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Listen Closely

Listen Closely

By Alec Cowan
Half mood board, half audio journal. From the days and life of Podcast Producer Alec Cowan.

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Spoken Through: Mayleah's Story
Mayleah's story.
40:21
July 17, 2022
Spoken Through: Joelle's Story
Joelle's story. 
23:54
July 03, 2022
06.25.2022 | What would you do | Washington, DC San Francisco, CA Seattle, WA
I've always been bad at journaling. I've started four to five notebooks, but have only ever finished one (last year). Lately, I've been thinking about alternate life plans, spent time, different timelines. I revisited some experiences in my journal to remind myself a bit about who I am, and where I've gone. I wanted to take you on that journey as well.
07:55
June 30, 2022
Spoken Through: Mike's Story
Mike's story.
27:05
June 17, 2022
4.29.2022 | Sound + Fury | Seattle, WA
Music + audio = podcast. Fans + sport = atmosphere.
10:40
June 10, 2022
Freesound Exercise 3: Philosophies
It goes like this: use a random word generator to source ten sounds from freesound.org. Then, combine them together to make an interesting sound.
08:38
May 22, 2022
1.10.2021 | Greg Hawkins, Acting in The Philippines
A mission leads to a change, a change to an opportunity. What's life like when you find sudden fame? 
36:20
March 01, 2022
2.20.2022 | Poems in the Park
Join me for a sunny winter day in the park, along with some Mary Oliver poems.
13:34
February 26, 2022
11.6.2021 | Waiting for the bus
Audio poem? Audio journal? An errant note on my phone turns into an experience.
04:04
February 07, 2022
Freesound Exercise 2: Ventriloquism
It goes like this: use a random word generator to source ten sounds from freesound.org. Then, combine them together to make an interesting sound.
02:44
January 10, 2022
2021 Year in Sound
The sounds that filled the cracks of 2021.  -- How did this episode make you feel? If you have a moment, please fill out this short survey: https://forms.gle/SUcphdvFDRkN4eNa9 -- Your responses will not be used for anything without additional contact and will help shape the future sound of diary entries. Want to take part?  Reach out at podcastalec [at] gmail [dot] com.
31:12
December 31, 2021
Freesound Exercise 1: Almost a religion
It goes like this: use a random word generator to source ten sounds from freesound.org. Then, combine them together to make an interesting sound. "A religion, almost a religion, any religion, a quintal in religion, a relying and a surface and a service in indecision and a creature and a question and a syllable in answer and more counting and no quarrel and a single scientific statement and no darkness and no question and an earned administration and a single set of sisters and an outline and no blisters and the section seeing yellow and the centre having spelling and no solitude and no quaintness and yet solid quite so solid and the single surface centred and the question in the placard and the singularity, is there a singularity, and the singularity, why is there a question and the singularity why is the surface outrageous, why is it beautiful why is it not when there is no doubt, why is anything vacant, why is not disturbing a centre no virtue, why is it when it is and why is it when it is and there is no doubt, there is no doubt that the singularity shows." Excerpts from the poem Tender Buttons, part 3, "Rooms" by Gertrude Stein. Reading by Ariane Stolfi, in preparation to be performed at the Web Audio Conference in Berlin (19-21 September 2018). Words for this exercise included: Iron Bake Social Conservative Microphone Demonstrator Item Quaint
01:28
December 29, 2021
8.17.2021 | Send a postcard | New York, NY
Hello from the street, the tunnels, and a basement full of jazz. -- How did this episode make you feel? If you have a moment, please fill out this short survey: https://forms.gle/SUcphdvFDRkN4eNa9 -- Your responses will not be used for anything without additional contact and will help shape the future sound of diary entries. Want to take part?  Reach out at podcastalec [at] gmail [dot] com.
10:53
November 13, 2021
4.27.2021 | Leaving California | San Jose, CA and Seattle, WA
A chance for something new, and a chance to do something over. I ask the question: how do you leave a place properly? -- How did this episode make you feel? If you have a moment, please fill out this short survey: https://forms.gle/SUcphdvFDRkN4eNa9 -- Your responses will not be used for anything without additional contact and will help shape the future sound of diary entries. Want to take part?  Reach out at podcastalec [at] gmail [dot] com.
23:23
September 30, 2021
The pacifistic origins of anime
In the 1940s, Osamu Tezuka was drawing manga panels in his spare time when he realized something: due to government censorship, nobody was willing to talk about the problems that led to WWII. And so, with a pen in hand, he set to change that -- and what he created ended up changing the world. -- Read the full story here: https://aleccowan12.medium.com/how-anime-took-off-in-the-u-s-8d6354557867 -- How did this episode make you feel? If you have a moment, please fill out this short survey: https://forms.gle/SUcphdvFDRkN4eNa9 -- Your responses will not be used for anything without additional contact and will help shape the future sound of diary entries. Want to take part?  Reach out at podcastalec [at] gmail [dot] com.
16:13
August 09, 2021
Spoken Through: Andrew's story
"It was goosebumps and hair standing up and... And just peace... This is God's peace he is giving you. It's just, I felt calm because I knew it was over. And I had gotten God's attention. I had gotten God's approval, and that meant everything to me."
42:15
June 28, 2021
Spoken Through: Sarah's story
"So it was a matter of, for me. You know, I'm doing my very best for God. I'm donating my gifts of the spirit. I am doing all these things. I am so into my church and my people, and I do everything that God says, and I listened to the sermons and take notes as best as possible. But I have yet to be possessed by the spirit and speak the language of God."
32:34
June 28, 2021
Spoken Through: Avie's story
"It creates this anxiety that just isn't necessary, you know? What's the meaning of life? What is my purpose? What am I supposed to do? And like, if you, if you just step away and you're like, why, why do I need that frame? Why can't I just exist in this moment, and experience it, and then move on to the next thing?"
30:22
June 28, 2021
Spoken Through: Isaac's story
"It was like they had this double life where you wanted to be normal. You wanted to experience normal things, but you couldn't, and you were just kind of locked into this controlling mindset where... You were feeling guilty about things you enjoyed.. and it was just the most ridiculous way to live. But that was reality."
26:36
June 28, 2021
Spoken Through: Dr. Kathryn Keller on spiritual abuse
"It's not just deconstructing your belief system and, you know, talking about it and thinking about our thoughts, it's literally neurologically kind of untangling and retangling into a place that is a better fit and a healthier fit for you. It's a painful process, but it is possible. It is possible to recover."
31:09
June 28, 2021
Spoken Through: Overstory
This project seeks to answer questions about my Pentecostal experience, as told through my experience and the journeys of other ex-Pentecostals. There is one Overstory episode, which includes my personal experience and the composite stories of a handful of ex-Pens. Start there. Throughout this audio story, longer cuts from each individual interview are provided to give a broader context to each person's story. These interviews focus solely on the individual's journey, and my experience takes a backseat. After all, Pentecostalism encompasses nearly 200 million people around the world, with numerous sects and branches. These individual stories help shed light on our contrasts and comparisons, and the story concludes with a discussion on spiritual abuse, along with a number of other interviews not included in the Overstory. I recommend you take time to listen to the Overstory in addition to each individual interview to gain a more comprehensive understanding of Pentecostalism in its various forms.
01:01:50
June 28, 2021
Trailer: Spoken Through
What do you know about Pentecostalism? Growing to 200 million people in the last 100 years, it's a spirited and feisty sect. But it's famous for more than its growth -- its fervent prayer, isolationism, and belief in the "gifts of the spirit" make it one of the most controversial -- and cultic -- Christian faiths. In this upcoming short-run documentary, I explore my upbringing in the Pentecostal church and speak with other ex-Pentecostals about why they left. And why they believe it's a cult.  Look for Spoken Through in your feeds this April. 
01:51
March 30, 2021
3.21.2021 | Audio Playground, Assignment #18: Roll of the Dice | San Jose, CA
Roll a pair of dice. Make a 1-minute doodle inspired by that number. Guest prompt from Rob Rosenthal and Gwen. Audio Playground is masterfully put together by Sarah Geis, "a radio and podcast maker, editor, and teacher working in Chicago and beyond." Find more information at https://www.audioplayground.xyz/hello -- How did this episode make you feel? If you have a moment, please fill out this short survey: https://forms.gle/SUcphdvFDRkN4eNa9 -- Your responses will not be used for anything without additional contact and will help shape the future sound of diary entries. Want to take part?  Reach out at podcastalec [at] gmail [dot] com.
01:22
March 21, 2021
1.1.2021 | The Same Ocean Twice | Crescent City, CA
"No man ever steps in the same [ocean] twice, for it's not the same [ocean] and he's not the same man." A routine post-vacation phone call diverges into that tricky exercise of remembering. And as Rachel Carson reminds us, can anything remember more than the ocean? -- How did this episode make you feel? If you have a moment, please fill out this short survey: https://forms.gle/SUcphdvFDRkN4eNa9 -- Your responses will not be used for anything without additional contact and will help shape the future sound of diary entries. Want to take part?  Reach out at podcastalec [at] gmail [dot] com. 
23:49
January 15, 2021
2020 Year in Sound
A compilation of the sounds that defined the tempestuous and exhilarating year, 2020.  -- How did this episode make you feel? If you have a moment, please fill out this short survey: https://forms.gle/SUcphdvFDRkN4eNa9 -- Your responses will not be used for anything without additional contact and will help shape the future sound of diary entries. Want to take part?  Reach out at podcastalec [at] gmail [dot] com.
01:28:36
January 03, 2021
2.8.2018 | The Train Retrospect | Eugene, OR
I find a trove of tape for a project that never materialized. This is audio behind the scenes, before the cuts, in their context and without it. Choo choo. -- How did this episode make you feel? If you have a moment, please fill out this short survey: https://forms.gle/SUcphdvFDRkN4eNa9 -- Your responses will not be used for anything without additional contact and will help shape the future sound of diary entries. Want to take part?  Reach out at podcastalec [at] gmail [dot] com.
23:41
December 13, 2020
12.6.2020 | Movin' Out (Michael's Song) | New York, NY
Moving in the middle of a pandemic is freeing, but it ain't easy.  -- How did this episode make you feel? If you have a moment, please fill out this short survey: https://forms.gle/SUcphdvFDRkN4eNa9 -- Your responses will not be used for anything without additional contact and will help shape the future sound of diary entries. Want to take part?  Reach out at podcastalec [at] gmail [dot] com.
12:21
December 06, 2020
11.2.2020 | New Friends | Cape Town, South Africa
With some inspiration and help from YouTube Filmmaker Dan Mace, I reach out to a South African Musician in a shared Facebook group.  -- How did this episode make you feel? If you have a moment, please fill out this short survey: https://forms.gle/SUcphdvFDRkN4eNa9  -- Your responses will not be used for anything without additional contact and will help shape the future sound of diary entries. Want to take part?  Reach out at podcastalec [at] gmail [dot] com.
13:10
December 03, 2020
10.30.2020 | Circadian | San Jose, CA
7 months into a pandemic, and home is starting to spin. Enable the "Listen Closely" Alexa skill today to stay up to date on the latest log. How did this episode make you feel? If you have a moment, please fill out this short survey: https://forms.gle/SUcphdvFDRkN4eNa9 Your responses will not be used for anything without additional contact and will help shape the future sound of diary entries. Want to take part? Reach out at podcastalec [at] gmail [dot] com.
06:06
October 31, 2020
10.2.2020 | On the Road | Route 66 at Kingman, AZ
What makes a Great American Roadtrip? A look at the life on the road now and back then. Enable the "Listen Closely" Alexa skill today to stay up to date on the latest log. How did this episode make you feel? If you have a moment, please fill out this short survey: https://forms.gle/SUcphdvFDRkN4eNa9 Your responses will not be used for anything without additional contact and will help shape the future sound of diary entries.
16:07
October 08, 2020
8.15.2020 | The Pandemic Mantra | Marin Headlands, CA
"It doesn't matter how so slow you go so long as you do not stop."  Enable the "Listen Closely" Alexa skill today to stay up to date on the latest log. How did this episode make you feel? If you have a moment, please fill out this short survey: https://forms.gle/SUcphdvFDRkN4eNa9 Your responses will not be used for anything without additional contact and will help shape the future sound of diary entries.
09:14
August 23, 2020
8.7.2020 | An Intricate Context of Things
An Intricate Context of Things is my new lo-fi hip-hop album based on the things getting me through quarantine.  Find the full album with instrumental tracks here: https://soundcloud.com/alec-cowan/sets/an-intricate-context-of-things How did this episode make you feel? If you have a moment, please fill out this short survey: https://forms.gle/SUcphdvFDRkN4eNa9 Your responses will not be used for anything without additional contact and will help shape the future sound of diary entries.
29:18
August 07, 2020
6.28-30.2020 | Mountain Sunset | Trinity Alps, CA
Painting legend Bob Ross walks us through a painting come to life: the Trinity Alps in northern California, where hijinks and sore muscles are to be found. How did this episode make you feel? If you have a moment, please fill out this short survey: https://forms.gle/SUcphdvFDRkN4eNa9 Your responses will not be used for anything without additional contact and will help shape the future sound of diary entries.
05:43
July 13, 2020
7.4.2020 | July 4th: Fire | San Jose, CA
Don't buy fireworks, people. How did this episode make you feel? If you have a moment, please fill out this short survey: https://forms.gle/SUcphdvFDRkN4eNa9 Your responses will not be used for anything without additional contact and will help shape the future sound of diary entries.
02:45
July 05, 2020
6.7.2020 | This place called San Jose | San Jose, CA
A trumpet ensemble, drive-in COVID test, and annoying midnight bird walk into a bar.  How did this episode make you feel? If you have a moment, please fill out this short survey: https://forms.gle/SUcphdvFDRkN4eNa9 Your responses will not be used for anything without additional contact and will help shape the future sound of diary entries.
06:42
June 17, 2020
2.24.19 - 5.27.20 | This was Home | Seattle, WA
To be heard is a blessing and some days a miracle. I'm so thankful for my name and voice to have been weaved into the sound of this city, to be played over radios and heard through ears. To Seattle, the Emerald City and my welcome home for the past year. Goodbye. Thank you for listening. How did this episode make you feel? If you have a moment, please fill out this short survey: https://forms.gle/SUcphdvFDRkN4eNa9 Your responses will not be used for anything without additional contact and will help shape the future sound of diary entries.
06:50
June 04, 2020
5.31.20 | Summer '93, on tape | Grand Junction, CO and Mesquite, NV
The summer of '93 was a busy one. Fun times were to be had at the pool and on the golf course.  Videocameras grab everything you see, but today the goal is to grab everything you can hear.  How did this episode make you feel? If you have a moment, please fill out this short survey: https://forms.gle/SUcphdvFDRkN4eNa9 Your responses will not be used for anything without additional contact and will help shape the future sound of diary entries.
06:28
June 03, 2020
5.22.20 | No One But the Wind | Olympic National Park
Over the ferry, through the woods, to foamy shore and crystal lake we go. Recorded in Olympic National Park in Washington. How did this episode make you feel? If you have a moment, please fill out this short survey: https://forms.gle/SUcphdvFDRkN4eNa9 Your responses will not be used for anything without additional contact and will help shape the future sound of diary entries.
05:25
May 24, 2020
12.18.19 | Moments of sound, moments of silence | Maui, HI
In order of appearance:  - Wailuku - The Iao Valley - Kihei - Haleakala National Park - Wailuku How did this episode make you feel? If you have a moment, please fill out this short survey: https://forms.gle/SUcphdvFDRkN4eNa9 Your responses will not be used for anything without additional contact and will help shape the future sound of diary entries.
02:58
May 24, 2020
11.10.19 | The old piano | The Mission, San Francisco
Memories of old saloon times over a cafe coffee and caprese. Just off Mission St. in San Francisco's Mission District. How did this episode make you feel? If you have a moment, please fill out this short survey: https://forms.gle/SUcphdvFDRkN4eNa9 Your responses will not be used for anything without additional contact and will help shape the future sound of diary entries.
03:15
May 24, 2020
11.27.18 | A Vital Organ | Bells of Berlin
This combines two pieces of tape from two very different places in Berlin: the bells of a glass tower next to the Kaiser Wilhelm church in West Berlin, which was never reconstructed after WWII; and an organ from a church by Alexanderplatz, a main plaza in the former Soviet East Berlin. These two sounds mingle, compete, and twist -- they are two sounds of a cohesive but divided Berlin. Nevertheless, they are the musical undercurrent of the city. How did this episode make you feel? If you have a moment, please fill out this short survey: https://forms.gle/SUcphdvFDRkN4eNa9 Your responses will not be used for anything without additional contact and will help shape the future sound of diary entries.
03:57
December 13, 2018
5.18.18 | Voices in the Waves | Cape Coast Castle
Cape Coast Castle was the seat of power for the British slave trade in Ghana. This story is a tour through the stone fortress and an attempt to translate what it means to walk the same steps that masters and slaves did only 400 years ago. How did this episode make you feel? If you have a moment, please fill out this short survey: https://forms.gle/SUcphdvFDRkN4eNa9 Your responses will not be used for anything without additional contact and will help shape the future sound of diary entries.
15:46
September 22, 2018
12.28.17 | Music in the Tunnels | Montreal Metro
Sounds from street performers throughout the Montreal Metro. How did this episode make you feel? If you have a moment, please fill out this short survey: https://forms.gle/SUcphdvFDRkN4eNa9 Your responses will not be used for anything without additional contact and will help shape the future sound of diary entries.
07:30
June 16, 2018