They say that anything is possible in America. Although that’s not strictly true, it’s here I’ve made movies, won film competitions and interviewed some of the most famous people in the world. And I’m now proud to say that I’ve launched my own podcast.
My mission statement for the show is simple. I want to interview the many creative people I meet in LA about their life, their work and their passions. And I didn’t want to have to wait to be commissioned to do it.
Frustrated with editors not having the budget or space to run my stories, I decided to create my own platform. There’s nothing quite like being in control of your own ship.
And the reality is that living so close to Hollywood, I have incredible access to many wonderful artists. The show is about getting to know them better, finding out what makes them tick and also having some fun along the way.
And it’s great. There’s lucid conversation (most of the time), researched questions and sponsorship. Thank you Brits in LA. (The title, by the way, is a modern-day homage to ‘Letter from America’, the show that ran on Radio 4 for many years, and was presented by the erudite Alistair Cooke).
Some of my guests are famous, some are almost famous and some are not famous at all but the one thing they have in common is that they’re all compelling interviewees.
Each episode comes in at just under an hour, which some people have said is too long, but my argument for a longer running time is this: on ‘Podcast from America’ you’ll get to learn new things about people, because they get the chance to tell their stories and share anecdotes you won’t have heard before.
Hard to believe I know but intelligent people with attention spans do exist. And the show’s length is perfect for listening to during your daily commute or gym session.
Wait. What? You don’t know what a podcast is?
A friend emailed today to tell me that she’d clicked on my link but couldn’t get the video to work. There is no video, it’s audio. Think of it as taking a slice of radio and putting it on your iPod or mp3 player. You can do that actually – that’s how I listen to The Archers every week.
The inaugural episode (the pilot was called ‘The Lisa Podcast’ so don’t be confused when you click on iTunes, that will change soon) was released September 1st.
Episode one features amazing documentary photographer Janette Beckman (with me, above left), who made her name with her visceral images of the punk and hip-hop movements. Her photographs are classics. Just Google her and you’ll find wonderful images of Joe Strummer, The Sex Pistols or Run DMC. We met at the Project Space gallery in Hollywood where her exhibition, ‘Archive of Attitude’ was attracting all the right attention. I will be forever grateful to her for being my guinea pig (pod?).
My next guest is Craig Young, who found fame in the UK, in the mid-Nineties, in a pop group called Deuce. He’s now a successful actor in Hollywood and had some amazing stories to share. After that, the line up continues to be equally magnificent.