Hello, hello, hello! Welcome to another entry in the podcast spotlight series. In case you’re wondering about last week’s missing entry, I was away in China and had limited internet access there. Fortunately, I did have the opportunity to catch up on some podcasts, 2 of which I’ll present here. Without further ado, let’s get into it.
PODCAST SPOTLIGHT: Song Exploder
The show Song Exploder, hosted by musician Hrishikesh Hirway, takes the first podcast spotlight for today. In each episode, a musical artist dissects one of their songs; providing rationale for melodies or telling the stories behind lyrics. At the end, the song is presented whole, and the listener is better able to appreciate its parts. If you’re interested in what goes on in the song-writing process, this is definitely the podcast for you.
One of the most immediate things you’ll notice is the host’s role, or rather the lack of it. This is as the host is only present in the introduction and advertising spots. Elsewhere, the listener does not even get to hear Hirway’s questions. Rather, the artist dominates the bulk of the show, telling their story with the occasional sprinkle of demo takes or guitar riffs. In this sense, you could argue that Song Exploder is the podcast equivalent to the YouTube channel Genius. However, since it is easier to showcase technical production methods using video rather than audio, Song Exploder focuses more on the story where Genius is more about the process. You can watch one of its episodes below to see what I mean.
Episode 73: Busdriver “Worlds to run (ft. Milo and Anderson Paak)”
The podcast spotlight episode I want to feature today is with the artist Busdriver and the track “Worlds to Run”. The reason why I think this episode stands out is because it is a great example of the storytelling aspect of songwriting. For instance, while producer Kenny Segal talks about the process behind the main melody of the track, Busdriver talks about the emotional longing of the guitar strums. This is also seen when Busdriver details the stylistic contrast between himself and Milo. While Busdriver is known for his hyperliterate, intellectual style, Milo is more personal and intimate with his lyrics. Interestingly, Busdriver also notes how Milo’s verse influenced the refrain of the track.
To illuminate this, here is part of Milo’s verse:
//This slack-jaw mealy-mouth
I mumble when I’m ’round the house
I’m trying not to do no chores today
Crying in my underwear
I lost my sense of wonder, there
No, I’m not Milan Kundera
Though this lightness is unbearable//
And here is Busdriver’s refrain:
//I can run the world from my mama’s house
I can run the world from my mama’s house
I can run the world from my mama’s house
I can run the world//
Busdriver would explain how Milo’s verse laid the emotional context for the refrain. Where Milo talks about feeling aimless and desolate, Busdriver evokes individual agency (I can run the world) with personal intimacy (from my mama’s house).
Lastly, I just want to highlight an example of Busdriver’s hyperliterate style. Within the episode he mentions this particular part of his verse:
//Driver old as f***
My daughter old enough to vote
Rap songs blowing up on the coast//
The boastful way in which the lines are delivered is notable. It is almost defiant since old age is rarely celebrated, much less something to be boastful about. The reference to his daughter is then the literate manner in which he brings about his point.
You can check out the episode below:
PODCAST SPOTLIGHT: H3 Podcast
The next podcast spotlight goes to the H3 Podcast, hosted by husband and wife duo Ethan and Hila Klein. It is good to mention here that the hosts are better known for their YouTube channel, H3H3 productions, rather than for podcasts. But where H3h3 deliver edited and stylized content in their videos, their podcast episodes are more raw and honest. Therefore, they provide a platform where their audience can get to know Ethan and Hila or their guests on a more personal level.
In terms of structure, the show follows a simple interview format. Yet, the theme, in relation to the guests and the nature of their discussion, is more focused on YouTube and its environment of creators and viewers. In this sense, the podcast is very much an extension of their own work, but also a wonderful insight into having YouTube as a living. You should listen to the podcast if you want to learn more about the YouTube space, or are interested in the lives of content creators like H3H3 productions.
#14 – Soflo Antonio
The next podcast spotlight episode I want to introduce is their interview with Soflo Antonio. Now, this guest is noteworthy for 2 reason. Firstly, H3H3 created a video a few years ago to criticize the way that Antonio was stealing video content from other creators and publishing them on Facebook as his own. This resulted in a back-and-forth over video rebuttals, culminating in H3H3 creating a parody Facebook page stealing Antonio’s content. Ironically enough, Antonio’s main Facebook page would swallow the parody page and all its followers, thereby leaving some tension between the parties.
If you are interested in the entire debacle, you can watch the videos in this playlist.
The second reason why this episode is noteworthy is that it presents a glimpse into the growing industry of content creators. And Antonio is distinguished at the age of 22, where he is already managing a media company under the SoFlo brand whose content reaches millions of viewers. Yet, he is also expanding into different business ventures such as drop-shipping to diversify his revenue streams. Elsewhere in this episode, Antonio also shares his beliefs and some of the lessons he has learn starting his business. As such, this is a fascinating insight into the modern day entrepreneur, and a must listen for any budding content-creator or entrepreneur.
You can listen to the episode here:
And that’s it for this week’s podcast spotlight! Hope you found something worthwhile to listen to. Follow the Economical Rice Podcast on Facebook for the latest updates!