One of the funniest things I saw at the beginning of the pandemic was a little video floating around on Facebook, starring the cream of Australian talent, begging us all not to start a podcast.
Because guess what? It turns out every man and his dog has done just that. So here’s the thing… I am really late getting onto the podcast train. I’ve never been an early adopter.
It took until season three before I got into ’24’, TWENTY years ago, and then you could be forgiven for thinking I was the only person on the planet who was into it.
I never shut up about it!! I didn’t watch ‘Lost’ because I thought it was a reality TV show and I couldn’t understand why everyone was dying… True story. And this year, one of my brilliant podcast guests, Eddie Perfect, suggested I watch ‘Alone’.
Turns out it’s been running for seven seasons!
So yep, late to everything in the Zeitgeist, that’s me.
This podcast came about because my hairdresser asked me if I would ever go back to breakfast radio.
I don’t believe any truly creative person leaves something they’re completely over, just to go back to it.
And let’s face it, breakfast radio is a marathon, not a sprint. It’s for young people who are dating, or young people with babies and kids, who want to talk about the minutiae of their lives because they’re out having lives.
These days, I don’t have that much to talk about!
Don’t get me wrong, I can still talk under wet cement.
Just ask my dear friend Sonja, my walking partner six days a week, if she ever gets a word in during our 75 minute forest walk every morning.
Not so much…
She must love me.
I tell her she loves me all the time…
Back to radio and why I’m not there…
Radio is my FIRST love in the performing world.
I have never felt more RIGHT in my body, mind and spirit than when I was free-forming and flying on live radio. There is NOTHING like it.
But sadly, during my hugely successful career, most of that time I was living in active addiction and with undiagnosed issues (I was 52 when I was diagnosed with Adult ADHD. It sure made a lot of sense to me when I found out. Living with ADHD is like having ten TVs on in your head, all at once It’s a special kind of hell).
So I’m sure I would have been pretty hard work.
Most high functioning, highly successful creative people can be hard work. We know what we are trying to achieve and it’s all in our heads.
Part of being a creative is having to work with management and bean-counters who can’t do what we do.
THAT’S hard work!
There can be the politics of dealing with Mansplaining Content Creators.
Women weren’t in those roles when I was at the mic.
So I found that challenging.
And if we scream back to the recent-present-tense, in 2020, I found myself being told to ‘do a podcast’.
It just kept coming up, like that wack-a-mole thing in an arcade.
And my thought process was…
I’m a radio girl, I don’t like podcasts.
I don’t listen to podcasts!
Why would I want to make a podcast?
The world is drowning in podcasts and when I listened to a random handful (for research), I felt really sick. Honestly!
I found myself yelling at my phone, throwing my air-pods across the room in disgust and screaming “why would I listen to this crap? You’re just banging on about a text message that somebody sent you!”
Here’s the thing.
I consider myself extremely fortunate to have worked with some extraordinary talent in my radio career, in both commercial and public broadcast radio.
I was taught how to create strong content and I’ve worked with some of the BEST technical people in the radio industry..
The constant repetition of how to create compelling content permeated my thick skull.
It must’ve worked because I was banging on in your earholes for a very long time.
So when people kept telling me to ‘do a podcast’, I had no idea what I wanted to talk about!
It took a year of workshopping, writing, re-writing, dummy recording, research, being led down the wrong path, crawling back to the path I wanted to be on, meditation and finally (in all seriousness) lying in the middle of a field in Kew (well, Far Kew) and screaming at the clouds, asking for some clarity.
And Laughaholics was born.
To be honest, the name had popped into my head years ago and I had written it on a whiteboard but I had no idea what to do with it.
Which just goes to prove that Julia Cameron, brilliant author of The Artist’s Way is right (Always. I love her.)
Our thoughts are our brain-children and we must nurture them. (I’m paraphrasing but, you get the idea).
And like most creatives, once I had the nugget of the idea that I wanted to create, everything else fell into place.
It was imperative to me that I only released professional high-quality product.
So I work with a professional podcast producer Daryl Missen, who does a sterling job. <Vinilo.com.au >
And the best bit was making my wish list! So far, everybody I have asked has said yes!
Apart from one person, who had recently lost a parent and didn’t want to talk about family of origin stuff.
Fair enough, too.
So, because it’s important to me to always be in my integrity, I am only inviting people onto my podcast whose work I love and admire and whom I respect as people and performers.
(In case you were wondering how I came up with the line-up).
And the very first gorgeous person I put on my list was the beautiful Shane Jacobson.
Comedian, actor, businessman and creator of one of my favourite films of all time, Kenny.
Because, for real, I was super scared about starting something new.
I knew that with Shane, talking to an old friend who made me feel good just by saying hello, was the perfect entree for me into this strange new podcast world.
Did I sleep the night before? Not a wink.
Could I get my hair done so I looked perty? No. Lockdown meant all the hairdressers were closed.
So Shane and I looked like a couple of very hairy yaks!
And we laughed our heads off. He’s just divine, in every way (I must admit to fan-girling).
When people ask me what my podcast is I tell them that Laughaholics is a fun, entertaining, compelling conversation between two comedians who respect each other.
I ask my guests about the TV shows they watched with their families as kids, the comedians who influenced them growing up and, the comedians they love now.
As well as the comedians who have broken their hearts (Nelly Thomas and I talk about that).
The best thing? It’s like listening to two genuine people having a chinwag, and learning about what makes them laugh.
So a BIG thank you to everyone who has encouraged me to create a podcast.
Thank you to everyone who has supported me in creating this podcast.
Thank you to everyone who said they would listen to my podcast. All three of you…
And mostly, thank you to everyone who will share the podcast on their social media, because we all know that’s how we make things happen in 2022!
In the words of Jeff Fenech, I love youse all!