joel Bell

    Joel Bell (Ghoti Hook) is my guest this week. His story is a mosaic filled with Whitney Houston, Faith No More, Whitecross, violins, saxophones, misunderstood newsletters, Assemblies of God Teen Talent competitions, banana costumes, tour shenanigans, proper mic technique and more! If you like to laugh, then this is the episode for you! PART 1 OF 2.

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    Jeff Bettger - Part 2

    Jeff Bettger (Ninety Pound Wuss, Raft Of Dead Monkeys, Suffering & The Hideous Thieves, DRYBNZ) returns for a 2nd hour this week. This round we discuss his 16 year involvement with the former Mars Hill Church in Seattle. We also get an update on what Jeff's up to these days and we try to answer the question is "kicking ass" a fruit of the spirit? PART 2 OF 2

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    Jeff Bettger

    Jeff Bettger (Ninety Pound Wuss, Raft Of Dead Monkeys, Suffering & The Hideous Thieves) is somebody who sees Jesus in the music of the Sex Pistols. He's an artist in the truest sense of the word. In this first hour we get into his first musical experiences, the formation of Ninety Pound Wuss and what it was like to grow up punk and Christian in a small hick town. PART 1 OF 2

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    Mike Lewis - Part 2

    Mike Lewis (Go Big Win, HOPErageous) is back for a 2nd hour this week. Mike is my best friend, former boss at Zambooie (RIP) and business partner in This Shirt Changes Lives. This go around we get into Mike's time in Puller, how he ended up going to Africa and why he's currently doing charity work in Haiti and thinks you should too. PART 2 OF 2

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    Mike Lewis

    Mike Lewis (For Love Not Lisa, Puller) is my best friend and he's also made some of my favorite records! Long before Mike was making trips to Africa and Haiti doing for charity work, he was playing basketball with Warren G and opening for bands like Bad Brains, Green Day, Rage Against The Machine and Fugazi. Life stories like Mike's are why I started this podcast. Turn it up! PART 1 OF 2

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    Nate Henry

    Nate Henry (Sherwood, The Begging Sea) was inspired by a birthday party cover band covering Nirvana to pick up a guitar himself and see what might happen. From his high school bands Summer Snow and Another Dead Hero to Sherwood, MySpace Records and touring with Hanson - Nate's life so far has been full of surprises and a lot of hustle. Don't let that calm exterior fool you, he's a damn good singer, bassist and songwriter as well. I'm a fan and when this is all over I'm sure you will be too!

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    Scott Kerr

    Scott Kerr (Five Iron Frenzy, Yellow Second, Pool Party Death Machine) has been to the top of the mountain, the valley below and all the villages in between! We explore Scott's background growing up in the Church and his journey away from faith. We also get into his bouts with basketball, skateboarding, the trumpet, guitar, bass and more. Perhaps, the most shocking revelation is that I didn't completely destroy his music career while managing his band, Yellow Second. Finally, we get into all things Five Iron Frenzy. You didn't think we'd leave that out, did you?

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    Chad Neptune - Part 2

    Chad Neptune's (Further Seems Forever, Strongarm) story is one of perseverance. In part two of our conversation we go through the various vocal changes FSF went through as well as how they ended and later reformed. We also get into Chad's family's involvement with orphans in Rwanda. PART 2 OF 2

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    Chad Neptune

    Chad Neptune (Further Seems Forever, Strongarm) is a great example of how somebody with no formal music training can end up creating incredible and influential music. From two miserable teen years in Texas to his first trip to Cornerstone festival and being asked to join his first band, he's been on an epic journey! Chad is one of my favorite bass players and people! PART 1 OF 2.

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    Dan Richter

    Dan Richter (Fieldstrip, Hockey Fight) came up in the NYHC and NJ straight edge/punk rock/hardcore scenes. We get into adolescent identity, forming politics, recording songs from speakers, hardcore kids who love Morrissey and why Oprah sucks. Dan also introduces me to the concept of the "bad pancake."

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    Seth Werkheiser

    Seth Werkheiser (Buzzgrinder, Noisecreep, Skulltoaster, Workbench Podcast) knows what it means to hustle! He also knows what riding 70 miles on a bicycle feels like. Seth has been responsible for creating and curating a mighty mountain of content on the internet. He was also once the bass player in Pink Daffodils and sole member of a one man band.

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    Danny Papa

    Danny Papa (Element 101, Project Stay Gold) was a guitarist and founding member of the New Jersey based band Element 101. In this episode we explore what growing up Italian in New Jersey is like, the importance of influence and the thrill of victory as well as the agony of defeat of being a touring musician. We also get into what he's doing these days as a high school History teacher.

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    Matt Johnson - Part 2

    Matt Johnson (Don't Know, Blenderhead, Roadside Monument) and I have been friends for over 20 years. He was the drummer in numerous bands and is also a writer, husband and father. In part 2 of our interview we get into Matt's experiences with Mars Hill Church in Seattle as well as his plans for music and writing in the future. PART 2 OF 2.

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    Matt Johnson

    Matt Johnson (Don't Know, Blenderhead, Roadside Monument) and I have been friends for over 20 years. He was the drummer in numerous bands and is also a writer, husband and father. In part 1 of our interview we get into Matt discovering punk, learning to play the drums and the beginnings and endings of his various music projects. Matt is the best drummer I ever played with and one of my favorite people. PART 1 OF 2.

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    Chris Wible

    Chris Wible (Dry Bones, Crawlspace, Everdown) is a man of many talents including drumming, cycling, surfing, landscaping and ... impregnating! We get into Chris' younger days in Jersey, when he first discovered his love for the drums, to his involvement in the straight edge hardcore punk rock scenes of Boston and New Hampshire. Warning: This episode contains some junior high school level humor.

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    Louis DeFabrizio

    Louis Defabrizio (Dear Ephesus, Tenderfoot, The Kick, Gasoline Heart) is literally and mover and a shaker. I have seen Lou perform and delight fans in Florida, Tennessee, Kentucky, Georgia and New York! His stage banter is something you will not soon forget. But perhaps those wild days are behind Louis as he's about to become the father of twins! This episode features two brand new and unreleased songs by Gasoline Heart, "Poor Decisions" and "Love Let Her Go." So chill!

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    Chris "Buka" Martello

    Chris "Buka" Martello (Argyle Park/AP2, MTV) has the rare distinction of being a non-musician who has put out two records. Buka and I go back to a strange time where kids recorded music video shows onto VHS tapes. We dig into the history of Circle of Dust, Argyle Park and his time as a producer at MTV.

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    Mikee Bridges

    Mikee Bridges (Gecko Monks, Sometime Sunday, Tragedy Ann, Tom Fest, Star Went Nova, Game Church) is my guest this week. Mikee has played many roles including bassist, singer, concert promoter and russian bar evangelist. He is a "what you see is what you get" kind of guy, which obviously makes him one of my favorite people. Enjoy!

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    Chad Pearson

    Chad Pearson (Mold, Militia Group, P Is For Panda, Reach) and I first encountered each other when he had just landed his "dream job" at Tooth & Nail Records. He went on to start his own booking agency and multiple record labels. He's had a significant hand in the careers of numerous bands including Rufio, Cartel, Brandtson, Copeland and Gasoline Heart. These days he's making big things happen at Reach Records in Atlanta, Georgia. He’s a humble guy who knows how to hustle. Chad is one of the "good guys" in a business full of villains. It's an honor to call him a friend.

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    Sean O'Donnell

    Sean O'Donnell (Dogwood, Reeve Oliver, Yellowcard) and I first came to know each other when I was his A&R guy in the 90's. Sean is a talented songwriter, vocalist and multi-instrumentalist as well as recording engineer and producer. Be sure to check out Sean's fantastic new album "Spirit Junkie."

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    Mark Salomon - Part 3

    Mark Salomon (The Crucified, Stavesacre, Outer Circle, Neon Horse, White Lighter) and I have been friends for almost 30 years. We first met in the mid 1980'd through the magic of photo-copied music publications called fanzines. He is a published author and all around legit bro from back in the day. THIS IS PART 3 OF A 3 PART INTERVIEW!

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    Mark Salomon - Part 2

    Mark Salomon (The Crucified, Stavesacre, Outer Circle, Neon Horse, White Lighter) and I have been friends for almost 30 years. We first met in the mid 1980's through the magic of photo-copied music publications called fanzines. He is a published author and all around legit bro from back in the day. THIS IS PART 2 OF A 3 PART INTERVIEW!

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    Mark Salomon

    Mark Salomon (The Crucified, Stavesacre, Outer Circle, Neon Horse, White Lighter) and I have been friends for almost 30 years. We first met in the mid 1980's through the magic of photo-copied music publications called fanzines. He is a published author and all around legit bro from back in the day. THIS IS PART 1 OF A 3 PART INTERVIEW!

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    Ethan Luck

    Ethan Luck (The Dingees, The OC Supertones, Demon Hunter, Relient K) has been in more bands than anybody I know. He has also been a tech with the Cold War Kids and more recently with Kings Of Leon. He recorded and performed (with Dan Spencer) the Urban Achiever theme song. Get into it!

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