Skip to main content
A Song Called Life

A Song Called Life

By Osi Atikpoh
I bring people with all kinds of backgrounds onto the show to discuss their lives, careers, and everything else in between!
Listen on
Where to listen
Apple Podcasts Logo

Apple Podcasts

Breaker Logo


Google Podcasts Logo

Google Podcasts

Pocket Casts Logo

Pocket Casts

RadioPublic Logo


Spotify Logo


Currently playing episode

Episode #42: Steve Fister

A Song Called Life

Episode #44: ChrystalChyna
In this episode, I had the pleasure of speaking to the very talented duo, ChrystalChyna. Chrystal and Chyna are identical twins and an R&B duo based in Los Angeles, CA. We discussed a wide range of topics including colorism in the entertainment industry, their musical influences, the current state of R&B, and their recent cover of SWV's, "Rain." As always, thanks for listening!
October 7, 2021
Episode #43: Jonathan Rush
Episode #43: I got to catch up with an old friend from back in the college days, Jonathan Rush. We talked at length about our lives, introducing new ideas to the orchestral music experience, and our personal experiences as young black musicians in the classical music community. As always, thanks for listening! Guest bio:  Hailed as "a continually rising talent in the conducting world" by the Baltimore Sun, Jonathan Taylor Rush brings passion, unique interpretation, and a refreshing energy to the orchestral experience. Jonathan was appointed as the Assistant Conductor for the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra in the fall of 2020. Previously, Jonathan served as Music Director of the Buckeye Philharmonic Orchestra, an orchestra on the campus of The Ohio State University. He received a Bachelor of Music Education degree from The Ohio State University, and a Master of Music degree in Orchestral Conducting, from the Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University.
September 29, 2021
Episode #42: Steve Fister
In this episode, I had such an awesome conversation with Rock N Roll legend, Steve Fister. Steve moved from Buffalo, NY to Los Angeles at the age of 17 with one goal in mind: becoming a rockstar. We discuss his journey, life an artist during the pandemic, and many legendary stories from his career. As always, thanks for listening!   Steve Fister, versatile rock guitarist, singer and songwriter, has performed and recorded with many artists such as John Kay & Steppenwolf, Bon Jovi, King Kobra, Quiet Riot, The Pat Travers Band, Joe Satriani, Steve Vai, Michael Des Barres, Stu Hamm, Jack Casady, Tommy Tutone, Walter Trout and Yngwie Malmstein. Steve also served as musical director and guitarist for Lita Ford on her worldwide tours. He is currently featured in the guitar documentary "Blood Frets and Tears". Steve has produced 10 solo records including his “Live Bullets” which reached #2 on the European blues charts. His 2017 release, “The Steve Fister Electro Acoustic Band”, was well received and resulted in the trio touring Europe once again to packed houses. The band performed at the Livehouse in Hollywood for Steve Vai's Jamathon in front of 500,000 online viewers. The trio has played over 300 shows including support tours with Joe Satriani, Walter Trout and Y&T. His compositions have been featured in the Mel Brooks feature film "Spaceballs", and the hit TV show "Supernatural". Steve has song placements on HBO, Starz, ABC, NBC, VH1, MTV, Showtime, The Howard Stern Show and The History Channel. He is also featured in the video game “Rock Band “. Steve's current release, “Let It Slide", is now available along with his 2021 European tour dates at STEVEFISTER.COM
September 23, 2021
Episode #41: Syrus Pajooh
Syrus Pajooh is a licensed optician at Dr. Dayyani Eye Care Optometry located in Santa Monica, CA. This is one of several episodes on the podcast featuring local businesses here in the Los Angeles area.  Story time: Okay so it's not really much of a story, but long story short I needed to get new eye contacts, so I decide to schedule an appointment at Dr. Dayyani Eye Care. The second I walked in I instantly clicked with the opticians, Syrus and Tanaz. I liked their vibe so much and thought it'd be great to feature them on the podcast. And here we are! In this episode, I sit down with Syrus to talk about the challenges one faces when starting a business, Dr. Shahrokh Dayyani's journey from Iran to America and how he got started in the optometry business, and you guessed it - motorcycles. Syrus is one cool dude, and I know you guys are gonna love this episode. As always, thanks for listening! Dr. Dayyani Eye Care Optometry:
September 16, 2021
Episode #40: Seth Cunningham
​ Seth Cunningham is a filmmaker based in Los Angeles, CA. "I love and have experience in every aspect of Filmmaking from pre-production to post. I take pride in my knowledge of each department giving me a unique perspective to know exactly what a production needs to take its best form." Seth is a graduate of Savannah College of Art and Design. In this episode, Seth and I talk about all aspects of film, the similarities between the music and film world, and like every other episode, a bunch of random **** that comes to mind! 
September 14, 2021
Episode #39: Dr. Adam Gussow
As a pioneering blues harmonica player and teacher and award-winning scholar of the blues, Adam Gussow has carved out a singular career.   A professor of English and Southern Studies at the University of Mississippi who specializes in blues literature and culture, Gussow was one of the first amplified blues harp players to make overblows a key element of his stylistic approach, adapting Howard Levy's innovations in the late 1980s in a way that helped usher in a new generation of overblow masters such as Jason Ricci and Chris Michalek. Since 2012, Gussow has been performing, recording, and touring with veteran blues guitarist Alan Gross as the Blues Doctors.  Their first album, Roosters Happy Hour (2014), hit #14 on the Living Blues radio chart.  Their second album, Same Old Blues Again (2018), garnered terrific reviews.  "Gussow’s amplified--and seemingly effortless--harmonica drives much of this collection," wrote Blues Blast, "and it swings hard. Real hard… [A]n up-tempo album of blues standards… and then some, all generously seasoned with Gussow’s masterful, very fluid harmonica playing." Early in 2020, Gussow and Gross joined forced with Roderick Patterson, aka "Sir Rod," an Atlanta-area singer, dancer, and motivational speaker who happens also to be Sterling Magee's nephew, to form an exciting new trio, Sir Rod & The Blues Doctors.  Their debut album, Come Together, an homage to the music of Satan & Adam, has just been released. An award-winning scholar and memoirist, Gussow is the author of five blues-themed books:  Mister Satan's Apprentice:  A Blues Memoir (1998; reissued in 2009); Seems Like Murder Here:  Southern Violence and the Blues Tradition (2002); Journeyman's Road:  Modern Blues Lives From Faulkner's Mississippi to Post-9/11 New York (2007); Busker's Holiday (2015), a novel; and Beyond the Crossroads:  The Devil and the Blues Tradition (2017), which was voted "Best Blues Book of 2017" by the readers of Living Blues.  His new book, Whose Blues? Facing Up to Race and the Future of the Music, was published by University of North Carolina Press in the fall of 2020.
September 2, 2021
Episode #38: Braylen Brooks
If anyone knows about opulent travel destinations and how to market them to the masses, it's travel influencer and esteemed curator, Braylen Brooks. His stunningly curated images, videos and editorial content has enthralled over 69k followers on Instagram, visibility with over 2.5 million in the top travel communities and platforms on Facebook and a TripAdvisor readership at 50k+. His content has also attracted the attention of Architectural Digest, Refinery 29, CBS News and GQ, to name a few. Over the course of his travels, Brooks has built a devoted upscale following that looks to him for the best in hotels, airlines, fine dining and bespoke experiences all around the globe. Brooks' goal is to "Bring experiences to life that won't go unnoticed." Website: Instagram: @rlmtravellux/@braylenbrooks/@therlmagency Linkedin: Twitter: @BraylenBrooks Facebook:
August 31, 2021
Episode #37: Aaron Smith
Aaron Smith is a freelance trumpet player based in Los Angeles, CA. He also writes, arranges, and publishes music through his small business,TrumpetSmith Publishing (ASCAP).  As a freelance artist, Smith performs for live orchestral events, musical theatre, motion pictures, television, big band, and video games which have included ABC, BroadwayHD, Disney+, E3, Fathom Events, the Game Awards, Microsoft, PBS’ Live from Lincoln Center, Riot Games, Spike, Touchstone Pictures, Universal, and Warner Brothers. He has appeared on Dancing with the Stars, Encore!, Ellen, the LATE LATE Show, and the Voice. Ensemble appearances include the Hollywood Studio Symphony, MUSE/IQUE, New West Symphony, the Industry, the OSCARS Governor’s Ball Orchestra, Santa Barbara Chamber Orchestra, Santa Barbara Symphony, San Diego Symphony, Southeast Symphony, Southwest Chamber Music, Tucson Symphony, wasteLAnd, and the John Daversa Progressive Big Band. In the LA theater world, Smith performs regularly at the Hollywood Pantages, Dolby, and La Mirada Theaters. He was invited as a guest solo artist to the International Trumpet Guild in 2006 and again as a member of the Hollywood Epic Brass in 2016.  Smith enjoys outreach work, private teaching, composing and arranging. He holds a Master of Fine Arts degree from the California Institute of the Arts and a Bachelor of Music degree from the Eastman School of Music where he studied with James Thompson. He is also a graduate of the Interlochen Arts Academy. Smith is a part of the Stomvi Artist Family. 
August 30, 2021
Episode #36: KeNosha Whitehead
"God has extraordinarily gifted me to write extraordinarily. Put another way, writing is my superpower—so much that, sometimes, my fingers actually tingle when I type. I like to think the tingles are little surges of creativity. Or, they could merely indicate that my hand is going numb due to an extended writing session. Either way, I am passionately connected to and invested in my craft. I work as a corporate counsel for a religious non-profit corporation, and I hustle as a content writer, professional editor, and writing coach for the brave, imaginative souls who inspire and revolutionize through their pen and keys. And I have a feeling that, if you are here, one of those souls might be you." - KeNosha Whitehead
August 25, 2021
Episode #35: Chef Johnene Joy
Chef Johnene Joy is a talented and highly skilled personal chef with over six years in the culinary industry. Johnene graduated in May 2016 from Nicholls State University with a Bachelors of Science in Culinary Arts. Shortly after graduating, she began her personal chef journey working for A-list celebrity clients. Her first celebrity client she worked along side her colleague, Chef D’Antoine Hills for about a year. In 2017 Chef Johnene was given another personal chef opportunity and decided to move to Los Angeles, CA. Working as a personal chef enabled Johnene to travel the world and cook for other celebrities such as Nicki Minaj, Lauren London, Offset, and Justin Beiber to name a few.
August 18, 2021
Episode #34: Anthony O'Toole
Anthony O’Toole, a self-taught composer, holds a BA in Music Theory and Composition from Indiana University of Pennsylvania and a MM of Composition from George Mason University where he was recognized by the university as a distinguished graduate for his achievements as a composer and musician. His music has been commissioned and performed by musicians and ensembles all around the world. Mr. O’Toole’s music for wind band has been performed and recorded by some of the finest bands including the United States Coast Guard Band, The Kansas State University Wind Ensemble, and ‘The President’s Own’ United States Marine Band.
August 13, 2021
Episode #33: Flyana Boss
Flyana Boss is a fierce duo repping the vagina dynasty. Hailing from Detroit and Dallas these two young women are classically trained musicians who have turned their raw musical genius into a flossy irresistible package that will have you thirsty for more. Their messaging, witty rhymes, gritty production, impeccable timing, confident expression, ownership of their sexuality and keen pulse on the inner consciousness of the millennial, gen-y and gen-z put them in the perfect position to take over your entire timeline and playlist.
August 10, 2021
Episode #32: Karoline Menezes
Karoline Menezes is a violist, educator, entrepreneur, and arts advocate based in Los Angeles, CA. She has performed alongside artists such as Eminem, Mary J. Blige, The Weeknd, Shawn Mendes, Kanye West, Bebe Rexha and Andrea Bocelli. Karoline is also known for her work as a studio musician, having performed in numerous TV and Film scores such as The Lego Movie 2, Prodigal Son, Bumblebee, Crazy Rich Asians, Creed II, Empire, Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD and more. She is also an avid advocate for the arts and works on interdisciplinary initiatives to support career development of youth across the US and Latin America.
August 5, 2021
Episode #31: Isreal McKinney Scott
Isreal McKinney Scott is a New York based actor and producer known for The Hail Mary (2021), Talisman (2020) and My Sister's Wedding. Isreal received his MFA in Acting from The New School for Drama and a BA in Religious Studies from Millsaps College. He has acted on screen and stages across the country with a love and skill for Shakespeare, Devised Theater and Improv. He is all for anything that promotes unity through understanding. His original one man show, Road to America, was received with with rave reviews at Salon Klassick. Some favorite roles include Dave Robinson in the New York Area premiere of LOMBARDI at Harbor Lights Theater and Oliver in As You Like It (South Dakota Shakespeare Festival). When not acting, Isreal holds a  black belt in Taekwondo, is a licensed minister, mentors youth, and loves to travel and learn about cultures around the world with his wife Colleen and daughter Isabel Mariah.
August 3, 2021
Episode #30: Dr. Lauri Scheyer
Dr. Lauri Scheyer is Professor of English and founding Director of the Presidentially Chartered Center for Contemporary Poetry and Poetics at California State University, Los Angeles and Xiaoxiang Scholars Program Distinguished Professor at Hunan Normal University.She was founding Curator of the nation’s only African American Poetry Archive, and founding Director of the UK’s first BA program in Creative Writing. She teaches all genres of creative writing, and is especially interested in global and culturally inclusive approaches to creative writing pedagogy. A widely published author who has received numerous literary awards, her most recent book is A History of African American Poetry (Cambridge University Press, 2019).
July 30, 2021
Episode #29: Daniel Trahey
Daniel Trahey is a musician, educator, innovator, and social entrepreneur. He co-created Baltimore Symphony Orchestra’s “OrchKids” program, and also founded the El Sistema -inspired program “Tuned-In” at the Peabody Institute where he taught  Collective Composition and Community Engagement for ten years. Dan plays Tuba for the Archipelago Project and the Austria based RET Brass Band and has performed world wide for hundreds of thousands of children, specifically targeting impoverished areas with little access to live performance. He has held orchestral positions in Mexico and the U.S.  Dan’s work is documented by media outlets such as 60 Minutes, PBS, NPR, The N.Y. Times, and The Washington Post. Dan has given TED talks in multiple locations and was named the Most Valuable Player in the Arts by Baltimore Magazine. Dan has taught at Baltimore School for the Arts, Idyllwild Arts, Peabody Conservatory, New England Conservatory, and The University of Maryland.
July 27, 2021
Episode #28: Myka Miller
Myka Miller is the former Executive Director of the Harmony Project, a non-profit organization established in April of 2001 with a vision of serving the cultural and artistic needs of underprivileged children in the Los Angeles area. Myka is an accomplished musician and plays oboe, flute, English horn and sings. She resides in Los Angeles, where she regularly plays with local orchestras, rock and salsa bands, experimental groups, and jazz. 
July 20, 2021
Episode #27: Nelson Jackson III
Nelson Jackson is a musician, entrepreneur, and pastor based in Los Angeles, CA. As a keyboardist he has performed with several artists including Ariana Grande, Kenny Lattimore, and Aaron Spears. He also composed the music for several films such as A Question of Faith and The Sin Seer.  
July 15, 2021
Episode #26: Capt. Leonardo Cuadrado
Leonardo Cuadrado, Captain (ret) USMC, serves as New Directions for Veterans’ Interim President & Chief Operating officer. He is a remarkable leader who began his Marine career as an enlisted man. Cuadrado was selected for the Marine Corps Enlisted Commissioning Education Program (MECEP), where he attained the rank of Staff Sergeant before earning his commission as a Second Lieutenant and retired as the School Adjutant, USMC School of Infantry (West). Since leaving the Marines, he has served as Chief Operating Officer for A Place Called Home and most recently as Director of Veteran Programs at Goodwill (Southern California). Los Angeles has the largest population of homeless military veterans in the nation. The LA Homeless Services Authority estimates that more than 4,000 homeless veterans live on our streets. Many of these men and women suffer from Co-Occurring Disorders, including substance use, mental illness and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), as well as chronic medical problems. Since 1992, New Directions for Veterans (NDVets) has provided comprehensive services to thousands of veterans in Los Angeles County. Founded by two formerly homeless Vietnam veterans and a local advocate for homeless persons, NDVets initially operated out of a five-bedroom home serving eight homeless Vietnam War veterans. We now operate 2 Transitional Housing Programs for veterans on the street in need of housing and 6 Permanent Supportive Housing (PSH) facilities in Los Angeles County, along with 6 additional sites that will finish construction by 2020. NDVets offers a wide array of services including substance abuse treatment, counseling, remedial education, job training and placement, as well as parenting and money management classes. Legal and tax assistance are available, as is an active aftercare program and resources for alumni. Veterans leave NDVets with a savings account, housing, a job or other income, computer skills, renewed self-confidence and the support of mentors and peers. Such a transformation takes hard work, motivation and accountability, but the results are life altering—and for many veterans, life-saving.
July 13, 2021
Episode #25: Dr. Claire Delcambre
"I am a doctor of physical therapy,  pelvic health advocate, movement expert, educator, and ally. I help you understand your body and your symptoms and provide you ways to effectively address your symptoms to further provide you with you-centered strategies to move through life with less pain along with better knowledge to empower a life filled with strength, resiliency, mobility, and function. It is so important to love ourselves and our bodies for all the amazing things it does for us. A great way to accomplish this is to understand it. When we know what our body is trying to do for us, we can find ways to work with it rather than against it as an adversary we have to overcome. When we find harmony with our body, we can love and appreciate it for the incredible and perfect vessel it is. It is my joy to share my knowledge with you and to have those important conversations about the things that can be difficult to accept or talk about like our changing bodies, sex, pee, poop, and more at all stages of life. I cannot wait to provide you with ways to feel better so you can confidently move forward - liberated from pain, dysfunction, and fear of injury." - Dr. Claire Delcambre Website: Instagram: @heybabewellness
July 8, 2021
Episode #24: Dr. Jim Self
Jim Self is a Los Angeles-based freelance musician. Since 1974 he has worked for all the major Hollywood studios performing for over 1500 motion pictures and hundreds of television shows and records. His solos in major films include John William’s scores to Jurassic Park, Home Alone and Home Alone 2: Lost in New York, Hook, and was the “Voice of the Mothership” from Close Encounters of the Third Kind. Recent films include Wall-E, Avatar, and Toy Story 3. As a solo artist, Self performs regularly worldwide. His concerts and clinics present an interesting blend of classical and jazz music, and represent a wide spectrum of his many experiences as a performer, composer, and teacher. Self is also a published composer and arranger. He has about 60 titles for brass, string and woodwind chamber music, works for band, orchestra, solo tuba and trombone.
July 6, 2021
Episode #23: Rachel Blaustein, Emma Rocheleau, Jordan Thomas
Poised as a bright and promising young artist, opera singer, Soprano Rachel Blaustein has worked with New York City Opera, Santa Fe Opera (Summer 2021), Lyric Opera of Chicago, Chicago Opera Theater, Des Moines Metro Opera, The Glimmerglass Opera, Kentucky Opera, among others. On the competition front, she has one awards from the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, Partners for the Arts Inc, Tri-Cities Opera and Annapolis Opera. She holds degrees from The Peabody Conservatory and Hofstra University. Emma Rocheleau, soprano, is originally from Lexington, SC. She is a recent graduate of the Peabody Conservatory with Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance. Jordan Thomas is an international award winning harpist who has performed all around the world and has been playing music since the age of 3.  Performing genres from classical music to popular, he has performed with artists such as Yo Yo Ma, Jennifer Hudson, Kirk Franklin just to name a few. Jordan currently resides in Chicago where he performs locally.
July 1, 2021
Episode #22: Sean Patrick Hughes
Sean Patrick Hughes is an author, veteran, non-profit founder ( and a special needs father. He’s contributed to multiple media outlets including the Washington Post, Playboy and other online media outlets. A veteran of Operations Iraqi and Enduring Freedom and a Bronze Star recipient, Sean graduated of the United States Naval Academy and the University of San Diego Graduate School of Business and separated from the Navy at the rank of Commander. He lives in Southern California with his wife Annette and three boys .
June 29, 2021
Episode #21: Natalie Frakes, Dan Trahey, Pete Tashjian
Natalie Frakes graduated from Wayne State University with a Bachelor of Music in Music Education. She studied violin under Dr. Laura Roelofs and music education with Dr. Wendy Matthews. Natalie has served as a string instructor and conductor for many positions including Wayne State’s String Project@Wayne, the Detroit Symphony Orchestra’s Civic Youth Ensembles, Detroit’s Urban Stringz, and the Dearborn Youth Symphony. She was also a teaching artist with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra’s El Sistema-inspired OrchKids program. In addition to teaching, Natalie performs frequently with multiple bands in the Metro Detroit area including NUCLASSICA, Nouveauté, and the Pistons House Band. She continues working the gigging circuit with friends in their group Midtown Strings. Daniel Trahey is a musician, educator, innovator, and social entrepreneur. He co-created Baltimore Symphony Orchestra’s “OrchKids” program, and founded the El Sistema-inspired program “Tuned-In” at the Peabody Institute where he teaches creative composition and community engagement. Dan plays Tuba for the Archipelago Project and the Austria based RET Brass Band and has performed worldwide for hundreds of thousands of children, specifically targeting impoverished areas with little access to live performance. Dan is a consultant for programs desiring to use music as a vehicle for social change. He has helped start El Sistema-inspired programs in places such as Charlotte, Chicago, Ft.Worth, Innsbruck, Allentown, Waterbury, Alexandria, Kalamazoo, and Miami. Over the past decade, he has developed a vehicle for nurturing youth voice called Collective Composition, facilitating large-scale compositions with organizations around the world. Dan holds a M.M. from Yale and a B.M.E from Peabody. Earning a Downbeat Award for his High School jazz combo as well as the Louis Armstrong Award, Pete attended the Chicago College of Performing Arts at Roosevelt University where he studied with 7 time Grammy Award winner Paul Wertico, Ed Harrison (Lyric Opera), as well as Reuben Alvarez (LP). Since graduating in 2010, Pete has been actively involved in El Sistema US and music education for social change.  Working with the Tuned-In Program (Peabody Institute) and ORCHkids (Baltimore Symphony Orchestra) in Baltimore and El Sistema Ravinia and the YOURS Project in Chicago.  He currently leads a bucket band program at SHIFT: Englewood on the southside of Chicago.
June 24, 2021
Episode #20: Dr. La Shawn Denise Witt
As one of the foremost experts in the wedding and special event industry, Dr. La Shawn Denise Witt is one of the top wedding and event planners. La Shawn’s experience includes planning hundreds of weddings and special events around the nation and which she and TEAMDiva executed every detail with style. She focuses on all weddings and events, sophisticated to intimate, from traditional to destination, and cultural to conservative. La Shawn is an event scholar that makes sure all of her events shine and the guests go home wanting more. Dr. Witt is also an award winning educational consultant & trainer, educator, keynote speaker, lecturer, motivational speaker, author and president of Dr. La Shawn Denise Witt. A native of Los Angeles, California, Dr. Witt worked in the field of education for over 18 years as an Principal, Assistant Principal, Middle School Teacher and various Teacher on Special Assignment positions.
June 22, 2021
Episode #19: Desiree Ellen
"I was born and raised in Chicago and the surrounding suburbs and went on to receive a degree in fashion design from the Savannah College of Art and Design. I always push myself to achieve my goals no matter what, which has helped me grow into a reliable and diligent designer. It is my belief that the ultimate fashion designers influence not only the way people dress but also the way people think; this is the kind of designer I aspire to be. My passions and inspirations come from punk rock, feminism, the environment, architecture, and pop culture, and through these inspirations I aspire to be a part of the generation that will challenge and improve this industry from the inside out, because I have faith that fashion can be so much more than what it seems to be at face value." - Desiree Ellen
June 17, 2021
Episode #18: Amit Peled
From the United States to Europe to the Middle East and Asia, Israeli cellist Amit Peled, a musician of profound artistry and charismatic stage presence, is acclaimed as one of the most exciting instrumentalists on the concert stage today. At 6'5" tall, Peled started life as a basketball player and was called "larger than life" when he enveloped his cello and "Jacqueline du Pré in a farmer's body." Mr. Peled has performed as a soloist with many orchestras and in the world’s major concert halls such as: Carnegie Hall and Alice Tully Hall, New York; Salle Gaveau, Paris; Wigmore Hall, London; Konzerthaus, Berlin; and Tel Aviv’s Mann Auditorium. Follow Amit on Facebook and Instagram:
June 16, 2021
Episode #17: Tom Williams
Tom Williams is the owner of Burn Fitness - a community fitness center located in Santa Monica, CA. He is also the founder of Prior to becoming a personal trainer and gym owner, Tom was a world class swimmer, winning gold medals and setting records in the Pan American Games, World University Games and U.S. Open in the 50M freestyle. He swam with the U.S team for 6 years. While competing at a world class level, Tom earned a BA in Business & Communications from The University of Iowa. He also coached the Men's Swim Team at The Ohio State University for two years while pursuing his PhD in Counseling Psychology.  Burn Fitness - Santa Monica
June 8, 2021
Episode #16: Rebecca Zuñiga, Devin Harrington, Winston Harris
Rebecca Zúñiga, a graduate of the Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University, is a Baltimore-based Opera Singer, Pianist and Activist that believes in the liberation of all marginalized communities. As a queer immigrant of color, Rebecca envisions a future that is free of all oppressive systems that continue to harm us, and dreams of a world that is free of colonialist ideologies, imperialism and capitalism, and invites other to reject the perpetuation of white supremacy in the music field. Winnie is possibly (though not likely) from people and is based slightly outside of the monadic plane. Winnie is currently discussing the pros and cons of letting the LOC method go with Kyle and the others. Winnie - get into it, live your best. Devin Harrington is a passionate singer, artist and music educator residing in Baltimore, MD. Devin, a graduate of Virginia State, is known for his thrilling vocals and sultry stylings, and he dedicates his days to shaping the future minds of tomorrow. Devin is currently working on a solo project that he hopes to release in the winter season.
May 27, 2021
Episode #15: Dr. Jay Lund
Dr. Jay Lund is Director of the Center for Watershed Sciences and and Distinguished Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of California – Davis. He has long enjoyed teaching, research, and engagement on many aspects of theory and practice for water management and policy, usually trying to integrating economics and operations research with traditional engineering. He has become particularly engaged in working on the wide range of water problems in California with many collaborators, and remains enthusiastic about the potential of system analysis and optimization to provide understanding and insights for management and policy.
May 25, 2021
Episode #14: Aubrey Foard
Aubrey Foard is the principal tubist of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, a position he has held since 2018. He also serves as lecturer of Tuba and Euphonium at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) and as Artist Faculty at the Brevard Music Center. He has performed as a guest musician with several other orchestras, including the Los Angeles Philharmonic, The Cleveland Orchestra, the Utah Symphony, the Houston Symphony, the North Carolina Symphony, the Minnesota Orchestra, and the Louisville Orchestra.
May 22, 2021
Episode #13: Lisa Kellogg Lisa Kellogg is famed as a choreographer, dancer, and dance teacher. She is also the owner of 'Santa Monica Hip Hop Dance' studio. Her charismatic style, consisting of hip hop, pop, jazz and street dance has fascinated audiences in America, Europe and Japan for years.  She has worked with recording artists such as: Michael Jackson, Bobby Brown and Janet Jackson. Lisa has also worked with companies such as McDonald’s, Pepsi, and Adidas.
May 18, 2021
Episode #12: Xavier Banister
Xavier Banister is the owner of 'Cuttin Up' barbershop in Santa Monica, CA. Mr. Banister was born and raised in Flint, Michigan. The first time he visited California and felt that warm sunshine, he decided to stay and never looked back. Years later, Xavier has now made himself and the barbershop an essential part of the community. He joined the show to share the journey that led to his success. 'Cuttin Up' - 1802 Broadway, Santa Monica, CA 90404
May 12, 2021
Episode #11: Erin Baker, Teng Chen, Kayin Scanterbury
Erin Baker is a professional harpist and music educator. Erin earned her BM and Performer’s Certificate from SUNY Fredonia Degree in Harp Performance from the Peabody Institute and since has continued working as a freelance harpist in the Baltimore/DC area.  Teng Chen is a New York City based audio engineer and music editor with a decade of experience in music production in a variety of musical genres. Now a pre-record music editor and mixer at NBC’s Saturday Night Live, Teng began her studies at the Peabody Institute of The Johns Hopkins University, and graduated with a duo BM degree in Piano Performance / Recording Arts and Sciences, as well as a MA degree in Acoustical Studies within 5 years. Kayin Scanterbury is a professional drummer and day trader. He earned his BM in Jazz Percussion from the Peabody Institute and since has continued working as a freelance drummer in the East Coast region.
May 12, 2021
Episode #10: Dr. Hollis Robbins
In this episode, I was able to catch up with one of my favorite professors from back in the day, Dr. Hollis Robbins. We talked about her life, challenges she faced throughout her career, politics, and her book, 'Forms of Contention: Influence and the African American Sonnet Tradition.' Dr. Hollis Robbins is Dean of the School of Arts & Humanities at Sonoma State University. Dean Robbins is a noted scholar of nineteenth-century American and African American literature, film, and poetry. Her newest book, Forms of Contention: Influence and the African American Sonnet Tradition (University of Georgia Press, 2020), explores the interrelationship of influence, double consciousness, canon-formation, and poetic form. Dean Robbins has previously edited or co-edited five books, including the Penguin Portable Nineteenth Century African American Women Writers, co-edited with Henry Louis Gates, Jr., which was named one of NPR’s Best Books of 2017. Dean Robbins holds a Ph.D. in English from Princeton University (2003); an M.A. in English from the University of Colorado, Boulder (1998); an M.P.P. from Harvard University (1990); and a B.A. from Johns Hopkins University (1983). 
May 5, 2021
Episode #9: Parthenon Huxley
Parthenon Huxley is an American musician, singer, songwriter and producer who is known for his solo albums and for his involvement in ELO Part II and The Orchestra, both of which are latter-day offshoots of the 1970s-80s symphonic rock band Electric Light Orchestra. He has also made cameo appearances in several films including Dragon: The Bruce Lee Story and The Flintstones. Hux made his mark as a producer and collaborator in 1993 with Mark Everett of eels, when Everett was a solo artist known as E. The first collaboration ("Hello Cruel World") became a Top Ten Alternative hit.  Hux scored again when he produced and wrote with Kyle Vincent. Their song "Wake Me Up (When The World's Worth Waking Up For)" hit number one in several markets and set a record for "bubbling under" the Billboard Hot 100 longer than any song in history (not that that was the plan…). Hux has also collaborated with Foreigner hit maker Mick Jones, McCartney guitarist Rusty Anderson, Mick Jagger guitarist Stevie Salas, Canadian chanteuse Sass Jordan, Canadian Idol winner Kalan Porter, Go-Go's drummer Gina Schock, Chicago Transit Authority's Robert Lamm and many more.
May 5, 2021
Episode #8: Shurmi Dhar, Jacob Han, Ethan Lucas
Shurmi, Jacob, and Ethan are all young musicians living in New Yawk, New Yawk. I checked in with my old friends to see what they're up to, what living in the Big Apple this past year has been like, and what they're looking forward to as the city begins to open back up. 
May 4, 2021
Episode #7: Slauson Malone
Jasper Marsalis, better known by his stage name Slauson Malone, is an American jazz, hip hop, and ambient producer hailing from New York City and based in Los Angeles, CA. He is also a former member of Standing on the Corner, an underground experimental jazz and hip hop group based in Brooklyn.
April 30, 2021
Episode #6: Napoleon Gladney
Napoleon W. Gladney has a diverse performance and arts management background which spans seasons and international tours with dance companies including Odyssey Dance Theatre, The Dance Cartel and Backhausdance. National Broadway Tour credits include Wicked The Musical, most recently as Dance Captain/Swing/Chistery Understudy. As an arts administrator, Napoleon has stage managed the mobile opera Hopscotch by Los Angeles’ The Industry and created positions for non-profits at the Theater at the 14th Street Y and LABA: A Laboratory for Jewish Culture in New York City, MUSE/IQUE in Los Angeles, and Greenway Court Theater in Los Angeles. He is currently the Audience Development Coordinator for the Musco Center for the Arts.
April 25, 2021
Episode #5: Michael Mollo, Nick Bentz
Michael Mollo and Nick Bentz joined the show to talk about music, film composing, and life as a composer.  Michael Mollo is a musical native of the Pennsylvania mountains. As composer and songwriter in Santa Monica, California, his music can be heard in a number of film, television and game scores. Michael also oversees global operations for Velvet Green Music. ​ Nick Bentz (b. 1994, Charleston, SC) is a composer and violinist whose art is drawn to the remote fringes and recesses of human experience. In his work he seeks to render intimately personal spaces imbued with an individual sense of storytelling and narrative. Finding inspiration in historical materials, Nick's work explores the destructive relationship between sound artifacts and time.
April 24, 2021
Episode #4: Roderick Demmings, Alan Rosenthal
0:00-0:54 - Intro 0:55-7:57 - Introducing George Floyd and the Derek Chauvin Trial 7:58-18:29 - Introducing Roderick Demmings. Jessica, Alan, Kayin tell their reaction to death of George Floyd in 2020 18:30-32:14 - Where the trial is at the moment, what we’ve learned so far, Day 1 and 2 of the trial 32:15-48:34 - George Floyd’s drug use and its relevance to the case, discussing the defense’s argument, EMT Genevieve Hansen 48:35-1:33:41 - Roderick’s thoughts on Day 2 of the trial, his experience in Minneapolis, media’s impact on court cases, media creating an environment that discourages conversation, autonomous zones in the US 1:33:42-1:59:51 - Roderick’s response to Alan, race relations in the US, lack of wealth in black communities and wealth inequality 1:59:52-2:10:10 - What we all hope to see as the case continues to unfold 2:10:11-2:10:37 - Outro, part II coming soon
April 20, 2021
Episode #3: Jerry Iweh
0:00-0:39 - Intro 0:40-4:33 - How Osi and Jerry know each other  4:34-9:27 - Jerry shares how football came into his life and what it means to him, Osi talks about his journey with music and the similarities to Jerry’s come up   9:28-12:32 - Athleticism and the importance of working on your Mental IQ for the game   12:33-32:44 - Jerry gaining size and switching to LB, how to know what position is best for you to play, cutting out the noise from people that “know what’s best for you”, and the mental changes that come with changing positions in music and football, teamwork beating talent   32:45-56:30 - Chiefs’ getting unlucky right before Super Bowl LV, Jerry discussing how he handles stress or issues that happen off the field and stays sharp on the field, the mentality required for the Patriots to come back from a 28-3 score at half time, analyzing tape after the game   56:3-1:15:00 - Leadership qualities required for a linebacker, staying in shape as a free agent, keeping a regimen during the pandemic   1:15:00-1:36:59 - Jerry discusses his fashion and media company ‘Gtybrand’ and his community based program ‘His Boldness’, focusing on making positive changes in the community   1:37:00-1:37:28 - Outro
April 17, 2021
Episode #2: Azul, Brandon Woody, Randi Withani
0:00-0:54 - The 'We Still Don't Have a Theme Song' theme song, introducing Episode #2 0:55-34:30 - Introduce everyone, talk about our backgrounds and family 34:31-1:25:00 - Randi, Azul, and Brandon discuss the experiences that made them the artists they are today and their experiences as artists in higher education Breaking down the music 1:25:40-1:35:48 - Breaking down Randi's 'Gasoline Dreamz' 1:35:49-1:52:44 - Breaking down Azul's 'Magic' and 'Sleeps' 1:52:45-2:10:38 - Breaking down Brandon's 'Take Care' 2:10:39-2:17:59 - Azul inspires Osi to embrace the process, closing remarks
April 13, 2021
Episode #1: Osi Atikpoh, Ben Hoyt, Kayin Scanterbury, Winston Harris, Jessica Korotkin, Nick Bentz, Marie Herrington
0:00-0:45 - Intro music (#1 song in the country) 0:46-37:09 - Introduce everyone, what went down in 2020, 2020 albums and movies 37:10-1:28:21 - Mental health during the pandemic, figuring things out as a young artists, lessons we learned 1:28:22-1:36:23 - Hamilton, Drake and Josh, Parasite 1:36:24-2:04:22 - Riots, protests, Capital insurrection on Jan. 6th 2:04:23-2:21:44 - RIP Kobe, other celebrity deaths, Inauguration 2:21:45-2:42:18 - Listening to Brandon, Randi, and Azul's music  2:42:19 - Outro music (longest charting single in billboard history)
April 3, 2021