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The Creationists

Author: Steve Waxman

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The Creationists is a podcast about people who create. Each episode will feature an interview with a different creator talking about their process and the road they travelled to achieve their goals.
27 Episodes
This is the final episode of Season Three of The Creationists and since this season featured a series of music related interviews, I thought it only appropriate to include an interview with Christian Swain who, along with his longtime friend Richard Evans created The Rock and Roll Archeology Project, a podcast that is an in-depth look at rock and roll as well as the culture and technology that influenced it from 1945 to 1995. My conversation with Christian touches a bunch of different areas including the influence of black music on rock and roll, the creation of Pantheon, his podcast network of almost 70 music related shows as well as his views on the use of pre-recorded music in podcasts. But everything Christian and his partners have created starts with the first episode of The Rock and Roll Archeology Project which launched in 2015.If you have even the slightest interest in the history of music, culture and technology and how they collided in the 20th century, I can't recommend the Rock and Roll Archaeology podcast enough but do yourself a favour and start at episode one. You can find this and all of the other Pantheon shows wherever you listen to podcasts or at the full transcript at imstevewaxman.comPlease follow The Creationists podcast on Facebook and Instagram.  You can reach out to us at TheCreationistspodcast@gmail.comThe Creationists is mastered in post production by Paul Farrant.
I’ve been a music fan for most of my life but I didn’t really get into rock music until the mid seventies and the seventies were a great time to be a rock fan.  You not only had your favourite bands but you also had your favourite magazine and there were so many to choose from. There was Circus and Creem and Hit Parader and Rock Scene and Rolling Stone, of course. And, if you were a little more intellectual, you might read Crawdaddy or find an article in Mother Jones or even spend a little extra money on something from the UK like the NME. And, as you read each article, you got to know and become a fan of writers like Sylvie Simmons, David Fricke, Lisa Robinson and, of course, the late, great Lester Bangs.  These were the names of the people that turned us onto the music that became indelible in our lives.Add to that list the name Ira Robbins who, in 1974, along with friends Dave Schulps and Karen Rose created Trouser Press as a fanzine that they sold by hand outside of concerts in New York City.  Trouser Press eventually found its way onto magazine racks and, finally, in 1978 into my hands when I saw Rick Nielsen of Cheap Trick on the cover. What I found fascinating about Trouser Press was that reading the magazine always felt like the kinds of conversations me and my friends had on the weekends as we played our new favourite records for one another.All 96 of the original issues of Trouser Press are available to reach online at The site has a great search function so that you can actually follow the life of your favourite band as well as the birth of punk, new wave and underground music. It’s as if you were there. In addition to continuing  his life as a music journalist, Ira has written album notes for a number of artists as well as two novels.  His latest book, Marc Bolan Killed In Crash is the subject of Part two of our interview.Read the full interview transcript at imstevewaxman.comFollow The Creationists podcast on Facebook and Instagram.Contact us at thecreationistspodcast@gmail.comThe Creationists is mastered in post production by Paul Farrant
In part two of my interview with Ira Robbins, we talk about the creation of his latest book, Marc Bolan Killed In Crash.Good fiction is like an abstract painting. The story is born out of the imagination of the writer, and I'm always curious about the inspiration behind that story. Marc Bolan Killed In Crash is the coming of age story of teenager Laila Russell, and her discovery of rock and roll, as well as your introduction into London's glam rock scene. So to satisfy my curiosity about the story's origin. I asked Ira about the book's inspiration.Marc Bolan Killed In Crash is available now and can be ordered through Amazon. It's been called a shrewd and witty novel about the business of pop and lauded for period perfect jargon and keen details about the way the music business manipulates fantasy and reality. Whether you're a fan of glam rock or not, you'll find this book endlessly entertaining. Read full interview transcript at imstevewaxman.comFollow The Creationists podcast on Facebook and Instagram. Subscribe on your favourite podcast platform.Contact The Creationists at thecreationistspodcast@gmail.comThe Creationists is mastered in post-production by Paul Farrant.
Honey Jam began its life as a concert to celebrate the launch of a magazine issue. Now, 25 years later, Honey Jam provides opportunities for female artists to get invaluable access to mentors and performance coaches, as well as the chance to showcase their talents for industry insiders. In the beginning, though, there was no way that Ebonnie Rowe could have dreamed that Honey Jam would still be around a quarter of a century later.Long before starting Honey Jam, Ebonnie was studying at the University of Toronto when a tragic event led her to reassessing her life, which then put her on a path to help affect others in a positive way.If you'd like to find out more about Honey Jam and its history, please visit If you or someone you know would like to get involved in the good work that Ebonnie does, please email her at Read the full transcript at imstevewaxman.comPlease follow The Creationists podcast on Facebook and Instagram and rate and review us on your favourite podcast platform.The Creationists is mastered in post production by Paul Farrant.
Wide Mouth Mason singer and guitarist Shaun Verreault has long been recognized as one of Canada’s finest blues rock guitarists. His long spidery fingers allow him to play incredible fiery riffs with casual ease.  The exploration of the guitar’s possibilities has been his lifelong pursuit but even his closest friends weren’t prepared for Shaun putting aside everything he knew about playing guitar and covering his fingers with metal tubes.Hailing from Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Wide Mouth Mason was born in 1995 with Shaun being joined by friends Safwan Javed on drums and Earl Pereira on bass. Within two years the band had a gold-certified major label debut, played the Montreux Jazz Festival and were touring the world with the likes of AC/DC, ZZ Top and the Rolling Stones. Around the time of the band’s second album, Shaun began to incorporate bottleneck slide guitar into his sound and eventually fell down a creative rabbit hole that has led to the tri-slide guitar he can be seen playing on Facebook and Instagram and featured on the groups latest album, I Wanna Go With You. So, naturally the place to start is with the most obvious question “Shaun, how did you end up with three slides on your fingers?”I highly encourage you to check out all of Wide Mouth Mason’s music including their latest album, I Wanna Go With You, on any music service you have access to.  If you want to find out more about the band, please visit  You can follow Shaun on Facebook or at sv_trislide on Instagram and watch some incredible tri-slide guitar playing. And finally, you can watch the entire jam session with Shaun and Robert Randolph HERE. Read the full transcript at imstevewaxman.comFollow The Creationists podcast on Facebook and Instagram and rate and review us on your favourite podcast platform.The Creationists is mastered in post production by Paul Farrant
When Steve Jordan first introduced the concept of the Polaris Prize to the Canadian music industry, the idea was generally welcomed, though the artistic community was still a little sceptical going into the first show in 2006. Despite the scepticism, the Polaris Music Prize has flourished into and internationally recognized award.Steve Jordan is what they call a music man.  He started his career working at a Top 40 radio station in Kingston Ontario before moving to Toronto to multitask at the independent label Kinetic Records doing radio promotion, publicity and A&R and then taking his A&R shingle to Warner Music and then True North Records.  Steve is now the senior director of CBC music.  In the early 2000s though, Steve had an idea for a different way to shine a light on the Canadian music scene.In early 2020, it was announced that Steve Jordan was stepping down from the Polaris Prize to become the Senior Director of CBC Music. The position of Executive Director of the Polaris Prize is now being held by Claire Degenais. You can find out more information about the Polaris Prize at On the site you will find information about past winners as well as short and long list nominees. In addition to shining a light on new recordings, Polaris has instituted the Heritage Prize sponsored by The Slaight Family to honour albums released prior to 2006 - a sort of hall of fame, if you will.Read the full transcript at imstevewaxman.comThe Creationists is mastered in post production by Paul Farrant.Follow The Creationists podcast on Facebook and Instagram. Please rate and review The Creationists on your favourite podcast platform.  You can reach us at
When Shauna de Cartier wanted to start Six Shooter Records, she found that it was going to be difficult to secure funding from outside sources. She didn’t have the track record to secure government grants and banks weren’t interested in lending her the money. And, when she approached the major labels, she found very little interest there too. So she had to find another way to get her artists in the studio and her label off the ground.When I first contacted Shauna, my plan was to do a story about creating a record label but by the time we were finished talking, I realized that she had so much more to share. Whether it was figuring out how to be a manager, run a record label or mount a music festival, Shauna de Cartier never let obstacles get in her way. Six Shooter is now celebrating its 20th anniversary and they’ve become one of Canada’s most successful independent labels and Shauna has become a vocal advocate for women in the music industry. 2020 was a difficult year for most businesses for sure and Six Shooter was no different.  Shauna admitted to me that after years on her management division and artist touring keeping the label afloat it was the label and its releases that helped keep Six Shooter going this year. In its 20 year history Six Shooter has built a critically acclaimed roster and you can check out all of their artists and releases at sixshooter.comRead the full transcript at imstevewaxman.comFollow The Creationists podcast on Facebook and Instagram.The Creationists is mastered by Paul Farrant.
In 2002 Darryl Hurs created Indie Week Canada, which has since become an annual event held each Fall in Toronto filled with music showcases by and a conference for independent artists. In the years since its inception Darryl has also helped mount similar events internationally. When Indie Week was first established though, Darryl needed to be able to articulate to sponsors what set his event apart from other similar conferences.My interview with Darryl took place while this year's conference was still in the planning phase. By almost any measure, the event was a huge success.  The final count had over 1000 participants from 40 countries who were able to network and attend seminars featuring a wide range of industry experts and special guests. 2020 was a year like no other and every industry has had to adapt to new ways of doing business. Given social distancing, artist showcases were probably not going to happen but Darryl felt that it was important to the artistic community to at least find a way to mount the indie week conference.Read the full transcript at imstevewaxman.comIf you’re interested in finding out more about Indie Week, the festival, the conference or their weekly online sessions go to indieweek.comPlease follow The Creationists podcast on Facebook and Instagram and, if you are so inclined, please leave us a nice little comment on your favourite podcast platform.We'd love to hear from you at thecreationistspodcast@gmail.comThe Creationists is mastered in post production by Paul FarrantThe Creationists and its theme music are created by Steve Waxman
Over the past 40 years, Ron Mann has produced and directed a dozen films focused on Canadian and American culture. His wide ranging subjects include comic books, jazz, beat poets, the war on marijuana, environmental activism and film director Robert Altman.  In 2018 he turned the camera lens on Carmine Street Guitars, Rick Kelly’s cramped music shop  in Greenwich Village. The result is a critically acclaimed film that documents a week in the life of the store and the characters that walk in and out the front door including long time customers and some brand new strangers. Rick Kelly has been building and selling guitars out of his current location on Carmine Street since 1990.  What makes Rick and Carmine Street Guitars so compelling is Rick’s search throughout New York City for reclaimed wood from the Big Apple’s historical buildings which he then turns into custom instruments. The film doesn’t smash you over the head with a lot of action but is, instead, sort of like a sweet lullaby.  As a film buff I was curious as to how Ron approaches the task of making a documentary and as a guitar nerd I wanted to ask him about how he came to discover Carmine Street Guitars. In addition to directing films through his own Sphinx Productions, Ron Mann also puts the focus on otherwise ignored work though his distribution company Films We Like. You can check out all of their titles, including Carmine Street Guitars by logging in to the full interview at imstevewaxman.comPlease follow The Creationists podcast on Facebook and InstagramThe Creationists is mastered in post production by Paul Farrant.
Prince fans will instantly recognize the name Susan Rogers.  She is the stalwart engineer that worked beside Prince during the commercial peak of his career from Purple Rain through to Sign O’ The Times. By the time Susan had come to work with Prince he was already being referred to as a musical wunderkind thanks to five critically acclaimed albums including 1999, which had just become his first record to enjoy total and complete crossover from R&B to Pop, peaking at number 9 on the Billboard Top 200. The first project she worked on was his commercial blockbuster, Purple Rain. But, despite critical acclaim, chart topping albums and universal admiration from his musical peers, Prince had not yet felt that he had made a statement album. That all changed in 1987 with the release of Sign O’ The Times.Read the full interview at imstevewaxman.comThe expanded box set of Sign O’ The Times is available now and is well worth the journey for anyone interested in great music, whether or not you’ve been a Prince fan your whole life.  In addition to the studio gems Susan talks about in this episode, there is a live recording of the Sign O’ The Times tour in Utrecht in the Netherlands which captures the incredible power of Prince live in concert.Please follow The Creationists podcast on Facebook and InstagramThe Creationists is mastered in post production by Paul Farrant.
Pretty much anyone who’s ever had a conversation with me about my favourite bands knows that my Mount Rushmore of seventies rock are KISS, Aerosmith, Cheap Trick and Starz. So imagine my surprise when I discovered a new book called They Just Seem A Little Weird that discusses the influence these four bands have had on rock and roll. I mean KISS, Aerosmith and Cheap Trick, okay, but I didn’t think that anyone who wrote about seventies rock would have included Starz. I don’t know about you, but I love reading books about music, it’s influence on popular culture and the bands that changed our lives.  As a former editor of Spin Magazine, I would have thought that Doug Brod would be an unlikely candidate to write a book arguing on behalf of bands like these.  Of course I soon found out how wrong I was to make that presumption. ***Steve Waxman:  How did this whole idea of writing about these four bands begin for you? Doug Brod: I've always been a fan of KISS, Cheap Trick and Aerosmith and I came kind of late to the party with Starz. I didn't really get to know too much about them until they did a bunch of reunion shows in the early 2000s, in New Jersey and in Manhattan and that's when I started getting into them. But I was always thinking of a book idea. I wanted to write a book, I wanted to write a music book. And it dawned on me that members of all four of the bands played on Gene Simmons' 1978 solo album. You had Joe Perry guesting on guitar, you had Rick Nielsen on guitar, and Richie Ranno from Starz also played guitar on the album. And I thought that that would be a really cool, jumping off point to sort of investigate how these four bands interacted. How they converged. What they shared during the 70s and beyond. For the full interview go to: imstevewaxman.comThey Just Seem A Little Weird is beautifully written and a vivid look behind the curtain of seventies hard rock the book is available now and you can order your own copy through Amazon. I’d also like to take this opportunity to say that if you’ve never heard Starz, their albums are available on your favourite streaming service. I highly recommend their self titled debut and their second album, Violation. You won’t be disappointed. Oh, and about that title, if you didn’t already recognize it, it’s a lyric from Cheap Tricks hit single “Surrender.”Please follow The Creationists podcast on Facebook and InstagramThe Creationists is mastered in post production by Paul Farrant.
Rush's Geddy Lee called Gordon Lightfoot a timeless songwriter. Robbie Robertson of The band calls Gordon Canada’s national treasure. His longtime friend, Bob Dylan, inducted Lightfoot into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame calling him one of his favourite songwriters and has often been quoted saying that when he hears a Gordon Lightfoot song, he wishes it would go on forever.Early Morning Rain, The Canadian Railroad Trilogy, Carefree Highway, Sundown, If You Could Read My Mind, The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald.  The list goes on and on and on.  Gordon Lightfoot is Canada's greatest songwriter. Period. His professional career began over 6o years ago and he's influenced countless popular artists over the years and he’s still at it.  In 2020 he released Solo, his twenty-first album and he’s hoping to get back out on tour as soon as the COVID pandemic is taken care of. I reached Gordon over the phone to see if I could get some insight into his songwriting process and given how long he’s been at it, I thought that the most obvious first question was "Is songwriting still fun for you?"Gordon Lightfoot: Yeah, you know, it’s fun if you see that it's going somewhere that you like.  Then you think about ‘how would this go over in a crowd.’ And so, you think about that for a while and if it seems like it might have a chance that it might bite, you go ahead and finish it.  And some of it you don’t finish. But you’ve got to at least know that they’re going to like it.  That they’re going to be able to make sense out of it. And even then you’ll only use one or two songs off an album. You get the best ones.  The ones that have the best forward momentum. Steve Waxman: How do you determine that?For the full transcript go to: imstevewaxman.comIf you want to find out more about the life of Gordon Lightfoot, I highly recommend Nicholas Jennings excellent biography simply called Lightfoot.  There is also a great documentary film called Gordon Lightfoot: If You Could Read My Mind. For updated news and tour information, check out gordonlightfoot.comPlease follow The Creationists podcast on Facebook and Instagram.The Creationists is mastered in post-production by Paul Farrant.
Some of the artwork discussed in this episode can be seen on The Creationists Podcast on Facebook and Instagram.  Hugh Syme is easily Canada’s most successful and recognizable album cover designer.  If, for some reason, you don’t know the name, you will definitely know the work he’s created for some of the world’s biggest artists including The Band, Def Leppard, Bon Jovi, Earth, Wind and Fire and Celine Dion, to name just a few.Over the course of a career that has now spanned 45 years, Hugh has been nominated for 19 JUNO Awards (winning 4) and much of his work has been featured in volumes of coffee table books that highlight many of the world’s best album covers. But, it’s his relationship with Canadian rockers Rush that solidified Hugh’s reputation.  He has designed every Rush album cover since 1975’s Caress of Steel.  Hugh and I spent some time going over many of his career highlights and we began at the beginning…***Steve Waxman: How did your relationship with Rush begin?Hugh Syme: I was in a band on the same label and with the same management as Rush and Max Webster and the Larry Gowan project was on at the same time, I think. And, I was doing covers for Max and Ian Thomas, my band, and I was called into the principal's office.  Ray Daniels was the manager and he called me in and asked me if I’d like to do a Rush cover.  And I remember distinctly thinking ‘Well, they’re not Genesis or King Crimson or anything but, yeah, why not. I’ll give them a shot,’ not realizing that 42 years later Neil Peart would coin the phrase “serving a life sentence” which became the subtitle of my eventual book called The Art of Rush. It was some kind of unwitting commitment that turned into a beautiful friendship and musical friendship, artistic collaboration and a lengthy, loyal alliance. Steve Waxman: Well, let’s talk about that.  It started with Caress of Steel. What is the collaboration process like and was it a collaboration from the very beginning?  To see full transcript, visit imstevewaxman.comI highly recommend that you take the time to visit to see the wide range of artist styles on display including album covers, original paintings, graphics and drawings.
Photos and video of the project discussed in this episode can be found at The Creationists podcast on Facebook and Instagram.When Canadian-born-San Francisco-based Gisela Schmoll shifted career paths from industrial design to architecture she knew that there would be challenges but she never anticipated that finding a contractor to bring her unique designs to life would be one of them.Do you remember the Palm Pilot? That often copied piece of tech was designed at Gisela’s drafting table. After several years as a junior designer she shifted lanes and started studying architecture and has been building a strong portfolio and reputation ever since.  For the past few years she’s been working with home owner Ed Stellar to design an L-shaped home that incorporates the landscape of his property in the California Hills.***Steve Waxman: Alright,  I want to start with talking about the Stellar house by asking what was the brief that you got from the client to start this whole process?Gisela Schmoll: Basically, I got a list of spaces that he wanted. And then we also discussed the relationships of all the spaces to each other and how he planned to use the house. This client was pretty green. He didn't really understand architecture at all. So I had to, I had to kind of tease things out of him.You know, the things that were most important to him. One of the other things he talked about is capitalizing on the view, cause it's perched up on a little hill and it has a fantastic view. So he wanted views from every single room in the house. And he also wanted to be able to go outside from every single room of this house.But essentially that was the brief.Read the entire transcript at
One of the things I wanted to explore in this series of interviews was how to create a TEDx Talk.  Coincidently, one day I got an email pitch from Greg Hemmings, a filmmaker in Saint John New Brunswick. As I researched Greg I discovered that not only does he weave social consciousness into his work but he’s also created not one, but three TEDx Talks.***Greg Hemmings: It’s interesting because I never thought that I would become a public speaker.  You know, that’s just not something you grow up thinking that you’re going to do. But, as I was growing my business, Hemmings House PIctures, we started producing a lot of interesting documentaries that had a lot of social impact baked in to them. And, when you’re doing filmmaking that has some kind of impact on the community there’s a good chance that the community is going to pay attention and the media might cover you in a little different light. And I started to see a trend of the more interesting things we put out that had a positive impact on the community, the more attention we were given. It turned into one of those things where universities and community colleges would call me and ask me to speak to the classes about storytelling. And that gave me a good bit of confidence about, well, I see all of these other entrepreneurs doing TED Talks and sharing stages at large conferences and as long as I’m speaking about something I know and am passionate about I have no fear of getting on stage. As you know, I’m a musician and have spent many hours on stage playing music in front of people so there’s no issue there. But, after a couple of years of saying “yes” to whatever came my way, I started putting my eyes on the TEDx scene because I’m a huge fan of TED. And you realize that TEDx is a theater into the large TED Conference and most local communities have a TEDx experience.  So, when the University of New Brunswick had a TEDx I immediately jumped up and said ‘Hey, if you guys are ever looking for speakers I’d love to participate.  And they asked me to come do a little bit of a try-out and right after that they said ‘Yes, let’s do it.’ Since then I’ve done three TEDx’s as well as all of the public speaking I’ve had the privilege of doing at conferences and workshops.Steve Waxman: So, you didn’t have to do any pitching initially? To see the transcript of the full interview go to: imstevewaxman.comIf you’d like to find out more about Greg Hemmings and the work they do at his production company Hemmings House, go to hemmingshouse.comTo see more materials related to each episode of The Creationists, follow @thecreationistspodcast on Instagram or "Like" The Creationists podcast on Facebook. Let us know who you’d like to be featured on future episodes of The Creationists: 
Photos and other content related to this episode can be seen on The Creationists podcast on Facebook and Instagram.Are you one of those people who have fantasized about changing the course of your life? Of taking control and spending each day doing the one thing that you love the most? If so, then this is the episode for you. Pauline Loctin was a computer programmer in Montreal building and maintaining websites for musicians when she decided to learn the art of paper folding. And now, as Miss Cloudy, Pauline’s work can be found in art galleries and as installations in hotels and shopping malls.When I say folded paper, you probably think origami. But Pauline’s art is much different from the folded paper animals we might normally associate with origami. So, naturally I started by asking “what’s the difference?Pauline Loctin: First, I will say that there is no difference because what I do is origami but people think that origami is something that is very precise like animals.  Most of the time when I say I do origami, people don’t understand that it can be that but origami is a very large artform and there are a lot of different kinds of origami. It’s not just the animals.  You can do so much different stuff with folding paper.  It’s a large practice in Japan.  What I do is tessellation.  You learn how to repeat a pattern.  So the pattern is folding paper.  So it’s a technique of repetition out of paper.Steve Waxman:  How did you learn this?Pauline Loctin: I read and book and then after that, I just practiced.  So, I really taught myself how to do it. It was a lot of trying and failing and trying and failing.  So, it was all about that.Steve Waxman: When did this start?Pauline Loctin: It’s going to be 6 years next week. It all began six years ago just because I was tired of my job. I was a freelance web strategist. I was on my computer all day and I was just tired of it. So, because I’m a really creative person, I was just creating stuff at home and at some point it begins to grow. People just started to ask me to do stuff for them. At first it was only friends and after that, it was bigger and bigger.For the full transcript visit imstevewaxman.comIf you’d like to find out more about Pauline and her artwork, please head over to 
When I first reached out to Toronto based artist Alice Zilberberg, I thought that this would be a conversation about photography. I soon learned that what Alice does is so much more.The list of awards Alice Zilberberg has received for her artwork is remarkable for someone so young. She most recently received first place in the International Photography Awards for her surreal portraits of wild animals in the series she calls "Meditations." One of the stars of the series and the place I wanted to start our conversation is a striking portrait of a bison. What I discovered is that Alice is not merely a photographer and a bison is not a buffalo. Alice Zilberberg:  I just started out with going to different zoos and seeing which animals I liked. Just the ones that kinda worked out were the ones that first made it into the series. But I always kind of have a vision of what it's going to look like even though that changes sometimes a lot throughout the process. So, I just really like the bison. It's a bison. Actually, it's technically, so you could say buffalo.Steve Waxman: I call turtles and tortoises the same things. I'm one of those cruel people.Alice Zilberberg: It's not just you, it's everyone. They mix up the animals in the technical term. Secondly, the North American bison is nicknamed a buffalo, but it's more technical term is bison.To see the entire transcript, visit imstevewaxman.comSince we conducted this interview, Alice's Meditations series has won two more award: The 2020 Color Awards - First Place and Outstanding Achievement in Wildlife / The 15th Julia Margaret Cameron Awards winner in the Wildlife category. That brings her awards total to close to 30.If you'd like to find out more about Alice or her artwork, please visit You can also see some of Alice’s artwork by visiting The Creationists podcast on Facebook or Instagram.
Thanks to his massively popular CBC program, Under The Influence, Terry O’Reilly has become one of Canada's most recognizable ad men. He has been a director and copywriter and has run his own multi award-winning agency as well as having written the books The Age of Persuasion and This I Know. And, his Under The Influence podcast has over 30 million downloads. What I’m trying to tell you is that when it comes to advertising, Terry O’Reilly knows what he’s talking about.The Creationists is a podcast about creativity wherever it might be found.  Advertisements are one of the most visible forms of creativity in our everyday lives. So, I reached out to Terry to take us through the creative process of developing an ad campaign. We started with one of the most successful of his career, the campaign that helped the NHL’s Hockey Hall of Fame launch their interactive games exhibit.Steve Waxman: What is the biggest mistake clients make when they come in to talk to an agency?Terry O’Reilly: Well, that’s a very multi-layered question. I think not handing the agency and real strategic material to work with. It all begins and ends with whatever the product or service is that is being advertised and not handing the agency anything interesting to work with.  But I think the bigger sin is really not wanting creativity. Not wanting bold ideas. And expressing that in the meeting.  The best clients I ever had were the ones that said “Give me a big idea. Make my palms sweat.”  And those were the clients, in fact, that we did that with. We came back with big ideas.  They recognized them.  They approved them.  The bad clients think that creativity is quirky and wonky and that creativity gets in the way of the message. These are the clients that think that all you have to do is clearly state your proposition, put it in a commercial, put it out there, people will absorb it and run out to buy something. Which never happens.Creative people make the assumption that no one listens to advertising. If you make that your starting point then you’ll make something interesting because creativity gets a foot in the door. And if someone is enamoured with the creativity of a commercial they might be willing to sit through that commercial and then we can get to the selling proposition. So creativity is amplification. Without creativity, it’s like giving a speech to a stadium without a microphone. Only the first couple of rows will hear you.  But, if you add creativity to the message, it’s like being amplified throughout the entire stadium and you have a much greater chance of getting most of that audience to listen to you.Steve Waxman: So then, what is the biggest mistake agencies make?To read the full transcript, please visit imstevewaxman.comTerry O’Reilly has just finished his 15th season on the CBC and in addition to producing shows for his Apostrophe podcast network, he’s now writing his third book. If you’re interested in advertising or marketing, I highly recommend listening to his Under The Influence podcast. You should also take the time to listen to Apostrophe’s latest, We Regret To Inform You: The Rejection Podcast which tells stories of adversity that people like Jay-Z, Lady Gaga and Stephen King had to go through before achieving their successes. If you want to find out more about Terry and Apostrophe please visit terryoreilly.caTo see more materials related to each episode of The Creationists, follow @thecreationistspodcast on Instagram or "Like" The Creation podcast on Facebook. Let us know who you’d like to be featured on future episodes of The Creationists: 
For close to 40 years, Toronto’s Now Magazine has been one of North America's preeminent and successful cultural guides. But it  wasn't always that way. 18 months after launching Now Magazine was struggling and founders Michael Hollett and Alice Klein were hoping to find new investors to keep the doors open. One of the potential investors was City TV’s Moses Znaimer who pulled Michael aside one night at a party and said that he might be happier if you didn't accept a second round of money from investors.Of all the people that I've interviewed so far, Michael Hollett is the one person most likely born into his profession. So, it only made sense to begin our conversation talking about his family's background in publishing.Michael Hollett: I've been thinking about this stuff lately because it's a reflective time. And the first Christmas present I ever got was a Toronto Star metal delivery truck - a shipping truck.The first Christmas party I ever went to was at the Toronto Press Club.  My grandfather was an editor at the Telegram. And my father was a writer, photographer and cartoonist at the Star. My mother freelanced at all of those papers and Maclean's. And my grandmother, my mother's mother, was also a freelancer. My parents met at a newspaper in Hamilton. And when I go to the Exhibition, I don't know if you know this but there's a building, a beautiful building to me called the Press Building. And my grandfather, conflict rules were a little different back then, also did P.R. for the Ex in the summers. I would visit him in the Press Building and there was a little balcony and I would stand there with him looking out over the Ex thinking this newspaper business is all right.Steve Waxman: (laughing) So, were you conceived on a stack of Toronto Stars?Michael Hollett: (laughing) Just about, man. Just about. For the full transcript of this episode visit imstevewaxman.comMichael Hollett left NOW Magazine in 2016 to concentrate on running the North By Northeast Festival. He’s now working towards launching a new print paper. If you’d like more information about North By Northeast, please visit To see more materials related to each episode of The Creationists, follow @thecreationistspodcast on Instagram or "Like" The Creation podcast on Facebook. Let us know who you’d like to be featured on future episodes of The Creationists: 
In 2017, the McMichael Art Collection in Kleinburg, Ontario debuted a unique exhibition.  Known as the home of Canada’s renown Group of Seven paintings, the McMichael gallery hosted the first showing of The Group of Seven Guitar project featuring seven early Canadian guitar builders paying tribute to the original Group of Seven painters.  The project was originally conceived and initiated by Linda Manzer who was featured in an earlier episode of The Creationists.  Following a year long showing at the McMichael gallery, the group of seven guitar project moved to Canada House in London, England where it received rave reviews.  You can find much more information about the project at see more materials related to each episode of The Creationists, follow @thecreationistspodcast on Instagram or "Like" The Creation podcast on Facebook. Let us know who you’d like to be featured on future episodes of The Creationists: 
Comments (1)

Joel Lambert

Great podcast Steve. Love it.

Jan 29th
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