DiscoverCreative Innovators with Gigi Johnson
Creative Innovators with Gigi Johnson

Creative Innovators with Gigi Johnson

Author: Maremel Institute

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Ready to get inspired to change your Career? Guests share their very non-linear career stories and how they have changed the ways we create and reimagine in music, art, live events, virtual events, video, film, education, and social innovation. Interviewed by Gigi Louisa Johnson, creators and innovators share how they became change agents in their own creative sectors -- and what drives them. Join us and get inspired for your own career transformation.
24 Episodes
Question: How do you decide what adventures to take in your nonlinear career?  What are intentional plans vs. accidents? Guest: Martin Atkins, Music Industries Coordinator, Millikin University; producer, drummer, documentary filmmaker, DJ, and teacherPhoto: Kara Hammond and NARASMartin Atkins talked with our host, Gigi Johnson, from his studio that also acts as a museum of all of the adventurous projects around his career.  Martin shared how he began drumming at age 9 and persistently getting into Public Image Ltd, waiting through 5 drummers.  He talked about believing early on that he had a job -- "it's being me."  He diversified by accident and kept adding roles as blockages came his way, including launching bands and labels.  Each time, he picked the best option that arose and looked for both safety nets and for solutions IN the problem itself.  Our GuestMartin Atkins is the definition of entrepreneurial activity in cultural arts endeavors, his 35+ years in the music business spans across genres, borders, and industries.He was a member of Public Image Ltd and Killing Joke. He founded industrial supergroup Pigface, The Damage Manual, and Murder Inc., and has contributed to Nine Inch Nails (for which he has a Grammy) and Ministry. He is the owner of Invisible Records and Mattress Factory Recording Studios (est. 1988). He is the author of "Tour:Smart, Welcome To The Music Business….You’re F*cked!” and "Band:Smart."  He is the Music Industries Coordinator at Millikin University in Decatur Illinois. Martin is a producer, drummer, documentary filmmaker, DJ, and father of four. Whatever the future of entrepreneurial music business education is, you can pretty much bet that he’ll be in the middle of it.Mentioned Links:Twitter @marteeeen (with 4 e's), with free download of Band:SmartSupport the show (
This was fun.  Your host, Gigi Johnson, has been speaking for college classes this past week and kept being asked to tell her/my story of the pivot points and non-linear decisions over 9 careers.So in this Tuesday Tidbit segment, I share the story of how I changed into a film major at USC based on postcard from my teaching assistant for a single class.  That changed my life and direction and those changes echo through my choices to this day.What postcards have you gotten in your life -- or elements that nudged you to turn left or right?  Do you see them?  Do you send them?  Support the show (
Question: What if you could build a company around your passions?In this episode, David Hernandez shares how he is unlearning and relearning what he knows to create competition for his company . . . in his own company!  He runs Colonize Media, a multiplatform network music aggregator.  He has worked to create “a very human culture” with his team of 30+ people and now works to “break artists from nothing.” Guest: David Hernandez, CEO, Colonize MediaDavid Hernandez is the CEO and co-founder of Colonize Media, a digital content distribution service created in 2015. Originally from Jalisco, Mexico, David Hernandez grew up in a family of performers and entertainers. David Hernandez has applied his love and passion for the music and entertainment industry to Colonize Media, which was first founded to help increase traction for Latin artists and their content. Colonize Media now serves over 10,000 independent artists and record labels across all genres with 600,000 tracks and videos and 3,000,000,000 monthly streams.Colonize Media’s goal is to aid in maximizing creators’ content, through marketing, advertising, and promotions. Colonize Media also helps artists to develop content strategies by analyzing digital data to better understand the music community as a whole, including listener demographics and listening trends. By helping clients reach a larger audience and generate more revenue, Colonize Media helps artists keep creating content they love. Links:David Hernandez - davidh@colonizemedia.comColonize Media - Book Gigi Mentioned: “Overcoming Underearning” by Barbara StannySupport the show (
Today starts the first segment of Tidbit Tuesday, which brings in parts of the Redesigning Your Creative Career program from is a Creative Career?What are we talking about when we throw around the term “creative career”? This could be having a traditional career in a creative industry, or it could be doing something that has creativity in the actual job. In terms of being different from non-creative careers, they tend to recruit differently, and often you can build your career differently. They tend to be both skill and relationship orientated, but don’t fit in nice little square boxes. As a result, there is often a lot more freedom which, in turn, can make it a more complicated career path to navigate on your own.Take a moment for some reflection. What are some differences that you anticipate or have experienced when navigating a creative versus a more traditional career path?And "see" you Thursday for our next guest on Creative Innovators. Redesign Your Creative Career Redesign your next Creative Career with resources at the Creative Innovator's Club. Support the show (
Question: What if you could pursue the creative projects that you already saw in the world?  Guest: Beatie Wolfe, Singer, Songwriter, Technologist (Photo: Ross Harris)In this episode, Beatie Wolfe takes us through her creative journey to become the technologist and artist she is today.  Back when she was 7 or 8, she began to imagine the “music books” (album covers) that she wanted over music and moved to reimagine the vinyl experience in her later work.  She shares her journey through projects like “Raw Space” (the anti-stream in the more quiet room in the world).  She also discussed “From Green to Red,” which she created for this year’s London Design Biennale, and “Postcards from Democracy” with Mark Mothersbough that will be a Featured Session at March 2021’s SXSW Online.  Enjoy Beatie’s journey to create and re-create our ceremonial experiences around music in the real world. About Beatie:“Musical weirdo and visionary” (Vice) Beatie Wolfe is an artist who has beamed her music into space, been appointed a UN role model for innovation, and held an acclaimed solo exhibition of her ‘world first’ album designs at the V&A Museum. Named by WIRED as one of "22 people changing the world,” Beatie Wolfe is at the forefront of pioneering new formats for music that bridge the physical and digital, which include: a 3D theatre for the palm of your hand; a wearable record jacket - cut by Bowie and Hendrix’s tailor out of fabric woven with Wolfe’s music - and most recently an ‘anti-stream’ from the quietest room on earth. Wolfe is also the co-founder of a “profound” (The Times) research project looking at the power of music for people living with dementia.The Barbican recently commissioned a documentary about Beatie Wolfe's pioneering work titled "Orange Juice for the Ears: From Space Beams to Anti-Streams" and Wolfe's latest innovation is an environmental protest piece built using 800,000 of historic data that will be premiered at the London Design Biennale in 2021.Mentioned Links:Beatie Wolfe: YouTube: Punk Rock by Virginia Boston - (2017) - “World’s first 3D Interactive Album App” - “Theater for the Palm of the Hand” - Montagu Square (2015) - Album Deck of Cards - Raw Space (2017) - Documentary about the album and Bell Labs - Victoria & Albert (2018) - “The Art of Music in the Digital Age” - SXSW Session - Mar. 18, 2021 - https://www.sxsw.comSupport the show (
Starting next Tuesday, we'll be sharing parts of the career exploration programs to tie in with the non-linear career stories from each of these podcast interviews.  We'll be sharing each week on Tuesdays a bit of the programs we have been working on for a few years with groups on how to expand your creative career, using examples from past and future interview episodes.  Listeners can continue the programs for free in our online program spaces and can share them with friends. Support the show (
Question: What if you need to leave creative work to deal with crisis?  How can you bring your creativity to other fields?  Guest: Christopher Zyda, Author; CEO, Mozaic LLCIn this episode, Christopher Zyda shares his journey through the 1980s AIDS pandemic as a young professional writer-to-be and his shift into finance to help care for his partner while dealing with insecurities and fears in launching a life.  He tells of his choices to go to graduate school, his persistence and a kind person that got him into Disney finance, his Zelig-like choices of taking financial leadership roles at Amazon, eBay, and a mortgage finance company, and his newer role of leading Mozaic, a financial investment firm. All of this work in finance still involved storytelling and learning everything he can.  Chris tells the story of returning back to writing with his biography of his own AIDS-era journey with his new book “The Storm.” About ChrisChristopher Zyda is the author of The Storm: One Voice from the AIDS Generation.Chris is also the CEO of Mozaic-LLC, an independent, privately-owned firm that focuses on wealth management, family office, and corporate advisory services. He has over 30 years of investment management and senior-level corporate finance experience at several high-profile growth companies including The Walt Disney Company,, and eBay.Chris earned a Masters Degree in Business Administration from the UCLA Anderson School of Management in 1989 with a concentration in Finance and achieved Beta Gamma Sigma honors. Chris also earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in English Literature from the University of California Los Angeles in 1984.Chris serves on the UCLA English department Board of Visitors, the advisory board for the LZ-Grace Warrior Retreat for special operations warrior veterans and Tier 1 first responders, and the advisory board for Veterans in Media and Entertainment.In addition to investments and finance, Chris enjoys training in CrossFit and Olympic lifting, running, skiing, river rafting, playing the piano, and creative writing.Links:Website: Czyda.comSupport the show (
In this episode, Laura Escudé takes us on her journey from violinist to adventures in Los Angeles as a seat filler for TV shows from Craig’s list to market research to other one-off jobs. . . until she becomes a tech support staffer at M-Audio because of problems she had with her own keyboard.  For listeners who are inspired by linear journeys, this is not one.  Instead, Laura was launched from being laid off as the first Ableton Certified Trainer.  An email got her working for Cirque du Soleil in playback.  A phone call from all of her Ableton visibility brought her to Kanye West’s audio engineer and then years of touring.  Until it wasn’t -- and she shares the story of how in 2017 she rebuilt her career about teaching and inspiration in audio engineering around “transmuting” creators - “to move from one form of energy into another.”  Enjoy her story of building a global community of artists and creating new online programs ahead of the current virtual learning world.  And enjoy her stories of what she now has built with the Transmute Accelerator and Transmute Academy.Photo credit: Nicholas JamesGuest: Laura Escudé (fka ALLUXE), Future Classical artist blending music, tech, and consciousnessLaura Escudé is the creator of The Transmute™ Accelerator, Founder of Electronic Creatives, and an Ableton Certified Trainer since 2008. Career highlights include performing in the GRAMMY Premiere band, programming and designing shows for Kanye West from 2009-2017, opening for Miguel on his 2015 Wildheart tour, and building a thriving international business populated by top-tier professionals.  She’s done official remixes for artists, including M83 and Poliça, with her violin playing featured on albums by Big Grams, Kanye West, Jay Z, and many more. She’s released myriad albums, singles, and EPs under the name ALLUXE, synthesizing her skills as a classically trained violinist and her prowess as an avant-garde electronic producer. Now making music under her own name, Escudé released the Transmute EP, her most intimate work to date, capturing the sound and feel of a woman who’s examined the darkest parts of herself and come out the other end transformed. Technology is a second language for Escudé, who became the world’s first Ableton Certified Trainer in 2008. In 2012, she founded Electronic Creatives, using her skills to hire and train programmers and playback engineers for artists including Logic, Ariana Grande, The Weeknd, Big Sean, Charli XCX, and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs.  She’s brought massive productions to life for artists including Kanye West, Jay Z, Bon Iver, Missy Elliot, Herbie Hancock, and television megabrand American Idol. Escudé toured extensively with these shows, collaborating with artists to create fresh, thrilling experiences for audiences worldwide.Mentioned LinksTransmute Academy: https://www.thetransmuteacademy.comWeb: andInstagram: the show (
Dae Bogan shares how he sees solutions and “warps” them into business ideas -- which is both a blessing and a curse. He began with selling cakes in middle school and organizing bus tours in high school from Cleveland, OH to New York. From his early history in acting, singing, and creating and producing events, he moved into a long series of start-ups (including putting gogo dancers in store windows) before moving into various endeavors in music tech. Dae has started and sold a variety of cloud-based ventures as well as mentored founders of other startups. Dae shares how he now is bringing those diverse skills to bear as head of Third-Party Partnerships with The Music Licensing Collective. The MLC works with music publishers and artists to collect and distribute their streaming royalties. Guest: Dae Bogan, Head of Third-Party Partnerships, The Mechanical Licensing Collective (The MLC)Dae Bogan serves as Head of Third-Party Partnerships for The Mechanical Licensing Collective (The MLC), where he leads The MLC’s strategy for engaging third-party entities to support initiatives in rights administration, data management, operations, and membership services. A passionate music creators' rights advocate who enjoys exploring the global music rights landscape through the lens of business and technology, Bogan is also an adjunct lecturer at the UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music. In this role, Bogan develops and teaches the music industry entrepreneurship course for which he was recognized in Billboard's "The 15 Best Music Business Schools In 2017." Prior to joining The MLC and teaching at UCLA, Bogan’s passion for innovation at the intersection of music and technology led him to found three companies: music rights administration technology company TuneRegistry, unclaimed music royalties, and licenses search engine RoyaltyClaim, and in-store music video network Maven Promo. Each of these companies has since been acquired. Early in his career, Bogan worked directly and more creatively with recording artists, songwriters, music producers, and DJs as the owner-operator of an independent record label, a music publishing company, and a boutique artist management firm before pivoting into technology in 2012.  Dae holds an MA in Music Industry Administration with a focus on music publishing and copyright administration from California State University, Northridge, and a BA in sociology from the University of California. He resides in Los Angeles, California where he organizes SoCal Music Industry Professionals, an informal networking community of music industry professionals who live in Southern California.Mentioned Links:Website: @daeboganmusicFacebook: @daeboganmusicInstagram: @daeboganmusicUCLA Herb Alpert School of Music: Music Licensing Collective (The MLC): https://themlc.comSWOT: Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats AnalysisPESTLE: Political, Economic, Social, Tech, Legal, and Environmental Change FactorsTAM: Total Available MarketCSUN: Cal State Northridge: https://csun.eduSXSW Music Mentors: Music Group / gBETA Musictech program: Support the show (
In this episode, we hear how Bas Den Brader and Jenna Seiden are following their purpose with Zambezi Partners, a benefits corporation with a mission to eradicate African wildlife poaching during our lifetime.  They both worked in large company business-to-business strategy, consulting, and brand leadership, and have found their purposes after their mid-career reality checks.  Their careers in their subsequent order built toward new opportunities . . . that led to their using tech tools to advance anti-poaching solutions.  They “grok” larger organizations and see the barriers to change -- and share that experience as interpreters between tech and technology to create forward momentum and innovation with saving species of animals.  On Dec. 13, 2020, at, they are having a fundraiser to support fundraising around people on the ground, as well as the technologies being used to complement what they do . . . staying on track to save these animals . . . and on KNECT TV app on your Roku Player and other devices. Support this podcastSupport the show (
Tania Katan shares her wit and wisdom about how to use creativity to challenge with playfulness our rigid organizational cultures.  She works with large and small companies, helping them find new alignment around their daily contradictions through “small c” creative work, facing everyday practical problems with imagination.  She shares the tales of #itwasneveradress (re-seeing the ladies’ room logo into a cape) and challenging the community to arm wrestle for art at the Scottsdale Museum of Art.  She speaks and challenges how we connect virtually in her keynotes and works with organizational leaders through her “Creative Trespassing” classes and new membership organization.Guest: Tania Katan, CEO, Creative TrespassingTania is a transformational speaker, innovation coach, and co-creator of globally viral women’s empowerment campaign #ItWasNeverADress. Her unique way of formulating ideas led to the groundbreaking bestselling book, “Creative Trespassing: How to Put the Spark and Joy Back into Your Work and Life” (Penguin Random House, February 2019).For over a decade, Tania has been successfully sneaking creativity into Fortune 500 companies, leading tech companies, arts organizations, marketing conventions and innovation summits to teach people and companies the skill of generating creative breakthroughs. Some of the organizations and major conferences impacted by her work include: CiscoLive!, Expedia, Amazon, Google, Humana, Etsy, TED, World Domination Summit, Uber, and Comedy Central Stage.Katan’s status-quo-busting work has also appeared in The New York Times, USA Today, HuffPost, Time, BuzzFeed, CNN, Adweek, Mashable, Forbes, ReadWrite and Amy Poehler’s Smart Girls, among others.If you long to leap from fear to freedom and just need a map… Here You Are: Creative Trespassing: How to Put the Spark and Joy Back into Your Work and Life - @taniakatanInstagram: @TheUnrealTaniaKatan Inspirational Newsletter (get a FREE chapter of Creative Trespassing when you sign up):“Creative Trespassing” Book: Mentions:Sonya Renee Taylor - Patricia Stokes, “Creativity from Constraints in the Performing Arts” - - - https://itwasneveradress.orgByron Katie - https://thework.comPema Chödrön - https://pemachodronfoundation.orgThich Nhat Hanh, Vietnamese Buddhist monk - wrestling for art at the Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art - Mary Oliver, Support the show (
Megan Elliott shares her journey from Australia and indigenous cultural media to trade union representation in Ireland to traveling across Asia connecting leaders and cultures . . before she was found on LinkedIn to bring her superpowers to Nebraska.  She tells of the shared collaborative creation of the Johnny Carson Center for Emerging Media Arts, which works to create “pirates, magicians, and wizards” who can reach their dream job or create their dream company right out of school.  Guest: Megan Elliott, Founding Director, Johnny Carson Center for Emerging Media Arts, University of Nebraska, LincolnMegan Elliott is the founding director of the Johnny Carson Center for Emerging Media Arts at the University of Nebraska Lincoln. She was previously the manager of leadership and community connections at the University of Technology Sydney in Australia and former director and CEO of digital media think-tank X Media Lab.From 2015-2016, Elliott served as the manager of Leadership and Community Connections at the University of Technology Sydney in Sydney, Australia’s number-one young university, where she led an international program for students to develop leadership and entrepreneurial skills, as well as instilling a commitment to innovation, social justice, community building, and sustainability.Elliott has deep ties to emerging media industries across Asia, Europe, and the world. She served as co-founder and director of China Creative Industries Exchange in Beijing and Shanghai, China, from 2007-2015.From 2005 to 2015, Elliott was the director/chief executive officer for X Media Lab (XML), an internationally acclaimed digital media think-tank and creative workshop for the creative industries that she co-founded with Brendan Harkin.  She also served from 2002-2006 as the executive director of the Australian Writers’ Guild.Originally from Australia, Elliott received her bachelor’s degree from the University of Canberra in Bruce, AustraliaMentioned LinksMeganEmail: megan.elliott@unl.eduLinkedIn: Carson Center for Emerging Media Arts, Univ. of Nebraska, LincolnWebsite: FB: IG: McKensie Wark, Professor of Media and Cultural Studies, The New School (NYC) - and Lynette Walworth, Australian filmmaker/artist/activist - Media & Entertainment Arts Alliance, Australia (MEAA) - The National University of Ireland Galway - Australian Writers’ Guild - X Media Labs - http://xmedialab.comBrendan Harkin - Support the show (
Ale Cohen and Mark "Frosty" McNeill share their journey through “experimenting with sound” and community in building the Internet radio collective DUBLAB over the past two decades. They share what inspired and drove them to build this institution and how it has shifted gears in our listen-from-home global era.  Dublab is not your average radio station. Mark calls it “experimentation with sound” that was formed as a reaction to the 1996 Telecommunications Act, which forced the closure of low-power stations. We talked about online radio as a “misuse of technology” -- as a “hack” and a mutant use of tech. Initially, dublab acted as “an excuse to gather the creative community of Los Angeles.” They share stories of how contemporary much often started out of the studio and how dublab became a testing ground for new sound and to honor the music that went before.Guests: Mark “Frosty” McNeill, Founder, and Alejandro Cohen, Director, dublabAlejandro Cohen is a musician and composer from Los Angeles, and the Director of non-profit radio station DUBLAB. Over the last two decades, Cohen has released music under numerous projects and groups including Languis and Pharaohs. He has composed music for TV shows, documentaries, and educational materials, and recorded more than two hundred solo artists and bands as a sound engineer and consultant for, KPFK 90.7 FM, Sony/Columbia, and the Society for the Activation of Social Space Through Art and Sound (SASSAS). As Executive Director of the Internet radio station and creative collective DUBLAB, Cohen curates the station’s programming and podcast offerings, fundraises for the organization, and curates the annual ambient music event Tonalism.Mark “Frosty” McNeill is a DJ, radio producer, sonic curator, filmmaker, and creative community builder based in Los Angeles. He was the founder of, a pioneering web radio station that has been exploring wide-spectrum music since 1999. McNeill hosts Celsius Drop, a weekly dublab radio show and has produced long-running programs for Red Bull Radio, Marfa Public Radio, and KPFK 90.7fm. McNeill co-curated/produced the Pacific Breeze compilations of Japanese City Pop music for Light in the Attic Records as well as Somewhere Between, a forthcoming album focused on the more experimental side of Japanese pop. His output on a multitude of international media platforms has focused on sharing transcendent sonic experiences.Mentioned LinksEmail: info@dublab.comFrostyWeb: @dublabfrostyInstagram: @dubfrostyFacebook: @dubfrostyAleWeb: links: KUSC - KXSC - SASSAS - The Society for the Activation of Social Space through Art and Sound - Echo Park Film Center - Support the show (
In this episode, Arabian Prince shares the rest of the story -- both before and after working with NWA. He shares how he got started with tech, entrepreneurship, and music creation at a young age. He talks with Gigi about how he taught himself new gaming and creative technologies, and how he brings that energy to his many current adventures. Guest: Arabian Prince, Founder of iNov8 Next Open Labs and GGGOAT; Partner at Covitech; President, Next CareersA songwriter, rapper, producer, DJ, technologist Pro Gamer and futurist, Arabian Prince is best known for being a founding member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame-inducted rap group N.W.A., West Coast electro music pioneer, and producer of the Grammy-nominated #1 hit song Supersonic. Founder of iNov8 Next Open Labs, GGGOAT, and Partner at Covitech. He also is the President of Next Careers, a non-profit working with 1,500 FIRST Tech Challenge roboticists, grades 7-12, across Southern California.His passion for technology led to him create a 3D animation and special effects studio in the ’90s working with companies like Saban Entertainment and Fox, including 100+ videogame, film, and TV titles for Fox interactive and Vivendi Universal. As a consultant, Arabian has advised many companies on bridging the gap between technology and the youth, while bringing new product innovations to market. He is currently working with his tech partners to bring Open Labs to communities across the country in support of youth, women, diversity, veterans, and anyone else who wants to explore the future of technology.Mentioned Links:@OGArabianPrinceTwitter - IG - LinkedIn - SoLa Impact - https://solaimpact.commClassic - - Support the show (
In this episode, Akira Nakano takes us through his journeys in piano performance, music composition, video editing, and starting a non-profit. These led to the launch of the LA Inception Orchestra, which works with youth and composers to launch Composers of Tomorrow. He shares his experience in piloting a learning non-profit organization and how his diverse skills and relationships combined into its launch and now growth in this Learn-From-Home era.Guest: Akira Nakano, President, CEO, and Artistic Director, Los Angeles Inception OrchestraAkira Nakano studied at the Colburn School of Performing Arts in both piano and percussion, soloing with numerous orchestras throughout Southern California as a young performer. He studied with Dr. Heewon Kwon with masterclasses from Jeffrey Kahane, Leon Fleischer, Ilana Vered, John Perry, and Daniel Pollack. He was the winner of the 1st Annual Herbert Zipper Award in Music Composition amongst other piano competitions. Entering UCLA on a full-ride piano performance scholarship, he won the UCLA Concerto Competition and graduated with a B.A. in Film & Television production.Mr. Nakano spent over twelve years working as a video editor, writer, producer, and live event director at TRW Space & Electronics and went on to have 20+ years of video marketing/communications and film producing experience which will dovetail into the LA Inception Orchestra's Virtual Reality/360 music education program. Akira returned to the Zipper Hall stage in March 2012 with a solo recital accompanied by Michael Sushel. In September 2013, he paired with the Dream Orchestra in a concert of Liszt, Rachmaninov, and several original works. Since then, Akira has appeared as a performer/lecturer as part of the Great Speaker Series at the Beach Club in Santa Monica benefiting the California State Parks Foundation; soloed with the Southeast Symphony; and has played multiple engagements at the Huntington Library President's house for their donor dinners.Mentioned Links:Websites link for Nov 7th Event - Orchestra - www.inceptionorchestra.orgAmerican Society of Music Arrangers and Composers (ASMAC) - asmac.orgAdditional Links:Classical Saxophone Project - Family Foundation - foxgiving.orgCenter for Asian Americans United for Self Empowerment - causeusa.orgAsia American Symphony Association - aasymphony.orgColburn School - UCLA Extension Film Composition Program - ertificate/film-scoring  TRW - Support the show (
In this episode, Christopher Hope shares his journey to found The Loop Lab in Cambridge, MA. He learned through DJing, community service, religious studies, and partnering with local organizations to deliver a unique blend of higher education, apprenticeships, and entrepreneurship training. He has grown this nonprofit into a live and virtual training program for womxn and BIPOC youth to build jobs and creative companies in audiovisual industries. He began locally in The Port neighborhood and now connects with community leaders around the world. We discussed challenges in launching and growing The Loop Lab and its transformation during the current WFH challenges -- including how they are helping other non-profits in their local communities.Guest: Christopher Hope, Founder and Exec. Director, The Loop LabChristopher Hope, CTS is the founder and executive director of The Loop Lab, a non-profit dedicated to empowering young adults of color to enter careers in the media arts industry in Cambridge, MA. Hope received his B.A. from Tufts University, and a Masters at Harvard Divinity School. He now serves on the board of advisors for the George Washingon University School of Business in D.C., for the My Brother's Keeper Task Force in the Cambridge Mayors office, and on the community board of Lesley College of Art + Design. He is also an alumnus of the Creative Community Fellowship with the National Arts Strategies and has served on board of the South By Southwest festival (SXSW) in Austin, Texas.Hope is also an accomplished audio-video professional and on-air DJ with a podcast and radio broadcast called “Hip-Hope Radio,” having interviewed guests like Dr. Cornel West.The Loop Lab:The Loop Lab is a Cambridge-based non-profit social enterprise specializing in media arts internships and digital storytelling. Their mission is to empower Womxn and People of Color in the media arts to develop careers in audio/video through job training and job placement. As an organization, they are committed to ending inequality and racism through digital storytelling.Photo credit - Matt Malikowski/ The Loop LabMentioned Links:The Loop LabWebsite: www.TheLoopLab.orgIG: Hope: and chope@thelooplab.orgEastern Bank: https://www.easternbank.comWBUR/NPR, Boston: https://www.wbur.orgMoses Michel: Port neighborhood: Tabernacle: https://ptspice.orgLeslie School of Art + Design: Franklin Institute of Technology: https://www.bfit.eduLISC Boston: https://www.lisc.orgSupport the show (
In this episode, Sasha Samochina shares her journey connecting art, VR, and science together -- to her trio of roles at NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL). She illustrates why she is “thankful for [her] boldness” in interning and pushing into each new job and new technology. The Field Museum in Chicago became an opportunity to connect art, science, computing, and social storytelling. By the end, you’ll see the arc that returned to her desire as a young student to be a teacher and librarian but on an inter/planetary scale.  Guest: Sasha Samochina, Deputy Manager of the Ops Lab, Project Lead for ProtoSpace, and the Technical Group Supervisor for the User Interface Development Group (397M) at NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL)Sasha Samochina (sam-ocean-uh) is an Emmy award-winning creative technologist. She joined the team at NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) after working in New York in the fields of video and web development and in Chicago, where she was a Media Producer at The Field Museum of Natural History. After dreaming up content for JPL’s Communications department, she began to explore the world of 360 videos and XR. Through Sasha’s visualization skills, she pioneered the very first 360° video release on social media for NASA. She is currently the Deputy Manager of the Ops Lab, Project Lead for ProtoSpace, and the Technical Group Supervisor for the User Interface Development Group (397M) at JPL. Sasha dedicated herself to helping create software that incorporates innovative forms of visualization that aid scientists, engineers, and astronauts in transforming their workflow, and she leverages that same experiential technology to educate and inspire the public to engage in STEAM. She loves all things digital, animal, sound-emitting, cosmic, and views the world through XR-colored glasses.Mentioned Links:Sasha’s overall work: CloudSasha - https://www.cloudsasha.comReach out: Twitter: @cloudsasha - IG: @Cloudsasha - - von Karman lecture - NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL): https://jpl.nasa.govFacebook: Twitter: YouTube: IG: Access Mars: Protospace: NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory: https://www.jpl.nasa.govField Museum of Natural History: Hololens: Stack Morgan at JPL: Cassini’s Grand Finale: “Reach Across the Stars” AR app on Female Space & Science Heroes for smartphones from the Smithsonian Institute: Support the show (
In this episode, Ty Frankel shares how as a young music creator and entrepreneur he pushed to create relationships to build Shut Down Media. His multi-country company creates hip hop music for integration into film and television. He talks about how he overcame obstacles, how he got distracted, and how he returned to his core business. He talked about being inspired by Rich Dad, Poor Dad and other books on how to build his career. Ty shares how his company has pivoted with film and television during this crisis, and how it has spurred him to launch even more adventures. Guest: Ty Frankel, Founder and CEO, Shut Down MediaTy Frankel started making rap beats from his home in Israel at just 14 years old. Since inception in 2017, Shut Down Media has grown with divisions like Shut Down Production Music, Shut Down Art, and Shut Down Sync. In only three years, Shut Down Media has worked with clients such as UMPG, Warner, NBA 2K, Fortnite, The Ellen Show, Mercedes-Benz, and many more. Ty is a writer for UPMG and Warner and has secured placements on shows like Saturday Night Live. Not only has he built multiple companies at the age of 22, but he's also created new in-house record labels with the likes of FirstCom and No Sheet Music.Mentioned Links:Email: Ty@shutdownmedia.netTwitter: @thetyfrankel Down Media:LinkedIn: and IG: @Shutdown_pm @thetyfrankelSoundcloud:  Twitter: Com Music: No Sheet Music: BooksRich Dad, Poor Dad: How to Win Friends and Influence People:   Support this podcastSupport the show (
Zack Zalon has shifted and grown along with a transforming music industry. He began as (and still is) a musician, then blossomed at the Troubadour before launching into websites, marketing, Farm Club, Virgin, and through that Moment of Mojo into taking his background and the now-possible world of artificial intelligence into Super Hi-Fi. We wrap up with advice to his younger self after this intriguing journey across music and digital transformation.Guest: Zack Zalon, Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Super Hi-FiZack Zalon is co-founder and CEO of Super Hi-Fi, a Los Angeles-based music technology company that is creating transformative listening experiences for the world’s largest music experience providers. Current partners include Peloton, iHeart, The Associated Press, Universal Music Group, Napster, and Target Spot. Zack also is a musician, with a recent release in 2018 of “Into the Great Divide.”Prior to Super Hi-Fi, Zalon served as co-founder and managing partner for We See Dragons, a “S.W.A.T.-style” digital agency that developed consumer platforms for brands including National Geographic, Johnson & Johnson, Ticketmaster, Comcast, Citibank, Experian, and Madison Square Garden. Earlier, Zalon was Managing Partner at Wilshire Media Group; President of Virgin Digital, the global digital platform for the Virgin Group; President of The Factory Network; and general manager of Doug Weston’s Troubadour.Mentioned Links:URL: Zack Zalon - Super Hi-Fi - Brandon Cassidy: mentioned: YouTube interview about “Into the Great Divide” 2018 “instrumental progressive rock novel: https://www.troubadour.comSupport the show (
Enjoy the tales of Carlo Fox, Ben Willis, and Josh Andriano working together as the three-partner independent music management company leadership team running Indie-Pop. After meeting when Josh and Ben married sisters (no longer in the picture), they formed Indie-Pop and have learned to work together making decisions about talent, investment, and growth . . . and now in starting a new independent music label, They discuss future rights flow in building generational wealth for artists and their reasons for launching a new label in these streaming times. They close with how their lockdown experiences have made them see their daily lives and spend their time in a new way -- rethinking family, health, relationships, and travel.Guests: Carlo Fox, Co-Founder and CEO; Ben Willis, Co-Founder and Strategic Relations, and Joshua Andriano, Co-Founder and Head of New Talent, Indie-Pop and Independent.coCarlo Fox: Carlo came into Indie-Pop as the social media whiz and now is CEO and co-lead of both companies.  Ben Willis: An executive and entrepreneur with over two decades of music-business experience, Ben Willis is forging a new path for artists who defy the confines of pop convention. He’s devoted much of his career to identifying left-of-center talent with a potentially massive appeal, then incubating that talent in order to foster both artistic integrity and long-lasting success.Joshua Andriano: Josh is a former DJ turned former entertainment attorney turned co-founder. He is a New York Law School graduate who shifted into music in 2008 and is now Indie-Pop and Independent Co-Founder and Partner.Indie-Pop: Founded in 2008, Indie-Pop had its first triumph with The Cataracs (a hip-hop duo they helped propel to multi-platinum status) and later helped build the career of rapper/singer/songwriter KYLE (whose Indie-Pop-released hit “iSpy” went six-times-platinum). With Indie-Pop’s roster including global artists like Malaysian singer/songwriter Yuna, the team now co-launching Independent—a record-label solution offering all the creative benefits of autonomy while securing exceptionally fair and financially compelling deals for each artist.Mentioned LinksIndie-Pop:’s LinkedIn:’s LinkedIn:’s LinkedIn: Cataracs: Support this podcastSupport the show (
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