#AIRsters Spotlight: New sounds for your ears

October 23, 2017—The AIR in Real Time live feed showcases producers doing what they do best: Making story. Join us this week as we dive into mixtape journalism, an 11,000 mile road trip, and the stories behind how we became human. Take a listen to the spotlighted pieces (one of which is produced by an all-AIRsters team!), then contribute your own work with the hashtag #AIRsters on social media. You could be featured!

Far From Home, Scott Gurian

“I describe Far From Home as a podcast about my unexpected adventures and chance encounters with interesting people around the world. For this first season, I’m documenting an 11,000 mile road trip I took through 18 countries, eight time zones, five mountain ranges, and a few deserts, from London to Mongolia in a ridiculously tiny car. I’ve always loved traveling and experiencing different cultures, and back when I worked in public radio, some of the best and most memorable experiences I had took place when I was reporting abroad, so I’ve decided to keep traveling and sharing my experiences with my listeners. I think the underlying theme of much of my work on the podcast is that nearly everywhere I go, people are generally more alike than they are different, so I’m thrilled to have the opportunity to include conversations and interactions I have with folks in such far-flung places at Iran, Russia, and Kazakhstan, to dispel stereotypes and show how fascinating and complex the world really is.

I’ve been a member of AIR for probably about 15 years now. It’s been an excellent resource as I’ve delved into podcasting for the first time and sought answers to my many technical questions. I’ve also used the AIRdaily to get advice on what the reporting rules are in various countries and to connect with local fixers in places like Southeast Asia. It’s so great to be part of this community!”

Origins Stories, Meredith Johnson

Origin Stories is The Leakey Foundation’s podcast about how we became human. We explore big questions about why we are the way we are. Who are we? What makes us different from chimpanzees? How and why did we start making art and music? We tell the stories behind the search for answers to these questions.

I love making this podcast! The science is fascinating and the scientists are amazing people to talk to. Looking at today’s human experience by exploring our deep history makes me think about life very differently and I enjoy that perspective.

The AIR community has been essential for the production of Origin Stories. We are an AIRster team. Our editor is Julia Barton, sound design is by Katie McMurran, Shuka Kalantari is our associate producer. I started the show two years ago with AIR member Audrey Quinn as editor. She’s now at WNYC, but she produced a wonderful episode for this season. We also use AIR to easily book tape syncs around the world.”

The White Whale, Garrett Tiedmann

“As its description says, The White Whale is a place of audio and a place of ideas. I think about the episodes as spaces of listening, spaces of composition. I was formally trained as a composer and poet so I think about rhythm, the musicality of language, and moments of non-literal sound design that make for an empowered listening space. Making The White Whale is as much about sound, about the space of sound, as it is about the content of interview tape. I genuinely see each episode more like a piece of composition and think about it like a composer rather than a piece of audio journalism (though it is that as well).

It’s a space of inquiry, seeing the podcast as an art form to interrogate and method from which to explore the mechanics of narrative as narrative. That’s what’s kept it in production for almost three years and what’s built the ever growing audience. Joining AIR simply emboldened the ideas and the process, helping me connect with diverse communities who want to engage in thoughtful dialog and collaborate in ways that might push the needle just a little bit further. It doesn’t fit into a lot of the boxes we’ve come to frame around podcasting, but from the beginning that’s been its reason for being.”

Want to know what else is going on in the network? Find more #AIRster projects on our live feed and share your own to join in on the fun!